MBP 13 Non touch vs touchbar? Better processor worth it?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dt808, May 10, 2017.

  1. dt808 macrumors member

    Mar 3, 2013
    Las Vegas, NV
    Hey guys,

    I just bought a macbook pro 13 inch non-touchbar with 8gigs of ram. I am thinking I should return this and get the 13 inch with touch bar. I honestly don't care for the touch bar or the extra ports. I'm honestly only getting it for the better processor. Is it worth it just for the processor?

    I kept my previous macbook air for 6 years. So, I'm thinking if I can get 4-5 years out of this, might as well go all out and get the better processor?

    Is the processor upgrade really that significant? I am a real estate agent and plug this laptop into a big monitor at work. I really only use my computer at work for email, browsing internet, watching twitch, spotify, word and excel. I have a PC at home for gaming, but I love having a macbook for my daily work and portability.

    Thanks so much for your help!
  2. icymountain macrumors 6502

    Dec 12, 2006
    For the uses you mention, I would not expect a processor upgrade to make a huge difference (given the price).
    If I were to push one spec to make the laptop more future proof, it would be the RAM (in case newer versions of the OS and software require more RAM and slow down the computer), but even then, for the uses you mention, I do not expect it to be really required.
  3. ascender macrumors 68020


    Dec 8, 2005
    I wouldn't have thought you'd notice a different given the work you do and the faster CPU isn't going to increase the lifespan of the laptop either to be honest.

    Of all the extra things your money gets you, I think TouchID and the ports on the right hand side are the most useful day to day. But its a fair jump up in price and you still have 8GB RAM.

    Although there's some good deals on refurbs this week...
  4. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    For you, no it won't make any substantial difference.
  5. aevan macrumors 68040


    Feb 5, 2015
    Probably not, but the Touch Bar is - if you put it to good use. Also, more ports, at both sides and Touch ID.

    But the processor - probably not.
  6. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I like iMore's comparison between the two.
    Should you get Touch Bar and Touch ID on your 13-inch MacBook Pro?

    If it were me, I'd opt for the TB MacBook because gives you 4 full speed TB ports. TouchId can be a nice option and the processor is faster.

    Just my $.02 but the price difference isn't large enough for me to opt for the non-TB version, YMMV and my priorities and wishes may not align with yours.
  7. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    For your workload it will make no difference to you, keep what you've got and spend the money on fun.
  8. dt808 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 3, 2013
    Las Vegas, NV
    Thanks guys, I appreciate it!

    I think I will just hang on to this laptop, you have convinced me that it isn't a big enough of a jump for what I do. I honestly don't care for the touchbar and I have heard the battery isn't as good. I really like good battery life. Also, the additional usbc ports don't matter to me much. I have a usbc hub that gives me usb ports, charging, and an hdmi port. I think two is just fine for me.

    Have a good one!
  9. /V\acpower macrumors 6502a

    Jul 31, 2007
    From reviews of both laptops, there is no significant difference in the CPU speed.

    Basically the NonTB is 3.1 Ghz when Turbo Boost, the TB is 3.3 Ghz when Turbo Boost.

    Turbo Boost mean that the CPU will automatically overclock to these speeds when under heavy load, generating more heat (and thus needing more cooling) in the process. In theory, if the fans can't dissipate enough heat, the CPU will cool itself by throttling down to generate less heat for a while.

    The NonTB MBP have 1 fan, the TB MBP have 2 fans.

    However, even the NonTB MBP can run the CPU at 100% (3.1 Ghz) without really needing throttling, meaning that if you did a very CPU intensive task with both laptops, you'll be looking at the difference between a 3.1 Ghz CPU and a 3.3 Ghz CPU, a very little difference.

    Things changes however if you are doing a task that is both CPU and GPU intensive, now there is two chips needing heavy cooling, and the NonTB MBP isn't able to keep up in this situation (It will throttle down and thus be slower in this situation) and the TB MBP (having 2 fans) will perform significantly better.


    However, previous comments are right that for your usage, you are very unlikely to ever notice a difference.

    (full disclosure : I own the non touchbar MBP (default specs) and I'm very satisfied) (bought it the day they launched)

    (also, another note : the non touchbar MBP, with his lower wattage CPU, bigger battery, having 1 less fan and no touchbar to power up, obviously will give you better battery life.)
  10. mpConroe macrumors regular


    Feb 14, 2017
    Arbroath (UK) / Wroclaw (PL)
    To be honest, I picked up the MBP 13'' with TB because I used to have a white plastic MacBook 2008 and it was also a middle-range purchase. I wouldn't go with the cheapest configuration cos this computer should be able to use for 3 years. I like my Touch Bar and I'm only using ports to connect the SD card reader and copy some files from combo usb-c/usb-a pendrive.

    I sometimes regret that I didn't buy 15'' with 16GB RAM and Radeon graphics card.
  11. dyn macrumors 68030

    Aug 8, 2009
    Correction: it is only the 15" MBP where all 4 ports are full speed. The 13" version only has 2 ports at full speeds (the ones on the left), the other 2 are at a lower speed. This is due to the amount of PCIe lanes that are available from the CPU (the one in the 15" has more than enough, the 13" is a bit short on PCIe lanes). For most people the difference is negligible, they probably won't even notice a difference in performance between Thunderbolt 1 and 3 anyway.
  12. dt808 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 3, 2013
    Las Vegas, NV
    Thanks so much for the information!
    --- Post Merged, May 11, 2017 ---
    I'm going to stick with the non-tb macbook, should be more than good enough for my needs. I have a pretty good computer at home if I need more power. i7 6700k, gtx 1080, 16 gigs of ram, two monitor setup (144hz).

    I appreciate all the help!
  13. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    You're right, I misread the article on iMore.

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