MBP15 Mid-2014 2.8GHz vs 2.8GHz Mid-2017

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by nampramos, Jul 19, 2017.

  1. nampramos macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    Hi guys, I am hoping to get some help deciding what to do. Been searching the web for the better part of a day now and have not yet been able to reach a conclusion.

    Currently I own a "Built to Order" MacBook Pro 15-inch Mid-2014 i7-4980HQ @ 2.8 GHz, 16GB RAM, 512GB SDD and the dGPU NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M with 2 GB of dedicated GDDR5 memory.

    I've checked the Geekbench results of my machine vs. the newly released Mid-2017 equivalent with the 7th generation i7 CPU, which also runs at 2.8GHz. They aren't much different to be honest at 13866 for the Mid-2014 vs 14492 for the Mid-2017 (these are the Multi-Core scores).

    I know these are just the CPU results and a lot more goes into the equation. The newly released MBP have obviously faster SDD and RAM.

    Regarding the dGPU, after looking at the bench results for those, it does not seem to be a lot of progress either. Of course the newer Radeons are better, but again, not crazy better from what I could see.

    I'd expect to see a lot more progress in 3 years, no?

    The new form factor of the new MBP is definitely a big plus for me. Smaller and lighter is something I really appreciate and the Touch Bar can be very handy for editing on LightRoom which I tend to use a lot.

    What would you do? Would you upgrade just on specs? Would you even pay the extra for the higher end Radeon dGPU 560?

    Thanks a lot guys!
  2. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Probably not worth the effort yet, if you were using FCPX then you'd want that new graphics card it smokes just about everything on 4k video editing in FCPX but not so much in other apps.

    The graphics are a lot better (about 30-50% faster over the last generation AMD at a lower TDP) and cooler and quieter, other than that intel have concentrated on getting more battery life out of the same performance over the last 3 years.

    Yes a new one will be faster, smaller, lighter, quieter but it will probably not impact your work flow overly much so at that point only you can decide if its worth the effort at 3 years old yours will be coming to the end of its applecare warranty and it will still get a good price to offset the purchase so if you have an upgrade path for these reasons then why not otherwise you may want to wait a year or two more.
  3. nampramos thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    I'm not using FCPX or editing 4K. Although that could change in the near future as I am relocating to Australia in October and will probably get a lot more opportunities on that side of the business (instead of just still photography).

    You are right when you say it would be a lot quieter and cooler. This MBP with the 2.8GHz i7 does get extremely hot and noise, even when just doing trivial stuff on LightRoom. Plus, the battery life is no where near the announced 8h. I would get max 4h out of it when using LightRoom, most of the time less than that.

    I did get an excellent deal out of mine though. It was bought by a friend of mine in late 2014 but never opened. I got it in late November last year, so it doesn't even have 7 months of use yet.

    How much would you reckon it is worth today on the second hand market?

    Thanks for your help mate!
  4. Patcell macrumors 6502

    Aug 8, 2016
    Bergen County, NJ
    I had a similar configuration, but with the stock mid-level CPU (Core i7 4870HQ 2.5Ghz), 512GB SSD, and 750M GPU. I purchased mine brand new in late may 2015 (immediately after the 2015 model came out). I just sold it on eBay this past weekend for $1400 plus shipping. It was in excellent cosmetic condition and had one full year of AppleCare left on it though, so that helps hold the value. So, if you decide to sell, you should be able to get a very decent price for it; they really hold their value, these machines...

    I upgraded to a 2017 15" (2.9Ghz, 512GB, Radeon Pro 560). Performance-wise, there is an appreciable difference in some scenarios (maybe just feels a bit snappier overall..?), but to be honest, unless you really plan to make use of the dGPU for specific reasons (like FCPX), it may be better to hold on to your machine for another year or so. I doubt there will be a big difference in Lightroom; maybe the faster SSD would help with loading libraries of large RAW files.

    In summary, I do not regret the upgrade (especially given what I was able to sell for), but it is not necessary given the relatively small performance increase. Again, I'm sure there may be workloads that would benefit more than mine...
    --- Post Merged, Jul 19, 2017 ---
    Also, to answer the last question in your original post... I would definitely upgrade to the Radeon Pro 560 (even if purchasing the base model, you can BTO the 560). The 555 is a good card, but the 560 offers a big uplift in performance.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide!
  5. nampramos thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    Great info Patcell, much appreciated!

    All valid points you present there. I actually paid $1400 for mine to my friend, so a real steal!

    That's why upgrading now, even though performance wise I will probably won't gain much, I'd end up not losing any money or maybe even profit a tiny bit.

    What's your opinion regarding the battery life vs. the older one and the new form factor?

  6. Patcell macrumors 6502

    Aug 8, 2016
    Bergen County, NJ
    Wow! That really was a steal for that machine... I bought mine from B&H Photo online right after the 2015 models came out, so I only paid $1800 and I thought that was good! Yeah, if it's in good shape you should be able to come damn near breaking even. That helps the case for an upgrade at this point in a big way.

    I very much like the new form factor. There is a noticeable difference between the two in a backpack or messenger bag. I find myself checking my bag every so often to make sure I didn't leave my computer somewhere - that's how much smaller it is... as for battery life, I have noticed a big improvement, but I say that cautiously. I am extremely impressed with the battery life of the 2017 model with light use - I'm talking office apps, web browsing, and some Youtube. I have not done any photo/ video work on battery power, so I cannot speak to that at all. My wife is a professional photographer and uses Lightroom extensively, but on an iMac, so I don't know about battery impact there. I don't have any concrete numbers to backup my assertion, but anecdotally, the new machine sips power during light use. Much better than the 2014 model. Again, take that with a grain of salt because I cannot speak to battery life beyond that.

    Very happy with the new computer overall!
  7. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    If you do CPU-intensive stuff, you'll see a large difference. You might also see a difference if you don't do CPU-intensive stuff (one of the point of the newer CPUs is that the clock adjustment is faster, which is great for burst tasks like browsing or office work). I went from a 2015 MBP to a 2016 one and for statistical analysis/data wrangling that I do, I see 20-30% increase in performance.

    I think you are looking at wrong benchmarks. Already the entry-level Pro 450 is more then twice as fast as the 750M. The 460 Pro is around three times faster. Its call this crazy better, especially given the fact that they use 20%+ less power.
  8. negativzero macrumors 6502a

    Jul 19, 2011
    I got rid of my 2012 and got a 2017 model. The 2012 model was still working well but the fans and heat were killing me, even on the integrated gpu and only a few apps open, the thing would crank up the fans like a jet engine and the palm area was almost hot to touch, i needed to use a keyboard sometimes.

    The 2017 model on the other hand, runs so cool, i've never had the temperature shoot up once. Photoshop, 4k youtube, iTunes, torrenting, MS word all running and it runs cool and silent.

    Sure, the benchmarks and performance might be similar, but can you handle the heat of the older models?
  9. ZapNZs, Jul 19, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2017

    ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    I have your model but with the mid-level 2.5 CPU. The GPU is the bottleneck on our models more so than any other single component IMO (especially if you want to use 4k [or 5k] displays.) With that said, because my work is heavily CPU-based, this does not hugely effect me. I'm also glad I wound up with this model because the 750M seems to be immune to dGPU issues that have plagued many MBPs.

    I chose the 2014 when I did because of the relatively good results with the 650M (compared to the generation before it) and because at the point where I purchased my 2014 MBPr15, the 750M had been in a previous generation MBP for quite some time and had established itself as an extremely reliable GPU (this came at the expense of getting cutting-edge technology, which I was fine with because reliability was and is more important to me.)

    The dGPUs on the 2016/2017 models are a HUGE advancement. For reference, the iGPU on my base-level 2016 nTB is about the same speed as the 750M in my 2014 15-inch, and that is insane jump for a base iGPU model to have roughly the same graphics performance as a flagship dGPU model from only about 2.5 years earlier. The Radeon 560 poops all over the 750M and then some - for GPU-intensive work, I imagine this in and of itself is sufficient reason for such Users to upgrade.

    From a buying perspective, it may not be a bad time to purchase a dGPU model within several months. Given the 5xx similarities to the 4xx, and both generations are proving themselves are reliable dGPUs, plus the fact that the new generation MBP makes a lot less heat, all seems to work in the favor of their longevity & a solid track record is forming. If I were personally going to buy a fully specced out dGPU 15-inch and I already had a machine capable of satisfactorily filling the intended role for the time being, I would probably wait another 6 months until we were getting close to the next refresh round to ensure the dGPU maintains a reliable track record (but, consequently, buying in such a way favors reliability/longevity over being the first to try out newer and less-proven tech.)
  10. jerryk, Jul 19, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2017

    jerryk macrumors 601

    Nov 3, 2011
    SF Bay Area
    I have a 2015 15" and understand your disappointment. I really want USB-C and like the reduced weight and form factor. But the performance gain is ... But, according to Intel, the next gen CoffeeLake chips will be a 30% increase in performance. You might want to wait until 2018 when they are available. That is when I will look again.
  11. nampramos thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    Thanks guys, I really appreciate all your input. Many great points made.

    It is also true that if I keep waiting, everything will always be better the next year. That's how technology goes, especially with computers. In a year from now, I doubt I will be able to get the same or more money than what I paid for mine.

    With that said, I've listed it on a classifieds page, priced a bit higher than what I paid for it (got it for an incredible price from a friend like I previously mentioned). If someone takes it, then it would be a no-brainer to upgrade to the current model since it would be a much smaller investment. But if there are no takers, I will probably keep it for now. The only thing that bothers me more is the battery life, which is about half of what I got from my previous 13'' rMBP from 2015, and the fan going crazy when it gets really hot during LightRoom editing.

    I'm sure I would really enjoy the smaller form factor of the new one, plus the 200g less it weighs and of course, the longer battery life. The performance increase would be an added bonus, but it isn't something I really lack from this one I would say.

    Keep your comments and opinions coming, if you have any. Thanks!
  12. Miltz macrumors 6502a

    Sep 6, 2013
    New York
    Well sounds like you might Want a new laptop vs Need. The new model will be much faster overall. The display is amazing ( Better color and brightness ) thinner, lighter, and quieter under load. SSD is crazy fast. If you don't need it wait till 2018.
  13. Patcell macrumors 6502

    Aug 8, 2016
    Bergen County, NJ
    Good point, but I don't think I have ever NEEDED a new computer necessarily. I mostly upgrade when I want to... haha!

    Guilty... I really wanted the new form factor, so I ditched my two year old 2014 model, which was still stupid fast.
  14. nampramos thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010

    You're probably right! :D

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