Question about which Retina MBP to choose for gaming.

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Wonderhaven, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. Wonderhaven macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    Location:
    TN
    #1
    Hey guys,

    First off, I know the Macbook Pro is not the computer I should get if I want to game. My Macbook Pro from last year has been the best computer I've ever owned and has handled every game I've thrown at it either natively or through bootcamp and plus I much prefer the Mac OS for everyday computing.

    That being said, I'm going to upgrade by getting a Retina MBP. Honestly, I've already ordered the base retina model with the 2.3 GHz processor. The order has still yet to ship yet so it's not too adjust the specs on the computer. This morning I started looking at some recently posted gaming benchmarks and was surprised to see the jump in fps while gaming between the 2.3 R-MBP and the 2.7 R-MBP. They only benchmarked a handful of games including Portal 2 and Starcraft 2 but the fps jump in each was between 6-13 fps.

    My question to you guys is whether it would be worth me calling and changing my order to either the 2.6 or 2.7 GHz processor in regards to gaming. Do you think the jump in fps warrents the additional cost? Thanks in advance for you help.
     
  2. njean777 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2009
    #2
    Neither to be honest, if you want a gaming machine get a base 15in or upgraded version. The GT650m with the resolution from the retina will not be able to push games that well at native resolution. You can always scale it down, but if you are paying that much for a computer I would expect the thing to be able to handle games at native res. The regular 15in are better for gaming imo as they can use full resolution and still play most games today.
     
  3. pgiguere1 macrumors 68020

    pgiguere1

    Joined:
    May 28, 2009
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    #3
    For most game the GPU is more likely to be the bottleneck. The two games you mentioned are however more CPU-intensive than the average game. Source engine games and RTS games in general rely a lot more on CPU than most games. It depends on the games you will play, some will offer no framerate increase with a beefier CPU while those two will.
     
  4. njean777 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2009
    #4
    But if you must have a retina, then just go with the base if you can handle the limited amount of memory. The processor in it will be able to handle all games today. Most games do not even use 4 cores as of yet.

    WTH I meant to edit my comment, not quote myself, oh well...
     
  5. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #5
    Price really isn't any sort of metric re: performance. The MBPR performs admirably at native res, considering how ridiculously huge the resolution is and how thin and light the machine is. I'm very impressed by how my MBPR runs Diablo III and Skyrim at 2880 x 1800 so far. Does it run them at 60fps? Of course not. Does it run them well enough that I can play and enjoy the resolution? Yes. And if I need to run them at lower res, it doesn't look noticeably worse than the lower res machines, just a little softer perhaps.
     
  6. Wonderhaven thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    Location:
    TN
    #6
    Thanks for the help guys. That's interesting that source and rts games rely more on the CPU than other games do. Makes since but I never stopped to think about it that way.

    So from what I've gathered from you guys and other topics, the absolute most I'm going to benefit from moving up to the 2.6 or 2.7 processor is around 10%. If this percentage related directly to fps (which I doubt it will) that means the increase would be minimal at best.

    I realize that this computer is going to be able to run anything I throw at it even if it means turning down the resolution. That doesn't bother me at all as I'm used to having to turn the 27 ACD resolution down to 1080p when I game on it.

    Right now it is sounding to me like the base model actually is the best setup for my needs. I've been surviving on a 128 gig SSD for the past year so I'm not going to know what to do with all the space on a 256 lol.

    So just to clarify, I'm not going to be getting a worthy gain in game performance by either upping the RAM and / or processor speed from the base model to warrent the $600-800 jump in cost right?
     
  7. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #7
    I mean, getting the base model with 16GB of RAM might be prudent for the future, as the next generation game consoles hit and games start to move to 64-bit, but on the games that are coming out today 8GB is more than plenty. Personally I figured I’d be good with 8GB of RAM and stuck to the base model.
     
  8. Mac-Tech macrumors regular

    Mac-Tech

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2012
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    #8

    Check this out: Gaming on the new Retina Mac Book Pro

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ybp12NY9rQ&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t04ZsOCtUWM&feature=related
     
  9. jonnymo5 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #9
    I have only loaded up Diablo 3 so far but gaming performance has been great. The new cooling is really amazing. My 2010 MacBook would melt my lap just watching a video but this thing handles it with ease. As others have said the CPU won't make a huge difference for games. I don't even think the ram upgrade will make a difference as long as you don't have a bunch of other programs running.
     
  10. MH01 macrumors G4

    MH01

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    #10
    If your main purpose is gaming, always get a PC.

    Though I will assume you really want a mac, so its upto you what you consider acceptable FPS in games, and based on that decide if you need to upgrade to 2.6 or 2.7. I set my standard at 60 FPS, hence I have a dedicated gaming PC running top of the range GPU, and never buy a MBP based on its gaming performace, as all of them are way sub par for me.

    You on the right path, see what people are getting while benching with different CPUs, also make sure the results are at the same Res.
     
  11. Wonderhaven thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    Location:
    TN
    #11
    Completely agree with you on this.

    However, I'm looking for this to be a multifunctional do all computer. I want the Mac for work and day to day functions but I also want to be able to play current games (whether it be on the mac or bootcamp partition) and those that come out in the next 1-2 years. Playing games with highish settings with at least 30 FPS is completely acceptable to me because I know this computer isn't meant particularly for games.

    All the input has been very helpful and I can't thank you all enough.
     
  12. kate-willbury macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    #12
    i'm confused. how is a PC not applicable to "day to day" functions then? seems very weird that you're buying this machine for gaming when there are definitely better machines (for gaming) for much less. retina display screen isn't going to help you at all and will actually make things look worse in your case. older games like starcraft and portal2 won't be updated for retina display.

    i guess if you just want to brag about having the latest and have a lot of disposable income, go for it.
     
  13. doh123 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    #13
    i think your biggest problem with the low end one is the 256gb drive. By the time you split that up for Windows and install several big games, your going to be very tight on space.

    Later on I'm sure OWC will have upgraded drives available though, so in the short term you could use something like a 128GB SDXC card.
     

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