Retina MBP /w 8 or 16GM of RAM? (HELP!)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by ennui613, Jun 11, 2012.

  1. ennui613 macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    (posted this in another thread but never got answered so making a thread for it)

    this might have been discussed in some other posts, so i apologize ahead, greatly appreciate it if someone can chime in:

    so i'm struggling with which model to get for the retina macbook pro. first of all, as some posters have pointed out, 2.3ghz and the 2.6ghz isn't a big difference in performance for most people. saw some benchmarks earlier and sort of backed it up. with 256GM of flash memory, i can live with it and just get an external drive to store all my non important files (there might even be a chance it can be an owc upgrade option in the future) but what i really want to ask is... 8GB or ram or 16GB of ram? do you think it will make a big difference in the next 1-2 years time? since the memory seems to be soldered into the board, i need to make the right decision before i go buy it...

    also, this is kind of random but, i'm currently in japan and for the people who might know this, will they have an option to pick up a US keyboard also and not only the japanese style keyboard layout (in store that is)? i read from somewhere it's possible but want to double check.
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    It really depends on what workload you intend to put on it, more than the length of time you plan to own it. For most average users, 4GB is more than enough, so they likely would never max out 8GB. Some say max it out now, since it's not that much more money, but it's up to you to decide what your needs are.
  3. Martialis macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    No one can answer this question without knowing what kind of work you want to do with your laptop.
  4. ugp macrumors 65816


    Jan 7, 2008
    Inverness, Florida
    I personally have 16GB in my iMac and I have never come close to using it all. I have messed with large FCPX projects and still didn't need it all. 8GB should be more than enough for 80% of consumers I would say. If you have the extra cash go ahead and get the 16GB as the RAM is not upgradeable down the road.
  5. pragmatous macrumors 65816

    May 23, 2012
    Max it out now because you can't upgrade it nor replace the RAM later. The RAM is not use replaceable.
  6. Xystence macrumors regular

    Apr 17, 2010
    I am really in the position with this thought. I really cannot decide whether to go with 8 or 16. I think the most intensive thing I do with my macbook is play Diablo or Guild Wars 2. Both of which only recommend 4GB of Ram.

    Outside of this I use photoshop every now in them for very little and do website design. I had 8GB in my 2010 MacBook Pro, and it always worked great.

    I have to order my MacBook online regardless of which I pick because of a friends employee discount but I am really stuck with which of these to go with.

    Any advice?
  7. ennui613 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    thanks for the reply! well, i don't play a lot of games but i do intend to play diablo 3 on it and do some photoshop once inawhile. i don't do any audio or video processing with it. besides that, the usual web serving, watching video files, listening music on it, regular office work on it.

    if i start making some money, it won't be too hard to upgrade again in 1~2 years. i can afford the upgrade to 16GB actually but, that means it has to ship from china therefore there's gonna be a few weeks wait... i would rather just pick it up in store right away and experience the excitement right away!

    i have been using the same sony laptop for like 5~6 years now. i guess if i can live with a 120GB hdd and 2GM of memory for the last 5 so years, i think 8GB should be okay...


    you're like on the same boat as me. i think from what everyone is saying, 8GB seems good enough. if you got the spare money and plus u're getting discount from ur friend, it wouldn't be too big of a deal to upgrade to 16GB. i can afford the upgrade too BUT, just hesitate to wait a few weeks instead of picking it up right away.
  8. raymondu999 macrumors 65816

    Feb 11, 2008
    My cousin has a unibody macbook pro (the refresh before the first i7) that he bought in Japan. The space bar rather than being the same width as 5 letter keys is 3 letter keys wide, and there is a button to the left of it which I can't remember now, and the button to the right of it is apparently a quick switch hotkey to switch input languages between Japanese and alphabet. I'm not sure whether you can opt out of this keyboard though. Maybe not stock? Try the Japan online apple store.
  9. ennui613 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    i just posted it on a different post in this thread. sorry for the delay.

    thanks for the info. i agree with u. i guess 16GB with no cpu upgrade or even flash memory upgrade, the waiting time/shipping time is still going to be same? i want this right away!! =/

    thanks. ya, thinking of going that route as i have said previously, just don't want to wait another few weeks just because it's customized. laptop is 5~6 years old, been waiting for years to get rid of this... no more patience!!


    ya, the japan apple store has an option to change to the US keyboard. just wondering if they have it in stock at the store. i guess i'll just go and ask later!! thanks for the info! ya, after being use to using the US layout, the japanese layout can get a bit annoying =/ some of the keys' location are different.
  10. pragmatous macrumors 65816

    May 23, 2012
    Here's a question. Do you really need retina?

    The regular MBP has respectable resolution at 1680. The RAM, HDD, and Battery are all replaceable. Get it with 8GB now and down the road you can upgrade it to 16GB. You'll get the laptop this week or early next week.

  11. mobilebuddha macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2008
    to me, the question of 8 vs 16GB is really how long you plan to keep your laptop. if you are going to keep it for 4-5 yrs, since it doesn't look like the RMBP's RAM is user upgradeable, then by all means, get 16.

    If you are like me and want new machines every 2-3 yrs.. doesn't make sense to spend the extra buck now. 8GB should be fine for the next 2-3 yrs.
  12. ennui613 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    that is true spec wise. i have thought about going that route and if the retina macbook never show up, i would have bought the regular design one anyways. i don't think, for most consumers, the retina is necessary but as dumb as it sounds, it'll just be really nice to own one. but i do consider myself visually sensitive and i can tend to tell the difference.

    2~3 years, by then i should be upgrading so i guess you're right, 8GB is good enough. asking all these questions because i haven't had a new computer for 5~6 years now. not sure what is the current common requirements for most applications. so need to re-educate myself. thanks for the reply.
  13. bRADYPUS macrumors member


    Oct 29, 2011
    what if i'm not doing any intense works nor heavy gaming. I heard that games don't take much ram, is it true?
    i chose this just because of the screen and thinness.:confused:
  14. ennui613 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    i don't think its illogical to to buy the retina macbook pro just for the thinness and the display. some people want a MBP and doesn't want too much weight on it. of course, the display will be crazy to marvel at... if you don't do heavy gaming, i think the graphics card inside, nvidia gt 650m is more than enough! same for diablo, as one poster mentioned earlier, it's requirements are only 4GB. the base model already has 8GB so it should be good enough.
  15. mobilebuddha macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2008
    as far as I know, that's pretty close to the truth. At least for the moment, (as far as I know, again) I don't think there's a game out there that would take > 8GB of RAM and would run better if you have 12/16.

  16. ennui613 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    hopefully i'm not lying to myself but after reading through all these threads and post and thinking about it, if you want to use it for 1~3 years, i think 8GB should be sufficient as another poster has informed me.

    one thing i hope is, there won't be too many bugs with this new retina macbook pro. it is the first generation of its kind after all.
  17. MR1324 macrumors 6502

    Nov 22, 2010
    honestly, if you have to ask, then you don't need 16gb.
  18. TheMacBookPro macrumors 68020


    May 9, 2008
    You will have to order directly off Apple- brick and mortar stores like Yodobashi, Bic Camera and Sofmap do not have models with the US Keyboard installed in-stock. I believe they can order one for you with your config in mind for you to pick up at their store though so if you want the points back then that might work.
  19. bRADYPUS macrumors member


    Oct 29, 2011
    So i will wait for a while and buy it in late july if there is nth wrong
  20. tungo529 macrumors member

    May 11, 2010
    Question. Does anyone know with the new retina display MBP's, if you wanted to upgrade to 16GB of RAM, do you have to purchase through Apple, or can you upgrade it later on with your own RAM?

    Basically, is it like the MBA, in which it is all integrated or like the previous MBP models that you can replace the RAM on your own.

    There are cheaper alternatives if you can do it yourself, and I would like to save my nickels and dimes, especially with the price of this computer.
  21. ennui613 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012
    wow, one person that has some knowledge of japan! thanks for the reply. i was thinking of getting it from yodobashi because i can get points from them and possibly student discount at the same time. if that's possible, perhaps i don't mind waiting...
  22. Vexed macrumors member

    Jun 1, 2012
    Add-on question: I haven't gamed for some time, just because I've been in a lower-end laptop without a dGPU. I previously had a '10 MBP with 4 GB and never had a real issue, double that sounds fantastic. As someone who wants to jump into gaming, what is the likelihood that more RAM will become more necessary at a rate faster than say, a new GPU / Processor would be?

    I guess my main question would be: If the most intensive application I plan on using this MBP for is gaming, would I discover a need for more RAM before I discover the need for a new laptop in general?
  23. mitocho macrumors newbie

    Jun 11, 2012
    I have a late 2008 MBP (the first unibody model) with 4GB of RAM, and it runs fine for me. I can run Photoshop CS 5.5 fine if I don't have a bunch of other programs running. 4GB is really quite a bit, and I only ever feel it if I'm doing some heavy multi tasking and/or video/photo editing or running VMWare.

    I have a workstation with 6GB running Win7, and I've never had any problems while programming or video/photo editing or running VMWare, and Win7 is a memory hog. I personally think 8GB is fine.

    For gaming, 8GB is definitely enough.

    However, I will say that I've never done HD video editing, so YMMV. If you're doing 1080p RAW (1080p from most video cameras is probably ok, since it's pretty heavily compressed) or 4K RED video editing, I would say 16GB is definitely worth it. If you plan to run multiple VMs, 16GB would be a good decision(why you would do so is beyond me). Otherwise I think 8GB is fine.

    On another note: 16GB for $180 is a pretty darn good deal.
  24. Vexed macrumors member

    Jun 1, 2012
    Also, how big of an impact would this have on Boot Camp? How about running Parallels?
  25. mitocho macrumors newbie

    Jun 11, 2012
    8GB vs 16Gb would have a negligible impact on boot camp. Parallels/VMware Fusion, it would definitely have a much bigger impact. How much, I can't really say, but I think it would definitely be noticeable.

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