rMB 12" 1.3 from rMBP 15" maxed

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Zodiac.mj, Jul 11, 2015.

  1. Zodiac.mj macrumors member

    Mar 10, 2013

    I would like to share my experience with current rMB 12", best OSX device I had ever used IMO.

    Long story short, my daily usage is:
    - browsing web (mostly our gamification apps) using Chrome, I don't like Safari,
    - PHP and related web technologies programming with PHPStorm and Vagrant virtualization,
    - using mail, photos with 3 Gmail accounts and lots of photos coming in,
    - editing tons of documents with M$ Office (Word, Excel),
    - Google Drive with 200GB of data being updated live by my team,
    - Skype, Slack and Messages for remote communication,
    - some light gaming, mostly World of Warcraft :)

    My first thought when I saw rMB specs on paper was - no way Core M can handle my workloads. I bought maxed out rMBP 15" (16GB RAM for example) to be sure it will suit me for 2-3 years. But it was too heavy to have it around every day on me, so after playing with it for about 14 months, I decided to sell. While I was waiting for my CTO order, I borrowed my wives MBA (1.3, that is version 2013 I think) and it worked well: working with PHPStorm was slow, but doable when on the road. Finally it came to me - that 15" rMBP was way too much power for me.

    Setting up my rMB was easy and fast, but downloading Google Drive contents and installing other apps at the same time made it throttle a lot. First thought - well, looks like I will have to return this beautiful machine and stick with rMBP 13", because MBA screen is awful when you get used to retina-class IPS. In the end I had to put rMB next to a fan to cool it up and finish setting everything up with decent speed. Waiting for it to cool off would waste lots of time, so I had to improvise.

    After everything was downloaded and software installed, rMBP was left for the night to index stuff and in the morning I started working on it. Launching apps and overall experience was great - but there was a lot of UI lag. Since I changed resolution to max (1440x900 retina), that was something expected. I'm really jealous about my wifed MBA, it runs OSX UI buttery smooth. But then 10.10.4 came and it's day and night for me: finally using Safari is fun, lag is mostly gone and overall user experience got better.

    The one most thing I am really surprised when it comes to performance is the ability to play WoW (min details, but maxed out texture quality) without problems. I had to limit FPS to 30 since it was running it at 60 most of the time. As a result of limiting fps, I can play fine even on battery power. Content loading time is awesome.

    Overall I love this machine, even though it's ahead of its time (overheating when using heavy software for long period of time). It allows me to work on the road, looks great, weights less than bunch of papers I take with me and is mind-blowing performance wise. I wouldn't expect such small device can handle my usage so well. And battery live even when using chrome is 6 to 7 hours. Like I wrote, best OSX device ever :)
  2. robin0627 macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2012
    Glad that you love your new Macbook! Just wonder if you are using it as your primary machine as I owe a 15" rMBP 2012 base model and I am considering purchasing the nMB. But I am afraid I will find the screen too small when watching films and reading news articles on the nMB, since I have been using a 15" screen for 3 years
  3. Cvx5832 macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2014
    The lag I got from 10.10.3 was noticeable but it never really bothered me, especially since my wife's rMBP had the lag in the same spots. That said I've been using 10.10.4 since it came out and I agree it's been great. It's removed all my lag and even after using it a while those gremlins haven't returned.

    I've encoded movies and while it does throttle and get hot, the "user experience" remains intact and I can continue to surf while I wait for my movies, for example. Sure it will take longer but hey it's a CORE-M! I knew this coming in. There's a Mac Pro with your name on it if you want to encode lickety-split.

    Overall very happy with the rMB like you OP. This is already a winner. I can imagine Gen3 somewhere down the line and that will be a very capable primary machine, especially if they introduce a bigger screen.
  4. Dark Void macrumors 68030

    Dark Void

    Jun 1, 2011
    Thanks for sharing your experiences. I'm surprised WoW is even playable - are you running at the native res?
  5. JoePa2624 macrumors regular


    Oct 12, 2014
    I'm glad that you're enjoying your new rMB. Surprisingly, I've noticed more UI lag on mine since updating to 10.10.4. It's still not terrible by any means, but it's more noticeable now than before I'd updated.
  6. Eric8199 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2009
    I have a 15" rMBP and I have no issues with the smaller screen. I did when I had an 11" MBA, but the retina display gives me enough detail that the smaller screen doesn't bother me.

    The only time I grab my 15" now is if I'm doing page design in Quark. Otherwise I use the rMB for everything. Excellent computer and totally able to be used as a daily driver.
  7. Zodiac.mj, Jul 12, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2015

    Zodiac.mj thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 10, 2013
    It's not my main machine, but it could have been. In my office I have a powerful, but 3 years old desktop solution with 3 displays. Planning to switch completely in the future.

    Like said above, 3rd gen will be a killer. Now it's just good, not great, but fine for some workloads, like mine example.

    WoW is great, resolution 1200-someting x 900, full screen. Running it natively may be a hard task for some desktops, do not even dream about it. My rMBP 15" (with nvidia 750GT) had problems running it 1440x900 with maxed details (ultra shadows kills perfromance on dGPU).
  8. Dark Void macrumors 68030

    Dark Void

    Jun 1, 2011
    Keep in mind too, if you can Bootcamp it, the WoW client for Windows will probably let you squeeze out a few more framerates. I normally wouldn't suggest Windows but if a game will open in fullscreen 99% of the time when you're using the partition then it will be out of sight, out of mind. :)
  9. robin0627 macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2012
    Thanks for your sharing and that from the OP. I guess I will wait still october to see if the rMB will be shipped with skyline or there are any redesigns of the rMBPs to make them thinner and lighter
  10. Roman2K~ macrumors 6502a

    Mar 11, 2011
    Second that :cool:.
  11. jetjaguar macrumors 68030


    Apr 6, 2009
    I've been tempted to sell my 15" rMBP for one but not sure. I don't do nearly what you do with yours though. All I do is browse the web, email, youtube, word and excel.

    I plan on getting a rImac when they update the 27"
  12. jjhoekstra macrumors regular

    Apr 23, 2009
    The MB is the best device I ever had. I bought it as a holiday device (I like to travel light) but it has now succeeded my MBP as main machine. All the usual stuff like safari and pages etc runs fine and even casual video-editing on FCX works ok, for long renders I tend to use my MP rather then the MBP. The MBP feels heavy and cumbersome in comparison to the MB and iOS on my iPad air suddenly feels unproductive. These machines both somehow have lost their reason to exist for me.
    The biggest disadvantage of the MB is clearly the one port. This means you can't run a backup to an external hdd or charge an iPhone and at the same time keep the MB powered from mains without one of those silly three-way connector cables. Travelling light means taking several silly and cumbersome cables.
  13. Zodiac.mj thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 10, 2013
    I wonder when vPro devices will come to rMB. Just saw an Intel Wireless Docking review yesterday and it's what we need for our machines!


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