The 13" is Dual Core only. Is this going to make its performance age quickly?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by whitedragon101, Jul 12, 2014.

  1. whitedragon101 macrumors 65816

    Sep 11, 2008
    My Mum wants a laptop and she is considering the 13". I never buy the 13" size so I only just noticed the whole lineup is Dual Core. I would feel rather uncomfortable buying a laptop in mid 2014 that is still dual core.

    My Mum is mostly going to be doing the basics, Web Browsing, Office, Videos etc

    I know dual core is fine right now but this is a lot of money for her and she wants it to last a good number of years. Will a dual core system be fine or will it age poorly as it seems like buying yesterdays technology right out of the gate?
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    While still dual core, the i5 and i7 dual core CPUs are twice as fast as Dual 2 Core CPUs due to Hyperthreading (one core has two threads (virtual cores)).

    Hell, even my 2009 C2D MBP can still play back 1080p MP4 and MKV videos fluidly, though Flash and 1080p is not so fun anymore, but that is where ClickToFlash comes into play.

    The 13" MBP is a mighty fine machine for the stated needs of your mom, even in some years.
  3. mtneer macrumors 68030


    Sep 15, 2012
    For your mom's stated usage pattern the dual cores in the 13" models will be more than sufficient for many years to come. My 2007 Thinkpad T60 Core2Duo can still do those tasks without a sweat...
  4. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    You'll be more than fine with dual core.

    The current dual cores utilize hyper threading for a pseudo quad core
  5. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    Nothing you listed there is even going to stress a dual core processor. Have her check out the MacBook Air if money is a concern, they are surprisingly fast computers.
  6. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    The dual core i5s in the 13" rMBPs (late-2013) perform almost identically to the quad-core i5s in the 2011 21.5" iMacs.

    For instance, here's the 2.4GHz i5-4258U dual core (late-2013 13" rMBP) vs the i5-2400S quad core (mid-2011 21.5" iMac).

    In multicore tasks, they perform identically but in single-core tasks, it performs way faster.
  7. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    The more cores the CPU has, the faster it can get with parallelizable algorithms. Neither browsing nor office, nor any there things you list are well suitable for parallel execution. A dual core CPU will age just as well as a quad core CPU in this case, because they have very similar performance characteristics for this usage.
  8. capathy21 macrumors 65816


    Jun 16, 2014
    Houston, Texas
  9. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816


    Apr 19, 2014
    I do all of that on a G4 with few issues.

    If web browsing, word processing, and watching videos ever require more than 2 cores to function, the developers of those programs need to be slapped.
  10. SarcasticJoe macrumors 6502a


    Nov 5, 2013
    You really shouldn't stare blindly at core counts or clock frequencies as what they tell you is far from the full picture.

    The general rule is that the newer the architecture, the faster it is and the fewer cores you have, the more you're going to get out each and every one of them. A good case and point is the Apple A7 (which powers the iPad Air and iPhone 5S). People who just stare blindly at clock frequencies and core counts think it's just a regular dual core chip and no match for quad core chips, however the reality is that it's actually very fast for a dual core chip and can easily punch with quad core heavyweights like Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800.

    So unles she's going to start doing something more taxing like playing 3D heavy games or doing high end video or photo editing, a dual core chip is just fine and a quad core one is just overkill.
  11. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    Her work is really not bound much by the processor - she may even see faster performance with an Air with the SSD than the standard MBP. It would boot faster, launch apps faster etc.

    The processor is more than capable and lacking the moving parts of the HDD in the standard MBP would probably last longer too. The battery life on the 13" air is almost 2x the standard MBP.
  12. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I think your mom will be fine on a dual core. My kids and wife use dual core Macs, one a 2009 Mac Mini and the other a 2010 MBP, both are able to do everything my family needs them to do.

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