To dGPU or not to dGPU: a 15" rMBP conundrum

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by FuNGi, Jul 31, 2015.

  1. FuNGi macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2010

    My wife is looking to replace her 15" MBP from 2009 and her 11" MBA from 2010. She thinks the lightness of the macbook is sexy and agrees with me to get a friggin retina screen in 2015. Buuuuut she wants more than 12" inches (please stop) so has decided to get the 15" rMBP with 512GB of SSD. Price differences between the Intel Iris only and AMD dGPU configs are marginal and she doesn't care about the prices really. She wants it to last both daily and yearly and is not editing video or using Handbrake (I do that). Is there any reason she should get the dGPU model? I think not* but am curious what you all think.

    *My impression from my own 750M rMBP is that the Intel Iris graphics is more than adequate and I'm aware that there are concerns with dGPU failures (ahem, Maflynn) for all of Apples laptops based on extended repair programs for both AMD and NVIDIA chips which we've both personally experienced.

  2. pjfan macrumors regular

    May 24, 2009
    Columbus OH
    I have to believe the Iris Pro might run consistently cooler and longer on battery than the dGPU.

    I don't think you're looking at a 4 cylinder vs 6 cylinder car.... More like two 6 cylinders with same (for you) performance, but one might get better mileage. You made the right call, go for non-dGPU is my vote.
  3. Briax macrumors member

    Mar 11, 2011
    I have the one with the dGPU - 85% of the time its running on the Iris chip the other 15% is when i fire up a game or Virtual Machines. If the price difference is almost negligible why not spring for the dGPU? You can control which graphics card is active with GFXCardStatus.
  4. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
    it depends on what applications you are running. If you are running lots of video or photo editing apps then dGPU will make a difference, but if it's just email, web and a bit of office stuff then I wouldn't bother.
  5. mickeydean macrumors 6502

    Dec 9, 2011
    the dGPU is always used for my external monitors...What sort of external monitor support does the non-dGPU support? OP might be interested in that.

    Since I got the PS4 I haven't bothered with mac gaming or bootcamping so dGPU is now a bit redundant for me. Might sell the late 13 with dGPU to buy a non-dGPU with the force touch. Thoughts?
  6. FuNGi thread starter macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2010
    Good point about the external monitors being a plus for a dGPU, although I'm uncertain its needed for less than 4k with the Iris Pro. Fortunately she has an iMac as a standing desk so will use the rMBP only for couch and desk work without any external monitor. This is in part why she wants the extra inches of screen.

    As I said, sh is not using video intensive editing software so the only remaining reason I can think of to go for the dGPU version is resale value.
  7. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Not a plus unless you need to run more than 1 4K screen. It is actually detrimental as if can only run on the dGPU for external screens using more power and generating more heat.

    As for resale value there basically isn't a mac upgrade I have found that gives you more in resale than you lose on initial spend.

    In other words buy as you wish it will make little to no difference either way.

Share This Page