Vega 20 vs 560X for NON video editing

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by uncle.zed, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. uncle.zed macrumors member


    Nov 17, 2009

    I'll be buying new MBP 15 next few days.

    I am getting the 2.6 512GB 32 GBram. The only question is weather to go with Vega or stick with 560X

    How I’ll work on that machine:

    1. Hook up to Kensington Thunderbolt 3 dock
    2. With that work with 2 x 27” QHD 1440p screens, gbit ethernet, external keyboard, mouse etc. . internal screen closed.

    What I do:

    1. Adobe illustrator (cs6) — big / huge files like 1-3 GB with lots of photos, txt, vectors, etc
    2. Lightroom 6
    3. Code (html, PHP, css, web basically)
    4. Occasional DaVinci for small video projects
    5. General web / music / video consumption.
    6. Some Photoshop

    And usually I would do all that stuff at the same time.

    For data storage i use almost exclusively Synology NAS via 1Gbit ethernet. it is a quick machine with 5 HDD in raid 5 so 1Gbit ethernet is the bottleneck, but generally its OK.

    Currently I am on 2014 MBP 13 i52.6 8GBram 256GBssd.
    I am struggling on Illustrator when working on big files, and doing anything on DaVinci.
    for other stuff that machine is very OK. Changing for personal reasons.

    So the QUESTION is should i go with VEGA 20???

    will it give some benefits like:

    1. better power consumption
    2. Better thermal performance for the CPU if the GPU struggles less?
    3. is it any real future proof for next 4-5 years?

    cons: money, time (BTO 5 weeks — here where I am).

    Can anyone give comprehensive advise ???

  2. CrysisDeu macrumors newbie

    Sep 16, 2018
    1. yes
    2. yes
    3. yes
    Vega 20 is the first true upgrade Apple has given to us since the late 2013's Nvidia 750m. If I were to get a new 2018 model, I will choose vega 20 for the sake of its a new chip(not the 3y-old 560x with Polaris Architecture.
    However, I am holding back for three reasons.
    1. Competition between AMD and Intel could bring a lot of performance boost in the upcoming years. I would at least wait for another year to see the progress.
    2. 7nm vega and Navi is on their way, we will see them in 2019, and possibly mbp 2019. They will have much better power consumption and performance. I am expecting at least 15% with 7nm vega and 40% with 7nm Navi.
    3. If I can wait one more year, I'd rather wait for another for the big mbp refresh in 2020(unless Apple stops the 4-year cycle).
    If you need to buy a new mbp this year, from your needs, I recommend going for 555x, my friend got an i9,32gb,1t,555x model for $3200 during Black Friday, a $450 discount, there should still be $300 discount on B&H right now, tax-free.
    The reason to go 555x is only DaVinci Resolve uses GPU, other programs you mentioned don't. They mostly need a higher CPU clock. So you could save a few hundred bucks by going 555x.
    UNLESS you also plan to play games on mbp, then I recommend you to go for vega 20. Games are poorly optimised on mbp, and you will need the performance. It can also make your mbp to last for 2-3 years more with its power.

    More reasons why I am waiting for 2020:
    1. David Wang returned to AMD, and is expected to release some GPU with some real competition after 7nm Navi in 2020 or 2021.
    2. Apple's ARM mac, according to A12x's performance, Apple's plan to stop supporting OpenGL and 32-bit programs in next MacOS' release, and migration of iOS apps, Apple could bring out ARM mac next year. (Started from A11, Apple removed hardware support for 32 bit)
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I'd say no, because your stated usage is not really pushing the GPU

    There's some information that Vega is not better at power/heat, I would try to get the actual specifications and see what actual usages are, and not any PR statements.

    As for future proof, if you don't really push a GPU, how will it be future proof? Back 15, 20 years ago, getting the fastest possible configuration made sense because both hardware and software was advancing at a fast past. Now a days there is little change to both, and what works well today will work just as well 5 years from now. Heck, my 2012 rMBP is still doing very well and that's over 6 years old. My point is there is no such thing as future proofing anymore.

    If you don't need a certain configuration today, its unlikely you'll need it in 2, 3 or 4 years from now
  4. Plutonius macrumors 604


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire, USA
    The way the MacBook Pros are designed now (keyboard issues, T2 issues, speaker issues, internal video cable, etc), I don't think you will be able to count on 4-5 years before needing a new MacBook Pro.

    I would base your future needs on three years (i.e. until AppleCare runs out).
  5. MrGunnyPT macrumors regular


    Mar 23, 2017
    Doesn't seem like you are using the GPU a lot so It would all come down to whether you wanna spend the money or not tbh..
  6. uncle.zed thread starter macrumors member


    Nov 17, 2009
    thanx everyone for the comments, I think I will stick with 560X.

    as per base 555X surprisingly I have a better deal here for 560X with 512 Gb and 32GB ram.
    the difference between i7@2.2 555X and i7@2.6 560X (same had and ram) is around $25

    I am not in US but in Poland so things are little bit different.

    Also still can’t decide between dock:
    1. Kensington sd5000t
    2. Sonnet Echo 11 Thunderbolt 3 Dock
    3. CalDigit Thunderbolt Station 3 / +

    I need it for those 2 screens, ethernet, power delivery and some usb (keyboard etc)
  7. Makiyora macrumors newbie


    Oct 17, 2017
    Brookings, SD
    The CalDigit TS3+ seems to be a fan favorite among MacRumors right now. I have been eyeing it personally and am just waiting for my Christmas bonus to pull the trigger on one. Seems to do everything and then some for a Thunderbolt 3 Docking solution. The 85W Power Delivery is also hard to find on a TB3 dock.
  8. garethsuarez macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2012
    I have used the caldigit TS2 for a couple years, and now have two TS3's (one driving my wife's single 34" monitor, and the other on my main workstation driving 2 4k displays, Ethernet, etc). I have never had any problems with them, and the 85w power delivery in the TS3 is a huge bonus.
  9. inhalexhale1 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 17, 2011
    Ridgewood, NJ
    I'm all for not overspending, but when you're already at $3k on a laptop, it's a long term investment. At that point, I would spend a little more on Vega, since it is a significant upgrade.
  10. Makiyora macrumors newbie


    Oct 17, 2017
    Brookings, SD
    If its not needed, may as well save that little bit of extra and put towards accessories such as a TB3 Dock. I had that mentality too when I was buying my MBP, and just decided that even though the savings are minimal, that money can go toward dongles, peripherals, etc.

    But I also can see where you're coming from, that the little bit of extra may be worth it to future proof some since $25-$200 beyond the $3,000 mark seems trivial.

    Ultimately its the OPs choice, but sometimes a cut here or there can help put you a little further ahead.
  11. uncle.zed thread starter macrumors member


    Nov 17, 2009
    I decided on 560X and already orderd it few minutes ago.

    main reason: money and time. it is acctualy qiute big defference here in Poland. the 560 i get for 13899 local and vega is 16000 so difference is 15% so quite significant ($ direct conversion $3657 vs $4210 so $550). Timewise its 2 days vs 5 weeks.

    And I really dont see any need for better GPU in my current work. If I ever need to go deep in video i can alwas buy eGPU.

    As per Dock I decided for I-TEC THUNDERBOLT 3 with 85W PD it is exact clone of Sonnet Echo 11 (probably built in the same factory in China) just 1/3 cheaper.

    Thanks everybody for the coments.
  12. Ploki macrumors 68040

    Jan 21, 2008
    "future proof"
    next gen will be 10nm, and the base model will probably outperform the i9 by a mile.
  13. Sterkenburg macrumors 6502

    Oct 27, 2016
    Indeed, the concept of future proofing has become quite meaningless on these machines. They’re not upgradeable, they’re hard to repair and any CPU/GPU upgrade is going to be outperformed by a base model in the near future.

    Get only what you need now and just enjoy your purchase is the best strategy these days. Something better is always around the corner anyways.

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