What's more important? Quad Core or 16GB RAM?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by timothetoad, Aug 26, 2014.

  1. timothetoad macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2014
    Hi guys I'm in a bit of a conflict in terms of what I should weight out more in buying a new rMBP.

    I understand that the more RAM a computer has, the more tasks, more programs it can run at the same time. However, with the programs I want to use for the computer, I was wondering if I can sacrifice having more RAM in a computer for a Quad Core processor (and perhaps a bigger screen).

    I'm a freelance videographer as well as a photographer. That being said, I'll be using Premiere, FCP, After Effects, and Photoshop as my primary softwares. Not all at the same time.

    Now I've been looking into some refurbished/new models. One option I have is to grab a refurbished (or even brand new) model of the October 2013 15-inch rMBP with Quad Core i7 (Crystalwell), 2.0 GHz, and 8GB of RAM. My other option is to purchase a new 2014 13" rMBP with Dual-Core Intel Core i5, 2.6 GHz, and 16GB of RAM.

    I'm just not too familiar how the Crystalwell processor works in terms of performance with the programs I plan on using.

    Anyway, if anyone can input some thoughts, I would really appreciate it!

  2. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    I'd go with the 15" model simply for the larger screen.
  3. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Depends on software

    It all depends on software, if you use apps that leverage all four cores (or 8 with hyperthreading) then the quad core is more useful, if you use lots of simple single core apps at the same time then the RAM will be more useful.
  4. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Personally, I'd opt for the 15" model just for screen real estate. The apps you listed will certainly benefit from the increased screen real estate..
  5. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    this is the right answer.

    Also for video editing I strongly suggest a desktop or at least an external screen.

    The nMP is a much better package for your usage.
  6. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a


    Sep 1, 2007
    If you are running that kind of video editing software, you should get a quad core i7 processor AND 16GB of ram. Do you really need a notebook or can you manage an iMac?
  7. timothetoad thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2014
    I would definitely opt for the Quad Core AND 16GB of ram if it wasn't out of my budget. The reason I had those two models listed was because they were relatively same in price, which is about $1500-1600. Otherwise, yes, I would definitely go for that option.

    I'm deciding on a laptop, since it will be for college. I won't be able to have a workstation in my room, especially because I'll be moving in and out of it every semester.
  8. kfmfe04 macrumors member

    Jun 19, 2010
    Well, if you literally can use the machine to make money, you should save up for both Quad Core and 16GB. After all, the extra cost can't be more than the equivalent of one or two project/job(s)...

    Another, more expensive option is, if you absolutely had to have the machine immediately (like a job is in the pipeline), get the Quad Core with 8GB, and then in a year or so, sell it and get a new Quad Core with 16GB, if you find that need the extra memory.

    However, I think having both Quad Core and 16GB from the start is better and cheaper.
  9. fcarreraf macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2014
    The bigger processor is more important in this case; go for the 15 either way.

    The dedicated graphics in the 2599 would be useful for video editing.

    You do not need that much ram and 8 will be enough. The battery will die faster with 16. Plus then that way sleepimage won't be 16gb and you will experience less write age!!
  10. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    For you — clearly quad core. All applications you mention are able to utilise it in a meaningful way. The 16GB is a good idea if you are working with very high image resolutions (or 4K video).
  11. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    When dealing with photography as a primary usage, RAM is the most important aspect in a computer. The more RAM the better applications will work with large images in various formats (RAW comes to mind).
  12. cube macrumors Pentium

    May 10, 2004
    If in your country Apple has the June 2012 quad-core 15" cMBP, buy that.

    Then you can upgrade to 16GiB RAM later.

    Do not buy 2011 cMBP.
  13. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    think about a mac mini with quadcore. Stick in an ssd an max out ram. Then hook it up to a thunderbold display.
    Great combo!
  14. cebseb macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2011
    That's what I've done! The server models are great for render farms. Unobtrusive and quiet(ish) and they keep out of the way while they do their thing for hours or days.
  15. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    I picked 15" screen because I like to work on video editing and Photoshopping than super small screen like 13". Quad core is important to have work done faster if you work on video editing. :apple:

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