When are we getting more than 16gb ram, it's 2017

holden j caufield

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 27, 2017
26
3
California
My work laptop has 64gb ram and I'm stuck with 16gb on my retina . I adore my retina but it's really lagging. I've had 32gb on my laptop since 2012
 

holden j caufield

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 27, 2017
26
3
California
I don't plan to, and apple is really blowing some smoke. I really doubt more ram will crush the battery time. We've had Dell precisions and thinkpads at work and I've tried them with 2 and 4 sodimms and the battery time was pretty much the same.
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
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apple is really blowing some smoke.
Playing devil's advocate here, .. what does Apple have to gain by blowing smoke?

They already messed up the battery life on these by not being able to include the larger battery that they had designed for these new cases.
 
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Sanpete

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Nov 17, 2016
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I really doubt more ram will crush the battery time. We've had Dell precisions and thinkpads at work and I've tried them with 2 and 4 sodimms and the battery time was pretty much the same.
The problem isn't primarily the amount of RAM but the type. Using 32 GB with current processors, including Kaby Lake, requires using desktop RAM. That does necessarily lessen battery life relative to using low-powered laptop RAM. I estimate based on the best data available that is costs 5 to 84 watt-hours over ten hours use for 32 GB DDR4 vs 16 LPDDR3, depending on the load. The largest battery can only be under 100 watt-hours.

They already f'ed up the battery life on these by not being able to include the larger battery that they had designed for these new cases.
Actually, despite that setback, the battery life for the 13" without TB and the 15" was improved from the previous models. But I agree that Apple isn't blowing smoke about the very real battery issues with using desktop RAM.
 

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
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Using more then 32GB RAM with a dual-channel memory controller makes very little sense. I guess your work laptop is a large Xeon-equipped workstation? Furthermore, having more then 16GB RAM on a dual-core CPU also makes very little sense — if your resident datasets are really that large, you'd have constant cache trashing which will probably kill the performance anyway. For most well-behaved problems, there is no need to load all the data into the memory. Having the CPU process a chunk of the data while next portions are being loaded from the disk is just as efficient. Its a shame though that many software developers don't bother with proper optimisation and well-behaved algorithms these days...
 
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mcomp112

macrumors regular
Jan 1, 2017
111
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Cannonlake would finally allow for LPDDR4 32GB RAM so, by most estimates, you'll need to wait till October 2018 at the earliest and October 2019 at the latest (based on Apple's caution with processors, I would assume it would be later rather than sooner).
 
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ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
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I feel your pain.

Many analysts with a reasonably good track record believe the forthcoming refresh will feature 32 GB of RAM, and production has probably already started on individual components for them already. Battery improvements seem like a strong possibility as well.

It seems likely that this will be given higher priority with the 2017s than it was with the 2016s, considering how many other changes the 2016s saw relative to the 2012-2015 generations (not to mention using 32GB on the 2016 would have meant Apple delaying their launch and using the CPU that could have supported 32 GB laptop RAM, or use a completely different case design for desktop RAM.)


apple is really blowing some smoke
Technically, Samsung is the one blowing smoke (and flames)

Apple comically removed the battery estimator, which is infinitely better than blowing smoke (and exploding.)
 
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Sanpete

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Nov 17, 2016
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using 32GB on the 2016 would have meant Apple delaying their launch and using the CPU that could have supported 32 GB laptop RAM
That won't happen for another year or two. Kaby Lake, like Skylake, can only use 32 GB if it uses desktop RAM. If Apple offers a laptop with 32 GB this year, it will use desktop RAM.

Technically, Samsung is the one blowing smoke (and flames)
Haha!
 
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medulla

macrumors regular
Jun 15, 2012
218
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That won't happen for another year or two. Kaby Lake, like Skylake, can only use 32 GB if it uses desktop RAM. If Apple offers a laptop with 32 GB this year, it will use desktop RAM.


Haha!
Whats the difference between mobile RAM and desktop RAM?
 

mixart

macrumors member
Dec 2, 2012
69
14
I really can't wait anymore. I would loved 32GB in my next Macbook Pro for future proof, but my currently 15" Late 2013 with 2.6Ghz/16GB/512GB SSD/Intel Iris Pro is having a hard time running my new LG UltraFine 5K, so I'm ordering the new Macbook Pro 15" with 2.7Ghz/512GB SSD on monday. Just can't desire if I should go for 455 vs 460 for Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign with a 5K display. Here in Denmark I can get the 455 for $450 cheaper than the 460.
 

aevan

macrumors 68040
Feb 5, 2015
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Serbia
My work laptop has 64gb ram and I'm stuck with 16gb on my retina . I adore my retina but it's really lagging. I've had 32gb on my laptop since 2012
Lagging in what, exactly. What do you need the 32Gb for? I'm almost certain it wouldn't fix your lag.

It's for people running VMs or doing a lot of video. It has nothing to do with lag, and in 2017. 16Gb is quite enough for almost everything (other than some very specific tasks, then you're out of luck).

But people love higher numbers, and MacRumors forum members are obsessed with 32Gb RAM. In the outside world, 16Gb on a new MBP will get you far.
 

JMacHack

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2017
419
484
Lagging in what, exactly. What do you need the 32Gb for? I'm almost certain it wouldn't fix your lag.

It's for people running VMs or doing a lot of video. It has nothing to do with lag, and in 2017. 16Gb is quite enough for almost everything (other than some very specific tasks, then you're out of luck).

But people love higher numbers, and MacRumors forum members are obsessed with 32Gb RAM. In the outside world, 16Gb on a new MBP will get you far.
Not incredibly far, I'm regularly using 12gb doing illustrator and photoshop work. Future versions, as the ability to display complex graphics grows, will likely use up even more resources.

Right now, 16gb will work. Give it a couple years, who knows? It's about future-proofing and ROI rather than outright specs
 

zaphodb3

macrumors member
May 3, 2015
52
63
For the umpteenth time, you will not see 32gb ram until a suitable LP version becomes available.

This has been Apple's M.O. for years-- they are not willing to sacrifice battery life for any reason other than reducing the size of the laptop (and even then, they prefer to keep the battery life level).

If you want a laptop with desktop-class RAM, by all means go Windows. Just know that you will be paying for a) a heavy laptop and/or b) a laptop with relatively low battery life. Or, I dunno, petition Apple to make 17-inch laptops again.:D
 

aevan

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Feb 5, 2015
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Serbia
Not incredibly far, I'm regularly using 12gb doing illustrator and photoshop work. Future versions, as the ability to display complex graphics grows, will likely use up even more resources.

Right now, 16gb will work. Give it a couple years, who knows? It's about future-proofing and ROI rather than outright specs
Nope, Photoshop and Illustrator will use ALL available RAM but tests clearly show there is no increase in performance with more than 8Gb RAM even with large files. 16Gb RAM will make Photoshop run at 100% efficiency for at least 5 more years.

I don't want you to take this the wrong way, but I don't think you understand how RAM works. You won't need more than 16Gb for Photoshop or Illustrator for a long time.
 

JMacHack

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2017
419
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Nope, Photoshop and Illustrator will use ALL available RAM but tests clearly show there is no increase in performance with more than 8Gb RAM even with large files. 16Gb RAM will make Photoshop run at 100% efficiency for at least 5 more years.

I don't want you to take this the wrong way, but I don't think you understand how RAM works. You won't need more than 16Gb for Photoshop or Illustrator for a long time.
While it's true I haven't encountered any slowness, and I know that programs allocate ram whether or not they need it, I'm just concerned about the amount of time I have before I start to get slowdown. I have both open (with multiple tabs and projects) at the same time as I do mail, safari, finder with multiple tabs, etc.

I know the Apple programs make use of ram and battery efficiently (which is why I don't use Firefox or Chrome), but since the laptop is locked-down I have no choice but to stick with the hardware I currently have. No future upgrades, I get what I get. I don't know what the future holds, or if I'll have to run memory-intensive programs in the future.
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
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In the outside world, 16Gb on a new MBP will get you far.
Except when it doesn't! :p


That won't happen for another year or two. Kaby Lake, like Skylake, can only use 32 GB if it uses desktop RAM. If Apple offers a laptop with 32 GB this year, it will use desktop RAM.
Is that also the case with Coffee Lake or whatever the Kaby replacement is that was (at least originally) scheduled to be released this year?

Does that mean the analysts predicting 32GB RAM are banking on Intel being able to release a CPU capable of supporting LPDDR4 in time for the next refresh? (that timeline seems crazy tight unless Apple is planning on the current MBP having a long run, doesn't it?)
 

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
10,939
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While it's true I haven't encountered any slowness, and I know that programs allocate ram whether or not they need it, I'm just concerned about the amount of time I have before I start to get slowdown. I have both open (with multiple tabs and projects) at the same time as I do mail, safari, finder with multiple tabs, etc.
When a program is not being currently used, its data will be either compressed or evicted from RAM and reloaded back when the program becomes active again. In a modern OS, with a fast SSD, this happens with virtually no slowdown. Not to mention that APFS is coming, which is designed to have very low latencies. So you can have as many applications open as you want without encountering any major slowdowns. Having loads of RAM has barely any effect here, because the times needed to reload app data from disk are not only super fast but can also be masked by transition effects etc.

Instead, if you actually want to use all the 32GB RAM, e.g. actively run all those applications at the same time — your limiting factor will be the CPU and its cache. If you have a lot of processes accessing a lot or RAM all over the place, there will be constant cache misses and your performance will suffer. As I said before, in order to utilise 32GB or more of DDR RAM, one really needs a quad core+ CPU with quad-chanel memory controllers and a lot of cache — and also tasks that can make good use of all of that infrastructure. An alternative of course is changing the RAM technology, e.g. use stacked RAM with lower latency and higher bandwidth.
 

JMacHack

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2017
419
484
When a program is not being currently used, its data will be either compressed or evicted from RAM and reloaded back when the program becomes active again. In a modern OS, with a fast SSD, this happens with virtually no slowdown. Not to mention that APFS is coming, which is designed to have very low latencies. So you can have as many applications open as you want without encountering any major slowdowns. Having loads of RAM has barely any effect here, because the times needed to reload app data from disk are not only super fast but can also be masked by transition effects etc.

Instead, if you actually want to use all the 32GB RAM, e.g. actively run all those applications at the same time — your limiting factor will be the CPU and its cache. If you have a lot of processes accessing a lot or RAM all over the place, there will be constant cache misses and your performance will suffer. As I said before, in order to utilise 32GB or more of DDR RAM, one really needs a quad core+ CPU with quad-chanel memory controllers and a lot of cache — and also tasks that can make good use of all of that infrastructure. An alternative of course is changing the RAM technology, e.g. use stacked RAM with lower latency and higher bandwidth.
Interesting, thanks for the reply.
 

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
10,939
5,428
Does that mean the analysts predicting 32GB RAM are banking on Intel being able to release a CPU capable of supporting LPDDR4 in time for the next refresh? (that timeline seems crazy tight unless Apple is planning on the current MBP having a long run, doesn't it?)
I'd guess that these analysts assume that Apple will offer an MBP config with desktop DDR4 RAM in addition to one with LPDDR3 RAM.
 
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lJoSquaredl

macrumors 6502
Mar 26, 2012
326
100
Just curious, what are people doing that requires more than 16gb of RAM? I've worked with some pretty intense projects up to about 25-30mins long in FCPX and I don't even think I was using half my RAM yet. What lines of work require that much system RAM?
 

JMacHack

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2017
419
484
Just curious, what are people doing that requires more than 16gb of RAM? I've worked with some pretty intense projects up to about 25-30mins long in FCPX and I don't even think I was using half my RAM yet. What lines of work require that much system RAM?
There's quite a bit of work people do using virtual machines that I know of, and editing/creating music and 5K and 8K video are all really ram-intensive projects.
 

Mefisto

macrumors 65816
Mar 9, 2015
1,310
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Finland
There was a link posted on this forum (somewhere, I've since forgotten where it was) where a guy explained and demonstrated how far one can get with 16 gigs of RAM. As I recall, he ran quite a few applications, VM's and who knows what else concurrently, and it wasn't easy to max out the RAM usage.

Then again, I might be misremembering some details. If anyone knows the link I speak of, I'd like to read it again.
 
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