When does an integrated graphics card become an issue?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by designscience, Jul 28, 2012.

  1. designscience, Jul 28, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2012

    designscience macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2012
    Location:
    Portland
    #1
    Hello there. I'm looking to replace my aging 2007 MacBook with a brand new MacBook pro, but I am having trouble deciding between the higher spec'd 13" or the low end 15". Even after reading pages of specs, and the handy guides on MacRumors. Honestly, anything is better than the setup I have right now, but I want to make sure before I spend so much money.

    A little about my usage, I'll be primarily be working in PhotoShop, Illustrator, XCode, and either Lightroom or Apeture. I need an optical drive for school and I will eventually be buying an external monitor, so I don't want the retina, even though I spend so much time editing photos. I would like to try out some animation and find a good 3D modeling program to play with, and I would also like to have the capability to play Skyrim and League of Legends in bootcamp.

    Do I really need a dedicated graphics card for any of this? What kind of time difference am I looking at using photoshop heavily or Maya. The high spec'd 13" is looking better and better to me, and it is also a lot more portable. I would love some advice!
     
  2. squeeks macrumors 68040

    squeeks

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Location:
    Florida
    #2
    not sure how well the hd4000 will play skyrim, it will handle everything else fine though. the gt650m plays skyrim really good.
     
  3. IndoX macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    #3
    For photo editing and design you'll definitely benefit from the higher resolution and dedicated graphics card on the 15" base model. Gaming will also improve drastically. So I don't see why you wouldn't get the 15" model.

    You can always up the ram and add an SSD at a later date -- which will be much better than the "high end" 15" that's currently available and it'll also be cheaper.
     
  4. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #4
    Basically this. The hd4000 will do most things well, but it won't be able to keep up for the most demanding things (games, 3d rendering). The gt650m will do everything well.
     
  5. designscience thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2012
    Location:
    Portland
    #5
    You're probably right.

    So, how about getting a refurbished late 2011 15", is the jump between sandy bridge and ivy bridge significant enough for me to want to spend so much extra money? I don't have a lot of money, but I would like this purchase to last me a long time.
     
  6. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #6
    The jump between the two isn't huge, and you probably won't notice it.

    Having said that, the hd4000 isn't going to be unsupported anytime soon. If you're certain that you don't want to game or do 3d modeling on your mac, there's no difference at all between the graphics card in the late 2011 MBP and the 13" 2012 (relatively speaking). If you plan on doing 3d modeling or gaming, get the late 2011 15". The difference between it and a new 13" would be like night and day.
     

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