Which 13' Macbook pro retina? 2.4ghz or 2.6ghz ?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jennifer27, Nov 21, 2013.

  1. jennifer27 macrumors newbie

    Nov 21, 2013
    Hi guys,
    I want to place my very first macbook pro retina order via apple online but i cannot decide which model should i go for?
    I will be using it for daily uses such as internet browsing, youtube, emails, facebook and occasionally photo editing in Lightroom 5 and Photo Elements (i am not a pro photographer, just a hobbyist and I shoot in both raw and jpeg)
    I don't do video editing and i am not a gamer.

    I am torn between these two specs :

    2.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    Turbo Boost up to 2.9GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    256GB PCIe-based flash storage1


    2.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    512GB PCIe-based flash storage1

    Please advice this apple newbie and many thanks in advance :)
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    The biggest difference between those two models in real-world application is not the processor, but rather the increased storage. It is not likely that you would notice any difference between the processors in day-to-day use. However, if you have a significant amount of data to store, such as movies, music, photos and other data, the increased storage space may be useful to you.
  3. Sdreed91 macrumors 6502

    Oct 10, 2011
    The specs are so close in Turbo Boost you probably wouldn't notice the difference between the two. If you have the money go for the 2.6. If you can not afford that then I recommend just going for the 2.4, without any heavy CPU taxing work the 2.4 should be sufficient.
  4. Patriks7 macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2008
    I'm pretty sure I read that the 2.6 has a slightly faster graphics chip. Does this affect the performance in any noticeable way?
  5. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    They have the same Iris 5100 with 1GB of integrated VRAM.
  6. Idarzoid macrumors 6502

    Mar 15, 2013
    It comes down to the amount of storage space you need, all other specs are virtually the same.

    You mentioned you shoot in RAW, where do you save these RAW files? If they are going to be on the MacBook, then maybe 512GB would be ideal for you. If it's stored elsewhere, go for the one with 256GB storage.

    How much is the price difference between these two?
  7. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    I have the 2.4, and my uses are similar except for the photo editing. As a point of reference, I barely make a dent in my CPU usage and use slightly less than half of the 8gb of RAM.

    Consider your storage needs carefully as changing the SSD isn't easy.

    The 2.4ghz is very well priced for its specs, especially if you can get the education discount. I plan to keep this machine for 3-5 years or longer of it lasts.
  8. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Sep 8, 2009
    Most people will not need anything more than the base processor. That 8GB/256GB 13" model is such a good value.
  9. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    Just looking at posts here, it seems to be one of the most popular. Makes me wonder if they'll drop the 4/128 at some point.
  10. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    Right, but are you sure that one isn't clocked a bit faster?
  11. klause10 macrumors newbie

    Dec 15, 2012
    I went with the 2.6. Not because i needed it but because i wanted the 512gb ssd. Don't see much difference In the two or the 2.8 i7 for that matter. If you need storage and portability go 2.6 + 512gb ssd and if you need power go 15".
  12. GTRagnarok macrumors newbie

    Dec 4, 2010
    The one in the 2.6GHz actually clocks up to 1.2GHz instead of 1.1GHz. A very slight difference, but it pushed me over the fence and I got the 2.6GHz CPU.
  13. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I seriously doubt any user would notice much, if any, difference in day-to-day use.
  14. jondunford macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2013
    Going for a poo Moderator
    if you go with 16gb ram do you get more graphics ram like you did with intel 3000/4000?
  15. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    No, the graphics are the same.
  16. AlecMyrddyn macrumors 6502

    Dec 5, 2008
    Southern Maine
    The Iris 5100 does use some part of the system RAM for itself. Mavericks varies how much it uses depending on how much it needs and is available. So far, it appears that it maxes out of 1 GB from what I've read.
  17. mrweirdo macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2005
    I'm actually trying to decided between the 2.4ghz and 2.6ghz ones myself with the only slight difference being 16GB ram on the 2.6ghz. Might as well since its only $200 more over 8gb on the 2.6 Much like yourself I'd like to get some life out this next computer, preferably 5 years. I got 7 out of my current macbook.

    While I dont do much with my current mac. I'd like to be able to do a little photo editing, play a few games like L4D, run the occasional VM, maybe some audio stuff, otherwise its all basic usage.

    I also wish they offered the 512 SSD in the 2.4ghz model.
  18. foodle macrumors 6502

    May 14, 2008
    Pennsylvania, USA
    OP, go for the 2.4GHz. You will not notice any difference with the 2.6GHz besides a lighter wallet.
  19. Beezy253 macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2013
    Tacoma, WA
    I went with the 2.6 because the 2.4 was too close to my 2009 cMBB, which was 2.26.

    $100, eh, WTH, why not? lol
  20. IronManFanatic, Jan 23, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2014

    IronManFanatic macrumors newbie


    Jan 11, 2014
    Wow, I'm in the exact situation as you! (And I have been in the same situation since November 2013!). I remain undecided even after returning the 2.4/8/256 model for the 2.6/8/512 after I also returned AppleCare (which I never wanted, but was pressured into buying for $190) with a 10% discount on both machines from a local retailer. (My 512GB model is still sealed). 1600-1800 was my absolute limit in purchasing a new laptop, after selling my old HP dm4 3011-tx for $400 after using it for 1.5 years.

    After buying the 256GB model, my heart sat in contempt and was graceful at the same time, and I was wondering if I should get the 512GB for peace of mind in local storage (although I didn't want to because of the AUD $350 price difference). I could have gotten a 16GB upgrade for $220 or around 3-4 TBs worth of HDD USB 3.0 storage. (Not that I can see 16GB or 3-4TB of additional storage being beneficial for my uses any time soon; I only do a bit of DSLR Photography and Video processing, IT work (Slight Development, a little Photoshop, emailing), uni, 30GB music library (I stopped downloading my songs - the only things iTunes auto-downloads are podcasts - I just stream the rest mainly via Pandora, SoundCloud, YouTube and MixCloud now), heavy web browsing (which 8GBs handles quite adequately, it's ample RAM for my needs - Just take a look at this guy who stress tested his 2.4/8/256 config, 16GB is just a huge overkill for me atm and by the time I may need more RAM, my computer will be due for an upgrade any ways, i.e. 2-3 years). I currently have a 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD config in my Desktop and a backup external 2TB Drive, which has around 206GBs free. (It's due for a clean out). I have a really bad habit of keeping a lot of old photos, videos and junk. I really have to learn to let go of things. It feels too guilty spending an extra $350 on an extra 256GBs even though it is running via a PCI-e interface, I just don't see the value in hindsight. Like the saying goes, if you really knew you needed 512GB, you would have already jumped at it and not waited it out on a forum waiting for someone to tell you what to do. Same goes with RAM and CPU to that extent. The ones who require more powerful and abundant hardware will know it from previous experience. The normal config models will offer exceptional performance and storage to the everyday consumer; regardless of choice.

    The 2.4/8/256 config is the best-bang-for-buck atm WITHOUT A DOUBT - I even managed to scrape in a 10% discount, so it brought it down from Apple's Education pricing at $1729 to $1663 in the end! AppleCare isn't needed where I live, because of 24+ months Statutory warranty; enforced by law. If it wasn't for the crispy Hi-Res Retina display, 5100 graphics, LDDR3 RAM (over LPDDR3 in the Air), Full HDMI port, I'd be looking at the 13" Airs. The 2.4/8/256 also has the best power-to-battery life efficiency for its family range.

    Which config did you end up with?

    It's only 100MHz faster, that speed is so negligible it should be taken with a tiny grain of salt. The human eyeball wouldn't notice the difference even if you tried your hardest to pay attention to it. Certainly not worth the extra $350 jump in cost for the 512 model. Intel markets the CPUs with the same RRP; US $315. 2.4GHz, 2.6GHz, yet, you pay an extra ~$110-130 for something recommended at the same price by Intel. The i7 is even worse. It's valued at $426 (and additional $114 over the 2.4GHz/2.6GHz CPUs) by Intel, yet Apple charges an extra $330-350 for it. It's pure money making bullsht - you know that 'exceptional' Apple service other people are getting, yeah, well you just paid their wages. Very overpriced hardware for what you get, the Bang-to-buck ratio exponentially becomes less and less worthwhile as you crawl through higher ranks of hardware. Another reason to stick to baseline config; 2.4/8/256. You came from a MacBook Pro and you got one, don't fall for Apple's devious tricks of making you feel like you didn't receive the 'best and brightest package'. It's all marketing tricks deployed right throughout their site, products, services, stores and authorised retailers too for that fact! By all means, if you need the extra grunt or storage, go ahead, light your money on fire.

    Yes it's 1.2GHz, but the difference is negligible over 1.1GHz. The difference is so negliable, I can't even think of an analogy to compare it to in the physical world. You might scrape in an additional frame per second in a game, if anything, but this isn't a notebook intended for gaming, it's running integrated graphics.
  21. fskywalker macrumors 65816


    Nov 6, 2009
    What about the 2.4/16/256 model? Ram cannot be upgraded later since it is soldered in the motherboard, so suggest that upgrade over a faster CPU ( performance gain will not be that big) or bigger drive ( you can buy a cheap external USB 3.0 drive)

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