Which CPU on rMBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by tooobe, Nov 13, 2013.

  1. tooobe macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #1
    I'm having second thoughts about which version of the retina MacBook Pro to order. I know I want the 256GB model with 16GB RAM, but am unsure about which CPU to choose - the 2.4GHz i5 model or the 2.6GHz i5 model. I know I don't need the i7 model.

    My usage is not really going to be that heavy, no video editing or anything like that, but I do usually have a lot going on at the same time on my laptop. A lot of windows open and system apps/addons running in the background.

    The main thing I'm looking to do is "future proof" my purchase. I know there is no such thing in technology, but I'm looking to keep this computer for about 5 years. The difference is about 120$ and both the CPU and GPU are clocked ~10% higher. Would this affect my experience and/or the longevity of the machine?

    Any opinions would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Tears Apart macrumors 6502a

    Tears Apart

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    #2
    no difference perceived/not worth the money - go for the 2.4 GHz : )
     
  3. tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #3
    That's been my reasoning as well. It's not going to be that in five years, software I want to run will not run on the 2.4ghz CPU but will run on the 2.6 CPU, right? But 16GB of RAM could make that difference, right? And make the machine feel fast a while longer? Plus the money saved on not upgrading the CPU could go towards buying a new machine a little bit sooner...

    And the slightly GPU would not help with the choppy animations I've been reading about anyways, or would it?
     
  4. tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #5
    Thanks for replying :)

    I'm well aware of the performance difference, just can't decide if it's worth it. I read this thread (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1661211) and the replies in there all seemed to think it is worth it. Still can't decide. :)

    If it helped with choppy animations for example, it would totally be worth it. If there is zero real world difference (not counting theoretical benchmarks) it would not...
     
  5. empireofpassion macrumors newbie

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    Nov 13, 2013
    #6
  6. qawsed macrumors regular

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    Jul 9, 2009
    #7
    If your doing basic tasks unto and including watching HD video etc, any macbook pro CPU from the past 5 years would be perfect. Generally I go with what I can afford, and that was the 2.4/8gb/256. It's fast and great.
     
  7. tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #8
    Yeah, i'm coming from the late 2010 MacBook Air with a Core2Duo processor so any upgrade will be huge. I don't really feel constrained by the CPU in my Air, the big bottleneck I feel is the 4GB of RAM, I'm constantly hitting swap file activity (even if not by much, I still have to manage what I have open which I would rather not). I do watch a lot of HD video, and keep a lot of stuff including webpages open simultaneously. Nothing more demanding than that though.

    I'm sort of leaning towards the 2.4 CPU, but still indecisive...

    Thanks for all the replies though, I feel that every reply helps me get a little closer to a decision!
     
  8. qawsed macrumors regular

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  9. Kevclark1985 macrumors member

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    Jul 2, 2013
    #10
    In my opinion the cpu upgrade is not worth it, and I don't think the upgrade will future proof you in any beneficial way. If the 2.4 CPU is struggling in a few years the 2.6 is not going to cope with no issues...

    I'd go for the 2.4, that was my choice and I think it's the correct one. If you need more processing power for the tasks you do, then make a proper jump up to the i7, you say you def don't need that though, which means you def don't need the 0.2 extra processing power now.
     
  10. tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #11
    Thanks, sounds like sound reasoning. I think I've decided on the 2.4! Thanks for all the great replies.
     
  11. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Atlanta
    #12
    On our rMBPs, we use up around 256GB for boot, OS, apps, and only a small amount of data (email). Our large libraries of music, clip art, and photos are all on external Thunderbolt drives.

    Serious reconsider 256GB as an SSD. Note how Apple is going to 500GB and 1TB SSDs in the newer models.
     
  12. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #13
    Dunno, 256GB is absolutely sufficient for all my data, emails, work stuff (including the material for courses that I fought over the last few years), plus a bunch of series, movies, music, photos and a bootcamp partition with several large games. In fact, I still have over 50GB free. I'd say it all depends on the particular needs. I don't see myself needing more any time soon.
     
  13. tooobe, Nov 13, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2013

    tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #14
    Don't know if you misunderstood/misread my post, but I've already decided on the 256GB SSD. I have 256GB currently on the MacBook Air, so I know it will be fine (of course I would like the 512GB model, but my budget isn't that big). I have external storage for any media I would keep (I don't really store that much media, stream most of it nowadays) and I currently have about 70-100GB free on the SSD so it will be fine.

    This thread isn't about choosing the SSD size though, as I've already made that choice. Thanks for the consideration though :)
     
  14. rMBP2013 macrumors member

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    Oct 22, 2013
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    Sydney
    #15
    Interesting choice about going with 16 GB RAM but not going for more HD.

    In my opinion, the extra MHZ won't make much real-life difference depending upon your usage. I recommend saving your money.

    But it really depends upon your budget as the extra 10% GPU power does help with running the retina display with more smoothness.

    It's $100 extra and it may even improve your resale value down the road, perhaps.

    ----------

    You're watching lots of HD videos? Definitely go for the 2.6 GHZ with slightly better GPU. That would be noticeable and is worth the extra $100.
     
  15. tooobe, Nov 14, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2013

    tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #16
    Interesting points! Do you have any concrete proof that the extra CPU and GPU improves on the choppiness? Personal experience? I'm feeling that since my old Core2Duo handles HD video perfectly fine (even 1080p YouTube, although the fans go berserk), the 2.4GHz i5 CPU would handle it fine as well. But then again, I haven't used a retina rMBP for any extended period of time... Don't think it will add to the second hand value at all really. At least that's been my experience.
     
  16. rMBP2013 macrumors member

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    Oct 22, 2013
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    Sydney
    #17
    Personal experience: yes.

    I compared the base 13" retina at the Mac Store with the 2.6 GHZ 13" that I currently have. The lag is more noticeable on the display model at the Mac store compared to what I have.

    Now it is possible that it's all in my head, but extra GPU definitely will not hurt the performance.

    Ask yourself: is $100 going to be over your budget? If you can afford it, go for it!
     
  17. koppie644 macrumors regular

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    Oct 4, 2011
    #18
    I think there is no need for 16GB for a duo core machine. On the 15inch, you may need it

    The $1499 model achieves a perfect balance between price and performance




    ----------

    In my opinion, neither the CPU nor GPU will run at full speed most of the time. It won't affect smoothness at all. People who claimed it knew the GPU is better in the first place, it's mostly psychological

    But the GPU of different generations do make a lot of difference, HD4000 vs HD5100

    I have a 15 inch Haswell rMBP and I upgraded the CPU from 2.0GHz HQ4750 to 2.3GHz HQ4850 but it really really did not make any difference for me
     
  18. Fulanito macrumors newbie

    Fulanito

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    Spain
    #19
    Interest thread this one. I have the same doubts myself.


    Yesterday in a store with a rMBP 13" 2.4/8gb/256SSD I saw an almost unnoticeable stutter changing desktops and in some cases. But my "tests" were very limited. What does it mean? It means I'll go another day to test it a little bit more.

    Do you mean instead of moving from 8 to 16 gb you would move to 512 gb SSD? Or you stay with 8gb and 256gb?


    If you are going for 512 gb (and/or 16gb) and moving to 2.6, wouldn't be better the 15 inch base model? Considering portability is not an issue, in my case, and educational purchase.

    Thanks
     
  19. tooobe, Nov 14, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2013

    tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #20
    Good point about the GPU not running at full speed all the time anyways. Interesting that some people can't seem to read what I wrote several times in this thread - I know I want 16GB of RAM since it is non-expandable and I'm already limited by RAM in my current laptop. Just like 4GB was enough a couple of years ago but isn't anymore, 8GB is probably fine now but who knows in 3 years. I know I would be pushing 8 easily right now.

    As for the storage, I currently have 256GB and doing fine. And storage IS expandable,either by external drive, NAS or in worst case by replacing the SSD aftermarket.

    I decided on the 2.4GHz. I'm sure I'll be perfectly happy with it!
     
  20. koppie644 macrumors regular

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    Oct 4, 2011
    #22
    Well, you got to understand that most people including me don't read all the postings before starting blablabla, haha. One important thing is that the PCs (including MAC) are not the centrepiece now, it's about cellphones and tablets. We won't see significant CPU speed bump (because we are running out of instruction-level parallelism) and significantly more memory usage (because Microsoft is trying to put Windows into a tablet called Surface Pro and Apple doesn't want those Airs it sold to become useless very soon). But still nice to have 16GB
     
  21. tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #23
    Haha, I'm starting to realize that :p

    16GB WILL be nice to have! I'll never have to close a program again (unless I want to) :)
     
  22. michelg1970 macrumors regular

    michelg1970

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    Jul 26, 2011
    Location:
    Gouda - The Netherlands
    #24
    I went the other way: doubted between 8 GB or 16 GB. Ended up with the 2.6 and 512 GB SSD because for $ 300 more I had a) a faster processor, b) slightly faster graphics and c) 512 instead of 256 GB. IMHO a steal compared to other upgrade options.

    But then again - that was my idea... Everyone has its own needs and ideas and usage.

    Good luck! In any case the rMBP won't disappoint you. After 3 days working with it I could not go back to my i7 2.9 MBP 13 inch (although faster) coz the screen is soooo much better... but then again - that's my opinion :)
     
  23. tooobe thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 3, 2008
    #25
    I just went with my experience which is that every mac I have ever owned has felt slow because of the memory being insufficient. Rarely have I felt that the CPU speed has been the factor that made the computer feel slow. If my previous MBA had more memory than 4GB I could have easily have kept it for a few more years, and the jump to 8GB didn't feel like enough of a jump for me. And since I don't "need" the increased SSD storage (even though it would of course be nice), the memory increase felt more sensible (for me) than any other upgrade option. If I went for the 2.6 and 512 SSD I would feel compelled to purchase the memory upgrade as well, but that would end up expensive. Hence, I went with memory. I guess we'll see who was right in about 4-5 years. But until then I'm sure we'll both be extremely happy with our respective MBP:s! :)
     

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