Which MacBook Pro Retina 13" should I purchase?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by RandomAccessMem, Mar 13, 2015.

  1. RandomAccessMem macrumors newbie

    Mar 9, 2015
    I am upgrading from a Mid-2010 MBP, and will be using programs like Photoshop, Cinema 4D and Maya, as well as graphics intensive games and Bootcamp. I am planning to buy the high-spec tier, but should I get the i7 configuration? Will it make much of a difference with what I use it for? Also should I get a 16-GB RAM Upgrade? I currently have 16Gb RAM on my 2010MBP, along with a 1TB SSDHD Hybrid.
  2. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Among 13" rMBPs, the i7 upgrade is useless because it's only a dual core CPU like the i5s.

    16GB should come in useful for Cinema 4D and Maya.

    If you play graphics intensive games, no 13" rMBP will suit you. You will need a 15" rMBP with 750M at the minimum. Integrated cards don't play graphics intensive games well like BF4.
  3. Android300zx macrumors regular

    Jan 13, 2012
    Please elaborate on the "i7 is useless.." statement. I'm not too familiar with this kind of stuff (when it comes to cpu specs).

    You might save me some dollars this week.
  4. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    Although not updated for the current gen of CPUS, Arstechnica has done some comparisons of previous generations:



    In both cases, the conclusion was: there are a FEW situations where getting an i7 is worth the extra money: frequent video editing, 3D modeling, and use-cases where you will be constantly hitting the CPU hard. For basic photo editing, web browsing, e-mail, word processing and non-intensive programming (like most app development, unless it's intensive modeling), the i7 spec bump is not worth it.

    That said: from your original post, it sounds like you might be one of those users who would actually benefit from an i7 upgrade. Though, the performance increase might be negligible anyway owing to the i7 on laptops being dual core only.

    The i7 does suck more power when it's pushed, so battery life will suffer. But if you push your laptops hard, you're probably aware of this and are prepared for it anyway.
  5. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Both the i5s and i7s offered in the 13" rMBPs are dual core with 4 threads.

    There is almost zero difference between them in performance.


    False. The Broadwell-U i5 and i7 that Apple uses all have the same TDP.
  6. RandomAccessMem thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 9, 2015
    See, I'd like to know if anyone can confirm this who owns an i7 rMBP 13", how much faster does power drain?
  7. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Thats impossible to tell...

    It will depend on minute to minute usage background apps blah blah blah. Also because an i7 is slightly faster with some things finishing quicker will actually work out as better for battery drain...

    Apple rate them teh same thats good enough for me not to worry about it.

    As has been also said the i7 is just not worth the money compared to the i5 on these dual cores for almost any use case.
  8. RandomAccessMem thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 9, 2015
    Another question is in my case, would waiting for a Skylake rMBP be worth the wait?
  9. geoelectric macrumors 6502


    May 19, 2008
    Yes, unless you want one enough now that it's not. It's not really something anyone can answer for you.

    There's always something better on the horizon. In this case the horizon is probably a little nearer than usual.

    Still, rule of thumb remains: wait as long as you can until you can't wait anymore, then buy and don't second-guess yourself.
  10. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    I do.

    13" rMBP late-2013 2.8GHz i7, 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD.

    And also a 13" rMBP early-2015 with 3.1GHz i7. 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD.

    I get about 7-8.5 hours on a full charge under normal usage (Spotify, Safari with no Flash, Pages/Word, Terminal and Xcode).
  11. RandomAccessMem thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 9, 2015
    Thanks for this.
  12. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    PS I didn't really need the i7, but since the upgrade wasn't that pricey, I went for it just for the sake of maxing things out.

    I wouldn't recommend the i7 to anyone though, considering that it's a dual core part like the i5.
  13. ZBoater macrumors G3


    Jul 2, 2007
    Sunny Florida
    This question of "worth" of the i5 vs the i7 comes up every time there's a new generation. And the answer is the same. "Worth" is relative to YOU. To some people, it is not "worth" it. Whether it is "worth" it to you depends on whether

    1. You want the fastest model available. Because the i7 IS faster than the i5. Yes, a little. But faster nonetheless.

    2. You can afford the price difference.

    To some people, paying the extra $ to have the fastest model available is not "worth" it. Their idea of "worth" might be different than yours or mine. To me, it is absolutely "worth it". Every. Single. Penny. Because I want the best possible performance and I don't want to leave anything on the table. So I will pay the extra few dollars and get the little extra "oomph". 5%. 7%. Whatever.

    The other arguments against the i7 are the battery drain and the temperatures. This has been beaten to death. No, Apple will not design and sell a machine that melts. But the i7 will consume a "little" more battery than the i5, because, of course, it is faster, so it needs more juice. This should also play into your calculation. If you want that extra % of battery life, although it might not be much, then choose the i5.

    Whether it is "worth" it is something only YOU can answer since the concept of worth is relative to your own situation. If you are asking ME whether I think it is worth it, then yes. Absolutely. To me it is.

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12 March 13, 2015