Which would you buy? slower 4 core or faster 2 core 13"?

Which chip for standard 13" use?

  • Lower speed quad core

    Votes: 20 62.5%
  • Higher speed dual core

    Votes: 12 37.5%

  • Total voters
    32

ls1dreams

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2009
500
174
So,

With Coffee Lake around the corner, and a potential 15w quad core chip, I'm curious if you were given this option, which would you buy for a 13" macbook?

15w quad core, lower single threaded ipc/cpu speed (i.e. 4 x 2.0ghz), or
28w dual core, higher single threaded ipc/cpu speed (i.e. 2 x 3.5ghz)

My usage is pretty boring lately with mostly web browsing, media playback, etc. I do plan to dabble in some code though, where a quad core might be more useful for compiling Swift in Xcode.
 

jerryk

macrumors 601
Nov 3, 2011
4,841
2,397
SF Bay Area
Quad core for me, but that little power will not meet my performance needs. The quad i7 is better for me. And 15 inch display.
 

itsamacthing

macrumors 6502a
Sep 26, 2011
824
453
Bangkok
Depends on your use.. a lot of apps are not multithreaded. If you only browse the internet and do email..get an iPad Pro
 

leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
9,963
4,550
I am more then sure that 15W quad cores will have higher single-threaded throughput than the current dual cores.

In a hypothetical situation you describe, I'd obviously choose the one with better single-threaded performance. A 15 W CPU that's sacrifices single-thread for multithread would of be a very narrow product. Not even sure about its niche. Low-powered multi-CPU servers?
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 68030
Aug 14, 2015
2,758
2,433
Land of Smiles
So,

With Coffee Lake around the corner, and a potential 15w quad core chip, I'm curious if you were given this option, which would you buy for a 13" macbook?

15w quad core, lower single threaded ipc/cpu speed (i.e. 4 x 2.0ghz), or
28w dual core, higher single threaded ipc/cpu speed (i.e. 2 x 3.5ghz)

My usage is pretty boring lately with mostly web browsing, media playback, etc. I do plan to dabble in some code though, where a quad core might be more useful for compiling Swift in Xcode.
Hardly any quad core aps more of benchmark appeal than IRL especially for your usage
 

ls1dreams

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2009
500
174
I am more then sure that 15W quad cores will have higher single-threaded throughput than the current dual cores.

In a hypothetical situation you describe, I'd obviously choose the one with better single-threaded performance. A 15 W CPU that's sacrifices single-thread for multithread would of be a very narrow product. Not even sure about its niche. Low-powered multi-CPU servers?
You're definitely wrong on this. All of the 15w TDP chips right now have a similar burst speed, but not a sustained speed. Geekbench and similar synthetic benchmarks right now are an abysmal test of these chips.

Reference- Linus Torvalds: http://www.realworldtech.com/forum/?threadid=136526&curpostid=136666

The 2.0-2.4ghz macbook non-touch models right now essentially have macbook air like performance, or macbook pro like performance from 4-5 years ago.

As much as I'd love quad core, at this point I'd probably stick with a better dual core machine.
 

leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
9,963
4,550
You're definitely wrong on this. All of the 15w TDP chips right now have a similar burst speed, but not a sustained speed. Geekbench and similar synthetic benchmarks right now are an abysmal test of these chips.

...

As much as I'd love quad core, at this point I'd probably stick with a better dual core machine.
You are perfectly right, but I think that you are also kind of missing the point. Your question was about Coffee Lake. First of all, we don't really know how the Coffee Lake configs will look like. If Intel is really introducing 15W quad-cores, then I am fairly sure that they will completely phase out dual-core models to begin with (save for maybe far low end). I don't see a point in a consumer 15W quad-core CPU, if it sacrifices single-threaded throughput. Most likely what we'll have is quad-core 15W, quad-core 28W and then hexa-core 45W CPUs. And all of them will have better single-threaded throughput (burst and substance) than current generation.
 

TechZeke

macrumors 68020
Jul 29, 2012
2,361
1,969
Rialto, CA
This reminds me of the old days on the notebookreview forums when the hot topic back then for gaming laptops was either to choose between the faster clocked Intel core 2 dual cores like the P9600(2 Cores, 2.66 Ghz) or the slower clocked core 2 quad Q9000(4 cores, 2.00 Ghz).
 

poematik13

macrumors 6502a
Jun 5, 2014
727
298
it depends on if your use cases need a faster clock speed or more cores to spread out rendering tasks.

the current 13" tMBP has a nice 3.5ghz dual i7
 

leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
9,963
4,550
This reminds me of the old days on the notebookreview forums when the hot topic back then for gaming laptops was either to choose between the faster clocked Intel core 2 dual cores like the P9600(2 Cores, 2.66 Ghz) or the slower clocked core 2 quad Q9000(4 cores, 2.00 Ghz).
Which quickly became a non-issue as turbo boost entered the stage :)
 

Adamantoise

macrumors 6502a
Aug 1, 2011
891
112
Depends on your use.. a lot of apps are not multithreaded. If you only browse the internet and do email..get an iPad Pro
Why does everyone keep giving this garbage advice? Some people simply prefer the laptop form factor with a real keyboard pointer and all.

By extension, just get an iPhone if all you do is check email and browse the web right?
 

FrozenDarkness

macrumors 65816
Mar 21, 2009
1,381
465
you know what? I wouldn't be surprised if apple won't even put quad core chips into the 13" mbp. I bet Intel puts crappy graphics solutions into the 4 core chips for thermal reasons and apple just completely skip by them because they want to get the iris pros.
 

NBAasDOGG

macrumors 6502
May 27, 2017
387
603
Netherlands
So,

With Coffee Lake around the corner, and a potential 15w quad core chip, I'm curious if you were given this option, which would you buy for a 13" macbook?

15w quad core, lower single threaded ipc/cpu speed (i.e. 4 x 2.0ghz), or
28w dual core, higher single threaded ipc/cpu speed (i.e. 2 x 3.5ghz)

My usage is pretty boring lately with mostly web browsing, media playback, etc. I do plan to dabble in some code though, where a quad core might be more useful for compiling Swift in Xcode.
"With Coffee Lake around the corner"? lol
You do realize that Coffee Lake with Iris 740/750 for MacBooks won't be ready in 2017! Most probably Q1 or Q2 2018...