Will I regret buying a 13 MBPr with 8Gb of RAM ?

Dr. McKay

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 20, 2010
664
47
Belgium, Europe
Looking to buy a 13" MBPr. I will certainly go for the 256Gb SSD but am still in doubt as to the memory.
It comes with 8Gb as standard. My usage will not include pro apps, although I will use iMovie sporadically, as well as some light Indesign-Illustrator-Photoshop work.

On Apple's site, it says multitasking is no problem at all with 8Gb, but if you're going to be using apps like FCP, it is advisable to go for 16Gb as this can not be upgraded later on.

So, taking my usage into account, and considering I would like to continue using it for the next 4 years, will I regret going for only 8Gb ? I live in Belgium, so it's in euro over here. An extra 8Gb would set me back 240 euro, which amounts to about 270 dollars.
 

BrettApple

macrumors 65816
Apr 3, 2010
1,102
396
Heart of the midwest
My usage will not include pro apps, although I will use iMovie sporadically, as well as some light Indesign-Illustrator-Photoshop work.

I live in Belgium, so it's in euro over here. An extra 8Gb would set me back 240 euro, which amounts to about 270 dollars.
For these reasons I see zero issues going with 8GB. If you were working in pro apps day in and day out sure, it might make sense, but it would also make sense to go with the 15" rMBP too.

I actually do run pro apps on my 2013 13" rMBP with 8GB of RAM and I have no issues whatsoever running the Adobe Suite, Logic Pro X & Final Cut Pro. Even with multiple projects going. Heck, my 2007 iMac with 4GB RAM still gets by for basic iMove/Photoshop+InDesign work.

If you do start running low on RAM, the SSD is crazy fast so it's nowhere near as big of a deal as it would have been in the past with swapping to a slow HDD. But I wouldn't worry about it for your normal usage 90% of the time. I have to try really hard to slow mine down, and the new ones are even faster.
 

fisherking

macrumors 604
Jul 16, 2010
7,183
2,133
ny somewhere
i agree, 8gb will be fine. if you ever feel things are...sluggish, you can reboot, and open only the app you're working with (ie imovie). but overall...should be good...
 

marshallbedsaul

macrumors 6502a
Nov 14, 2007
846
43
Maryland
You are similar to me with your purchase cycle., so I opted for an 8gb system. I bought a base model system rmbp, for 1099.00
I will upgrade the SSD on my own, and be happy with everything.
Apps if used so far or had open with others
photoshop, steam,word.- no real problems
chrome video playback with photoshop open no issues
safari, chrom,itunes and photoshop open no issues

Im not a heavy user, so hope this helps.
 

dogslobber

macrumors 68040
Oct 19, 2014
3,868
5,850
Apple Campus, Cupertino CA
Looking to buy a 13" MBPr. I will certainly go for the 256Gb SSD but am still in doubt as to the memory.
It comes with 8Gb as standard. My usage will not include pro apps, although I will use iMovie sporadically, as well as some light Indesign-Illustrator-Photoshop work.

On Apple's site, it says multitasking is no problem at all with 8Gb, but if you're going to be using apps like FCP, it is advisable to go for 16Gb as this can not be upgraded later on.

So, taking my usage into account, and considering I would like to continue using it for the next 4 years, will I regret going for only 8Gb ? I live in Belgium, so it's in euro over here. An extra 8Gb would set me back 240 euro, which amounts to about 270 dollars.
Yes, you will; get the 16GB so you don't regret it in the years to come. Some will try to convince you that only having 8GB is what you need as that's probably what they're stuck on.
 

Rigby

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2008
5,183
5,120
San Jose, CA
Looking to buy a 13" MBPr. I will certainly go for the 256Gb SSD but am still in doubt as to the memory.
It comes with 8Gb as standard. My usage will not include pro apps, although I will use iMovie sporadically, as well as some light Indesign-Illustrator-Photoshop work.
For these applications 8GB will be just fine. I have 16GB myself, but that's only because I have to run virtual machines for development work.
 

Alameda

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2012
623
110
Yes, you will; get the 16GB so you don't regret it in the years to come. Some will try to convince you that only having 8GB is what you need as that's probably what they're stuck on.
You just told someone to spend hundreds of dollars without giving any good reason at all.

I've been using a MacBook Air with 4 GB without any problems. I think 8 GB is more than necessary.
 

joe-h2o

macrumors 6502a
Jun 24, 2012
997
445
For these applications 8GB will be just fine. I have 16GB myself, but that's only because I have to run virtual machines for development work.
Even then 16GB is not essential. I have an 8GB 13" and run VMs on it for work purposes.

This pervasive myth that 8GB is somehow "too small for serious work" is all-too prevalent.
 

joe-h2o

macrumors 6502a
Jun 24, 2012
997
445
They used to say 4GB was enough. And Billy Gates said 640K was enough for any man.
RAM requirements have clearly gone up over time, but in 2015 we are not at the point where 16 GB is considered the baseline - 8 GB is more than enough and has been for some time. There are obviously specific use cases where more RAM is necessary, like running multiple simultaneous VMs, but for the vast majority of people running normal software including things like photoshop, basic movie editing (1080p max) and so on, 8 GB is more than enough, especially with the increasing prevalence of SSDs making swap access less punitive than it once was (but obviously not transparent).

Edit: typo
 

Alameda

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2012
623
110
Depends on how many VMs you need to run simultaneously and how much RAM you assign to them.
Sure, a virtual machine that boots an additional instance of an operating system is a case where you double your RAM use with each instance. So if you need to switch between Mac and Windows throughout your workday, 8 GB is still enough but you've halved your memory to 4 GB per OS, so you might want 16.

Or maybe if you boot a lot of VM's for a very specific purpose, maybe you'll need a lot of RAM. But these are specialized examples.

On the other hand, if you're buying a Mac to operate as a Macintosh desktop, you probably will not consume 8 GB of physical RAM, and even if you did, it will page out very fast. On my Mac Air, with 4 GB, I ran all the office apps and two browsers and Photoshop and a few other apps all concurrently, and the Activity Monitor app never showed paging taking place.
 

Rigby

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2008
5,183
5,120
San Jose, CA
Or maybe if you boot a lot of VM's for a very specific purpose, maybe you'll need a lot of RAM. But these are specialized examples.
Yes. If you read my previous reply, I agree with you. :) For the use cases mentioned by the OP, 8GB is plenty. Running, say, a single Windows VM for something like MS Office is not a problem either.
 
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RoboWarriorSr

macrumors 6502a
Feb 23, 2013
885
50
8 GB of RAM should be enough but if you have the cash to upgrade to 16 GB (and I mean like $200 extra cash you won't mind spending, not for "future-proofing") it may benefit your work load. Initially I wanted to upgrade to 16 GB but the only time I have ever thought of needing more than 8 GB of RAM was when using virtual machine, heavy multitasking otherwise I didn't see a drop in performance even when swapping (it might be me used to swapping on HDD machines with the SSD so fast, then again a "bogged down" i5 is certainly faster than a bogged down Core 2 Duo). If anything I would like to have 16 GB of RAM just so I can not see my SSD space temporary go down :D
 

mjturner

macrumors newbie
Aug 23, 2011
15
4
Godalming, United Kingdom
You are similar to me with your purchase cycle., so I opted for an 8gb system. I bought a base model system rmbp, for 1099.00
I will upgrade the SSD on my own, and be happy with everything.
Don't forget, the SSD in current rMBPs is not easily upgradeable. Although the SSD itself is easy to swap, AFAIK there are currently no third party products that use the Apple proprietary connector.
 

MarcoCapa

macrumors regular
Jun 16, 2013
220
7
Will you regret purchasing a MacBook? This is the right question
Besides that 8 go for normal use is fine in my case
But for the little bit more try a refurbished 15 inch
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Dec 8, 2009
8,551
1,661
Italy
You just told someone to spend hundreds of dollars without giving any good reason at all.

I've been using a MacBook Air with 4 GB without any problems. I think 8 GB is more than necessary.
oh, its quite easy with someone else's money ...
I agree with you, 8 Gb are more than enough for OP needs, and the run to have more RAM year after year finished a good 4 years ago, when 8 Gb became the right level for almost every non-memory intensive task.
 

T5BRICK

macrumors G3
Aug 3, 2006
8,103
2,098
Oregon
I will upgrade the SSD on my own

3rd party SSDs are not available, so you are stuck with system pulls off of eBay for the time being.

Yes, you will; get the 16GB so you don't regret it in the years to come. Some will try to convince you that only having 8GB is what you need as that's probably what they're stuck on.
8GB is enough memory for the foreseeable future. By the time 16GB is really required, other non upgradeable components in the computer are going to be bigger issues.
 
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Dr. McKay

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 20, 2010
664
47
Belgium, Europe
Guys, guys... I should have mentioned that I will absolutely not be needing VM's of any kind. I have a Windows gaming desktop I built last December with plenty of power (quad core i5, 8Gb of RAM, GTX970, SSD) so if I need Windows, I'll use that (currently on Win10)...
 

Alameda

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2012
623
110
Guys, guys... I should have mentioned that I will absolutely not be needing VM's of any kind. I have a Windows gaming desktop I built last December with plenty of power (quad core i5, 8Gb of RAM, GTX970, SSD) so if I need Windows, I'll use that (currently on Win10)...
Then it's pretty safe to say that 8GB is plenty. Certainly if the choice is: 16GB/128GB versus 8GB/256GB, the 8/256 is a far better choice. I had 4/256 until two weeks ago and it was fine.

I take a lot of photographs in RAW., which are 25MB each. So I often copy in 20-30 GB of images. It's more than I can store on my internal drive.

What I do is this:
First, I have two external USB hard disks. 2 TB each. These are both Time Machine drives. The Mac automatically alternates between them.
Second, all my photos go to a Photos folder on my Mac's desktop. I copy them into a sub-folder that's named by date.
Third, the Photos folder is excluded from Time Machine backup
Fourth, I manually backup the su folders to a matching folder on the Time Machine drive. Once a folder is backed up to both drives, I can delete it from the Mac SSD when I need the space.
 

Dr. McKay

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 20, 2010
664
47
Belgium, Europe
Then it's pretty safe to say that 8GB is plenty. Certainly if the choice is: 16GB/128GB versus 8GB/256GB, the 8/256 is a far better choice. I had 4/256 until two weeks ago and it was fine.
Then I guess I'll go for the 13" MBPr with 256Gb SSD and 8Gb of RAM. I've got two external drives, one USB2 1,5Tb I'll keep using for my Win10 desktop and another USB2/FW800 2Tb drive I'll be using exclusively for Time Machine and other Mac stuff (will need a USB to FW converter cable, though). Going to buy the MBP and my iPhone 5S 32Gb over the weekend, will give me something to play with :)
 
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