MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Discussion of anything not related to audio or music production
GreatWhiteEagle
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MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by GreatWhiteEagle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 1:53 pm

I searched the forum and couldn’t find exactly the answer I was looking for so I thought I’d post. I’m going to buy a new mbp with touch bar (to get fastest processing), 16gb ram and 512 ssd. I’m wondering if it’s necessary to get the i7 over the i5?

I’m planning on getting into making ambient stuff that is probably a little synth heavy (currently using Bengal by max for cats and would like to get into OSCiLLOT), use push 2, sample from vinyl, etc. I’m not getting the 15” because I also use this computer at work and I commute by bike so the 13” is very preferable and basically mandatory since the 15” won’t fit in my bike bag. I’ll also upgrade to 16gh ram and 512 ssd.

Thanks for the help!

antic604
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by antic604 » Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:09 pm

GreatWhiteEagle wrote:I searched the forum and couldn’t find exactly the answer I was looking for so I thought I’d post. I’m going to buy a new mbp with touch bar (to get fastest processing), 16gb ram and 512 ssd. I’m wondering if it’s necessary to get the i7 over the i5?

I’m planning on getting into making ambient stuff that is probably a little synth heavy (currently using Bengal by max for cats and would like to get into OSCiLLOT), use push 2, sample from vinyl, etc. I’m not getting the 15” because I also use this computer at work and I commute by bike so the 13” is very preferable and basically mandatory since the 15” won’t fit in my bike bag. I’ll also upgrade to 16gh ram and 512 ssd.

Thanks for the help!
Just get the most powerful computer you can afford, so - in this case - the i7, 16GB RAM ang 512GB SSD - at some point even this won't be enough, because your music grows in complexity and/or the software you'll use will get more performance hungry.

BTW, just curious - how is the MBP's touch bar helping with "fastest processing"? :o
Last edited by antic604 on Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:28 pm, edited 3 times in total.

GreatWhiteEagle
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by GreatWhiteEagle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:15 pm

I’m not sure if it is, which may be another question, but the fastest processors are only available in the touchbar versions (the i7 in the non touch bar is 2.5ghz with turbo to 4.0). I don’t really want the touch bar, I just want the best processor I can get that will last the longest in terms of obsolescence in ableton world. [quote][/quote]

antic604
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by antic604 » Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:33 pm

Does it have to be MBP, though? 13" will have 7th gen dual-core processor, whereas for same money (or less) you could get Razer Blade Stealth or Dell XP 13 with 8th gen quad-core i7 which should be 40-60% faster at least.

https://www.razerzone.com/gaming-laptop ... ealth/shop

http://www.dell.com/en-us/shop/dell-lap ... 03,301,403

GreatWhiteEagle
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by GreatWhiteEagle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:56 pm

I mean that’s a really hard choice. I’ve been using Mac since 2003. My wife uses Mac. We are fully integrated at home with backups and all that, and I really don’t want to go back to windows. Really don’t want to. I realize the price difference is kind of staggering, but I also still, whether just or unjust, view pc as more unreliable. My dad was a pc user until about a year ago, and he would buy nice machines and seemed to have poor reliability. I know it’s crazy, and I fully acknowledge it may not be based in reality, but I don’t know if I can go back.

antic604
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by antic604 » Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:08 pm

GreatWhiteEagle wrote:I mean that’s a really hard choice. I’ve been using Mac since 2003. My wife uses Mac. We are fully integrated at home with backups and all that, and I really don’t want to go back to windows. Really don’t want to. I realize the price difference is kind of staggering, but I also still, whether just or unjust, view pc as more unreliable. My dad was a pc user until about a year ago, and he would buy nice machines and seemed to have poor reliability. I know it’s crazy, and I fully acknowledge it may not be based in reality, but I don’t know if I can go back.
Oh, that's totally fine! As I said, just get the most powerful one you can afford :)

I'd also look around & try to find a quad-core i7 model, but I think that'd have to be a previous one since such CPUs are now only available in 15" models.

yur2die4
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by yur2die4 » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:22 pm

Get the 15". Otherwise just accept that you'll be making some major compromises no matter what the choice is.

GreatWhiteEagle
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by GreatWhiteEagle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:26 pm

What do you foresee as the most likely compromises in the future? I would really like to bump up to the 15", but it would really throw a wrench into how I get to work on my bike and carry all my stuff, and I ride in 90% of the time.

Stromkraft
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by Stromkraft » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:53 pm

GreatWhiteEagle wrote:What do you foresee as the most likely compromises in the future? I would really like to bump up to the 15", but it would really throw a wrench into how I get to work on my bike and carry all my stuff, and I ride in 90% of the time.
Performance obviously. If you do only native Live instruments maybe you can get away with a duocore. If you use third party instruments (plug-ins) they probably will be needing more resources.

With a duocore your production design will need to adapt to the performance limitations at hand. This will likely mean maybe using a higher latency than you'd like, a need to be getting to audio only early and add native mixdown effects and plug-in effects firstly in separate audio only mixdown versions.

This is not a bad way to make music necessarily as it forces you to make decisions. If you need to get back something in, you can merge into the current from the first version sets. Some of this process takes time to learn. Moving quickly can still speed things up to counter this.

All of this takes some discipline, planning and acceptance of the performance limitations you are likely to encounter. If you feel comfortable with making this tradeoff, it may work out for you.

I'm currently on a duocore backup until my quadcore comes back. It's possible, but a bit harder to be spontaneous. If you don't know Live well, it can set you back a bit. I'm 5-6 years in and at this point I know quite a bit about performance issues.
Make some music!

GreatWhiteEagle
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by GreatWhiteEagle » Tue Nov 21, 2017 11:17 pm

I figured and I’m pretty torn. I move my computer to and from work most days,but I’d hate to get 2 years down the road and feel a real need to upgrade. But I may go with 13 because of portability needs and engage in necessary processor efficiency workarounds as they come up. Thanks for all the input!

yur2die4
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by yur2die4 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:00 am

Yeah. As long as you identify and accept that there will be limitations in performance, you'll probably end up having a decent experience. The hard part is that a lot of people don't realize there is a difference in CPUs in the first place. Once you overcome that, and accept and understand what it entails, you should do just fine.

I shouldn't downplay the processor. I7's are still quite powerful no matter which model. It's just the least powerful of the i7's in each gen by a healthy leap.

GreatWhiteEagle
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by GreatWhiteEagle » Wed Nov 22, 2017 2:43 am

Are there concerns with overheating with the current 15”? I have read a few things about the discrete graphics creating excessive heat when running ableton. Still not totally decided....

Tarekith
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by Tarekith » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:54 am

Bought my 15" MBP a few months back, not had any issues with heat and running Live (or any other app). In fact it runs a lot cooler overall than my 2014 rMBP did.

Emanresu0891
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by Emanresu0891 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:26 am

Tarekith wrote:Bought my 15" MBP a few months back, not had any issues with heat and running Live (or any other app). In fact it runs a lot cooler overall than my 2014 rMBP did.
I would expect it to work just fine for you after two years. Theres no proof of longevity with you only owning it for two years and we dont know how hard you push it. Your dedicated graphics might only be in use every few days how do we know.

Some people also go for longevity when they buy an expensive computer, these mac bookpro's are starting to show there un-reliability with a dedicated gpu even after a few years.
The cooling is inadequate for the gpu in these computers. Unless they make thicker computers or use less powerful graphics like a normal manufacture would, there will always be gpu issues with dedicated graphics in a mbp 15.

If you buy a 15 you have to buy one that is a couple of years old to not get dedicated graphics or go with 13.

Tarekith
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Re: MacBook Pro 13” with i5 3.3 or i7 3.5?

Post by Tarekith » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:19 pm

Huh, what does that have to do with my post?

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