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Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby Venatt » 30 Dec 2018, 09:09

I want to buy a New Mac Book Pro and I was thinking about the 13" with the 2.3GHz dual-core 7th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, but my question is if the i5 is powerful enough to run a DAW, VST or softsynth and samples, or do I nned the i7 ?
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Buying a New Mac Book Pro


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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby Quai34 » 30 Dec 2018, 09:38

I asked the same question about the Mac Mini a while back and get responds that the I5 is powerfull enough ....So, with the new generation, it shouldn't be an issue....But I'm not the king of computer though....
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby analogika » 30 Dec 2018, 11:59

I had to replace my aging dual-Core 13“ because it couldn’t handle the MainStage load I was throwing at it.

Went quad-Core because I really don’t want to have to think about it, and haven’t looked back.
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby Frantz » 30 Dec 2018, 14:05

You won't put iZotope Ozone on all the tracks and play live with zero latency, an i7 would not be enough, neither.
+ 1 with analogika, go up (i7, quad core) if possible, you'll have more power for plugins.
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby 23skidoo » 30 Dec 2018, 20:26

It really depends, as everyone said, on what you're doing and how many VSTs of what kind. I have a quad-core iMac retina with i7 and I still can't load it up with tons of plugins (I use a lot of Arturia V Collection) at 64 sample buffer. You can always tradeoff buffer (latency) for performance, to a point, but that really depends on your workflow. If you're 99% "in the box" and so input/output latency is less of a concern, then you can *probably* get away with a fast i5. But the CPU clock speed, more than the i5/i7 difference, is what you're going to want to take advantage of in this case. The math in most of these audio plugins is pretty simple and they usually aren't fully accelerated for SIMD and other tricks (though, sometimes, they are). But, it's technology. It costs a LOT and it becomes obsolete quickly, and it's never quite "fast enough" to do everything we want. Will the i7 "feel" like it's worth the money in the end? Probably not. Will the i5 be fast enough to do what you want? Only you can get a feeling for that answer. But the i7 will have a slightly higher resale value in the end (depending on how many years from now you sell it of course) and will probably be useful to you for longer, so if you're able to swing it, I don't see a reason not to.
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby Venatt » 01 Jan 2019, 18:51

Just have one question, is the difference between a 2.2GHZ 6-Corei7 and a 2.6GHz 6-Core i7 very substantial ? is 2.2 powerful enough or would I need 2.6 ?
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby 23skidoo » 01 Jan 2019, 20:31

Your mileage may vary, but a lot of what I do is not parallelized and so raw single-core speed is much more useful. Some DAWs do a very good job of using all the cores (I don't know which, offhand, but I would assume Logic should do that since it's an Apple product), but Ableton Live seems to need a mix of raw speed and cores to do a good job, and too much of either at the expense of the other is less good than a balance between the two. For reference, I'm using a 4GHz 4-core right now, and while my CPU meter rarely goes over 50%, I can easily force dropouts with low buffer sizes (64 and under) - this means only 2 of my four cores are used (the rough 50% loading) but they're fully used (hence the dropouts). My laptop, which has a 3.something GHz 2-core, will sit at nearly 70% CPU but perform about equally with the 4-core on the same Live project. This makes me think the number of cores in Live is less important than the CPU speed.

Personally I find clock speed is more important than total cores. I would prefer a 4-core 2.6 over a 6 core 2.2. I find the number of cores doesn't translate as well to latency and VST performance as do the CPU raw speed, but that's my experience with my DAWs and video editing tools, again, YMMV.

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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby Quai34 » 02 Jan 2019, 04:25

+1 for all the answers, I do a lot of out of the box, mixing on a real board, no plugins, well just an UAD but on an external HD, external reverb, compressor and so in, so....I5 is OK for me....
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby Venatt » 04 Jan 2019, 21:57

Are 16GB or RAM good enough to run a VST, DAW, plugins and samples ?
Last edited by Venatt on 04 Jan 2019, 22:09, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Buying a New Mac Book Pro

Postby 23skidoo » 04 Jan 2019, 23:00

Yes, within reason. I use that for my most common tasks all the time and have no issues with memory pressure.
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