Apple limits 2016 MacBook Pro models to 16GB of RAM to maximize battery life

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  • Reply 81 of 179
    crowleycrowley Posts: 6,018member
    So for all the people whining about not having 32GB, I have a question.

    What are you using currently? Do you have an older model MacBook Pro with 32GB of RAM?
    I'm curious to know the answer to this is well. Did the previous rMBP have a 32GB BTO option?
    They've maxed out at 16GB for quite a while.

    Early 2011 according to wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacBook_Pro#Technical_specifications_2
    edited October 2016 ration alpscooter63
  • Reply 82 of 179
    jlanddjlandd Posts: 873member
    jkichline said:

    The other thing to consider is it's possible the SSD which is three times faster than before, will offset any limitation in physical RAM.

    Depends on the software, I think. Pro Tools, the definitive professional audio software, caches the timeline in RAM. I know less than zero about coding so take my observations with a grain of salt, but my impression is that Avid writes software in a way no one else does, and it's not always a good thing. I don't think disk swapping will work in Pro Tools, at least not the way you'd expect. 16GB of RAM could be a limitation for some projects, and I would have preferred a 32GB option, even if it meant sacrificing LOTS of battery time. I need to take my computer from place to place, but there's almost always a power outlet wherever I go.


    Even aside from caching the timeline, all DAW software is reliant on RAM for buffering, which can be either a little or a whole lot, in order to keep away the glitching that happens when processes build too high for the CPU, and caching to disk isn't the answer.  Much of audio work is reading and writing to disk but the rest is CPU and RAM dependent, and we're not at the point of diminishing returns, where more than X won't give us a higher return. While it's true that we've all done fine with 16GB in nearly all laptop recording situations, I have no doubt that before we know it it will be the same as 8 was a few years ago and 4 a while before that.  It wasn't all that long ago when upgrading to 8GB in my MBP was quite a boost. I don't deal in the high resolution multitrack sessions with the track amounts and extremely high count plugin instances that heavy hitters do, but it's a fact that we have now gotten to the point where 16GB is not what it used to be.   And the argument about battery life is a non-starter, because, aside from pushing MBPs as all you need to do your thing on, Apple can't say "If you need more RAM you want to choose from our currently available desktop series, which is same as it was in 2013".  Apple, by design, has a few gaps in their hardware, and one is the desktop that simply takes care of what they don't put in their highest end laptop and no more, and where portability doesn't matter.


    edited October 2016 ewtheckmanbaconstang
  • Reply 83 of 179
    irelandireland Posts: 17,671member
    It's really because the laptop is too damn thin that they can't put a bigger battery in it to allow it to have more RAM. All for the sake of thiness.
    I think the thinnesss and battery size is more for weight than pure thinness. My MBA 13" is 3 pounds and that's as heavy as I'd want it to be. Frankly wouldn't mind if it were lighter.
  • Reply 84 of 179
    irelandireland Posts: 17,671member
    dig48109 said:
    What a terrible decision. We buy high end Macbook Pros in our company. We buy lots of them and we max it out with 1TB SSD and a discrete graphics card. Many of our users are video editors for 360 video and our developers need more RAM for their needs. I need more RAM for running virtual machines. This is clearly a case of Apple not listening to their customers. Most of the time our laptops are plugged in. We can live with a USB type C connector as long as there are enough of them. To Phil Schiller. Give us Apple customers the choice in the Pro series between 1. More RAM sacrificing battery life 2. Choice of AMD/ATI graphics vs nVidia.
    That's not how products are designed though. As you have some of your machines plugged in why don't you buy desktops for those places?
    edited October 2016 pulseimagesration al
  • Reply 85 of 179
    irelandireland Posts: 17,671member

    mazda 3s said:
    mazda 3s said:
    Actually, the company at fault here isn't Apple, but Intel. Skylake doesn't support the needed LPDDR4 that would allow them to go to higher capacities. And Kaby Lake will only have support in the U chips, and U chips aren't mobile quad cores, so the 15" won't be able to get the upgrade even when they do go to KBL. 

    In short, Intel continues to drop the ball. It's hard to imagine Apple isn't getting tired of this kind of crap. 
    Skylake, 32GB, DDR4 

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=1265327&gclid=CjwKEAjw7svABRCi_KPzoPr53QoSJAABSvxf1yU3rDtp8-jlAIBM4e3JGgBPUhGK3pJlr8wRV-c1xhoCKFnw_wcB&is=REG&ap=y&m=Y&c3api=1876,92051677802,&Q=&A=details
    DDR4 is not LPDDR4. 
    My bad. Point taken. 
    This is what an adult community looks like, MacRumors. Now if only we can ban some of the obvious trolls who registered in the past few weeks to try to drag us down.
    ewtheckmanpulseimagesration alpscooter63
  • Reply 86 of 179
    macplusplus said:

    Incredible numbers ! What database is that ? Which loads all the tables and indexes into memory !!! Apparently this is a very bad database, doing so, or some preload parameter is badly configured. You cannot sell much projects to your customers if you request so much memory from them. 24 GB is pretty good for heavy desktop work. Your case is a very extreme one even for a desktop machine, we're talking about a laptop here.
    That's when I have multiple databases open. (Full blown relational databases consisting of a large number of tables.) And no, the records and indexes are not all loaded in memory, though there is cache space set aside for performance. That cache can expand if I'm working on large sets of data, which does happen. (RAM = speed) But having a lot of resources and the development environment loaded, especially interface graphics uses a lot. I'm almost always running a virtual machine, and newer versions of Windows use a lot of RAM just by itself. (Databases within Windows seem to like even more RAM than running in Mac native, though that's more of an impression than hard numbers.) I also usually have many other applications open, such as Safari—which is about as memory hungry as any of my databases.
  • Reply 87 of 179
    You ignore your other god and only revolt against one god. Your other god is the heat.

    Producers seem to expect me to repeal the laws of physics just about every day. Why can't Apple?

    But seriously, good point.
  • Reply 88 of 179
    Rayz2016 said:

    Always difficult to tell. But this is what usually happens:
    Apple makes a decision.
    Folk here an in other forums have a collective seizure and swear to the almighty that Apple will not see another penny from them ever again. 
    Apple sells the product that "no one will ever buy" in ridiculous numbers. 
    The screaming Mac users are STILL here.

    Yup, and I compounded the problem. While I would have preferred 32GB of RAM, I didn't let the 16GB limit prevent me from buying it.

    The designers aren't the only ones who have to make compromises. I chose 16GB of Mac over 32GB of Windows.
    Solipulseimagespscooter63
  • Reply 89 of 179
    crowley said:
    So for all the people whining about not having 32GB, I have a question.

    What are you using currently? Do you have an older model MacBook Pro with 32GB of RAM?
    I'm curious to know the answer to this is well. Did the previous rMBP have a 32GB BTO option?
    They've maxed out at 16GB for quite a while.

    Early 2011 according to wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacBook_Pro#Technical_specifications_2
    Ok so why is this shocking to anyone? Was there even a rumor that they would offer 32GB models?
    ericthehalfbeeration al
  • Reply 90 of 179
    tmaytmay Posts: 3,949member
    ChrisCarneval said:

    Apple could make the macbook Pro a bit thicker and heavier to incorporate a bigger battery. This thinness is everything is idiotic. It is function follows form, which is just plain wrong doing.

    High performance -- Long battery life -- Small and light form factor. Pick any two. You can't have all three.

    I would prefer either a larger. heavier device with better performance, or a small, thin high performance computer with crappy battery life, over a small, light device with long battery life but compromised performance. As I said in another thread, a bigger, heavier MacBook Pro with a two-hour battery is still a helluvalot better than trying to lug around an iMac!

    So yeah, I don't get it either. I understand that thinner and lighter are desirable and why Apple is striving to keep size down, but I find myself wondering how many of its users would make different choices. I know every design is a balancing act so compromises have to be made. What I wonder is if those of us who would make different decisions are the bulk of the target market, or are we just a noisy minority?
    You are in fact a noisy minority, and by definition, you are outliers in the market. 

    That doesn't mean you are wrong, just that Apple doesn't see the benefit of creating small volumes of devices for outliers.

    Remember the 17 inch Mac Book Pro's? Neither do I; they are extinct because the market didn't support the sales volume necessary for profitability.

    Thin and light sells volumes.
    ration al
  • Reply 91 of 179
    macplusplus said:

    Incredible numbers ! What database is that ? Which loads all the tables and indexes into memory !!! Apparently this is a very bad database, doing so, or some preload parameter is badly configured. You cannot sell much projects to your customers if you request so much memory from them. 24 GB is pretty good for heavy desktop work. Your case is a very extreme one even for a desktop machine, we're talking about a laptop here.
    That's when I have multiple databases open. (Full blown relational databases consisting of a large number of tables.) And no, the records and indexes are not all loaded in memory, though there is cache space set aside for performance. That cache can expand if I'm working on large sets of data, which does happen. (RAM = speed) But having a lot of resources and the development environment loaded, especially interface graphics uses a lot. I'm almost always running a virtual machine, and newer versions of Windows use a lot of RAM just by itself. (Databases within Windows seem to like even more RAM than running in Mac native, though that's more of an impression than hard numbers.) I also usually have many other applications open, such as Safari—which is about as memory hungry as any of my databases.
    If it is Filemaker Pro then it will get a huge improvement from the new Macbooks, but this is mostly related to CPU, not RAM, increasing the RAM in my previous MBP didn't bring much improvement. Regarding the virtual machine, instead of paying a surcharge for the extra 16 GB in a Macbook getting a second machine is better. I mean if I would pay half a machine's price more for built-to-order 32 GB, I would pay the other half too to get a whole second machine instead. An old Macbook Air or old 13" MBP, bootcamped, would do the job. Sorry no other solution for the virtual machine, while Apple offers already BootCamp and Intel.
    edited October 2016
  • Reply 92 of 179
    So why are video editors using laptops designed to be highly portable?
    Perhaps Apple needs to release a workstation as well as a laptop?
    ... One with desktop specs that is capable of being moved, but not meant to be light or be used for extended periods on battery.

    You mean like "MacBook" for the thin and light crowd, and "MacBook Pro" for those who want a truck? Great idea!

    I think that's exactly why some people are scratching their heads, wondering why Apple is (seemingly) prioritizing size and weight over raw performance in the Pro. If I want a highly portable machine, I can just buy the MacBook.

    I have no idea what kind of challenges adding more RAM would have presented so I won't say "Apple should have..." I'm just saying "I would like to have..." I'd also like speed-of-light file transfers and physical control surfaces that reconfigure the controls to whatever I'm doing. Sometimes you just gotta live with what you can get within the limits of technology and practicality.
    baconstang
  • Reply 93 of 179
    Adding more than 16GB of memory to MacBook Pro is technically feasible, but Apple is not supporting it. So that makes it a business decision. That means the incremental value of extra memory to a limited number of users does not justify the number of customers (profits) lost by adding costly hardware that most users would find superfluous.
    “Hey, let’s make our RAM upgrades hundreds of dollars more than they need to be!”
    “Okay… people don’t seem to be upgrading, though.”
    “So let’s just stop offering the upgrades.”
    “That worked out, I guess.”
    “Now let’s make it impossible to upgrade at all.”
    “Hang on, people hate this.”
    “Why?”
    “Seems they were just upgrading third party because ours were so expensive and always wanted more RAM.”
    “Well, too late now, suckers.”
    Now consider the following hypothetical, designed by Apple malevolently just to irk some people here ...

    Suppose the cost of logistics made it such that Apple could ship *all* notebooks with the same physical amount
    of 16GB, and make "configure-to-order" of 16GB actually be a "software enable" of 8GB of that, only charging more money.
    After a teardown showed this to the 8GB owners, there would be riots!  (Whether or not Apple could then magically
    enable the shadowed 8GB for more money.)

    This could arise economically if say, both 8GB and 16GB were just a single strip of 8 chips,
    costing only pennies more, caught at a memory technology transition juncture.

    Such a nefarious scheme has been done before -- I'm old enough to remember the manufacturer of ye olde
    Xerox Sigma 9 mainframe shipping all (room-sized) units with the same hardware/firmware, but then charging
    dozens of thousands of dollars more just to quietly field-enable the faster floating-point opcodes, or something similar.

    Further, Tesla does this in a cheeky way, shipping all cars with fixed-size larger batteries or the same autopilot hardware,
    but then enabling better configs later after receipt of funds.   To save the extra up-front costs to the consumer,
    some folks don't seem to mind.

    edited October 2016
  • Reply 94 of 179
    It's a very disappointing release for many users that enjoy using a MAC in conjunction with VMware Fusion to support multiple virtual machines.
    Supporting cloud driven technical engineering teams that rely on virtualization is obviously not a target market for Apple. We began switching our teams to Lenovo for increased memory support.  I sure miss my MAC at work. ;-(
  • Reply 95 of 179
    crowleycrowley Posts: 6,018member
    crowley said:
    So for all the people whining about not having 32GB, I have a question.

    What are you using currently? Do you have an older model MacBook Pro with 32GB of RAM?
    I'm curious to know the answer to this is well. Did the previous rMBP have a 32GB BTO option?
    They've maxed out at 16GB for quite a while.

    Early 2011 according to wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacBook_Pro#Technical_specifications_2
    Ok so why is this shocking to anyone? Was there even a rumor that they would offer 32GB models?
    People aren't shocked, they're disappointed.  Other notebooks from other manufacturers exist that have 32GB RAM.
    lorin schultzbaconstang
  • Reply 96 of 179
    jlandd said:
    jkichline said:

    The other thing to consider is it's possible the SSD which is three times faster than before, will offset any limitation in physical RAM.

    Depends on the software, I think. Pro Tools, the definitive professional audio software, caches the timeline in RAM. I know less than zero about coding so take my observations with a grain of salt, but my impression is that Avid writes software in a way no one else does, and it's not always a good thing. I don't think disk swapping will work in Pro Tools, at least not the way you'd expect. 16GB of RAM could be a limitation for some projects, and I would have preferred a 32GB option, even if it meant sacrificing LOTS of battery time. I need to take my computer from place to place, but there's almost always a power outlet wherever I go.


    Even aside from caching the timeline, all DAW software is reliant on RAM for buffering, which can be either a little or a whole lot, in order to keep away the glitching that happens when processes build too high for the CPU, and caching to disk isn't the answer.  Much of audio work is reading and writing to disk but the rest is CPU and RAM dependent, and we're not at the point of diminishing returns, where more than X won't give us a higher return. While it's true that we've all done fine with 16GB in nearly all laptop recording situations, I have no doubt that before we know it it will be the same as 8 was a few years ago and 4 a while before that.  It wasn't all that long ago when upgrading to 8GB in my MBP was quite a boost. I don't deal in the high resolution multitrack sessions with the track amounts and extremely high count plugin instances that heavy hitters do, but it's a fact that we have now gotten to the point where 16GB is not what it used to be.   And the argument about battery life is a non-starter, because, aside from pushing MBPs as all you need to do your thing on, Apple can't say "If you need more RAM you want to choose from our currently available desktop series, which is same as it was in 2013".  Apple, by design, has a few gaps in their hardware, and one is the desktop that simply takes care of what they don't put in their highest end laptop and no more, and where portability doesn't matter.


    I don't deny the need for of RAM-hungry applications. Apple also may have gaps in their hardware, but these have deep technical reasons not related to portability and obsession with thinness. iPhone 6-7 are thin because people wanted larger displays and the only way to manipulate a larger display is to make it thinner.  This is not a design obsession, this is a usability issue. Apple Watch is as thick as a brick, for example.

    16GB RAM may not be enough but the 32 GB solutions are not true solutions either because all the 32 GB DDR3 RAMs offered by PC laptop makers are desktop RAM modules. Apple has no desktop-RAM-in-a-notebook solution and will never have. Macbooks and iPhones use LPDDR3 modules, which are true low-power mobile modules. Yet PC makers declare DDR3L as LPDDR3, which is in fact not a notebook RAM. If 32 GB and more is only available on Apple's desktop series there is nothing to do at the moment and Apple is certainly aware of that gap.
    nolamacguyration al
  • Reply 97 of 179
    crowley said:
    crowley said:
    So for all the people whining about not having 32GB, I have a question.

    What are you using currently? Do you have an older model MacBook Pro with 32GB of RAM?
    I'm curious to know the answer to this is well. Did the previous rMBP have a 32GB BTO option?
    They've maxed out at 16GB for quite a while.

    Early 2011 according to wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacBook_Pro#Technical_specifications_2
    Ok so why is this shocking to anyone? Was there even a rumor that they would offer 32GB models?
    People aren't shocked, they're disappointed.  Other notebooks from other manufacturers exist that have 32GB RAM.
    Were you expecting it?
  • Reply 98 of 179
    jmpmk2jmpmk2 Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    dig48109 said:
    What a terrible decision. We buy high end Macbook Pros in our company. We buy lots of them and we max it out with 1TB SSD and a discrete graphics card. (Blah, blah, blah) This is frustrating. We've been stuck at 16GB for too many years. There is no excuse for the top end Macbook Pro (w discrete graphics card) to be limited to 32GB.
    I hate to break it to you, but you're in the market for a desktop, not a mobile computing device. You might want to look cool rendering video at Starbucks, but that's not what 99% of consumers are using these devices for. I'm sure these "terrible" decision makers would be happy to point you to a number of iMacs and Mac Pros that are capable of utilizing much more memory.
    Rayz2016pulseimagesnolamacguyration al
  • Reply 99 of 179
    tmaytmay Posts: 3,949member
    ltmacer said:
    It's a very disappointing release for many users that enjoy using a MAC in conjunction with VMware Fusion to support multiple virtual machines.
    Supporting cloud driven technical engineering teams that rely on virtualization is obviously not a target market for Apple. We began switching our teams to Lenovo for increased memory support.  I sure miss my MAC at work. ;-(
    Using MAC instead of Mac, especially for your first post, is incredibly poor form and a dead giveaway for a troll. 

    Enjoy your Lenovo's, and buh bye!
    nolamacguyration al
  • Reply 100 of 179
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,765member
    crowley said:
    So for all the people whining about not having 32GB, I have a question.

    What are you using currently? Do you have an older model MacBook Pro with 32GB of RAM?
    I'm curious to know the answer to this is well. Did the previous rMBP have a 32GB BTO option?
    They've maxed out at 16GB for quite a while.

    Early 2011 according to wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacBook_Pro#Technical_specifications_2
    Ok so why is this shocking to anyone? Was there even a rumor that they would offer 32GB models?
    I really have no idea. But remember we have the same screaming outrage every time Apple releases an iPad with only <less-ram-than-an-android-tablet>  amount of RAM. 

    This laptop is pretty much what I expected. The only things I don't understand is why they had a reveal event in the first place, and why they haven't got more to show after three years work on this laptop. 

    I agree with Apple that the touch screen on the Surface laptop is poor ergonomics, but I here's what I would have like to have seen: a fifteen inch laptop with a keyboard that lifts out. Underneath is a smart connector which will take a touch screen in its place. On its own, that second screen can be used as a iPad. 

    I dunno.  It took three years for them to embed a long thin Apple Watch above the keyboard; this doesn't bode well for the eventual appearance of an Apple Car; not in my lifetime anyway. 


    baconstangjlandd
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