MBP: 256MB VRAM or Core 2 Duo?

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited January 2014
Appleinsiders -



Let's say you're a video editor/gfx professional.



Let's say you've pretty much been using desktop macs your whole life.



Let's say you'll still have a 'decent' G5 dual 2 gig desktop mac to do hardcore stuff, but you're also (finally) going to get a portable to do work around town.



Let's say this portable's gotta 'hold you over' till you can pick up a Mac Pro in mid 2007 at the earliest.



Do you:



1) Pick up a brand new last generation MBP Core Duo 2.16 with the 256MB video card for $2K. or...



2) Spring for the "hot off the press" MBP Core 2 Duo 2.16 with 4MB L2 cache and 128MB VRAM (and bigger HD and dual layer burner) for $2200?



Oh yeah, let's say you're Canadian and all prices are in loonies (it's all relative anyway, right amerifriends?)

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    gargar Posts: 1,201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wienerdog


    Appleinsiders -



    Let's say you're a video editor/gfx professional.



    Let's say you've pretty much been using desktop macs your whole life.



    Let's say you'll still have a 'decent' G5 dual 2 gig desktop mac to do hardcore stuff, but you're also (finally) going to get a portable to do work around town.



    Let's say this portable's gotta 'hold you over' till you can pick up a Mac Pro in mid 2007 at the earliest.



    Do you:



    1) Pick up a brand new last generation MBP Core Duo 2.16 with the 256MB video card for $2K. or...



    2) Spring for the "hot off the press" MBP Core 2 Duo 2.16 with 4MB L2 cache and 128MB VRAM (and bigger HD and dual layer burner) for $2200?



    Oh yeah, let's say you're Canadian and all prices are in loonies (it's all relative anyway, right amerifriends?)



    Go for the Core 2 Duo.
  • Reply 2 of 10
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,431moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wienerdog


    1) Pick up a brand new last generation MBP Core Duo 2.16 with the 256MB video card for $2K. or...



    2) Spring for the "hot off the press" MBP Core 2 Duo 2.16 with 4MB L2 cache and 128MB VRAM (and bigger HD and dual layer burner) for $2200?



    128 vs 256 VRam is pretty meaningless for the X1600 card but if you are doing lots of high end stuff then temperature will matter:



    http://blogs.zdnet.com/Apple/?p=323



    It would be nice to get Appleinsider folks with these machines to verify any temperature difference.



    A big downer on the Core 2 Duo is you can't replace your own hard drive but if you get a big drive to begin with, that shouldn't matter.
  • Reply 3 of 10
    lundylundy Posts: 4,466member
    For video, the VRAM doesn't matter so much, but it does if you are doing 3-D stuff.



    In general, Quartz will use as much VRAM as it can get, but in your case the extra CPU speed for video might be the better choice, especially with the huge L2 cache.
  • Reply 4 of 10
    I would also go for the Core 2 Duo because it's faster CPU is better for video work and anyways, Final Cut Pro doesn't use the GPU very often (just to preview effects I think). Only Motion and Aperture make full use of it. I would say the faster CPU, bigger and faster HD (perpendicular storage) and the Dual layer superdrive are more worth it than the 256mb VRAM.
  • Reply 5 of 10
    Thanks for the advice folks. I've come to the same conclusion, which is:



    I don't think any of the MBP's are satifactory for doing any more than playing around with Motion or AE. I don't even know why I was considering that a viable option. I'm going to go for the updated machine and won't look back
  • Reply 6 of 10
    It depends what you define as "satisfactory"
  • Reply 7 of 10
    The reasons I would go for the core 2 duo are:



    1) hardware is not 'beta'-ish



    2) The x1600 is clocked much higher in the C2D MBP, resulting in much better performance



    3) the temp of the C2D MBPs is much lower
  • Reply 8 of 10
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wienerdog View Post


    Thanks for the advice folks. I've come to the same conclusion, which is:



    I don't think any of the MBP's are satifactory for doing any more than playing around with Motion or AE. I don't even know why I was considering that a viable option. I'm going to go for the updated machine and won't look back



    A Core 2 MBP should be as fast as your Dual core g5.
  • Reply 9 of 10
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wienerdog View Post


    Let's say you'll still have a 'decent' G5 dual 2 gig desktop mac to do hardcore stuff, but you're also (finally) going to get a portable to do work around town.



    Let's say this portable's gotta 'hold you over' till you can pick up a Mac Pro in mid 2007 at the earliest.




    Why is it "gonna hold you over"? From your statement your gonna keep your G5 till you get a Mac Pro and you're going to keep the MacBook Pro. So it's not gonna hold you over. You're buying a new MacBook Pro to add to your computer setup, aren't you and it doesn't matter if you're replacing the G5, because you're going to keep the G5 till you get the Mac Pro, right?



    So I would look at what you really want for a portable computer. I'd probably suggest the Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro because of the processing power.
  • Reply 10 of 10
    The 256 Mb graphics card will allow you to power a 30" CD and give you better high end 3D graphics performance.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by 1337_5L4Xx0R View Post


    The reasons I would go for the core 2 duo are:



    1) hardware is not 'beta'-ish



    That's a tad unfair. The Powerbook/Macbook Pro line has been evolving for years.



    2) The x1600 is clocked much higher in the C2D MBP, resulting in much better performance



    It is possible to un-underclock the x1600 graphics cards in C1Ds.



    3) the temp of the C2D MBPs is much lower



    Lower yes, but "much" lower? Does anyone have the evidence to back this up? I'm not saying it's not a better processor but I have the Core 1 Duo and while it can get "very warm" to the touch, I've never found it to be too much of a problem. For routine use the CPU usually hovers around the 60 degree mark (heatsinks 40-45 degrees)...which is actually pretty cool. Only for intense prollonged use have I noticed the Temp of CPU A getting up to 90 degrees with the heatsinks around 60. The temps drop rapidly once the intense (max out processor) use ends. It is also possible to install a fan controller to modify the fan response, which some users have found to significantly cool running temps. The fans are very quiet, even when running at around 4500 RPM.



    Therefore, in a choice between the two I'd go the better graphics card. Core 2 Duo will be marginally faster for most things but double graphics ram will significantly prolong the life of the computer as a graphics/gaming machine.
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