What are you running?

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Posts 82
Andrew Hanson | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Jan 7 2011 9:31 AM

I'm using a late 2007 Macbook and considering moving up to a Macbook Pro. The rumor is that Apple will release a new Macbook Pro sometime in the first have of 2011. So, it could be as late as June. Not sure if I need to wait that long as the next 6 months hold a considerable amount of work for me and speeding up my computer and having a bigger screen could make my life a lot easier - even if a new Macbook Pro comes out in 4 months. So, what are you running? On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate the performance of your machine?

Here are my specs -

2.2 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo

2 GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM

160 HDD at 5400 rpm

 

Blessings.

Posts 762
Patrick S. | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 10:48 AM

Hi Andrew — given the differences between machines which can also be affected by post purchase upgrading and then subjective ranking by persons.

Better to use some standard (free) benchmarking software like Geekbench (doesn't do HDD though) or XBench — here's mine for my (older) Mac Pro machine.

XBench

  1. Results 154.43
    1. CPU Test 187.04
    2. Memory Test 148.60
      1. System 163.21
    3. Stream 136.39
    4. Disk Test 84.92
      1. Sequential 151.00
      2. Random 59.07

"I want to know all God's thoughts; the rest are just details." - Albert Einstein

Posts 82
Andrew Hanson | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 11:01 AM

Thanks Patrick. Yeah, I have used that benchmark, and I can see the numbers, but I don't know how they translate into experience. I can see that machine X is 2X's faster, but what does that mean? Does it mean that instead of Logos opening in 20 seconds it opens in 10? Also, HDD performance can be such a total bottleneck to performance that benchmarks that ignore it are actually missing a lot  as far as performance is concerned.

My main issue is, should I wait up to 6 months for a potentially marginal increase in performance from the currently offered Macbook Pro, or should I upgrade now because I will get a noticeable increase?

 

Thanks brother. What are your machine's specs?

Posts 762
Patrick S. | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 11:44 AM

Andrew Hanson:

Thanks Patrick. Yeah, I have used that benchmark, and I can see the numbers, but I don't know how they translate into experience. I can see that machine X is 2X's faster, but what does that mean? Does it mean that instead of Logos opening in 20 seconds it opens in 10? Also, HDD performance can be such a total bottleneck to performance that benchmarks that ignore it are actually missing a lot  as far as performance is concerned.

OK see where you are coming from and given it is a significant investment can understand your caution. OK to use real world numbers — using Logos that is — you could have a look at my post here http://community.logos.com/forums/p/27321/203019.aspx#203019 I did a number of actual task tests and timed them.

My machine is an older Mac Pro, 2 x 2.66 Dual-Core CPU with 6GB of RAM and 7200 1TB HDD. Many of the newer iMacs and MacBook Pros get a higher Geekbench number than my machine.

After I did that first test I got an SSD drive and moved Logos files onto that and I did the same real world tests again and posted the numbers here

http://community.logos.com/forums/t/27833.aspx

I think that should give you a real feel for what someone else is getting.

 

Andrew Hanson:

My main issue is, should I wait up to 6 months for a potentially marginal increase in performance from the currently offered Macbook Pro, or should I upgrade now because I will get a noticeable increase?

Ahhh — the eternal dilemma! Buy now or wait? Well naturally you will see better performance, particularly if you go for the high end i5 or i7 processor, Intel is touting fairly significant performance boosts with their new Sandy Bridge processors of course how this ends up as actual numbers on a MacBook Pro is an open question.

Have a look at the testing above and that will give you more of a comparison idea of how your current machine is faring.

"I want to know all God's thoughts; the rest are just details." - Albert Einstein

Posts 15805
Forum MVP
Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :) | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 11:52 AM

Andrew Hanson:
My main issue is, should I wait up to 6 months for a potentially marginal increase in performance from the currently offered Macbook Pro, or should I upgrade now because I will get a noticeable increase?

Idea Upgrade hard drive in current MacBook - http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Repair/Installing-MacBook-Core-2-Duo-Hard-Drive-Replacement/514/1 has step by step guide.  Also have option to upgrade RAM from 2 GB to 3 GB.

Mac Sales has laptop DIY (Do It Yourself) upgrade kits => http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/hard-drives/2.5-Notebook/SATA/DIY/ (convert internal drive to portable external) - recommend 7200 RPM or faster drive, possibly Solid State Disk (SSD):

320 GB 7200 RPM is $ 62.99 => http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Hitachi/Y0A73333/  (doubles amount of disk space)

40 GB SSD is $ 109.99 => http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/YSSDMP040/  (faster, but smaller - 25 % of current disk space)

120 GB SSD is $ 259.99 => http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/YSSDMP120/  (faster, but smaller - 75 % of current disk space)

Also, Mac Sales has steps for transferring user applications and files (including Logos 4) => http://eshop.macsales.com/articles/how-to-transfer-your-data-from-your-old-drive-to-a-new-drive (last year used same steps to upgrade 2006 Mac Book Pro hard drive from 5400 RPM to 7200 RPM - noticeably faster)

An SSD should upgrade 2007 Mac Book performance to be like new Mac Book Air => http://community.logos.com/forums/p/24898/188460.aspx#188460

Later in year can purchase new Mac Book Pro (or desktop iMac with larger screen) - have 2 usable devices for your Logos Library.

Keep Smiling Smile

Posts 82
Andrew Hanson | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 12:05 PM

Patrick, that is fantastic. Thank you so much for your testing data!

 

Keep Smiling, I never considered those options. Thank you for the resources. Unbelievable how cheap a HDD upgrade is!

Posts 1534
Ben | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 12:43 PM

I would wait. Check out Macrumors buyers' guide.

http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/

 

My understanding from following hardware and the Logos forums is that chip speed is really only useful for indexing. For good performance, you want a fast HDD or SSD if you can afford it, and plenty of RAM.

I suspect Apple will incorporate small SSDs (20-40Gb) as primary boot drives into their next laptops and iMacs, with the option of a 2nd regular HDD. I base this (admittedly wild) suspicion on the new custom designed SSD in the new Airs, Intels new SSD form-factor (see here), and the fact that Apple is the world's largest consumer of flash memory and could do it profitably. 

So, buy if you need to; wait if you can.

"The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected."- G.K. Chesterton

Posts 1534
Ben | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jan 7 2011 12:46 PM

BTW, I'm on a 2.8 quad-core i5 iMac with 6Gb RAM. I wish I'd had the $$ to go for the dual SSD/HDD option, but it was really stretcthing the budget and wife's tolerance anyway. I'm generally quite happy with the performance of L4.

"The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected."- G.K. Chesterton

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