Best 13-inch 2018 MacBook Pro versus two 15-inch examples
September 5th, 2018, by rob-ART morgan, mad scientist
The 13-inch MacBook Pro is popular. With a Quad-Core i7 processor, how does the top 2018 MacBook Pro 13-inch compare to the "low-end" 15-inch 2018 model (or a "high-end" 2017 model)?
15-inch 2018 2.2GHz i7 = '18 MacBook Pro 2.2GHz 6-core i7, Pro 555X GPU
13-inch 2018 2.7GHz i7 = '18 MacBook Pro 2.7GHz 4-core i7, Iris Plus 655 GPU
15-inch 2017 2.9GHz i7 = '17 MacBook Pro 2.9GHz 4-core i7, Pro 560 GPU
RISE of TOMB RAIDER
A Metal based game, we used the built-in 3 phase benchmark at 1280x800 Medium preset. (The HIGHER the Frames per Second, the FASTER the Mac.)
An OpenCL rendering benchmark, it has three scenes of increasing complexity. We ran the default LuxBall scene rendering GPU only. (The HIGHER the rating in KSamples per Second, the FASTER the Mac.)
We chose the Basic preset for this OpenGL benchmark. (The HIGHER the Frames per Second, the FASTER the Mac.)
Settings 1440x900 Windowed with Anti-aliasing OFF. (The HIGHER the Frames per Second, the FASTER the Mac.)
Looped playback of Candle project while rendering one Noise Reduction node on-the-fly. (The HIGHER the Frames per Second, the FASTER the Mac.)
We rendered the BMW_cpu demo scene using only the CPU of each MacBook Pro. (The LOWER the time in Seconds, the FASTER the Mac.)
Render a 3D scene using all cores of the CPU. (The HIGHER the SCORE, the FASTER the Mac.)
LuxMark lets you do OpenCL rendering of the LuxBall scene using CPU only. (The HIGHER the rating in KSamples per Second, the FASTER the Mac.)
WHAT DID WE LEARN?
When it comes to GPU intensive apps, the first five graphs prove the 13-inch 2018 MacBook Pro with an Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655 GPU cannot compete with the discrete Radeon Pro 555X GPU in the 15-inch low-end 2018 MacBook Pro. Nor does it intimidate the 15-inch 2017 model with Radeon Pro 560 GPU.
Regarding pure CPU performance, we presented three examples (Blender, Cinebench, and LuxMark) revealing that, though the 2018 13-inch model is not as fast as the 2018 15-inch MacBook Pro 6-core, it beats the 2017 15-inch MacBook Pro 4-core.
If you REALLY like the size of the 13-inch but are disappointed by the GPU speed, you can always add a Thunderbolt 3 eGPU Box with high-end GPU to boost graphics performance significantly. We will demonstrate that in a future article.
Our thanks to B&H Photo Video for their support in making this article possible.
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