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maartendc

Powerful workstation thin and light: Macbook Pro 15 vs Dell XPS 15 vs Razer Blade 15

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Hello all,

 

I am in the market for a new thin and light / workstation laptop for my CAD / Revit / rendering needs (mostly CPU workloads). Coming from a Macbook Pro 2013 that just got stolen. I enjoy Mac OS, and can dual boot with Windows for the windows apps I need. That being said, I dont mind going with a Windows laptop if its good.

 

I NEED: High res monitor to work on, color accurate, (1080P NOT acceptable), very good CPU, fast RAM and storage, good GPU is nice to have but any of these would be fine for me.

 

My take so far:

- Macbook: I've been hearing so much about the thermal throttling (with i9 CPUs) and the keyboard issues with the butterfly keyboard on the newer Macbook Pro's. But I wonder if the i7s also suffer thermal throttling, or just the i9s. On the other hand, Macbook Pro is proven quality wise for display, speakers, trackpad, etc.Good support from Apple (in my experience).

- Dell XPS: Also has throttling issues according to Dave2D. Overall good, but trackpad, speakers, etc. less good than Macbook. CPU slower than macbook (8th gen). Less impressed with support from Dell (Ive had both Macbook and Dell notebooks).

- The Razer blade is just insanely expensive due to the RTX graphics cards. Sadly the 4K display only comes with the RTX 2070, no cheaper models, and I cannot work on 1080P. Other than that, the CPU is slower than Macbook (8th gen). Razer was known to have shitty QC in the past, and I am NOT spending close to $3000 on something with shitty support.

 

Price is less of a concern, since I will be using this laptop professionally for the next 5 years or so.

 

What is your opinion? Which of the below would you get for my needs? Thanks!

 

PLEASE DONT TURN THIS INTO A MAC VS PC TOPIC!

 

These are the configs I am looking at:

Macbook Pro 15:

- 2.6 Ghz 6- Core 9th gen Intel (likely the 9850H?)

- 16 GB RAM

- 256 GB SSD PCI-e

- Radeon 550X

- Retina display (almost 4K)

$2400

 

Dell XPS 15:

- Intel 8750H (6 core, but slower than the macbook CPU) 2.2 Ghz.

- 16GB RAM

- 512GB SSD (slower than the Macbook one)

- 4K display

- GTX 1050Ti

$1770 (with current online discount)

 

Razer Blade:

- i7-8750H (same as the Dell, 6 core 2.2 Ghz)

- 16 GB RAM

- 512 GB SSD

- 4K display, touch

- GTX 2070 Max Q

$2900

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how much do you want to pay? are you a gamer?

I'd recc XPS + eGPU

repaste cpu+gpu + undervolt = no thermal throttle + full turbo boost

 


Beta!  X570 VRM + Features list (PM me if you want to help) 

 

Will prob be making an X570 "tier" list when that is completed.

Some Custom Loop Questions, please help answer them.

 

PC (Main)

 

CPU: i5-8400 CPU Cooler: Cryorig M9 Plus   Motherboard: Gigabyte B360M DS3H | RAM: Crucial Ballistix Sport 2x8 DDR4-2400

 Boot/OS SSD: Inland 480GB SSD | Video Card: RX 570 4GB Strix OC | Case: Fractal Design Meshify C White TG (11/10) PSU: EVGA SuperNOVA G3 750

Monitor: Sceptre 24" 1080p 75hz Webcam: Logitech C920s

 

NAS:

Synology DS418J w/ 4x WD Red Pro 6TB RAID 10 (used 7.3/12TB)

 

Phone/Tablet:

iPhone XR 64GB iPad Mini 4 128GB

 

Laptops:

Dell XPS 15 9570 i7-8750H + 1050 ti + 20GB ram (16+4) + 1TB EX920 SSD

 

My old computers:

Athlon XP + 2GB DDR1 (!) + R9600 Pro 256MB Core 2 Quad Q8400 @ 3.4ghz + GTX 275 | i5-3570k @ 4.4ghz + GTX 

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I would honestly get the Mac Book Pro. They are a lot better in 2019 thanks to macOS CPU voltage optimizations and are outperforming their competition. 

 


Laptop: 2016 13" nTB MacBook Pro Core i5 | Phone: iPhone 8 Plus 64GB | Wearables: Apple Watch Sport Series 2 | CPU: R5 2600 | Mobo: ASRock B450M Pro4 | RAM: 16GB 2666 | GPU: Sapphire Nitro+ RX 580 4GB | Case: Apple PowerMac G5 | OS: Win 10 | Storage: 480GB PNY SSD & 2TB WD Green HDD | PSU: Corsair CX600M | Display: Dell UZ2215H 21.5" 1080p, ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED 23.6" 1080p, Samsung SyncMaster 940BX 19" 1024p | Cooling: Wraith Prism | Keyboard: G610 Orion Cherry MX Brown | Mouse: G303 | Audio: Audio Technica ATH-M50X & Blue Snowball
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Posted · Original PosterOP
3 hours ago, Firewrath9 said:

how much do you want to pay? are you a gamer?

I'd recc XPS + eGPU

repaste cpu+gpu + undervolt = no thermal throttle + full turbo boost

 

I want to pay as much as I need to get the best machine, but I dont want to overpay (I feel the Razer is a bit too expensive, but i guess its the gpu).

 

Im a gamer, but I have a desktop for that. It would be cool to be able to play some games on the machine, but that is not a priority. As long as the gpu can display some 3d modelling im good, which should be any of these machines.

 

How does the radeon 550X compare to the 1050Ti in games?

 

Id really hate to have to redo thermal paste on a brand new machine. Does that void the warranty?

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17 minutes ago, maartendc said:

I want to pay as much as I need to get the best machine, but I dont want to overpay (I feel the Razer is a bit too expensive, but i guess its the gpu).

 

Im a gamer, but I have a desktop for that. It would be cool to be able to play some games on the machine, but that is not a priority. As long as the gpu can display some 3d modelling im good, which should be any of these machines.

 

How does the radeon 550X compare to the 1050Ti in games?

 

Id really hate to have to redo thermal paste on a brand new machine. Does that void the warranty?

R550X should be a bit worse than a RX 550, which is 1/2 as good as the 1050 Ti (and 1050 Ti has CUDA for some software)

You don't have to redo the paste, and it will void warranty. I upgraded my ram+SSD, (rather save 400$ then warranty) so I might aswell repaste


Beta!  X570 VRM + Features list (PM me if you want to help) 

 

Will prob be making an X570 "tier" list when that is completed.

Some Custom Loop Questions, please help answer them.

 

PC (Main)

 

CPU: i5-8400 CPU Cooler: Cryorig M9 Plus   Motherboard: Gigabyte B360M DS3H | RAM: Crucial Ballistix Sport 2x8 DDR4-2400

 Boot/OS SSD: Inland 480GB SSD | Video Card: RX 570 4GB Strix OC | Case: Fractal Design Meshify C White TG (11/10) PSU: EVGA SuperNOVA G3 750

Monitor: Sceptre 24" 1080p 75hz Webcam: Logitech C920s

 

NAS:

Synology DS418J w/ 4x WD Red Pro 6TB RAID 10 (used 7.3/12TB)

 

Phone/Tablet:

iPhone XR 64GB iPad Mini 4 128GB

 

Laptops:

Dell XPS 15 9570 i7-8750H + 1050 ti + 20GB ram (16+4) + 1TB EX920 SSD

 

My old computers:

Athlon XP + 2GB DDR1 (!) + R9600 Pro 256MB Core 2 Quad Q8400 @ 3.4ghz + GTX 275 | i5-3570k @ 4.4ghz + GTX 

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7 hours ago, maartendc said:

Macbook

Do you need macOS?

7 hours ago, maartendc said:

Dell XPS

Razer blade

Many issues, personally I'll avoid

7 hours ago, maartendc said:

new thin and light / workstation laptop

Location? Preferred max weight in kg/lbs and min battery life in hours?


Feel free to ask for recommendations if you're looking for a new lappy!

 

My daily driver: Lenovo Legion Y530 [REVIEW]

Spoiler

Intel Core i5-8300H Nvidia GTX1050TI 2GB LP156WFG-SPB2 144Hz IPS 16GB 2666MHZ DDR4 RAM (2x8GB) PM981 256GB+ST1000LM035 1TB

Laptop reviews: Check them out here

 

Who is Clevo, Tongfang, Quanta?

 

My Phone: Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 (Snapdragon 625, 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM)

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Posted · Original PosterOP
7 hours ago, GeneXiS_X said:

Do you need macOS?

Many issues, personally I'll avoid

Location? Preferred max weight in kg/lbs and min battery life in hours?

I dont need mac os, but i do like it.

 

USA location. Battery life min 6-8 hrs preferrably.


Max. weight: 5 lbs or so. Dont want a big chunky machine.

 

The only options I know of are Macbook, Dell XpS and Razer blade. Im open to other suggestions.

 

Thanks!

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Alright so now I am looking at different CPU's for the Macbook option...

 

I can either get a

- REFURBISHED (with full warranty) Macbook pro 2018

- 8th gen 6-core Intel CPU i7 8850H 2.6Ghz

- 512 GB ram

- 16GB RAM

- Radeon Pro 560X

$2300

 

Or a new

- NEW Macbook pro 2019

- 9th gen 8-core Intel CPU i9-9880H 2.3 Ghz

- 512 GB ram

- 16GB RAM

- Radeon Pro 560X

$2800

 

Is the 8-core 9th gen CPU worth an extra $500 over the 8th gen 6-core? Or stick with the 6-core? (6 core has higher base clock) I do use CPU based rendering software, but not sure if the thermal performance / thermal throttling makes the 8-core CPU that much faster anyway?

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Usually high res laptops don't have good battery life (~6 hrs is still OK). Anyway, Lenovo Thinkpad P1 / X1 Extreme would be my choice (customize with UHD panel): business grade and upgradeable RAM. Will throttle if CPU+GPU are stressed

 

Can also consider these:

HP Spectre x360 15 with i7-8750H

Asus Zenbook Pro UX550GE, UX580GE


Feel free to ask for recommendations if you're looking for a new lappy!

 

My daily driver: Lenovo Legion Y530 [REVIEW]

Spoiler

Intel Core i5-8300H Nvidia GTX1050TI 2GB LP156WFG-SPB2 144Hz IPS 16GB 2666MHZ DDR4 RAM (2x8GB) PM981 256GB+ST1000LM035 1TB

Laptop reviews: Check them out here

 

Who is Clevo, Tongfang, Quanta?

 

My Phone: Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 (Snapdragon 625, 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM)

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Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, GeneXiS_X said:

Usually high res laptops don't have good battery life (~6 hrs is still OK). Anyway, Lenovo Thinkpad P1 / X1 Extreme would be my choice (customize with UHD panel): business grade and upgradeable RAM. Will throttle if CPU+GPU are stressed

 

Can also consider these:

HP Spectre x360 15 with i7-8750H 

Asus Zenbook Pro UX550GE, UX580GE

Thanks, the HP and Asus look like good options as well, in line spec wise with the XPS15.

 

I guess I just have to choose whether I want the 8-core, since the Macbook is the only one that offers that, versus the 6-core on all the other machines. Some of my workload is heavily CPU dependent, so I am leaning towards the 8-core.

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7 minutes ago, maartendc said:

XPS15

Many issues

7 minutes ago, maartendc said:

Macbook

Bad cooling solution


Feel free to ask for recommendations if you're looking for a new lappy!

 

My daily driver: Lenovo Legion Y530 [REVIEW]

Spoiler

Intel Core i5-8300H Nvidia GTX1050TI 2GB LP156WFG-SPB2 144Hz IPS 16GB 2666MHZ DDR4 RAM (2x8GB) PM981 256GB+ST1000LM035 1TB

Laptop reviews: Check them out here

 

Who is Clevo, Tongfang, Quanta?

 

My Phone: Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 (Snapdragon 625, 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM)

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Posted · Original PosterOP
8 minutes ago, GeneXiS_X said:

Many issues

Bad cooling solution

What kind of issues does the XPS 15 have?

 

Ive been reading / watching a LOT of reviews on the Macbook Pro 2019 with the 8-core. And while it is true that the thermal solution is not great, it did improve from the 2018 model. So much that the 8-core in the 2019 actually clocks higher than the 6-core in the 2018. It can sustain 3.0 Ghz on all 8 cores for extended periods of time (with base clock being 2.3Ghz). While the 2018 6-core model actually throttled below base clock before the firmware update.

 

I think any thin and light, (including the XPS and Blade, and probably the Asus and HP) will have some thermal limitations when it comes to sustaining boost clocks. They all have the same small heatsinks and 2 fan-design. Fact of the matter is still that the 8-core in the macbook, even within this thermal limit, is like 35% faster in multicore workloads than the 6-core in the Dell XPS and the other machines.

 

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Personally would go MacBook. It does throttle in windows however. 

 

You can also take advantage of Mac only software, integration with iOS if you have an iPhone and they’re generally great with customer support, especially with apple care 

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9 hours ago, maartendc said:

What kind of issues does the XPS 15 have?

https://www.ultrabookreview.com/19675-im-not-buying-new-xps-15-9570/

Personally I hate Macbooks, can't comment on them


Feel free to ask for recommendations if you're looking for a new lappy!

 

My daily driver: Lenovo Legion Y530 [REVIEW]

Spoiler

Intel Core i5-8300H Nvidia GTX1050TI 2GB LP156WFG-SPB2 144Hz IPS 16GB 2666MHZ DDR4 RAM (2x8GB) PM981 256GB+ST1000LM035 1TB

Laptop reviews: Check them out here

 

Who is Clevo, Tongfang, Quanta?

 

My Phone: Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 (Snapdragon 625, 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM)

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