New to Apple World: Which MAC should I get

render
advice
hardware
purchase
system

#1

Hi All,
I’m new to the communities both Mac and Sketchup. Right now I’m using my 4-year-old PC with i5 and nVidia Geforce GPU. I was quite happy with my PC doing my personal work on sketchup, mostly on sketching only, until I learned to render using Vray. Almost every time I rendered the model in a higher resolution than 800x600 it just crashed. I currently fixing my problem with turning on a fan blowing directly to my laptop and it actually helps. I think it might be because of my GPU performance being too old or obsolete to handle the sketchup rendering. SO I’m thinking to buy one of the MAC product lines.

 I've been looking at MAC Book 12 with retina display which I personally like b'cuz of its thin design and light weight but worry about its performance. 

So can anyone suggest me which Mac I should get according to your personal experience? 

Most of my works are Home design. Any opinions are welcome and Thank you.


Hardware Purchasing Advice For SketchUp & LayOut [wiki]
#2

Just a quick note, and hopefully others will chime in. A PC with an i5 processor will likely outperform the Macbook Retina. I am a Mac user, have been for 20 years, but I don’t want you to buy it to improve performance because it may not.

That being said, there are often driver and malware problems that are just more common on PCs, and you may want to look there for a quick fix. However, you would be right in assuming that in general, the Mac is going to have better a better user experience due to the integration and less issues with drivers.

So, my recommendation for a new Macbook Retina is…wait as long as you can. The Macbook Retina is a first generation product, that they will almost undoubtedly improve drastically in the next release cycle. There are complaints about the keyboard, and having used it a bit, I can understand that. The biggest complaint is with the performance though, and if you want to render, I don’t think it’s going to impress you.

If you must buy now, you might want to look at the 13" Macbook Pro with some upgrades to the processor and memory, especially if you have some interest in small and lightweight. The only reason I hesitate to recommend the 13" Macbook Air is because the retina display is really worth it if you spend a lot of time in front of your computer. And I must say, I don’t think you can go wrong if you don’t mind carrying around the 15" Retina Macbook Pro, I love mine.

I hope that helps, if you have any more questions, ask away.

Edit:
I would like to know if anyone recommends setting up renders on one machine and passing them to another for the actual rendering? It could change my answer about the 12" retina Macbook.


#3

The most important aspect of your decision is the hardware under the hood, not the label on the lid.
Compile a list of the hardware/software requirements of all the applications you’ll run on the new system.
Use that as your guide to make an informed decision.

SketchUp Hardware and Software Requirements
http://help.sketchup.com/en/article/36208

V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp System Requirements
http://docs.chaosgroup.com/display/VRAY2SKETCHUP/System+Requirements


#4

I have a MacBook Pro Retina 13 inch, which I like for its mix of performance and size. One thing to think about is that you can drive multiple monitors from Mac notebooks, and so I have matching setups at home and work. In both places I have wireless keyboard and trackpad, and 27 inch monitor. The monitors are not Retina, and that doesn’t ever bother me, which means that arguably the internal screen need not be Retina either. When I’m on the road or doing presentations I’m just using the internal display, but I suspect if it was not Retina that would be fine.

There are so many gesture things that you can do with a trackpad in Mac OS, I wish SketchUp could make use of some of them!


#5

Thanks guys, all comments are useful to me. I’m in a hurry to get a MAC now. I might wait a little longer while my pc is still doing a fine job. Anyway, i lean towards MBP, gonna do some more reseach. :slight_smile:


#6

Saran, Did you end up buying a Macbook? If you did what did you buy cos at the moment I am also thinking of purchasing one.


#7

What would be the best Macbook to buy at the moment to do Sketchup Vray in your experience?