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Old 01-21-2022, 02:57 PM   #1
beermao
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Default 2015 16GB Macbook Pro - will it last me a few years with Reaper?

I'm looking for a used 15" Macbook for around £500 ($680) to take travelling with me, just for web browsing and making some tunes with Reaper, which hopefully will last at least a couple of years before I need to upgrade. Do you think a 2015 Macbook Pro will suffice?

I just need something that will handle up to 50 tracks, some of them with Serum or Vital, but most less cpu-intensive than that, or is this just wishful thinking for a machine at that price-point?
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Old 01-23-2022, 06:42 AM   #2
DrKev
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That's exactly what I have (I just upgraded a few weeks back). You'll have no major problems. With 16GB of ram you can easily handle a serious project with 100+ tracks, assuming the processor is up to the plugin load you use. With minimal plugin use, you'll probably never have enough tracks to run out of memory. You can edit video quite nicely too with 16GB.

I did spring for the fastest processor, which will allow me more freedom with plugins but faster means a little hotter so the fan runs more often too. I also went for 500GB SSD instead of 256GB, which I found a little limiting on my last MBP. For 15", 500GB, 16GB Ram, 2.8Ghz processor I paid a little under $900, which includes shipping and tax. You can get cheaper with lower spec and cosmetic condition.

My previous laptop was a 2012 15" MBP, which I bought used in 2016. The battery life eventually dropped to near nothing and it started having some weird other issues, but I fully expect a 2015 model to last another 5 years before I have similar issues.

Also note that I am currently running macOS Monterey and all is well.
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Last edited by DrKev; 01-23-2022 at 07:00 AM.
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Old 01-23-2022, 03:07 PM   #3
beermao
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrKev View Post
That's exactly what I have (I just upgraded a few weeks back). You'll have no major problems. With 16GB of ram you can easily handle a serious project with 100+ tracks, assuming the processor is up to the plugin load you use. With minimal plugin use, you'll probably never have enough tracks to run out of memory. You can edit video quite nicely too with 16GB.

I did spring for the fastest processor, which will allow me more freedom with plugins but faster means a little hotter so the fan runs more often too. I also went for 500GB SSD instead of 256GB, which I found a little limiting on my last MBP. For 15", 500GB, 16GB Ram, 2.8Ghz processor I paid a little under $900, which includes shipping and tax. You can get cheaper with lower spec and cosmetic condition.

My previous laptop was a 2012 15" MBP, which I bought used in 2016. The battery life eventually dropped to near nothing and it started having some weird other issues, but I fully expect a 2015 model to last another 5 years before I have similar issues.

Also note that I am currently running macOS Monterey and all is well.
I think my budget should just about be able to stretch to $900 - this is good to hear. A very helpful and informative reply, thanks very much, DrKev.
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Old 01-29-2022, 07:02 AM   #4
bigtop
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You should be ok.
I'm running REAPER on a Mid 2013 11 inch Mac Air. i7 haswell dual core. 8Gb RAM. 500 Gb internal SSD. I run Omnisphere and Xpand and Superior Drummer2 through the internal SSD and Komplete 13 and Spitfire orchestral libraries from an external 1Tb SSD. connected via USB3 powered hub. Interface is Thunderbolt.

To my amazement it goes like a train. I suspect the biggest reason for this is all 64 bit and rapid connectivity with thunderbolt/USB 3. Still amazed and waiting for the day when I have to upgrade but not so far. I suppose the UAD DSP helps during tracking.
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Old 01-29-2022, 09:21 AM   #5
matthewbarnhart
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I have this exact computer as well, it works fine for REAPER. I'm mixing mostly audio (and a few VSTs here and there) at 96k.

I'm upgrading to a new M1 14", but mostly out of bourgeois vanity (and better battery life). I could probably make the 2015 work for another year or two without major hassles if I needed to.
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Old 01-30-2022, 06:20 PM   #6
Patrice Brousseau
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My MBP early 2011 still cope with modest projects and my (new to me) 2015 Retina is quite powerful for my needs. So, 👍
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