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16 or 32 GB RAM in macOS 10.14 Mojave?
Old 1 week ago
  #1
Lives for gear
16 or 32 GB RAM in macOS 10.14 Mojave?

I'm about to get the MacBook Pro 15".

I don't have large samples loaded. Main sampler is Simpler in Live 10 or TAL Sampler. My impression with some gigabytes of free memory with my current 16 GB running macOS 10.12 is that I don't need 32 GB, really. The new 2 TB SSD drive I'm getting will be very fast too.

What do you think? 16 or 32 GB?
Old 1 week ago
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

I really think you're limiting yourself by just getting 16GB. You're spending the money already for the new machine, with 2TB of storage, you really should give yourself some headroom with RAM. In a few years you may be kicking yourself for it. And obviously, it's not upgradeable.

I got 32 GB on my 2018 15" and never regretted it. My larger sessions definitely used most of it, and the system ran great.

Now I'm up to 64 on the 16"
Old 1 week ago
  #3
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
I'm about to [. . .] What do you think? 16 or 32 GB?
There is not sufficient information about your circumstances for me to make a reality-based, technical recommendation. If you are over 75 years old, in poor health, have a tight budget, and will mostly use the computer for surfing the Internet, go with the 16.

However, I recommend 32 over 16 on such a device as the default starting point. Then there had better be very compelling reasons to cut that back. You will likely use it in coming months/years.

On background, I've 20+ years of professional software development across diverse industries. There are many technical reasons and usage trends behind my recommendation - several will likely apply to you over the life of the device.


Good luck,

Ray H.
Old 1 week ago
  #4
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayHeath View Post
There is not sufficient information about your circumstances for me to make a reality-based, technical recommendation.
Thanks @ RayHeath ! I think I already posted that in current usage in my main DAW, unlikely to change, and using 16 GB I have several gigabytes of free memory. I only create and mix my own music and seldom go over 50 tracks in total. This is unreliable info? I'll of course be jumping from 10.12 to 10.14, but I haven't heard there is a big difference in memory consumption. Maybe I need to study this more closely.

If I mixed classical music and used something like Vienna Symphonic Library I could make use of 32 or even 64 GB. Mostly I use VSTis and very seldom is that Kontakt.

I just don't see when I'd need more than 16GB as I currently never use up the 16 I already have.

Also, this will be a lease and I could change to something else later on. The extra cost is about 10%, which is fine if I need it. But if I don't this looks like a waste. As I understand it 32 GB uses more energy as well.

Last edited by Mikael B; 1 week ago at 02:45 PM..
Old 1 week ago
  #5
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post
I really think you're limiting yourself by just getting 16GB.
Thanks for your view @ MattyJoe !
How would I be limiting myself you think? I can't trust the fact my current use still leaves me with quite a bit free memory (3 or 4 GB) as an indicator I'll be fine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post

I got 32 GB on my 2018 15" and never regretted it. My larger sessions definitely used most of it, and the system ran great.
What are in those sessions? Which DAW?
Old 1 week ago
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
I'm about to get the MacBook Pro 15".

I don't have large samples loaded. Main sampler is Simpler in Live 10 or TAL Sampler. My impression with some gigabytes of free memory with my current 16 GB running macOS 10.12 is that I don't need 32 GB, really. The new 2 TB SSD drive I'm getting will be very fast too.

What do you think? 16 or 32 GB?
Couple of things:
- hopefully you mean the 16’’ and not 15?
- you’re asking this question on a gearslutz forum where bigger/more is better so judge accordingly.
- if it can give you an idea, for fun I recently installed PT and all the Air Instruments and FXs bundle on the family Macbook Air 2013 with 4Gb of RAM and 128GB SSD. I ran the Kelly Malone demo(I don’t have any audio projects on that laptop since I have zero 3rd party stuff installed) and it played fine, system usage being at 65% memory and 25-30% CPU. There’s only audio tracks and maybe a dozen of small soft synths in that session(Boom, XPand, Mini Grand) but a good amount of FX plugins and it went along just great with 4Gb ram.

KA
Old 1 week ago
  #7
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by KorgAddict View Post
Couple of things:
- hopefully you mean the 16’’ and not 15?
Thanks @ KorgAddict !
I can't do the 16". Software updates alone prohibits this (many hundreds of dollars). Then there's hardware. I'm happy with an octacore 2019 15".

Quote:
Originally Posted by KorgAddict View Post
- you’re asking this question on a gearslutz forum where bigger/more is better so judge accordingly.
Yep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KorgAddict View Post
- if it can give you an idea, for fun I recently installed PT and all the Air Instruments and FXs bundle on the family Macbook Air 2013 with 4Gb of RAM and 128GB SSD. I ran the Kelly Malone demo(I don’t have any audio projects on that laptop since I have zero 3rd party stuff installed) and it played fine, system usage being at 65% memory and 25-30% CPU. There’s only audio tracks and maybe a dozen of small soft synths in that session(Boom, XPand, Mini Grand) but a good amount of FX plugins and it went along just great with 4Gb ram.
Which macOS was this?
Old 1 week ago
  #8
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Papanate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KorgAddict View Post
I recently installed PT and all the Air Instruments and FXs bundle on the family Macbook Air 2013 with 4Gb of RAM and 128GB SSD

You are lucky. The MacBook Air is not a power machine.
Old 1 week ago
  #9
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Papanate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Thanks @ KorgAddict !
I can't do the 16". Software updates alone prohibits this (many hundreds of dollars). Then there's hardware. I'm happy with an octacore 2019 15".
What software updates will cost you hundreds of dollars for the 16" MBP that won't cost the same on the 15"MBP? And why can't you run the same software and hardware without updating?
Old 1 week ago
  #10
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Thanks @ KorgAddict !
I can't do the 16". Software updates alone prohibits this (many hundreds of dollars). Then there's hardware. I'm happy with an octacore 2019 15".



Yep.


Which macOS was this?
Baby Air is running last Mojave, 10.14.6. If you can't go Catalina, then yes a 15'' will do. Just pray you don't have too many problems with the keyboard. With what you say you're using the laptop for, I would almost suggest the 6-core i7. Unless you don't mind the fans running loud and fast. The i9 is getting a lot of bad press because it's too hot for such a small enclosure. A lot of people say that the minute you fire up a DAW software, fans kick in and rarely stops.

If you're mainly using it in live situation that's good but don't think you'll work at home peacefully when you're in front of the laptop.

KA
Old 1 week ago
  #11
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Papanate View Post
What software updates will cost you hundreds of dollars for the 16" MBP that won't cost the same on the 15"MBP? And why can't you run the same software and hardware without updating?
macOS 10.15 Catalina is the answer. With 10.14 all my current external gear and software keeps working.
Old 1 week ago
  #12
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by KorgAddict View Post
Baby Air is running last Mojave, 10.14.6. If you can't go Catalina, then yes a 15'' will do. Just pray you don't have too many problems with the keyboard. With what you say you're using the laptop for, I would almost suggest the 6-core i7. Unless you don't mind the fans running loud and fast. The i9 is getting a lot of bad press because it's too hot for such a small enclosure. A lot of people say that the minute you fire up a DAW software, fans kick in and rarely stops.
This actually does not apply to the 2019 octacore. For the Keyboard issues, or anything else applicable, I have Applecare+. Wouldn't get an MBP without it.
Old 1 week ago
  #13
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Papanate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
macOS 10.15 Catalina is the answer. With 10.14 all my current external gear and software keeps working.
Why can't you run Catalina on a 16" MBP? The 8 Core CPU and the allowable ram expansion is worth the price of admission.
Old 1 week ago
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Thanks for your view @ MattyJoe !
How would I be limiting myself you think? I can't trust the fact my current use still leaves me with quite a bit free memory (3 or 4 GB) as an indicator I'll be fine?
Honestly if you're not gonna go with more RAM, I'm not sure why you'd even buy a 15" MacBook Pro anyway. You might as well save the money and stay on your current rig. They're still expensive, even refurbished. Do you ever have issues with the machine lagging or taking longer to load applications? Do your DAWs ever stop and give you notifications when you have a lot going on?

16 GB of RAM for me would make my machine not run as smoothly. And as software continues to evolve, products may come out that use more RAM, since we're all moving towards having higher RAM in our rigs.

Think about it, years ago there was a time when someone might say "8 GB is plenty for everything I do, why do I need 16?" And yet here you are saying you have 3-4 GB remaining with 16 GB. Years from now, you may find that 16 GB in your 15" is not enough for what you want to do, and now you're stuck with it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Papanate View Post
Why can't you run Catalina on a 16" MBP? The 8 Core CPU and the allowable ram expansion is worth the price of admission.
I think he's saying he'd have to update most of his software which he can't afford.
Old 1 week ago
  #15
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Papanate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post
I think he's saying he'd have to update most of his software which he can't afford.
He's saying he would have to upgrade if he moved to the latest OSX - I suggest he stay on the old OSX that his software is valid on. Thereby no additional expenses for the software.
Old 6 days ago
  #16
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Papanate View Post
He's saying he would have to upgrade if he moved to the latest OSX - I suggest he stay on the old OSX that his software is valid on. Thereby no additional expenses for the software.
Which I am when I'm not getting the MBP 16" (10.15 Catalina only) and going for the 2019 15" (10.14 Mojave possible).

Also, it's not only software, but also external hardware, whose drivers stops working in 10.15. Not my audio interface though (RME). Most of my external rig I can't replace right now.
Old 6 days ago
  #17
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post
Honestly if you're not gonna go with more RAM, I'm not sure why you'd even buy a 15" MacBook Pro anyway.
Eight cores is the answer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post
16 GB of RAM for me would make my machine not run as smoothly. And as software continues to evolve, products may come out that use more RAM, since we're all moving towards having higher RAM in our rigs.

Think about it, years ago there was a time when someone might say "8 GB is plenty for everything I do, why do I need 16?" And yet here you are saying you have 3-4 GB remaining with 16 GB. Years from now, you may find that 16 GB in your 15" is not enough for what you want to do, and now you're stuck with it.
Yeah, those are good points. However, at this point I'm bound to what model I can find, as Apple kindly removed the option of getting a model from May 2019. Barely 6 months ago!
I'm looking in other sales channels. Found one, but had to let that go to a client.
Old 6 days ago
  #18
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Papanate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Which I am when I'm not getting the MBP 16" (10.15 Catalina only) and going for the 2019 15" (10.14 Mojave possible).

Also, it's not only software, but also external hardware, whose drivers stops working in 10.15. Not my audio interface though (RME). Most of my external rig I can't replace right now.

You can wipe the machine when you get it and load Mojave 10.14 - then you get the benefit of the faster MB and the older 32bit support.

The reason some software stops working is that Catalina doesn't support 32 bit apps and hardware anymore. Apple transitioned from OpenGL ES to Metal on Catalina.

I would advise not getting the 2019 15.4" MBP - as the 16" is only a little bit more - and has much better specifications.
Old 6 days ago
  #19
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Yeah, those are good points. However, at this point I'm bound to what model I can find, as Apple kindly removed the option of getting a model from May 2019. Barely 6 months ago!
I'm looking in other sales channels. Found one, but had to let that go to a client
https://www.apple.com/shop/refurbish...ch-macbook-pro


Quote:
Originally Posted by Papanate View Post
You can wipe the machine when you get it and load Mojave 10.14 - then you get the benefit of the faster MB and the older 32bit support.

The reason some software stops working is that Catalina doesn't support 32 bit apps and hardware anymore. Apple transitioned from OpenGL ES to Metal on Catalina.

I would advise not getting the 2019 15.4" MBP - as the 16" is only a little bit more - and has much better specifications.
You cannot install Mojave on the 16" MBP. You can on the 2019 15", however.
Old 6 days ago
  #20
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Papanate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post
You cannot install Mojave on the 16" MBP. You can on the 2019 15", however.
Can you tell me why? Edit: I just read up on this. Tim Cook has once again put the Hammer down on the customers.
What I read says the 2019 16" MacBook Pro comes with Firmware that is not compatible with Mojave. One could run Parallels
and install Mojave as a Virtual Machine - but that's not very elegant.
Old 6 days ago
  #21
Gear Maniac
 

FWIW, the differences between Catalina and Mojave are only in how it handles installations, and making apps request permission to do certain things more often than before. 32-bit support is also dropped, but if you’re someone who’s on all 64-bit software, this won’t affect you.

On the installation side, if the installer is not notarized, it will give you a warning about opening, which you can still bypass by right-clicking and selecting ‘Open’ again, just like before. The updates developers are working on are notarizing their installers so that you don’t get that message, which would confuse and scare some users who don’t know better.

Once a plugin is installed, if you’re using a properly notarized DAW with all the correct permissions set, like Logic Pro or Ableton Live, for example, the plugins will run as expected. The permissions pop ups will show up for any plugin that’s requesting permission to do something as part of its function.

Where you’ll run into issues is if you’re using a not-yet-supported DAW in Catalina. When the plugin tries to do what it wants, the permissions pop ups won’t work correctly, causing a crash.

This is the reason all my plugins are working fine in Logic Pro with Catalina. iZotope is the only developer whose installer actually crapped out on installation with Catalina. Everything else, even old installers pre-Mojave, have worked fine after giving proper permission.

Each person’s case is different though, and I understand that. Just trying to reassure people who could move to Catalina and are afraid to. ProTools doesn’t work at all and that’s because some of the underlying architecture was still 32-bit. We have good ol’ Avid to thank for that, as always. I remember seeing that 32-bit warning popup for it in Mojave and thinking, “Wait... I thought Pro Tools is 64 bit now...”
Old 5 days ago
  #22
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyJoe View Post
FWIW, the differences between Catalina and Mojave are only in how it handles installations, and making apps request permission to do certain things more often than before. 32-bit support is also dropped, but if you’re someone who’s on all 64-bit software, this won’t affect you.”
My drivers for some important, older external gear are 32-bit and won't be updated (unless I update it myself somehow). According to the Go64 app, a number of important non-music apps need to be replaced. Some plug-in updates are not free either and some of my fav instruments a freeware and unlikely to be updated.

All taken together I'm looking at $1000 or more in additional purchases. The May 2019 15" MBP will let me transition during the coming three years, so is a better pick for me. This is a lease at maybe $130-140 a month, so my costs aren't that high.

Last edited by Mikael B; 5 days ago at 10:09 AM..
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