Advice on Upgrading from a 2013 MBP

Joined
Oct 15, 2008
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GA
It seems the same to me as far as speed.
I did have some hiccups on the first upgrade but it only involved my desktop screen popping up again after it had already shut down.
It did end up doing a final shutdown with no problems.
The symptom did go away after a couple of the updates.
All is well now.
Mojave vs. Catalina was a night and day difference. Granted my machine is one of the oldest allowed so my difference may be greater than others, but mojave had bugs that just slowed things down. Catalina made things feel more lightweight (kind of like going from leopard to snow leopard was).

Also, for those worried about thunderbolt only, what USB devices are you using on the regular with a laptop? If anyone is hanging storage off these, look into a network attached storage device (NAS) and never worry about externals again.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
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London
Mojave vs. Catalina was a night and day difference. Granted my machine is one of the oldest allowed so my difference may be greater than others, but mojave had bugs that just slowed things down. Catalina made things feel more lightweight (kind of like going from leopard to snow leopard was).

Also, for those worried about thunderbolt only, what USB devices are you using on the regular with a laptop? If anyone is hanging storage off these, look into a network attached storage device (NAS) and never worry about externals again.
USB:
High quality webcam
DVD reader/writer
Professional headset
CF/Sd card reader
Scanner
Printer
...
You name it, I have it ...:)
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
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3,776
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Potomac Falls, VA
I have been happy with my 2018 i7 15" MBPro. Handles all my LR task very well. Video processing is adequate and the PS stack jobs ran in less than 20 seconds.

I do have Drobo for file storage. Any USB adaptor I need works fine. I did get a hub to connect an external monitor, card reader, desktop speakers, etc. I moved up from 21 iMac and 13" 2014 MBP.
 
Joined
Oct 15, 2008
Messages
2,315
Location
GA
USB:
High quality webcam
DVD reader/writer
Professional headset
CF/Sd card reader
Scanner
Printer
...
You name it, I have it ...:)
Interesting. I use the built in webcam, works great. I haven't touched a DVD/CD in 8+ years, my headset uses bluetooth, I plug a CF/SD card reader in as needed then disconnect, and you can put your scanner/printer on the network so it isn't direct connect.

The days of peripherals hanging off individual machines is nearly over...start converting now. ;)
 
Mojave vs. Catalina was a night and day difference. Granted my machine is one of the oldest allowed so my difference may be greater than others, but mojave had bugs that just slowed things down. Catalina made things feel more lightweight (kind of like going from leopard to snow leopard was).

Also, for those worried about thunderbolt only, what USB devices are you using on the regular with a laptop? If anyone is hanging storage off these, look into a network attached storage device (NAS) and never worry about externals again.
I am primarily using Samsung X5 (Thunderbolt 3) external SSD, Samsung T5 (USB-C) external SSD and the new Samsung T7 (USB-C) external SSD, as well as some G-Drive Mobile external SSD. With the exception of the X5, which comes with a Thunderbolt 3 cable, the others come with both USB-C to USB-C and USB-C to USB-A cables so that the user can have each if needed. When I first got my 12" MacBook, this worked very nicely for me as at that time I still had my 15" 2015 MBP and I simply plugged in a Samsung T5 using the USB-C to USB-A cable to retrieve the files I wanted to put into the new MacBook. Then I simply swapped cables and plugged the device, now equipped with the USB-C to USB-C cable, into the 12" MacBook. Smooth and simple! Later, when I bought the 2018 MBP with its four USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports, I was already prepared with my T5s and their cables. Made the job of transferring files much easier and quicker. No fuss, no muss.

I also have some older desktop external drives which use micro-B cables on the end that goes into the device and USB-A on the other end; again, no problem to simply purchase a couple of USB-C to micro-B cables and the devices were ready to go again in the time it took to swap out cables. An Apple USB-C to Lightning cable takes care of when I might need to plug in my iPad or iPhone to the computer. I also have a spare Thunderbolt 3 cable for any additional Thunderbolt 3 devices I might get somewhere along the line. Apple makes cables and adapters to fit whatever the customer's needs might be, and of course other manufacturers do now as well.

My printer is BT, as is my external keyboard and mouse, so nothing needs to be plugged in there (I have the MBP on a stand and connected to an LG 4K external thunderbolt 3 monitor, using it as a desktop replacement setup). I don't keep any of my external drives plugged in all the time, and instead plug one or two of them in as needed for transferring files, running backups, etc. The monitor also powers the laptop so it is the only thing which is plugged in all the time, freeing up the other three ports. It also has ports on the back, and I use one for my Gnarbox USB-C SD card reader, as it's convenient to just keep it plugged in all the time. I have a smaller USB-C SD card reader (Apple) that I use for travel and it accompanies the 12" MacBook when I take it on trips with me. I also always take a Samsung T5 on trips with me as well, especially if I am going to be doing any photography while away, so that I have three places for safe storage of the RAW files: the computer, the T5 and the memory cards.

Back to the home front: there are also various hubs that people can purchase which have all the ports one may need, including legacy ports. I don't need that but I can see how a lot of people would, though. I also don't feel the need for a NAS since I've got just the two computers and plenty of time to tinker with them and the various external drives. Some of the external drives go to the bank safe deposit box, as I like to swap out the drives there each month, putting a freshly updated set into the box and bringing home the previous set. COVID-19 kind of messed up my system there, though, and it's been a while since I have been able to access my safe deposit box, which is becoming more than a little frustrating.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
2,751
Location
London
Interesting. I use the built in webcam, works great. I haven't touched a DVD/CD in 8+ years, my headset uses bluetooth, I plug a CF/SD card reader in as needed then disconnect, and you can put your scanner/printer on the network so it isn't direct connect.

The days of peripherals hanging off individual machines is nearly over...start converting now. ;)
Believe me I tried, the scanner does not support network connection, and no model with the same features exist anymore.
The built in camera had a weird field of view that distorts the nose too much.
The MacBook keyboard and mouse are Bluetooth.
I have been given only has two ports, and since one is power...
I need two external monitors, not mirrored.
Two external HDDs.
Ethernet network- mandatory.
Love to buy and transfer DVDs (now that it is legal in the UK).
Receive my photos scanned from the lab on CDs too.


:)
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2005
Messages
27,101
Location
Moscow, Idaho
Believe me I tried, the scanner does not support network connection, and no model with the same features exist anymore.
The built in camera had a weird field of view that distorts the nose too much.
The MacBook keyboard and mouse are Bluetooth.
I have been given only has two ports, and since one is power...
I need two external monitors, not mirrored.
Two external HDDs.
Ethernet network- mandatory.
Love to buy and transfer DVDs (now that it is legal in the UK).
Receive my photos scanned from the lab on CDs too.


:)
Yeah, but the OP is in Minnesota :whistle: and has different needs.
 
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
1,167
Location
New York State
Hopefully, I will be able to answer this question later today!

My Late 2013 MB Pro threw a black screen so I sent it into Apple for a new battery. Unfortunately, Apple then discovered that its Logic-board was fried and apparently they don't carry replacement boards for that machine.

So a new 2020 13-inch MacBook Pro (the better of the two models with 16 GB of dram in it) is on its way here.
 
Joined
Dec 7, 2005
Messages
731
Location
MN, USA
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #31
Hopefully, I will be able to answer this question later today!

My Late 2013 MB Pro threw a black screen so I sent it into Apple for a new battery. Unfortunately, Apple then discovered that its Logic-board was fried and apparently they don't carry replacement boards for that machine.

So a new 2020 13-inch MacBook Pro (the better of the two models with 16 GB of dram in it) is on its way here.
Well that will make you upgrade. Let me know how it performs.
 
Joined
Oct 15, 2008
Messages
2,315
Location
GA
Hopefully, I will be able to answer this question later today!

My Late 2013 MB Pro threw a black screen so I sent it into Apple for a new battery. Unfortunately, Apple then discovered that its Logic-board was fried and apparently they don't carry replacement boards for that machine.

So a new 2020 13-inch MacBook Pro (the better of the two models with 16 GB of dram in it) is on its way here.
Depending on which 2013 model you have, you may be able to get a new logic board & battery, replace it yourself and still have a laptop that'll last a few more years. Maybe a hand me down?
https://www.ifixit.com/Store/Mac/Ma...a-Late-2013-2-6-GHz-Logic-Board/IF123-036?o=2
 
Back in around 2017 or 2018 I tried Topaz Sharpen AI and Topaz Gigapixel and neither of them worked very well at all on my 2015 MBP, so I got a refund for my payments for the programs and realized that, yeah, it was time to be thinking of upgrading my system. With my 2018 MBP, no problems at all with Topaz Sharpen AI (except some user errors which have now been corrected). I haven't yet gotten around to going again with Gigapixel as it really isn't something I would need all that often....and yet I can be pretty confident now that when I do that I will not have any issues with it on this machine.

Bottom line is: if one is going to be moving forward in their computer gear as well as possibly their photography gear, this means a change, including a switch in the type of ports and cables one uses, but the good news is that the newer machines are so much faster than the older ones and of course they also will be able to move through more updates to the OS as time goes on, too. Once Apple swings into full gear with its own new ARM-based machines, the whole ballgame will change again, as well.....
 
Joined
Oct 5, 2008
Messages
855
Location
LA area
One thing nobody mentioned and which I was reminded of after reading the comments above is adding an eGPU to any system, especially an older one, to improve graphics performance.

Some months ago at work (higher ed IT) I was asked to investigate options for upgrading our Arts computers from the 2013 trashcan Mac Pro's to something faster that could still accommodate external Cintiq monitors.

We were able to get a 2018 Mac Mini to test, both with and without a $500 eGPU. Here are the Geekbench quick results, with and without the eGPU:

Mac mini (Late 2018)
5267 vs 34014

I also tested an iMac and the Mac Pro:

iMac (27-inch Retina Early 2019)
1247 vs. 30716

Mac Pro (Late 2013)
859 vs. 28703

[Then suddenly college labs became a thing of the past and I am now working on remote-access computing projects!]

My point here is, I wonder if an eGPU would help with Topaz performance, as the apps rely heavily on the GPU and understandably so.

As for tenplanescrashing's comment about Mojave vs. Catalina, I think it depends on who you ask, as I have read the opposite on various Mac-related forums. Bug Sur seems to be getting good reviews, even in beta, last I checked. I have each of these OS's running at home on three different computers.
 

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