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Can anyone help me with upgrade tips for my Macbook?

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I really enjoy playing TLD, but my 2015 Macbook clearly isn't quite up for the task. I have to play on the lowest graphic settings but the game still performs rather poorly. Can anyone give me tips as to what to upgrade (if possible)? I'm not very computer savvy, but not computer illiterate either – and I have changed a couple of harddrives, added RAM here and there, so I know how to look up HowTo videos on Youtube...

What I believe to be relevant stats of my computer:

MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015)
2,5 GHz Intel Core i7
16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
Intel Iris Pro 1536 MB

Any help would be very much appreciated!

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I also have a Macbook Pro around that time-frame there, I never use mine for Gaming though. Have you ever considered using a PC for Gaming? PS. I hope everything turns out good for ya.

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Well, TLD is pretty much the only thing that requires more computer power for what I do, so I can't quite justify the investment. But I'd be happy to know if I can tweak the machine I have just to improve my gameplay just a little bit. Thanks for replying though!

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From what I know MacBooks aren't upgradable, as it happens with many laptops. Only the RAM can be changed in certain models (not in Retina ones I think), but for more info about in which models you can change the RAM you should check Apple's website. Other hardware as the SSD is soldered and can't be replaced, the same for the CPU or the integrated GPU (graphic card).

The only way is lowering the quality of graphics and lowering resolution. I don't think you lose quality playing with low graphics, the unique art-style of this game makes this possible, that's a huge advantage compared with photorealistic games. About resolution, I suggest you to play between 1400x900 and 1600x900. And don't open other apps when playing, although the main problem is not the processor, Intel Graphics are competent but too weak compared with other video cards.

Other option is buying a gaming laptop, they are way cheap compared with a MacBook and it can be a better long-term investment.

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Posted (edited)

Those specs are alright except for the Intel Iris Pro 1536 MB--that integrated GPU is what's bottlenecking you.  And unfortunately, because it's an integrated GPU, you can't upgrade it. (Edit: Yeah, to that one guy out there that's going to say something like 'well you can upgrade it, you just have to de-solder, remove the old GPU, and solder in a better one... Yes this is true, but come on who does that?)

You'll have to get a new machine, I'm afraid.

Edited by ajb1978
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The one thing you can do is get a Thunderbolt-Attached GPU (aka eGPU). As everything Macintosh this is quite expensive just for the enclosure (starting around 250 bucks), but as TLD isn't the most demanding title ever you would be totally fine with a rather inexpensive RX 570 for 150 bucks (or if you feel like spending grab a Vega 56 for 250 before they go out of stock).

The big upside is that you can keep your otherwise perfectly fine MB2015 as it is (at least as fine as Apple hardware goes ...), and still don't need to buy a second computer. Plus it's a solid choice for pretty much any other game as your CPU (and RAM) is still good for pretty much any AAA title out there, and will most likely continue to be for at least 2 more years.

The big downside is that you become stationary while gaming. I'd personally wouldn't find that to be a drawback, but maybe you do. Plus these GPUs aren't exactly silent in their tiny enclosures.

If you are wondering what I mean: Such a thing https://www.newegg.com/powercolor-model-gaming-station/p/N82E16814131735?Description=egpu enclosure&cm_re=egpu_enclosure-_-14-131-735-_-Product

Or this one with an actually pre-installed RX 570 (if you don't want put your own GPU into a case) https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E16814999058?Description=rx 570 egpu&cm_re=rx_570_egpu-_-14-999-058-_-Product

Please note that I cannot give a recommendation for a good enclosure however since I never used one. If the above choices suck I am genuinely sorry. Best to hit youtube and scour for a few reviews. These eGPUs have become quite popular among people sporting an Ultrabook that want to game at home, but not use a second PC.

Important: If you go this route you will have to stick with an AMD GPU as newer Nvidia cards don't work with MacOS, especially not High Sierra and Mojave.

The only other ways to go here are actually: a) ditch your 2015 MB, and get a new 15" MB Pro with an RX 555 or 560 (which are both significatly worse than the RX570 I recommend), and I don't have to tell you what kind of hole that's going to tear into your wallet (for anyone who doesn't wanna look: north of 2800$). b) ditch MacOS as a whole and get a $1300-ish notebook with a GTX1060/1660. But I know that people hardly ever go back after being Mac'd.

Chose your poison, mate 😉

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On 6/23/2019 at 5:46 AM, ajb1978 said:

Those specs are alright except for the Intel Iris Pro 1536 MB--that integrated GPU is what's bottlenecking you.  And unfortunately, because it's an integrated GPU, you can't upgrade it. (Edit: Yeah, to that one guy out there that's going to say something like 'well you can upgrade it, you just have to de-solder, remove the old GPU, and solder in a better one... Yes this is true, but come on who does that?)

You'll have to get a new machine, I'm afraid.

 

On 6/30/2019 at 12:46 AM, jeffpeng said:

The one thing you can do is get a Thunderbolt-Attached GPU (aka eGPU). As everything Macintosh this is quite expensive just for the enclosure (starting around 250 bucks), but as TLD isn't the most demanding title ever you would be totally fine with a rather inexpensive RX 570 for 150 bucks (or if you feel like spending grab a Vega 56 for 250 before they go out of stock).

The big upside is that you can keep your otherwise perfectly fine MB2015 as it is (at least as fine as Apple hardware goes ...), and still don't need to buy a second computer. Plus it's a solid choice for pretty much any other game as your CPU (and RAM) is still good for pretty much any AAA title out there, and will most likely continue to be for at least 2 more years.

The big downside is that you become stationary while gaming. I'd personally wouldn't find that to be a drawback, but maybe you do. Plus these GPUs aren't exactly silent in their tiny enclosures.

If you are wondering what I mean: Such a thing https://www.newegg.com/powercolor-model-gaming-station/p/N82E16814131735?Description=egpu enclosure&cm_re=egpu_enclosure-_-14-131-735-_-Product

Or this one with an actually pre-installed RX 570 (if you don't want put your own GPU into a case) https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E16814999058?Description=rx 570 egpu&cm_re=rx_570_egpu-_-14-999-058-_-Product

Please note that I cannot give a recommendation for a good enclosure however since I never used one. If the above choices suck I am genuinely sorry. Best to hit youtube and scour for a few reviews. These eGPUs have become quite popular among people sporting an Ultrabook that want to game at home, but not use a second PC.

Important: If you go this route you will have to stick with an AMD GPU as newer Nvidia cards don't work with MacOS, especially not High Sierra and Mojave.

The only other ways to go here are actually: a) ditch your 2015 MB, and get a new 15" MB Pro with an RX 555 or 560 (which are both significatly worse than the RX570 I recommend), and I don't have to tell you what kind of hole that's going to tear into your wallet (for anyone who doesn't wanna look: north of 2800$). b) ditch MacOS as a whole and get a $1300-ish notebook with a GTX1060/1660. But I know that people hardly ever go back after being Mac'd.

Chose your poison, mate 😉

Thanks both of you for helpful and informative replies. I'll have to look into that eGPU thing!

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On 6/22/2019 at 2:20 PM, LilWolf said:

From what I know MacBooks aren't upgradable, as it happens with many laptops. Only the RAM can be changed in certain models (not in Retina ones I think), but for more info about in which models you can change the RAM you should check Apple's website. Other hardware as the SSD is soldered and can't be replaced, the same for the CPU or the integrated GPU (graphic card).

The only way is lowering the quality of graphics and lowering resolution. I don't think you lose quality playing with low graphics, the unique art-style of this game makes this possible, that's a huge advantage compared with photorealistic games. About resolution, I suggest you to play between 1400x900 and 1600x900. And don't open other apps when playing, although the main problem is not the processor, Intel Graphics are competent but too weak compared with other video cards.

Other option is buying a gaming laptop, they are way cheap compared with a MacBook and it can be a better long-term investment.

Thanks for the tips!

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