Are Macbook Pro Upgrades worth the extra money? If so which one, and why?

Sep 5, 2018
Hi guys, I'm planning on buying the 2018 Macbook Pro with the touch Bar and Touch ID soon, and it has these specs below for $1699.00:
2.3GHz Quad-Core Processor
256GB Storage
2.3GHz quad-core 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor
Turbo Boost up to 3.8GHz
Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655
8GB 2133MHz LPDDR3 memory
256GB SSD storage1
Retina display with True Tone
Touch Bar and Touch ID
Four Thunderbolt 3 ports

My question is regarding the upgrades that are possible, I'm considering the 8gb memory upgrade for $180.00 more because it would bump my memory from 8 to 16, however there's also a processor upgrade from 2.3GHz quad‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 3.8GHz to 2.7GHz quad‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i7 processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHz
for $230.00 extra.
I'm leaning towards the $180 upgrade, however, I wanted to ask you guys if you think it will even be useful for me. I currently have an early 2014 MacBook Air, but I wanted to upgrade as it's just overheating a lot lately with what I do for work/school. I wouldn't consider myself an intensive user, I mostly stick to Microsoft applications I'd say with R and STATA. I'd also like to get more into steam games, I just started my Masters, so I have a bit more free time and i can't do it currently with my MacBook Air because it's slow in that aspect. Thank you for reading this post.


Sep 18, 2015
Gaming on a Macbook isn't going to be great so unless you're planning to play games like LIMBO, or Rayman Origins, I wouldn't get my hopes up with gaming. For myself, I can only speak for LIMBO. I currently have a brand new 2018 i7 MacBook Pro 16gb and 512gb storage and I got mostly above 60fps. Since I've been gaming on PC for a long time I noticed VERY small lag spikes as I progressed through a level. I can't say for sure it was because of the MacBook (highly doubt it) or it's just the game itself (very likely). Although I didn't look at my FPS count, I can tell that the FPS was high enough to get constant 60fps on the screen.

Looking at the upgrades...

For $180 you can double your RAM from 8GB to 16GB. The pro to this is that you can have many windows open without the computer stuttering and acting weird. I'd say that this might be more favorable for you especially since you'll be using the computer mostly for work/school purposes. The only con to this is that you'll be missing out on the power an i7 may offer, if you even plan on using it to its full potential (video editing, photoshop, etc)

For $230 you can upgrade your CPU from an i5 processor (quad core) to a i7 processor (hexacore). The only pro to this is the extra power it will offer. However, I would personally advise buying this for the sake of gaming as this MacBook contains a hex core processor. As you may know, the general knowledge about processors is that the higher the core count, the less powerful each core is. So a quad core using a single core may offer more processing power than that of a hex core processor using a single core. DISCLAIMER, this may not always be the case, do your research a

Solely because of this generalization, I'd say sticking with the quad core may be better for your gaming needs (although it may never be as good as a PC).

In conclusion, in my best judgement, I say your best bet would be to just use the extra money to double the RAM.