Can I download Enscape on the i9 16in MacBook Pro?

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  • I'm beginning interior decorating school this fall and need a laptop, and am going for the 16" MacBook Pro. What I want to know is which version of the computer I should get. I was told by my school that they recommend getting the previous gen i7, since the initial processing speed is actually faster than the i9 (2.6GHz for i7 vs 2.3GHZ for i9,) and that Enscape only downloads at speeds of 2.5GHz or more. But when I went to the Enscape website, it said to get the latest possible model for MacBook Pro. Something that also confuses me is that even though the initial speed of the i9 is 2.3GHz, Intel has this thing called Turbo Boost which allows for speeds up to 4.8GHz under heavy load, but my school says that Enscape doesn't consider Turbo Boost, it only considers the initial processing speed. Has anyone successfully used Enscape on an i9 MacBook Pro, and would recommend it to me? Thanks!

  • Rick Marx

    Approved the thread.
  • Hi Jonnyfoster


    Welcome to our forum!


    First off, could you tell me where you read on our site that we recommend " to get the latest possible model for MacBook Pro"?


    As we don't officially support Mac at this moment, and Enscape can only run through Bootcamp as seen on our System Requirements page.


    Additionally, the newer Mac's with an M1 chipset are unable to run Enscape at all, due to Apple having pulled Bootcamp support for these M1 chipsets and Parallels / VMware Fusion is not yet supporting OpenGL4.4, which Enscape requires to run.



    And with download in "downloads at speeds of 2.5GHz or more" I assume you mean run?


    Everything up from a Intel i5 as CPU and 4-8 GB of RAM is usually more than sufficient enough, though if you plan on using Enscape with Revit, please also check out their system recommendations for the amount of RAM required. In general regarding CPU and RAM, Enscape’s bottleneck is usually the graphics card (GPU). If the CPU and RAM is sufficient to load your projects in Revit without problems, it should be enough for Enscape.

  • Hi, thanks for getting back to me!


    On the system requirements table of your website, it says to get the latest available drivers, so I assumed that was including MacBooks. I'm aware I'll need to get bootcamp, that's not a problem. I also am not interested in the M1 chip, as I'm only looking at the 16" MacBook Pro, which at this moment in time does not have an M1 model. My debate is more between the i7 and the i9.


    When it comes to the speeds, honestly I'm not really sure how any of this works, I'm just going off of what my school told me for device requirements, so here is what they said:

    "The reason why we require a minimum processor speed of 2.5 GHz is a rendering plugin that we suggest to use will only download with a 2.5 GHz or better."

    And then after I asked which plug in specifically they were talking about, they said this:

    "The plug-in app that doesn’t support a processor with less than 2.5 GHz is enscape."


    My dilemma is that the MacBook Pro with an i9 processor only has an initial speed of 2.3GHz, whereas the older gen i7 processor has initial speeds of 2.6GHz. However the i9 has 8 cores, whereas the i7 only has 6, so I don't know if those extra cores make up the difference in speed, again I don't know how any of this works. I also don't know whether I should take into account Intel's Turbo Boost feature which would allow the i9 to process up to speeds of 4.8GHz.


    If you could clarify for me whether or not the i9 can successfully run Enscape, I would be very grateful. Thanks again!

  • i7 in a laptop is typically recommended because i9's will hit a thermal limit and throttle back performance. Also note that SketchUp doesn't benefit from more cores and wants a faster core clock speed. Turbo Boost is (mostly) a sales pitch to keep your eyes away from how low the base clocks are on laptops. Helps for everyday tasks and multi-tasking when you need it but won't ever sustain boost speed due to thermals. On a desktop, you can easily overlcock to 24/7 boost clock, for example, because you can efficiently cool the CPU with fans and airflow- as well as you have sustained power delivery via a wall plug vs a depleting battery.


    Notwithstanding is the fact that you'll need to run Bootcamp on the Mac as well as the new M1 chip complications. Even IF Enscape ran natively on a Mac, I still wouldn't ever recommend it to anyone. I'm fully a Windows person and would recommend plenty of other high(er) end PC's with much more capable hardware than any Mac - probably at a fraction of the cost as well. And as you have already learned, there are software that simply aren't available on Mac - or can be slower to be released. Lesser so these days, but still an ongoing concern for creators.


    Sounds to me like you are not tech savvy- yet?. We all start somewhere, but please do take some interest and time in learning technology. It's only going to be a benefit to your skillset as you progress in your career. You really should take some time to learn more about tech if you are going to be drafting, rendering, designing and using modern software. Best of luck in school!


    If you need any recommendations for a $2,500 windows laptop....likely something more gaming-centric as they have the GPU you'll want/need vs onboard intel graphics. I'd go for 500GB minimum up to 1TB NVME storage, 16GB RAM minimum and a GTX16 series GPU or a newer RTX3 series. Battery life won't be great on any of these, but you'll get loads more performance. Depends on what your use-case is for the laptop for most tasks. i.e.- will you be designing and using software all day every day or just be word processing, excel etc and browsing the web and away from a wall outlet all day.

  • Definitely good to know that about Turbo Boost, as well as the i9 processor. Would the 5600M graphics card help in any way when it comes to the speed or thermals? I've seen a few reviews of the MacBook carrying this chip, and it apparently boasts a lot of power while being detached from a power source, even beating out the iMac in some tests.


    As I said earlier, M1 is not an option for me anyway since I am only looking at the 16" model, and the M1 chip is only available for the 13" models, so we don't need to worry about that being an issue for me. Also I am completely fine with running bootcamp, in fact I'm planning on it, since I will be using other programs that only run through windows. I understand Apple is more expensive, but I will be using my iPad to take notes for the class, and it will be much easier if all of my documents for class are accessible from the same device I will be using to render. I do not want a windows computer, I really just want to know what's the best MacBook option to run Enscape, even if it's not the best overall computer to run it.


    And no I definitely am not tech savvy at all, that's why I'm asking these questions here in this forum. This is me taking interest and time to learn technology, as I only decided to go to school for interior decorating last week. I haven't found any answers anywhere, through any amount of googling. I've asked my school questions, I've asked on Quora and Reddit, and no one seems to have a confident answer about i7 vs i9 for Enscape, and seeing as Enscape is the only plug-in that my school says the i9 would have an issue with, I figured I'd come directly to you :) sorry if my questions are too pedestrian, but that's just where I am right now, and I don't want to make a $3000 mistake by buying the wrong device.


    Thanks!

  • Go for a PC with decent graphics. You will be better off. Enscape is not supported on osx and the bootcamp will have very poor performance. Surpriced that anyone suggest Enscape on mac at all..

  • Go for a PC with decent graphics. You will be better off. Enscape is not supported on osx and the bootcamp will have very poor performance. Surpriced that anyone suggest Enscape on mac at all..

    This is what I was saying but OP is pretty set on Mac for their own reasons. Albeit I could argue against them pretty easily.


    More than happy to answer your questions. But my answer will always be that a Mac is the wrong machine for this task.


    You can easily take notes on your iPad and do real work on a laptop when it matters. This is probably the best way to take notes in class actually, since it's got awesome battery life and does a good job at a simple task of note taking. Apple doesn't own the cloud and there are a plethora of cloud sync solutions available to you that don't care what OS you are working in.


    I want you to understand that running bootcamp does NOT = windows. It's not magic, it's code.


    I agree that you should be very wise with how you spend your $3k. So I recommend you don't spend it on a Macbook. ;)

  • And no I definitely am not tech savvy at all, that's why I'm asking these questions here in this forum. ... sorry if my questions are too pedestrian, but that's just where I am right now, and I don't want to make a $3000 mistake by buying the wrong device.

    Are you tech-savvy enough to get Bootcamp installed? (not being snarky, just making sure you understand that process.)


    Your school is feeding you non-sensical information, and you are way overthinking the i7 vs i9. Either of them will be absolutely fine for Enscape. The CPU frequency varies constantly between the base and the turbo speed depending on load, temperature, and how many cores are active. Enscape is not going to quit if it briefly drops below 2.5ghz. If you must have a Mac, you absolutely need to get the top-end (5600M) GPU - that will make the most difference in Enscape. I would also get 32GB of RAM and at least 1TB of SSD space as those items are not upgradeable later. So you are looking at more like $4000 than $3000.


    Keep in mid that "top end" GPU on the Mac is basically what you get at entry level on a PC gaming laptop. It's harsh, but imho the "$3000 mistake" is buying a MacBook. And I say that having used a Mac for 3D modeling/rendering for years. You could get a PC laptop that performs comparably, or better, for $1000. Use the right tool for the job and all that - the Mac is awesome for many things, but when it comes to real-time graphics like Enscape, a Mac is not the right tool.

  • Are you tech-savvy enough to get Bootcamp installed? (not being snarky, just making sure you understand that process.)

    Haha i definitely am not, but my school offers the service for free so i'd be taking advantage of that.


    I appreciate your feedback! I figured I should get another opinion bc I didn't feel like my school was giving me the full picture. Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my questions! ???

  • Go for a PC with decent graphics. You will be better off. Enscape is not supported on osx and the bootcamp will have very poor performance. Surpriced that anyone suggest Enscape on mac at all..

    I want you to understand that running bootcamp does NOT = windows. It's not magic, it's code.

    To play devil's advocate here, I ran my Macbook for a number of years almost entirely in Bootcamp. As far as Windows is concerned, it -is- a PC. Given equivalent hardware, there should be no difference in performance vs an actual Windows machine. That said, "equivalent" in Windows world = $1000.


    Keep in mind, if you are dual-booting between Windows and Mac, you'll need that much -more- SSD space, as each OS takes its chunk, and you will have files on both OSs. 1TB minimum for sure.


    I am curious if the school is pushing students to get MacBooks - do they also have PC recommendations?

  • To play devil's advocate here, I ran my Macbook for a number of years almost entirely in Bootcamp. As far as Windows is concerned, it -is- a PC. Given equivalent hardware, there should be no difference in performance vs an actual Windows machine. That said, "equivalent" in Windows world = $1000.


    Keep in mind, if you are dual-booting between Windows and Mac, you'll need that much -more- SSD space, as each OS takes its chunk, and you will have files on both OSs. 1TB minimum for sure.


    I am curious if the school is pushing students to get MacBooks - do they also have PC recommendations?

    The concern is with Apple drivers for the laptop hardware- i.e.- trackbar, trackpad, etc. That can be problematic with bootcamp. You start to get a diluted experience of the Apple-ey things that drew you in the first place. I just don't see a need to force a machine to do something it wasn't intended to do. But I get why some people choose to do so. I mean, I'd want my expensive laptop to do what I want, no compromises also.


    A big problem is that people tend to go to a retail store and compare an off-the-shelf, software bloat-ridden, plasticy $800 HP Windows machine with an obviously more fit and finish $3k MBP. That's not a Windows vs Mac OS comparison. That's just a poor shopping experience lol.


    Would the 5600M graphics card help in any way when it comes to the speed or thermals?


    It'll help...but the MBP is going to be full fans and sucking down battery still while being thermally throttled. Hence the turbo boost issues I mentioned earlier. This is the case with any laptop with a dedicated GPU, though. "Thin and light" exasperate the thermal issue in these mobile-centric laptops- they just don't have the space for beefed up thermal capacity. You want a productivity machine designed to cope with those stresses.


    --


    I'll reiterate- what is your primary use for the laptop? If it's word processing with an occasional side of 3D modeling and 2D drafting, $3k is probably too high of a budget for needs vs wants. Either way, Enscape doesn't run on Mac....and if the university if providing the "service" to put Bootcamp on the Mac, I have some questions/concerns as to how they intend to maintain OS and software updates and how likely you are to learn the ins and outs of it on your own to properly maintain it for YEARS to come. Kinda defeats the purpose of a Apple that "just works," as they say.

  • I own 2 Mac’s, an iMac 27” and a MBP 15”.

    Based on what I’ve just said …… DONT buy a Mac if your planning on using SketchUp and Enscape (or most other rendering engines).

    Get a good gaming PC with an Nvidia 2070 or greater (most now come with 30xx gen cards) This will not only be a lot cheaper but massively more powerful when it comes to rendering.


    A computer is just a tool, and whilst Mac’s are beautiful bit of kit that are very good at what they do, they’re not in any way shape or form a good tool for 3D.

  • Well maybe my tinny bit of experience, cause I'm still driving on edge between macOS and Widows.

    1.I'm mainly architect, visuals are just side-job..so I don't do heavy models like urban sites or hills full of trees and flying birds above the river

    2.I started 3D CAD Archicad in 1999, Cinema 4D in 2003 /those days I was doing also animations, illustrations, etc/, Sketchup since 2005

    3. I had my whole office based on macOS /several MacBooks pro,iMacs, servers...etc/ until 2012-2013

    4. I switched to Windows 7years ago

    5. I have a decent Windows workstation with RTX 2070 and RTX 3070

    6. I left the Vray after 15 years

    7. for my daily job I use 2D CAD, Sketchup, Enscape...not that often Blender, D5 render, Twinmotion

    6. I bought MacBook Air M1 in November 2020

    7. I have two work places-office and home office

    8. Usually I carry my MacBook Air with me to meetings, and to the office, where I connect it to 4K display, do my "paperwork", draw some lines in CAD, do some modeling in Sketchup and Blender, viedo calls, etc

    9. I use the cloud for all my projects

    10. I come home to my home office, start my Windows machine with two 32" 4K displays /which is for me must have for Enscape/, sync my data via the cloud, and do all my rendering during the evening

    11. on a busy day, I take my workstation with me to the office, connect to display /same display as my macbook/ and I use Logitech MX series keyboard and mouse so I switch between macbook and windows machine just by one click...


    Maybe this little info might help... I just put a picture of my work to see that the quality which I produce is not top notch and heavy...


    But my advice is...don't buy a MacBook for real-time rendering as your main work machine...MacBook is fine for mid range Sketchup modeling, maybe some Vray render from time to time...but don't try to push the HW over its limits..especially notebooks /over heating, fan noise, life span caused by overheating/...you will be sad...trust me /better said us all/

  • maybe an idea...buy MacBook with the basic GPU and buy eGPU based on AMD graphic card from a proven vendor...

    I can't imagine working od 16" split-screen Sketchup+Enscape...from my point of view, to use Enscape you definitely need two monitors, bigger-better


    PS. Im not working with videos, all my photos are cloud stored...and I really dont need more then 256GB SSD /I have one external 500GB SSD to make backups/ and all my disks are 256GBs...but thats me...

  • maybe an idea...buy MacBook with the basic GPU and buy eGPU based on AMD graphic card from a proven vendor...

    I can't imagine working od 16" split-screen Sketchup+Enscape...from my point of view, to use Enscape you definitely need two monitors, bigger-better


    PS. Im not working with videos, all my photos are cloud stored...and I really dont need more then 256GB SSD /I have one external 500GB SSD to make backups/ and all my disks are 256GBs...but thats me...

    An eGPU is certainly an option. But talk about out of bounds cost $ per performance, though....Not to mention it's not exactly the equivalent of having a dedicated GPU plugged into the motherboard directly. Better, yes. Perfect? No.


    As for disk storage, I work off a NAS file server and performance is perfectly fine (SketchUp auto-saves will pause for a second, though). Local disk space isn't really a concern. VPN to/from it and it's just a network drive wherever I am. No cloud syncing fuss.

  • An eGPU is certainly an option. But talk about out of bounds cost $ per performance, though....Not to mention it's not exactly the equivalent of having a dedicated GPU plugged into the motherboard directly. Better, yes. Perfect? No.


    As for disk storage, I work off a NAS file server and performance is perfectly fine (SketchUp auto-saves will pause for a second, though). Local disk space isn't really a concern. VPN to/from it and it's just a network drive wherever I am. No cloud syncing fuss.

    Tim I do agree with all about the eGPU. But maybe it might be solution for few months/years how to stay with macOS and still have the possibility to use realtime rendering solutions.


    About NAS,back in those days we use to have Apple time capsule or how it was cold, and it was nice solution but since the cloud solution become more obvious I switched to that, everything is flawless and for me it's better this way. But I not interested in IT so much now /don't use VPN, NAS, too much security,etc.../

  • Yeah, if someone is dead set on MacOS, then that's pretty much the option- just throw more $$$ at it ;) .


    Not to get too far off-topic but....Synology NAS. Pretty simple to set up and use without major IT tech support. Can host your own cloud service, VPN, file server, FTP, you name it. Time Capsule would be no comparison to that. More importantly, massively better backup/security solutions that will literally save a business from digital disaster.

  • Yeah, if someone is dead set on MacOS, then that's pretty much the option- just throw more $$$ at it ;) .


    Not to get too far off-topic but....Synology NAS. Pretty simple to set up and use without major IT tech support. Can host your own cloud service, VPN, file server, FTP, you name it. Time Capsule would be no comparison to that. More importantly, massively better backup/security solutions that will literally save a business from digital disaster.

    I do agree...I'm not so strict with macOS, but seems like there something addictive in it...don't know what...but I don't have such "relationship" with my windows workstation even it was more expensive then MacBook air..funny


    I heard allot about Synology NAS, I remember that the biggest problem was some problem with IP address for me that times...and honestly I don't have great internet connection at home /MW/ and same in my office, so use private cloud might be harder...anyway...what kind of Synology you have?

  • You can get a simple 220+ series Synology (2 bay) with two HDD's as a bare minimum for few users. Should probably bump up to a 920+ or higher with more disks and CPU power. The 220+ gives you 1 disk fault tolerance and the ability to run a schedule of snapshots (file restore points in time). The Synology will also be able to schedule a backup routine to the cloud service of your choosing or a local USB drive. That's a decent, multi-layered disaster recovery plan. If internet connection is an issue, you can have it run a cloud server and use it like Dropbox/Drive if you wish then just sync as needed and capable. All of this comes with the caveat of needing to understand what you are opening up to the entire internet and if you are doing so securely, which you can do pretty easily with Synology. Just a general warning about not doing things the "quick" way.


    Simple question to ask yourself if - what happens to your files if you get Malware/Ransomware on your system, a fire or an outright hardware failure? Ransomware being likely the most problematic these days.