When should you upgrade your machine?

I haven’t upgraded my CPU and laptop in nearly three years and I am starting to itch to buy some new technology toys. Time since an upgrade isn’t really a good justification so I did some research tonight to figure out how much faster newer machines may be.

My research lead me to http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu_list.php which has great data on the relative CPU performance.

Exhibit 1: My Q9550 Processor vs. i7-3770k vs. i7-3930k
 I am happy to see that in the past three years CPU performance within a sane budget is about 2.5 times higher and with a budget stretch you could get 3.2 times the performance.

Exhibit 2: My Macbook Pro 13″ P7550

On the laptop side it scales roughly the same. If I want to keep the 13″ Macbook I can get about a 2.5 times increase in performance and if I go up to the maxed out 15″ macbook pro I can get 4.95 times the performance of my current laptop.

The new high end 13″ Macbook competes with my current desktop on the CPU side (GPU is way less) and the 15″ Macbook nearly doubles it! I am also debating ditching my desktop and going with a laptop only.

Now I have to figure out if an upgrade is worth it and is so which one. Game creation tools are fun!


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