Macbook Pro 15 Retina or Macbook Pro 17?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by smcgil9899, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. smcgil9899, Jan 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013

    macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2008
    Hello everyone. I have the opportunity to buy a base model Macbook Pro 15 Retina for $1400.00 or an early 2011 Macbook Pro 17 for $1150.00. I really like the bigger screen of the 17" but the Retina has better hardware. I have owned 17” computers. What would you all advise?
  2. macrumors 68000


    Nov 15, 2012
    What are you using this for. In most cases, I would go with the Retina.
  3. thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2008
    I will mainly use it for ms office, creating sell sheets, light Photoshop, IMovie, Internet, and playing Guild Wars 2.
  4. macrumors 68020


    Aug 13, 2011
    I would go with the 17" I prefer the form factor with the ODD included and the dual GPU is a nice feature to have as well.
  5. macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2009
    Down the rabbit hole
    If it were me, I would rather have the rMBP, hands down. The screen on the 17" is too big for a laptop and would be a pain to lug around, though it is cheaper. The only downshot of the retina you mentioned is the 8GB RAM. Sure you can't save a bit longer and get 16GB?
  6. macrumors 603


    Aug 5, 2010
    I shouldn't present an issue for the uses mentioned. By the time it's a realistic minimum, the machine may no longer be supported on that version of OSX. In a lot of cases I think it's an immense advantage over 8, but that doesn't apply so much to the OP here.
  7. macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    I'm still using a late '08 17 inch MBP and it's a good machine if screen real-estate is important to you. It's not the fastet thing out there but it gets the job done for me. It has things you can't find on any current Mac like an optical bay and an ExpressCard/34 slot that allows you to connect eSATA drives and other devices. I use it for a DVD burner and hard drive dock.

    Early 2011 17 inch MBP Specs from

    PS: This machine will take 16 gigs of ram.

  8. macrumors 68030


    May 20, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    Office and iMovie both have retina support. Photoshop CS6 will have it at some point if it doesn't already. I don't know about Guild Wars 2. My guess is that they'll put it in at some point, given its young age on the Mac platform as well as its popularity. If that's really all that you do, I think you'll be fine on the retina. Though, the concerns I'd have would be being stuck with 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. If you can go to 16GB and 512GB, then I'd go retina. Otherwise, you'll get more flexibility with the 17".
  9. thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2008
    So, is the late 2011 MBP 17" still capable of lasting 2-3 years. I want a fast and powerful computer.

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