Should I buy a low-end 13 inch?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sennacherib, Feb 4, 2013.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2013
    So after owning two PC laptops that died out after two years of use I want to get a MacBook Pro. My main uses for the laptop will be recording, photo editing, a 200gb library of music, and watching movies.

    I was thinking about getting the low-end 13" and upgrading the RAM and Hardrive myself while also replacing the optical drive with an SSD. With my student discount the Pro would be 1,100 and about 1,350 after upgrades.

    I want the laptop to last longer than 2 years and not gradually decrease in performance like my PC laptops. I pick the low-end 13" because it's the cheapest and the i5 seems sufficient enough.

    I've heard the upgradeable Pros are going to be replaced this July so I figure I have until then to do this. I'm just wondering if it's a good time to go for this plan now? And how good will this laptop be after upgrades? If anyone has done something similar to this what are the pro's and con's you've experienced? If you think I should go with a different Pro setup what do you recommend?

    Thanks for your time. :eek:
  2. macrumors 6502a


    Nov 2, 2012
    United States
    If you main use is going to be photo editing, a low-end 13" (r)MBP might not be sufficient enough.
  3. macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    San Jose (CA)
    Depends on the OP's definition of photo editing; in any case any of the late model Macs are sufficient for the majority of "photo editing" done out there. In fact my late Ultrabook/Windows 8 slate purchase even with only 4GB of RAM, runs Photoshop fine; it's only slower than my MacBook Pro, but it still works.
  4. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2013
    Photo editing would not be intensive at all. Just for a class I have to take. My main concerns are the questions posted at the end.
  5. macrumors 6502

    Nov 25, 2012
    I think your plan sounds perfect, I'd go for it.
  6. macrumors 603


    Aug 3, 2006
    Neither Macs or PCs gradually decrease in performance over time. The hardware stays the same(unless you change something) but the software gets more demanding. This applies to Macs and PCs.

    Anyway, the base 13" model is a good one if you're not doing anything processor intensive. Id suggest checking out the refurb store, you'll get a better deal there than you will with your student discount.
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2013
    Okay, thanks for advice. I will wait for some more opinions to finalize my decision. But also, can someone link me to a thread here that will explain how to replace the 4gb of ram with 8, replace the 500gb HDD with a 1 or 2 TB drive, and how to replace the optical drive with a 128gb SSD and reinstall the OS on it?
  8. macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    I would rather always get the base, save on the upgrades (in terms of cpu and whatnot) and put aside that money for a newer base model down the road.

    So I would get the base and up the ram and hdd
  9. macrumors regular

    Dec 6, 2010
    The macbook will age a day at a time like your other machines. If you want os x then by all means get a mac. If you think they hardware is any different then you are mistaken.
  10. macrumors 68030


    Mar 22, 2011
    Tokyo, Japan
    If its a light photo editing, the low end should be fine.
    But dont expect to do intensive work.

    You can get upgrades like Optibay, SSD, RAMs etc later if you want.
  11. macrumors newbie

    Jan 31, 2013
    i did exactly as you are suggesting. base model for under 1K, then added 16GB RAM and dual SSD. no regrets.

    best instructions are at ifixit. the optibay caddy can be found on amazon fairly cheap."_Unibody_Mid_2012

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