13" good enough or no?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by imoss92, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. imoss92 macrumors newbie

    Jul 8, 2009
    Huntington Beach, CA
    I am planning on buying a MacBook Pro within a week or so and wanted some help on which one to get. I'm debating on whether to get the 13" uMBP or the 15" uMBP. Right now my needs are pretty basic.. internet surfing, checking email, writing essays for school etc. The 13" I'm looking at is the 2.26 GHz with 2 gigs of ram and 160 gig hd. Is this going to run smoothly enough or should I get something with higher specs like the 15" 2.66GHz 4 gig ram with 320 gig hd? Does the 13" screen become a strain to look at after a while or is it okay?

    Also are refurbs worth getting? Are they like new with no scratches or dents etc?

  2. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604


    Dec 29, 2006
    dallas, texas
    If you are in college (or university in other portions of the world) I would weigh the refurb cost versus the edu discount, but they are def. worth considering. The 13" seems fine for your use. I have a 17" and a 9" netbook, so I cannot really speak about the whole eye strain thing; but it should suit your needs. You will probably want to upgrade the ram and the hard drive somewhere along the way anyway.
  3. Mexbearpig macrumors 65816


    Dec 26, 2008
    Go to a store near you and look at the 13". I thought I would do bad with the 13". Turns out it was perfect for me.
  4. brendu macrumors 68020

    Apr 23, 2009
    i was in the exact same dilemma last week and decided to go with the 13" model you are looking at, i LOVE it... the screen is not a strain to look at, it gets the same resolution as many larger screen PC laptops... great image quality and text is easy on the eyes... you will not regret it.. use the extra money towards some other needs..
  5. snakesqzns macrumors regular


    Apr 26, 2007
  6. Eagle51389 macrumors member

    Jan 24, 2007
    I have a 13" aluminum Macbook (2008) and I was worried about the size as compared from the 15" laptop I had before. It turns out that the 13" is the perfect size for class/portability. I do have a 20" external display that I use while at home. It just makes it easier to work on large assignments and projects.
  7. PCtoMAC? macrumors member

    Aug 7, 2009
    In your situation it seems that the only issue might be screen real estate rather than power. In that case I would ask if you already have a another monitor from an old computer or a TV that you could hook up the macbook to? If you do I would say go for the 13'' and just plug it in to the big screen when/if you need more real estate.
  8. nfable macrumors regular


    Apr 9, 2007
    Beer money

    Since horsepower isn't a concern (graphics editing) and your specified needs are fairly light, why not just a MacBook 13.3?

    It'll tear thru internet and documents, be lighter and less expensive.

    I'm a proponent of the refurbs man, they're just swell - I have one from going on four years and can compare it tit for tat with a friend who paid $400+ more for that 'new computer smell' and the fancy box during the same year. Refurbs have the same 1yr warranty and option to buy the 3yr apple care.

    Dunno how the edu discount stacks up to refurb, esp since I hear they throw in a iPod touch now.

    Get your additional ram (when the time comes) from OWC or Crucial.

    13" will be nice size and you'll thank yourself while you're shleping around campus you got one so compact.

    If you insist on MBP, you'll be happy as well but based on your needs, it'll be a little heavier and pricier too.
  9. brh12 macrumors newbie

    May 27, 2009
    Personally, I have a 13" MB and I prefer it over my 15" HP laptop for 2 reasons:
    1) Mac over PC
    2) Laptops are about portability and the smaller then better (within reason - no netbooks)

    Eagle51389 has it perfect with the external display which can be easily done for a smallish price. But again it all comes down to preference and I think the 13" display will do you right. Go with the refurb if you can too, the ones I've seen are MB's that users bring back because they were PC people anyway and couldn't adjust to the changes. Good luck!
  10. michael.lauden macrumors 68020


    Dec 25, 2008
    1. you will be MORE than fine with the 13".

    2. i use my MacBook for school and work, don't worry about the monitor size you won't even notice a difference unless you are used to a 22" or something

    3. 2.26GHz is way more than you need. my 1.66 Core Duo (not C2D) still runs great and haven't noticed any lagging in Coda, iTunes, iPhoto, video chatting etc. obviously it's a bit slower but not so much.

    4. if you buy the higher spec'd machine keep in mine it won't be outdated as fast as the lower end.

    5. refurbs are def worth getting. especially with the nice warranty apple provides.
  11. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Refurbs are a terrific idea; they come with Apple's warranty and have been individually tested and tried, and are very competitive price wise.

    Personally, I have the 15" and I love it. I accept all of the reasons - and they are good ones - for getting the 13". Moreover, I know the 13" unibody is a stunning machine - but ask yourself about screen size and the state of your eyes, and which of them would you find easier/better to look at? I love portability, but I also wear glasses, and I must say that I really like the screen size and quality of the 15".

    Cheers and good luck
  12. dacreativeguy macrumors 68020

    Jan 27, 2007
    Now that the 13" has gone pro and got FW back, the only real limiting factor is the size of the screen. My whole family has 13s while I have a 15. I find myself doing a lot of scrolling on the 13s because a lot of apps and websites aren't optimized for that screen height. The 15 feels a lot more comfortable for me in regular use. But you can't beat the size of the overall package of a 13, if you are ok with the smaller screen.
  13. coldpower27 macrumors regular

    Aug 1, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    I have the 13" and love it, I think it's the perfect size for the laptop. For something so portable.
  14. macjunk(ie) macrumors 6502a

    Aug 12, 2009
    on second thought..is it even worth buying a MBP now? I thought that the MBPs are due for an upgrade early next year??
  15. opera57 macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2009
    The 13" will be plenty fast enough for your needs.. well, a lot faster than you will need! I recently went from a 15" MBP to a 13" Macbook air and I actually prefer the 13". It is quite a lot more portable, and if you find the 13" too small then bets are the 15" will also be too small. Personally I would go for the 13" and maybe add a larger external display as a last resort! [​IMG]

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