13" MBP Now, Wait, or Go 15", Bounce Thoughts Off Please!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by beatledud, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. beatledud macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 4, 2006
    #1
    I currently have a 2.33 GHz 15" MBP. I've upgraded to 3GB of RAM, a Seagate 7200RPM 500GB HDD, and Snow Leopard. Its getting taken into Apple for a new screen, super drive, and battery right before it's Apple Care ends, and when it comes back it will be in the best shape it's gonna be before it starts to wear again with no hope of free repairs.

    I'm done with school, and I was trying to be an architect, but due to the economy I'm an IT manager for now. At some point, I'll be back into architecture again though. My MBP served me extremely well, but lately it is getting a bit slower, and I know it doesn't truly utilize Snow Leopard because it's too old on the MBP line. With the upgrades I've done, the Good condition, and the accessories (BookEndz dock, memory stick express card, Felt case, bluetooth Mighty Mouse) I should get about $1,000 to $1,300 for it ($950 seemed to be the rock bottom price on used 2.33GHz sold on ebay, no upgrades or accessories). So now I'm Eying the 13" MBP Unibody.

    Reasons to get the 13" MBP Unibody Now:
    Spec for Spec it's either as good or better than my old 15 MBP. I'm looking at the 2.53 13" Unibody. The HDD is smaller and slower, yes, but 250GB should still be ok with me. I could always either keep my 500GB or live with the 250GB and upgrade again down the road if I need to. With the newer technology, SL should also make this computer faster than what I have. And I can get it from Apple's Refurb site for $1,300, so I may be able to upgrade for little to no $!

    Also, I have an iPhone now, and it's great as a portable computer that I can take everywhere. However sometimes you just need a portable laptop for certain things, and the 15" isn't too portable. Since it's not like I'm going to studio anymore, and while I do use Adobe and other intensive programs sometimes, it doesn't need to be the fastest machine around. I get by just fine now, so I figure I should get by alright on the 13". Plus the lighter and smaller laptop will make this thing way easier for me to carry around more and travel with. I have a 21" Widescreen at home when I need extra real-estate.

    Reasons to Wait:
    There's two new technologies I'm excited for. The first is the new i5 and i7 processors. I'd love to get one of these in a 13 MBP, but I don't know when they'll come (I know iMac will have them available soon) how much extra they'll be, and if the 13" will even get them (either limited to just i5 or none at all) since it's hardly treated like a 'Pro' machine. The other technology is USB 3! Man it's so fast, but I don't know when it will finally hit Apple's lineup, and when devices start to utilize USB 3, maybe I'm onto a new computer by then. Also, I really don't have much money to spend, if any, so if I can't do this on the cheap (ie Selling my old MBP for most of the cash), then it won't happen.

    Also the Tablet is coming! But then again, this will have to be my main computer for a while, and I doubt the Table will be able to handle that. Not to mention I can't see that much separation from my iPhone in a tablet design.

    Reasons to go 15"
    If ultimately I went the 15" route, then I'd almost certainly be waiting due to $$. The 15" should have i5s and i7s eventually, as well as USB3. I love the better video card and dual option, and that SL can use BOTH with OpenGL. Which reminds me, I know the 13" has 256 MB of DDR3 on it's vcard, but what about GPU processing power compared to the old 2.33 15" MBP? Is it better or worse overall? The real estate thing it's too big for me since I have my external monitor and I'm not running CS4 away from home like I used to in school. The better and dual videocard element really upsets me that it isn't in the 13". UPDATE: I also really dislike the glossy screen and I'm worried I wouldn't get used to it. Since I have dreams of taking this thing with me a lot more and being outside with it, this could be a problem. The 15" you can get the matte screen of course.

    I should also note that I'll be building my own Hackintosh probably in 6-8 months, and will have a nice screaming fast computer down the road, alleviating that duty as the workhorse from this new laptop. It will take on that role for a while though. The 2.33 15" MBP I have will also undoubtedly lose resale value the longer I wait also.
     
  2. Belm macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #2
    I've been going back and forward on whether I should get the 13" MBP now or wait. Like you said, we could be waiting forever for the i5/i7's and even when they do come out, who's to say that the 13" Pro will even get one. I think I'll wait a couple more weeks to see if the MBPs get a small refresh and then buy one. I know that probably didn't help you at all :p
     
  3. hypertc13 macrumors regular

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    Jun 17, 2009
    #3
    Question for you. is your screen and battery actually messed up. if so why not just get them fixed now?
     
  4. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

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    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #4
    I just can't wait for the 15-in uMBP to get the i5s/ i7s. And also a (better?) graphics card.

    I really can't decide what to do. Wait, get the current 15-in, 27" iMac (though portability is a main concern, but would function as a external display)?
     
  5. MacKiddyWiddy macrumors 6502

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    Aug 18, 2009
    #5
    mate all i can say is that your gonna be waiting a hella long time for these upgrades you want... thats why im saying go now [​IMG]
     
  6. yoda13 macrumors 65816

    yoda13

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2003
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    Texas
    #6
    I say go now, playing the waiting game can be a killer...you can wait for ever, not get the upgrades you want, then you have to do something and you must resort to buying technology that is not as fresh as it would be if you buy the new product now...;)
     
  7. skye12 macrumors 65816

    skye12

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    #7
    I just don't think you will be happy with that 13" screen.
     
  8. beatledud thread starter macrumors 6502

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    May 4, 2006
    #8
    Well it brings up a point of concern, what is everyone's expectation for their next refresh. I mean if it was 2-3 weeks they probably would have announced everything at once. I'm thinking maybe a new refresh in time for X-mas, but then maybe they hold off until after to purge their inventory. But then it starts to come close to rumored Tablet launch. Would they do both of those together?

    Yes, they are messed up, along with the superdrive. I took my MBP in last night, got the battery replaced and it was sent off for the screen and superdrive, all with only 7 days left on my Apple Care.

    Well how long until a refresh is the true question here. Macrumor's buyer's guide show 138 days since last update with the average at 200 days. With a major new processor already hitting their iMacs now, it seems like it will shortly get a refresh, and even if the 13" don't see the i5s or i7s, you'd think the see some change (upgrade in HDD, some small new feature, some core chipset or component change that could make a difference in a software update down the road, price drop, etc). Of course unless there is a good price drop, I'm probably waiting a few weeks after that to purchase it from Apple Refurbish. But the question is, how long is that really going to be, before the holiday season or after? In line with Tablet or just before. Is The Tablet going to be at the end of the Q1 and a refresh of MBP in the beginning or middle? Ultimately this is a balance of smart buying a product before it's refresh and getting the most money I can for my current MBP since it's value will degrade.

    Well that is a concern of mine. At the store I played the compare game, and I noticed I had a hard time finding/distinguishing the 15" MBP (although I think there were just less of them on the tables). But I could easily spot the 17". I would say that would mean I'd be ok with the 13" compared to what I'm used to now. And currently I just don't like doing major graphic stuff on my laptop by itself. I usually always have to hook it up to an external keyboard/mouse and my external monitor. So if the 13" is lighter and more portable and faster to some degree with a few new features and a better battery for little to no upgrade, well it's hard to argue with that.
     
  9. beatledud thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 4, 2006
    #9
    Here's another thing to look at, let's see what you guys think is the value of the items I'd be selling. If it's closer to the 13" price, then it's easier to say, just upgrade for "freeish":

    2.33 GHz 15" MBP, 3GB Ram, 500GB 7200RPM HDD, Snow Leopard:
    Most going on ebay used with 300GB-500GB HDD go for $930-1050, with few not selling.

    Incase Neoprene Sleeve - $40 Retail.
    Apple Bluetooth Mighty Mouse - $60 Retail.
    Belkin Express Card for Memory Sticks - $30 Retail.
    Bookendz Dock - $300 Retail.
    Total: $430

    I'm hoping to get an extra $200 for the accessories which is about 54% off of the Retail (knowing that the Mouse and Belkin aren't worth full price retail cost even if they were new).

    Condition: The MBP is scratched a lot on the bottom, had a few knicks on the top, but that should be fixed when they replace the screen, and the top casing has some wear at the bottom edge and far left edge where the palms rest, but I should note it's just along the edge, it isn't like a big palm side smudge. It's a smudging of the finish, like it's not as shiny anymore. The body by the CD-Rom drive and ports aren't bent up like other MBPs get, pretty good condition. Overall I'd say the exterior condition is in Good, but not quite Great shape, mostly due to the bottom which you never see. It will be out of Warranty, but will have a brand new battery, new screen, and new superdrive (and possible logic board).

    So With everything, I was going to shoot for $1,300 min for my configuration which will match the max 13" uMBP at Apple Refurb site. Just add tax and plan on spending $250 in a years time for Apple Care.
     
  10. tempusfugit macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago
    #10
    the 15" resolution is a joke compared to the 17. If i didn't get my 13" (which I got with portability in mind, being that I take it to work every day) I would have gone with the 17 because the resolution difference between the 13" and 15" is nowhere near as significant as the gap between 15" and 17".


    That said, I would just get one if you really need it. This thing is sexy, its powerful, the graphics card does everything but gaming and really intensive HD editing, and its a fantastic overall machine.

    I got an ACD and it works AMAZING with it, but I'm returning it and putting the $$ towards a new imac in a couple of months. I wish I didn't have to go back to the no external monitor situation but given that the new imacs double as simply monitors, it will bring me a lot more utility in the future if I return the ACD while I still can.
     
  11. caonimadebi macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 7, 2009
    #11
    you may want to check again how much your MBP is really worth. On craiglist, $1200-$1300 can get you a 17" MBP in the same product cycle, many with Applecare remaining. Sadly, accessories (or apps) do not really add to the value of the package, because the buyer likely won't share your taste of accessories. With the latest MBPs starting at $1199, the 2.33Ghz circa-2006 MBP seems to fetch around $750-$1000 on craigslist.
    eBay Mac listings are generally considered overpriced.
     
  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #12
    Wirelessly posted (Nokia 5800 Tube XpressMusic : Mozilla/5.0 (SymbianOS/9.4; U; Series60/5.0 Nokia5800d-1/21.0.101; Profile/MIDP-2.1 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 ) AppleWebKit/413 (KHTML, like Gecko) Safari/413)

    You really think you'll get that much for a somewhat ancient 2.33 GHz MBP?
     
  13. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

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    Italy
    #13
    It's sad now that a 2.33 GHz is labled ancient. Seeing the uMBP lineup is still within that range.
     
  14. beatledud thread starter macrumors 6502

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    May 4, 2006
    #14
    Abstract: not to mention I was going off of ebay completed sales and out of 20 only 2 weren't sold and thats because their min was lik 1200 with 3GB Ram and 300GB HD. So don't be all high and mighty until you do the research like I did.

    I only would ask that amount if I found that the market was paying that much for it. And yes, craigs list is a bit less because there are no fees to pay. Ebay gets a bit wider audience.
     
  15. 1rottenapple macrumors 65816

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    #15
    Man who in their right mind would by an old mbp for more than 1000 is crazy. Then again a sucker is out there somewhere.
     
  16. bumzo1 macrumors 6502a

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    Dallas, TX
    #16
    no point in waiting for the i5 or i7 found in the iMac because it is actually a desktop processor (for once) and will not fit in the uMBP
     
  17. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    Yet there are laptops from other vendors equipped with the i7?
     
  18. LeviG macrumors 65816

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    Norfolk, UK
    #18
    that would be the mobile version of the i7 cpu
     
  19. Cricketman macrumors regular

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    Nov 30, 2008
    #19
    13' MBP sounds perfect for you. Consider bumping up the specs (HDD, RAM etc) at a later time. You're breaking even anyways, why not splurge an extra 100 or so to maximize this machine for a few more years.
     
  20. Maserati7200 macrumors 6502a

    Maserati7200

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    #20
    If the i5/i7 comes to the MBP, I highly doubt it's coming to the 13". I'm thinking it would be a BTO option on the high end 15" and the 17". And if they come on those computers, it's going to be after holiday season 2009.
     
  21. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

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    #21
    Yeah, what I meant is, those who are waiting can still wait for the mobile version of the i7.
     
  22. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    Holiday season 2009 as in this Christmas?
     
  23. Maserati7200 macrumors 6502a

    Maserati7200

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    #23
    Yeah. Christmas/Hanuka/Quanza/anyotherholidayduringthattime
     
  24. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

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    #24
    That's all I want.


    Except then I wouldn't want to get a Rev A product.
     
  25. beatledud thread starter macrumors 6502

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    May 4, 2006
    #25
    Um, except, like others have mentioned, there are laptop versions of the i5 and i7. So they will come to the line eventually.

    Yeah, that's what I'm afraid off, although Macrumor's most recent post about the additional MBP models suggests that they will see them in the near future, but only two 6.x model numbers would suggest the 13" and lower end 15" will be left out.

    Exactly, the argument here isn't whether or not it's worth that much, or that I'm an idiot or crazy for thinking that. The going rate is that or a bit lower, and that's all that matters, that there are people out there willing to spend that much for it, and I'll gladly take their money.
     

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