13" vs 15" rMBP For Work

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by A4orce84, Jun 28, 2014.

  1. A4orce84, Jun 28, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2014

    A4orce84 macrumors 6502

    Apr 17, 2012
    Hey Guys,

    My company is helping me purchase a new computer for work, and gave me a $2k (maybe slightly over if I can sell it) price cap. I'm trying to figure out what would be the better choice for me the 13" or 15" Macbook Pro (Retina)?

    I know there are probably a million posts like these from college kids, but since I'm in a professional setting (traveling around my office for meetings, working at my desk, working from home / coffee shops, etc.) wanted to get people's opinions out there. I'm a system administrator (UNIX), so I live in the terminal (ssh, sftp, etc.) and use my email + web browsing quite a bit. As well a fun apps like Spotify, Skitch, Evernote, etc. that don't take a lot of resources. Finally, I do some slight programming as well (not a ton), but every now and then I'll need to knock out some bash scripts.

    Right now, I'm leaning a bit towards the 15" since I have a 15" 2009 Macbook Pro (non-Retina) for home use, and enjoy it greatly to this day. Thanks in advance for all your comments and feedback.
  2. sonicrobby macrumors 68020


    Apr 24, 2013
    New Orleans
    The 15" has a dGPU and quad core processor which is vastly more powerful than the 13", but not everyone needs quad core and dGPU. Im not a programmer, so Im not sure if those 2 will be necessary for your job (I don't think they are, but wait for experienced users in that field to answer). The 13" is more portable, but slightly. I have no problems carrying around my 15" rMBP in my backpack or just by hand.

    But my opinion, if they are giving you 2k for a mac, why not go with the one with more bang for that buck? :]
  3. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    I am sure that the 13" model offer enough real estate for what you need to do, and it's performance is more than you need. And it will be nicer to carry around, which you as administrator probably would need to do.
  4. A4orce84 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Apr 17, 2012
    Added what I do to my original post. For $2k, I could get a pretty solid 13" or 15" rMBP, that's why I'm here. =)
  5. Trvlngnrs macrumors 6502


    Jun 8, 2010
    If you need portability more than screen size.... 13"

    If you need horsepower more than portability.... 15"
  6. Tsuchiya macrumors 68020


    Jun 7, 2008
    For work purposes, the 15" is a clear winner and is what I chose. The extra screen space is great for long work sessions.

    However, it's still a relatively big and heavy machine IMHO if you need to carry it around all day.
  7. Buehrens macrumors newbie

    Mar 9, 2013
    Fully loaded Macbook Air

    You might also check out a decked out MBA. It would have i7 dual core, 8GB RAM and 512GB SSD. Granted there is no Retina, but it would be fast, light and have great battery life for about $1800. That way you could also pick up Apple Care.
  8. eXan macrumors 601


    Jan 10, 2005
    I'd go for the 15", because 13 is, IMO, too small for doing any real work done on it. If you are concerned with the weight of the machine, note that retina 15 is about half a kilo lighter than your non-retina.
  9. JimWPVB macrumors member

    Jul 3, 2012
    Both great machines

    I have both. The 13" is more portable and gets the most use. But when I need to work on spreadsheets or lay documents side-to-side, the 15" works much better. Both work equally well for emails, web and general computer stuff, without much difference in speed that I can tell.
  10. jg321 macrumors 6502

    Aug 29, 2012
    If it's connected to a screen most of the time like mine is, get the 13". I've knocked a few bash (and even perl!) scripts on the 13" cMBP. For "use strict;" though, I tend to have my monitor connected ;)
  11. Naimfan Suspended


    Jan 15, 2003
    I agree. I have a 15" rMBP and just got my son a 13" - I couldn't live with the 13" as a daily work machine - it's just too small.
  12. Hansana macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2014
    I have the 13 and I'm very happy with it. Don't forget the extra hour of battery you get with the 13" :)
  13. parodigmshifter macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2014
    rMBP 13"

    I went through a similar quest recently, discussed it with a number of Mac experts and I wound up picking 13" rMBP i7 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD. It depends on what kind of use you plan to make of it. More RAM, i7 and bigger disk were all important for what I do.

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