15 in. hi-res vs. 17 in. refurb vs. 15 in. retina

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Fresh Burek, Sep 22, 2012.

  1. Fresh Burek macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2012
    #1
    I'm trying to decide which laptop to get. The options are 15 inch high res (1680 x 1050), 17 inch previous gen. refurbished (1920 x 1200), or 15 in. retina display. The thing is I do a lot of web design and coding so I need something that gives plenty of real state. One thing with retina display is that the real estate seems to be equivalent to 1440 x 900 or so, which is not much. Plus, it seems like it would be extremely difficult to create graphics for 72 DPI, which is majority of users. I love the size of it and how thin it appears.

    Thoughts or comments? I do want something somewhat portable, but as long as it can sit in my lap I'm good. The most important thing is real estate and image quality. I also like the black frame, so anti-glare screen is unfortunately out of question. I think black frame helps keep my focus on the screen much more and helps content to stand out (as crazy as that sounds).
     
  2. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #2
    The retina MBP give you more space. Saying it's the same as the 1440x900 screen is not exactly right. There are 3 scenarios:

    1. The app you are using is not optimised for the retina display. Everything is pixel doubled. You can however go into system preferences and choose a scaled resolution, such as 1680 (same as high-res 15 inch) or 1920 (same space as 17").

    2. The app is retina optimised (Adobe Premier Pro CS6, Aperture, Final Cut, MS Office, Chrome etc.). Here all icons are the same size as 1440 or whatever scaling you choose, however as well, the canvas is larger i.e. you see more pixels. Because these apps are aware of the retina display, content unlike non optimised apps aren't pixel doubled so you see more with 1:1 pixel mapping. So, in Final Cut Pro, you can see full 1080p content at 100%. So, in other words, the UI is crisper, but you also get mode pixels for the canvas.

    3. You can run the display at full 2880x1800. I do this when I'm in Photoshop as the app is not retina enabled yet. Works really well and you get more pixels than the 27" iMac.
     
  3. NutsNGum macrumors 68030

    NutsNGum

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #3
    The poster above me is bang on, the Retina display model is the way to go.

    I've owned all 3 of the machines you mentioned at one point or another, and currently a TB display that I'm now selling due to the real-estate provided by the rMBP. It's easily the most versatile machine I've ever used.

    Incidentally, I also do web design and development, and the difference made to your eyes sitting in front of that display for hours with its far superior text rendering is hugely noticeable.
     
  4. joeysarks macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Detroit
    #4
    Thank you for clearing this up:) I was kinda confused as to how the retina worked, and was led to believe that FCPX didn't scale up for more screen real estate. Now that I know this, I will probably be goin for a MBPr rather than the cMBP or 17 inch from last year, which I was getting very close to purchasing. Least now I don't have to deal with that weight, optical drive, USB 2.0, etc.
     
  5. Meever macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2009
    #5
    You have to remember though even with scaling 17" is physically much larger thus more comfortable when you're using it for extended periods of time.
     
  6. Fresh Burek thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2012
    #6
    Wow great explanation. But do you have to keep switching resolutions and whatnot between programs? I like how fast and thin retina macbook is, I'm just worried it's going to be a pain to design for 1x interfaces (72 DPI).

    I guess I'll have to go back to the Apple store and play with one a bit more. I wish their demo Macbooks had Adobe CS installed. :)
     
  7. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #7
    Yes I agree but I think in the OP's case resolution/DPI > than physical size.

    It's not too much of a pain in the backside to change resolutions. If you go to the App Store and download "Display Menu" it adds a menu bar option allowing you to easily change resolutions :)
     

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