16” users who came from the 2015 15” - thoughts?

turbineseaplane

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Mar 19, 2008
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Hi all.
I use a desktop Hack as my main machine normally, but my 2020 work life is such that I may be getting a laptop again, which I haven’t had since before the 16” was “a thing”...

But - I’m in this quandry where I **love** the things the 2015 flagships offered in terms of ports and the ability to swap in your own NVMe drive, etc... The 16” keyboard seems great in store, but I also love the 2015 era ones (wobble or light leakage never an issue I care about - love the cloud pillow bounce of those keys actually)..

I need to go with a 2TB model either way..
And for my usages, the 2.5/2.8 single or dual GPU 2015 options are plenty of power..

So - given the huge disparity in pricing to accomplish those goals on each machine (around $900 vs $3k-ish), what would you guys do?

I’m particualrly interested in any pro/con discussion of the switch to 2019 16” models from those who’d been hanging onto their 2015 models for the butterfly years?

Would any of you have any qualms about the 2015 models at this point?
The only thing I can find that sucks I can’t use is Sidecar, as I might have found a use for that actually. But it hardly seems worth over TWO THOUSAND dollars to do that. Lol

Thank you so much!
- - Post merged: - -

Actually - regarding SideCar - perhaps I could actually enable that on a 2015 with something like this?


Innnnteresting...
 

Anonymous Freak

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I upgraded from a 2012 15" Retina - same design as the 2015, just older internals.

I have no qualms.

As for "Sidecar" - there's also a third party app called "Duet" that has been offering that functionality for years that I was using with my 2012 Retina MBP plus an iPad Air (the original Air.)
 

Nbd1790

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Jan 2, 2017
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I upgraded at some point from a 2013 15 inch MBP to a 2018 15 inch MBP. I had it for some time, but ultimately it didn't work well for me specifically (the Touch Bar would occasionally freeze) and being that I use it for live performances, unfortunately its a risk I wasn't willing to take. Even touching the Touch Bar with a program that doesn't support it would cause my live programs to go haywire from time to time.

Other than that, the computer itself was great. I'm sure that the 16 inch is even better (especially with a physical escape key). I wound up picking up basically a brand new 2015 15 inch that was used and honestly haven't looked back. Its capable of handling all of my Audio programs with ease. Its certainly a bit heavier and doesn't have high transfer rates as the newer models, but its the furthest thing from sluggish with any tasks. Not to mention if you're purchasing a used 2015 model, you are going to save a TON of money (thousands). Especially if you want to have a 2tb hard drive.
 
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jerryk

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I have had a 2015 15" 2018 15" and now 2019 16". The 16" is the best of the bunch. I like the new keyboard better than 2015 15". The screen is better. The speakers are way better. And the system is considerably faster.

The ports are a non issues. In fact, with so many new devices having only USB-C ports the days of USB-A are coming to a close. Just spend $40 and get an adapter for your UBC-A, HDMI, Display Port and ethernet needs. Keep it in your bag with your charger and you are ready to go.

And speaking of charging, you can charge all you USB-C devices with one charger and one cable. I have a 60 W travel size USB-C charger I carry with me. It chargers my phone (S10+), iPad Pro 11", and Mac book Pro 16. The charger and the devices work together to decide what is the best voltage and amperage for the devices and charger.

And BTW. Sidecar with the 16" and ipad Pro 11 and USB-C connection is very nice. Fast and drawing with a pen is smooth.
 
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turbineseaplane

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@jerryk

But — what about the value here?

$2k+ is a huge delta between the 2015 and 2019 options for me.

re: USB-C.
To me, and for my usages, it’s still a “con” and not a “pro”.

I would “live with it”, but certainly don’t ”want it” and don’t consider it a “feature”.
We have a USB-C MacBook Pro 13” in the house, so I’m not unfamiliar with the benefits and issues, etc, etc

Thx for your feedback JerryK
- - Post merged: - -

Also - to be clear - I’m sure the 16” machines are largely totally great...
The cost and lack of ability to upgrade the SSD (somewhat related points) are my main issues.

For what I’d be looking at, it’s literally 4x the price for a 16” 2TB vs a 2015 15” w/ 2TB NVMe.
That is - a lot.
 
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pshufd

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I'm using a 2014 15 as my personal, 2015 15 for work, and a work-issued 2015 13 as a backup. These all have 512 GB SSD. I leave a 512 GB SD card plugged into my personal for additional storage. I'd love a 16 but no way can I justify one. If one of my machines go I could get the 16 or another 2015.
 
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jerryk

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@jerryk

But — what about the value here?

$2k+ is a huge delta between the 2015 and 2019 options for me.

re: USB-C.
To me, and for my usages, it’s still a “con” and not a “pro”.

I would “live with it”, but certainly don’t ”want it” and don’t consider it a “feature”.
We have a USB-C MacBook Pro 13” in the house, so I’m not unfamiliar with the benefits and issues, etc, etc

Thx for your feedback JerryK
- - Post merged: - -

Also - to be clear - I’m sure the 16” machines are largely totally great...
The cost and lack of ability to upgrade the SSD (somewhat related points) are my main issues.

For what I’d be looking at, it’s literally 4x the price for a 16” 2TB vs a 2015 15” w/ 2TB NVMe.
That is - a lot.
If price is the main criteria, than stick with the 2015. It is a good machine. I liked mine.

But, I was leary about upgrading the SSD since there have been some issues documented in that huge sticky thread. These may have been resolved since 2018 when I last looked.

I disagree on the USB-C, I see nothing but advantages for my usage where most of my devices are USB-C (S10+, camera, and iPad Pro 11) ported.
 
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turbineseaplane

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I disagree on the USB-C, I see nothing but advantages for my usage where most of my devices are USB-C (S10+, camera, and iPad Pro 11) ported.
Truthfully there’s nothing to agree or disagree on as it is completely subjective based on our own usages.

I don’t have any USB-C “anything“ so it’s just lost on me right now and for the foreseeable future
 

pshufd

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Truthfully there’s nothing to agree or disagree on as it is completely subjective based on our own usages.

I don’t have any USB-C “anything“ so it’s just lost on me right now and for the foreseeable future
I have one USB-C device, a Samsung external SSD. I run an HDMI cable and USB 3 Monitor Hubs to connect to everything on my 2014 and the Mini-Displayport, USB3 ports on the 2015. I understand that I will eventually have to bite the bullet and go USB-C but that day is not here; nor does it need to be anytime soon.
 
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Dominus Mortem

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Aug 3, 2011
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Are there any 2015 15" models with 2TB around? Even if they did produce larger ones for that model, you'd be stuck with finding what's available in the market right now. In fact there's a brand new one on eBay right now with 1TB and 16GB of ram for $2295 (largest SSD in a 2015 15" that I can find that's new). So, they're out there still. I wouldn't buy a used one. That would be too much of a gamble in my opinion. You could get one with a funky display, worn battery, etc.

A similarly equipped 16" is $2599 (16GB ram/1TB SSD).

Therefore I submit that the delta is only about $300, not 2k. Go for the new one, the 16" 2020. No brainer.

Upgrading to 2TB in the 2020 model is $2999 total cost.

I've had mine since November. Never once have I regretted it. The keyboard has never acted up. This generation of trackpad is superior to the ones in the 2015 model but a noticeable margin. The 2020 trackpad is simply outstanding, and that's comparing to the 2015-2019 ones that were already best in class.
 

turbineseaplane

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Are there any 2015 15" models with 2TB around?
No - They didn't make those..
But you can get VERY good (nearly mint/new) condition 2.5/2.8 models for $700-800 and pop a third party NVMe with adapter in and you are around the $900-ish mark, depending upon which drive/deal you got on MBP.

The delta is huge. I wouldn't look at brand new ones on eBay. Those are completely gouging prices.

Yes - I know the 16" model would be new, so we are fudging on that part of the comparison, but please try to bare with me on what I'm comparing and analyzing here. It's worth mentioning that a lot of preowned 2015 15's have new or barely used batteries and screens (or both) due to several repair/recalls from Apple over the last couple years.

- - Post merged: - -

Upgrading to 2TB in the 2020 model is $2999 total cost.
So - a delta of around $2k or so - probably a bit more if one is in a State where tax comes into play
 

pshufd

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You can get a 1 TB and add a 1 TB SD card if a lot of your 2TB is more archival than current use. I personally am not into upgrading the internal drive. One other thing - those 2015s are depreciating pretty fast with the 16s out there.
 
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turbineseaplane

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You can get a 1 TB and add a 1 TB SD card if a lot of your 2TB is more archival than current use. I personally am not into upgrading the internal drive. One other thing - those 2015s are depreciating pretty fast with the 16s out there.
I honestly think they are nearing bottom to some extent..

Even now, a good condition 2015 15" is definitely worth $600 (seen some that low) - no question about it.
Total steal at that price for what it can still do - I think
 

Nacho98

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Seems you already sold yourself om the 2015 before you posted the thread, so may as well just get that.

As for me, I moved from a 2015 to the 16" and couldn't be happier. The 2015 felt insanely dated, immediately. And I loved my 2015. And I sold that base model for over a grand after I received my 16".
 
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profcutter

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I have the 2015, 2.8 discrete graphics. Mine came with a throwaway 256GB drive. I installed a sabrent 2TB drive with an adaptor. It works pretty well overall, but I'm getting some stuttering which I'm thinking might be related to idle states, as it usually happens when I stop using it for a minute then come back to it. If I could figure out how to get rid of those problems, it would be great. Just thought you might want to have a data point and know the wrinkles aren't all worked out yet.
 
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turbineseaplane

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I have the 2015, 2.8 discrete graphics. Mine came with a throwaway 256GB drive. I installed a sabrent 2TB drive with an adaptor. It works pretty well overall, but I'm getting some stuttering which I'm thinking might be related to idle states, as it usually happens when I stop using it for a minute then come back to it. If I could figure out how to get rid of those problems, it would be great. Just thought you might want to have a data point and know the wrinkles aren't all worked out yet.
Have you tried out that NVMeFix.kext from hack community?

Also, have you perhaps struck up any dialogue with @gilles_polysoft who is using a 4TB Rocket with, apparently, great success?

Also, thank you for adding your experience - I may use that *exact* 2TB Rocket drive actually as I already have one I've been using in my Hack
 

venom600

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Mar 23, 2003
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I came from a 2015 15" 2.5Ghz with the R9 M390x graphics. It was hard to let go of, but I knew this was the time to make the move. Things I miss are ports. I hate having to use dongles for everything. I miss Magsafe so much more than I thought I would. I really miss being able to have a microSD card in there all the time to augment internal storage. Everything else is an improvement. The computer was terrible at heat management and would throttle constantly, as low as 800Mhz at times. The fans were also much louder and more annoying.

The graphics were nice, but I ran a benchmark against a current 13 2.4 with integrated Iris graphics and the 13 matched or beat the discrete Radeon from five years ago. The 16 is virtually silent, and even when I ramp the fans up it doesn't get annoyingly loud. It does throttle, but not much, and the graphics card is a revelation. The keyboard is a wash for me... no better or worse than the 2015 imho, and neither feels as good as the Logitech K811 I use regularly.
 

workerbee

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Oct 26, 2006
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I miss Magsafe so much more than I thought I would.
Sitting here thinking about getting a 16" today (great coupon available) to upgrade from my trusty 2012 rMBP which is starting to feel as old as I do, with its battery needing servicing or replacement, the display starting to show early staingate symptoms again (it's been exchanged a few years back), and so on.

However, just three days back a 16" would've slammed to the floor when a kid tripped on the power cord, while the rMBP just sat there. Which is to say: Magsafe is just brilliant, and I'll never forgive Apple's beancounters and Ive's ridiculous design fetish for getting rid of it.
 

Dominus Mortem

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Aug 3, 2011
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But you can get VERY good (nearly mint/new) condition 2.5/2.8 models for $700-800 and pop a third party NVMe with adapter in and you are around the $900-ish mark, depending upon which drive/deal you got on MBP.

The delta is huge. I wouldn't look at brand new ones on eBay. Those are completely gouging prices.

Yes - I know the 16" model would be new, so we are fudging on that part of the comparison, but please try to bare with me on what I'm comparing and analyzing here. It's worth mentioning that a lot of preowned 2015 15's have new or barely used batteries and screens (or both) due to several repair/recalls from Apple


So - a delta of around $2k or so - probably a bit more if one is in a State where tax comes into play
If not Ebay then where? No one else has new 2015 models on the shelf any longer. And you'd have to buy used to get a decent price, as you indicate. And face it, you're taking a risk. Putting in the aftermarker hard drive is a good idea though. I've done that on older MBPs and it's been a real good way of keeping them relevant for longer. I just ordered a SSD for a 2009 13" my wife is using for her bookkeeping. Upping the ram from 4 to 8gb too while I'm at it. I did that once before on a similar machine and it worked well enough. I wouldn't say it made it fast per se., but it made it more tolerable. Honestly though, I wouldn't use it for what I do, but for a lot of people it's a viable option. The battery in my wife's computer only holds a charge for about 90 minutes now though.

Maybe I like having a new computer. I use my computer all day long. Not contiguously, but for many hours, and I want that experience to be a good one so that I'm productive. I used to like tinkering with toys and computers, but not any more—I just want it to work and do a good job and be sturdy. I had a 2014 that I pounded into dust that I sold in 2018 for pennies on the dollar. It literally got worn out from being hit with my fingers. Lasted four years though. Great machine. This 16" I have now feels every bit as reliable and I think it'll last four years too with all that I'm throwing at it. I had a 2018 for a year between the 2014 and this 16", and the keyboard absolutely sucked. I could tell it was going to be get even worse and soon. This one though feels rock steady and reliable as the sun rising in the east every morning.
 

profcutter

macrumors 6502
Mar 28, 2019
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Have you tried out that NVMeFix.kext from hack community?

Also, have you perhaps struck up any dialogue with @gilles_polysoft who is using a 4TB Rocket with, apparently, great success?

Also, thank you for adding your experience - I may use that *exact* 2TB Rocket drive actually as I already have one I've been using in my Hack
I’ve done neither, but they’re both good ideas. I’m waiting on the Kext idea because I haven’t seen a ton of success on that thread. I think one issue that I have is that due to the nature of my work, I have to always use FileVault. Seems like most folks who replace their drives don’t for some reason.
 

ascender

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Dec 8, 2005
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If it comes down to cost, then the 15" is a clear winner. As reliable as they are, you're paying decent money for 4+ years-old technology.

The usb-c thing seems to be an issue for you though, so maybe those two things alone mean a 15" is the obvious choice?
 

turbineseaplane

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If not Ebay then where? No one else has new 2015 models on the shelf any longer. And you'd have to buy used to get a decent price, as you indicate.
Correct - all preowned from reddit, Swappa, eBay or local.

No qualms at all about that. 2015 models aren't the fragile feathers that they started making in 2016 and beyond.
- - Post merged: - -

I’ve done neither, but they’re both good ideas. I’m waiting on the Kext idea because I haven’t seen a ton of success on that thread. I think one issue that I have is that due to the nature of my work, I have to always use FileVault. Seems like most folks who replace their drives don’t for some reason.
Interesting - if I go 2015 15".

Before I fully "move in" to it with my data/install, I might play around with that kext situation and fully flesh it out. I totally understand the reticence to go crazy testing something like that if you have an up and running machine.
 
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Howard2k

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Sitting here thinking about getting a 16" today (great coupon available) to upgrade from my trusty 2012 rMBP which is starting to feel as old as I do, with its battery needing servicing or replacement, the display starting to show early staingate symptoms again (it's been exchanged a few years back), and so on.

However, just three days back a 16" would've slammed to the floor when a kid tripped on the power cord, while the rMBP just sat there. Which is to say: Magsafe is just brilliant, and I'll never forgive Apple's beancounters and Ive's ridiculous design fetish for getting rid of it.

I have magsafe and it's a total "meh" for me. I've literally never had it happen to me where the cable has been accidentally kicked out.

On the other side, I'd actually prefer not have a proprietary and expensive charger. To be fair, it's not that I've had to replace it either.

Not a dislike, not a disadvantage. I like the concept of magsafe, but I'm sure I'll actually miss HDMI, SD, and USB-A far more when I eventually transition away from a 2015 machine.
 

turbineseaplane

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Magsafe is one of those things that you may not care about....

...until one day you very much do... :):p

(I am aware there are 3rd party Mag-Safe-Sort-Of options for USB-C laptops, yes... wish Apple would make a 1st party option though. Power delivery isn't something most like to outsource to "who knows who made it" companies)
 
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Howard2k

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Magsafe is one of those things that you may not care about....

...until one day you very much do... :):p

(I am aware there are 3rd party Mag-Safe-Sort-Of options for USB-C laptops, yes... wish Apple would make a 1st party option though. Power delivery isn't something most like to outsource to "who knows who made it" companies)

For sure. Everyone has a different setup. For me I keep my charger at my desk and the cables are securely routed. It literally could not happen that someone walks past and kicks it out.

When I'm using my Macbook elsewhere it's on battery anyway, so no power plugged in.

Again not anti-magsafe at all, but in 25 years of using laptops of various brands it's just never happened to me that someone has kicked the power and it's crashed to the floor. The whole scenario is incredibly easy to avoid.

Just like spilling drinks over a laptop. I've never done that either. :D (so far!!)
 
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