2 models of MBP comparison

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by pirlo2000, Sep 5, 2013.

  1. pirlo2000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2012
    Hello folks,

    It is apparently my first topic on this forum.. i always read post on it but this is my first real question..

    Am going to buy MBP, and i according to my budget (maximum : 2000$) i short listed the options into two:


    13-inch: 2.9GHz
    2.9GHz dual-core Intel Core i7
    Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    750GB 5400-rpm hard drive1
    Intel HD Graphics 4000


    13-inch: 2.6GHz with Retina display
    2.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    Turbo Boost up to 3.2GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    256GB flash storage1
    Intel HD Graphics 4000

    My purposes mainly:
    - mainly browsing, movies, some applications but not much resoureces extensive ones (such as MATLAB, wireshark...etc if u know it), light games.
    - i plan to install bootcamp to put windows 8 together with MAC OS.

    Now i have some questions for you please assist me guys:

    1- Does the Retina really differs/matter? i used ipad3 & ipad2, i didn't really notice the WOW difference, from the reviews here and outside the site, some people say they see difference, some says no also..am confused really. can u advise which one should i go..

    2- For the ones with Retina display, i plan to pay 200$ more to reconfigure it with processor as the i7 one already installed in the non retina of option 1, do you think the processor will really matter? or same experience here..

    3- Do you think if i choose option 1, i should pay 300$ to get SSD 256 instead of the 750 GB, or what do you think? does it matter really the SSD speed to this extent?

    4- If i got the 750 HD now, can i later go to apple and ask it to install for SSD for 512, may be at that time i have some $$$.

    What i like mainly in the non-retina display one is that it has ethernet port together with DVD drive, which is not found in retina display, which will cost more 100$ to get dvd player together with ethernet adapter (i don't know why they did it)

    Sorry for the much questions :)
    Awaiting your help! :)
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Personal preference. I love my rMBP. The basic trade off is that you gain a gorgeous screen but give up the storage.

    Odds are good that you'll not see any performance difference with the i7

    Do you need more then 256GB of storage. If not then get the SSD. To save yourself money, buy it the SSD other then Apple and install it yourself. The speed difference is significant but if you need more then what the SSD offers storage wise speed is a moot point

    You're better off doing it yourself. Since I do all my upgrades myself I'm not really sure if they offer that as a service. I suspect they do but I can't be sure.

    Sounds like you're leaning towards to the non retina MBP, it does offer more expandability (ram/storage) more ports and an optical drive. If that is the case, then definitely get the cMBP (classic MBP)
  3. Akack macrumors 6502a

    Mar 5, 2011
    If you don't see a drastic difference between a retina vs non retina display then do not waste your money on buying the retina one.
    In my eyes and personal experience the retina on the iPad 3/up and the rMBP is easily discernible from its non retina versions....the retina versions have completely spoiled me.

    The regular MBP would be less than the retina and you can easily upgrade the RAM and install the SSD yourself. Defn get the SSD, your laptop will feel so much "snappier."
  4. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    You really sound like a candidate for the MacBook Air.
  5. pirlo2000 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2012
    Thanks maflynn, akack and Krazy Bill..

    I really considered your suggestion, sounds interesting...but

    1- the CPU is much less than that of MBP..... i know its fourth generation, does it perform better than its precedent on even lower clock speeds?

    2- will i also need to upgrade to i7 1.7 for better performance in this case?

    Generally am fearing also the IR issue in rMBP!
  6. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    It's about the same as its predecessor. The new MBAirs are all about extending the battery life.:

    View attachment 431735

    12 hours up time warrants at least your consideration.

    "Need" is subjective. Honestly, based on what you will be using it for I don't think so but if you're going to start customizing the Air by throwing money at Apple's pricey upgrades then the rMBP is probably your best bet. It's about $150 more compared to a semi-equivalent maxed out MBA. Not the same battery life but retina screen and of course more CPU muscle.

    I think we're past that now.
  7. pirlo2000 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2012
    thanks for the answers!

    Am reading much really about the different options after adding MBA to the list specially that i'm a newbie to MAC :)


    The only thing i like about cMBP is its expandability (noting that am not that guy of buying new laptop every year or two), so i think cMBP can give more span for RAM upgrade and SSD upgrades whenever you have $$$.

    Unfortunately the expandability is not found neither in rMBP or MBA.

    Well but the MBA has the latest Haswell and newest intel 5000 chip, so as for me it beats out the rMBP... and from the reports it seems Haswell won't be in the cMBP anymore, it seems will continue on rMBP which i believe won't have the expandability also.

    I think comparison now is between cMBP 2.9 13 & MBA 13 maxed out.

    Waiting for more opinions!
  8. 9512tacoma macrumors member

    Aug 28, 2013
    I purchased the cmbp with the 2.9ghz i7 and 750gb HD. I love it. I still use dvd drives today to rip my movies and use handbrake to convert to Apple TV mp4. I wanted a faster processor and a lot of memory for the conversion process. For me the air did not have the power to do this process as fast. I also wanted a Large harddrive to for iMovie video editing. I use my pro at home so weight and battery life were not major factors in my terms of use. I looked at retina display and it to me is very noticeable the screen is a lot better than the cmbp but lack of large harddrive, no DVD drive, and actually cost was a reason I chose the cmbp. Cmbp is upgradable so I will eventually get a 756 gb ssddrive for better speed and to increase battery life.
  9. cambookpro macrumors 603


    Feb 3, 2010
    United Kingdom
    Personally, I'd go with the Air. The SSD makes it feel very fast, and if you're not going to be doing things like encoding, video editing, 3D modelling or high end gaming etc you should be fine.

    My friend recently bought the new Air and he loves it - he got 13 hours battery out of it before it died, so Apple's numbers are pretty accurate. It also handles Photoshop very well, albeit he wasn't opening anything with hundreds of layers.

    Plus the Air is stupidly light - I felt the strain lugging my 15" cMBP and other crap I had for a few miles the other day, whereas carrying the Air is a breeze :eek:
  10. codefuns macrumors member

    Jun 10, 2011
    I suggest cMBP.
    for the retina screen, I can see the difference if I want, but with a normal eye to screen distance, I can't notice any difference when gaming, web browseing or reading. so the only good thing for me is rMBP is thinner and lighter than cMBP, but you should know that benefit comes with a more expensive price, lossing some functionality(disc, ethernet port), lossing the flexibility, it is definitely not worth for me.
  11. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    That certainly works.

    In your case, I would monitor Apple's next imminent MBP refresh to see if:
    1.) the cMBP will still exist :eek: (if not you'll still be able to get a new one somewhere)
    2.) the 13" retina can be ordered with 16GB of memory.

    I think the ability to open things up for self-upgrades is overrated these days. (Yes, there was a time when this was needed).

    In the meantime, meander into a nearby Apple Store while you wait and at least see the retina models. If they don't "wow" you then at least you can rule them out.

    While you're there... check out an iMac + iPad combo maybe? I see a lot of people that don't consider this and think it's a great marriage of the Apple ecosystem as long as your mobile needs are mostly content consumption. This can come close to your $2000 budget.

    And don't ignore the full-warranty refurbished (and discounted) models that Apple sells.
  12. pirlo2000, Sep 6, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2013

    pirlo2000 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2012
    Thanks all for your comments....

    Unfortunately monitoring Apple for me won't work.. i need to buy something before first week of October...you may ask why?!...To make it more clear am not US resident... i may come to the states by end of this month in short holiday then back home..

    From long time i need to get a new laptop and interested in MAC..but unfortunately in my home country MAC is sold at may be 500$ more than its original price in the state... which is ridiculous.. that's why i thought it would be a good idea to get a MAC when i'm in the states...

    Wish if the new haswell rMBP released before October.. also in this case i don't know if i will be able to catch it from the store or not..at least if i couldn't i believe at least the current rMBP drop in price more than 1699$, or even the cMBP may drop also in price...

    Seems for me the shipping option won't be valid, i want to do a store pickup!

    Also my thoughts is that i want to pass by a store to pick up the cMBP or rMBP or MBA from it, if i order some enhancements to the MBA for example i dunno if i will have time to catch it or not.. i pray that rMPB haswell will be available before October..

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