2015 or 2016 MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by waveydavey63, Apr 13, 2017.

  1. waveydavey63 macrumors newbie

    Apr 13, 2017
    First, apologies if this has already been answered, but I couldn't find a post that exactly matched my question, which is:

    Is there any value in buying the 2016 MBP over the 2015 model?

    I need to replace my current Macbook urgently, and my first thought was the 2016 13", with or without the touchbar. But the reviews aren't too encouraging, and I'm struggling to find a reason not to get the 2015 model. Obviously, the price of the newer model is an issue - more because I resent being ripped off by Apple than anything else - but I wondered if the 2015 model is flat-out better. I should say that I regard the OLED touch bar as a silly gimmick - or does it have a utility that I don't appreciate? Also, any other compelling reasons to get the newer model?

    I'll be using it mainly for writing and general Office, with some work in Photoshop and Lightroom. No gaming!

    thanks in advance

  2. Sanpete, Apr 13, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2017

    Sanpete macrumors 68020

    Nov 17, 2016
    The new MBP 13" is clearly better than the 2015 model in:

    -- Screen
    -- SSD speed
    -- GPU
    -- External monitor support
    -- Heat
    -- Quietude
    -- Speakers
    -- Touch ID
    -- Size/weight

    It's also partly better in regard to:

    -- Battery life (nTB is better for light to moderate use, TB is worse)


    -- Touch bar (some prefer the old function keys)
    -- Ports (the new machine has by far the more powerful and flexible ports, but the 2015 has by far the more convenient ones for most people not yet living in the future)
    -- Keyboard and trackpad (the new ones get mixed reviews compared to the old)

    The one area in which the 2015 model has a clear, unmixed advantage is:

    -- Replaceable/upgradable SSD (and if the motherboard fails, you won't need Apple's help to recover your data)
  3. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Well, the 2016 model is a better computer (in basically every single aspect) but the 2015 one is cheaper and has old ports if that matters for you. Again, there are several dozens of threads talking about this and I certainly don't want to get into another round of bickering ;)

    P.S. As to the touch bar, its nice to have. Not more not less . It does make some things more convenient (e.g color selection) and doesn't really have any noteworthy drawbacks (in my experience at least). Of course, if you are one of those oddballs who really need their function keys, you are going to hate it.
  4. tshrimp, Apr 13, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2017

    tshrimp macrumors 6502


    Mar 30, 2012
    Here is a decent comparison:

    Some things to note.

    1. 2016 MPB is $1299 at BB, so you are not paying crazy high $1500. I actually got mine for $1249.
    2. Size. If portability is important then the new MBP is the way to go. Very small, but same size screen.
    3. Larger track pad is nice.
    4. Latest Thunderbolt in 2016 version, but no other connections, so you may have to spend about $50 in dongles compared to the 2015.
    5 There is a keyboard difference. I didn't like the 2016 keyboard at first, but now I am not sure I would want to go back.
    6. I could be wrong, but I think the 2015 has a plastic hinge vs aluminum?
    7. Sound. The 2016 MBP actually has nice speakers. Sounds was very surprising.
    8. I believe the GPU is much better in the 2016.

    Just a few things to note. Good luck on your choice.

    Edit: Forgot to mention. The 2016 has a faster SSD.
  5. waveydavey63 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 13, 2017
    Thanks to all for your comments - I had no idea about the replaceable SSD in the 2016 model.
    But I had to laugh/cry at the 'bargain' prices you Americans are paying - here in the U.K. Apple's post-Brexit pricing is eye-watering!
  6. Queen6 macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2008
    Putting out the fire with gasoline...
    Something our stateside members miss, Apple is literally screwing us price wise across much of the globe, with only US based retailers offering any reasonable discounts. For me the pricing is academic, the value however is entirely another matter...

  7. Sanpete macrumors 68020

    Nov 17, 2016
    *nonreplaceable--it's the 2015 SSD that can be replaced.
  8. tshrimp macrumors 6502


    Mar 30, 2012
    Could some of the price difference be the forced 2 year warranty from some countries, and also import/export taxes? Mosts costs generally trickle down to the consumer. After all we need to help Apple keep those margins up, so we can continue to pay double for last years tech :). I am such a sucker, and keep coming back for more.
  9. Queen6 macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2008
    Putting out the fire with gasoline...
    Local taxes absolutely, warranty/legislation I am unsure of. Certainly my last notebook purchase came with a no quibble two year worldwide warranty, hopefully I will have no need to call on it, equally good to see the provider standing by their product with tangible actions. I am rather more thinking generally than singularly, having been fortunate to have bought discounted Mac's in the US myself. That said a reduced price point likely makes the 2016 MBP far more palatable versus full cost, which IMHO is now just too much.

    My own midrange i7 Surface Book with dGPU was just $63 USD more expensive than the base non Touch Bar with i7 processor. Apple's really stretching it, given the added value of full Pen & Touch support, well executed 2 in 1 and the dGPU. Of course if you want or depend on OS X the options are extremely limited to say the least. Sadly Apple is now all too aware hence the state of the Mac today...

    For me as my systems are employed professionally, so cost is not a driving factor, more the value to me as the end user. The more the system offers, the more I can lever, the more I capitalise on it, no more complex than this :)

  10. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Either model will easily fit your needs, so it boils down to budget, and what you get for your money.

    If it were me, I'd opt for the 2015 model, as its a better value for my money.
  11. sunapple macrumors 65816


    Jul 16, 2013
    The Netherlands
    I'd be interested to see what options you have and what the prices actually are. Apple still sells the 2015 model new, but choosing the 256GB SSD actually bumps up the price to that of the 2016 non-Touch Bar model.

    So maybe somewhere in the UK they sell those 2015 models at a discount which would probably make them more attractive, but if the 2016 model comes close in price I'd choose that one (differences have already been pointed out, but they're basically better on every aspect).

    You can get the performance you need from both machines, that's for sure.
  12. jackoatmon macrumors 6502a


    Sep 15, 2011
    the new machines are a billion times better in every way.

    don't be fooled by griping online.
  13. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009

    First, disregard comments such as "the new machines are a billion times better in every way".
    They're not.

    Have you visited a store that sells both older and newer models, and tried them both?
    If not, I recommend that you do -- if it's possible.

    Advantages of the 2015:
    - cheaper
    - all the legacy ports (may or may not be important to you)
    - different keyboard
    - traditionally-sized touchpad
    - base model has a 2.7ghz CPU (v. 2.0ghz on 2016 base)

    Advantages of the 2016:
    - slightly nicer display
    - larger touchpad

    I made a similar decision a few months' back.
    I preferred having legacy ports, and I liked the older keyboard better. The oversized touchpad on the new ones kind of put me off. The touchbar was of no particular use to me.

    Either one will be a fine Mac for years to come.
    It's really a personal decision, based on one's needs...
  14. waveydavey63 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 13, 2017
    --- Post Merged, Apr 14, 2017 ---
    Thanks - bought the 2016. The keyboard is far nicer than I'd expected, the colour gamut is really impressive too.
    A Heads Up to UK Mac-heads. John Lewis are currently offering a 3 year warranty for free - ends May 4. And no, I don't work for John Lewis!

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