2015 or 2017 15" MacBook Pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by GoDziLLa., Oct 12, 2017.

  1. GoDziLLa. macrumors newbie


    Sep 16, 2017
    I had asked earlier about what MacBook Pro to get, the current ones that is. However, after exploring this section of the forum, I'm concerned about the issues the latest MacBook Pros are having whether it is the touch bar/battery problems, variety of keyboard problems, trackpad issues, etc. I am debating whether to get the 2015 15" MacBook Pro or the 2017 version. I just need persuasion or somebody to sell me on one of these. I'll make the final decision, personally, of course.

    My uses aren't intensive unless 4K video/Photo work count. Mostly my uses are web browsing, Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, Youtube/Netflix/Amazon Video, playing music (via bluetooth to speaker system) and possibly blogging. I currently have a mid-2010 15" MacBook Pro and have enjoyed it very much and it has aged well.

    So, you can see I like the screen estate, the laptop will mostly move from couch to desk, so not much portability unless visiting family/friends. I can deal with the change in ports, use dongles but would miss mag safe but I'm assuming that's not a deal breaker. I played with a touch bar MacBook Pro in the store but with limited time, it didn't feel like much. TouchID seems like it would useful. Finances will not be an issue.

    I can't really think of anything else so just ask away if I forgot any important factors.
  2. Naimfan Suspended


    Jan 15, 2003
    A personal decision.

    The 2017 will be slightly faster and has indisputably better graphics capabilities; though the base 2017 15" vs. the 2015 15" with the AMD 370 is not dramatically different.

    They keyboards on the 2017 models *appear* to be slightly improved in terms of feel and reliability over the 2016 models, although the trackpad is still (to me) absurdly oversized, which leads to cursor jumps, unintentional clicks, and so on. I have a 2016 15" that has had the keyboard cleaned once and soon to be replaced twice; this despite the Apple representative saying the replacement keyboard was a 2017 version. The touchbar is frippery.

    The 2015 is slightly larger and heavier; though I can't tell the difference in my backpack. The ports are easier to use at the moment, as the volume of USB-C devices is still a tiny fraction of USB devices in use. While I have no doubt USB-C will grow in popularity, it seems unlikely that it will displace USB-A ports before you'll need/want a new laptop. Doing away with Magsafe was, in my view, a significant mistake. The keyboard and trackpad of the 2015 models seem to be just right in terms of feel and size; this of course will vary from person to person.

    After all that, I'd suggest you get a 2017 and live with it for a couple of weeks, and if you encounter any problems with it or simply don't like the keyboard/trackpad to return it in favor of a 2015.
  3. PBG4 Dude macrumors 68030

    PBG4 Dude

    Jul 6, 2007
    I have the 2017 15” 2,799 MBP. Got it a couple days after they were announced. Brought it on vacation shortly thereafter and used it to manage the >2K pictures I took. Editing in Photos was quick and painless. The touchbar made it easy to apply filters and mark pictures as favorites.

    I have not had any keyboard issues so far, though I’ve read about it plenty here. Took a little bit of time to adjust to the new keyboard, but for me that’s due to the flatness of the keys rather than the short travel. It’s hard to feel where one key ends and the next begins sometimes. Still, it works well, most of my typing is in Xcode, so keyboard issues like double-key entry wouldn’t be masked by autocorrect.

    My MBP gets about 7-8 hours on battery. I believe 10 hours is what is advertised. I’m using Xcode, device simulator, and, amazingly enough, the Kindle app, which all draw heavier amounts of energy than Numbers or Pages would. Also using Safari too.

    I actually had to install gfxcardstatus (from gfx.io) because the Kindle app was forcing dGPU usage which was killing battery life. Now I can force iGPU and save battery.

    I set up how I charge differently due to lack of MagSafe. I would never stretch the cord like I do on my older laptops. I charge it where it lives, then will use it unplugged because I can get 7+ hours before I have to worry about recharging. I charge it like I would an iPad. I wouldn’t stretch a lightning cable across the floor either.

    The ports thing. I bought the Apple C to HDMI / USB-A adapter. Could probably live with this being my only required single, but I did buy a new cable for my external HDD so I wouldn’t have to deal with dongles for that. I had to buy HDMI adapters for my previous laptops so I didn’t find this to be an issue.

    I like the fact that any port can be used for anything. Need to run your power in from the right and video from the left? No problem. The USB-C / TB3 port can become any port you need, with the appropriate cable. Power, USB, Thunderbolt, FireWire, and HDMI/VGA are all possible from every port.

    The speakers are amazingly good in this laptop. I don’t know what kind of Bluetooth sound system you’re using, but you will be surprised at the quality of sound coming out of this laptop.

    That’s all I can think of for now.
  4. TonyK macrumors 65816


    May 24, 2009
    Back in June when I was deciding what to replace an aging MP with, my options were the 2015 (new in box from B&H) or a 2016 (from nearly anywhere).

    At that time the USB-C docks were announced and ship dates were slipping worse than cars on ice on steep hills in winter. With the investment of external drives, scanner, etc, my decision led me to a 2015 15" with a 1TB SSD and 16GB of RAM.

    The touch bar only played a small part of my decision. The keyboard between the 2 played a larger role.

    Given your uses it is a judgement call really. With docks now shipping for USB-C that can use the other devices, it would make sense to strongly consider the 2017 over the 2015.
  5. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    OP wrote:
    "I am debating whether to get the 2015 15" MacBook Pro or the 2017 version. I just need persuasion or somebody to sell me on one of these. I'll make the final decision, personally, of course."

    Be aware that you can still buy the 2015 design "new" from Apple. You DO NOT see this displayed on Apple's MacBook Pro page. You have to click "buy", then scroll towards the bottom of THAT page, and... there it is.

    Also, the 2015 15" models (to my knowledge) don't have a "discrete" GPU. That may "sound bad", but Apple doesn't have a great reputation with discrete GPU's (vis-a-vis integrated GPU's). Hence, "RadeonGate", etc.).

    You should try to get to an Apple Store (or some other store that sells Macs) and try both the 2015's and the 2017's "side-by-side".

    I did this with the 2015 vs. 2016 13" MacBook Pro -- and ended up buying the 2015 design. It's been flawless, runs great, no problems...
  6. Mr. Dee macrumors 68000

    Mr. Dee

    Dec 4, 2003
    If and when I do decide to upgrade from my not anytime soon Early 2015 13 in MBP, I want to go 15 inch for the larger screen. Its just that, I hope by that time, Apple provides a integrated graphics model, I don't want a discrete GPU, partly because I don't need it and as others have said, the failure rate is high with them. Not just on Macs, but Windows laptops too. Hopefully a price drop would accompany this option, with maybe a standard set of physical function keys in addition to Touch ID and 512 GB default storage.
  7. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    Buy both. If either give you any grief, trash the Apple campus in true Tokusatsu style.

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6 October 12, 2017