2016 MacBook Pro or 2015?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mbkthrowaway, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. mbkthrowaway, Feb 7, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2018

    mbkthrowaway macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2018
    #1
    I am upgrading from a 2008 15” Macbook Pro and am struggling to decide between two models with identical SSD space (512gb): A 2016 MBP ($1999) and a 2015 MBP ($2250, which is basically the upper limit for my budget). I haven’t encountered the 2016 in person, but I tested a 2017 in store alongside a 2015, and I preferred the look of the 2017, as well as the feel of the keyboard. I really don't mind the dongle issue either. So I’m leaning toward the 2016, except for the negatives I’ve heard about the 2016’s reliability (keys sticking, battery life). Any input on which way to go?
     
  2. Falhófnir macrumors 68000

    Falhófnir

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    Aug 19, 2017
    #2
    On battery life, someone may correct me on this, but I don’t believe the 15” models were affected? As far as I know it was the 13” touch bar machines that suffered on that front. The keyboard is an issue, a lot of people have been affected, a good few have posted to say they haven’t - tbh it’s a pay your money and take your chance game at this point.
     
  3. raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    Sep 11, 2016
    #3
    Is the 2016 new in box or eligible for Apple Care+? If so you might go with it since you prefer it and take the savings vs- the 2015 price and apply that to Apple Care +. You end up at the same price point but have a 3 year warranty to boot...

    My .02
     
  4. mbkthrowaway thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2018
    #4
    Hi, yes the 2016 is new from an authorized reseller and eligible for AppleCare, so that's a good point. Same with the 2015, though.
     
  5. groove-agent macrumors 6502a

    groove-agent

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    Jan 13, 2006
    #5
    My advice... don't buy the 2016/ 2017 until they have a fix for the keyboard (if ever). Even if it is under warranty you have to deal with the loss of use and the time it takes to take it to Apple. After your warranty is over, you're on the hook for a $600-$700 top case replacement for something as simple as an intermittently failing "B" key.

    Get the 2015, save some money, enjoy having actual ports. Most of all you get piece of mind knowing that you're keyboard will be reliable.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Boston
    #6
    For me, I'd not want to spend over 2k on a nearly 3 year old machine (2015). I understand its not 3 years old in usage, but my point is you're spending a lot of money and to me I'd rather get the most up todate components.
     
  7. Stygma, Feb 9, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018

    Stygma macrumors newbie

    Stygma

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    Jan 24, 2018
    #7
    I agree with raqball, 2016 but you must buy AppleCare+. I was in the same position and chose the 2015, but I am using it for a specific purpose, DJing and my controller uses normal USB and my external drive uses thunderbolt 2. I did not want to deal with dongles while DJing because it adds another point of failure when the dance floor is full.

    In your case though, I would go 2016 with Applecare+
     
  8. mbkthrowaway thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2018
    #8
    So thus far it's 3 votes to 1 for the 2016 (with applecare+).
    --- Post Merged, Feb 9, 2018 ---
    These are reasonable points as well
     
  9. raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    Sep 11, 2016
    #9
    The only point I don't agree with in that post is the comment made about saving money. The price for your 2015 is actually more $$ or the same if you purchased Apple Care + for the 2016. I view that as a wash price wise but the Apple Care + on the 2016 puts it in the lead in my opinion.

    Plus you said you prefer the KB on the 2016. I do agree though that if you go with the 2016 Apple Care + is a must have for it as replacing a faulty KB on them is insanely priced.
     
  10. groove-agent macrumors 6502a

    groove-agent

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    Jan 13, 2006
    #10
    I agree it's a little ridiculous to be spending that much money on a 3 year old machine. It kinda sucks that we're sort of stuck in the eco-system with very few options. However it really boils down to: do you want leading edge technology, or do you want reliability?

    The other question you need to ask yourself: What are you going to do once the Apple care is up? Most people say they're going to sell it before this happens. However once Apple releases a new model with a fixed keyboard (maybe March 2018 according to rumours), most informed buyers will avoid purchasing a used 2016/2017 model because of the notorious keyboard failure issues.

    I'm in the same boat - I really wanted to purchase a 2016/2017 even thought it's more expensive than it's worth (IMO) but I just can't soundly invest in this laptop with the design flaws it has.
     
  11. raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    Sep 11, 2016
    #11
    Plenty of KB failures on the 2015's as well. I had one that down the down key got stuck then promptly broke. Agree the price to repair the 2015 is probably much less but nothing is infallible..
     
  12. mbkthrowaway thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2018
    #12
    That's the point I keep coming back to in my mind. There's so much criticism out there, not just from Apple-bashers who I don't have much respect for, but from people who are Mac users about reliability issues with the keyboard and also the battery life on these 2016-17 models.
     
  13. raqball, Feb 9, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018

    raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    #13
    I am not discounting the issues people have had as they are real and troublesome but also consider Apple probably sold millions of the machines. Many are probably working issue free. Most people don't seek out a forum to post that the machine is working great. All we see online are complaints and issues and they can look plentiful but in reality they might not be as bad as it appears.

    I had a 2017 a few weeks ago and the KB failed after 3 days! I returned it and swore Apple off....... Guess what I bought again last week? Yup another 2017....

    The 2015 is still a fine machine but I don't think I could get myself, at this point, to pay that amount of $$$$ for a 3 year old machine but that's maybe just me..

    Also, I highly doubt we will see 2018 MacBook Pros anytime soon as Intel has not released the 2018 processors yet with Iris graphics. I assume Apple will wait for them so end of the year maybe for the 2018's.
     
  14. macdudesir macrumors 6502

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    Blacksburg, VA
    #14
    I am here to vote for the 16 w/ AppleCare+...The keyboard is a point of concern but I really would not want to pay that much for old technology...I am convinced that in 3 years when my AppleCare runs out that if my keyboard hasn't failed by then, its not going to. So far so good here. Keep in mind that people only come around to voice their opinion when they feel they've been wronged. There are millions of Macs with this keyboard out there that haven't had any problems, mine is one of them. If every keyboard was doomed as people here seem to think, Apple would've made a statement about it already. I find this keyboard to be a joy to type on, and mine is reliable while cold, hot, and everywhere in between (holds consistent feel).

    As for battery life, I also haven't had any issue with that. I use my computer all day every day for school, w/ parallels always running...manipulating big data in Excel...plenty of web browsing as well as taking notes, and even on my 13" wTB (which is supposedly the worst offender) the only time ive actually had my battery die, it was after 11 hours of hard use...I did not get off it between my 8am class to when it finally died at 7pm...The biggest thing is to keep the brightness down on this super bright new screen. It is beautiful at full brightness but it draws a ton of power...I usually have mine around 50%.
     
  15. mbkthrowaway thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2018
    #15
    Well, everyone’s made some really good points on both sides of this. I think I’m going to side with the majority and take a chance on the 2016 w/ AppleCare+. I think the deciding factors were the price of the 2015 — I’d be paying nearly $300 more for older technology— and also I really preferred the look and the keyboard of the 2016. Hopefully the keys on it don’t fail ☹️. I’ll keep ya’ll posted.
     
  16. jerryk macrumors 68040

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    SF Bay Area
    #16
    Yours is the first I have ever heard of one breaking.

    If the key stuck down in the 2015 you probably could likely could easily fixed it. They keys are easy to remove and you can then look down into the key mechanism and either vacuum it out, or use a q-tip to get any foreign material out.
     
  17. raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    Sep 11, 2016
    #17
    Plenty of KB and trackpad issues on the 2015's. Google it and / or check the official Apple Forums

    Mine had to be replaced by Apple as there was no saving it or self repairing it.
     
  18. Naimfan macrumors 601

    Naimfan

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    Jan 15, 2003
    #18
    Get the 2015.

    I've had several 2016s and every single one has had to have the topcase/keyboard replaced. I finally gave up and have a 2015 (which wirks perfectly) and a 2017 (replacement for the last 2016). The 2017 lasted about 4 months before the keyboard started repeating the "b" key and ignoring the spacebar about 33% of the time.

    The notion that the 2015 suffers from keyboard failures at anything near the rate of the 2016 models is not supported by any available data.
     
  19. raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    #19
    Not a single person has said the failure rate was the same.. Did you decide to make this up for some odd reason?
     
  20. mikzn, Feb 10, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018

    mikzn macrumors 6502a

    mikzn

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    Vancouver
    #20
    My vote is for the 2015 - keyboard more reliable, has magsafe, easier to upgrade SSD later
     
  21. Naimfan macrumors 601

    Naimfan

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    Jan 15, 2003
    #21
    A reading comprehension class would appear to be in order . . . because that's not what was written.

    Why do you feel the need to be disingenuous?
     
  22. raqball macrumors 68000

    raqball

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    #22
    Agree! try reading the thread (and it's not that long) next time before making snide remarks about something was never said.. LOL
     
  23. jeyf macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 20, 2009
    #23
    i own a 2016 and very sorry i got involved with all this
    get the 2015
     
  24. HBOC macrumors 68020

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    Oct 14, 2008
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    SLC
    #24
    i have a 2015 15" MBP with every option except the SSD and processor - so i have 2.5 GHZ and 512 SSD. Really happy with this machine. I bought it to replace my iMac.
     
  25. turbineseaplane macrumors 68040

    turbineseaplane

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    Mar 19, 2008
    #25
    If genuinely concerned about having the newest one possible I would personally get as good a deal as you could on a preowned 2015 and wait to see what the 2018 models bring.

    Personally I find absolutely nothing lacking about the 2015 models and other than knowing in my head that better specs are out there there's nothing about it that feels old to me at all. It does every single thing I need it to, superbly. 2015 models are really great and fully evolved versions of that run.
     

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