2017 non-touchbar vs 2016 touchbar

Jarrodbcall

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 28, 2013
208
123
Hello!

I am trying to decide between buying a used 2016 MacBook Pro with touchbar (512 GB and 2.9GHz) and a refurbished 2017 non touchbar (256; 2.3 GHz). I have looked all over for spec comparisons and am struggling to see which one has better performance. I am particularly interested in graphics performance as I think the CPU is probably sufficient in both. They have a similar warranty length and are fairly similarly priced (the touchbar one is about 100 dollars more).

I am assuming the 2017 will have better battery due to the bigger battery and newer chipset, but I am wondering if the cooling system and higher wattage on the 2016 will more than compensate speed-wise.

What are your thoughts/recommendations? Any help is appreciated!
 

Samuelsan2001

macrumors 604
Oct 24, 2013
7,694
2,121
They will be pretty much the same performance wise. The 2017 will have h.265 inbuilt decoding for 4K and a few other little goodies depending what you do, however if gpu is important to you buying a comouter with an integrated gpu only seems a poor choice.
 

Jarrodbcall

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 28, 2013
208
123
They will be pretty much the same performance wise. The 2017 will have h.265 inbuilt decoding for 4K and a few other little goodies depending what you do, however if gpu is important to you buying a comouter with an integrated gpu only seems a poor choice.
Thanks! That’s helpful information. The GPU isn’t that important—I will be happy with anything above the Intel 6100 I have used before. I really only game on old games, but I do it enough that it will be nice to have something a bit better. I am leaning toward a 2017 Model (I found a few used TB and non TB models I am looking at). I think I will end up going with whatever is the best deal and what has time left on AppleCare.
 

537635

macrumors 6502a
Mar 7, 2009
651
566
Slovenia, EU
The real question is - which external keyboard will you buy? Honestly, I wouldn't buy any of these. Not right now. Typing this on a 2016 touchbar and on my 4th replaced keyboard.

If you still decide to buy, run a graphically intensive program, wait a couple of minutes and check the keyboard for stuck keys. If any of them is sticking, do not buy, because they will fail soon. They might still fail if everything looks OK but at least you'll get a month or two of using your new device.
 

smallcoffee

macrumors 68000
Oct 15, 2014
1,600
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North America
The real question is - which external keyboard will you buy? Honestly, I wouldn't buy any of these. Not right now. Typing this on a 2016 touchbar and on my 4th replaced keyboard.

If you still decide to buy, run a graphically intensive program, wait a couple of minutes and check the keyboard for stuck keys. If any of them is sticking, do not buy, because they will fail soon. They might still fail if everything looks OK but at least you'll get a month or two of using your new device.
:rolleyes: Here we go again.

Wait wait. Let me guess. OP should buy a 2015 MacBook Pro am I right?

Anyway. I would recommend the 2017 in general. A refurb will come with a 1-year warranty and you can still buy Apple Care. The Touch Bar is an "ok to have" and TouchID is nice, but not really something to take into consideration, in my opinion.
 
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537635

macrumors 6502a
Mar 7, 2009
651
566
Slovenia, EU
No. What I am saying is that Apple currently doesn't have ANY viable options if you're in the market for a portable computer. That is if you need the computer for... you know, doing something. If it is just for scrolling Facebook in Starbucks, then go ahead.

2017 rMBP. With Apple Care. Great. As the keyboard fails along the way you're looking in a week or so without the computer. And then again. And again. Until the warranty runs out after three years and then the resale value of the computer is ZERO. After this fiasco nobody will buy used Macbooks from 2016 and 2017.

You could roll the dice if Apple will replace all affected computers with new incoming models, but I do not believe this is going to happen.
 

moostrax

macrumors newbie
Jun 4, 2018
8
4
Florida
:rolleyes: Here we go again.

Wait wait. Let me guess. OP should buy a 2015 MacBook Pro am I right?

Anyway. I would recommend the 2017 in general. A refurb will come with a 1-year warranty and you can still buy Apple Care. The Touch Bar is an "ok to have" and TouchID is nice, but not really something to take into consideration, in my opinion.
I agree with this sentiment. I have a 2016 13" with TB that I bought used with AppleCare. I actually like the keyboard, given, mine hasn't failed. I understand that some people have had constant keyboard problems, but that hasn't been my experience. I also really appreciate touchID, and the TB has added extra convenience to my productivity/consumption. Either way you'll have a great machine, OP!
 

Jarrodbcall

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 28, 2013
208
123
I agree with this sentiment. I have a 2016 13" with TB that I bought used with AppleCare. I actually like the keyboard, given, mine hasn't failed. I understand that some people have had constant keyboard problems, but that hasn't been my experience. I also really appreciate touchID, and the TB has added extra convenience to my productivity/consumption. Either way you'll have a great machine, OP!
Thanks! I found a GREAT used deal for 1300 for a used TB 2017 with extended AppleCare, but I had to leave town right when they could meet up and they ended up selling it . Back to the drawing board! Thankfully I am not heading back to school till September so I have plenty of time to look Arovista be.
 
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smallcoffee

macrumors 68000
Oct 15, 2014
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No. What I am saying is that Apple currently doesn't have ANY viable options if you're in the market for a portable computer. That is if you need the computer for... you know, doing something. If it is just for scrolling Facebook in Starbucks, then go ahead.
I use a 2015 and 2016 for research, and our new software engineers all get 2017 MBPs. They seem to have no problem building products you probably use every day with them.

2017 rMBP. With Apple Care. Great. As the keyboard fails along the way you're looking in a week or so without the computer. And then again. And again. Until the warranty runs out after three years and then the resale value of the computer is ZERO. After this fiasco nobody will buy used Macbooks from 2016 and 2017.

You could roll the dice if Apple will replace all affected computers with new incoming models, but I do not believe this is going to happen.
Hyperbole and nonsense.
 

moostrax

macrumors newbie
Jun 4, 2018
8
4
Florida
Thanks! I found a GREAT used deal for 1300 for a used TB 2017 with extended AppleCare, but I had to leave town right when they could meet up and they ended up selling it . Back to the drawing board! Thankfully I am not heading back to school till September so I have plenty of time to look Arovista be.
Ah, that is a great deal! Surely something else will come along. Best of luck in your search!
 

Jarrodbcall

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 28, 2013
208
123
Ah, that is a great deal! Surely something else will come along. Best of luck in your search!
Thanks! I also found a refurbished nTB for 1000 (no AppleCare) that I will probably spring for. I don’t really need the touchbar (especially after no mention yesterday) and the year AppleCare should be good for now. I can always purchase the additional plan.
 
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Jarrodbcall

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 28, 2013
208
123
Plot twist! I found a 2016 with warranty through 2020 for the same price as the 2017 refurb, so I am back to the original question, haha. The warranty might lean me the way of the older TB just because it gives me a few extra years covered until the keyboard situation gets figured out.
 

moostrax

macrumors newbie
Jun 4, 2018
8
4
Florida
Plot twist! I found a 2016 with warranty through 2020 for the same price as the 2017 refurb, so I am back to the original question, haha. The warranty might lean me the way of the older TB just because it gives me a few extra years covered until the keyboard situation gets figured out.
Nice find-- I'm still of the opinion to trade the marginal increase in graphics capabilities for this still-great machine with warranty. Of course, I'm a bit biased cause that sounds a lot like my setup ;)

ALSO, a lot of reviews say that the battery performance is largely the same on '16 versus '17!
 

Jarrodbcall

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 28, 2013
208
123
Nice find-- I'm still of the opinion to trade the marginal increase in graphics capabilities for this still-great machine with warranty. Of course, I'm a bit biased cause that sounds a lot like my setup ;)

ALSO, a lot of reviews say that the battery performance is largely the same on '16 versus '17!
That’s what I ended up doing! The graphics benchmarks between the two were remarkably similar (most actually swung toward the older 550 over the newer 640), and I figured the extra cooling might actually help the 2016 more. It was a tiny bit more, but under warranty and that is a great piece of mind. Thanks everyone!
 
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