Advice needed on a new purchase

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by AllenAmini, Mar 25, 2017.

  1. AllenAmini macrumors newbie

    AllenAmini

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2017
    #1
    I'm an elementary school teacher who's used Macs for some 30 years. I have a late 2012 MacBook Pro which is showing its age. In looking at Apple's new offerings and trying them at the store they fail in several ways: 1. Cost is way beyond my budget. 2. MagSafe missing is a big deal when you have your computer plugged in with 25+ third graders. 3. The keyboard was just not to my liking and the lack of ports that I need to use without dongles just doesn't make sense. I've looked at MacBook Air, but again, I want a laptop with modern up to date components and I'd like a Retina display. I'm looking for advice and suggestions. I looked at the Microsoft Surface Book and it looked very tempting, but I have no idea how Windows 10 works.
     
  2. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #2
    I moved to Microsoft's Surface Book on the launch of the 2016 MacBook Pro, nor have I looked back. I do have solid experience of Windows, so the transition was not an issue for me. The current MacBook Pro`s simply raise too many issues for my usage (engineering) with this gentleman very much summarising many of the problems;



    Having owned & used a Retina MacBook for over 22 months, I can categorically state that even with Apple's own dongles issues can and do arise. Ultimately one must accept that there will be a trade off's for a thinner chassis, with a reliance on dongles, adapters etc. however there's a limit where unreliability & inconvenience override the saving of just an 1/8" in the thickness of the notebook...

    From my experience of close to two years of using the Retina MacBook in a professional role; a USB C only notebook is only suitable as a secondary or tertiary system. I have yet to visit any facility globally where "anything" could take advantage of USB C natively without the need for dongles.

    After due thought and consideration, the 2016 MacBook Pro is simply designed for the well healed consumer, not the professional on the go. The depreciation of usable ports and inclusion of now a 3rd point of user focus (noob-bar) are proof enough, hence my switch to Microsoft's Surface Book for the 13" class of notebook. 15" will undoubtedly go the same way, as stated in the YouTube clip once you move to a platform your more likely to gravitate to solutions that work, than one's that don't...

    If you look here you will find many comments on the Surface Book and others from Mac users; Alternatives to Mac Hardware

    Q-6
     
  3. SteveJUAE macrumors 68000

    SteveJUAE

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    Land of Smiles
    #3
    I do sympathise with your dilemma being a long term Mac user and I am sure you are one of many that feel alienated by Apple recent changes, however

    The Surface Book is a fine laptop hardware wise and equal to any Mac in build quality etc as are a few other W10 laptops in this category

    May be we can advise you better on W10 if we understood your usage a bit better and you could always bootcamp your current MBP to start the learning curve of the new OS before jumping in with your wallet.

    As a teacher I am sure you would enjoy the learning process and maybe gain some new skills in the process :)
     
  4. Mr. Dee macrumors 65816

    Mr. Dee

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    Jamaica
    #4
    Some users have reported issues with the Surface Book due to its 2 in 1 design. Firmware updates have resolved most of the issues with it, but there are still reports of problems with it in that respect. I personally am looking at the Surface Book as my next PC if any of my current devices fail. Right now, I am happy with what I have.

    What I would recommend you do though is wait a bit more, because rumor is Microsoft will release a conventional Surface Book laptop. This is said to not be a 2 in 1, which might have its benefits of not being as complex. It might also be more affordable and familiar to use. The touch pad gestures in the latest Windows 10 Creators Update are somewhat similar to what you find on a Mac and you can customize them too.

    If you can up to October or November then make a solid comparison between Surface Book 2, rev 2. MacBook Pro (which might be cheaper), then you might benefit even more. If you can't then the still reliable 2015 MacBook Pro is still a solid buy.
     
  5. darksithpro macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2016
    #5
    That, right there stopped me from recommending a Windows Laptop. If you've never used Windows and always have been accustomed to Mac OS, chances are you'll hate the Windows experience and return a Windows Laptop, no matter how well it performs. I would suggest a used 2015 model. I think there's a marketplace forum here somewhere, where I bet someone is selling a good condition 2015 model with all the ports you need. Good luck.
     
  6. lasniko macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    #6
    I am not sure but I think the cost of Surface Book is almost the same as the MacBook Pro.
     
  7. Queen6, Mar 25, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2017

    Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #7
    Not to counter, rather more first hand experience; I bought my Surface Book later in the cycle (November 2016) all the terrible scenarios I had read online have never occurred or realised; Detach works perfectly, my ultra wide LG "just works", no "Hot Bags" doesn't consume battery while sleeping, wakes from sleep/hibernation with no issue, just no problems at all. To date my Surface Book has proved to be the most stable computer I have ever owned, it has literally never crashed or presented any issue. so far the experience is "everything works as promised" by Microsoft, both in isolation and with peripherals. FWIW over 2 decades with Apple & the Mac, never been a hater of Windows, however Microsoft certainly have my attention and now custom these days.

    So what I would say is let the dust settle as little on any new product and allow the manufacturer to work out the kinks, as seems to be the trend that on the initial release some issues are present, regardless of point of origin.

    Q-6
    --- Post Merged, Mar 25, 2017 ---
    Locally I priced a 256Gb i7 non Touch Bar 13" MBP, it was $63 USD cheaper than my i7, 256Gb, dGPU Surface Book. Arguably the Surface Book represents better value being a 2 in1 with full Pen & Touch support and dGPU. Had I opted for the 13" MBP with Touch Bar & i7 pricing would have been greater than the Surface Book.

    Personally I am hoping that Microsoft launches a 15" Surface Notebook, as I have a suspicion that it may well solve my problems, given Apple is on autopilot, and no longer providing usable solutions for my needs.

    n.b. This assumes one takes advantage of the 2 in 1 features.

    Q-6
     
  8. Altis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2013
    #8
    Do you have a hard drive or SSD in your 2012? How much RAM?

    Your computer might just need an SSD and a fresh install of the OS to be as good as new.

    Do you use any Mac-specific software?

    If not, it isn't too much trouble to use either Mac or Windows. They're just platforms upon which you use software.

    It's difficult to make a specific recommendation without knowing more details on usage and connectivity/portability requirements, but some options worth considering:

    - freshen up your 2012
    - Used / refurb 2015 MBP
    - Windows laptop
    - 2-in-1 such as Surface Pro (not book)

    I really like the recently updated Samsung Note 9, only 1.8 lbs (13") and very solid spec sheet for decent price.
     
  9. chipchen macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2002
    #9
    Now is crappy time to purchase a new Mac. It's all either outdated technology or way too expensive with the new 2016 MacBook Pro (and price increases). That being the case, it's going to be awhile until prices drop to more reasonable prices.

    SO... my recommendation is for you to upgrade your 2012 MacBook Pro. Put 16GB RAM into it, and upgrade to an SSD. It will feel like a new computer and give you another two years (one at least) or so. You're looking at about $250 for all that (Assuming a 512GB SSD).

    16GB RAM
    https://www.amazon.com/Crucial-DDR3L-1600-SODIMM-Memory-CT2K8G3S160BM/

    525GB SSD
    https://www.amazon.com/Crucial-MX300-525GB-Internal-Solid/dp/B01IAGSD68/
     
  10. AllenAmini thread starter macrumors newbie

    AllenAmini

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2017
    #10
    It has the original 4 GB of RAM and. 500 GB standard hard drive. I'm sure the upgrades will make a difference, but I just feel/prefer to invest in a new computer. I stress again, while some have said the transition to Windows 10 won't be hard, I just didn't like the user interface with all the tiles and the navigation was really confusing. I guess I'm hoping there will be an updated machine that suits my needs.






     
  11. Queen6, Mar 26, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2017

    Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #11
    IMHO you will be best served by sourcing a 2015 MacBook Pro, as it will work for you and likely meet, if not exceed your expectations. I seriously doubt that Apple will listen to it`'s Mac customers as IOS devices are now Apple`s focus. To be brutally honest you will be better to switch platforms sooner rather than later, as Apple's path with the Mac is very clear, lifestyle devices, not professional tools...

    Q-6
     
  12. idark77 macrumors 6502

    idark77

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  13. lcseds macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 20, 2006
    Location:
    NC, USA
    #13
    Windows 10 is not about tiles if you don't want. Boot to a "regular" desktop with your favorite apps pinned to the task bar at the bottom similar to Mac. They are nearly the same in real world usage and both can be easily customized. Everything that made Mac the preferred OS over Windows has faded over the past few years.
     
  14. MadDane macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2015
    #14
    I have to say I agree with this statement. I got my first Mac in 2006 so the last version of Windows I used was XP. I am now using Windows 7 at work and 10 at home (in addition to OS X) and at really isn't too bad. You need to invest a bit of time in getting to know the OS and setting it up the way you want it, but after that the experience is quite similar in my opinion.
     
  15. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Boston
    #15
    I have a Surface Book and I can state that its been rock solid, no issues. Yes early on in the product release MS had some significant issues, but they've all been resolved. I'm very happy with the SB, I'm on it right now as I'm travelling.
     
  16. Mr. Dee macrumors 65816

    Mr. Dee

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    Dec 4, 2003
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    Jamaica
    #16
    I think you need to be more practical about personal taste versus, does it do what its supposed to do.

    I am a relatively new Mac user, having bought my first official Mac in 2015. I can say without a doubt, Windows 10 is a powerful, flexible operating system. The tiles are basically live icons, you can choose to have them display information or not or resize them. If you prefer Apple's more traditional photo realistic icons, there is not much you can do. What I like about tiles in Windows 10 is the "At a Glance" nature of them. If I just want to see the 5 day forecast, I can see that without opening up the app. Also, you can hide the tiles on the screen when you click Start or just have your favorite apps pinned to the Taskbar.

    Office on the Mac has come a long way, but its still a bit behind the Windows version and is better integrated with Microsoft services.

    What I would suggest you do is setup a boot camp partition or virtual machine, install the 90 day Windows 10 trial and Office 365 180 day trial then familiarize your self with both.

    I agree with a previous commenter, maybe all you really need is to max out the RAM, install a SSD and a fresh install and you might be surprised.
     
  17. jerryk macrumors 68030

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    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #17
    I think you are confusing the Windows 10 interface with Windows 8 interface. Windows 8 had a lot of tiles. Windows 10 has options to use the tiles, but that is not the default.

    There is also a taskbar at the bottom, similar to the dock on a Mac. This is where I keep the apps I use frequently, just like on my mac. The less frequently used apps are available from the windows menu, which is similar to the Application folder, but much much easier to navigate.
     
  18. Sanpete macrumors 68020

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    Nov 17, 2016
    Location:
    Utah
    #18
    Your case doesn't seem complicated, OP. Everything you say indicates you should get a 2015. It's not as nice as the 2016 in many respects, but it has the things *you* want without the things you don't want, and it's cheaper. Is there anything more to it?
    --- Post Merged, Mar 26, 2017 ---
    Very funny. The only thing proved by your remarks is that you have reached your conclusion based on completely ignoring all views not like your own. Anyone who reads the comments here or elsewhere with any part of an open mind knows that many pros love the new MBPs and rely on them for their professional work. Obviously the more powerful and flexible ports work fine for them.

    The unhinged side of haters is illustrated by the insult "noob bar" that is contrary to the video you post that you supposedly agree with. The non-noob who made the video loves the touch bar. Many pros love it and find it increases their productivity.
     
  19. Altis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2013
    #19
    That's the reason your 2012 now runs poorly -- OSX/MacOS now pretty much assumes an SSD, meaning that a HDD runs very slow now.

    For like 5-10% of the cost of a 2015, you could put in an SSD and you'll have a machine that's just as quick for 90% of what people do. That will solve the performance part (even without upgrading the RAM) for a couple of years.

    If, however, you really just want a retina display, then get a 2015 model so you have the normal keyboard and ports, and save money.
     
  20. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #20
    The Surface Book is $200 more expensive than the comparable base 13" MBP. Why are even you looking at it if already the MBP is too expensive for you?
     
  21. Altis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2013
    #21
    Maybe I'm not watching the right reviewers, but everything I've seen on the TouchBar ranges from total gimmick to wait and see.

    It's a pretty slow and cumbersome way to input compared with mouse/trackpad/keyboard, but I can see it having a few use cases eventually.

    It certainly isn't something I'd pay money for.
     
  22. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #22
    First of all, being a professional on the go does not necessarily mean that you need to connect to every single port you see (of course your professional needs might be different). For most users, this is occasional ethernet (which requires an adapter with Macs since 2012) or beamer (which again requires an adapter since basically forever, unless you were 100% sure that the location you visit has HDMI), so not much sense here. And frankly, already the fact that the 13" Surface Book is quite large and fat laptop for a 13" means that you can take a 13" or even 15" MBP instead with all adapters you might need and still have more room in your bag.
     
  23. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #23
    Sorry you are wrong and need look at global pricing, equally I agree if the Surface Book is too expensive, so is the new MBP. My own i7 256 SSD with dGPU Surface Book was just $63 more expensive than Apple's 13" non Touch Bar MBP with i7 CPU - arguably a feature rich 2 in 1, full Pen & Touch support, dGPU in a 13" class notebook, superlative runtime on battery, best $63 I've spent in many a year :)

    Q-6
     
  24. AllenAmini thread starter macrumors newbie

    AllenAmini

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    Mar 25, 2017
    #24
    The base model I saw at Best Buy was priced at $1,299.
     
  25. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #25
    I can only speak from my own experience, Apple' s current solution serves the consumer, 80% of the time dongles & adaptors work as advertised. The issue is the 20% where you are stranded 100% thx to Apple. As a someone who actually uses their Mac's on a professional environment it's simply embarrassing when this "Premium Product" is incapable of connecting to something as simple as a projector, naturally it's the manufacture of the projector fault not Apple's :rolleyes:

    It's a joke and a bad one, professionals on the go; we need compatibility we need usability, we need functionality. Your slating the Surface Book as it has a larger profile, equally it works and can connect without issue, yet the Apple's hapless solutions may or may not work, as I have first hand experience of with the 2015 rMBP. Sorry I expect more, nor will I settle for less...


    Q-6
     

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