Alternatives to MacBook Pro (15 inch)

Teague

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 24, 2016
24
6
I've been a huge fan of Apple for years and own almost every device made by them. I have a 2010 MBP whose hard drive and battery is failing.

I bought a refurbished MPB (mid 2015) which had major cursor issues. I went through all the steps but it didn't fix it so I returned it for the same model and had the same issue.

I'm done with Apple for many of the same reasons I've seen listed here on this site. I'm not impressed with the rumored/leaked updates and refuse to spend a bunch of money for an outdated machine.

I haven't used a PC since the 90's. I hated them back then. I feel like I'm in this bind of being done with Apple (reluctantly so) but wanting something that will last longer than 4 years. I don't believe the new line up will be build to be as durable as the older MPB's. Thinner and lighter doesn't necessarily translate into solid, long lasting machines.

I thought I'd ask here what are good alternatives to the 15 inch MPB?

I'm a photographer, do music, and write.
 

keysofanxiety

macrumors G3
Nov 23, 2011
9,536
25,262
Good alternative? Well that depends on what you feel is important. Other manufacturers will always have a trade off. Build quality, hardware specs, weight, battery life, thickness, ports, driver support, manufacturer's support/customer service, leadtime on repairs, availability on parts — add one and you'll take away one of the others. It's always the case.

So what's important to you? What are you looking for?

A lot of people here frequently recommend the DELL XPS, so I'd look at that. What I'd personally recommend is holding off and seeing what Thursday's update will bring. Then you can see if it's worth buying, or if you want to dip your toe into the wonderful world of Windows.

Alternatively, replace the battery in your Mac and fit a cheap SSD. It'll be better than new and should boast a solid few more years out of it.
 

magbarn

macrumors 68020
Oct 25, 2008
2,353
1,438
Even the vaunted XPS 15's trackpad is still inferior compared to my 4 year old rMBP 15. The borderless 4K screen is awesome and is superior to the rMBP 15 screen. If you can wait for awhile as the XPS 15 is also due for a kaby lake refresh along with a GTX 1050 upgrade should be quicker than the m460 that Apple is rumored to put in the 2016 rMBP 15.
 

keysofanxiety

macrumors G3
Nov 23, 2011
9,536
25,262
Even the vaunted XPS 15's trackpad is still inferior compared to my 4 year old rMBP 15.
This. Non-Apple trackpads suck. Hard.

The XPS is one of the best, oddly enough, in that it actually works consistently — granted, if you can get over the fact that it leaves lots of fingerprints and is almost permanently/irreparably muddied after a month's use. I'd rather take an aesthetic hit than have to use a Lenovo trackpad, though.
 

Teague

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 24, 2016
24
6
Good trackpads are important since one of the things I do is write/edit. It seems there are trackpad issues with the mid 2015 MPB. I saw a 10 page thread on the issue when doing research.

I don't mind fingerprints and cleaning but if it's permanent?

Even the vaunted XPS 15's trackpad is still inferior compared to my 4 year old rMBP 15. The borderless 4K screen is awesome and is superior to the rMBP 15 screen. If you can wait for awhile as the XPS 15 is also due for a kaby lake refresh along with a GTX 1050 upgrade should be quicker than the m460 that Apple is rumored to put in the 2016 rMBP 15.
What do you notice with the trackpad?

Good alternative? Well that depends on what you feel is important. Other manufacturers will always have a trade off. Build quality, hardware specs, weight, battery life, thickness, ports, driver support, manufacturer's support/customer service, leadtime on repairs, availability on parts — add one and you'll take away one of the others. It's always the case.

So what's important to you? What are you looking for?

A lot of people here frequently recommend the DELL XPS, so I'd look at that. What I'd personally recommend is holding off and seeing what Thursday's update will bring. Then you can see if it's worth buying, or if you want to dip your toe into the wonderful world of Windows.

Alternatively, replace the battery in your Mac and fit a cheap SSD. It'll be better than new and should boast a solid few more years out of it.
Hopefully my MPB will hold up. If not I'll have to go with PC. I just don't see Apple committing to well built, long lasting machines anymore. I'm not impressed with the switch to more gimmicky type features (OLED bar?).

What's important to me are build quality, long lasting (is that even possible anymore?), hardware specs, ports, customer service, driver support (if switching to pc), graphics for movie/photo editing.

I agree about add one feature and take away another. It's why I used to be such an Apple fan. It didn't used to be like this with Apple at least.
 

Uguubot

macrumors member
Dec 16, 2010
97
5
Minnesota
If this years rMBP isn't impressive to me, I will have a hard time deciding if I want to continue learning iOS development. I'm loving Xcode and Swift is a nice change of pace from my usual C# and Java programming. But I think it's pitiful to have a $2000 computer with an iGPU. I might get myself a Razer Blade (and cover the hideous logo) and try and figure out Android development (with a vastly more powerful computer in a subjectively better looking shell).
 

magbarn

macrumors 68020
Oct 25, 2008
2,353
1,438
Good trackpads are important since one of the things I do is write/edit. It seems there are trackpad issues with the mid 2015 MPB. I saw a 10 page thread on the issue when doing research.

I don't mind fingerprints and cleaning but if it's permanent?



What do you notice with the trackpad?
.
Good trackpads are important since one of the things I do is write/edit. It seems there are trackpad issues with the mid 2015 MPB. I saw a 10 page thread on the issue when doing research.

I don't mind fingerprints and cleaning but if it's permanent?



What do you notice with the trackpad?



Hopefully my MPB will hold up. If not I'll have to go with PC. I just don't see Apple committing to well built, long lasting machines anymore. I'm not impressed with the switch to more gimmicky type features (OLED bar?).

What's important to me are build quality, long lasting (is that even possible anymore?), hardware specs, ports, customer service, driver support (if switching to pc), graphics for movie/photo editing.

I agree about add one feature and take away another. It's why I used to be such an Apple fan. It didn't used to be like this with Apple at least.
Tried it out for abit. My 4 year rMBP touchpad still scrolls smoother, much more responsive, and a much better feel then the XPS 15's touchpad. My first MacBook taught me that I don't need a mouse anymore. Using the XPS 15 made me crave for one again....
 

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
10,985
5,493
Hopefully my MPB will hold up. If not I'll have to go with PC. I just don't see Apple committing to well built, long lasting machines anymore. I'm not impressed with the switch to more gimmicky type features (OLED bar?).
What gives you an impression that Apple is less committed to building long-lasting, well built machines? The current models are certainly better built and better designed then the pre-unibody models. They offer top quality keyboards, unrivalled trackpads, one of the best consumer displays, fastest connectivity, top-tier storage, top-tier battery life etc etc etc. Honestly, I don't know of another laptop model that can match a MBP in those parameters. Sure, there are faster computers and there are cheaper computers, but I don't think that any of them achieve balance in the same way as the MBP does.

BTW, out of all companies, Apple is probably the least gimmicky — just look at their resistance towards touchscreens. The OLED bar could actually be a very useful thing, if it allows apps to reconfigure (parts of it) on demand. And it opens the possibility of dynamically reconfigurable keyboards, which would be an incredible life of quality update for people who need to use multiple languages or special symbols on regular basis.
 
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magbarn

macrumors 68020
Oct 25, 2008
2,353
1,438
What gives you an impression that Apple is less committed to building long-lasting, well built machines? The current models are certainly better built and better designed then the pre-unibody models. They offer top quality keyboards, unrivalled trackpads, one of the best consumer displays, fastest connectivity, top-tier storage, top-tier battery life etc etc etc. Honestly, I don't know of another laptop model that can match a MBP in those parameters. Sure, there are faster computers and there are cheaper computers, but I don't think that any of them achieve balance in the same way as the MBP does.

BTW, out of all companies, Apple is probably the least gimmicky — just look at their resistance towards touchscreens. The OLED bar could actually be a very useful thing, if it allows apps to reconfigure (parts of it) on demand. And it opens the possibility of dynamically reconfigurable keyboards, which would be an incredible life of quality update for people who need to use multiple languages or special symbols on regular basis.
I agree with everything you said with the exception of the current keyboards. The rMB is nothing short of atrocious. I should know as I tried to learn to "love it", but after a month of so of trying I gave my rMB to my wife to be used as a facebook laptop. Sincerely hope Apple doesn't ruin my perfect mbp keyboard.
 

dk808

macrumors 6502a
May 13, 2015
616
364
If you think the macbook pro has a lot of hardware issues then just wait until you get a xps 15 lol
 
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JMac1996

macrumors regular
Oct 21, 2016
121
53
Germany, Flensburg
Yep. Dell XPS 15 is really the biggest compettitor to the 15" Macbook Pro. I own a Dell XPS 15" with QHD Display + Touchscreen from (i think it was 2014) and it is a fine machine.
I did the same tasks that you're aiming for on that machine for the last 2 years.
I used Photoshop, Premiere and Bitwig Studio (music production DAW), and it handled everything fine.
So for these tasks the Dell XPS 15 would work fine.

I'm looking forward to switch to the new Macbook Pro.
I'm getting bored of Windows with it's troubles and "features". For me it's time to try the other side now.
:)
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,789
33,749
Boston
Dell XPS is probably the best one out there, at least based on what I saw. Lenovo makes some good solid laptops as well.

I like the Dell personally, they (up until Thursday) leap frogged apple on design, and components.
 

Teague

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 24, 2016
24
6
Dell XPS is probably the best one out there, at least based on what I saw. Lenovo makes some good solid laptops as well.

I like the Dell personally, they (up until Thursday) leap frogged apple on design, and components.
I decided to wait until Thursday to see what they unveil. I looked at the specs on the Dell XPS and it does blow the MBP out of the water. If Apple put out a product like that I'd buy it for sure. Hopefully my current MPB will last.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,789
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Boston
I decided to wait until Thursday to see what they unveil. I looked at the specs on the Dell XPS and it does blow the MBP out of the water. If Apple put out a product like that I'd buy it for sure. Hopefully my current MPB will last.
Definitely wait, we're on the cusp of an update - it makes too much sense to hold off.
 

Teague

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 24, 2016
24
6
I'm just reading through the article posted by MacRumors about the update:

"Rumors suggest the MacBook Pro will continue to be available in the same resolutions as current-generation models (2560 x 1600 for the 13-inch and 2880 x 1800 for the 15-inch), but better display quality and energy efficiency are expected.

Leaked images of the MacBook Pro casing sourced from a Chinese supplier suggest it will include just four USB-C ports and a headphone jack, doing away with the MagSafe port, USB-A ports, the HDMI port, and the SD card slot, so MacBook Pro buyers may need to invest in several adapters."

If this is all true then I'll have to switch to Dell. Argh. I'm just not pleased with the prospect of having to buy new adaptors. And I need that HDMI port for photography as well as the SD card slot.

I'm really hoping the keyboard won't be like the on on MBA.
[doublepost=1477423435][/doublepost]Just went to the Dell website again. I can get a 4k display with all the specs I need for $2000 plus a new tv. It's really tempting. That display looks awesome. They are having a sale for the next 72 hours. I wonder why.... : )

I'm not sure I want the hassle of switching but with all the adaptors Apple is going to make us buy I think the savings would be upwards to $500-600 at least.

It's hard to contemplate breaking up with Apple. It's been a great relationship.
 
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