Are the mid 2012 macbook pros still good?

bonbon20

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 6, 2017
6
3
Sofia, Bulgaria
What do you guys think of the mid 2012 macbook pros as of 2017?


+ Are they still reliable enough?

+ Is there such a tremendous difference between the 13 and 15 inch models (in terms of performance)?

+ How do they stack up against newer laptops in general?

+ What about buying one in 2017?

+ I know this one is pretty much a personal choice but which one should i go for, 13" or 15" (anything i have to know about them both)?

Thank you in advance!
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,379
32,981
Boston
What do you guys think of the mid 2012 macbook pros as of 2017?
I still use mine.

Are they still reliable enough?
Mine is, though the battery is old, and needs to be replaced.

+ Is there such a tremendous difference between the 13 and 15 inch models (in terms of performance)?
Yes, quad core vs. dual core. 16GB vs. 8 (I think), at least stock configurations. dGPU vs. iGPU

+ How do they stack up against newer laptops in general?
the 2012 model is heavier, slower and uses the older ports.

+ What about buying one in 2017?
If the price is right, its in great condition and the battery was replaced.

+ I know this one is pretty much a personal choice but which one should i go for, 13" or 15" (anything i have to know about them both)?
As stated above, I think the 15" gives you more bang for your buck in terms of memory, processing power and GPU.
 

Patcell

macrumors 6502
Aug 8, 2016
457
198
Bergen County, NJ
The 2012 Pros were excellent machines in their day and probably still are now. I know many people still making good use of 2012 or earlier MacBook Pros or other Mac models. Were you thinking about the Retina or non-Retina models? 2012 had both of them. As for reliability, I would imagine they are still relatively reliable today (depending on how they have been treated/ what they have been used for).

As for the difference between 13" and 15"... they are a completely different class of machine altogether; it is not simply 2 inches of screen real-estate. The 13" inch machines have dual core CPUs whereas, the 15" machines come standard with quad-core processors and (in 2012) all 15" models had discrete graphics processors. BIG difference in performance between the two classes - which to get will depend on what your intended use case will be.

How do they stack up against the newer models..? Not that badly actually... the performance increases with Intel processors since then has not been Earth-shattering... some improvements are substantial and will again depend on your use. Graphics performance has greatly improved between 2012 and 2017, however...

Here is a decent comparison between the 2012 and 2017 15" Pros...

Good luck!
 
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bonbon20

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 6, 2017
6
3
Sofia, Bulgaria
I still use mine.


Mine is, though the battery is old, and needs to be replaced.


Yes, quad core vs. dual core. 16GB vs. 8 (I think), at least stock configurations. dGPU vs. iGPU


the 2012 model is heavier, slower and uses the older ports.


If the price is right, its in great condition and the battery was replaced.


As stated above, I think the 15" gives you more bang for your buck in terms of memory, processing power and GPU.
Thank you! :)
Which one have you got, 13 or 15 inch?
What is it that you value the most, portability or performance?
[doublepost=1502026217][/doublepost]
The 2012 Pros were excellent machines in their day and probably still are now. I know many people still making good use of 2012 or earlier MacBook Pros or other Mac models. Were you thinking about the Retina or non-Retina models? 2012 had both of them. As for reliability, I would imagine they are still relatively reliable today (depending on how they have been treated/ what they have been used for).

As for the difference between 13" and 15"... they are a completely different class of machine altogether; it is not simply 2 inches of screen real-estate. The 13" inch machines have dual core CPUs whereas, the 15" machines come standard with quad-core processors and (in 2012) all 15" models had discrete graphics processors. BIG difference in performance between the two classes - which to get will depend on what your intended use case will be.

How do they stack up against the newer models..? Not that badly actually... the performance increases with Intel processors since then has not been Earth-shattering... some improvements are substantial and will again depend on your use. Graphics performance has greatly improved between 2012 and 2017, however...

Here is a decent comparison between the 2012 and 2017 15" Pros...

Good luck!
Thank you so much!
Leaning towards the 15" 2012..
 
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Daniel L

macrumors 6502
Sep 15, 2009
416
101
I have the 15", to which I've said this many times. It was (and is), the best laptop I've owned. I think is at the pinnacle of design, performance and power.
I agree with this wholeheartedly. It's the computer I've used for the longest amount of time. I was still happy with it almost 5 years later when my previous upgrade cycle was 2-3 years. After having the delaminated screen replaced it was completely solid. Although it's been replaced by Apple with one of the touchbar models, the upgrade is barely noticeable and in some ways a downgrade.
 
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Trey M

macrumors 6502a
Jul 25, 2011
944
305
USA
Yeah the mid 2012 was ahead of its time. As echoed by others, it's still is a great computer 5 years later. I still use mine at work.

OP I'd be willing to sell mine, PM me if interested.
 
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reilogix

macrumors newbie
Sep 26, 2012
20
6
Carlsbad, CA USA
I have a 15" mid-2012 retina MBP, 16GB and the high-end CPU. This thing is SOLID. I just replaced the battery. Apple warranty-replaced the logic board at least once, so beware there. The nice thing about this one, as has been said in a previous comment, is the discrete graphics card. I push 4K via the HDMI port at 30hz (not 60hz) which is just fine for my needs. I can connect (3) simultaneous external monitors, plus the retina display. Some of the newer MBP's and their $300+ 3rd-party docking stations have limitations with the USB-C and/or graphics cards such that you cannot even get 2 non-mirrored external displays, let alone 3. Five years later, I'm still glad I max'd this thing out at purchase.
 
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YanniDepp

macrumors 6502
Dec 10, 2008
487
34
Yes, I have two of them. Both have a 2.5Ghz i5. One is a Retina model with 8GB RAM and a 250GB SSD. One is a non-retina with 16GB RAM and 500GB SSD.

They are both fantastic machines, and I enjoy using them. In fact, I use them more often than I use my 2017 USB-C MacBook Pro.

I've kept them both on Mavericks though. I have newer Macs that run High Sierra, and these five-year-old machines run Mavericks really well. Plus, Mavericks on a retina screen is really pretty.
 

KronosMac

macrumors newbie
Oct 13, 2017
4
1
Would you take a mid 2012 13" for $800 or try to get a newer macpro 13" nonTB with 256gb and 8gb in ram for $1700 as first macbook pro?
 

djdownhill

macrumors regular
Sep 23, 2017
196
203
Los Angeles
I upgraded my wife's 2012 13" with 16gb RAM and a Samsung EVO 850 SSD and the thing as fast as hell. The 2012's were/are rock solid. IMHO...
 

KronosMac

macrumors newbie
Oct 13, 2017
4
1
But would still rock solid if i attempt to do some swift / unity coding with them for that price plus the extras i have to add?
 

dvvdv

macrumors member
Aug 27, 2017
50
22
smoker's lounge
I'm using this version with no problems at all! Expect for the RAM, which can be upgraded to 16GB at the most!
Also it has a disc drive unlike the newer MacBook Pros, so I can play and rip CDs or DVDs. You should be able to find one for $600, very cheap and I still consider it better than the more recent MacBook Pros, obviously because of the disc drive.
 

Count Blah

macrumors 68040
Jan 6, 2004
3,112
2,590
US of A
I have a 15” cMBP that has been upgraded with 16gigs of RAM and SSD+HDD for max storage.

It’s an amazing machine, and I will be VERY sad when it gets replaced. I still use it daily, and since I don’t play games on it, it still does the day to day tasks acceptably fast.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,084
6,530
About the only weakness with the 2012 MBPro (non-retina) is the internal drive ribbon cable.

A good number of them seem to wear prematurely. When this happens, constant "communication" with the internal drive is interrupted, leading to all sorts of glitches (slow boot, freezes, crashes, etc.). Changing out the ribbon cable fixes things and gets back to normal.

Otherwise, they're very solid Macs!
 

Mark Holmes

macrumors member
Sep 22, 2010
90
482
San Diego CA
Mine is awesome - Mid 2012 2.3 quad core with the Geforce discrete graphics - I've updated it with 16GB RAM and an SSD. It has a fantastic keyboard with perfect key travel that has never had a problem, all the normal ports, the Magsafe power, an SD CARD SLOT!!! and can do everything I need. There is even room inside to swap out the optical drive for a second hard drive. Imagine THAT option on a new MacBook Pro.

I'm a videographer and had an out of town gig this year where we did a fair amount of editing of a 5 camera 4K Multicam shoot in Final Cut Pro X on it. It wasn't ideal, performance did take a slight hit, but it was workable, and this is on a 7-year-old laptop.

I would love love love for Apple to return to form, as they did with the Mac Pro, and recognize that professionals need a fully configurable MacBook Pro that can be opened, serviced, hard drives added and replaced, RAM upgraded, all the ports restored, but with a modern processor and display. When I'm using my MacBook Pro for work, the thickness and appearance are last in my list of priorities.

I still could see them doing this; Apple is capable of change. The pro team they put together to address the Mac Pro issues proves it. Here's to hoping.
 
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