Bad Time to Buy?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by hockeyplayr, Apr 17, 2013.

  1. hockeyplayr macrumors newbie

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    Apr 17, 2013
    #1
    Here is my story. I have never used a mac for more than an hour at a time at say a friends house. However I plan on applying (and re-applying if necessary) to various dev bootcamp type programs (Dev Bootcamp - Learn Ruby on Rails in 9 weeks.) to hopefully kickstart a web development career. When I was majoring in comp sci during college the machines I used were always either linux based or windows. However these bootcamp programs use macs and recommend purchasing one if you want to work at home while enrolled in the program (I am assuming for ease of use purposes in regards to setting up the environment). I wish to get a head start as some require completion of code exercises during the application process so I am thinking about purchasing a mac. Would now be a bad time to buy? When do they usually roll out bumped up specs? and if anyone has any input between purchasing an air or a mbp for web development it would be helpful.

    Thanks

    Edit: I'd like to add that I have a lenovo laptop that I currently use for everything including some gaming so I don't necessarily need the macbook to be a jack of all trades type laptop.
     
  2. thundersteele macrumors 68030

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    Switzerland
    #2
    Its not a particularly bad time, updates still seem to be a few months down the road. Some models also had minor spec bumps early this year, so technically they are up to date.
     
  3. B... macrumors 68000

    B...

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    Mar 7, 2013
    #3
    Mac laptops are typicaly introduced at WWDC in June, then released later. This year, with the Intel processor Haswell delayed due to a USB 3.0 glitch, the processors will not be available until July-August. Do do not expect the computers until August- September pessimistically. For web developement, what types of programs do you use and how demanding are they on the system? While the Air is powerful for basic tasks, its 1.8 GHz ULV processor might not be ideal for more intense work.

    I would say wait if you can, but buy if you must. The computers now are plenty powerful, and if you want to buy a cMBP (non-retina) then you should consider that Apple might discontinue them this year or just not update them this year. The Air updates should be more interesting...
     
  4. thaifood macrumors 6502

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    Jun 8, 2011
    #4
    Apple generally announce their new laptops at the WWDC in June. They align their releases with the new Intel offering each each (2013 = Haswell).

    From there they tend to release the new products within 1-2 months from announcement. Sometimes sooner.

    Considering you have the Lenovo you would only really need something to just get the job done for study. Perhaps a Macbook Air 13 inch or normal Macbook Pro if you need the extra screen space.

    Current Macbook Airs have a TN display. New models, in my opinion, will have IPS displays. SSD as standard but the price is a bit more obviously. But if you are just running Bootcamp you can probably get away with 4gb RAM and maybe 128gb storage.

    The normal Macbook Pro offers IPS as standard, larger mechanical HDD as standard, and bigger screen if you need it.

    They would be my picks considering you have gaming and, I assume, all other media covered by the Lenovo.

    No point spending big on a Retina Macbook Pro unless you have a bit of spare cash.
     
  5. B... macrumors 68000

    B...

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    #5
    That is not true. Regular Macbook Pros do not come with IPS displays; only the Retinas do. See this Apple Support Communities thread. It is still TN but with better viewing angles and colors than the Air.

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/2764185?start=0&tstart=0
     
  6. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    #6
    I'm guessing new mbps in about 2 months. Intel is planning release of new chips in early june, so maybe mid-june? No one knows.
     
  7. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #7
    If your going to spend long hours coding, then a Retina is not a bad way to go, and your eyes will thank you in the long run :) If resolution is not a concern, and cash is look at a refurb from Apple. Personally I wouldn't wait, as I would rather get going than wait for the next generation to come along. I would skip the Air as it`s a little too inflexible, without the benefits of the Retina.
     
  8. hockeyplayr thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 17, 2013
    #8
    thanks for all the responses. I've been doing more research and I am leaning toward a 15 in mbp without the retina display simply because I'd be able to upgrade parts as necessary on my own. Anyone think the retina display would make a huge difference if I'd be staring at it for hours?
     
  9. B... macrumors 68000

    B...

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    #9
    It would, in terms of eye fatigue. The color reproduction on the rMBP is unbeatable; in contrast, the regular computers seem oversaturated and fake-bright.
     
  10. hockeyplayr thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 17, 2013
    #10
    I think I am going to have to go over to an apple store and play with a couple of these. The 13in rMBP seems like it'd be better than the air but then again its a 13 inch screen and a smaller, although solid state, drive compared to the 15 mbp. decisions, decisions.
     
  11. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    For web development the 15" with high res display remains the best choice. You want to see your content as others would, and the insane resolution of the Retina display makes this hard.

    I get around this by connecting mine to a 20" Cinema Display (that I bought with my last Powerbook- almost 10 years ago!) with 1680x1050 resolution, the same as the high res 15". Not an ideal setup for a bootcamp type of program where portability is important though.
     
  12. abc123 macrumors 6502

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    Apr 26, 2004
    #12
    Unless you are running the retina screen at 2880x1800 then you shouldn't have much issue?

    If you set it to scale to a more normal resolution like 1440 or 1680 it will look more or less like it would on other monitors, just crisper in places (e.g text) and maybe a little fuzzier in others?
     
  13. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    That's just it, though. It's not the scale (necessarily) that would be off-- it's the entire visual experience. Virtually nothing aside from content made with Retina resolution in mind will look right at this DPI.

    There's also the issue that a number of apps (including about 2/3 of CS6, as well as a few other staples like AutoCAD) aren't written for the Retina display. 90% of what I use looks just fine but there's still the occasional moment where I open something I don't use all that frequently (Audition, for example) and it just looks like crap.

    It doesn't bother me because I keep the option to work at a 'standard' native resolution in the form of a desktop monitor.
     
  14. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

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    #14
    I recommend 15" Retina over non-Retina. Why? The only two components you can "upgrade" is RAM and hard drive. The Retina comes with 8GB standard which is plenty for web development and programming. I am working on several web projects right now and several programming projects. I have a base 2012 13" MBA with 4GB RAM and 128GB SSD. The "upgradeability" of a cMBP is overrated and overhyped.

    Retina display does make a huge difference if you're staring at it for hours. I wanted a small laptop and the 13" Retina wasn't available when I bought my Air. But if it was, I would have gotten the 13" Retina. Unless you need the dGPU in the 15", I think a 13" MBA or rMBP is solid. I find the 15" really big but I'm not a big/tall guy.
     
  15. hockeyplayr thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 17, 2013
    #15
    I am going between the 13 in rMBP and the 15 in right now. With the air I'd max out the specs and with the cpus available for it the $1800 doesn't seem worth it. May just spring for the maxed out 15 in retina at this point so I don't sit at home down the road and say hmm I should have gotten one with such and such instead.
     
  16. AppleMacFinder macrumors 6502a

    AppleMacFinder

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    Dec 7, 2009
    #16
    No it is not.

    Retina MBP could have 16 GB of RAM at max, 1600 MHz frequency and CAS Latency is 11.
    In terms of performance (bandwidth), 1600 MHz CL 11 is equal to 1333 MHz CL 9.
    Meanwhile, classic MBP could have 1600 MHz CL 9 RAM (bandwidth up to 20% higher),
    and up to 32 GB of RAM (memory support of Sandy Bridge computers is defined by CPU)

    Retina MBP could have only one hard drive, with a proprietary connector.
    And proprietary connector means overpriced hard drives. Moreover,
    you could not use Optibay and have two hard drives at the same time.
    Meanwhile, classic MBP does not have these disadvantages.

    I may seem to be a little biased because I have cMBP.
    But even if I would be making a buyer's decision today, my choice still would be a classic MBP.
    I would rather have upgradability and functionality than a fancy screen :p Function over form ;)
    However, if I had extra money, I would definitely try to create a hybrid:
    classic MBP body + retina LCD panel, to combine the best of two worlds.
     
  17. swerve147 macrumors 6502a

    swerve147

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    Jan 12, 2013
    #17
    To reiterate there are no 16GB 204-pin DDR3 SO-DIMM memory sticks in existence right now. So no 32GB RAM for any MBP. Will they be available 5 years from now? Maybe, but prepare to be disappointed. DDR4 is around the corner.

    Ultimately if you want a 32GB notebook you shouldn't be looking at any Apple MacBook Pro. You need a notebook that can handle 4 8GB sticks.
     
  18. AppleMacFinder macrumors 6502a

    AppleMacFinder

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    #18
    Yes I know that there are no 16GB SO-DIMM at the moment, but surely they would appear a bit later.
    If I remember correctly, 4GB DDR2 SO-DIMM sticks appeared only after the release of DDR3 SO-DIMM.
    And it is unlikely that we would see DDR4 in consumer computers until Broadwell, so DDR3 is still alive ;)

    Unfortunately, there is no Macbook Pro which could handle 4 sticks, and I am not interested in PC laptops.
     
  19. hockeyplayr thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 17, 2013
    #19
    well I went to the store today with the intention of either picking up a 15 cMBP or a rMBP (fully loaded). What I ended up leaving with was a 13 in fully loaded macbook air. It felt better to type on, less clunky, and believe it or not I liked the screen more than the retina. seemed to lag a little less when zipping around on the comp. So far, this is my first 20 minutes with the comp at home, I am satisfied. After all I do have a decently powerful pc, comparable to the maxed out 15 in retina minus the ssd, that I could use if necessary but in terms of portability and performance this seemed to be the best.
     
  20. chrisrosemusic1 macrumors 6502a

    chrisrosemusic1

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    #20
    Good choice tbh - I went for the rMBP 13 cos I bought a refurb. Up to that point I was dead set on the Air for my needs but when they were both the same price I couldn't pass up on the sharper display.

    Hope you enjoy it, I've been with Macs for about 14 years now and wouldn't go back to Windows.
     
  21. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

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    #21
    The number of people who want/use a dual hard drive setup is relatively small. The same goes for people who want/need more than 8/16GB of RAM. The part I highlighted in red makes no sense. Are you saying the rMBP doesn't have any function? I beg to differ. It has function and upgradeability. Just not exactly the same as the cMBP. Let's not forget the rMBP has 2 Thunderbolt ports AND 1 HDMI. You might not care for these, but others do.

    I would guess that for the vast majority of people who buy the cMBP, they won't ever do a dual hard drive setup. Or even upgrade the RAM. The reason I say upgradeability is overhyped is because most people won't ever utilize it. You might, but you're one person. But all the power to you.

    I agree. I would never max out the specs on an Air. The CPU upgrade doesn't give you that much of a performance boost. RAM? Meh. I'm working on a several web projects and programming projects for clients and my MBA has 4GB of RAM. I also run a few Linux VMs (only 1 at a time). Is more better? Probably. But I'm not having any noticeable issues.

    ----------

    Your entire argument about 32GB RAM is based on the future that there is going to be 16GB RAM sticks. No one knows for sure that it will actually be produced or not. Chances are it will but as of right now, 16GB is most you can have in any MBP. And as of right now, RAM upgradeability is more of cost issue since you can buy it for less than what Apple charges as a BTO option.
     
  22. makaveli559m macrumors 6502

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    Apr 30, 2012
    #22
    It has function and upgradeability. Just not exactly the same as the cMBP? You only have the option of upgrading at the time of purchase so that doesn't count, it isn't like you can get a 40.00 hard drive to get more space right? No externals do count so if you reply don't give examples of external devices. Last thing anyone needs to hear yes you can have a lot of option like an optical drive they only cost about 60.00 or 80.00 :|
     
  23. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    I'm thinking about buying my wife a 13" MBA to replace the late 2008 13" MBP she's been using since it was new. The viewing angles on the screen and the fact that she's been asking for a bigger screen (after using my 15") have been the only thing putting me off from doing it. Let me know how you like it.

    What do you prefer about the MBA's keyboard? Travel and pitch seemed about the same as my rMBP on the ones I've used. It definitely had a bit less travel than the cMBP. My favorite Apple keyboard is still the standard $50 wired aluminum chiclet model with numpad.

    Also curious what you meant by "clunky". As compared to the 15" cMBP I assume?
     
  24. hockeyplayr thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 17, 2013
    #24
    yeah compared to the cMBP. As far as keyboard, I type with my wrists resting on I guess the bottom taper of the laptop and my forearms on a table (if the laptop is on one). It being smaller in width makes it more comfortable. I could be an odd duck though
     
  25. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    Oh, no, I understand perfectly. One of the things I liked about the Retina model is that it reduces wrist strain when resting my palms on my desk and using the trackpad. Same principle with the Apple USB keyboard I mentioned in my last post- flat keyboards are ergonomically preferable for me. The tapered design of the MBA seems like it would be very comfortable.

    I was only asking because the chiclet keyboards of MacBooks since the Unibody model was released seem to be very consistent in typing experience. The exception is that, as I said, the thicker models (classic Pros) have slightly more horizontal travel, accomodated by the thicker design.
     

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