Best of the last Vs Worst of the New

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by KeyBlue, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. KeyBlue macrumors newbie

    Jan 22, 2016
    Hi all,

    First off... apologies for another 'what should I buy thread' but I've been thinking about this for quite some time now!

    First... I'm coming from a 2009 C2D 17 MacBook Pro with SSD so anything is an upgrade! Now that I can't get Mac OS Sierra I feel it's time to upgrade.

    So which is the better purchase? (both used).

    2013 512 16gb 15 MacBook Pro
    or 2016 256 8gb 13 MacBook Pro?

    I was all for the 2013 model until I found for the same price I can get a used nonTB version of the latest MacBook Pro. I do like the keyboard, but I'm more concerned about what would be best for my useage?

    70% of the time is web, word processing and light Photoshop, the other 30% is intense Photoshop, 300mb+ files plus potentially some video editing in future.

    Not bothered by the ports too much, what I am bothered about is slow, unresponsiveness.

    I'm seeing it as - older but double the memory, double the RAM, graphics card Vs the later technology.

    The 256gb is a bit of a concern, I've never needed to worry about filling my hard drive before.

  2. Michael Goff Suspended

    Michael Goff

    Jul 5, 2012
    Older one also has the quad core processor while the new one has a dual core because of 15" vs 13".
  3. Sanpete macrumors 68020

    Nov 17, 2016
    The 2013 with the quad core will handle the intense Photoshop better. For future video editing you'll want that graphics card. What price range are you in?
  4. zarathu, Feb 20, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2017

    zarathu macrumors 6502


    May 14, 2003
    I'll weigh in for you. I have a late 2103(IG) 2.6 ghz 256 16gig 15 inch MBP.

    1. if you have had 17 inches of space you might find severe cramping with the 13. I have a 2011 21.5 inch iMac but but found that most of my work done now is either in the living room downstairs or on the road traveling or in libraries. I was using most recently a 12 inch c2d Thinkpad running Linux Ubuntu 14.04. I found that the screen was just not enough space, even though I had multiple spaces. and it just wasn't fun.

    2. I have found using the new-to-me 2013 MBP that it is about 2-3 times faster than my desktop iMac, excluding the fact that the SSD is faster than the HDD. But I had an SSD in the thinkpad.

    3. Right now I am using activity monitor, safari and Oracle Virtual running XP. I am drawing 7 gigs of RAM. I often find I am using 11 or 12 gigs with multiple applications only. I'd go with the 16 gb RAM.

    4. The 512 will give you extra space, but quite honestly, after I cleaned out all the stuff that I only use very occasionally and put it on a cheap 2 TB auxiliary HDD, I find that my 256 gb SSD stays pretty stable at having 170-180 gb open and available all the time. So... the drive space means least of any of the specs.

    5. I think in the long run that the 15 inch would be more useful to you unless you have some extreme portability need. I find that I carry a book, and other stuff like an external logitech mouse, the electricity brick, and headphones with me in a new purple back pack---no matter what. So having something really small is not really an issue. Besides TV and movies are a lot more enjoyable on the 15 inch than my other machine.

    6. Speed? The 2013 i7 Quad is going to blow away the 2016 i5 core2duo. My late 2013 is is only about 5% slower than the current 2016 model, unless you are doing really intensive video editing work. You can't tell a 5% difference. And unless you are transferring really large files, you won't be able to tell that the SSD is 3 times faster. What difference in the real world is bringing something up at 1/3 of a sec rather than a second?

    7. Ports? You'll actually have ports you can use right now, rather than ones that people might use in the future. Thunderbolt is wonderful, for example, but unless you are made of money, you will not find a lot of reasonably priced peripherals that operate on anything besides USB 3. And so I have 2 Thunderbolt ports now which are virtually useless. And to convert them to USB requires a $75 adaptor. But I also have two USB 3, an SSD, that wonderful magsafe power connector, and a wonderful HDMI output for TV's and external projection devices.

    8. The battery might be an issue since it will be older. But remember that you can get an external battery to connect to your power that is only as big as a portable HDD, for about $120, and will have twice the power of your internal battery.

    I guess you can see which I'd take!
  5. KeyBlue thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 22, 2016
    Wow! Thank you so much for your replies!

    Both are about £1,000-£1,200 used on eBay from Mac specialists. I won't be using it daily so I'm pretty strict with the budget.

    Portability isn't too much of an issue, I'm more of a power user in that I'll be doing a million tasks at once and want everything super smooth.

    Think I'm leaning back to the 2013 model!
  6. Mindinversion macrumors 6502


    Oct 9, 2008
    The ONLY problem with going for the 2013 is the fact that it's 3 years old, it runs HOT while stressed, and you don't know what it's been through. It's definitely the more bang for your buck alternative, but I'm always a bit suspicious about what a machine has been through. How many battery cycles has it gone through? What was it used for? was someone watching videos for 3 years, or was someone maxing out the CPU 8 hours a day?

    The 2016 is more efficient, less powerful, but still roughly NEW. At least you can be reasonably sure it hasn't been used, abused, set on fire, fried, repaired, painted, cleaned up, and made to look relatively new.

    Which is not to say you shouldn't go with the 15". . .but I'd do a LOT more research and asking of questions before I committed either way.
  7. zarathu macrumors 6502


    May 14, 2003
    Will they give you a warranty? I bought a late 2013 from PowerMax in Oregon, USA(I live on the east coast). They offered me an unconditional warranty for $99 extra for a year. I took it. Probably won't need it, but it good to know if something major goes, I have some back up.
  8. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    Personally, I favor the 15-inch, BUT, what would sway me one way or another would likely be the warranty. Neither computer is very repairable, so when something goes wrong it often means replacing the most expensive part in the computer, and a high 3-digit repair figure. If the used one comes as-is (where as the new one comes with a 1 year warranty with AppleCare eligibility), I would go new. If the 15-inch happened to come with the same warranty or a warranty through the Mac Retailer (or was a refurbished model, which would have to be a 2014/2015), then I would say 15 in a heartbeat. Just my opinion, FWIW.
  9. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    That seems over priced to me, Maybe I'm out of touch with the used computer sector, but buying a 4 year old computer is the same price of a 2016 computer. Granted, the older is a 15" model and the newer one is a 13" but that still seems odd to me.
  10. SteveJUAE macrumors 68030


    Aug 14, 2015
    Land of Smiles
    I agreed my youngest sons same spec 2013 MBP 15" barely got $700 and I suspect some open box demo unit from bestbuy for a 2016 13" may well be worth a lot less

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9 February 20, 2017