Best Options for a 13" retina MacBook Pro

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Dj64Mk7, Jan 22, 2014.

  1. Dj64Mk7 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2013
    #1
    As of today, I'm saving up for a retina MacBook Pro. In order to know exactly how much I should save up, I'm going to ask you a question. Which options (SSD/RAM/processor) make the best value for the money (as in dollar/GB and such)?

    Right now, I'm looking at two upgrades: the SSD (I have 160GB in my current cMBP), and the processor (which one would be enough for a GarageBand project that has ~15 tracks?). I figure the RAM is already taken care of, since 8GB comes standard with the SSD upgrades (my cMBP has 8GB right now.)

    Based on what I described, what do you think would be the best value for the money (keep in mind that I get the Education discount)?
     
  2. Buck987 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    #2
    And you're using it for what?
     
  3. Dj64Mk7 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2013
    #3
    A lot of web browsing, emails, word processing, and spreadsheet creation. Some GarageBand (each project has ~15 tracks), and iMovie (using the aforementioned GarageBand projects; posting these iMovie files to YouTube). A tiny bit of image editing and creation in Pixalmator. No gaming at all.
     
  4. chlc macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2014
    #4
    I would say shoot for the base model 13" rMBP but upgrade the ram to 8gb. Yes you would have a smaller ssd @ 128GB but I would really recommend getting one or two external ssds / hds to make up for that. I believe the ssd is the only thing you can upgrade in the future anyway.

    For what you want to do 8GB should be enough. I feel 16GB would be overkill, but if you feel you need it, then go for it. If you have the money I think the ideal setup would be the new 13"rMBP with 8GB ram and 256GB ssd.

    But I'm looking at it from a portability standpoint. I wouldn't want to lug around a 15" mbp, plus it's a huge price gap.

    You might even be able to get away with an air (13"), but I would say definitely 8GB or 16GB or ram ( I think they only go to 8) and 256GB ssd.
     
  5. Buck987 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    #5
    I would go with the mid level 13"...plenty of power with decent storage.
     
  6. AnorexicPig macrumors 6502

    AnorexicPig

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2012
    Location:
    Winnipeg,Canada/New Delhi India
    #6
    I guess you can't buy 13" rMBP with a 128GB SSD and 8GB RAM.It has to be 256/8 combo.
     
  7. notjustjay macrumors 603

    notjustjay

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Canada, eh?
    #7
    I went for a mid-level rMBP with 8/256. I actually got lucky and found an open-box in the local store for $200 off.

    RAM is soldered and can never be upgraded. The SSD could, in theory, be swapped out in the future. If you are dead set on keeping this thing for as long as possible then an upgrade to 16 GB of RAM might make sense, but personally I'd save that extra few hundred dollars. If, in five years time I find that 8 GB of RAM is no longer sufficient for day-to-day tasks, then I'll sell the rMBP and buy whatever is current at that time.

    My past several Apple laptops have been "buy them and run them into the ground" machines. Other folks buy a model, then sell it a year or two later at reasonable resale value and upgrade to the latest-and-greatest. I have a feeling that I'll be somewhere in the middle this time around.
     
  8. Dj64Mk7 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2013
    #8
    What do you mean by that?

    ----------

    Right. That's the configuration I wasn't going to even look at, because I have 160GB now, and I don't think I'd do too well with 128GB.

    Going with that, would you recommend the 256GB or 512GB (1TB is too expensive)?
     
  9. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Location:
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    #9
    You can't update RAM after you purchase.

    As for SSD size, 256 would be fine as you can always use external SSD or HDDs . At the moment there's no one but Apple producing SSDs for retina, but OWC might come up with one themselves.
     
  10. AnorexicPig macrumors 6502

    AnorexicPig

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2012
    Location:
    Winnipeg,Canada/New Delhi India
    #10
    Personally I am fine even with 128, but I had to go for 256GB as I wanted 8GB of RAM. How much space you need is very much based on your personal use case. If you have say around 40GB free on your 160GB drive, go for 256, if you are already at around 160GB,maybe look at 512 option then.
     
  11. chlc macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2014
    #11
    Well you can't buy it physically from the apple store. But on the apple website and macmall.com you can select the 128/4 combo and just opt to upgrade to 8GB RAM for an additional $90/95.

    It just makes it a custom order that has to be delivered to your home or an apple store to be picked up.

    That's what I'll be doing in a few minutes since I don't have an issue with the ssd size (will be upgradeable / i use external hd's as well) but didn't want to skimp on ram and can't afford 16GB
     
  12. notjustjay macrumors 603

    notjustjay

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Canada, eh?
    #12
    Meaning I buy the Mac and use it until either it physically breaks down or I just can't stand it anymore because it's too slow to get work done.

    (As opposed to buying a Mac, using it for 2 years, selling the used machine for $800, buying another one, etc.)

    My first Mac laptop was a 12" PowerBook G4 and it was my daily computer until its hard drive crashed after about 5 years. Right around then Apple switched from PPC to Intel so I figured it was time to update. Instead of a new MacBook I opted for an iMac, and for a while I kept the iMac as my daily use machine and used the G4 for travel and light use -- much like you might use an iPad today.

    My next laptop was a 2007 MacBook Pro, and it lasted about 6 years. The optical drive is now on the fritz, the battery only goes for about an hour, I've dropped and dented a corner, and all the rubber feet have been ripped off, but it still ticks and it would still be my main machine if it weren't for the impulse buy of this new 13" rMBP last month (I would have downgraded from Mavericks back to Mountain Lion though... man does Mavericks slow it down.)

    So I fully expect this new rMBP to give me about 5 years of useful service. Here's hoping.
     
  13. AnorexicPig macrumors 6502

    AnorexicPig

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2012
    Location:
    Winnipeg,Canada/New Delhi India
    #13
    whoops, so stupid of me, I just purchased a 13" rMBP, from Apple online store, and don't know why, the fact that I can upgrade my RAM on 128GB version completely skipped me, and I ended up owning the 256/8 GB version. Anyhow, the extra space can't hurt !
     
  14. chlc macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2014
    #14
    haha expensive mistake, but I'm sure you'll be more than happy with the extra space! If I had the funds I would have definitely just gotten that. Well if I had enough money, I would have bought the 8GB / 256 GB 15" rMBP lol

    Happy everything worked out! Anxiously waiting for my computer now sigh
     
  15. AnorexicPig macrumors 6502

    AnorexicPig

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2012
    Location:
    Winnipeg,Canada/New Delhi India
    #15
    You are sure gonna love it, its an awesome machine :D
     

Share This Page