Buying a 2015 MBP in 2017

taxi_driver

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 26, 2017
72
12
Pretty much what the thread title reads - are 2015's still worth buying in 2017?

saw some refurbs hit the Apple store online. while there isnt a huge difference in price (if at all) between them and newer models, i'm curious if the old keyboard + I/O still detract people from the newer machines.
 

370zulu

macrumors regular
Nov 4, 2014
217
172
Mid-2015 15” (16G ram, 512ssd, Radeon Video) here. Purchased new and have not upgraded because this machine is a tank. Not sure about the upgradability of the 2017 ssd. Not sure if that matters to you though.
 
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Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
My 15” rMBP 2015 is my workhorse; she does everything I throw at her...... At the time I bought her (December 2015) there was a lot of uncertainty about what the next generation of MacBook Pros would offer and in what configuration, and so I decided it would be a good idea to go ahead and get the 2015 model so that regardless of what happened next, I’d be set for a while. I had also looked at the then-current iMacs and realized that I didn’t want to go that route. For me this strategy has paid off, and in the meantime I’ve also gotten into newer territory in a smaller way by just over a year ago going with a 12” 2016 MacBook and getting accustomed to USB-C and figuring out dongles, different cables, etc. So now have since just recently shifted to a 2017 MacBook for my travel/portable needs while my 15” rMB 2015 keeps things perking along on the home front. Maybe in another year or so I’ll be ready to seriously consider replacing my beloved 2015 15” rMBP!
 

Algus

macrumors regular
Jun 8, 2014
222
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Arizona
My Ivy Bridge machine is still really snappy for everything besides graphics. The one advantage that the new units have over the computers that were released a couple years ago is USB-C and its potential for external graphics (which should easily cover the performance gap from old integrated chips)

My 2014 13'' Pro still sings. Anything that supports retina is going to be a good machine for you for a few years down the road.
 

palmerc2

macrumors 68000
Feb 29, 2008
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Los Angeles
I’ve been asking myself the same question, as I’ve seen 2015 15” hitting the refurbished store.

I am not a professional user at all, so the difference between older tech vs newer tech won’t matter at all. I simply want a 15” Mac, and it sounds like many people prefer the older MBP vs new, mainly because of the keyboard. Would be better to have USB-C on the 2015 model, oh well.....
 

Mac-key

macrumors 6502a
Apr 1, 2010
666
82
Alabama
As someone who literally pulled the trigger on a 15" 2015 rMBP three days ago I can tell you YES! Obviously it depends on what you will be doing with your machine.

I'm a professional photographer and videographer. I do TONS of editing using Adobe's creative suite. My last machine (a 2011 15' MBP) did everything I needed it to do until it died last week.

I chose the 2015 over the newer models because I don't like the keyboards on the newer ones, AND ALL my hard drives require USB ports... I didn't want to deal with gettin adaptors are whatever else needed to connect them to the 2017 MBP.

Time is money for me and I knew the 2015 would do just fine!
 
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taxi_driver

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 26, 2017
72
12
If you can stomach the fact that you're paying a premium for "old" tech, I think they are fantastic. I much prefer them to the newer models in every way other than raw performance.
agreed and even with the boost in horsepower, I had to remind myself that my 2011 worked mostly okay just became cumbersome to travel with and fan noise was appalling. the fact that the 2017 nTB's have a lot of noise complaints didn't help either.

My 15” rMBP 2015 is my workhorse; she does everything I throw at her...... At the time I bought her (December 2015) there was a lot of uncertainty about what the next generation of MacBook Pros would offer and in what configuration, and so I decided it would be a good idea to go ahead and get the 2015 model so that regardless of what happened next, I’d be set for a while. I had also looked at the then-current iMacs and realized that I didn’t want to go that route. For me this strategy has paid off, and in the meantime I’ve also gotten into newer territory in a smaller way by just over a year ago going with a 12” 2016 MacBook and getting accustomed to USB-C and figuring out dongles, different cables, etc. So now have since just recently shifted to a 2017 MacBook for my travel/portable needs while my 15” rMB 2015 keeps things perking along on the home front. Maybe in another year or so I’ll be ready to seriously consider replacing my beloved 2015 15” rMBP!
I really really wanted a rMB but couldn't get past paying that much of a premium for the power it offered, even at the cost of being fanless. Find it interesting that Huawei was able to get a U-series chip in their laptop without a fan.

My Ivy Bridge machine is still really snappy for everything besides graphics. The one advantage that the new units have over the computers that were released a couple years ago is USB-C and its potential for external graphics (which should easily cover the performance gap from old integrated chips)

My 2014 13'' Pro still sings. Anything that supports retina is going to be a good machine for you for a few years down the road.
I’ve been asking myself the same question, as I’ve seen 2015 15” hitting the refurbished store.

I am not a professional user at all, so the difference between older tech vs newer tech won’t matter at all. I simply want a 15” Mac, and it sounds like many people prefer the older MBP vs new, mainly because of the keyboard. Would be better to have USB-C on the 2015 model, oh well.....
The lack of USB-C is something I'm feeling slightly remorseful on in terms of future proofing, even though nothing I use currently has it nor do I even plan to use a e-GPU w/ TB3.
 

Macintoshrumors

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Oct 18, 2016
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I saw those but looks like the good ones are gone. the only ones that are left have actual hard disk drives which wouldn't be worth it today even if you find a ssd and stick it in. might as well buy the new models
 

taxi_driver

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 26, 2017
72
12
I find it pretty fascinating that at nearly or at exact same price, the stock of refurb 2016/2017's is unmoved whereas the 2yr MBP flew off. says a lot.

I saw those but looks like the good ones are gone. the only ones that are left have actual hard disk drives which wouldn't be worth it today even if you find a ssd and stick it in. might as well buy the new models
I've been routinely checking the refurb inventory and saw a bunch have hit in the past 24hrs. I'd keep an eye out, there's a website that tracks/notifies of new drops https://refurb-tracker.com
 
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ilikewhey

macrumors 65816
May 14, 2014
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nyc upper east
i would buy a 2015 in 2017 but not for the price apple charging,

i actually went with a 2016 fully decked out 13inch mbp, hated the keyboard, felt i was smashing my fingers against my desk more than anything, returned it, and purchased a used one off ebay for 800 bucks less.

if you want a good price look for great deals on ebay.
 

TonyK

macrumors 65816
May 24, 2009
1,026
142
Dang. I would swear a similar thread appeared just like this one because I responded there.

During the spring/summer of this year (2017) I came to the same choice: 2015 or 2016. My decision, based on state of docks, accessories and all was to go with the 2015. Not a fan of the touchbar just yet and with my slew of USB3 devices and the lack of a dock that will charge (at the time I bought) the 2015 was my best choice.

B&H was running a special and got a good value for my system. My 2015 MBP with 1TB SSD and 16GB of memory is brand (or was in June) 2015 model. Not a refurbished model.
 

facemeat

macrumors member
Mar 19, 2016
99
76
Had the new rMBP tb 13 since July, I wish I still had the old design..
It's a good and fast laptop, but keys regularly get stuck despite swapping the keyboard twice, battery life is below average, USB-C is still a nuisance and dongles are annoying. The overall quality is a lot lower than the pre 2016 models IMO.

I get the overall impression that the 2016 and 2017 models have received lukewarm reviews and praise from various forums, overall the 2015 models appear more stable. If I could re-purchase my laptop I would've gone with the 2015.
 
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Naimfan

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If you can stomach the fact that you're paying a premium for "old" tech, I think they are fantastic. I much prefer them to the newer models in every way other than raw performance.
I think this is exactly correct. The three things I prefer about the 2016 model I have are performance, particularly graphics, noise - the 2016 is noticeably quieter under load than the 2015 or earlier models, and speakers.

Other than those, the 2015/earlier models are preferable to me.
 

SB-MBP

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May 11, 2013
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If you can't afford the newer model then yes. Otherwise, no.

Honestly, don't be put off by the negativity on here. If this forum were about in 1998 they'd still be on crying about the iMac not shipping with a floppy drive!

Just do some in person testing of the machines yourself, that's worth more than 1000 off topic threads on here!
 

john123

macrumors 68020
Jul 20, 2001
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If you can't afford the newer model then yes. Otherwise, no.

Honestly, don't be put off by the negativity on here. If this forum were about in 1998 they'd still be on crying about the iMac not shipping with a floppy drive!

Just do some in person testing of the machines yourself, that's worth more than 1000 off topic threads on here!
Respectfully, some of us who dislike the new machines have done that in person testing. I spent a month with a 2016 model. I flat out don't like it.

I'm someone who has purchased and owned roughly 20 PowerBooks, MacBooks, and MacBook Pros. There are some legitimate complaints with the latest iteration. Sure, some people will love them. But that doesn't mean the rest of us are being negative for the sake of being negative.
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
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Yes, they are still worth buying, but IMO are most worth it when the pricing is less than the current models - especially considering you can find i5/8/128 13-inch models for under $1,000 new if you shop around a bit, that pricing makes it worth it, and for those needing a lot of storage they now have 256/512/1024 GB SSD upgrade options.

Only you can assess if one design meets your needs better than the other - personally, I like both designs, although neither are perfect.
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I really really wanted a rMB but couldn't get past paying that much of a premium for the power it offered, even at the cost of being fanless. Find it interesting that Huawei was able to get a U-series chip in their laptop without a fan.
The rMB has a surprising amount of power - it does not perform anything like any other m3-based device I have used, and I was left floored by how much the 2017 model improved over the previous two years. How Apple was able to get the rMB to run so fast with such long battery life, to dissipate heat so rapidly, and to resist thermal throttling so well without a fan, I will never know, but they did an incredible job refining the 2017 models - the only thing lacking is the removal of the headphone jack in exchange for a second USB port, and USB 3.1 gen 2 (the rMB is still legacy USB.)

One huge advantage the rMB has over both the MBP and MBA is that its base SSD is 256 GB - which is far more practical than the base 128. As I am sure you have seen, the biggest savings on Apple sales are usually with base models. With the MBP and MBA, that means accepting a comically small SSD. With the rMB, that means getting something far better. I got my 2017 rMB for something like $1,050 - for what I paid, and considering the quality I got (I'd go as far to say it has the most consistent finish of any Apple product I have owned), I am very happy with the value.

Every Huawei product I have seen thus far has impressed me.
 
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andrew5494

macrumors regular
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
The thing is a fully loaded 2017 Dell XPS 15 is the same price as a base 2015 MacBook Pro...

Im also trying to make a purchase decision. I would rather a new 2017 MacBook Pro but those things are $3000CAD+ !!