Buying an older Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mogolfiero, Aug 19, 2015.

  1. mogolfiero macrumors newbie

    mogolfiero

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2013
    #1
    Hey there people.

    I am looking for some advice.

    A friend of mine has decided to sell his Late 2011 Macbook Pro 13.3 inch and his asking price is 500 euros (+ - )
    I am on the market for a new laptop but my budget was around 1000 euros. So all new Macbooks with retina are out of the question. I was thinking of buying a MBA but they are pretty expensive as well.

    The question now is, is it worth it to spend money on an old laptop? I already know that i would have to spend around 150 euros more to upgrade to an SSD and 8gb of ram (it currently has 4gb)

    The thing that makes me wonder if it is worth buying is that the laptop is in an excellent condition. He bought it in 2012 and has barely used it. Even the battery hasn't had more than 50 cycles.

    So we are talking about a 2011 Laptop for 650$ (lets make it easy and use bucks :p).

    Is it worth the hassle? Do they still perform well?

    Thanks guys
     
  2. davorB macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2011
    Location:
    I live in a small comunity near Jerusalem,Israel
    #2
    Hello!! I am an owner of MBP early 2011 which works vary well. I also own mid 2014 MBP so in the time of work that I do I can see vary little difference. Speed only!!! Good Luck
     
  3. wchigo macrumors 6502

    wchigo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    #3
    What are you going to be doing on it? If you're not going to be pushing it too hard, I don't see why it wouldn't be a pretty good purchase especially as the machine has only been lightly used until now. Upgrading the RAM is a good idea and changing the HD out for an SSD is possibly the best way to put more money into the laptop as it will make it just that much faster.

    A newer MacBook Air might be faster and more portable, but the screen will be worse than the one in the MBP and isn't upgradeable which is a negative to many folks out there.
     
  4. mogolfiero thread starter macrumors newbie

    mogolfiero

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2013
    #4

    I wont be using it that hard. Mainly the normal stuff and some Matlab/Autocad Inventor.

    That was my dilemma as well, going for a used older MBA something from 2012-13 but they mostly come with 4gb ram which isnt upgradable and the CPU is slow

    If this machine was the MBP late 2012 i would have bought it in a heartbeat with its USB 3.0 and BT 4.0

    The fact that its a late 2011 model makes me think about the purchase, but it would still cover what i should be doing on the laptop.

    Im so confused :p
     
  5. wchigo macrumors 6502

    wchigo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    #5
    Indeed, being so used to the speeds of USB 3.0 I'm not sure I could stand going back.

    May I ask how long are you planning to keep this laptop? If you're only going to use it in the meantime for 1-2 years before upgrading to a new one, then it might not be that bad. Honestly putting in the SSD will be the biggest "game changer" if you haven't already had experience with one; it really is amazing how much of a difference it can make in day-to-day use, arguably even more so than adding RAM and getting a faster CPU in my opinion. You could probably get by with 4GB RAM if you're using Mavericks or older, but I've heard some people say that Yosemite didn't run so well on their machines with 4GB (I can't speak from personal experience.)

    The CPU of a MBA will be slower versus a MBP but looking at your use case I don't believe you'll notice that much of a difference, especially with Turbo Boost. Mostly comes down to the better screen and upgradeability of the Pro vs better ports/connections and better portability in the Air. I don't think I made things any easier for you in this post, haha.:oops:
     
  6. mogolfiero thread starter macrumors newbie

    mogolfiero

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2013
    #6

    Hehe well no you didnt make things easier, but thanks for the conversation, it helps a lot :)

    I'm planning on using this for about 2 years i guess. I am currently running a Hackintosh with pretty much normal specs (Sandybridge, 8gb Ram, Samsung SSD etc) and wanted to try out a Macbook before jumping into something more serious with a retina display and a price tag of 1500$.

    I guess this should do the job just fine and for 500$ it wont hurt that much. I can upgrade pretty much everything, besides the Usb 3.0 ports. And a solution with 2 hard disks in the laptop would make my USB Stick not that important.

    Oh welp I guess i'm trying to convince myself lol.

    My worry was if the Sandybridge would be powerfull enough, but since im currently using a Sandybridge for my main pc I should know better right? :)

    Thanks!
     
  7. wchigo macrumors 6502

    wchigo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    #7
    That is true; having a second disk slot would allow you to remove the optical drive (afaik) and replace that with another drive, giving you even more storage.

    I think that if you're just going to use this for a couple years in order to "dip your toe" into the world of portable Apple computers, going with the MBP is probably a pretty good choice. You can basically put a little more money into it to get more RAM and an SSD and it will perform better than a 2012 MBA, USB 3.0 aside and some other connections aside. I don't really use Bluetooth on my laptop so that has never been a consideration for me. And Sandybridge is still fine.

    Let's say 650 euros over two years comes out to 325 euros per year, or about 27 euros per month. That's a pretty good entry price point into the world of MacBooks. ;)
     
  8. mogolfiero thread starter macrumors newbie

    mogolfiero

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2013
    #8
    Your last point about how much it would cost every month helped me a lot :p More than all of the reviews. Its pretty easy to swallow and I'm sure i will not regret it.

    Looks like im gonna have a "new" Macbook Pro in a couple of days, if it doesn't work out and im surprisingly disappointed then my sister might get a new laptop for a decent price hehe

    Thanks man :)
     
  9. wchigo macrumors 6502

    wchigo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    #9
    Glad I could be of assistance.:D Hope you'll enjoy your new MBP!
     

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