Can't Decide Between Mid-2014 13inch & 15inch

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by ACint24, Nov 26, 2014.

  1. ACint24 macrumors member

    Mar 13, 2011
    Hi all,

    I am in the market for a new MacBook and decided I must get one with a retina display! I am considering the following sales: base 13inch for $1199 or the base 15inch for $1499.

    I plan on doing everyday task (email, Internet, music, apps) and like to be able to multitask well. I would also like to have the ability to do some basic photo editing and podcast recording in the future.

    My question is will I really notice any difference other than screen size with the 15inch? It seems very large to me while the 13inch seems like the perfect blend of power and size.

  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    It sounds like you've already made your decision. It's purely a matter of personal preference, something no one else can decide for you. What may be ideal for others may not be ideal for you. Spend some time looking at both screens in the Apple store and then just choose the one that appeals to you most.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I personally found the 13" too small and have since gone to the 15" form factor. That being said, if you think the 13" is the perfect blend of power/size then it looks like you're already wanting that over the 15" laptop.
  4. BenTrovato macrumors 68030


    Jun 29, 2012
    You won't be disappointed with retina! I got a higher spec'd 13" late 2013 refurb and it's fabulous.
  5. ACint24 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 13, 2011
    Thanks guys! I definitely love the size of the 13inch. I guess my worry is that I am giving up a ton of performance by not stepping up to the 15. The apple guy told me for what I'm using it for, I would not even notice but I am not sure if he knows what he's talking about.
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Any Mac model made in the past few years, including the Mac mini, can easily handle the workload you described. I could do all of those things on a 2008 MBP with 4GB of RAM and a spinning HDD, without breaking a sweat.
  7. Zerka macrumors member

    Oct 31, 2014
    San Jose,CA
    Personally, I think 13 inches is too small. But I've used a 15" laptop for the past year and a half. For your use I think either machine will suit you, plenty of power in each for video editing/everyday tasks. You are, however, missing out on some power if you get the 13". For example, the 13" is dual-core while the 15" is quad-core, meaning with high performance tasks you'll enjoy more ease with the 15". But for your use, I believe it comes down to leisure. If you like the size and power of the 13", by all means get it. 15" does get a bit clunky sometimes, but I haven't found many problems with the size of my machine. I think if you've used both MBPs, you'll notice a difference, but other than that you'll probably be happy with your new laptop if you decide to go with the 13" model :D
  8. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    This is what I was about to write.


    And this is the exact advice I would give. :)
  9. bcaslis macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2008
    I've used every version of MacBook since we called them PowerBooks (even had a PowerBook 100). Assuming you intend to transport it often, I've found the 13" rMBP to be the perfect size for me. I recently tried the 15" rMBP and while it's a very nice computer, it's just too large to be a daily transport and use on the lap computer to me. If you are using it mainly on a desk it probably doesn't matter.

    So I returned the 15" and got a maxed out 13". Very happy, only for the most extreme applications that can use the multiple cores is the 15" going to feel much faster. For 99% of applications the 13" is going to feel basically as fast.
  10. brdeveloper macrumors 68020


    Apr 21, 2010
    I think the 15" is lightweight and small enough for people used to 13" classic MBPs.

    2kg & 15" are the sweet spot to me. No need for a smaller and lighter laptop. Of course, if I was used to Macbook Airs, maybe I'd prefer a Retina 13".
  11. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
  12. blooperz macrumors 6502

    Dec 10, 2013
    while the 15 inch is quite a bit more powerful than the 13", with the uses you described I doubt you would notice a difference...none of the tasks you listed benefit much from what the 15" adds.
  13. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    The 13" Retina (both retinas, really) are incredible machines. You won't be disappointed with either one.
  14. gpspad macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    I just came from an old 15" thinkpad with xp, to a mbpR 13" and at first I was ready to ditch the 13" for a 15".

    I used my old lap top moistly on my lap watching tv and what not. The screen size through me at first, it seemed small, but after a few days I really like the 13" size. The screen may be smaller, but the display is brighter and shaper and its so light.

    I need my laptop to travel too, so I think the 13" is going to work out. The 15" would have to be a luxury I just used at home. At apple prices, I can't afford two sizes.

    But do love the 13", its an amazing machine, it does basic internet stuff very well.
  15. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    It does more than just basic internet stuff very well. ;)
  16. johngwheeler macrumors 6502

    Dec 30, 2010
    I come from a land down-under...
    Think about your mobility requirements

    I've just upgraded to a rMBP 15, but still have my MBA 13 for the time being (going to be given to a family member for Christmas). I went through the same questions that you have, and many people suggested the rMBP 15 isn't that large or heavy. That's sort of true - but only when you compare it to other 15.4" laptops!

    However, compared to the MBA, the 15" rMBP is significantly larger and heavier. I don't expect to notice it so much in a back-pack full of other stuff, but when you hold the computers by themselves, there's a big difference.

    I often get out my laptop half a dozen times during my daily journey, and the MBA is small and light-enough to whip it out for a couple of minutes work whilst waiting at the station. I think the larger rMBP would be a bit more unwieldy sitting on your lap, and is generally a larger beast to get in and out of a bag. These are not "big issues", just a feeling.

    If you just carry your computer to a place of work, sit it on a desk for a few hours, and then pack it up, then I'd have no problem in recommending the larger computer. If you need to carry it around and use it in multiple locations during the day (moving to meeting rooms, coffee shops, use in taxis etc.), then I think the smaller computer may be a better fit.

    My 2 cents from 3 days of rMBP ownership!

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