Hi MacRumors-ites: I'm aware this isn't the only thread on this general topic, but I'd like to get your input on this particular situation. I'm deciding between getting a retina MBP with 16 GB RAM and a 2.3Ghz CPU (unless someone tells me otherwise) and either 512 GB or 1 TB. I'm a grad student and am purchasing because my last tea spill became the last straw in my long haul with my current old mac (a 2007 2.4 C2D MBP). I've taxed my current machine's small and by today's standards slow 150GB hard drive with about 200 GB of data (much of it now on a Time Capsule) and space was my main problem to deal with with this mac (the reason I got the Time Capsule). I want to move my 200GB of material (70 GB itunes, 40 GB aperture, apps and work/school documents for the rest) straight onto my new machine and have room to "grow" in the next few years: I photograph and store entire 500pg/historical books to photocopy them making my own digital archives on a weekly basis; I plan to get more into photography as a hobby as well; I want to keep the option of doing semi-professional ("grad school quality") documentaries open--but I don't actually do those yet. As a student/academic I do a lot of long 2-400 pg writing/theses and I like to be able to have 1 million internet tabs and PDF books/papers (some of them very cumbersome, poorly digitized 1-200MB "text" files) open along with my aperture library with my photo-archived books so I can juxtapose many different materials and ultimately combine them into what I write. I'm worried that after transferring my material on day 1, though close to 300GB will be free, I might not have much real room to work with if I want to maintain the laptop's optimal/robust performance. Just how much of a SSD do you need to keep free for a machine like this to run optimally/do what I want it to? How much room will I really have to work with/grow into from day 1 if I use 200GB of the 512? And of the 1 TB? OTOH, given that I've taken a while to fill 200GB, though I don't know what the future will bring and how having better tools might encourage me to do more cool things requiring more space, I doubt I'll really fill the 1TB. I really wish there were a 750GB option! To me a computer is my work equipment and it isn't something to skimp on...but there does seem a point at which one can overdo it, and the price of this model with 1TB does seem a little "out of range" for many students. I can guiltily pay for the TB if I need it, but the question is...do I? Also, I've tended to like to buy decent machines and try to make them last as long as possible. Is it reasonable to expect a machine like this to last 3-4 years running more or less optimally with a TB of space as opposed to 512GB? Is it just wiser to buy a 512 GB machine and save my pennies for buying a new machine a little earlier down the line? I'm honestly a little fed up with Apple because of how badly my current machine declined (before the spill)...even at about 3.5 years of use it was giving me serious issues, though I could and did hold out on upgrading since their updates didn't seem revolutionary to me. When I look at my current machine, I feel like it is silly to spend so much on something that will just end up more or less inoperable in a crate in the basement when its "obsolete" by the file-size and format and software standards of tomorrow. Thanks for reading (I know this was long); I look forward to hearing your input/experience with this sort of issue. Please advise!