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rcappo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 14, 2010
295
72
I am shopping for a new MacBook…and it is getting complicated. But I wonder if there is something you wish that you would have bought now that you have used your laptop for a while? More RAM if 8GB is not enough? More than 512GB SSD? Screen size? Extra ports? Touch bar? Video camera resolution?

Now, I am an abuser of computers and push them to their limits. But the 14” or 16” MacBook Pro with an M2 chip isn’t out yet, and I am unwilling to wait if it is next October before they get released. There are a bunch of Black Friday sales coming up that mix things up too (Costco, Best Buy, Amazon, and Apple) including open box sales. The last time I bought a MacBook, I wanted it to last 10 years, and spent $3300 back in 2010. This time I might be more interested in getting a deal to last me until the 3nm laptops come out and I have more money to throw at Apple in a few years. But I don’t want a computer that will be slow with 500 tabs open on a browser, some video file exporting, and a bunch of apps open. I tested out an 8GB M2 MacBook today and it handled the swap memory better, but my 12 year old Mac has 8 GB of RAM and it is not close to enough. But the deals at Costco for the M2 chip machines all have 8 GB of RAM.

I know that I will have to buy a USB-C adapter to expand the number of USB ports regardless of which MacBook I get. I do have an external hard drive and DVD drive, along with a USB memory card reader, USB TV tuner, and 3D printer. I have a USB keyboard and mouse too. But I do need to attach this Laptop to a few different monitors via HDMI cable, and I only have the HDMI to HDMI cable right now.

So what would you change or go back and buy if you could with your MacBook, and what isn’t a big deal?
 

rcappo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 14, 2010
295
72

rcappo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 14, 2010
295
72
I guess I was able to crash the new M2 laptop by opening up just about every app and exporting some 4K video files…. But it was working well before that. It just ran out of the 8 GB of RAM way too fast and was doing a lot to keep it from maxing out by swapping to the SSD.
 

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mdhaus72

macrumors regular
Dec 29, 2018
133
189
I have a 16" MacBook Pro with an M1 Max chip, 32 GB of RAM and a 1 TB hard drive. I don't have any regrets. Upgrading to 64 GB of RAM was not worth the exorbitant cost, especially when the machine can always memory swap really quick if it needs to, thanks to the extremely fast speed of the internal hard drive.
 

russell_314

macrumors 601
Feb 10, 2019
4,886
6,841
USA
I guess I was able to crash the new M2 laptop by opening up just about every app and exporting some 4K video files…. But it was working well before that. It just ran out of the 8 GB of RAM way too fast and was doing a lot to keep it from maxing out by swapping to the SSD.
I think what you should focus on is what you actually do with the computer?

If that's just tinkering and benchmarks to test the limit of hardware as a hobby then I would strongly suggest going for a desktop PC instead of a Mac. You can get much higher configurations and much more customization for much less money. Also you can go for different operating systems like Linux and I've heard even macOS but I've never tested that.

If it's a specific workflow then try to figure out what people use with similar workflows. For example if you're editing video for YouTube then just try to find out what people use to edit video. Everything is going to need different stuff. For example editing video you might want a maxed out SSD but that would be a waste for most other things.

If I had to pick one thing that I've regretted not getting would be SSD capacity. There's nothing more aggravating than not having enough storage so then you have to offload files to an external drive. I think that fear causes me to overbuy in that area.
 

maflynn

Moderator emeritus
May 3, 2009
70,145
38,623
I'm generally content with my 14" and the decision to opt for the 14 over the 16" was sound and correct when I made it. My situation changed a bit and as of November 2022, the 16" would be a better fit. With that said, the 14" is a great machine and I don't have any regrets.

To answer the OP, no I don't wish I bought a different MBP, because I bought the one that best fit my needs and budget at the time. I'm content with my actions and purchase :)
 

Ifti

macrumors 68040
Dec 14, 2010
3,480
1,880
UK
I have the following:

M2 MacBook Air - 512GB SSD - 16GB RAM
Used for general day to day tasks. Completely happy with this.

M1 Max MacBook Pro 16 - 1TB SSD - 64GB RAM
Used mainly for editing with FCPX as my 'workhorse'
To be fair, for my projects the MacBook Air I have could probably do the job. But I had this system before the MBA, so just ended up keeping and use it as a 'desk system'.
Could have been fine with 32GB RAM as well.

Happy with my setup overall.
 

rcappo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 14, 2010
295
72
I'm generally content with my 14" and the decision to opt for the 14 over the 16" was sound and correct when I made it. My situation changed a bit and as of November 2022, the 16" would be a better fit. With that said, the 14" is a great machine and I don't have any regrets.

To answer the OP, no I don't wish I bought a different MBP, because I bought the one that best fit my needs and budget at the time. I'm content with my actions and purchase :)
Now I am curious. I have a 17” MacBook currently, but was leaning towards the 14”. I’m trying to think of any reason that I would ever need the 16” because it isn’t 4K resolution. My 17” one was a 1920x1080 or something match to my 1920x1080 external monitor in the past.
 
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russell_314

macrumors 601
Feb 10, 2019
4,886
6,841
USA
Now I am curious. I have a 17” MacBook currently, but was leaning towards the 14”. I’m trying to think of any reason that I would ever need the 16” because it isn’t 4K resolution. My 17” one was a 1920x1080 or something match to my 1920x1080 external monitor in the past.
If it all possible, I would go to the Apple Store and physically put hands on these computers. The 16” is going to have a lot more screen real estate but it’s going to be bigger to carry around. I personally like small laptops like the MacBook Air but if you’re coming from a 17” MacBook you may feel the 14” is way too small.

It’s really hard to figure this out without actually physically putting hands on it.
 
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pshufd

macrumors G3
Oct 24, 2013
8,532
13,499
New Hampshire
I bought the M1 Pro MacBook Pro 32/1 a year ago. I wanted to hook it up to multiple monitors so I should have went with the M1 Max but I recently bought a Mac Studio and use that for a desktop now. My current M1 Pro MacBook Pro 32/1 is perfect for me. 16 GB of RAM would not have been enough. 512 GB of SSD would have been enough but I have more headroom in playing with Virtual Machines, development and other things.

I am able to run all of my production on this laptop and still get all-day battery life so this thing is incredible. I do not think that 64 GB of RAM would have been useful. On the Mac Studio, yes, but not on the MacBook Pro, particularly since I'm not hooking up external monitors.
 

DaveEcc

macrumors newbie
Oct 17, 2022
4
8
Ottawa, ON, Canada
I have a base M1 Air (8/256), a base 14" M1 Pro MBP (16/512), and a base 16" M1 Pro MBP (16/512) (daughter's, mine, and wife's). I think 8GB was not enough, and if you're doing video 256GB is not going to be enough either, but other than the 8GB, I think we're all happy... but we're not really doing anything heavy with our machines either. I compile a few C files now and then, but nothing major. Wife mainly surfs the web with occasional Lightroom use.

You can see benchmarks on video export times. Use that to judge if you want an M1 Pro, M1 Max, or if the M2 Air would suit your needs well enough for now.

I'd recommend you get enough storage space to cover whatever active video project you have. You'll know what your space needs are more than anyone else. Then get external SSDs, or NAS storage, to cover longer term storage at more affordable prices. Bonus, this storage can be used by whatever machine you eventually upgrade to, or in the case of NAS, can be used by a second machine at the same time.

If you literally have 500 tabs, you may want more RAM. Check what you're currently using, add some padding to cover the fact that RAM is unified on the M chips, so your display will consume some space. If you use external monitors, those frame buffers will consume some more too. Throw on a bit more padding for future usage.

From that you should know which CPU, storage, and RAM you need... but which machine?

Every time I look at my wife's 16" I think the bigger display looks appealing, but every time I lift her 16" I'm glad I opted for the 14". But that's me. As others have said, it's best if you can physically poke at the machines and see which feels right to you.
 

hoo-man-b-ing

macrumors regular
Mar 13, 2022
116
97
I don’t know that I’ve ever regretted a computer purchase, mostly because I do my homework (and arguably a little too thoroughly) ahead of time.

Whether you get an M2 or M1-based MacBook Pro, I’m sure there are a ton of benchmarks and video reviews out there to help you make an informed decision for *your* workflow. Speaking of, any (productive) workflow that involves having 500 tabs open seems curious to me.
 

Fear12

macrumors member
Nov 21, 2020
35
15
US
I have a 2019 i9 and I feel like i got ripped off as it turns out the M chips were right around the corner.

My wife has an M1 Air and while my laptop is technically faster on paper her laptop is by far the more enjoyable one to use.
 
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Queen6

macrumors G3
@rcappo This
I think what you should focus on is what you actually do with the computer?
13" class Mac's always bought the base model unless more was needed. Used them for years for work purpose, never an issue with the use. They have never been faster. 15" I'd spec up more as had higher needs.

The Base M1 13" MBP/Air and M2's are fast notebooks that perform tremendously in real world use. Some need more screen real-estate, some need desktop performance in a portable. Apple offers this and more. If I needed a 14"/16" Pro or Max I'd get one I don't. As of now I want portability & extended battery life.

IMHO with Apple Silicon your better to purchase what you need for the demand at the time. I don't suggest they are more prone to failure; however, they will cost significantly more to repair in the event. M1 was massive step change, M2 an evolutionary upgrade, M3 we wait to see but. No doubt with AMD & Intel putting their foot on the gas, Apple will press equally hard.

If you want better more concise advice, suggest you outline the usage/workflow. As no doubt some have been there and done it and that could save you needless cost...

Q-6
 
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rcappo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 14, 2010
295
72
So I did quite a bit of hands on testing at the Apple Store and Costco about 5 times.

This one was curious though. The 14” M1 on the left has 16 GB of RAM, the 13” M2 on the right has 8 GB, but with the same programs running and what not, it seems like the 14” one uses more of the RAM.

And while I did buy the laptop with 8 GB because it was a better price. And I will just have to see if it was a good decision to save ~$400 ($1299+tax or $1699+tax) for just the increase in RAM to 16 GB. Since for some reason I couldn’t find a deal on those, plus Best Buy sold out of the M2’s with 16 GB Ram that were $150 off.

It is also the reason I ruled out the 14” and 16” at this point. They were quite a bit more money, and I would still need to buy some usb hubs, memory card readers, and such to add the ports I need when I am at home.

I am pretty sure that this new laptop will be all good.
 

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Queen6

macrumors G3
So I did quite a bit of hands on testing at the Apple Store and Costco about 5 times.

This one was curious though. The 14” M1 on the left has 16 GB of RAM, the 13” M2 on the right has 8 GB, but with the same programs running and what not, it seems like the 14” one uses more of that RAM.

And while I did buy the laptop with 8 GB because it was a better price. And I will just have to see if it was a good decision to save ~$400 ($1299+tax or $1699+tax) for just the increase in RAM to 16 GB. Since for some reason I couldn’t find a deal on those, plus Best Buy sold out of the M2’s with 16 GB Ram that were $150 off.

It is also the reason I ruled out the 14” and 16” at this point. They were quite a bit more money, and I would still need to buy some usb hubs, memory card readers, and such to add the ports I need when I am at home.

I am pretty sure that this new laptop will be all good.
Very much doubt you will have any issue. 8GB is a lot of RAM, those pushing 16/32 for average use are mostly talking nonsense. This W10 PC I'm on now has 32GB RAM, equally it runs complex engineering applications that can utilise that RAM.

My latest M1 MBP is the same just 8GB as that's enough and I don't feel the need to throw money at Apple that doesn't benefit me...

macOS will utilise all available RAM as the 14" has 16GB the OS will by default load more data. Whether the user utilises it is another matter, some will benefit, some will see no difference.

Q-6
 
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ihakim

macrumors regular
Jun 11, 2012
194
156
Stanford, CA
So I did quite a bit of hands on testing at the Apple Store and Costco about 5 times.

This one was curious though. The 14” M1 on the left has 16 GB of RAM, the 13” M2 on the right has 8 GB, but with the same programs running and what not, it seems like the 14” one uses more of the RAM.

And while I did buy the laptop with 8 GB because it was a better price. And I will just have to see if it was a good decision to save ~$400 ($1299+tax or $1699+tax) for just the increase in RAM to 16 GB. Since for some reason I couldn’t find a deal on those, plus Best Buy sold out of the M2’s with 16 GB Ram that were $150 off.

It is also the reason I ruled out the 14” and 16” at this point. They were quite a bit more money, and I would still need to buy some usb hubs, memory card readers, and such to add the ports I need when I am at home.

I am pretty sure that this new laptop will be all good.
The more RAM you have, the more your laptop will use. It's not an appropriate marker of your actual requirements vs. memory pressure. I have 64 GB of RAM and use 50+ GB in Lightroom but I would probably do just fine with 32 GB and it wouldn't effectively change my export speeds.
 

ndouglas

macrumors 6502
Jun 1, 2022
403
366
Good luck with your 13” purchase, if you got it at Costco then you probably know already you have close to 90 days vs. the 14 days from Apple to try it, so that’s good. I am curious how you will find the experience, after being used to a 17” laptop for so long! I was a 13” user for over 10 years because I couldn’t fathom spending so much to get 15” or bigger, but 2 years ago I got the 16” Macbook and I don’t see myself going smaller again, the screen space is just too useful and beneficial for me.
So to your thread title question, no, I have never regretted Macbook purchases, they’ve served me very well over the years, sounds like your 2010 one has also.
 
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GCC

macrumors newbie
Jan 23, 2021
20
6
I have a 2019 i9 and I feel like i got ripped off as it turns out the M chips were right around the corner.

My wife has an M1 Air and while my laptop is technically faster on paper her laptop is by far the more enjoyable one to use.
This is true. I had a 16” i9 sold like new as soon I tested a 13” M1 MBP 2020. Faster and no fan noise.
So happy with the M Chips bought a 16” M1 Max 64GB 3 weeks ago.
Very satisfied :)
 
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