Early 2013 vs Later 2013 rMBP 15". Help me select, please!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by antwormcity, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. antwormcity, Dec 11, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2013

    antwormcity macrumors newbie

    Feb 9, 2008
    I am in a big dilemma. Unable to decide which rMBP to get.

    I was thoroughly lost in the beginning, and considering 13 inch, but browsed through a lot of threads around here and figured i would need a 15" inch for programming tasks.

    Visited Apple store 2 times and spent a lot of time with the different notebooks and finally decided i need the 15 inch rMBP.

    Following is my usage scenario.

    1. CUDA programming (Nvidia card is a must).
    2. General programming in MATLAB, Python, OpenGL, etc.
    3. Photoshop Lightroom (amateur photography, I use my iMac for current editing), and this is not a huge roadblock whichever way I go.
    4. Dual boot with Windows (plan to use Visual Studio etc. for DirectX/Windows SDK development).
    5. I might use Xcode as well, but that is low on my priority list.

    I don't plan to store a lot of movies or music or image files on a long term basis on the MBP.

    My current iMac (bought new in March 2013) is perfect for all of these, but I figure too late that I need mobility to be more productive.

    I have the following two options.

    Late 2013
    rMBP 15" 16GB/512GB/Iris Pro + Nvidia 750M 2GB Video Memory -This is the $2600 model which is top of the line, and only one with Nvidia card. (Read about some Yellow/non-uniform screen issues).

    Early 2013:
    rMBP 15" 8GB/256GB/Intel HD4000 + Nvidia 650M 1 GB - I am getting this for about $1800 new from a trusted online store. (Image Burn in issue is gone hopefully in early 2013? Not sure)

    8 GB vs. 16GB
    256 GB for dual boot. Big enough?
    1GB Video card memory is probably enough

    I feel like I may not be a heavy user atleast in the beginning. Once I start delving more and more into the heavy duty programming projects in Cuda and OpenGL, I may feel the machine is slow for me. Hopefully the older machine would be good enough to keep up with the requirements for at least a couple of years. :confused:

    Ivy Bridge vs. Haswell is not a huge concern. I have read a lot of benchmarks etc. and I don't feel I will take any performance hit except 1 additional hour of battery life. Latest Open GL versions for programming seem to be good on both HD4000 and Iris Pro.

    Should I go more affordable right now and save up while I still enjoy a decent machine or go all out for the latest/greatest rMBP?

    I can put in the saving for the next computer or something else perhaps. OR will I regret not getting the best system out there based on my needs.

    Thanks a lot guys. I really appreciate any inputs from fellow programmers and rMBP users. :)
  2. blooperz macrumors 6502

    Dec 10, 2013
    I went to the apple store and got carried away and bought the late 2013 15 incher because I like shiny new toys XD..love it to death but probably overkill for my needs...i think anyone would be well served by the early 2013 model, so much so that I doubt they would notice any real difference except in battery life. They are both excellent machines. A word of caution from my experience with bootcamp (windows 7...have not testes windows 8)..I alotted 100 gigs to the partition and after installing windows and an 8 gig program I only had 50 gigs left...not sure off the top of my head if I disabled the hibernation file or not. so depending on your needs you may find yourself needing more than 256 gigs...the late 2013 comes with a minimum 512 if you are getting the model with the nvidia card if I'm not mistaken
  3. B's iPhone macrumors regular

    B's iPhone

    Jul 9, 2008
    Where it's cold
    Go somewhere in the middle ($2,400) by using the education discount to get the late 2013 15" with 16GB RAM and 512GB of storage.
    It's a beast, will do all you want and solves your dilemma.

    (edited for price)
  4. sonyisawesome macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2012
    Definitely go for the early 2013 15" rmbp.

    You save around 500 bucks (places like ebay and macmall has them for $1799) and the model isn't all that different from the late 2013 15" model when it comes to graphical power, since 750M is just an overclocked version of 650M.

    And what do you do with the money by saving 500 bucks? Go buy either Xbox One or PS4. Your gaming dilemma has been solved.
  5. antwormcity thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 9, 2008
    haha, yeah good point.

    I am not much into gaming, my only requirement with this laptop will be programming some heavy duty stuff. 8 GB RAM and Bootcamp on a 256GB makes me more concerned that's all. If that is going to be less likely of an issue perhaps I have my answer.

    As blooperz points out, this may be a concern with Win7 and OSX mavericks installed together. I hear a hard drive upgrade is not worth the pain on the rMBPs.

    Trying to see some more light, still big time confused..haha
  6. sonyisawesome macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2012
    I've never heard that Boot camp is RAM intensive so far.

    Since Boot camp is a boot manager, allowing you to boot from two or more separate partitions on the hard drive.

    So far, the only people who are in need of 16GB or more are the people who are into heavy-video editing and photography.
  7. antwormcity thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 9, 2008
    I was more concerned about free hard disk space on 256GB SSD for OSX, if I allocate 100GB to Windows partition. Not sure how virtual memory is managed by OSX Mavericks. Windows can be pretty laggy (experience from a Win7 workstation at office), if disk space is low.

    I agree about the 16GB part though. I think I will bite the bullet and get the older one. Seems more value for money, and I can't future proof myself anyway. :)

    Thanks guys!
  8. sonyisawesome macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2012
    Late 2013 15" rmbp isn't even considered as an upgrade to previous model anyway. Fact that the "new" model is missing a dedicated gpu for the sake of battery hour makes no sense to some of us. Thunderbolt 2? Meaningless unless you are planning to hook up your rmbp to an external monitor frequently.
  9. antwormcity, Dec 12, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2013

    antwormcity thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 9, 2008
    True. They decided to just get away with Iris Pro and left the dedicated card in only the top of the line notebook.

    650M vs 750M is not that much a difference either, as mentioned earlier.

    No plans to use Thunderbolt 2 :)

    Thanks sonyisawesome! I know you and probably others have the latest and greatest rMBP, but its good to hear some practical advice to help make a decision.

    I placed an order at MacMall. $1749 for the Early 2013 model. Not going to look back. Hopefully the screen has no issues.

    Appreciate the help! :cool:
  10. sonyisawesome macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2012
    Just make sure the laptop you are ordering is a brand new. Not refurbished. I dont know if Macmall sells left over unopened last model or if they are refurbished.
  11. antwormcity thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 9, 2008
    Good point. I would hate to get an open box or refurb one. Looks like it is new. Here is the link just in case I may not have noticed even after all the checks :)

  12. sonyisawesome macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2012

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