For College: Macbook Air, Macbook Pro, or Macbook Pro Retina

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by djohnsonbp13, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. djohnsonbp13 macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2012
    I'll be going to college next fall and I'm trying to decide what computer to buy. Right now I have a Macbook from 2008 that is slowly dying. My parents are going to buy me the new computer so money is still important but it isn't a deciding factor. I am just a typical computer user and I plan on studying statistics, economics, international relations, or public health, so nothing super computer heavy. I was really excited for Apple to release the 13" Retina Macbook Pro but after reading through the forums here, I'm not sure if that's the computer I want to get. I'm debating between a maxed out 13" Macbook Air, maxed out 13" Macbook Pro, or a mildly upgraded 13" Retina Macbook Pro. I want the computer to be functional and last me at least six years like my current computer has, but I'm not tech savvy enough to know what sorts of specs that means. I am taking weight into consideration because I will be carrying my computer around a lot. Any sort of advice would be wonderful. Thanks!
  2. toothache macrumors member

    Dec 18, 2011
    If I had a chance to buy a mac again, I will go Refurbished MacBook Air 1.8GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 with 256ssd & 4gb memory ($1269) + apple care from bhphotovideo ($190). It should last you long and it will be very portable. Sure, screen is nice on the MBP and rMBP but I don't think it's the best choice for its value. IMHO MBP 13 is the worst choice from the macbook line currently. Bulky, not very portable also not a performance house.
  3. Prof. macrumors 601


    Aug 17, 2007
    If your family can afford it, I'd go with a 13" MBA with 8GB RAM and 256/512 HD
  4. MattZani macrumors 68030


    Apr 20, 2008
  5. njean777 macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2009
    Really I would suggest the cMBP if you want it to last the longest amount of time. But even then I would suggest the 15in if you want it to last for 6 years. But if you must stay with the 13in then the cMBP i7 model is the one I would be looking at. The Retina is not really ready for prime time imo. The specs are laughable and for the price you can get a fully upgraded 13in cMBP and put your own SSD in it for cheaper. The air is a good choice, but lasting 6 years? I dont think it will last that long without slowing down considerably. But if you stick with the air then upgrade the ram and SSD so it will last awhile.

    If you really want the retina though I would buy the 15in as it will last a good while.
  6. Naimfan Suspended


    Jan 15, 2003
    Get the i5 MBP and upgrade the RAM and HD on your own - faster than any Air, significantly less than the retina.

    Or, alternatively, since you're not going to school until next fall, wait for the next iteration and choose from one of them - perhaps the retina won't be the complete rip-off it is right now.
  7. Chedd macrumors member

    Aug 22, 2012
    2012 Ultimate MBA. My significant other got one last month and that thing is already much faster than my 2009 15" MBP. And... It's super light. When we travel or go on day trips, I have her bring hers and leave mine at home.
  8. iDutchman macrumors 6502a

    May 9, 2010
    Amsterdam, NL
    That's because you must put an SSD and 8GB RAM in that MBP! I'll fly! Can all be done with sufficient storage for less than 200 US Dollars.
  9. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    Agreed. The current 13" i5 MBP can be had for about $1000 if you look around. Take the money you save from there and pick up a 512GB Samsung 830 and 16GB of RAM. You'll have a great setup for about $400-500 less than the 13" rMBP that has a 256GB SSD and 8GB of RAM.

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