HELP! i don't know which macbook to buy

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Savapple, Oct 23, 2012.

  1. Savapple macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    #1
    I have chosen 2 configurations- Retina 13" Pro and Macbook Air, both the same price (using my student discount). I will be using it for Web browsing, light gaming, and some graphic design on photoshop and illustrator.
    Thanks for your help!
     

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  2. mankar4 macrumors 6502a

    mankar4

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #2
    Go with the retina. It has a faster processor, a better screen, and is only .6lbs heavier. The graphics will be better too because the MBA uses an ULV chip. The retina should last you though college.
     
  3. slumpey326 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    Location:
    Florida
    #3
    In the same boat, with my corporate discount both come out to the exact same price, $1597 USD.

    ----------

    Is the ULV chip that bad compared to the macbook pro chip.
     
  4. rmwebs macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #4
    Suckes doesn't it! :p

    I'm in a similar situation. Want to power 2 external displays, but no idea which model to get now - trying to work out the most cost effective method by writing down costs of it all...it's all so marginal tho!
     
  5. Savapple thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    #5
    I'm starting to think I should go with the retina, the only downside is the flash storage will be half and I won't be able to afford the extra £235 for the upgrade.
    Is there much difference between the ULV chip and the one in the retina pro?
     
  6. slumpey326 macrumors 6502

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    Jun 18, 2010
    Location:
    Florida
    #6
    I think the deciding factor is going to come down to the SSD.
     
  7. rmwebs macrumors 68040

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    Apr 6, 2007
    #7
    I ended up (just now) buying the 15" retina. The 13" retina really is very poor value for money.
     
  8. Savapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 23, 2012
    #8
    I personally cannot afford the 15" and don't think it's very portable especially as I will be carrying it around collage. May I ask why you think the 13" is poor value for money?
     
  9. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #9

    It you think a 15" Retina bad, try a 17" MBP or other 17" laptop. :eek:


    Seriously, we just back from a 2 week trip and my wife carried her rMBP everywhere. If she can do that at 65+, a student should have no problem.
     
  10. Savapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 23, 2012
    #10
    I suppose it won't be that bad considering how light it is but I still can't afford it :(
     
  11. Rizzm macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
    #11
    I'd say go with the Air if you need something now. If you can wait, then see what the 2013 MBP has to offer. I hear it'll be a doozy.
     
  12. rmwebs macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #12
    I'll attache a screenshot of the comparison just to help out, but basically, the price difference (for me) was £283.20 - (lets call it £280 for simplicity's sake)

    So for that extra £280, you're getting:

    - A dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M 1GB GPU (in addition to the Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics), capable of powering three external displays (the 4000 can only do two, and seems to struggle on occasion)

    - A 2.3Ghz Quad-Core i7, with Turbo Boost to 3.3Ghz (compared to a 2.5Ghz Dual-Core i5 with Turbo Boost to 3.1Ghz) - This will allow for much better performance with the likes of video conversion, software compiling, etc

    - Double the SSD (256GB SSD on the 15", and 128GB on the 13")

    - Higher resolution (not really a pro however, but notable if you like having a fair amount of screen real estate)

    After writing this, it has to be said that people buying the 13" rMBP seemingly have no reason other than for the retina display. The 13" Air would surely be a much better choice if you're after a 13" Mac. Sure, it's using a slower CPU, but if you need a powerful CPU, you'll be either gaming or using pro apps, at which point the 15" makes more sense due to its GPU.

    If its any help, I'm coming from a 2011 11" Air - I've played Portal 2 on it with no problem, I've used Xcode for iOS dev, done some light compiling - it handles all of it fine. The 11" and 13" air's are great machines and theres virtually no difference between them other than 0.1 of a Ghz and the screen size.

    Go with the 13" air - it's a better option (based on your needs) than the 13" rMBP.
     
  13. Savapple thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    #13
    Thanks for your help! I'll take what you said into account :)
     
  14. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

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    Aug 26, 2009
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    Americas
  15. mankar4 macrumors 6502a

    mankar4

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #15
    There is no question that the pricing of the 13" makes the 15" look like a better value. But the real question is "Whats the best apple laptop I can get for my needs and budget" For you, sounds like the air vs 13 retina is your budget. Your needs are met by both, probably a little bit better by the retina. Honestly, when I was in college, I lugged a 15" MBP around with me and wished very often that I had gotten a 13" model.

    Now I have an 2012 Air, which is great. But I decided to give the air to my wife and get a 13 retina for myself. I know that the 15" is a better value, but I need a smaller, more portable machine, and I love the retina screen, so I was happy to buy the 13" retina. It was a shock at first with the contrast with the 15" but once I got it into my head that what I needed was more important than the value of the object, it was easy to pick the retina.
     

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