Help me decide! 13in vs 15in

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by beaverbaseball, May 30, 2010.

  1. beaverbaseball macrumors newbie

    May 30, 2010
    I'm getting ready to purchase my first ever mac laptop in the next week or so...I just cannot make up my mind what to go with tho...I mainly will be using the computer for colleges and I take about 2 online courses each semester. So I spend alot of time using my computer writing papers and researching stuff online. I was just wondering how you all like the 13in compared to the 15in? It just seems to me that the 13inch is a little to small. But price is also a issue considering the 15in is so much more expensive. I am planning on using this computer for the next 3 or 4 years atleast so I would like to get something very realiable.

    As of now these are the 3 i'm trying to choose between:

    13in Macbook pro:
    Intel Core 2 Duo
    4GB Memory
    250GB hard drive1
    SD card slot
    Built-in battery (10 hours)
    NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics

    Price: $1099 after education discount

    15in REFURBISED macbook pro
    2.53 ghz
    15.4-inch LED-backlit antiglare widescreen display
    4GB memory
    250GB hard drive
    8x SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    SD card slot
    Built-in 7-hour battery
    NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics
    Illuminated keyboard

    Price: $1,399

    15in Macbook pro
    Intel core i5
    320 hard drive
    intel hd graphics
    sd card slot
    nvidea geforce gt330m with 256mb

    Price: $1,699 with education discount

    Obvious I would love to go with the 15in with the i5 processor but a extra $600 is alot of money for me right now...But if its worth it in the long run I'm willing to spend it...Please let me know your opinions!
  2. aiqw9182 macrumors 65816

    Apr 22, 2010
    The 13" will be fine for your needs and will also provide better battery life and portability for college.
  3. mugtastic macrumors regular


    Jun 22, 2006
    i've considering this choice as well - i was thinking about upgrading to a bigger faster notebook.

    i'd like a boost in performance and if i bother to upgrade i'd probably go for a new 15" - the problem is that my 13" doesn't feel too small.

    i think the main factor with screen size (other than the portability) is how you use that screen real estate.

    if you like to have several apps open in the same screen i imagine the 13" would feel more cramped, but i mostly use 1 app per "spaces" screen, so i can't justify the extra bulk and cost.
  4. csjo00 macrumors regular

    May 17, 2010
    I too was deciding on which one to get. I ended up getting the 13" and I personally don't think I could've gotten any larger screen. It just would've been too much to carry around. It runs very nicely. Then again I upgraded from a Dell Desktop with a Pentium 4 processor, so this is a huuuuuge upgrade.

    Hope i helped.
  5. beaverbaseball thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 30, 2010
    Thanks for the replies! I'm also planning on running windows along with snow leopard..How will this effect the performance if I go with the 13in?
  6. aiqw9182 macrumors 65816

    Apr 22, 2010
    As in Windows in a virtual machine? It really all depends on how much RAM you have, which all of the machines you listed above have the same amount.
  7. HuggyLowDown macrumors regular


    Feb 14, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    I had the same problem as you yesterday. I couldn't decide between the 13" and 15". With the Back To School Promotion and discount, I got the best deal I could find. I picked the base model 13". The 13" may look small in the Apple store but once you open it and start using it, you realize its the perfect size. I got what I paid for. It's fast enough, and switching between Windows and OSX is simple and fast. The battery lasts very long too. So it's great for portability and carrying it around campus. Go for it, just buy the 13". You'll love it.
  8. NicoleRichie macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2007
    13 is great, but I think if I were to do it again, I would go for the 15 with the i5. Do you need it... most likely not, but you will really like the i5.
  9. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    I say go for the 13". $600 is a lot for a college student, and the 13 is a great machine. It is light, easy to carry, has great battery life, and is still very capable. As far as running windows, mine runs it great with bootcamp, runs it just like any hp, dell, etc. would run it. I would definitely need more RAM to do a virtual machine though, 2 gigs can get a little cramped multitasking with one OS, but the new 13s have 4, so that is nothing to worry about. Save yourself the extra cash for books and enjoy your MBP :)

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