Helping out my sister

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by iFanaddic, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. iFanaddic, Aug 23, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2015

    iFanaddic macrumors 6502a

    iFanaddic

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Montréal, Canada
    #1
    Shopping around for my little sister who's going back to college, being more of a software guy I'm really out of the loop when it comes to hardware. I bought an macbook in late 2008 (first aluminum) I ended up adding-on a whole bunch of options on my computer and got my self a power machine, which I probably didn't need at the time.. The logic behind this was that it would "age better", I didn't want to be left out of the loop after 2-3 years because it couldn't keep up with new OS, and it seems to have worked (typing this on the same macbook running El Capitan beta) I'm not sure I the base model sold that year can run as smoothly as mine today..

    With that being said my sister is starting college and she wants to do something similar, she wants to get a very good machine, one that will age well through time. She's planning to keep this computer for 8-10 years if possible. Now without considering what's user replaceable (Updated nothing seems to be user replaceable on this machine) what would be the optimal set up?

    2.7GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz
    OR
    2.9GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz
    OR
    3.1GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.4GHz

    8GB 1866MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM
    OR
    16GB 1866MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM

    FYI She doesn't need the computer for anything more than regular usage, word processing and stuff like that, but we do want to invest her money were it matters most.

    *************************​
    UPDATE

    Looking around Apples website.. Are MacBooks today still being sent with 128GB of storage for a +1500 Canadian $? That seems a bit ludicrous! I was gonna set her up with at least 512GB.. I guess that limits our options greatly. Am I missing anything?
     
  2. cruisin macrumors 6502a

    cruisin

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2014
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    The CPU is a non-issue. Unless she regularly uses over (for example) 50%, then it doesn't matter what CPU she gets as she will never use all that much even with later OS versions. This doesn't apply if she plans to do heavier work down the line.

    The Air comes with 4 GB standard and it is supposed to be fine for the next few years. Even if they eventually bump it to 8 GB, then for light usage 8 GB is fine for many years. For light usage you will be ok.

    The real issue is the other features like newer bluetooth, WiFi, force click trackpads, etc.

    Maybe spend a bit on more storage?

    The weak CDN/USD ratio is whats responsible for the price. Maybe look at the official refurbished section and save that way? They are the same as the new models but come in a brown box. http://www.apple.com/ca/shop/browse/home/specialdeals/mac
     
  3. iFanaddic thread starter macrumors 6502a

    iFanaddic

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Montréal, Canada
    #3
    Thanks that helps a lot, I think I may be leaning toward de 13'' MB pro with retina display considering it has an SD Slot. She'd take the base model with 128gb and put in another 128gb. How does that sound?

    Hardware
    • 2.7GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz
    • 8GB 1866MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM
    • 128GB PCIe-based Flash Storage
    • Intel Iris Graphics 6100
     
  4. cruisin macrumors 6502a

    cruisin

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2014
    Location:
    Canada
    #4
  5. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #5
    As stated she won't need a faster processor unless she's into gaming or video production. I consider 8gb to be a minimum for memory if she wants it to last many years. Disk space is hard to predict, some are fine with 128gb but I consider 512 the minimum for me. The items that can really eat up disk space are music, photos, and video. If there is any interest there then consider more disk space.

    One accessory to add is at least one external drive for backup with time machine and make sure she uses it regularly. Too many stories here of people trying to recover systems where they have no backup.
     
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #6
    Just a quick note, never expect any computer to last 8-10 years. Even a top of the range workstation. As for laptops anything over 5 years is very good. Of course computers can last this long and often do but expecting it is ridiculous, expecially for a mobile device that will be thrown into a bag and dragged round college day in day out.

    Electronics fail and they can fail at any time, once you are past your warranty period you are basically in the can fail anytime and it may well be too expensive to make it worth fixing situation.
     
  7. LxHunter, Aug 24, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2015

    LxHunter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    #7
  8. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #8
    Hm.

    To be honest, I would hold off buying the MB for now. Reading about it, it very much reminds me of the MBA when that first came out - basically, a gorgeous machine with a fabulous form factor but both under powered and overpriced for what they were offering.

    My take on it is that the MB will improve hugely over the next three or four generations as Apple work how what to do with it, where it sits in their line up, and how to maximise its potential. As of now, it is still very much a 'work in progress'. Personally, i wouldn't touch it for another year or two; there isn't enough (running screen aside, and terrific form factor) to justify the expense.

    At the moment, for your money, the MBA offers the best value in terms of specs, reliability, and a tried-and-tested computer. I have a 2013 MBA (13", 8 GB RAM, 512 SSD, Core i7) and it is easily the best computer I have ever had.

    It s fast, powerful, incredibly portable, has terrific batter life and a lovely form factor. Granted, the screen is no longer the best in its class (though it was for a very long time), as the retina screen is far superior. However, my priority was portability, reliability, great battery life with an fast and spacious memory.
     

Share This Page