Higher-specs 13" or lower-specs 15" MBP

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by denigmatism, Jun 11, 2012.

  1. denigmatism macrumors newbie

    Jun 11, 2012
    Hey guys, I am having a dilemma choosing between the higher-specs 13" or lower-specs 15" MBP which just came out.

    I will primarily use it for programming for school, and for post processing photos in Adobe Lightroom. For hobbies, I use Photoshop more than anything else for web design and photos.

    As such, i am unsure if the 13" (higher specs) would meet my requirements. It has 4GB more ram, better processor but is running on Intel 4000 graphics. On the other hand, the pricier 15" has the GT650 and the screen size, with less ram and processor.

    I would greatly appreciate your opinions in helping me with my choice!
  2. Apple2000 macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2011
    The processor in the fifteen inch model is definitely faster, as it is quad core as opposed to the dual core in the thirteen inch. Because ram is user upgradable for very relatively cheap, I would suggest the fifteen inch model.
  3. denigmatism thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 11, 2012
    That is certainly something i havent considered. But between the new 15in which boasts ivy bridge and the GT650, and the 2011 refurbished models (frankly, much cheaper and for the same price, i could get one with better specs), which would you recommend?
  4. Apple2000 macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2011
    If you are on a budget, this is a great model to pick. It is refurbished, but should be good as new and comes with a full warranty from apple.


    It will save you a good $450. The processor difference is negligible, and the 650m will only benefit you if you game often.
  5. macrominnie macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2010
    I agree with this post. The 2011 low end 15" MBP refurbs are a better value, in terms of processing power and screen real estate. The Feb 2011 refurb models are the best value, when they appear. (The bump between the Feb & Oct 2011 models was small.)

    For the uses described, the 2011 refurb lower end 13" MBP & MBA's would probably be fine, especially if you've been using something older for the same tasks. You could get either for less than $1000. If the option of more horsepower is important, go for the 15". The refurbs will hold their value better, since they've already depreciated a bit.

    Reasons to get the 2012 13" would be USB 3.0 (if you do large local data transfers/backups and need a bargain [non-Thunderbolt] solution) & the Back to School $100 iTunes store credit over the summer.

    For a rough comparison between dual and quad core performance in the 2011 & 2012 models, see this link:


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