I know this is such a common question but... (which MBP to buy)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Cradle6, Jul 30, 2011.

  1. Cradle6, Jul 30, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2011

    Cradle6 macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2011
    I need help deciding which Mac to buy.

    I'm going to college next month and have decided to buy a MacBook Pro. My problem is: which one? My current laptop is an ancient compaq, so this will be a big upgrade either way.

    I'm stuck between the 13" and 15" models.

    I'm going to use the machine for web, streaming video, some video/photo editing, and maybe some light gaming.

    I don't really mind having more carrying around more physical weight for a better computer, but the high price jump from 13 to 15 ($600) is a turn off, although not completely undoable if necessary.

    I guess the primary draw of the 15 for me is the dGPU/AMD graphics chip and slightly bigger screen size, but is it really that necessary for me? Also I've heard the dGPU will drain battery faster when it's active, which obviously is not good at university.

    Also what's the screen resolution difference between the two models? Will I notice a difference when streaming video?

    Finally, my university's apple store has a deal going where you can get a hard drive upgrade to 1 TB and a RAM upgrade to 8 GB for $219. Is that worth it?

    Anyway, sorry for asking such a redundant question, but any help is totally appreciated. :)

    Edit: Also, should I possibly be thinking about buying a refurbished machine?
  2. Epic Xbox Revie macrumors 6502a

    Epic Xbox Revie

    Jun 15, 2010
    Washington, D.C.
    Have you seen them in person? Check them both out at an Apple Store if you can.
  3. Cradle6 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2011
    I'm at one right now actually. But it's different than actually owning one for a few months. Like I need to known if I should do that deal.
  4. ThirtyThr33 macrumors 6502


    Jun 13, 2011
    Boulder, Colorado
    Which one do you like better? It's pretty much all about preference. Some people will get all snobby and tell you everything the 13" CAN'T DO but in a lot of cases theyre being overdramatic. Yes there are spec differences and some specs are better than others but all MacBook Pros are pretty well rounded and will be able to do 99% or more of what you want.

    In my opinion I love the 13". It has a certain something that the 15" doesn't have in my opinion. Can't really put my finger on it though. But I like it :)
  5. lindstedt56 macrumors regular

    Jun 19, 2011
    The only thing I dont like about the 13 is the low res screen. You should get an Air if you are going 13 inch. I prefer 15 though.
  6. Oxonian3 macrumors regular

    Jul 13, 2011
    1.I think the 15" is a better buy.
    Why:personal prefernce pushes me to go for a bigger screen i'm actually going for a 17" at the moment.I am a student and had a 15" laptop was a breeze to carry around.The new GPUs can be controlled with gfxcardstatus application which can force it to use integrated or discrete for battery life and power respectively.I find the 15" to just be overall better than at 13" screen from 13.3 to 15.4 A WHOLE 2.1 INCHES.It's big in a physical point of view.

    Should you spend $200+Dollars for 8Gb ram+1TB HDD?
    My answer=Big no.
    8gb Ram can be found off newegg.com for $44 and a 1TB hdd off amazon $114.0 @ 7200RPM
    (User replacements are always better than 3rd party.)
  7. Kafka macrumors 6502

    Mar 10, 2011
    To me, the price difference between the 13 and the 15 is justifiable only if you actually need the extra power and GPU, if it's only for the bigger screen it's a waste. And it's HEAVY.
    Like I said in another post, I bought a 15", felt silly and returned it.
  8. Synergie macrumors 6502a

    Jan 15, 2011
    Halifax, Canada
    The decision is really up to you... but I have the 13" and I got it for portability... not be cause it was a money issue. If I got the 15" I doubt I'd be carrying it around with me as much. It's heavier... and you will notice that after a few days of lugging it around with you!

    As for streaming, surfing, occasional photo editing etc... the 13" is MORE than capable! Heck, a netbook would be capable for that so a 13" MBP is definitely a good choice.

    For mild gaming, still capable... and I have the 2009 version of the 13" MBP! I play Ryzom quite a bit and have no issues at all with the rendering etc.

    For college I'd go more portable... but that's me... the decision as I said is yours alone to make!
  9. Cradle6 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2011
    That is a very good point^

    So if I feel the need to do a little gaming, and when I do video editing, the 13" will be capable?
  10. Durious macrumors 6502

    Apr 11, 2008
    Calgary, Alberta
    Define light gaming, are you speaking in terms of I won't play them too often OR are you speaking in terms of casual games like bejewelled, angry birds, solitaire, etc.

    I.e. if your light gaming is to play Crysis 2 for an hour every few weeks than get the 15" but if it's for games without any sort of requirements (i.e. flash games) than it'll help our response.
  11. randomrazr macrumors 65816

    Jan 1, 2011
    is it worth the extra 350 dollars over the 15 base for the high end?
  12. fred88 macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2011
    how many threads are you going to ask this in?
  13. randomrazr macrumors 65816

    Jan 1, 2011
    did i ask for your opinion?

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