Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by CharlesDaniel, Jan 4, 2017.

  1. CharlesDaniel macrumors newbie

    Jan 4, 2017
    Hey guys,

    First time forum poster here just looking for some expert advice.

    I'm a long time apple user, imac 27, ipads, iphone's e.t.c however I'm looking to purchase a new macbook.
    I'm a web designer, coder, graphic designer (photoshop) , writer, product designer and run multiple businesses in this niche. I have spent a great deal of time looking over the various options and really cannot reach a decision.

    The laptop will be used to run the business while traveling, I want a 13.3" macbook, and the products I design are high end so the build quality needs to be spot on.

    I have roughly £1000 / $1230 to spend which leaves me with approximately 3 options.
    I should note that I will be likely buying from Ebay given the huge discount (approximately £200 saving).

    Option 1) I purchase a mid 2012 macbook pro, non retina, 2.5GHz, 13.3", i5, 4gb RAM, 500 GB HDD, 7 hour battery running Lion. Completely up gradable machine, I purchase and fit a 250/500 GB SSD hard drive as well as 16GB of RAM.

    Pro's = Super powerful machine, very fast, completely upgradable, cheap to fix, and a machine that is regarded as one one the best macbooks of all time. However,

    Cons = are that the screen is non retina, comparably short battery life, 5 year old machine, older graphics card, older processor, thicker, heavier

    Cost including upgrade = Approximately £1,000


    Option 2) I buy the 2015 Macbook Pro, 2.7GHz, 13.3", I5 processor, 8GB RAM, 128GB, Retina, 10 hours battery life, OSX, Yosemite.

    Pro's = New machine, flash storage build in, 10 hour battery life, lighter, thinner, retina screen. Faster processor, Could always buy an external hard drive if 128GB is not sufficient. However,

    Con's = Non upgradable, only 1 year warranty, if anything goes wrong I cannot fix myself as everything is soldered to the logic board, cannot upgrade, limited to 8GB RAM & 128 GB Hard drive.

    Option 3) As I am not a video editor, I could purchase Macbook Air, 1.6GHz, 13.3, i5, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, 12 hour battery.

    I have spent so much time agonizing over this as it is such a huge investment so would really appreciate some help with this, I know I mentioned travel, however I'm a big guy so the weight issue isn't really an issue for me to carry around.

    All 3 would cost approximately £1000, I cannot go above this, cannot take out the Apple care, so the options listed are my choices. Any assistance would be hugely appreciated.

    Many thanks in advance.
  2. halfbad macrumors member

    Apr 20, 2014
    Sensible options,

    I'm a big fan of the older Macs, but gonna say you should probably stay away from the 2012, since your spending the money to get partially to option 2, And if your travelling and do a lot of code, text heavy tasks, the retina screen is huge benefit. Also its' usb 2 which is a little long in the tooth if your doing time machine backups and file transfer. in addition I don't know how much longer it will be supported for but not as long as the other two.

    I'd say go for the new 2015 or the Air, but with the Air your not getting Retina screen either, and the speakers on the air compared to the new MBP are very weak, if that matters at all, but for portability it's the best between the 3.

    In the end I'd say you need to weigh out the power of the 2015 + Retina screen vs Air most portabtility ( they are lovely to travel with, don't underestimate that weight and form factor).

    Still some thinking but I hope I got you a step further.
  3. thesaint024 macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2016
    suspension waiting room
    If you can deal with 128gb SDD, then #2 for sure. Only you can answer how much space you need. I would say get the Air but the screen is borderline unusable after using a retina. If you need more hard drive space, then you'll have to get #1. All different options, but really dependent on your needs. All will do what you need, but #2 best option if you can deal with the SDD space.
  4. capathy21 macrumors 65816


    Jun 16, 2014
    Houston, Texas
    #2 is easily the winner. Display alone is reason enough to not go with option 1 or 3. The resolution on the mid 2012 is horrid and the TN panel of the Air is even worse. I just picked up a model identical to option 2 and I absolutely love it.
  5. duervo macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2011
    #2, but since you're buying on eBay, try to find one with more SSD storage if you can. Look for auctions, or listings where the seller takes offers (I had an offer accepted that dropped the asking price down by 25% over the holidays. I suspect the seller wanted the cash for gift shopping.)
  6. jerryk macrumors 68040

    Nov 3, 2011
    SF Bay Area
    I like #2, but am also wary of 128 GB being enough for graphical assets, tools, etc. associated with web work. So I would try to get a 2014/2015 rMBP with more than 128 GB.
  7. deany macrumors 68030


    Sep 16, 2012
    North Wales
    Option 2 The rMBP 2015 SSD is upgradable to 1TB but will void a warranty if its a non apple upgrade.
    These machines are awesome, get a no quibble returns guarantee to be sure yourself.
    Costco had them for approx £850 and amazon shade under £900
    Sept '15 hoping for sub £999 myself - soon.
  8. oneMadRssn macrumors 601


    Sep 8, 2011
    Boston, MA
    I would go with Option 2, but get 8GB RAM and 512GB SSD to start. Worrying about onboard storage later is a pain these days.

    I would also consider the 12" retina Macbook. The m5/512GB version can be found on ebay for decent prices, with AppleCare, and should suit all your needs easily. None of your uses are so computationally expensive such that a drastically more powerful CPU would help much.
  9. tubeexperience macrumors 68040

    Feb 17, 2016
  10. AppleSmack macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2010
    Option 4: buy a refurb from Apple, with Apple Care. Sure, Apple Care feels like a tax on top of your consumer rights, but you're paying for Apple to put things right so you can get back to work (and yes, this 'tax' pains me too).

    If you're running all these businesses on your laptop, don't cheap out. Put it down as a business expense, and you'll already be saving with the reduction in your corporation tax, and VAT offset if applicable.
    Spend the money, and get on with growing your business rather than agonising over £1k.
  11. CharlesDaniel thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 4, 2017
    Hey Guys, I just wanted to send a quick message to thank you all for your incredible responses. Learning that the 2015 model's SSD is up-gradable really closed the deal so I shall opt for that, Outstanding. Unbelievably decent of you all to take time out of your busy days to answer a question like this for me and help out someone you've never met. Very much appreciated. Absolutely phenomenal community. All the very best.

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