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Seahawks101

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 4, 2016
5
0
hi,

I'm going to school in the fall and need a laptop for that first week of September no matter what. In the event Apple does not release a new MacBook Pro, which is likely, is the current 13" MacBook Pro retina still a good purchase versus everything out there. Now I did want a MacBook and thought my timing would be perfect if Apple released a new laptop... However how does that current one stack up against let's say... The dell xps, zen book, hp spectre?

What would you guys buy or do?
 
Last edited:

matt2053

macrumors 6502a
Jul 8, 2012
553
102
The answer is different whether you are talking about the 13" or the 15". The 13" model was updated last year with Broadwell and new display with new color gamut. The 15" did not get these updates, it's still on Haswell.
 

Seahawks101

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 4, 2016
5
0
The answer is different whether you are talking about the 13" or the 15". The 13" model was updated last year with Broadwell and new display with new color gamut. The 15" did not get these updates, it's still on Haswell.

Sorry should have been more clear, I'm talking about that 13" one with retina. Post has been edited.

So the MBP 13" retina vs everything else.
 

matt2053

macrumors 6502a
Jul 8, 2012
553
102
Sorry should have been more clear, I'm talking about that 13" one with retina. Post has been edited.

So the MBP 13" retina vs everything else.

In that case my opinion is that the 2015 rMBP 13" is the best computer you can buy right now. And maybe when 2016 model is released it will become 2nd best computer you can buy :)
 

xlii

macrumors 68000
Sep 19, 2006
1,866
121
Millis, Massachusetts
Do you have a machine you could use in a pinch? In 2006 my daughter used her high school iBook starting college until the new Macbookpros came out in November.
 

Seahawks101

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 4, 2016
5
0
Do you have a machine you could use in a pinch? In 2006 my daughter used her high school iBook starting college until the new Macbookpros came out in November.

Unfortunately I don't own a laptop, I've been using a desktop. I do have an iPad though. However I feel a laptop is more suited to start university in September
 

jerryk

Contributor
Nov 3, 2011
7,273
4,105
SF Bay Area
hi,

I'm going to school in the fall and need a laptop for that first week of September no matter what. In the event Apple does not release a new MacBook Pro, which is likely, is the current 13" MacBook Pro retina still a good purchase versus everything out there. Now I did want a MacBook and thought my timing would be perfect if Apple released a new laptop... However how does that current one stack up against let's say... The dell xps, zen book, hp spectre?

What would you guys buy or do?

The Macbook Pros are behind the times a bit because they are not running Skylake processors, but they are still good machines. If money is an issue, Apple offers student discounts, and also sells refurbished models which IMHO are great values.

With that said, the Dell XPS 13 is very impressive. Smaller, lighter and faster (in certain configurations) than the MacBook Pro 13 and you can easily install a larger SSD to increase storage. Apple uses a proprietary SSD module that is very expensive to upgrade.

The bigger question is what OS do you want to use. I switch daily between Windows 10, OSX, and Linux. They all do about the same thing, so it is more a preference than anything else.
 
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smelly cat

macrumors regular
Apr 17, 2010
133
55
For me and my needs, the MacBook Pro is the superior computer, even without the Skylake update.

1) The MacBook Pro runs OS X and Windows; competitors only run Windows.
2) The performance difference between Haswell/Broadwell vs. Skylake is not tremendous. This is not like when Intel upgraded from the Pentium 4/Pentium D to Core 2 Duo. Now that was an upgrade!
 
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Seahawks101

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 4, 2016
5
0
Thanks guys. I'm hoping with the new MacBook coming out it will drop the price of the current one maybe...? Anyone have any facts when a newer model came in how much Apple lowered the cost of the current one?
 

idunn

macrumors 6502a
Jan 12, 2008
500
400
Likely not a significant price discount, or as much saved by purchasing a decent refurbished unit.

Seriously consider the later.

As for alternative brands, only entertain the notion if willing to use an operating system other than OSX.

But first consider what you need versus desire. With any luck the new MacBook Pro models will offer a long awaited redesign and some decided advantages. But at a premium cost. With whatever the new may be, existing Mac laptops still quite capable.

Begin with how much horsepower you'll want. If heavy computation then naught but a maxed out 13" MacBook Pro will do, and despite the additional weight and bulk, really a 15". On the other end of that equation, if more the basics and email (and no serious gaming), then a MacBook just for its light weight would be worth considering.

Whatever else, you'll quickly appreciate the relative merits of whatever you're lugging around campus.

An existing 13" MacBook Pro hits the sweet spot for many in size, weight, power and cost. For all that a new MacBook Pro might be, those currently on offer are good solid computers.

And if tempted by that forthcoming then realize that best case scenario is delivery of same this summer. But possibly not until late autumn or near year's end. With the possibility they may prove a disappointment from that wished when unveiled.

In the interim you might well consider a refurbished MacBook or MacBook Pro. An excellent option. A good price on a like-new laptop. One that will meet your needs if not every desire. Either a MacBook or less than maxed out 13" MacBook Pro can be had in the range of $1,000.

With money saved towards purchase of something new and shiny later.
 

itsamacthing

macrumors 6502a
Sep 26, 2011
889
500
Bangkok
Thanks guys. I'm hoping with the new MacBook coming out it will drop the price of the current one maybe...? Anyone have any facts when a newer model came in how much Apple lowered the cost of the current one?

I think Apple Pro notebooks are 3 years old.. I wouldn't give Apple the compliment by buying from them. Suggest you look at a Dell XPS or Precision. You will need a lot of excel, word and they run terrible on the OSX.. Slow and lag. Best thing about OSX these days is messages
 

Spudlicious

macrumors 6502a
Nov 21, 2015
921
798
Bedfordshire, England
I think Apple Pro notebooks are 3 years old.. I wouldn't give Apple the compliment by buying from them. Suggest you look at a Dell XPS or Precision. You will need a lot of excel, word and they run terrible on the OSX.. Slow and lag. Best thing about OSX these days is messages

I find Office apps run as well on my Mac as on my Lenovo Win10 machine. Don't know how you find them terrible.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
25,277
10,318
OP:

The iPad you have now...
Can it do the job for you until, say, mid-September?
(I realize an iPad may be limited in what one can do with it, but back when I went to school, all we used were pens and notebook paper!)

It looks like new MBPro's are going to be "announced" at the WWDC, but that they may not actually -ship- until a little while later.

It -might- be "down to the wire" before you actually get a 2016 model "in your hands".
(Then again, they may actually ship sooner)

But if you have something you're using -now-, you could probably do a quick transition to the new one with proper planning.

Otherwise, the old saying applies:
"If you need it NOW, buy it now".

Perhaps you should wait until the new product is (at least) announced, and then make your final choice.
 

leman

macrumors P6
Oct 14, 2008
16,984
14,689
Take for example the Dell XPS 13 as a comparison. It has a newer CPU (Skylake vs Broadwell), but the CPU itself is slower and the GPU is slower as well. The SSD is much slower. The display is worse. IMO, the MBP is worth the slightly higher relative price tag. I'd see the XPS 13 and similar machines as a competition to the MBA or the 12" MB as these machines are better suited towards lighter tasks. What I mean is that the slight speed advantage that the low-powered i5 CPU has won't make it more capable for light work than a Core M CPU, but at the same time both CPUs are not really suitable for prolonged heavy-duty workflows.
 

PTLove

macrumors 6502
Sep 12, 2014
427
685
I strongly believe the XPS 15 to be superior to the MBP 15 at this time.

However, I think the MBP 13" is probably still at the top of the heap for its category.
 
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CACarter1971

macrumors newbie
Apr 28, 2016
4
1
hi,

I'm going to school in the fall and need a laptop for that first week of September no matter what. In the event Apple does not release a new MacBook Pro, which is likely, is the current 13" MacBook Pro retina still a good purchase versus everything out there. Now I did want a MacBook and thought my timing would be perfect if Apple released a new laptop... However how does that current one stack up against let's say... The dell xps, zen book, hp spectre?

What would you guys buy or do?

I would suggest keeping an eye on sales. I got my 13" recently when Best Buy had them $300 off. I figured even if we got an upgrade soon, it wasn't going to be worth $300 to me. With upgrades coming soon, retailers will be looking to clear out the 2015's and you can probably get a nice deal.
 

robertk328

macrumors 6502
Jun 24, 2010
326
98
I think you'd be fine with the 2015 if you can't get a 2016 in time. What are your usage requirements? have you considered the MacBook (non Pro) that just came out?
 

Seahawks101

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 4, 2016
5
0
I think you'd be fine with the 2015 if you can't get a 2016 in time. What are your usage requirements? have you considered the MacBook (non Pro) that just came out?
I'm still one of those guys that use USB sticks and a iPod. So a MacBook is out of the question as I'll have to plug both those in.

With that said, thank you everyone for the input. I'm hoping the current MBP drops a bit in price as I'm leaning towards that!
 

Sully

macrumors regular
Oct 27, 2007
163
109
I'm in the same situation as you OP and Irefuse to buy old technology. So, I'm holding out for as long as possible. If my current computer dies before there are new rMBP's, I'm choosing one of the following:

Dell XPS 13
The new 14' Razor Blade
Surface Book

Notwithstanding some of the posts to this thread, these three computers are all superior to the current rMBP's if you can get over not having OSX for your operating system. I can wait a little while longer. But, from my research and from playing around with Win 10, I'm willing to switch to one of the aforementioned machines if Apple doesn't impress me with an upgrade that specs out at least as good as the high level PC's that are available now. The gap between Apple and these three PC is just not as great as it was 5 years ago. If I had to have something today, pending WWDC, I'd go for one of these three Windows computers.
 

shoehornhands

macrumors regular
Oct 9, 2014
192
95
hi,

I'm going to school in the fall and need a laptop for that first week of September no matter what. In the event Apple does not release a new MacBook Pro, which is likely, is the current 13" MacBook Pro retina still a good purchase versus everything out there. Now I did want a MacBook and thought my timing would be perfect if Apple released a new laptop... However how does that current one stack up against let's say... The dell xps, zen book, hp spectre?

What would you guys buy or do?

The reality is that the average consumer probably won't notice the difference between a Haswell, Broadwell, and Sky Lake processor at similar clock speed / core count, or the difference between an XP941, and SM951 SSD.

With that said, that's not at all an excuse for Apple's hardware lagging so far behind. Currently the $2000+ 15" MBP, and $3000+ Mac Pro (Apple's high-end / professional offerings) are 2 generations behind / with the same hardware they were using 3 years ago.

Given that these products are typically aimed at professional users, and there's no real competition / alternative as far as OS X is concerned, it's a blatant exploitation of market position by Apple.

As it pertains to the more mainstream, they're taking advantage of consumer ignorance (e.g. most people see 2.5 GHz i5 / i7 on an Apple computer, and 2.5 GHz i5 / i7 on a Dell, HP, Lenovo, and assume they're the same thing).

The unprincipled manner in which they're currently operating (as if they haven't the slightest concern beyond their quarterly earnings), is just kinda lousy in my opinion.

But I digress...
 

mantan

macrumors 68000
Nov 2, 2009
1,740
1,029
DFW
Thanks for starting the thread OP. In the same boat here. I'm getting a laptop for my daughter who's heading off to college this fall. It was going to be a graduation present last week, but we both wanted to wait to WWDC to see what was going to be announced.

If Apple doesn't wow us with the new offering, we'll probably go with the current model 13 MPB, especially if the price drops. She was lukewarm on the MB keyboard in the store and I wasn't crazy about the single port and her relying on adapters.
 

BallparkDreamer

macrumors regular
Nov 8, 2015
144
128
Thinking about grabbing the last gen MB for $999, but waiting to see if anything gets announced at WWDC. Don't need the power of the RMB for the most part so we'll see.
 

robertk328

macrumors 6502
Jun 24, 2010
326
98
I'm still one of those guys that use USB sticks and a iPod. So a MacBook is out of the question as I'll have to plug both those in.

With that said, thank you everyone for the input. I'm hoping the current MBP drops a bit in price as I'm leaning towards that!
Keep an eye out for sales :) I got a 15" MBP a month ago because I needed it... it'll last me quite a while and I'm happy having saved some $$ at the same time. Still using a 2011 Mini (upgraded to SSD and 16gb RAM) so latest and greatest isn't an issue.
 
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