Is it worth upgrading to a new MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by gtNY, Nov 10, 2016.

  1. gtNY macrumors newbie

    Feb 12, 2008
    Queens, NY
    Hi all,

    I've been thinking it's time to get a new laptop (I currently run a late 2008 unibody MacBook), and with the release of the new MBPs I'm starting to feel the itch to buy. I went to the Apple store over the weekend and sadly they didn't have any on display for me to test drive. I'd probably go for one with a touch bar but just looking at the tech specs of the new MBPs, at least superficially it doesn't really look like much of an upgrade from what I have now. There are clearly some advantages, better screen, SSD rather than HDD, faster bus, etc. Can anyone help explain to me whether the new MBP truly is truly a better faster machine than what I have now? Or in your opinions, am I better off waiting (or even consider downgrading to a Macbook?)

    spec comparison.jpg
  2. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    A 2008 MBP like yours has a muticore geekbench score of 2201, the new MBP without touchbar running on 15 w MacBook Air level chips has a score of 7053, so more than three times as fast and the touchbar ones with 28w processors and better graphics will be even faster, talking of graphics the new iris 550 is about 5times as fast as what your Mac has if not more.

    Not to mention thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.1 connection speeds super fast wifi and Bluetooth. A vastly superior screen (just about the best in a laptop at the moment) super fast PCIe nvme ssd's that get rid of the biggest computer bottle necks and much faster ram.

    All in all it is so much faster slimmer lighter smaller and better to use that you won't believe it it's a huge upgrade on every level. Hell any retina MBP is huge upgrade on what you have right back to 2012.

    A MacBook will also be a vast improvement on what you have though so if screen size isn't an issue and money Is then go for that.
  3. Mr.Blacky macrumors 6502

    Jul 31, 2016
    Everything on the new MacBook Pro is MUCH better (okay, the ports are arguable, but technically they are far superior), so what exactly are you expecting?
  4. richpjr macrumors 68030


    May 9, 2006
    It's faster, lighter, has a much better screen, modern ports, latest bluetooth and wifi, and is all around a far superior machine technology wise. Only you can answer if you need those features.
  5. BrettApple macrumors 65816


    Apr 3, 2010
    Heart of the midwest
    I owned that exact machine up until mid 2014 when I bought a Late 2013 13" rMBP to replace it. It was a major upgrade even back then though I did put an SSD in the 2008 that helped immensely back in 2011.

    I'd say go ahead and do it at this point. Maybe not a few years ago but by now you will certainly see a difference. I was using mine to process large RAW files off my camera, encode videos, run Aperture, Photoshop, InDesign, Logic, etc and while it still performed okay the Core 2 Duo was starting to show it's age. So it was finally time to upgrade. I only upgrade every 5 or so years, though I had my 2008 for 6 and it's still in use by a family member so it's more than paid for itself at this point in time.
  6. Wildkraut macrumors 6502a


    Nov 8, 2015
    Well it is a lot faster, but sit down and ask yourself "Why do I need a faster machine?"
    Does this speed increment help you to achieve something more efficient, or do your work faster?
    Or it's simply a "wanna wanna wanna" feeling?
    Go and ask yourself first... :)
  7. gtNY thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 12, 2008
    Queens, NY
    Thanks for the input from everyone so far, it's very helpful. I tend to keep my computers for a very long time (as you can see), so I want to make sure I buy something that will still be relevant in 6-8 years time. The MacBook I have now certainly did, so I just want to make sure it's replacement will have a similar lifespan.
  8. tonyfirshman, Nov 10, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2016

    tonyfirshman macrumors newbie

    Nov 30, 2011
    Sorry - this was sent blank somehow and I cannot see how to delete it.
  9. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Do you need "legacy ports"?

    If so, the 2015 is still in the product line...
  10. tonyfirshman macrumors newbie

    Nov 30, 2011
    Other than the programmable top bar it is pretty similar to the current product.

    I had a really bad experience in Apple Watford. Not one person had any good knowledge of the product. The only Thunderbolt 3 (TB3) interface they knew about was a VGA adapter. General connectivity at TB3 speed will simply not be possible right now.
    At my desk I need two monitors, network, USB3, and power. Not easy with only four TB3 ports, but possible with usb-c adapters.
    Belkin have designed a TB3 box but it is not yet available - .
    From prices in the EU, it could be £300.
    This could get nearly there - three USB3, RJ45, two TB3, DisplayPort (another adapter needed for anything!), audio out (pointless) and Macbook power. No SD slot, HDMI or VGA. However it will reduce the many leads I have to plug in when at my desk.

    I cancelled my order and will wait for the Belkin interface. I will still need to buy a number of usb-c converters for portability.
  11. Antairez macrumors regular


    Mar 17, 2015
    I'm upgrading from a 2012 Air ....

    If you have never experienced a SSD before, you need to upgrade. Day and night difference.
  12. Deanster macrumors regular

    Jun 6, 2005
    Couple thoughts - I usually tell people NOT to upgrade until they're desperate to do so, but given that you're working on a 2008 MacBook, I think we can safely say you're due, and that you'll find the performance increase nothing short of magical.

    The new MBP's are I/O monsters, and should remain relevant for a long time - this is where the USB-C/TB3 ports really become a big deal - it's hard to imagine a need for more I/O power in the next decade or so.

    The current 12" MacBook would also be a meaningful upgrade for you - it's a really killer little machine if you can live with the single port. I'm writing this on my 2015 12" MacBook, and it's been surprisingly painless, but I'm also using this as a secondary 'ultra mobile' laptop, not as my only machine - I'd find that problematic.

    Last but not least, you might think about grabbing an SSD (samsung 850 series is excellent and very reasonably priced on Amazon), and throwing it into your old MacBook either to tide you over while you decide what you're going to do, or to make it a viable backup machine, or to give to a family member. It's getting to be pretty elderly, but an SSD provides a powerful pick-me-up for any laptop running a rotating drive.
  13. imorton macrumors 6502

    Aug 21, 2010
    First off.... u don't mention what you do with a computer

    Maybe you should put in a SSD and increase the RAM and save yourself thousands.

    Let us know what you NEED to do with your laptop.
  14. idunn macrumors 6502

    Jan 12, 2008
    In presuming you are speaking of a 13" model, that refurbished from Apple—2015 models—offer some significant advantages aside from price.

    Two examples from those listed today (this ever changing in the moment). One with essentially the same specs as a 2016—2.9GHz, i5, 8GB Ram, 512GB SSD—sells for $1,439 refurbished. A 2015 model, so Intel Iris Graphics 6100 versus Intel Iris Graphics 550 in the new 2016 model. With but a modest price differential from the $1,799 Apple is asking for the 2016 with 2.9GHZ, i5, and 256GB SSD.

    Price-wise this refurbished 2015 is more attractive, at $1,099, but slightly less powerful with 2.7GHz, i5, 8GB Ram, but only 128GB in its SSD. This last could be a no go if one wishes a practical amount of storage.

    Point being you could save some money and end up with what is essentially a new MBP with basically the same specs as a 2016 model. Trade offs would be less flash in the screen, a lesser GPU, and slower SSD performance. All points to ponder.

    However—particularly if one intends to keep this computer long term—there are some compelling reasons to consider a 2015. As is customary, the 2016 will be upgraded in time, and then in comparison seen as lesser than and more expensive than that new. Apple may not reconsider its present strategy, but if it does and releases truly capable MBPs in future, then these 2016 models will be seen for what they are.

    Apple has given and taken here, but essentially choosing to downgrade the overall capability of the MBP—especially in light of the increases in performance they should have been given—in favor of less size, weight and increased battery life (but this last with actually smaller batteries, achieved by using components less power hungry, if less capable).

    Not to mention the ports. No MagSafe for one, and for some that alone could decide it; or the feel of the new keyboard. So would one like the many dedicated ports of the 2015 model or the limitations and also advancements offered in only a few USB-C ports?

    Apple clearly intends the 2016 MBP to mark a departure and new direction. Many right out of the box want nothing to do with it. The 2016 MBP may prove the future, maybe, if surely some teething pains along the way. So one could sign up for that rodeo, or sit it out for now with what by most measures is a thoroughly excellent choice in the 2015.
  15. Gudi, Nov 10, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2016

    Gudi macrumors 68020


    May 3, 2013
    Berlin, Berlin
    There are more important things than speed to a computer, but yes it's also a lot faster. But look:

    Should you wait any longer: No!
    Should you buy a MacBook: Maybe.
    Than you should go for the MacBook Pro, not the MacBook and even consider a TouchBar and TouchID. Waiting another year won't bring you better technology with more longevity, but perhaps lower prices.
  16. urkel macrumors 68030

    Nov 3, 2008
    That picture makes me wish that Apple would just release a "MacBook Pro Classic".

    As much as Apple wants Thin and Light, I think theres a lot of Pro users who accept that a bigger machine can house a lot more power and versatility. So we'd essentially see an upgraded 2012 Non-Retina Unibody design that had two standard upgradable drive bays, upgradable memory, magsafe and SD. Just toss in a Retina Screen, modern processor, a dual-drive 3TB SSD/HDD Fusion and you'd have a Pro machine that can do anything except fit under a locked bathroom door.
  17. Gudi macrumors 68020


    May 3, 2013
    Berlin, Berlin
    Computers used to be as big as a house and darn slow. Smaller machines can house a lot more power and versatility. The effect is known an 'miniaturisation', Pro users should be able to figure that out.
  18. idunn macrumors 6502

    Jan 12, 2008
    Basically what many were waiting for in a new MBP—save for something more svelte represented in the 2012-16 retina. Minus the glue, of course.
  19. turbineseaplane macrumors 68040


    Mar 19, 2008
    Personally I'd get a 2015 model (new or refurb)
  20. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    You going to see anywhere from 150 to 400% increase in performance for CPU or GPU intensive cast. Not to mention start up and shutdown speeds plus read write speeds will be 10 times that of your 2008 hard drive. I've had the 2008 Model as well as a 2012 retina MacBook Pro, and while I love the 2008 I think it is pretty much end of life within a year and it is certainly showing signs of age. If you have the resources I think these new models are going to represent a solid machine for 3 to 5 years.
  21. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    The new ones are insanely better than what you have now. The question is, is it better to spend $71 on a 275GB SSD (from Crucial) and use it for another year, or buy new now? I would say you are due for an upgrade. But, that SSD upgrade will really help your computer feel vastly newer and more usable. Even then, it probably wouldn't be worth it to keep as your main machine beyond 1-2 addition years with the SSD upgrade. If you have the money, a new 13" would be a lot nicer, but it depends on how much you "need" it.
  22. StayPuft Suspended


    Mar 22, 2016
    If you're coming from a 2008, it's going to be a night and day difference, but so would the 2015 model ... and a 2014 model. Honestly anything that's within the last few years is going to be exponentially faster than yours. You don't need to get the latest and greatest to see a signifiant boost, but if you wanna pony up the dough, then by all means.
  23. Mcdevidr macrumors 6502a

    Nov 27, 2013
    Good god you're wishing for a MacBook classic. That thing is a brick. Hell the 2015 is a brick at this point.

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