Pardon me if I'm not very good about using the abbreviations, I haven't seriously looked into a new computer in a very long time. I own a MacBook with an aluminum unibody, 2.4 GHz version. Manufactured late 2008, began use in February 2009. It's currently on its second battery, which is operating at 95% after a year. The poor thing still runs decently, but it's breaking down at a steady rate. It tends to "blackscreen" two or three times a day, a state where the hard drive and other elements wake up from sleep, but the screen is unresponsive. That forces me to do a hard restart. I've tried many workarounds/etc, but nothing really works. Another glaring problem is the trackpad "sticks", where it won't pop back up from a depressed position. I attempted to replace it, but the problem wasn't solved, leading me to believe the problem is the unibody itself, which has been dented somewhat. It also tends to run very hot and has a short battery life, despite the high capacity. (TL;DR - Still a decent computer, with many annoyances that are hindering its usefulness. Late 2008 aluminum unibody version.) With much regret, I'm looking at replacing my laptop. It has served me well for many years, and I will probably continue to use it for some things. The options: This model. I can easily purchase and install a higher RAM capacity myself, and it seems like a decent deal. However, I'm not terribly sure of the refurbished store. Either of the MPB 13" models. The 2.5 GHz is more within my price range, but at a stretch (and with my student discount), I can plausibly look at the 2.9 GHz version. How serious is the speed difference? The 13" 2.5GHz with Retina display is my last option. Again, the price is a bit daunting, but I can bring it down a bit with my small student discount. Are there any glaring differences between this and the 2.5 GHz version without Retina? The only real downside is the limited 128 GB storage, however, I can manage that with a bit of care. The computer will be used for some gaming (I tend to play any good game I can afford and get to work on a Mac), paper writing and note taking, photo editing, digital art with a drawing tablet, photo editing... And about everything else. I admit freely that I am not easy on my computers, but I managed to get four years out of this one, so I've come to trust Macs. As to the storage issue, I have a 1 TB backup drive, and a couple large capacity flash drives that more portable files can be stored on, so the 128 GB would be manageable, and shouldn't factor very heavily in advice. All models I'm considering are 13", simply for price reasons. I'm mainly curious as to what your personal experiences with the different models are, what the main differences and selling points are. (I am not as familiar with the processor and graphic card differences as I'd like to be.) As a college student, I naturally hope for something that will last me another four to five years. Tomorrow I'm planning on looking at the models in-store! Thank you all for any advice and help. I'm sorry I was so long-winded!