Macbook MD103LL/A vs retina

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Dazzled, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. Dazzled macrumors newbie

    Nov 19, 2013
    Hello folks,

    I am looking at purchasing my first mac sometime this week. After months of research and years of being a dedicated PC user and mac lover, I'm finally making the switch. I am a web developer and my current work machine is dying, so I'm making the switch to mac. I refuse to work on the abomination that is Windows 8...

    Anyhow I'm looking at two different options on my limited budget - macbook pro non retina, model MD103LL/A or forking out for a retina system. The main thing that is attracting me to the non retina model right now is the that there is an optical drive (sadly I do still use optical drives), the hard drive is bigger, and other than a difference in screen resolution, I'm not seeing any major difference between specs for both machines. If I was investing in a retina machine, I would have to purchase an apple super drive and an external HD, and right now every penny counts.

    So I was wondering your thoughts. Outside of the SSD and retina display, is there any major difference between the non retina and the pro model I am looking at?
  2. guzhogi macrumors 68030


    Aug 31, 2003
    Wherever my feet take me…
    One thing to remember: the non-retina is pretty much the previous generation MacBook Pro for people who don't want to give up the optical drive (like how Apple kept selling the iPhone 4 & 4S when they announced the 5). Because of that, I don't know how long Apple will support it. Don't get me wrong, it's a great computer. It's just that if you're planning on using it long term, you may want to get the retina. If you ever kept track of Apple the last few years, you would probably know that they end support pretty quickly for non-current models.
  3. Dazzled thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 19, 2013
    How quickly would support end? I'm looking at using it as my sole computer long term. I tried to look around and couldn't find too much regarding long term support. Honestly I could make do without an optical drive, but my other consideration is cost and I'm going for the 15 inch (I have a hard time working on smaller screes), the price difference between retina and non retina was enough to give me pause.
  4. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Mar 4, 2013
    The non-Retina model you're looking at has a slightly inferior GPU (512 MB of video RAM vs 1 GB on the Retina). If you play games, this will matter. If not and you're otherwise comfortable with a very reflective/glossy 1440x900 display, assuming it hasn't been upgraded to the 1680x1050 option, the "classic" MBP will suit you just fine.
  5. Dazzled thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 19, 2013
    So I went into best buy today (the only local place to purchase a mac) and was still undecided as to which model I was getting. I got there and my husband pointed out the huge display they had of open box mac products - 2 ipads, probably 10 13" retinas, and 4 15" retinas. So I was able to score the 8 gig 256 SSD retina 15.4" screen for a steal. I'm super thrilled and learning how it works as I type this.

    Just had to share my good fortune. Thanks for the input and I am sure I will be poking around with questions :)

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