Macbook Pro 15 2010 vs 13 2012

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by BaneDark, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. BaneDark macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    I am about to buy a mac, I have only £860 to spend, that is why I would really appreciate if you could advice me, basically, with my student discount in UK, I can get NEW MBP base model 13" for £859 with 1 yeah apple care for free, or used but in good very condition 2010 MBP 15" with original box, disks, charger, manuals etc, and APPLE CARE UNTIL DEC 2013 for £700-750 (this would let me safe about £100 for my other thinks I need - I study graphic design). Here's the specifications for both of them:

    Macbook Pro 13 2012 NEW:

    2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz
    4GB 1600MHz memory
    500GB 5400-rpm hard drive1
    Intel HD Graphics 4000

    Macbook Pro 15 2010 (MC372B/A) USED:

    2.53GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    4GB 1066MHz DDR3 memory
    500GB 5400-rpm hard drive1
    NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M graphics processor with 256MB of GDDR3 memory on 2.4GHz and 2.53GHz configurations; or 512MB of GDDR3 memory on 2.66GHz configuration
    Intel HD Graphics with 256MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory

    Basically both come with 1 year apple care, used one (but in great condition) is 15" with dedicated graphic card, unlike NEW 13", both come with original boxes etc.

    Please help!
  2. dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    I guess I would decide on whether you like the bigger display or the smaller more.

    Battery life will be better on the 13". HD 4000 and 330M are about equal.
    CPU on the 2012 is faster but not so much that it is a game changer.

    My 2010 15" is all but the battery pretty much as good as new despite heavy use for multiple hours a day on most days. I don't use any protective stuff and there is practically no visible wear. (Only on some keys a little)
  3. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    thanks a lot for reply! well I MUCH MORE prefer 15", i was playing with 13" at apple store and it was too small for me, especially if I use photoshop and illustrator a lot, 15" just seems better. I dont know about battery life, but the used one is still under apple care so perhaps they would change it for the new one when this one will start to fail.

    So in general, base line 13" 2012 is quite equal to 15" 2010? Does it mean if I would go with the used one, I would get bigger screen and about £100 in my wallet and the performance would be the same? As I stated before, the used one is in very good condition, hardly any marks on it, (only a tiny scratch and about 3mm invisible dent on the bottom of the macbook).
  4. circa7 macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2013
    I wouldn't buy either. They both seem too expensive. I would buy used and make sure the computer is working in proper condition and has AppleCare. I don't know if pricing is different in the states vs the UK, but for $1500 USD I just bought a 2012 15" MBP with 2.6ghz i7 with AppleCare good through 2015.
  5. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    unfortunately the prices in UK are much higher than in US :(
  6. dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    Exactly US Apple prices are quite a lot below anywhere else in the world. Most of europe has a much higher VAT that you cannot escape and beyond that Apple adds 10%+ for possible currency value changes or because they simply can charge more.

    Batterylife is only worse in so far as the battery might already be at 90% and that if you want to use the 330M you end up with a lot less time. Originally the 2010 was rated at 8-9h but that was never a reasonable number unless all you did was turn it on and read a pdf. Mine usually yields some 5h realistically.
  7. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    Ok, I went with 15" 2010, how bad does the battery have to be to be classified as a free repair from apple care? And what should be the first things I should do when I get macbook to test that everything works fine, apart from checking wifi, usb, dvd/cd, battery life and keyboard/trackpad? thanks!
  8. dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    As far as I know battery warranty is ever only 1 year and that is probably up on the 2010. Usually there is not really any bad enough you have to see how nice Apple is. If the battery is worse than what they claim it might be they grant a free repair. If it was below 80% before 3 years or with only a couple hundred cycles, it may be possible.
    Afaik there is no legal obligation from Apple's side.

    Well I would usually check the display on a new one but on a used I guess, I'd check the keyboard and the noisy it makes. Sound output and stuff. That is really the only stuff that might wear.
  9. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    The battery is covered for 3 years, but only for defects, not for it just being consumed.

    Say, for example, it held 75% after 900 cycles, that's unlikely to qualify for a repair, whilst 75% after say 600 cycles may do.
  10. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    Though the battery is rated for 80% battery health for 1000 cycles, does that change anything?

    This should answer most, if not all, of your battery questions:
    Apple Notebook Battery FAQ by GGJstudios
    The F.A.Q. includes the following topics:
    • AC POWER

  11. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    Not really - since the battery is only covered for "manufacturing defects" for the 3 years - and battery life depends on usage.

    I.e. if you had a 3 year old battery with 10 cycles, it probably will not hold a charge - that's not a manufacturing defect, it's poor use of the battery. Same goes for 75% after 900 cycles - if the battery has lasted 900 cycles, it's probably not defective. Hence why there's no hard and fast policies that I'm aware of - it's all case-by-case :).

    It's also worth keeping in mind that the battery is rated for "up to" 1000 cycles - since it really depends on how it's been used :).
  12. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    Thanks everyone for replies and useful information.
    I should have the laptop in about 2 days so I will post how it all works after I run some tests.

    I checked on mac2sell website, and it says that this mac is worth £680 pounds, I've spent £749.99 with original box manuals CDs charger and apple care untill 13 of December.

    Do you think its a fair price? Considering that macbook will be packed like new from apple, there is hardly any cosmetic wear (only few scratches and light invisible almost dents on the bottom plate) and almost 1 year applecare. I know its 2010 version, and it doesn't have thunderbolt like 2011 does, however 2011 ones are even more expensive in UK (like minimum £850 without apple care, more scratched and most of the time without the box). Also as I know my 2010 doesn't have FaceTime but besides that I guess it will work fine for me, if atm I am using ASUS laptop with i5 dual core, 500GB HDD and 4GB RAM for graphic design (with intel HD 3000) and it worked great for me using newest Adobe software. The main reason I went for Macbook was that my university uses them and I was sick of switching all the time from OS X to Windows 7.

    So if I don't do heavy stuff like music making, or movie making etc, do you think I should be happy with 2010 just for graphic design (photoshop illustrator inDesign). I know that some people prefer to always have the newest technology but it means putting more money into it, and as I looked at Uni, the iMacs we use for graphic design have Core2Duo and only 2GB of ram and they still work smooth! So if I know what I am about to do with my macbook I guess there was no need to go with higher spec and pay more (which would mean I would have to wait couple of months to safe money - and that wouldn't help as the sooner I learn how to use macs the better!
    Sorry for such a long post :D regards
  13. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
  14. circa7, Jan 13, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013

    circa7 macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2013
    I really think you should spend a few extra £ now if you can swing it for a more powerful machine. Software is pretty rapidly improving so its smarter to buy better if you can afford it so you aren't buying a new machine sooner. I did what you did about 1.5 years ago and I kind of screwed myself because the computer isn't good enough for me anymore. I was on the market just within the past couple of weeks with an $1100 dollar budget, but I ended up buying one for $1900 because ill be able to use it longer, saving a lot of money in the long run. IMO buying a dual core 3 year old laptop is not a wise decision. You'll be wanting a new computer in a year and won't be able to sell yours for much; as time goes on value drops exponentially. You should wait until you can afford a quad core computer with a better graphics card since you can't upgrade them , especially if you see yourself progressing with graphic design work.
  15. Freyqq macrumors 601

    Dec 13, 2004
    CPU: 13" wins by about 15-20%
    GPU: 15" wins by about 20-25%
    RAM: equal
    Battery life: about equal
    screen: 15" wins
    weight: 13" wins

    so..there you have it. If you are going to be gaming, get the 15". If not, get the 13".
  16. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    Hmm I don't know, I know a lot of people (including my teachers) who work on what someone would call "dated" machines, they use Core2Duo processor mostly, some have even only 2gb of ram, and they are graphics, so they use photoshop, illustrator and inDesign (not always the newest one as sometimes you just prefer older more familiar version of the software) and it works alright. I know that I could spend another £750 and buy new retina for about £1500 but I think it would be a little bit of waste as I would buy computer that would have much higher potential than what I would expect it to do.

    Apple still sales i5 2.5Ghz Dual Core in MBP 13" so do you really think that 2.53Ghz i5 in 2010 is dated? Its of course not the newest hardware but as I didn't wanted to go with new MBP 13" because of screen size and I wasn't a fan of external screen I think choosing 2010 15" model with apple care and still spending £110-£250 less than what I would spend for new MBP 13" base model, was a fair decision.

    I will also (in future probably) put 8gb of ram in it (do you think it would void my applecare if i do it myself?) for about £35

    Then maybe later I would install this SSD/HDD Hybrid (this would probably definitely void warranty) They apparently work like full SSD but are much cheaper.

    And then it would be MBP 15" 2010 i5 2.53GHz, 8GB Ram, 500GB SSD Hybrid with applecare for the same price as new baseline 13" from applestore with student discount
  17. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    You really think i5 2.53Ghz dual is dated? New MBP 13" base model from applestore has i5 2.5Ghz dual as well and its 2012 model.

    As I've spent £749.99 on mint condition 2010 with still applecare till 13 of Dec originaly packed just like if I buy it new (even better than refurb as it costed less and comes in original box) I could then in future add 8gb of ram for £35 myself (does it void my applecare?) and put hybrid SSD/HDD 500gb for £79 (as I suppose that will definitely void apple care) and then for the price of base model 13" with student discount I would have i5 2.53Ghz, 8gb ram, 500gb hybrid (which is comparable to normal SSD but much cheaper)
  18. declandio macrumors 6502

    Apr 3, 2009
    London, UK
  19. SlickShoes macrumors 6502a

    Jan 24, 2011
    I have been following lots of ebay auctions for my macbook pro 2011 model as I was thinking of selling it and from what I have seen it is very rare for one to actually sell for over £850, I was actually banking on only getting around 800 for mine.

    I have just built a gaming PC so I am thinking about selling my pro and changing to an air, I would be over joyed with anything over £850 for my 2011.

    If I was you I would have went with the brand new 13" but if you don't like the size then there isnt much you can do really. I maybe would have hunted ebay and gumtree a bit longer and tried to pick up a 2011 model at least as I don't think they are out of your price range, I know mine is in immaculate condition so other will be too.

    At least the one you have bought has applecare so that is a bonus and you have saved yourself £100, so put that £100 in to a savings account and start saving for your next mac you can buy in a couple of years, at least the mac you have bought will still be worth selling in a couple of years to someone so that is always a bonus.


    adding an HDD or Ram won't void your warranty.
  20. GermanyChris macrumors 601


    Jul 3, 2011
    No it's not, but the two i5 comparisons don't work either.
  21. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    could you more specify your reply? what you mean "no its not" ?
  22. declandio, Jan 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013

    declandio macrumors 6502

    Apr 3, 2009
    London, UK
    They both may be called i5 but they are different generations, the newer generation being 'better' than the previous. I haven't checked but they may also have a different number of cores (edit: they don't). Newer models will also have faster ram, a better GPU and faster bus speed etc. You need to do better research for yourself. Even so, a 2010 MBP is still a good machine (I still use a 2006 mbp and a late-2008 model, both still perform well (especially the late 08)); just use what you've bought already and be happy. Newer is better is a good rule of thumb to follow. Buy the newest stuff that you can afford.
  23. BaneDark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2013
    I didnt buy new 13" as the screen is too small and the resolution doesnt convince me. Ill see how happy i will be with 2010
  24. makaveli559m macrumors 6502

    Apr 30, 2012
    The 2010 15 inch is really good :) I have it, the CPU on that 13inch might be a bit better but the intel 4000 graphics compared to the 330m not so much.

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