Macbook Pro (2011/2012) or Mac Mini (2011)?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by pbmagnet4, Jun 19, 2012.

  1. pbmagnet4 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #1
    (Originally posted in the Macbook Pro forum on accident)

    My white Macbook is on it's last limb it seems. Not only does it need another battery (would be the third), but also another charger. The fact that ML wont be supported isn't that great either. Which leaves me with the notion that it is time to upgrade. With the Mac Pro, the Air, and the iMac not being any of my options I am left with this.

    Im really on the fence between getting a Macbook Pro or Mac Mini. Im looking for something that will run Final Cut X well, Photoshop, and Diablo 3, but gaming is not a top priority. What will give me the best bang for my buck?

    The 15" 2011 Macbook Pro seems to be an interesting option with the Intel HD graphics along with the AMD. It also seems to be the cheapest mobile quadcore option at 1,399 or so as a refurb.

    The 13" 2012 Macbook Pro could be ideal since it has USB3.0 and the new Ivy Bridge processor, but it only has Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics I believe, and I don't know if that will be suffecent for what I want to do... Or it may be more than enough, that is why I am here. At 1,099 with my student discount, I cant help but think that is not too bad of a deal. Although, when comparing it to the Mac Mini the only thing that I can see it has over it is Ivy Bridge and USB3.0, so is it worth 200$ more for that and a screen?

    Finally, there is the 2011 Mac Mini with the dualcore i7 2.7ghz priced around 900. It also had a dedicated AMD graphics card which I understand is better than the Intel HD 4000 being that it is a dedicated card. I already have the Magic Trackpad or whatever they call it, so all i'd need is a monitor (im NOT fond of the glossy Apple screens), and a keyboard. When that is said and done ill be right around the same price as the new 13" Macbook Pro, but with a better (non-mobile) screen and graphics.

    I know all this is alot to ask, but any input is appreciated.
     
  2. Vantage Point macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2010
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #2
    If you don't need USB 3 then I would go for the 15" 2011 refurb. The price is right and you can actually sell it for what you paid since the 'same as new' 1 year warranty is transferrable. You'll get portability, which is lacking in the Mini (you can always get an external monitor), plenty of power, and ability to upgrade to 16gb ram and a larger/faster drive as the need arises. To that end it is the best value. But the best value may or may not be what is right for you.

    As a side note I am extremely pleased with my 2010 MBP which I upgraded. I may upgrade to the 2012 next year when the new models come out and the current models become refurbs - doing this every 2 years, buying last years refurb and selling a two year old MBP, makes the investment relatively small while staying near the cutting edge. These days, with the newer chips and higher ram capacity, macs meet and exceed the needs of almost all users, except those that want the latest and greatest... At the moment I am considering my first ipad, the iPad 2 refurb (new battery and glass) for only $319 - what a deal!!!
     
  3. MacVibe macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    #3
    Your price points are kind of all over the place. The best bang for the buck in terms of quad-core and graphics is a refurb 21.5 in imac - even if you just want to use an external monitor.
     
  4. pbmagnet4 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #4
    Yea the 2011 15" is quite tempting, as far as my price points they are all around 200$ in difference. The 2011 15" refurb at 1,349$ and the at 2012 1,099$ and finally the 2011 Mac Mini for 900$.

    Im kind of leaning towards the 13" being that it has the most recent technology I suppose. I just hope it can run Final Cut X decently :confused:
     
  5. Vantage Point macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2010
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #5
    Don't be fooled by the so-called 'most recent technology'. Let's compare apple and apple ;) The 15" 2011 is a quad core with a dedicated video/GPU, and the 13" is only a dual core CPU and only has an integrated GPU - no comparison, especially for Final cut. Also, for video editing you'll definitely want a larger screen to see your work...
     

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