MacBook Pro Buying Advice

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by wb1, Dec 16, 2016.

  1. wb1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    NC
    #1
    Hello. I'm new and I'm really torn about what to do on a laptop purchase. I have an old iMac that still functions ok, but is really starting to show its age. I want to get a laptop to use for basic functions but I also want to run a program called Zwift and do some minor photo stuff. I've included a photo of the Zwift requirements.
    My issue is I don't know which way to go with this. I do know I'd prefer a 13-inch model.
    On the one hand, the 2015 MBP appears perfectly acceptable (and I can go refurbished to save more money) but on the other, I'm just struggling with buying a nearly 2-year old design. Also, if I go with the new design, I don't know if I should get the touch bar version. That's a huge cost difference, but the non-touch bar version just seems lacking to me. Also I hate that I can't upgrade ram. As a result, I don't know if I should stick with 8 or get 16 (even more cash)
    In the end, I feel like I'm trying to future-proof this to some degree which seems like a fool's errand, but I'm just stuck and would appreciate advice. Any help would be appreciated as I know little about computing matters. Thanks in advance!
     

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  2. manhattanboy macrumors 6502a

    manhattanboy

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2007
    Location:
    In ur GF's bed, Oh no he didn't!
    #2
    You haven't really said why you want a laptop; it sounds like this is to replace a desktop iMac, but then why you want a small screen is unknown. In the end you really have to know yourself and your needs. Is a few hundred bucks going to induce a significant hardship? Is portability needed for some reason now? The specs for your program include a lot of graphical power, but I can't help but think you would be better off with a huge monitor or HDTV set up in front of your bike and a cheap windows solution custom configured to drive this monitor for your purpose. The macbook pro is going to cost a huge premium for being Apple and ultraportable. If you need neither of these two things to get what you want, why pay for them?
     
  3. wb1, Dec 16, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016

    wb1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    NC
    #3
    Sorry. For the sake of brevity, I omitted some details. My trainer and bike are set up in my basement. I keep it down there to keep it out of the way so my wife doesn't hate cycling anymore than she already does. I don't have a tv there. I want the laptop so I can move it to and from the basement and use it for other purposes. I like the idea of portability after using a desktop for so long. I suppose I could go for a 15 inch but I thought that might be overkill for my needs. I have been using my wife's laptop (also a 13-inch screen) and it's fine from a display perspective. Problem is she has an older laptop and it isn't supported by Zwift anymore.
    So I really don't want to buy a tv and a computer if I can help it. I suppose I could set up the desktop downstairs, but I really don't want to have a computer (or a tv) just dedicated for a cycling application as I feel that's not horribly practical. That said I do want to use it for Zwift, so here I am. From a financial perspective, I'm fortunate enough that a few hundred bucks won't induce a hardship, but again, I am trying to be somewhat practical. Also, I've owned several Macs and, in my experience, they hold up well over the long term. I hate windows and don't want to mess with it so I'm a little resistant to getting a PC. Times may have changed and I may need to rethink that, but I like Mac OS and would prefer it for home use.
    Hope that helps.
    --- Post Merged, Dec 16, 2016 ---

    Also, I should note that I'm using Zwift mostly in the winter months and in inclement weather. Yes, it is year-round, but still highly seasonal. Hopefully that gives additional insight into why I would prefer not to have a dedicated system. Trying to kill two birds, so to speak
     
  4. theluggage macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    #4
    At the moment, I'd wait unless it was urgent. There's a lot of negativity about the new MacBook Pros right now - I'd at least give it a few months until its clear that things like the battery life and graphics issues have been fixed for good (and not just papered over) by software updates. Also, the range/availability of USB-C devices might pick up & manufacturers will have a chance to test stuff with the new machines. Plus, we'll see if Apple updates the mini or iMac.

    If my laptop died and I had to buy today, I'd either get a 2015 rMBP or change tack and go for an iMac 5k (the current model is only about a year old and has the latest suitable CPU) and an Air (now looking like a timeless classic) for portable duties.

    Of the new lot, I think I prefer the non-touchbar, simply because it makes sense as a "retina MacBook Air" ultraportable whereas the touchbar models can't decide if they're overpowered ultrabooks or underpowered workstations.
     
  5. wb1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    NC
    #5
    Thanks. Yeah, I'm leaning this way but I'm curious about the graphics. I keep second guessing whether I really need the newer Iris or if it will give me more longevity. Any thoughts?
     

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