MacBook Pro (macbook?) or XPS 13

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Moac, Mar 31, 2015.

  1. Moac macrumors member


    Oct 21, 2012
    hi there.

    I am in the lookout for a new laptop for studies, programing & family use.

    I have never had a mac before, however, I have had my iphone 5 for over 2 years now and I am very happy with it.

    So after looking at many YouTube videos it comes down to Dell XPS 13 or Macbook pro (was considering Air but people tell me not to buy it because of the low res screen and inferior design).

    Currently I am able to purchase either one of them for these prices:
    MacBook Pro 13´ (2015) Base model: 13,000kr (1500;- Dollar) with student discount.
    Dell XPS 13´(2015) Non-Touch,1080p ,256GB storage, 8GB Ram: 9,121kr (1060:-Dollar) with student discount 10% + 7% of on

    So I am having this hard choice to make.
    I am planing to use the computer in school but also let my parents use at home , since I have not much use for it at home due to owning a good gaming Windows PC.

    So my questions are:
    Will the Retina screen help my parents when it comes to reading, viewing videos etc? Given that the screen is only 13´,will it compensate the lack size with a the clearer image?

    Is the Macbook Pro worth the price when it comes to programing? Java , Blue-J , Netbeans etc, everything will work, right?
    What other advantages are there?

    Was considering waiting for the new Macbook but that thing looks like a glorified ipad, seems like low spec, might be slow and not able to run all apps properly.

    Thank You for any input.;)
  2. steveyo macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2015
    What about the Lenovo Thinkpad T450s with FHD (1920x1080) display?

    Upgrade the memory and hard drive aftermarket...

    14" is good compromise
  3. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    The retina screen helps a lot if you primarily work with text (i.e. programming). The MBP has significantly faster CPU/GPU and SSD compared to the XPS. Java is fully supported on OS X, but there is not much benefit for Java development on Mac compared to Windows, besides OS X being a unix system.
  4. ghughes20 macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2012
    Full disclosure, I just purchased the same rMBP that you're considering and am very happy with it so far. Though I didn't specifically consider the XPS, I decided to move away from Windows. Though MS is moving away from the Metro Interface, I'd be concerned there's so much Metro in the base code that it would lead to a kludgy user experience. Also, since you're not considering a touch display on the XPS, I don't see how it makes sense to even consider Windows 8.1.

    Good luck with your decision.
  5. Moac thread starter macrumors member


    Oct 21, 2012
    Well Windows 10 is giving me hope for the future of Windows.
    They have returned and added some staple linux and unix features such as multiple desktops and the Start Menu.
    Moreover, Windows 10 is looking good , but I do hope they add more depth, don't like the OVERLY minimalistic flat design.

    Full disclosure: One reason I rather have a Mac is the track-pad, i have tested in shops and I LOVE the feature to switch between windows and full screen windows by swiping. I hope this features comes to Windows 10.
    Also, I love the smooth scrolling experience on a mac, from the brief testing of it.

    Still undecided!

    Is the Retina display being used by most apps?
    What is the battery life like?
    What would the re-sale value be in like 1-2 years?
    How much spaces will the OS take? Is 128GB sufficient?
    (I read that its possible to add 128GB of storage via the SD-card slot) :)
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    It is in OSX

    Very little software available for macs is not retina optimised these days (we are coming up 3 years since the first retina was introduced).

    Your main question will be can you do without any windows software, if you can then go for it, they are great machines. OSX is lovely fast fluid and stable the in built apps do almost everything you need on a day to day basis and there is very little maintenance required. The trackpad is amazing and the number one thing never matched by anyone else.

    If you still need to use windows, for whatever reason then the mac may not be your best buy. You can of course stick it on the mac (paralells or bootcamp) if you need it but a windows laptop may well save you some cash, and running 2 OS's may well be a pain in the bum and not worth the effort.

    Yes you can add more storage in the SD card slot it is not as fast and can unmount on sleep but it si fine for media files.

    You may want to look at last years refurbs for a good saving on the spec you want. Performance wise there is little difference (none for your use case) and you get some good deals with all the usual warrantiees.
  7. prism macrumors 6502a

    Dec 6, 2006
    Sorry, but I beg to differ on this point. Yosemite is anything but fluid and stable on a retina display. In fact it is probably one of the worse OS X releases in recent times. Of course it is still superior to Windows 8.1 in every way but no where near Mavericks.
  8. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    There are a lot of people that have had a contrary experience. Yosemite definitively performs much better on any retina machine that I have seen so far. It does lag on a 2011 MBP we have in the office though.
  9. Moac thread starter macrumors member


    Oct 21, 2012
    Are the system specs holding the Retina MacBook back or software optimization , when it comes to stable, smooth and fluid performance?
  10. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    As far as I can tell

    it is software optimisation. The rMBP is a pretty powerful setup and should handle all the day to day stuff no issue.

    On the other hand mine is great on Yosemite but some people have had issues.
  11. Rigby macrumors 601

    Aug 5, 2008
    San Jose, CA
    What made you pick the XPS 13 over other Windows laptops? Is ultraportability a big issue for you? If not, you can get a good Windows machine for less money and perhaps get a bigger screen for your parents. There are also now many Windows laptops with similar resolution as Apple's Retina display (but there are still many older Windows apps that don't support high-DPI scaling well).

    The main advantage of the Mac in my mind is OS X, which I much prefer over Windows (mainly because it's a Unix derivate, so you get all the usual tools like the shell etc., but without sacrificing commercial software support like with Linux). I have no problems running Yosemite on either my MBP or my 11" Air. Performance is good.

    On the other hand, I'm one of the few who actually likes Windows 8.1 (after disabling the Metro stuff); it has good performance and is very stable in my experience. Windows 10 looks like it will resolve the remaining UI problems than 8.1 still has. And there is no question that you can get a Windows laptop with comparable performance as the MBP for much less money (it won't be as stylish though and will probably have less battery life).
  12. Moac thread starter macrumors member


    Oct 21, 2012
    the main reason I am considering the XPS 13 is the battery life and the small portable size.
    I am in the same boat as you, I don't hate Win 8.1 at all, in fact I find it the BEST windows in terms of speed and performance.

    However, the reason I am considering a Mac is the beautiful UI , advanced track-pad functions and the stunning battery life. (had an Asus laptop years ago, which claimed good battery life.)

    One reason why I haven't bought a mac yet is Windows 10 , it seems , as you said, it fixes many of the complaints towards win 8.1.

    Also, it would be fun trying something new (osx) , I do run Windows on my gaming PC and wont , probably ever, get a Mac as my gaming computer.

    All in all, I care for: Battery life (foremost),noiseless,design, functions, performance.
    Thats why XPS and rmbp are so tied, both are stunning and both have great battery life (around 10 hours for either).
  13. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    We can't tell you that. You need to determine that. All parents do not have the same eyesight. Some need a larger screen and no amount of clarity will compensate. We have no idea what your parents' eyes are like. Have them try out the options.

    Trackpad is a big plus in my book as well but I wouldn't count on having the same experience with Windows.

    You can read all you want but ultimately you really need to experience something to assess it. Try the Mac. Decide whether it's for you or not before the return window closes.
  14. Agent-P macrumors 68030


    Dec 5, 2009
    The Tri-State Area
    I have yet to find a Windows trackpad that's as good as the ones on the Macs. Windows laptops have improved their trackpads significantly recently, but they still aren't quite there. I expect within a couple more years they should catch up on that front.

    As for the gestures, they are coming to Windows 10! I was so excited to hear of that feature because when I upgrade the Windows 8.1 partition on my Mac to Windows 10 I can use them. The best part is the gestures function exactly like the OS X counterparts so there won't be a learning curve for me. Check this link for more information about the gestures in Windows 10
  15. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Please keep in mind though that XPS is MacBook Air class hardware. It does have a HiDPI display though, which is nice.

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