Macbook Pro Regular or Retina (13")?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by amielDH, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. amielDH macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 18, 2012
    Location:
    Philippines
    #1
    I would just like to ask for your opinion. I currently have a Mac mini mid 2012, the base model and I am planning to buy my first Macbook and I am having a difficult time choosing between the non-retina and the retina 13" macbook pro. I know the non retina version is an old model but I am worried that if I buy the retina version I cannot do anything to fix it just in case it gets damaged or broken since most if not all of the parts are soldered to the motherboard.

    Here are the things I love and hate of the two models:

    Non-retina
    Pros:
    1. Upgradable
    2. Repairable
    3. I really love the battery status button with light
    4. Cheaper

    Cons:
    1. Heavier
    2. Less battery life
    3. Older chipset
    4. Thicker
    5. USB port placement

    Retina
    Pros:
    1. Lovier display
    2. Longer battery life
    3. Thinner and lighter
    4. More futureproof
    5. HDMI

    Cons:
    1. More expensive
    2. Non upgradable and repairable
    3. Only 128gb (the only configuration i can afford)

    By the way, I am from the Philippines and the price difference between the two is about $230, unlike in the US that is just $100. Also here in my place we do not have any Official Apple stores so when a Mac has problems we have a hard time in getting it repaired.

    I guess my real question is, is the non-retina macbook pro still worth the money at this time, with all the new stuff that's out? And is the retina model really worth it?

    I really hope you could help me out.

    Thank you.
     
  2. macNwindow macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2013
    #2
    get the non-retina. if you live in area that doesn't have an apple store, then it is more logical to me to get a computer that you can interchange parts off of.
     
  3. Jnesbitt82 macrumors 6502

    Jnesbitt82

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2013
    Location:
    Ohio
    #3
    Buy the non retina. To be honest, unless you have one of each side by side, you won't miss not having retina. The non retina display still looks great on a mbp.:)
     
  4. amielDH thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 18, 2012
    Location:
    Philippines
    #4
    thank you for the reply, sir. But is it "safe" for me to get an older model? I believe that they are phasing out the non-retina model very soon and it's kind of scary knowing that and still buying an expensive machine. If only they upgraded the non-retina to Haswell, it would be an easy pick!
     
  5. macNwindow macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2013
    #5
    Even if they are being phased out, you have a machine that i envy. I wish i am able to upgrade my rmbp. You should not be scared about owning a machine that is still new out of the box. Next year's technology will be better than the rmbp of today. So either way, get something that fits your needs, and not wants.
     
  6. Jnesbitt82 macrumors 6502

    Jnesbitt82

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2013
    Location:
    Ohio
    #6
    Safe? Of course. Just because the non-retina models are older technology, don't count them out. The biggest thing with the Haswell chips was they cut down on power consumption. However, a retina display will use more power than a non retina display. Another thing to consider is the type of drive and size you prefer. You will lose your internal DVD/cd drive on the new models but you will gain a ssd. There is no question that the ssd drives are faster, however, they will cost you a pretty penny depending on the size you want. Of course if you buy the older model, you can upgrade to a ssd when it is financially convenient for you. Btw, I bought a non-retina mbp in November. It has the i7 chip with 8gb ram and 750gb hd. I will be upgrading to 16gb ram in February. I couldn't do that if I had bought the new model.
     
  7. amielDH thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 18, 2012
    Location:
    Philippines
    #7
    Wow! Thank you, sir. That is the most educated reply I have ever received with regards to my query. I guess I'll be getting the regular pro then. Cheers!

    ----------

    It's just that in reading a lot of reviews from blogs and watching youtube video reviews, most if not all of them keep saying that "with only a little price difference why would you settle for an older machine....". They would also say that the retina pro is really worth the money and all. I guess I was blinded by all the glitz and glamour of the retina pro and forgot what I really need. LOL! But thank you for your inputs, they really helped! :)
     
  8. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2010
    Location:
    Brasil
    #8
    The base 13" cMBP is a great deal for worldwide consumers. BTO upgrades are only affordable in US, otherwise they cost twice or even more. The 13" rMBP can run pretty smooth with a 250GB SATA III SSD and 16GB RAM, but you can live with the standard configuration for the next couple of years.
     
  9. AppleGoat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2010
    #9
    I'd get the rMBP and purchase an external drive when financially convenient for you. The weight of the rMBP + the external drive will still be less than the cMBP in your backpack. I have a 2011, non-Retina MBP which I love -- but it's hard to endorse the past. Do you have access to the Refurbs in the Philippines? Would an Air (better screen and graphics than cMBP) with a 256GB SSD be within your means? For 2014, the cMBP is honestly not a very good buy at $1200.
     
  10. ecschwarz, Jan 19, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014

    ecschwarz macrumors 65816

    ecschwarz

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    #10
    I think it might be "safer" to get the older model simply because there's a ton of the non-retina models floating around that Apple will continue to support for the foreseeable future. If you got AppleCare, you'll be covered for an additional two years, regardless of what Apple's product lineup looks like.

    Haswell didn't come to the rMBPs until October 2013, and the 13" rMBP and non-retina MBP were nearly identical specs-wise until then (same CPU/GPU), except that you have a hard drive/optical drive/upgradeable RAM. Upgrade to an SSD when it's convenient and affordable for you and you could always put your original drive in an enclosure for more storage (what I did). The Mac mini is still being sold with that Ivy Bridge CPU/GPU combination, so Apple still seems some value in it.

    I got mine in May of last year, even though I was certain the Airs and the rMBPs were getting updated and have no regrets. It's a good computer, really easy to work on, and there are lots of parts available as both official warranty replacements and on the used market.

    Also, since you mentioned HDMI as a "pro" for the rMBP, you can get a Thunderbolt (actually Mini DisplayPort) to HDMI adapter easily and it will carry audio, too. I kind of wish that I had an extra Thunderbolt port, but I haven't run into any issues where it was absolutely critical.
     
  11. Commy1 macrumors 6502a

    Commy1

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2013
    #11
    Having access to both of these fabulous machines, I can say that it depends on what you want to do with it. Internet browsing, school work, writing, general use I'd take the Regular.
    Reason for that is it's more fixable, and upgradable when/if parts become cheaper, the size won't matter as much nor the screen quality as much as if you were using it for your profession or school with the intent of professional results.

    If you do have to use a laptop for your job involving imagery or such related to that, or even plan on it later then I would take the conclusion I came to myself, invest in the Retina, dump a bit more cash into the upgrades and take damn good care of it so that you won't have to worry about the unfixability of the design.
     
  12. AppleGoat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2010
    #12
    Don't get me wrong, I think the non-Retina is still a great machine. Screen snobs will decry that the cMBP sports a TN but a fine TN it is, and the colors are a lot richer on a glossy screen, as much of an inconvenience as it could be under certain lighting situations; colors pop when indoors under auspicious lighting. 1280 x 800 is low-res by today's standards, but I don't really have a problem with it. It's also fulfilling to personalize your machine through DIY.

    Nonetheless, as I have said to others faced with your dilemma, the Retina MBP is, at the moment, Apple's baby -- it represents the direction Apple is going. Conversely, why would you invest so much in a machine Apple is trying to phase out?

    Bear in mind, the Retina doesn't only have a better screen and internals. The WiFi is faster, speakers are allegedly louder, and faster I/O (i.e.: Thunderbolt 2.0).
     
  13. ecschwarz macrumors 65816

    ecschwarz

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    #13
    So true - just ask anyone who has bought a Mac Pro in the last 3 years. ;) Apple tends to focus on a core group of machines and those are what it pushes. There's nothing wrong with this, since they offer good options for 90% of customers.

    Good points - although that does only apply to the current rMBP - the models prior to October 2013 (so most refurbs) lose all these advantages. Plus, if you are using the machine at "retina" resolution, you're displaying the same amount of information (just more detailed) as the non-retina model (much like the iPhone 4 vs. the iPhone 3GS or iPad 2 vs. iPad 3). The difference from iOS devices is that you can also run the display as a really high resolution traditional display and have double the pixels in each dimension (and really tiny icons/menus/etc.). This can be handy if your eyesight can handle it, trumping the 1280x800 resolution.

    That being said, 1280x800 is getting small for Macs, but I've seen a lot of new consumer PC laptops with displays as big as 15" still running at 1366x768.
     
  14. AppleGoat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2010
    #14
    Yeah, when I pointed to the 1280 x 800 resolution as something of a shortcoming, I meant in regards to it being the native resolution, not the default resolution. A lot of the PC notebooks are shipping with 1080p resolution but everything is so darned small and hard to read when a small screen sports such a resolution. Apple got it right with scaling.
     
  15. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #15
    The only thing I will say in regards to the rMBP over the cMBP is that if you went with the classic MBP, you'll not likely see any performance increase from your current Mac Mini. In the end, you'll be spending money to provide yourself with mobility, that's it. I'm not knocking the logic and advice of getting the cMBP in your situation,but I did want to point out the cost of buying a laptop and not getting any benefit other then mobility.
     
  16. fskywalker macrumors 65816

    fskywalker

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    #16
    Buy the rMBP, if you buy a refurbished unit the price will be better and you get the same, 1 year warranty as new. That way you may afford the 256GB rMBP version.
     
  17. disasterdrone macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2013
    #17
    Definitely the classic, for all the reasons above!
     

Share This Page