MBP 13" or 15"?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jas5279, Jan 26, 2017.

  1. jas5279 macrumors member

    Dec 21, 2016
    Hey guys,

    I am thinking about getting a MBP now (been a Windows user). And I will go for the models before the touch bar ones (since touch bar ones are too pricey). Now I'm confused whether to go for 13" or 15". I will have to stretch my budget for the 15" one but I can do it. I have very sensitive eyes and I'm afraid a change in screen size will take a lot for me to get used to a smaller screen (currently I have 15.6"). Plus, the higher RAM is attractive too in the 15" one but basically it all comes down to the screen size. So I know this post doesn't make a lot of sense but I want to be convinced to go for the 13" one (since its cheaper) lol

    What would you guys recommend?
  2. Zazoh macrumors 6502a


    Jan 4, 2009
    San Antonio, Texas
    Is your intention to buy the laptop to be mobile? If you are going to be traveling with it, you will want the smaller foot print. If you are not going to travel with it, you can plug into an even larger monitor.

    I went from a 15 inch that was just too big to lug around to a 12 inch rMB and I adjusted quickly just fine. If you really need to open multiple apps side by side, you will need the 15, but if you are going to use one app per screen, or one app at a time, I'd go with the 13 ... if you need the MBP.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Since you already stated that the 15" may be better for your eyes and you'll be staring at the computer for hours on end, I'd definitely lean towards that model.

    Other advantages are a quad core processor and dGPU.
  4. Tomorrow macrumors 604


    Mar 2, 2008
    Always a day away
    The difference in price between the two would let you buy the 13" and an external monitor, if that helps your decision. That's my setup and it works for me; YMMV.
  5. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

    Staff Member

    Apr 2, 2006
    Shropshire, UK
    You can get the same amount of RAM in the 13" as the 15".

    Personally, if I was buying it as an only machine, I'd go with the 15" (even though I had one in the past and found it a bit big), purely on the basis of the quad core processor and dGPU.

    If, on the other hand, I wanted it as a portable companion to a desktop machine, I'd go with the 13" for the better portability and smaller size
  6. sman789 Customer Support


    Dec 25, 2007
    Richmond, VA
    Currently typing on a 15" 2014 rMBP and love the real estate. I've owned the 12" retina MacBook and the Dell XPS 13 all within the past 3 months. The MacBook was 2 lbs, the XPS nearer to 3 lbs and the rMBP is just above 4 lbs. Carrying them around, there's really no difference between 3 and 4.5 lbs for me personally.

    If you're going to be using the laptop a lot outdoors or moving around with it a lot, definitely aim for lighter and I'd recommend the MacBook too.
  7. casperes1996 macrumors 68040


    Jan 26, 2014
    Horsens, Denmark
    As someone who has extensive experience with all of the 2011-2015 MacBook Pros (and a lot of other irrelevant Macs), there's my two cents.
    Do you need performance? 15" is your only bet. I do video editing myself, and whenever it's time for a new MacBook, I sort of wish I didn't need the speed of the 15", or it was somehow possible getting it in the 13" size (although I'd still like the larger screen for editing). The 13" is a lot more portable, and actually seems to be overly well cooled. I've never owned one, but I repair software and hardware stuff for people on the side, and after a hardware fix I run a lot of tests, and even when pushing the CPU and GPU simultaneously, the 13" doesn't really spin up the fans for a long while, and stays a lot colder than the 15". Of course, this is because it's so much less powerful, but still. A lot of people already mentioned external monitors, but to be honest, if you're not going 4 or 5k, I'd prefer the 13" Retina screen to any sized 1080p or 1440p screen, because at least to my mind, resolution matters a hell of a lot more than size (to an extend of course). But with a nice hi-res panel, and no need for the power of the 15" machine, 13" is the way to go I'd say. Regardless of the screen size, because as I said, resolution.

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