Need a little help - 13in or 15in

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by bmcmahan, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. bmcmahan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2013
    #1
    I like many can't seem to make up my mind on which upgrades to get with my macbook pro purchase. I'm about to start Graduate school in the summer and need an updated computer. I currently have a 5 year old PC that has seen its best day and I use a Mac at work and like how it runs. I'm looking at the Macbook pro non-retina 15 and it gets hazy from this point with all of the upgrades. I will also use this for music and minimal photo and video editing with my Gopro camera. Money is not a huge factor, but I don't want to make the wife mad or go overboard with upgrades that aren't necessary for my use. I thought about going with the 13in, but I like having the GDDR that the 15 offers.
    Would video editing be very time consuming with 13in Intel 4000 vs with additional GDDR on the 15in?
    I'm looking for a machine that will last about 5-6 years before I have to replace it with a newer model. I know I'm going to get a tone of different opinions, but that's what I'm looking for between these machines. Thanks for the help, I'm looking to buy in May.

    13in
    2.9Ghz
    750HD – 5400 (I figured I would get an external usb3 or thunderbolt drive for video or upgrade to 256 SSD for $270)
    8GB of RAM (Upgraded to 16GB $125)
    AppleCare
    Will run me $1,582 plus RAM upgrade or $1,852 (SSD) plus RAM upgrade.


    15in
    2.3 w/ 512 GDDR
    4GB Ram – Thinking of buying Crucial and upgrading to 16GB for $125
    750 HD – 7200
    Hi-Res Antiglare
    AppleCare

    Will run me $2,163 (plus Ram Upgrade)

    Or
    2.6 w/ 1GDDR
    Everything else the same.

    Will run me $2,283 (plus RAM upgrade)
     
  2. B... macrumors 68000

    B...

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    #2
    Video editing is both GPU and CPU related. I would say go for the 15", both because of its screen real estate, quad core processor, and discrete GPU. It will also likely have better battery life than a 13" because of the larger battery. This comes, though, with lowered portability.
     
  3. atMac macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    #3
    If you are doing a LOT of HD video then get the 15in if it's mostly just a hobby thing then I say 13in. The 15in will be noticeably faster when doing video edits.
     
  4. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    #4
    Folks will argue with me but the deciding factor in a 13" MBP vs. 15" is size and weight. i.e., how much value to you put in portability?

    Personally, I'm a 13" fan because I can simply plug in an external monitor when I'm desk bound. If I travel... the form factor of the 13" is a godsend when on a lap, small desk or cramped airline seat.

    I also do some CPU intensive tasks which might be more suited for the muscle of the 15" version but in the grand scheme of things I use my 13" MBP much more often for everyday things. I bet you and most other people do as well.
     
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #5
    One thing I like about the 15" MBP over the 13" model is screen real estate. I found using photoshop to be a bit constraining with my old 13" MBP.

    Another plus is the quad core cpu and the discrete GPU, both pluses for photo and video editing.
     
  6. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    #6
    You can buy a nice external monitor with the savings.
     
  7. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #7
    True, but then I'd have to lug that monitor around with me, which kind of defeats the purpose of the laptop. I need something that is mobile and provides amble screen real estate. If mobility is not an issue, then I'd recommend an iMac
     
  8. Bokes macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #8
    If you do not have or want to use an external monitor- I say go 15.
    IMO- It's the perfect size for a home laptop.
    It's also light enough to travel once in awhile.

    If you plan to lug it around on a weekly basis- get the 13 and consider an external monitor.
     
  9. bmcmahan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2013
    #9
    Thanks everyone for the info. I'm leaning towards the 15in, now that I sleep on it a night. I just wondering if I would tell a big difference between the 2.3 and 2.6 i7. Most of my photos and video are taken from a GoPro 2, but they are really just for fun for the family. The only thing I really like about the 2.6 is the 1GB GDDR, but I think 512 should work without any issue. Especially if I up the RAM to 16GB and eventually change the HHD to a 512 SSD.
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #10
    Personally, I don't too many people will notice any real world speed differences between the 2.3 and the 2.6
     
  11. TallManNY macrumors 68040

    TallManNY

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    #11
    get the SSD whatever you do. that will have the most significant performance boost.
     
  12. sapibobo macrumors newbie

    sapibobo

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2013
    Location:
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    #12
    I would go for 15 inch.
    Size wise the 15 its not that annoying because it is so thin. 13 inch model will be useful if you frequently working in tight space area such as plane.
     
  13. Ifti macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    I use my 13" (spec in sig) for video editing just fine, with Final Cut Pro. I don't find the screen size limiting, and I like the portability of it overall.
    Rendering is nice and fast, and editing is seamless, no problems at all (I use an external FW800 scratch disk). I edit full 1080p video (as seen in my YouTube channel) just fine.

    Saying that, I do wonder what it would be like to go 15" and am considering a Retina in the next refresh with Haswell chips, but as it stands I personally don't find the 13" limiting at all when it comes to video editing (oh and I also use a GoPro (Hero 3) and a DSLR).
     

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