Need some advice (13" tb or 13" ntb?)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Ilzx, Dec 16, 2016.

  1. Ilzx macrumors newbie

    Ilzx

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    #1
    Been lurking around most of the time and this is my first post.

    I need an upgrade from my old Asus laptop and was thinking of getting either the MacBook pro 13" tb/512GB/2.9ghz/8GB or the 13" ntb/512GB/2.0ghz/8GB

    I am a student so I will mostly be using this for word, and presentations, as well as run certain bioinformatic programs. I will also be using photoshop and lightroom quite a fair bit as I do photography as a hobby. Would like to have my laptop to be able to do light gaming from time to time (I don't play very intensive games as I have a console). When at home, I also have an external display that I plug it into.

    My concern on the 13" ntb would be the 2.0ghz processor and that it only has 2 ports as compared to the tb version. On the other hand, I've been reading of all kinds of glitches with the tb version. Although the battery life seemed to improve with the 10.12.2, I'm rather concerned about the glitching on the touchbar that happened to some people. I honestly don't care for the touchbar. Wouldn't kill me to not have it.

    Would the 2.0ghz processor be enough for what I do, and for future proofing? And for those who are using the ntb version, is the lack of ports very inconvenient?

    Upgrading the processor on the ntb doesn't seem very worth it for me as that would amount to the same price as the 512gb/2.9ghz tb version from where I am from.

    If anyone who has experience with both laptops can give me some advice I would really appreciate it! Thanks!!
     
  2. Scott G. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2016
    Location:
    Amsterdam, NY
    #2
    If you were thinking of paying the extra for the TB model, why not get 16gb on the nTB one?
     
  3. skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    #3
    Do you have a budget? Is it somewhat elastic? If it is I think the TB model is the better long term investment with 16GB of RAM. Have you used Mac OS before? Personally I think coming from an Asus you will be thrilled with either!
     
  4. raqball macrumors 6502a

    raqball

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    Sep 11, 2016
    Location:
    California
    #4
    The TB is a gimmick for the most part in my daily use.. I am seriously considering returning it for the nTB version..
     
  5. skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

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    Mar 24, 2011
    #5

    But the extra ports and higher wattage CPU and better graphics aren't a gimmick.
     
  6. SeanZy macrumors 6502a

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    Dec 29, 2008
    #6
    Switched from the touch bar version to the non touch bar version and would never go back.
     
  7. raqball macrumors 6502a

    raqball

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    California
    #7
    Except for the extra ports, the CPU and GPU are very minor upgrades over the nTB..
     
  8. IngerMan macrumors 6502a

    IngerMan

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2011
    Location:
    Michigan
    #8
    The resale value of the TB is going to exceed the resale of the nTB 3 years down the road if they continue with TB, which would be the best bet. Kinda like the change to Retina display versus prior models. Of course this will draw much debate from nTB owners ;)

    Read reviews on resellers and see how they compliment the TB like it's the new sliced bread....
     
  9. skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    #9

    I agree to some extent and for a college student the non TB is probably just fine. But the TB model should provide a little more future proofing and assuming they sell it, resale is going to be better. Quite honestly I can't imagine having ports on one one side of the machine but thats me. And then to split hairs theres the difference in the RAM speed (negligible) and the two MICs instead of three. I'd pony up and go baseline TB, but either are going to fit the need here VERY well.
     
  10. thesaint024 macrumors 6502a

    thesaint024

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2016
    Location:
    Republic of California
    #10
    I suppose a couple people may have experience with both, but not really necessary to help your decision. Someone with either knows what the differences are as they are well documented here. Agree with posts above. The cpu/graphics is not a huge performance jump on the tb model unless plugged in and doing intensive tasks. Doesn't sound like that will be an issue with you. The tradeoff is better battery on the ntb because of the lower speeds, less hardware, allowing for more space for a larger battery. The TB is TBD. There's limited 3rd party support right now to say if it's a guaranteed great feature. Touch ID is nice if you open/close your MBP a lot and want quick log-ons. The number of ports is a real issue though. 2 vs. 4 could matter to you. It hasn't to me as I've never had more than 2 connections, but it IS nice to have them on both sides for power plug options. And then there's the $400. I went TB just for the potential of cool things to come, in addition to the bump in specs. But hope alone is worth $400 to me.
     
  11. raqball macrumors 6502a

    raqball

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    Sep 11, 2016
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    California
    #11
    I ordered a nTB from BH just now since their $100 off sale ends tonight. Once I get it I will probably return my TB..

    I've had several issues with my TB (screen glitches, TB glitches, terrible battery life) and the only real downside for me will be the loss of the 2 extra ports.. I don't often need more than 2 but as stated by several here, it's nice to have the option...

    The TB is a non starter for me because I view it as useless... Maybe a few years from now once it becomes more mainstream I'll see a use for it but I don't see any value whatsoever in it right now..
     
  12. kb3uru macrumors newbie

    kb3uru

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    Dec 9, 2016
    Location:
    Halethorpe
    #12
    Coming from a user who had both, I decided to take back the TB and stick with the NTB. Adobe recently updated the CC software in photoshop for use with the toucher, and wasn't impressed. From my use of Lightroom and Photoshop on the ntb, it runs perfectly fine IMO. Then again I don't mind waiting a few extra seconds for something to process. Are you going to be using this strictly as a laptop. or are you going to be plugging into external monitors and multiple hard drives?
     
  13. Ilzx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Ilzx

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    #13
    I personally have an 2011 imac for a desktop, so I'm no stranger to MacOS. But the mbp would definitely be a huge step up from the Asus! Wouldn't 16GB RAM be a little too overkill?
    --- Post Merged, Dec 17, 2016 ---
    I will be bringing it around with me for classes, but when at home it will be plugged into an external display and probably just one ssd.
    --- Post Merged, Dec 17, 2016 ---
    Did your tb still have battery issues after the 10.12.2 update? But wouldnt going to the ntb be a huge drop in processor speed? Judging that the tb goes at 2.9ghz and the ntb goes at 2.0ghz.
     
  14. mrex macrumors 68020

    mrex

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    Jul 16, 2014
    Location:
    europe
    #14
    And those programs have osx version too?
     
  15. Ilzx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Ilzx

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    Dec 16, 2016
    #15
    Yes they do have Mac versions
     
  16. skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

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    Mar 24, 2011
    #16


    Depends on how you look at it..Do you "need" the 16 imminently for your day to day work, No. But if you plan to the keep the laptop for a while then I'd say the 16GB starts to show it's value a year or two or three down the road. Software always becomes more demanding, and the includes OSX. As they update and add functionality it draws more from the computer. So as that continuum of software progresses your hardware stays the same, so it's nice to have some headroom.

    For the extra $200 or so (which anyone looking at laptops this expensive probably has) I'd say it's the best upgrade you can make to the computer since you can always control storage, and CPUs are honestly a non factor these days, but you can NEVER upgrade the RAM in these machines. So if it were me I'd say go for it and get the 16gb and no it's not overkill. But depends on how you approach tech in your life. So the rest is up to you!
     
  17. iizmoo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    #17
    OP is a student, if OP in US, the RAM upgrade is $180.

    No, 16GB of RAM is not overkill. I used to have a 2013 MBA with 8GB, whenever I opened up several large graphic files for editing in Pixelmator (a lighter competitor to Photoshop), sometimes it would crash the program, and the only reason it did was because I only had 8GB of RAM. CPU might have been fine, but doing some tasks like editing multiple very large photoshop files does present a problem if one doesn't have enough RAM.

    I have the nTB. The 2.9Ghz was ~3-4% faster. That faster speed will only count when you're clocking in at 90-100% CPU for a sustained period of time. When you're not using the CPU to near max, it's just wasted. Total time CPU run at 100%, is < 1% of the time for me.

    As for the 4 vs 2 ports thing. Seriously consider when was the last time you had a ton of stuff hooked up to a laptop? For me, that was less than 0.1% of the time. And when I do have stuff sticking out (that isn't a power cable), the peripherals tend to be USB3, in which case I need to plug my mini USB hub in.
     
  18. raqball macrumors 6502a

    raqball

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2016
    Location:
    California
    #18
    Yes still battery issues after the update. There is only a minor difference between the 2.9 and the 2.0 CPU's. You can look at benchmarks to get an idea.. The GPU in the TB is also a minor upgrade. The question is are these minor upgrades worth the extra $$$$? If you want the TB then they are. If the TB does nothing for you then they are probably not worth the money..
     
  19. Ilzx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Ilzx

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    #19
    So from what I gather, an upgrade to 16gb ram would be more beneficial than a processor speed of 2.9ghz?

    What if I bumped up the processor on the ntb to the i7 2.4ghz? Would that be worth or nah?
     
  20. Salaryman Ryan macrumors member

    Salaryman Ryan

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2015
    #20
    Usually it is the lowest end that has the least depreciation. Perhaps it is different this time but considering the recent Macbook Pros are not upgradeable and essentially disposable it will be interesting to see how the second hand market will react to this the next three years.
    Another factor to consider to is if the next refresh we will see Apple lower prices and increase value of this line. If this happens say goodbye to resale values regardless what model you own. This usually happens to the first generation of their lines most notable are the original Macbook Air and the first generation retina.
     
  21. Ilzx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Ilzx

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    #21
    I don't think I will be reselling my MacBook if I get it though. Will most probably use it till its reached its end then get a new one, so resell price won't matter much to me. I'm more concerned about which laptop will be more suited to my usage.
     
  22. EIdoradoSZ macrumors newbie

    EIdoradoSZ

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2016
    #22
    If you don't consider the resale value, then maybe you should go for the nTB. Currently, I've been using TB for 2 plus week, and I hate it, rarely found the touch bar ever usable, lack of 3rd party apps' support and even they does, it's just practically un-predicable, even worse it distracting, most of the times, I just ignored its existence (except for the touch ID of sure, touch ID rocks). And the battery life is far less than the nTB version, only hit 4-6 hours the most in minor web surfing. I had performed several iTunes local 1080p vid playing test at the 75% brightness. Never exceed 6 hours. For the ports that never been an issue, I use Apple's multimedia USB-C adapter (hdmi+usb+usb-c charger) with a 7-ports USB 3.0 HUB with DC supply, and a 20$ usb3.0-ethernet adapter for connecting to my NAS, all set. For the performance, if you ever saw ARS review it is only a 5-10% gap. And the IFFIX‘s teardown test indicated that the TB MBP is the hardest model to be repaired or to replace parts if there are any hardware failure, this will potentially reduce the resale value considering the unremovable SSD drive's lifespan left. On the contrary, the nTB version has more simple internal structure and a removable SSD drive. It's got 10+ hours battery life for sure. I'm considering to return my TB MBP and reorder the nTB+16G RAM version.
     
  23. person123 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2010
    #23
    how did the battery fair?
    --- Post Merged, Jan 7, 2017 ---
    you tested it? 10+?
    --- Post Merged, Jan 7, 2017 ---
    hows your ntb battery?
     
  24. skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    #24
    I'd say for your use the nTB will be fine, but always upgrade the ram whatever machine you get.

    With that said, my TB battery is great, I get a solid 8-9 to hours everyday. I basically open and close the lid for two days straight before I have to recharge it. Thats light usage, Safari, youtube, iTunes etc. If I do something intense then it drains quicker but thats any laptop, including the nTB. A few folks on these forums using the beta of the 10.12.3 have noted an increase in battery life as well. So once thats released, assuming thats true there should be further improvements.
     
  25. Wildkraut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2015
    Location:
    Germany
    #25
    Well I got the 15" version which only exists with touchbar, but I already miss the touchbar when im on the 27" iMac or on a other computer. It's simply a pleasure to use it, and ads a lot of comfort once you get used to it, but everybody is different.
    TouchID rules, too.

    I have no issues with the battery at all.
    Using macOS 10.12.2
     

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