New 13" MacBook Pro nTB

Apples555

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 4, 2012
168
21
Hi,

I'm buying a new MacBook. It appears the nTB 13" is unchanged from mid-2017. Is this true? Should I wait? Should I go used?
 

R.Stoychev

macrumors 6502a
Dec 23, 2012
731
24
Yes it's true and if the specs are enough for your use go for it. But IMO if you want a 13 inch macbook pro go for a 2018.
 

retta283

macrumors 68000
Jun 8, 2018
1,828
1,616
Kingman, AZ
IMO if you're not interested in the touchbar just go with the 2015, since you're not going to have keyboard failure. If the touchbar doesn't matter I'd just go up to the 2018.
 

AppleHaterLover

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2018
2,036
2,041
IMO if you're not interested in the touchbar just go with the 2015
And have a Staingate-infested 4-year-old jurassic relic?


The 2017 is not quite good value at full price, but you can easily get it down to $1100 or thereabouts at Best Buy physical stores etc. Plus it's a very solid laptop (even if its performance is not exactly mind-blowing).

2018 refurbs are also a good idea.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ascender

Cashmonee

macrumors 65816
May 27, 2006
1,196
876
Hi,

I'm buying a new MacBook. It appears the nTB 13" is unchanged from mid-2017. Is this true? Should I wait? Should I go used?
I would be tempted to look at the MacBook Air at that price range. The performance will be a little less but you would get TouchID and thinner/lighter plus the 3rd gen keyboard. The nTB MacBook Pro is a pretty tough sell at this point. The TB version is significantly faster in multi-core and offers a bit better value probably overall. I think the nTB is due for discontinuation which is why it was not updated last year. If budget is a concern and you need the most power you can get for the money, it might make sense.
 

Porkchop Sandwich

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2017
243
141
I'd have to look for my receipt from the time, but if I recall I acquired a top spec 13" mbp in 2013 and 2014 respectively (from Apple store stock / not bto) - I seem to recall I paid anywhere from 1800-2K.

What does the top spec (standard in-store offering) cost today? - $1999

How has the tb increased the cost of a mbp?

(maybe my memory's off??)
 

Apples555

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 4, 2012
168
21
I just went to Apple's website and picked the notebook style I liked. I don't need extreme thinness at the cost of performance as in the Air. I guess if I have to get the touch bar I'll get it.

I think the nTB is due for discontinuation which is why it was not updated last year.
Sure seems that way.

I'm upgrading from a reliable 2010 13" MacBook Pro that I also bought new. It cost $1200 I think. I'd like to spend up to $1500. I find that above that there are diminishing returns, and I could drop it, lose it etc.

In a nutshell, I'm looking for the computer Apple will support with MacOS updates the longest, which translates to a powerful computer. Is the keyboard really that much of an issue? I tried it, and it doesn't feel too bad at least.

Should I wait until the 2019 models come out?

Thanks.
 

Cashmonee

macrumors 65816
May 27, 2006
1,196
876
I'd have to look for my receipt from the time, but if I recall I acquired a top spec 13" mbp in 2013 and 2014 respectively (from Apple store stock / not bto) - I seem to recall I paid anywhere from 1800-2K.

What does the top spec (standard in-store offering) cost today? - $1999

How has the tb increased the cost of a mbp?

(maybe my memory's off??)
My midrange 2013 (i5/8GB/256GB) ran $1499. I would consider the parallel to be the 2018 i5/8GB/256 which runs $1799. You could make the argument that the 2018 should be stepped up to 16GB of RAM since the 8GB in 2013 was an upgrade. That bumps the price to $1999. Accounting for inflation, that 2013 would cost $1619 in 2019 dollars. So you are looking at anywhere from $180 to $380 price increase over 5 years.
 

Porkchop Sandwich

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2017
243
141
2.png
1.png


Screen shots of the receipts - I 'think' both computers had i7 processors but of course, dual core. Here we are with the 2018 model and of course the top tier 13" (non bto) has an i5 but, it's quad-core. I just don't see the criticism. Fact: the tb has NOT increased the price of a mbp, at least on the 13" top spec. (save a variable for i5/i7, I guess but to me it's a wash) Actually, factoring inflation, the cost of a 13" mbp has decreased. That's a fact. What am I missing here?

Apple's 13" mbp is a wonderful computer, and always has been. JMO
 
Last edited:

Cashmonee

macrumors 65816
May 27, 2006
1,196
876
View attachment 822098 View attachment 822099

Screen shots of the receipts - I 'think' both computers had i7 processors but of course, dual core. Here we are with the 2018 model and of course the top tier 13" (non bto) has an i5 but, it's quad-core. I just don't see the criticism. Fact: the tb has NOT increased the price of a mbp, at least on the 13" top spec. (save a variable for i5/i7, I guess but to me it's a wash) Actually, factoring inflation, the cost of a 13" mbp has decreased. That's a fact. What am I missing here?

Apple's 13" mbp is a wonderful computer, and always has been. JMO
So your 2013 appears to be upgraded to the faster i5 (mine is a 2.4) and 512 GB SSD. Your 2014 is an i7/512GB. It can be difficult to match things like this up when the machines are 4 or 5 years apart. Suffice it to say that neither of your machines would be considered a "base" model and you 2014 is actually pretty heavily upgraded. The closest parallels from the 2018 crop in my opinion would be the i5/16GB/512GB for the 2013 and the i7/16GB/512GB for the 2014. Those would be $2199 and $2499 respectively, a difference of $400 ($250 adjusted for inflation) and $500 ($345 adjusted). In my opinion, these are the machines that a person who bought what you bought at that time would look at now. Now you could say the 8GB versions are closer in spec and that would change the price to $1999 and $2299. Still an increase of $200 ($60 adjusted) and $300 ($175 adjusted) respectively and at that point you are talking about a more upgraded machine in the 2013 and 2014 compared to a nearly base 2018. I think you are comparing upgraded machines to stock machines.

The better way to look at it is at the absolute base level. A base level 2013 and 2014 was $1299 ($1400 in 2019 dollars). A base level TouchBar today is $1799. That is a $400 difference after adjusting for inflation. I think there is no question a 2018 MacBook Pro is more expensive. I say this as someone who has a 2018 13" with an i7 and 1TB SSD that I absolutely love.
 

Porkchop Sandwich

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2017
243
141
So your 2013 appears to be upgraded to the faster i5 (mine is a 2.4) and 512 GB SSD. Your 2014 is an i7/512GB. It can be difficult to match things like this up when the machines are 4 or 5 years apart. Suffice it to say that neither of your machines would be considered a "base" model and you 2014 is actually pretty heavily upgraded. The closest parallels from the 2018 crop in my opinion would be the i5/16GB/512GB for the 2013 and the i7/16GB/512GB for the 2014. Those would be $2199 and $2499 respectively, a difference of $400 ($250 adjusted for inflation) and $500 ($345 adjusted). In my opinion, these are the machines that a person who bought what you bought at that time would look at now. Now you could say the 8GB versions are closer in spec and that would change the price to $1999 and $2299. Still an increase of $200 ($60 adjusted) and $300 ($175 adjusted) respectively and at that point you are talking about a more upgraded machine in the 2013 and 2014 compared to a nearly base 2018. I think you are comparing upgraded machines to stock machines.

The better way to look at it is at the absolute base level. A base level 2013 and 2014 was $1299 ($1400 in 2019 dollars). A base level TouchBar today is $1799. That is a $400 difference after adjusting for inflation. I think there is no question a 2018 MacBook Pro is more expensive. I say this as someone who has a 2018 13" with an i7 and 1TB SSD that I absolutely love.
Nah..somehow the point isn't coming across.

In 2013 if you walked into an Apple store and selected the top spec 13" mbp that Apple offered, you would pay $1799.00

In 2014 if you walked into an Apple store and selected the top spec 13" mbp that Apple offered, you would pay $1999.00

In 2018/2019 if you walk into an Apple store and select the top spec 13" mbp at Apple offers, you will pay $1999.00

--

In my opinion, the mid 2018 13" mbp is by far the nicest 13" mbp that Apple has ever offered and, it's cheaper than it used to be - that's a simple fact. YMMV
 

Cashmonee

macrumors 65816
May 27, 2006
1,196
876
Nah..somehow the point isn't coming across.

In 2013 if you walked into an Apple store and selected the top spec 13" mbp that Apple offered, you would pay $1799.00

In 2014 if you walked into an Apple store and selected the top spec 13" mbp that Apple offered, you would pay $1999.00

In 2018/2019 if you walk into an Apple store and select the top spec 13" mbp at Apple offers, you will pay $1999.00

--

In my opinion, the mid 2018 13" mbp is by far the nicest 13" mbp that Apple has ever offered and, it's cheaper than it used to be - that's a simple fact. YMMV
Right, but the problem with that is Apple has changed what specs are available in store these days and have actively pushed people to buying online including offering more desirable options as CTO only. In 2013, the most desirable 13" MBP was an in-store option. That is not the case in 2018. You cannot simply just compare what was available in stock 4 or 5 years ago to what is available in stock today. It is apples and oranges, which is why you need to look at the base model to truly get a comparison.

I mean you can say something is a fact all you want, but you are comparing upgraded machines (processor, RAM, and SSD all are upgraded in your 2013 and 2014) to a machine that only has an upgraded SSD. If you add the same upgrades in 2018 that you added in 2013 and 2014, you get the prices I have been quoting.
 

Porkchop Sandwich

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2017
243
141
Argue all you want, but find someone else to do that with. I'm sorry that I see it differently. Today's top spec, off the shelf, 13" mbp outperforms, and has more features than yesteryears top spec, off the shelf 13" mbp. And, it's cheaper.

Good luck and I hope your mbp serves you well..they're super nice computers!
 

Apples555

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 4, 2012
168
21
Thanks, I think I'll wait. I like physical keys.

I was also hoping for owners to vent their frustrations in this thread i.e. about the keyboard, but it seems that those are isolated cases and that new MBPs are as good as they always were.
 
Last edited:

Cashmonee

macrumors 65816
May 27, 2006
1,196
876
So should I wait? Do you think the nTB will be updated?
No one has any idea. I personally would say that it is not a good sign that it was not updated last year. In the past when one machine in a product line has not been updated, it means that machine is no longer going to be updated and it is a holdover that usually exists to hit a price point. Having said that, no one knows if that is the case with the nTB or not. If the TB versions receive another update and the nTB does not, then you will have your answer.

If I were to bet, I would say it is unlikely the nTB gets updated again, but that is pure speculation.
 

Porkchop Sandwich

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2017
243
141
If I was concerned about the TB or wanted to acquire a mbp at what is one heck of a bargain, I don't think I'd ever hesitate for a moment to acquire the current nTB mbp.

You can look at paper specs all day long, but in the end, it's day to day performance that matters to most of the people on this planet. I'd guess the nTB mbp would fill 99% of the needs for someone not doing any heavy video editing or heavy music production.

Keyboard issues? There's a four year program to address that should it ever be a problem for you plus, not to diminish anyone's frustration dealing with such an issue but, I'd wager the odds are in favor of having a trouble free keyboard, not the other way around. Good luck to you.
 

alex87f

macrumors newbie
Jun 24, 2015
22
12
Brussels, Belgium
And have a Staingate-infested 4-year-old jurassic relic?

The 2017 is not quite good value at full price, but you can easily get it down to $1100 or thereabouts at Best Buy physical stores etc. Plus it's a very solid laptop (even if its performance is not exactly mind-blowing).

2018 refurbs are also a good idea.
The performance bump between a current gen nTB MBP and an base early '15 is significant but not mind-blowing (about 20%). And he'd probably pay half as much and not have to worry about all the issues the current gen faces.
 

AppleHaterLover

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2018
2,036
2,041
The performance bump between a current gen nTB MBP and an base early '15 is significant but not mind-blowing (about 20%). And he'd probably pay half as much and not have to worry about all the issues the current gen faces.
The difference according to Geekbench is 20% single core, 30% dual core.

But this is not a good comparison - you'd be comparing a new $1100 notebook vs. a $500 notebook that's used, heavier, has a worse screen, battery life, speakers, graphics and will be at least 3 years old - and will not be covered for Staingate issues in just a few years.
 

Apples555

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 4, 2012
168
21
I really don't want a used computer. The biggest detractor with the nTB is that it hasn't changed for 2 years, not the specs. I want the latest components, so it's best for me to wait. I hope Apple updates the nTB, because I just don't see a use for the TB. If they discontinue the nTB, I guess I'll find some use for the silly TB.

When I bought my 2010, I had the same thought process. Initially I bought the 2009 model, then exchanged it for the 2010 when it came out. The 2010 got 2 more years of MacOS support than the 2009, even though the performance difference between them was marginal.

MacOS is unparalleled IMO, and what I'm buying the computer for really.
 

Porkchop Sandwich

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2017
243
141
I really don't want a used computer. The biggest detractor with the nTB is that it hasn't changed for 2 years, not the specs. I want the latest components, so it's best for me to wait. I hope Apple updates the nTB, because I just don't see a use for the TB. If they discontinue the nTB, I guess I'll find some use for the silly TB.

When I bought my 2010, I had the same thought process. Initially I bought the 2009 model, then exchanged it for the 2010 when it came out. The 2010 got 2 more years of MacOS support than the 2009, even though the performance difference between them was marginal.

MacOS is unparalleled IMO, and what I'm buying the computer for really.
I agree, MacOS is unparalleled. It would be nice if Apple did update the nTB so that people still maintain a choice to opt out of the tb (I personally like the tb but could live w/out it) and also don't feel as though they are compromising on what Apple offers as its latest pc of kit. At the end of the day though, realistically, the 2017 nTB is the equal, and more to any 13" mbp which preceded it, so there is that. Frankly, at 1200 bucks, if you don't need alot of storage space, that's alot of computer in a great form factor and a beautifully made computer for the dough. JMO..Once again, good luck.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.