New basic 2017 MBA or refurb 2015 MBP 15?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by GoldfishRT, Jan 2, 2019.

  1. GoldfishRT macrumors 6502


    Jul 24, 2014
    So after trying pretty much every Windows PC option I thought was appealing I've been left very dissatisfied overall. Sadly, Apple doesn't offer a ton that I'm super interested in either. Please consider this question as if these are the only two options available -

    2017 MacBook Air 13" - base config - $849

    2015 MacBook Pro 15" - refurbished - $1699

    Obviously the display on the MacBook Pro is way way better. I'm mostly concerned about longevity on both the machines. I do not do anything particularly intensive and this machine will end up being used for casual home use so the value of the MacBook Pro in this situation is the much better screen and speakers and horsepower for the future if Apple continues to support it. If I buy the MacBook Air I would likely buy a local used ThunderBolt display for $200 to use at my desk. If I buy the MacBook Pro I would forgo the external monitor. The portability of the Air is extremely appealing as I'm an avid couch surfer. The lower storage is a bit of a pain but both will often be connected to a 2TB external drive.

    Just looking for some input on anything I may have missed. To be frank the MacBook Pro is my dream machine however I am reasonably price sensitive. If it's not going to be supported for more than 3 years it's probably not worth double the money to me.
  2. Nbd1790 macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2017
    New York
    Depends on what you intend to use it for and what hardware configurations are most important to you (hard drive size, processing power and RAM) I typically would recommend a Macbook Pro over an Air for some obvious reasons such as screen resolution and processing power. Although, if you're going to be using this as an "at home" machine for reading stuff on websites, checking email and maybe some word processing, almost any Macbook Air would do. If you intend on getting into some more intensive CPU tasks such as Photo/Video work or audio work, I would have to strongly encourage you to go the macbook pro route.

    The only thing I would highly recommend doing regardless is shooting for a model with a decent sized hard drive (ballpark 500gb or so) You would be surprised at how quickly you'll run out of space on a 256gb model even if you're only keeping the bare necessities on it.
  3. Mikael H macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2014
    Ignoring your request to ignore other options, you can get a brand new Air with 256 GB SSD storage at a price point smack in the middle between these two models: Nice and light AND a much nicer screen than the old Air design.

    As for your actual question:
    When it comes to support, there are naturally no guarantees for other products, but my wife's 2010 15" MBP still receives software updates. The last few times Apple stopped supporting Macs, to my knowledge they only stopped supporting machines that contained hardware that wouldn't run 64-bit software, and that transition is done now. My prediction is that unless relations between the companies thaw, the next hardware sunsetting might consist of dropped support for native Nvidia drivers at some point in the near future, but the 2015 MBPr has AMD graphics, so that wouldn't affect it.

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