Practical differences between macbooks

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Samtb, Jan 9, 2015.

  1. Samtb macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013
    What are the practical differences between all the MacBooks without the apple marketing? How do you decide which one to get?
  2. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    You look at the specs and then you try them out a bit.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I figure out my needs and see which one best fits it.

    I want a larger display, and/or quad core processors, that means a 15" MBP for me.
  4. BasicGreatGuy Contributor


    Sep 21, 2012
    In the middle of several books.
    1) Determine what your current day to day computing needs are (re: programs currently used and manner of using the internet in general)

    2) Look at the different MacBook Pros on the Apple website to get an idea of the technical aspects of each model.

    3) Go to Apple store (or similar place) so that you can view the models up close and can experiment with each one.

    4) Determine budget and compare it to the model(s) that best suit your needs.

    5) Purchase Mac based on the aforementioned considerations.
  5. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    I get one powerful enough for my needs. That's how everyone should be buying a computer in the first place.
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Simple really

    Air: low power dual core, very light, very slim, stupid long battery life. Unfortunately screen a bit out of date probably best to avoid until it gets a retina screen. However it is cheaper and will run almost any day to day software you throw at it. ok for casual gaming.

    rMBP 13; much like the air to be honest but with better connectivity, better CPU and GPU and a fantastic screen that makes this the best all round day to day laptop available at the moment in my eyes. Still thin and light but the battery life takes a bit of a hit.

    rMBP 15; this is your desktop replacement screaming fast quadcore processors good graphics amazing screen. A must for those wanting desktop like performance and screen real estate on the road.

    rMBP 15 with NVIDIA graphics: As the other 15 inch but a must for those rendering 4K video, and using CUDA enabled apps extensively and playing modern games at a decent level.

    Hope that helps...
  7. Samtb thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013
    So basically performance vs portability?
  8. Jesla macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2013
    Tennessee USA
    The 13" Pro or Air will probably cover most people's needs......
    ...Just pick more power or more battery, Personally I went for the
    Pro due to the Retina screen. I'm sure either would do the job for
  9. newellj, Jan 9, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2015

    newellj macrumors 603

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    Really oversimplified?

    1. Size? 15" is too big for daily carry. 11" is practically an iPad, not big enough for working on a couple of documents at the same time. 13" - best compromise. (This is all my opinion, obviously.)

    2. Screen? The Air screen looks like roadkill. (That's my opinion and it's an overstatement, but I really did not like it.) The retina MBP screen was great, and best at full resolution.

    3. Weight? The 13" rMBP weighs only a little more than the 13" Air, so no reason to re-evaluate 1 and 2.

    4. Cost? The Air is cheaper but the rMBP was no prohibitively expensive, so no need to re-think 1, 2 and 3.

    YMMV (both on what's important and how you slice the facts) but those are the big four for me.
  10. Samtb thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013
    I already have an iPad so I just want something that can replace my old laptop. Is the 13 inch still much larger than the iPad screen?
  11. luvmymbpr macrumors regular


    Mar 6, 2014
    Since you can't upgrade a MacBook at all, I went for the top of the line 15. I plan to keep it for 3+ years. The 13 is great for portability, but I took the 15 all over Europe. The size and weight are still great for traveling.
  12. TRC-WA macrumors regular

    Sep 26, 2014
    My 13" MacBook Air didn't have:

    15" retina display
    2.2 quad core i7
    16 GB ram
    256 GB SSD

    So I bought one that did.
  13. Freyqq macrumors 601

    Dec 13, 2004
    macbook air:
    -better battery life
    -mediocre screen
    -low power CPU, so slower than the pros

    macbook pro r13:
    -retina 13" screen
    -dual core CPU

    macbook pro r15 with igpu:
    -retina 15" screen
    -quad core CPU

    macbook pro r15 with dgpu:
    -retina 15" screen
    -quad core CPU
    -switchable, more powerful graphics

    RAM and SSD size depend on your needs. I wouldn't go with less than 8gb of RAM for any usage case anymore. If you can live with putting all your media on an external USB 3 hard drive, a small SSD is enough.
  14. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816


    Apr 19, 2014
  15. Samtb thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013
    Which would be best for home and on the go entertainment including Hd movies, music, casual gaming.
  16. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    I'd say the 13" rMBP with 8gb RAM and probably the 256gb SSD. I have the late-2013. The only difference between it and the mid-2014 is a very slight bump in processor speed. I used mine for school work, watching movies (HD and SD), and music. I can't speak for gaming, but it could probably handle causal gaming.
  17. Samtb thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013
    Are 13 inch notebooks more popular than 15 inch now?
  18. Samtb thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013
    Also I just noticed why are the MacBooks about double the price of a dell notebook of the same specs. What are you paying extra for?
  19. ann713 macrumors 65816

    Nov 30, 2008

    Design and built quality in my opinion. Customer support is also superb, as I can stop by an Apple Store for troubleshooting. Just a few reasons why I'll continue buying apple.
  20. Toutou macrumors 6502a


    Jan 6, 2015
    Prague, Czech Republic
    Pick and post an example. That Macbooks are double the price of a comparable Windows machine is a myth. It's not about the specs entirely. You pay for the design and build quality, the specs, the OS and pre-installed software, for the support and then maybe a little bit for the brand.
  21. Samtb thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2013

    I can't tell the difference between this dell machine and the rmbp 15 inch.
  22. alex0002 macrumors 6502

    Jun 19, 2013
    New Zealand
    The one that you linked to appears to have 5400 rpm HDD with cache vs PCIe SSD storage in rmbp 15.

  23. chabig macrumors 601

    Sep 6, 2002
    Isn't that Dell $1500, and the MacBook Pro is $1999? Hardly double.
  24. leman, Jan 10, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2015

    leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Then you must be blind. The 15 retina MBP has a much faster storage and a 40% larger battery (which translates to more than 2x real usable time on battery ).

    Price and feature set do not scale linearly. Every increase in multi-purpose functionality beyond a certain point is going to cost you extra (and it does not matter whether the company is called Apple or Dell). Its you who needs to decide whether its worth it or not. We certainly can't do it for our.
  25. newellj macrumors 603

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    They aren't. If you do (pardon the pun) and Apple to apples comparison (i.e., configure the Dell the same way), they're the same cost. Since the Mac is better made and has much better warranty coverage in real life, the Mac is a better value.

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