Refurb 13" 2015 Pro or refurb 15" 2015 Pro?

JerTheGeek

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Im currently in the process of upgrading my 2014 MacBook Air to a retina MBP. I am planning on getting an Apple refurb 13" (2015). But I've seen some good deals on the 2013 15" rMBP on ebay, from a seemingly reliable source that refurbishes them. With a quad core processor would it be a better choice?
 

gngan

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Of course quad core processor will always be better but are you even using it? If you are just web surfing and documents then you are paying things that you are not using. In fact, your MBA is more than capable of doing this.

You aren't providing enough information on what's the best choice for YOU.
 

JerTheGeek

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Of course quad core processor will always be better but are you even using it? If you are just web surfing and documents then you are paying things that you are not using. In fact, your MBA is more than capable of doing this.

You aren't providing enough information on what's the best choice for YOU.
Yeah sorry about that forgot to mention what I do. I do video editing in iMovie for my YT channel and other stuff. Other than that I do just average stuff that doesn't need a quad core processor. My biggest question is, would the quad core from 2013 be better than the dual core from 2015? Would it be worth buying a used model from 2 years earlier to gain the extra performance? Or would the performance even be that much different?
 

gngan

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Yeah sorry about that forgot to mention what I do. I do video editing in iMovie for my YT channel and other stuff. Other than that I do just average stuff that doesn't need a quad core processor. My biggest question is, would the quad core from 2013 be better than the dual core from 2015? Would it be worth buying a used model from 2 years earlier to gain the extra performance? Or would the performance even be that much different?
If you are just doing YouTube video then the 13’’ is more than enough moreover; it comes with Apple Care. I would suggest the used 15’’ if you are into more serious video stuff.

Are you having issue with your MBA? It should be capable of doing video editing though it may take longer.
 
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JerTheGeek

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If you are just doing YouTube video then the 13’’ is more than enough moreover; it comes with Apple Care. I would suggest the used 15’’ if you are into more serious video stuff.

Are you having issue with your MBA? It should be capable of doing video editing though it may take longer.
It is ok with video editing but I want the Retina display, so that's why I'm upgrading.
 

gngan

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It is ok with video editing but I want the Retina display, so that's why I'm upgrading.
Right... so it's not about quad or dual core. It's confusing because your OP mentioned that and makes it sound like you are worry about performance. If your MBA is ok with video editing then any of the MBP (13' or 15') is enough too. If I were you then I would go with the refurb. because it has Apple Care.
 

JerTheGeek

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Right... so it's not about quad or dual core. It's confusing because your OP mentioned that and makes it sound like you are worry about performance. If your MBA is ok with video editing then any of the MBP (13' or 15') is enough too. If I were you then I would go with the refurb. because it has Apple Care.
Yeah that is what I think I'll do. The warranty will be worth it. Plus the force touch trackpad.
 

Fishrrman

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Apple refurb is the first choice.

You get a 1-year warranty, almost-the-same as "new".

From ebay? Who knows...?
 

MrGimper

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I upgraded my 13" 2012 MBA i7/8GB/512GB to a 2014 rMBP i5/16GB/1TB end of 2014. It was a refurb and I saved quite a bit. Before the warranty was up I got AppleCare on it via eBay. If any Apple device I wanted was available as a refurb, I'd buy it from there before anywhere else, even new from Apple.
[doublepost=1460734711][/doublepost]Also depends where in the world you are as most of the cheaper machines on eBay here in the UK are US spec machines.
 

JerTheGeek

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Just found an even better deal on a 2014 15 inches that looks almost perfect. About same price as a refurb 13" 2015. At this point would the extra screen be nicer? Is the 2015 much better than the 2014?
 

matt_on_a_mtn

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Why not get the 2014 or 2015 base 15" refurb direct from Apple? Buying used from eBay, or refurbished from a private seller is far less desirable than direct from Apple where a refurb is essentially brand new. I'm not sure what model 13" you're looking at, but the base 15" models aren't all that bad on the refurb side.
 

JerTheGeek

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Why not get the 2014 or 2015 base 15" refurb direct from Apple? Buying used from eBay, or refurbished from a private seller is far less desirable than direct from Apple where a refurb is essentially brand new. I'm not sure what model 13" you're looking at, but the base 15" models aren't all that bad on the refurb side.
I'm looking at the 2015 13" Pro with 512Gb, and that is $1529 refurb from Apple. The 15" with the same storage is definitely more expensive, the 13" is about the top of my budget.
 

matt_on_a_mtn

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I'm looking at the 2015 13" Pro with 512Gb, and that is $1529 refurb from Apple. The 15" with the same storage is definitely more expensive, the 13" is about the top of my budget.
The base model 2015 15" comes in at just a bit more than that - though with 256GB. Personally, I'd rather have the extra screen space, 16GB RAM, and quad core i7 than the storage, but that's for my needs and the storage may be a must for you.

EDIT: Looking at the refurb store, they've got the 2014 15" for $80 more than the 13" you're looking at. That's the one I'd personally go with. You gain a much more powerful processor, twice the RAM, more screen real estate, and a more powerful integrated GPU.

EDIT x2: A quick search on Geekbench puts the base model 15" at roughly twice the score of the 13" you're looking at. While your usage may not require that kind of power today, looking long term it's definitely more future proof - something to keep in mind when dropping $1500-1600!
 
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JerTheGeek

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The base model 2015 15" comes in at just a bit more than that - though with 256GB. Personally, I'd rather have the extra screen space, 16GB RAM, and quad core i7 than the storage, but that's for my needs and the storage may be a must for you.

EDIT: Looking at the refurb store, they've got the 2014 15" for $80 more than the 13" you're looking at. That's the one I'd personally go with. You gain a much more powerful processor, twice the RAM, more screen real estate, and a more powerful integrated GPU.
That does look like a good deal for sure. Only thing is, will the fact that it's a year older make a difference? Is the Force Touch trackpad a big deal? Was kinda thinking it was but maybe not. And would giving up the onboard storage be worth the extra power and screen real estate?
Hmmmm....
 

matt_on_a_mtn

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That does look like a good deal for sure. Only thing is, will the fact that it's a year older make a difference? Is the Force Touch trackpad a big deal? Was kinda thinking it was but maybe not. And would giving up the onboard storage be worth the extra power and screen real estate?
Hmmmm....
I bought the 2015 upper spec 15". It's a great machine, but if I were going for the base model and doing so on a budget, I hands down would buy the 2014. Force Touch has minimal applications, and the computer is essentially identical otherwise. The trackpad upgrade is nice, but honestly not drastically different. The 2015 has a faster SSD, but you won't really see that performance unless you're moving large files around on the SSD itself, as most USB transfer rates cap off way below it.

I'd say the 2015 model is worth the extra bit over the 2014, but in the same breath I don't think you'll be missing anything by going with the 2014 to save a bit - especially if it's only the force touch trackpad that's apparent.
 
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JerTheGeek

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I bought the 2015 upper spec 15". It's a great machine, but if I were going for the base model and doing so on a budget, I hands down would buy the 2014. Force Touch has minimal applications, and the computer is essentially identical otherwise. The trackpad upgrade is nice, but honestly not drastically different. The 2015 has a faster SSD, but you won't really see that performance unless you're moving large files around on the SSD itself, as most USB transfer rates cap off way below it.

I'd say the 2015 model is worth the extra bit over the 2014, but in the same breath I don't think you'll be missing anything by going with the 2014 to save a bit - especially if it's only the force touch trackpad that's apparent.
Well actually I've figured I can afford the 2015 15". Just have to decide if the storage will be ok.
[doublepost=1460776229][/doublepost]
EDIT x2: A quick search on Geekbench puts the base model 15" at roughly twice the score of the 13" you're looking at. While your usage may not require that kind of power today, looking long term it's definitely more future proof - something to keep in mind when dropping $1500-1600!
That is pretty incredible. That's a heck of a lot of power and definitely would be future proof.
 

matt_on_a_mtn

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Well actually I've figured I can afford the 2015 15". Just have to decide if the storage will be ok.
[doublepost=1460776229][/doublepost]
That is pretty incredible. That's a heck of a lot of power and definitely would be future proof.
If you can swing the base 2015, I wouldn't hesitate. It's a solid machine and should easily last you years. It also has the latest features, and in terms of resale down the road it'll hold value better for at least a year.

Also worth noting - I went with more memory on mine (512), thinking I'd need it for sure. After loading up all my music, files, apps, and games, even on the 256 I'd still have a solid 100GB open. In the long term I'll probably use more, but overall it's probably more than I need. As I needed the dGPU it was part of the deal, but even so, it's worth figuring out your actual needs for what's stored on the MacBook Pro. For me it was less than anticipated without giving anything up.

But being perfectly honest - the amount of power you get for the trade off is totally worth it. You can get a nice USB drive that's 1-2 TB and small enough to slip in a bag for well under $100. But we're talking about a 6500 Geekbench score on the 13" vs a 13000 score on the 15". That kind of power will last you years, and that big screen is glorious.

RAM is something to consider as well. 8GB in the 13" isn't bad, but it's all you'll get on the machine. The 16GB on the 15" is overkill for most things, but paired with that beast of a processor it will give you a lot more longevity and ensures you've got RAM for future needs.
 
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JerTheGeek

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If you can swing the base 2015, I wouldn't hesitate. It's a solid machine and should easily last you years. It also has the latest features, and in terms of resale down the road it'll hold value better for at least a year.

Also worth noting - I went with more memory on mine (512), thinking I'd need it for sure. After loading up all my music, files, apps, and games, even on the 256 I'd still have a solid 100GB open. In the long term I'll probably use more, but overall it's probably more than I need. As I needed the dGPU it was part of the deal, but even so, it's worth figuring out your actual needs for what's stored on the MacBook Pro. For me it was less than anticipated without giving anything up.

But being perfectly honest - the amount of power you get for the trade off is totally worth it. You can get a nice USB drive that's 1-2 TB and small enough to slip in a bag for well under $100. But we're talking about a 6500 Geekbench score on the 13" vs a 13000 score on the 15". That kind of power will last you years, and that big screen is glorious.

RAM is something to consider as well. 8GB in the 13" isn't bad, but it's all you'll get on the machine. The 16GB on the 15" is overkill for most things, but paired with that beast of a processor it will give you a lot more longevity and ensures you've got RAM for future needs.
The 15" is sounding VERY convincing. Hopefully I can go in BB and test them out and then decide.
 

throAU

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Im currently in the process of upgrading my 2014 MacBook Air to a retina MBP. I am planning on getting an Apple refurb 13" (2015). But I've seen some good deals on the 2013 15" rMBP on ebay, from a seemingly reliable source that refurbishes them. With a quad core processor would it be a better choice?
Of course a quad core processor is better at processing, but the 13" is more portable.

Both will do the job unless you have very particular needs (most people do not).

I've had a 15" machine before, i went for the 13" and do not regret it, it's much more portable.
 

JerTheGeek

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Of course a quad core processor is better at processing, but the 13" is more portable.

Both will do the job unless you have very particular needs (most people do not).

I've had a 15" machine before, i went for the 13" and do not regret it, it's much more portable.
That is a good point. I know I definitely don't need the extra power. It's just the screen size. My question to myself is: "Would the larger screen be nice? So nice that it is worth having a little USB nub sticking out at all times to store photos and possibly other stuff? Or would the 15" actually be a downgrade since it is significantly larger than the 13", and i do carry my laptop out of the house once a week?" Ah, decisions!
 

JTToft

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That is a good point. I know I definitely don't need the extra power. It's just the screen size. My question to myself is: "Would the larger screen be nice? So nice that it is worth having a little USB nub sticking out at all times to store photos and possibly other stuff? Or would the 15" actually be a downgrade since it is significantly larger than the 13", and i do carry my laptop out of the house once a week?" Ah, decisions!
- If it were me, I'd consider the screen size differences a non-factor. If you want a large screen, get a real monitor.
 

JerTheGeek

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- If it were me, I'd consider the screen size differences a non-factor. If you want a large screen, get a real monitor.
I actually have a decent Asus (i think its like 20 inches), and it works fine. I use it occasionally for video editing but often i just use the MacBook screen, especially with it being retina i will likely use it more. And for those times when i can't connect to a monitor, the extra screen on the 15 might be nice...
 

JTToft

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especially with it being retina i will likely use it more
- Get a Retina quality external 4K monitor.

Though, if you feel that's not a solution for you, that's perfectly legitimate. I just have a hard time seeing the scenario where you'd be needing 15 inches on the go. There are other differences between the machines that are far more relevant than screen size.
 

throAU

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I actually have a decent Asus (i think its like 20 inches), and it works fine. I use it occasionally for video editing but often i just use the MacBook screen, especially with it being retina i will likely use it more. And for those times when i can't connect to a monitor, the extra screen on the 15 might be nice...
My experience with 15" portables (both PCs and Macs) is that for every time the 15" screen is nice on the move, the other 9 times out of 10 it's a pain in the arse because it's too big to use on aircraft, heavier to carry, gets worse battery life, etc. A 13" machine can be plugged into an external display, (or external GPU, etc.) a 15" machine can't be made lighter, or made to fit more easily on an aircraft tray table.

the 13" retina display is a good compromise imho, you can set it to "more space" setting for effective "looks like" 1680x1050 for a decent amount of desktop space.

Depends how often and where you use your machine away from a desk. Having had machines ranging in size from 10" through 17" (not just macs), i find 12-13" to be the best compromise for a machine that will be used regularly as a portable.

15" is (IMHO) for machines that spend most of their life on a desk or around the house, or are carried occasionally to a desk somewhere else. i.e., they ARE portable, but if you're regularly carrying it around, 13" is better.
 
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