Replacing 2013 13" rMBP with 12" MB?


macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 31, 2015
Innsbruck, Austria
Hey there!

It's that time of the year again - I consider upgrading my Apple lineup. :D I'm currently working on a Late 2013 Retina MacBook Pro with an 13 inch screen. Don't get me wrong - I love it; it's a great computer which shines at everything I throw at it. And with Sierra, it got some really neat new features.

BUT. First, I spend lots and lots of hours commuting every week and therefore want something as portable as possible. And while the rMBP is slim and lightweight, it's still a tad too heavy for me to want to carry it around with me in my backpack. I bought an iPad mini 4, which is great for watching movies and reading, but for me, it just isn't a substitute for a proper MacOS device.
Second, I'm just someone who absolutely LOVES new and revolutionary technology. And I'm absolutely fascinated by that Retina MacBook; it's just sooo beautiful, slim and technically interesting. :eek:

Long story short: I'm thinking of selling my rMBP and buying that shiny 2016 MB. 1.1 Base model, silver.
Having only that single port is more of a plus for me, as I love that minimalistic, uncluttered design and didn't plug anything into my MBP for a couple of months anyway. So no problem. The Core M is also not a big deal since I only use it for surfing, watching YouTube and writing most of the time. I know that those rare WoW-sessions won't be possible anymore, but I can deal with it.

What do you guys mean? Would it be a good idea for me to switch? How light and portable is the MB really compared with the rMBP? Don't have an Apple Store nearby, unfortunately, so I can't try it in person. I guess I'm just looking really hard for something to soothe my bad conscience and justifying that hefty price tag. :rolleyes:

Thanks a lot for any tips und suggestions! They're very well appreciated! :)

P.S.: Apple's special offer with free Beats Solo2 Wireless headphones with every qualified MacBook via the Education Store really got me. I wanted to buy new headphones anyway, so that would be killing two birds with one stone...


macrumors 6502a
Feb 4, 2016
At a café near you
Have same rMBP. Commute a lot and work from my machine, often unplugged (like now), with external monitor about 50% of the time. I've carried the rMBP with me every day for 4 years (walking, cycling, to cafes etc - I don't have a tablet).

I tried the 12" MB but keyboard is very bad (very little travel, poor accuracy for me).

The 12" screen is a bit smaller (less work area) - pretty much the same resolution (i.e. they are both retina). Color-gamut? The rMBP is good enough, for really critical Lightroom work I use an external calibrated NEC monitor. I would not trust a laptop for that anyway and the 12" is underpowered for Lightroom (given that the 13" rMBP is underpowered for serious editing with LR 6.9)

For me the lack of USB ports / HDMI or mini-DP combined with a lack of 2nd port for power is a deal-breaker.

It's also a step back in terms of CPU power, and in practical use the battery life is about the same.

If you have lots of money, then just buy it (but then, why ask).

TL;DR: Even as a business expense I cannot justify it and it's completely form over function IMO.


macrumors newbie
Feb 23, 2017
Bristol, UK
I realise the OP put this up a while back, but I actually switched from a 15" rMBP to the 12" MB (1.1GHz) and haven't looked back.

Appreciate the keyboard does take a while to get used, but I find the 12" very comfortable to look at, it's handled everything I've thrown at it without pinwheeling and lag - use it for little Photoshop work on the go alongside typical pages/numbers and emails.

I have to admit I've barely looked at my iPad since getting it, it's so portable it really has been the perfect middle ground for me in terms of power, usability and portability. At home I do use it with an external monitor setup for when I need more screen real estate.
  • Like
Reactions: zachlegomaniac


macrumors 6502a
Sep 20, 2008
Gonna hang onto my late 2013 13" rMBP for a couple more years as it handles all my computing needs with ease. I don't have the funds to sell it and buy a new computer, but if money grew on trees I'd definitely switch to the next 12" rMB and a 5k monitor. I have a friend with one and love the form as well.
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.