rMBP Purchasing Decision

Death-T

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 18, 2012
125
0
Savannah, Georgia
I will be buying a rMBP tomorrow for college and am not sure which model to buy. I'm getting it on Tax-Free Day at the Apple Store in Haywood Mall with the education discount, so I'll be saving a decent bit of money but I still have some budget restraints.

I'm trying to decide whether to get the the 8 GB Ram with 512 GB SDD for $2449, or the 16 GB Ram with 256 GB SDD for $2179.

While 8 GB is a decent bit of ram now, I would like to keep this laptop for the next five years and I sometimes like to virtualize Windows via Parallels Desktop which runs better with more Ram. So I would like to have more Ram. But 256 GB isn't much for storage now in days. Yes, I know that it being an SSD means its better because it's faster, more reliable, etc. and I look forward to owning my first computer with one, but the fact of the matter is that 256 GB is a bit low in terms of storage. I would like to get the 16 GB Ram model with 512 GB SDD, but that will cost me $2629 which is a bit too much. On the other hand, I have a 2011 iMac with 500 GB HDD and 12 GB of Ram.

I know its my decision based on what's better for my needs and yata yata yata, but I was just curious to hear what others would do in this situation. Eh, I may just need to reserve my Windows Bootcamp to my iMac since I can't have both the storage and Ram capacity in the laptop I want. It may make sense for me to go with more ram and less storage since I always have my iMac for storage needs and will want the increased ram for better performance. Any thoughts? :confused:
 

Dangerous Theory

macrumors 68000
Jul 28, 2011
1,981
28
UK
Other things aside, you might want to reserve it or get in there very early. A tax free day will surely have a lot of people purchasing that laptop.
 

Stetrain

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2009
3,548
18
2.3Ghz + 16GB and 2.6Ghz + 16GB aren't available in store as far as I know, only online as build-to-order.
 

Death-T

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 18, 2012
125
0
Savannah, Georgia
2.3Ghz + 16GB and 2.6Ghz + 16GB aren't available in store as far as I know, only online as build-to-order.
I called and asked if the store had the 16 GB Ram rMBP's in stock, and they said yes--but then again I didn't ask about which processors they came with. So you're saying the stores will likely only carry the 2.7 Ghz + 16 GB Ram? Mm, with the education discount that should come to $2494 presuming it only has 256 GB flash storage, which I may just barely be able to do with my budget. But I don't really need the 2.7 Ghz processor for the price increase and if that's the case it may just be in my best interest to order online. :confused: Ah phooey I'll just havta see what they got.
 

Drask

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2012
228
0
I called and asked if the store had the 16 GB Ram rMBP's in stock, and they said yes--but then again I didn't ask about which processors they came with. So you're saying the stores will likely only carry the 2.7 Ghz + 16 GB Ram? Mm, with the education discount that should come to $2494 presuming it only has 256 GB flash storage, which I may just barely be able to do with my budget. But I don't really need the 2.7 Ghz processor for the price increase and if that's the case it may just be in my best interest to order online. :confused: Ah phooey I'll just havta see what they got.
What I think he meant is that they will only have the 2.7, 768, 16. Apple stores don't usually carry BTO orderers, thought it's a new computer and flying out of the shelves, so they 'might' have some 512/16 or 2.3/16, but I really doubt they will have something like 2.7/256/16.

If you order online you don't get the tax free?
 

mohsy90

macrumors 65816
Feb 4, 2011
1,332
1
New York
I called and asked if the store had the 16 GB Ram rMBP's in stock, and they said yes--but then again I didn't ask about which processors they came with. So you're saying the stores will likely only carry the 2.7 Ghz + 16 GB Ram? Mm, with the education discount that should come to $2494 presuming it only has 256 GB flash storage, which I may just barely be able to do with my budget. But I don't really need the 2.7 Ghz processor for the price increase and if that's the case it may just be in my best interest to order online. :confused: Ah phooey I'll just havta see what they got.
I think you got it all wrong. As far as I know Apple Stores only carry 3
configurations in store:

Base Model (2.3, 8GB Ram, 256Gb Flash) : $2199
Higher End (2.6, 8GB Ram, 512Gb Flash) : $2799
Maxed Out (2.7, 16GB Ram, 756GB Flash) : $3749

With that said, the 8GB Ram + 512Gb Flash model you stated for $2449 just became an option today on the Apple Store website. Before, Apple did not offer any upgrades to the base (2.3Ghz) model aside for upgrade of ram to 16GB. Now, aside from the 3 in store options I posted above, I don't see the ones you listed coming to a store any time soon.

I dont think that tax free day works for BTO orders. Well, hopefully that helps.


 

brentmore

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2002
263
1
ATX
I know its my decision based on what's better for my needs and yata yata yata, but I was just curious to hear what others would do in this situation. Eh, I may just need to reserve my Windows Bootcamp to my iMac since I can't have both the storage and Ram capacity in the laptop I want. It may make sense for me to go with more ram and less storage since I always have my iMac for storage needs and will want the increased ram for better performance. Any thoughts? :confused:
I plan on maxing out the RAM and taking the smaller SSD option. I have a great NAS setup, so I'm not not so much concerned about data storage on the laptop itself.
 

stevelam

macrumors 65816
Nov 4, 2010
1,215
3
without telling us your usage, whats the point of even asking? what kind of replies are you going to expect? people are just going to give random suggestions given the fact you haven't provided any helpful info besides "help me pick one"
 

mohsy90

macrumors 65816
Feb 4, 2011
1,332
1
New York
Another suggestion, MacMall is running a pretty sweet back to school program. They offer the same discount as Apple but include a whole bunch of extras. The link only shows the base and higher end model, but they do have the 16Gb +256Gb model on their website for sale. I would call to see you can get that model to be eligible for the back to school program. MacMall only charges tax in CA, so you save on tax, get the back to school discount and whole bunch of extra accessories. If they won't give you the extra but at least you get the student discount, it will still be a better option because your getting a BTO order without having to pay taxes.

Also, 256Gb is enough for a student. Most people don't need to carry around that much data. An external hard drive will save you a decent amount of $$$
 

Stetrain

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2009
3,548
18
I called and asked if the store had the 16 GB Ram rMBP's in stock, and they said yes--but then again I didn't ask about which processors they came with. So you're saying the stores will likely only carry the 2.7 Ghz + 16 GB Ram? Mm, with the education discount that should come to $2494 presuming it only has 256 GB flash storage, which I may just barely be able to do with my budget. But I don't really need the 2.7 Ghz processor for the price increase and if that's the case it may just be in my best interest to order online. :confused: Ah phooey I'll just havta see what they got.
As far as I've seen the only 16GB model they will have in store is the 2.7, 16GB, 768GB 'Ultimate' model.

Honestly for college I would go with the 2.3/8GB/256GB model. If you end up needing more storage for things like movies and music you can always get a USB 3 external drive.
 

wethackrey

macrumors 6502
Feb 27, 2007
259
17
Redondo Beach, California
I will be buying a rMBP tomorrow for college and am not sure which model to buy. I'm getting it on Tax-Free Day at the Apple Store in Haywood Mall with the education discount, so I'll be saving a decent bit of money but I still have some budget restraints.
<...snip...>
Any thoughts? :confused:
Given a choice between storage and memory in the ranges we're talking about, I would opt for more storage. Unless: a) You plan on running other operating systems in virtualization. b) You intend to do video editing and you're using an external drive for content.
 

Slivortal

macrumors 6502
Jun 14, 2012
399
2
Given a choice between storage and memory in the ranges we're talking about, I would opt for more storage. Unless: a) You plan on running other operating systems in virtualization. b) You intend to do video editing and you're using an external drive for content.
This, except I'd recommend sticking to the base 256 and getting externals.

Virtualization and media editing are two of the only reasons I see 2.6 or 16 being a good idea.

Otherwise, 2.3/8/256 is fine for college.
 

Death-T

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 18, 2012
125
0
Savannah, Georgia
Another suggestion, MacMall is running a pretty sweet back to school program. They offer the same discount as Apple but include a whole bunch of extras. The link only shows the base and higher end model, but they do have the 16Gb +256Gb model on their website for sale. I would call to see you can get that model to be eligible for the back to school program. MacMall only charges tax in CA, so you save on tax, get the back to school discount and whole bunch of extra accessories. If they won't give you the extra but at least you get the student discount, it will still be a better option because your getting a BTO order without having to pay taxes.

Also, 256Gb is enough for a student. Most people don't need to carry around that much data. An external hard drive will save you a decent amount of $$$
Ah, thank you! This looks like a pretty viable option. But I dunno, the thought of getting my new rMPB this Friday vs. a week or so from now might just convince me to grab the 2.3 Ghz/8 GB/256 GB base model in-store. :p

I would like to virtualize Windows from a bootcamp partition, so ideally I need both ram and storage space for that setup to work on my laptop. My iMac already satisfies those requirements and is my main machine at home, and since the Macbook will be more for my on-the-go needs I suppose the extra ram/storage would just be a luxury. I'm sure I'm not the only one here who wants the higher specs just because. :D
 

tivoboy

macrumors 68040
May 15, 2005
3,119
204
decided

I've been watching all these threads a few weeks now, trying to see what floats to the top.

Personally, I've decided to do 2.3 - upgraded to 2.6, 8GB upgraded to 16GB and keeping the 256GB SSD. While I do need storage, it is much cheaper to have an external, and in the next 6-12 months someone will make a nice 512GB upgrade SSD for the rMBP, or those little SDHC bay cards will be 128GB or so soon enough. Storage options are going to be getting MUCH cheaper over the next 12 months and I'll upgrade then instead of pay the still relatively high premium for the 512GB SSD from apple.
 

MCAsan

macrumors 601
Jul 9, 2012
4,543
415
Atlanta
Starting tomorrow you may not have to go to SC to get it tax free. In theory you can order it online, with ed discount and no taxes....if it is delivered in SC. I am lucky, we have family in Greenville/Greer area and can my wife's rMBP delivered to them.
 

Death-T

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 18, 2012
125
0
Savannah, Georgia
Thanks for the input guys. I ended up buying the 2.6 Ghz|8 GB|512 GB as indicated in my signature. With the student discount and the tax break the computer came out to be $2600. The 'budget' I spoke of earlier was actually referring to how much my parents and grandparents were willing to spend for my laptop, and when the base model was sold out they very generously bought me the mid-priced model as my graduation/college gift. I couldn't be happier. The extra storage space is great to have and the 8 GB ram is more than enough for a notebook while I still have plenty of upgradability should I need it with my iMac. I preferred the extra storage space in the end because I wanted as much as possible in my internal SDD (especially considering this is the first SDD-equipped PC I've ever owned) and because I keep a lot of apps, photos, music, videos, games, etc on top of my school-related work and miscellaneous files.