*sigh* How original: Buy now or wait?

floobie

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
75
0
Canada
I write this thread knowing full well how often this comes up, and I apologize. I'm just irritated right now and need some objectivity to calm me down:

My plan up until right now has been to wait for the redesigned Macbook Pros. I currently have a 2008 Macbook (see signature), and I'm generally happy with it. But, I'm using Logic quite a lot these days, and have been finding the cpu in the Macbook rather too weak to handle my dozens of plugins and tracks.

I just went through a fun little recording session where I'd get a damn overload error every 30 seconds. Good takes were lost because the cpu couldn't keep up. There are sections of the song I flat-out can not playback right now. That makes mixing really easy, doesn't it?

There's a benchmark out there that effectively tests how many tracks a computer can run in Logic. I know for a fact that the current Macbook Pros can handle about 3x as much as my Macbook can. Seems Logic benefits a lot from multiple cores and hyper threading. So, I've been looking to upgrade to a quad core i7 15" Macbook Pro, be it current or redesigned:

Reasons I wanted to wait for the redesign:

- Increased GPU performance is always nice.
- USB 3.0. I don't use it now, but I don't want to be left behind if that becomes the standard.
- Presumed lack of an ODD. I don't need it.
- Presumed increase in battery life. 7 hours is great, but more is in fact more better.
- The performance bump from Sandy to Ivy Bridge could make for an extra 10 or so tracks before I start to get overload errors. I don't know if I'd push the thing that hard, but it's reasonable to assume that I will eventually.

Reasons I want to pull the trigger now:

The current 15" Pro is already a massive step up from what I have in terms of:

- CPU
- GPU
- Battery life
- Screen resolution and quality
- Constant goram overload errors!!!

So... simple question: What would you do?
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,400
33,052
Boston
Sounds like you will receive an immediate benefit by upgrading so I'd get one now.

USB 3.0 Yeah a plus.
Optical drive - if you use one, then it may be nice to have it built in, but I'm at a point where I think apple will still keep it in their next iteration.

I also don't think they'll go though a case redesign. They have shown a propensity to stick with a design for a long time. Just look at the Mac Pro case - it dates back to the G5. The non-unibody design dates back to the G4 powerbook. So we have a track record of apple not making changes to the case.

So the bottom line is, Ivy Bridge, will the improvements in that chipset be sufficient to hold off. Personally I think, from what you've written you will benefit more from buying now then waiting until summer
 

Guru53

macrumors newbie
Jan 14, 2012
18
0
Honestly I would just get one now. The new ATI mobility cards are just rebranded cards from the current MacBook Pros. There may be a redesign, but the current MacBook Pros already have the best cases in the business and there is only so much slimming you can do with such a powerful system. USB 3.0 would be nice, but the thunderbolt dock with give you the opportunity to use such devices with an adapter. Sandy Bridge processors are blazing fast and the turbo speeds on these processors are insane for a notebook. I don't know how you could be disappointed. These MacBook Pros are blazing fast and will last for at least 4 years strong.
 

Spink10

Suspended
Nov 3, 2011
4,261
1,019
Oklahoma
It will be a while before the 2011 MBP cannot handle what the MBP 2012 can handle. Years down the road for most tasks. :)

Buy it! - Get a deal from a authorized Apple Seller - save some money towards the end of the product cycle.
 

Guru53

macrumors newbie
Jan 14, 2012
18
0
Just wait for the refresh.......if you buy now you will kick yourself in May or June and wonder why you purchased "older" technology.
I don't quite understand this thought process. Technology moves so quickly that it is simply impossible to always stay up to date with the latest technology. I've learned that it's always best to just consider what is on the market at the time or the very near future, and purchase based off that and not what may come in the future. Now if you don't really need a new MacBook Pro and are willing to wait, then sure hold out for 5 more months. However, that's five months you'd be without a kickass machine for some unknown future product (and if the new MBPs are really so much better you must have one, you can always sell this one for a god price as Macs tend to hold their value well).
 

prisstratton

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2011
534
121
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
I don't quite understand this thought process. Technology moves so quickly that it is simply impossible to always stay up to date with the latest technology. I've learned that it's always best to just consider what is on the market at the time or the very near future, and purchase based off that and not what may come in the future. Now if you don't really need a new MacBook Pro and are willing to wait, then sure hold out for 5 more months. However, that's five months you'd be without a kickass machine for some unknown future product (and if the new MBPs are really so much better you must have one, you can always sell this one for a god price as Macs tend to hold their value well).
True...and I agree in all aspects if we were talking about a Windows PC. But, seeing as we are talking Apple and it costs a lot more than other PC's and it is not something that you buy every day of the week. THEN......make every dollar count for as much as you can get.
 

saberahul

macrumors 68040
Nov 6, 2008
3,615
89
USA
I think with the introduction of TB in the PC market as well, USB 3.0 is not going to last as long as 2.0. Anyhow, the current MBP has FW 800 support (which I believe is faster than 3.0).
 
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153098

macrumors member
Jan 1, 2012
36
0
I'd wait. It's only a couple of months. If you didn't have a laptop right now it might be a different answer.
 

Suno

macrumors 6502
Dec 12, 2011
252
0
Someone else mentioned that it'll be years before the 2011 can't handle what the 2012 can. So performance-wise, it's more beneficial to get it now.

The question you should be asking yourself is "Are the updates that are presumably going to happen for the 2012 like USB 3.0, retina display, etc. worth the few more months of endurance"? That's a given, but sometimes it helps to just write it out an read it.

For me, the answer is yes, so that's why I choose to wait. Getting the MBP now would be awesome, but having those little extra features would be even more awesome.
 

ZZ Bottom

macrumors 6502a
Apr 14, 2010
804
199
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

Disarm plugins whenever possible and sub-mix whenever possible. If you don't make the effort to find workarounds then you will drive yourself even crazier.

All it comes down to is whether you can wait until May/beginning of June worst case. If not, buy now and potentially lose some cash if you need to have the latest and greatest. It seems to me that the MacBook Pros are due for some kind of substantial change, whether it be internal or external.

Another thought is to buy an SSD to run as your system drive, from where all your plugins will run. It should noticeably improve performance; and if you decide you have no need for it when the Pros update, an SSD will still retain decent value to sell off.
 

floobie

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
75
0
Canada
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

Disarm plugins whenever possible and sub-mix whenever possible. If you don't make the effort to find workarounds then you will drive yourself even crazier.

All it comes down to is whether you can wait until May/beginning of June worst case. If not, buy now and potentially lose some cash if you need to have the latest and greatest. It seems to me that the MacBook Pros are due for some kind of substantial change, whether it be internal or external.

Another thought is to buy an SSD to run as your system drive, from where all your plugins will run. It should noticeably improve performance; and if you decide you have no need for it when the Pros update, an SSD will still retain decent value to sell off.
Yeah, I definitely do all that stuff already. I freeze basically every track that I'm not working on, and bus as many effects as I can. Would a SSD help me, though? Most of my plugins are soft synths and a few instances of a guitar amp simulator. These effects, as far as I can tell, are completely cpu dependent. The samples I do use haven't pushed the limits of my HDD speed yet.

Indeed, it comes down to how important those potential shiny new features are to me. And, that is of course what I'm undecided on. Partially because a lot of it is just speculation at this point. I'm mainly considering this for the increase in processing power, dedicated graphics, and additional battery life relative to what I have now. The rest is probably just icing on the cake. I hope. But, the time frame does matter as well. If I have to hold out another half year, I'll pull the trigger now, because I don't want to lose half a year of additional productivity to waiting. But, if it's just a month or two, I can wait.

Edit: Shouldn't it be AA Bottom? ;)
 

miniConvert

macrumors 68040
The MacBook Pros just received an update at the end of last year. You clearly need a new machine, so now is definitely the right time to pull the trigger.

All of the things you're waiting for seem incremental to me. There's no revolutionary thing that makes waiting for a new model worthwhile, and there's absolutely no guarantee that Apple will include any specific feature anyway.

Having Thunderbolt should stop you from running into any USB2 related bottlenecks for many years, just like Firewire has in the past. Ok, so it'll probably cost a little more to buy accessories that make use of it even as they become more widely available, just like with Firewire, but I've always found buying FW800 external HDDs to be worth it for example.

Go, max out an i7 BTO :D
 

sublimeguide

macrumors member
Dec 12, 2010
35
0
But, if it's just a month or two, I can wait.
I don't think it will be month or two. Probably they will manage to roll out the iPad 3 for march, but as far as I remember they like to have some time between refreshing iPad/iPhone/Mac products. I am pretty sure the Macbook refresh will be in the middle of May- late June. No one except apple can't be sure, but it's a safe bet to say there will be new MacBooks this Spring/Summer.
 

kaydot

macrumors regular
Sep 15, 2011
192
9
Your reasons for waiting are all "nice-to-haves", and your reasons for upgrading are "must haves". With that reasoning, I'd buy it now.

If you are losing productivity on things you simply cannot do or things that are getting ruined, then you will be saving yourself all kinds of stress by buying now. And since all the reasons for waiting are only "nice-to-haves", it also sounds like you won't be heart broken if/when the new ones come out.
(The ODD in the current model can be swapped out for SSD or more storage!)

I'd Buy Now.
 

dusk007

macrumors 68040
Dec 5, 2009
3,386
62
Yeah, I definitely do all that stuff already. I freeze basically every track that I'm not working on, and bus as many effects as I can. Would a SSD help me, though? Most of my plugins are soft synths and a few instances of a guitar amp simulator. These effects, as far as I can tell, are completely cpu dependent. The samples I do use haven't pushed the limits of my HDD speed yet.
If the freezes/lags are because CPU laod shoots up to 99% an SSD won't change a thing.
 

Beezzy

macrumors 6502
Apr 23, 2011
267
6
There will always be something bigger and better out there. Why wait? Just pull the trigger!
 

pacman7331

macrumors regular
Apr 5, 2006
177
0
been having the same debate. now or later, or never?

but I have no need whatsoever for a new Macbook Pro.
i have a 2.8 core 2 duo unibody.
the day I bought it however I thought i'd return it.
my first macbook pro was the 2.0 core duo model
I was disappointed by the heat output,
I was expecting the core 2 duo to run much cooler, but it does not.

Since then i've not treated it every well.
For one thing the glass trackpad always felt quite stiff and resistant
I expected it to be a strong outdoorsy kind of mac.
lol no laptop is meant for what I do.

now the optical drive is being fussy after already replacing the first one
the DVI port doesn't connect to projectors,
and there are dings and scratches here and there.

So, for a while I said I'd never buy another mac again.
too expensive and apple voids warranties,
as soon as you light a stick of incense in your house, or burn the brownies!

But then I remembered that while PCs are cheaper and very fast,
they don't do what macs do, and macs have good old bootcamp.

Why get a PC if you can do everything on a mac?

So i've been thinking of getting rid of my current models for a new one...
I'd like to wait until the new release, I by no means need a new Macbook pro,
but i'm not sure the ivy bridges will be worth the wait.
Retina display isn't coming until end of 2012 anyway i hear.

But I have been quite disappointed in this 2.8 core 2 duo macbook pro's ability to run games.
the 2.0 core duo -> 2.8 core 2 duo wasn't much of an update IMHO.

If I buy now i'd defiantly like to resell when the new models come out.
 
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floobie

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
75
0
Canada
Well, decision made: I'll go to the Apple store sometime in the next few days and pick up a shiny new 15" Macbook Pro.

I'm not waiting as long as it will likely take for the redesign to be released. The expected new features of the redesign are indeed just nice to haves, while upgrading now will completely deal with the issues I'm having. Should the redesign surprise me with some new feature I MUST have, I'll just sell the current 15" one for the redesigned one. I'll lose a bit of money in the process, but that's effectively the risk I'm taking now, and in the grand scheme of things, it isn't a huge deal.

Thanks for the replies. They really helped me think through this :)
 

pacman7331

macrumors regular
Apr 5, 2006
177
0
Well, decision made: I'll go to the Apple store sometime in the next few days and pick up a shiny new 15" Macbook Pro.

I'm not waiting as long as it will likely take for the redesign to be released. The expected new features of the redesign are indeed just nice to haves, while upgrading now will completely deal with the issues I'm having. Should the redesign surprise me with some new feature I MUST have, I'll just sell the current 15" one for the redesigned one. I'll lose a bit of money in the process, but that's effectively the risk I'm taking now, and in the grand scheme of things, it isn't a huge deal.

Thanks for the replies. They really helped me think through this :)
Cool man, Well be careful with that incense, or if you cook or smoke. Apple seriously voided my 1 year warranty after I burned a few sticks near my computer, so that would go along with Apple Care as well.

But these computers are the best on the market IMHO.
In fact these things are the only things i'm really sincerley materialistic about...
 

thefizzle657

macrumors regular
Oct 21, 2011
114
0
Well, decision made: I'll go to the Apple store sometime in the next few days and pick up a shiny new 15" Macbook Pro.

I'm not waiting as long as it will likely take for the redesign to be released. The expected new features of the redesign are indeed just nice to haves, while upgrading now will completely deal with the issues I'm having. Should the redesign surprise me with some new feature I MUST have, I'll just sell the current 15" one for the redesigned one. I'll lose a bit of money in the process, but that's effectively the risk I'm taking now, and in the grand scheme of things, it isn't a huge deal.

Thanks for the replies. They really helped me think through this :)
The redesign is a complete rumor anyway, there is no guarantee that the next MBPs or even the ones after that are going to have a new design. I don't think there is a real need for a redesign anyway. It seems to me that this obsession with constant redesigns started with the iPhone and has spilled onto people's expectations for Apple's other product lines.
 

SixerFixer

macrumors newbie
Jan 2, 2012
2
0
Winnipeg, Canada
There will always be a next revision; even after the next big redesign, people will be asking if they should get that one, or wait the next few months until the power bump comes along.

If you want one, then go buy one! :)
 

J71

macrumors member
Jul 19, 2008
67
0
Norman
Well, decision made: I'll go to the Apple store sometime in the next few days and pick up a shiny new 15" Macbook Pro.

I'm not waiting as long as it will likely take for the redesign to be released. The expected new features of the redesign are indeed just nice to haves, while upgrading now will completely deal with the issues I'm having. Should the redesign surprise me with some new feature I MUST have, I'll just sell the current 15" one for the redesigned one. I'll lose a bit of money in the process, but that's effectively the risk I'm taking now, and in the grand scheme of things, it isn't a huge deal.

Thanks for the replies. They really helped me think through this :)
I think for what you want to do, you made the right decision to buy now. My only recommendation is to go with the 7200 rpm hard drive. The current line of MBP's have only been out for about 4 months and at this time it is still only rumors when the new 2012 models will be available and whether or not they will be redesigned. USB 3.0 would be a very nice new "nice to have" but I wouldn't consider it a deal breaker at this time. Just my 2 cents.
 
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