Some advice from people using a rMBP on a daily basis

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by L T, Aug 24, 2015.

  1. L T macrumors 6502

    L T

    Feb 24, 2013

    I currently have a 2013 13 inch MBA, the base model, 1.3/4GB/128SSD. Ive used it for 2 years now and love it. At the time, I settled for this Air as it was all I could afford, had to delay the purchase to be able to go for the 13 inch over 11 inch. My usage has shifted some what, from mainly web browsing and word processing when I first got the air to more video and photo work. Of course, the Air handles the photos work well, but after comparing my photos on my Air and on a friends retina MacBook pro, I need that retina display!! With my photos library growing, I also need some more SSD space. Moving the photos to an external drive doesn't interest me as this is a portable laptop and I don't want to have to pick up a HDD when i just want to grab and go.

    I have experienced problems using Final Cut for video editing work on the air. It just doesn't seem powerful enough, I managed to salvage a friends wedding video I was editing when the Air completely locked up halfway through!

    I have made the decision to get the Pro, but I need help on the configuration. I don't want to settle for what I can afford this time, I'm willing to put a bit more money in to get a machine that is going to keep me going for the next few years.

    I know I will be getting 256GB SSD minimum, I'm happy to keep all my footage on an external HDD and just transfer the files I'm work on onto the SSD. As if I'm editing video, I'm likely at my desk where my drives are. 512GB would allow me to have everything on the internal drive and would generally make stuff a bit easier, allowing room for my libraries to grow.

    I'm stuck on the RAM.

    Yes 4GB RAM has served me well, and 8GB should give me lots more legroom when video editing. But would it be a sensible bet to go for the 16GB upgrade?

    I work in education so can get the 13 inch pro with 8GB/256 for £1126, 16GB/256 for £1276, 8GB/512 £1315 16GB/512 £1465.

    For people outside the UK, the 15 inch rMBP comes at 16GB/256 £1471 and 16GB/512 £1839 just for comparison.

    Should I go for the 256GB with 16GB RAM, or save money on the RAM and go for the 512 SSD with 8GB RAM.

    People who have experience of editing video on the rMBP, is 8GB sufficient in your opinion?

  2. Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Feb 5, 2007
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    I have always maxed out every computer, since 1995 with the fastest processor/ram. I have never regretted it
    If it was me, I'd get the 512 SSD with 16 GB of aftermarket ram
  3. campyguy macrumors 68040

    Mar 21, 2014
    Portland / Seattle
    I dabble in video - it's fun. I've got FCPX and Premier CC on my Mac. My business partner and one of my employees are hardcore into it. Opt for the RAM - you'll need/want/covet it. Each of us have the 1TB SSD, but we're running late-2013 rMBPs - the newer Macs have 512 SSDs that are just as fast, but I think I'd still opt for the 1TB SSD.

    My real tip is to use the web site for stock in Apple's Refurbished Store, complete with notifications. My rMBP looked brand new, and, while that Mac was still the current version I knocked US$700 off the retail price. It's been flawless, and Apple sent it overnight at no extra cost. My last rMBP was new, and had a 512GB SSD - it wasn't enough space for me.
  4. Spink10 Suspended


    Nov 3, 2011
    Cannot get aftermarket ram - soldered
  5. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    As have I; in fact, I have always found it to be a worthwhile choice to have made and means that you will get a number of years out of the computer.
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    If you are concentrating on photo and video work get the 15 inch, simple as that really. Everything will start to go 4K over the next couple of years and that'll want the grunt of the 15 inch.
  7. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    My first Apple computer was a 15" MBP which I bought in 2008. It was fantastic computer, but I did find it relatively heavy - and less comfortable than I had thought - to carry.

    However, my work life (I travel a lot and prize portability) meant that when the MBA had become a sufficiently powerful computer (early models were underpowered) with excellent battery life, this is what I chose. Besides, my work involves a lot of writing and research; retina screens - while nice - are not what I need.

    When buying a computer, you really ought to ask yourself what you need it for, rather than being swayed by the choices of others, or by advertising.

    If I was stationary in my life, and if I worked in video, or anything visual, I would buy a 15" retina MBP without hesitation.
  8. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    I use my mac for writing and research also and that was the reason I went for the rMBP over the Air, I find the retina screens best attribute is how good it makes text look, it's like reading print!!!

    This is the main reason for retina in my book it is far easier on the eyes for reading research and writing reports and assignments. I strongly suggest you reassess your priorities for your next purchase, yeah photos and video looks nice (although blacks can be a bit rubbish for dark films to be honest) but it's all about the text for me....
  9. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Well, portability is a huge issue for me, - I travel a lot and am a short female not in the first flush of youth, so my priorities are portability, duration of battery, reliability and power.

    If I ever find myself in a situation where I am tethered to a desk in one building much of the time, then, in addition to an uber-portable computer - I will probably invest in a rMBP.
  10. haudvereor macrumors newbie

    Jul 8, 2015
    For the work that you are doing considering the quad core 15 inch rMBP is a good idea also. That will automatically Come with 16gb of ram.

    It would be a great consideration especially with the video work and not having to think about another upgrade in a couple years again. It beats spending $1500 and more every couple years. I would even look at the higher end model 15 inch rMBP for the dedicated graphics card if I were you. The 13 inch with 16gb ram will work but the 15 inch will give you more options in the future. The difference in weight is not that much and you will get a better graphics card.
  11. jjhoekstra macrumors regular

    Apr 23, 2009
    If video editing is important to you than you should start looking at the graphics card. I would get the 15"MBP with the M370X graphics card. It transforms the MBP into a very capable video edit system.
  12. jterp7 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 26, 2011
    Main upgrades imo worth getting are graphics and ram. Storage can always be supplemented and 256 is plenty for boot and tb allows you have externals that can operate at equivalent speeds anyway. The base 15 i7 should be fine.

    If you can wait for the refurb look for 16gb and upgraded graphics
  13. EssentialGadget macrumors newbie

    Aug 30, 2013
    I recommend you go with 16GB and 1TB Flash Storage. This unit will handle everything you throw at it, last 7+ years and have high resale.
  14. CoastalOR macrumors 68000


    Jan 19, 2015
    Oregon, USA
    15" rMBP, 512 Gb, 16 Gb, & dGPU would be my recommendation.
  15. z31fanatic macrumors 6502a


    Mar 7, 2015
    Mukilteo, WA USA
    A 13" rMBP is not that much more powerful than the Air.
    I too think you should buy the 15" with dGPU. It really isn't that big or heavy. Still very portable in my experience.
  16. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    The bottleneck for media creation is the dualcore, never the RAM.

    If you want more than the 13" rmbp then the 15" is the only way to go. The upgrades on the 13" are a rip-off.
  17. jjhoekstra macrumors regular

    Apr 23, 2009
    I use a 15 rMBP on a daily basis, mostly for video-editing and financial simulations. I have 16 GB RAM and I can say that FCX has never ever used more than about 6 GB. The rest of the memory just sits there, happily doing nothing. So I your case I would go with the 512/8. It is easy to use up all of your storage when video-editing
    But as already said in other posts, for video-editing the power of the GPU is very important, and in that area the 13" does not shine. Why not get a reformed 15" with a decent GPU? That is what I would do in your case if at all possible.
  18. AFEPPL macrumors 68030


    Sep 30, 2014
    256GB and 16GB of RAM on the 13 rMBP will be fine.

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