Still can't make up my mind..which one should I buy?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by yingyangryder, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. yingyangryder macrumors newbie

    Dec 10, 2012
    Hi everyone.
    This is another "which macbook should I buy" thread. I have been looking at previous threads a lot but I still cannot make up my mind.

    I should note, this will be my first mac, I live in Japan and can get the education discount. However I want to buy before April as there will be a 3% Tax rise.

    Anyway my uses will include:
    General everyday stuff - Email, word processing, internet etc. (with many tabs)
    Very light gaming (Minecraft, old RTS games and such, I have consoles for big blockbuster games).
    Programming - I wish to create 2d games and possibly simple 3d games for iphone on this mac. This is a hobby of mine.
    Photoshop - For the above reason
    Unity/Blendr - For the above reason
    Logic Pro - I also like making/recording my own music
    Bootcamp with windows 7
    Very very light video editing. Nothing professional, I often travel and like making videos that summarise my adventure.

    .. and that`s all I can think of.

    I keep going between the top end 15inch macbook (graphics card, 512gb SSD etc.) and the higher end 13 inch macbook pro.
    Money is not a particular issue, I can afford both but money saved is always nice.

    I have been to Apple stores on numerous occassions to have a play with them and I`ll be going to Tokyo again this Saturday to see if I can make my mind up.

    When I do make up my mind, I will be purchasing online as I need an English keyboard (United Kingdom). Tokyo only stocks Japanese/US keyboards.

    So..which would you buy if you were in my position?

    Any help is greatly appreciated. Hoping to pull the trigger within the next week.
  2. Bobby Corwen macrumors 68030

    Jul 16, 2010
    Go with the 15. its more powerful and has a bigger screen.
  3. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    They both can do what you want fine, but I think screen size something you need to decide on as it's very much a personal preference thing.

    I don't think you need all the power of the top 15" though, the low 15" (maybe with BTO options) might be a cheaper fit for you.
  4. Qaanol macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2010
    Any new rMBP will have more than enough power. For the screen size, decide which one you like better. You mention traveling, so perhaps the 13.3″ has an advantage there.

    For the SSD, you’re the only one who knows how much storage space you’ll need or want. Will you be keeping numerous videos and programming projects on the machine, or will you only have what you’re working on at the time and put everything else on an external drive at home?

    For RAM, I don’t know much about video editing so I can’t really help here. It sounds like your use case is a bit heavier than the average person’s, but nowhere near the level of those who run multiple VM’s simultaneously.

    For CPU though, I can pretty much guarantee that upgrades will not be worth it. Sure, it might shave a few percent off the time it takes to encode a video, but most of the time you’ll be doing things other than encoding and the processor speed will not be the bottleneck. So unless you’re earning money based on how fast your computer runs, I don’t see CPU upgrades as worthwhile.
  5. yingyangryder thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 10, 2012
    Thank you for the replies. Much appreciated.
    I was debating getting a lower end 15 inch but when I bump the ram to 16 and ssd to 512 it's basically the same price as the one with the graphics card. So I'm at a bit of a loss.

    Qaanol, thanks for the reply. I travel a lot but generally I don't take my laptop with me. The macbook will stay at my home, come with me to school and that's pretty much it. I'll be keeping numerous things on the ssd, judging from previous computers I'll easily fill 256, 512 seems right for me.

    Thanks for the comment about the CPU too! I'll just keep whichever one is inside the one I buy.
  6. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    13" rMBP for you, you will never know you will need a rMBP for traveling in the future. :apple:
  7. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    Well, based on this, if you're thinking about going for 16GB of RAM the 15" you listed in the OP seems like the way to go.
  8. Davidkoh macrumors 65816

    Aug 2, 2008
    Are you going to bring it with you? I decided I want portability over screen size so I got the 13" instead of the 15". The point of this machine was that it would act as my development machine when not sitting at a desk, and for that I should want to bring it with me on a plane, in a café, to a conference and so on. I noticed the 15" would be too big to just grab and use wherever for me.
  9. kathyricks macrumors 6502

    Nov 26, 2012
    yeah if you want 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD then might as well get the part number ME294LL/A 15 incher. It has dedicated graphics and is the fastest, most powerful notebook Apple makes. Runs about $2200-2300 new in box on ebay so it would actually be a little less costly than buying the base model 15" for full retail price direct from Apple configured with 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD. The base model (ME293LL/A ) lacks the dedicated graphics (does come with pretty powerful integrated Iris Pro graphics, however).
  10. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    The OP already said:

  11. AppleHater macrumors 6502a

    Jun 9, 2010
    You listed out a lot of different things and if you want all of them at its best, you better get a serious desktop rather.

    Think about 2-3 things that matter to you the best. For example, if you're serious about programming, even 15 inch won't be enough. Sure you can program on 11 inch if you like, but there's no comparison to a dual 20+inch screen monitor setup. Yes, I've been a professional engineer for 15+ years.

    Or, not sure about Protool on a laptop CPU.
  12. yingyangryder thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 10, 2012
    Thanks for the replies again. Unfortunately it can't be a desktop. Id like one but this job is temporary and within 2 years I'll either have to move somewhere else in Japan or move back home. A desktop would be a pain to ship back. I think I'm gonna just pull the trigger on the 15 ^^ thanks a bunch everyone!
  13. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    rMBP + external monitor(s) = best of both worlds.
  14. leftyMac macrumors regular

    Feb 20, 2011
    I had the same dilemma (for 3D, programming, video editing, audio production etc.) and ended up getting a top end 15" rMBP. it's got dGPU just in case you need more powerful graphics card in the future. for rendering videos, in 3D or otherwise, dGPU often helps a lot, can be a huge time saving.

    though I was always using 13" MBP, it was super easy to get used to the 15".

    I couldn't be happier with my purchase.
  15. Praxis91 macrumors regular


    Mar 15, 2011
    Go for the 15. You don't need the top end with 1tb SSD, but get the dGPU, 16gb RAM, and 512 SSD.

Share This Page