Switching from windows. Should I wait or should I buy MBP 2015?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Moghaak, Jun 20, 2016.

  1. Moghaak macrumors newbie

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    Jun 20, 2016
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    Canada
    #1
    I will start with the university in the August end. I am going to run Big Data tech-stack on my new PC which includes Spark, Hadoop, Python, R and few others. I am going for a Data Science course and hence I might process moderately big data. (max size could be 50 GB, but I don't think in College we might get any bigger assignment then this one) So would base model be enough for my needs?

    So now I have education discount. Which consists of Beats Headphone and around 10% off on the price. So should I wait for the new model, which I am sure they might not release till the September event, which means it will come out in the October. And I wouldn't really have any portable laptop for me in college for first 2 months. Which isn't okay.

    So what are your views on this? Feeling confused.

    And what are views to have seamless transition from Windows to Mac.
     
  2. kevinkyoo macrumors 6502a

    kevinkyoo

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2016
    #2
    Okay, here are my thoughts on your situation and your last statement/question:

    1) Wait until mid-late July. If you want to get a configured MacBook Pro, it can take up to a week or two, and it's better to get it early than right when school starts.
    2) Base model may fit your needs. I'm not too familiar with those programs, but for me at least, 16GB is future-proofing. Since you'll be using this computer for your entire time at the university most likely, I would definitely consider 16GB, although if you think that is overkill and/or the price is too steep, 8GB is perfectly fine.
    3) We have no idea when the new MacBook Pro's are going to be released. Worst case scenario, it is released in fall. However, refer to (1), and just purchase the 13" MBP (Don't get the one with dGPU if you're aiming for the 15")
    4) For me, Windows is superior in certain apps, and if in those certain apps you don't mind the Windows 10 UI (ex. Adobe and gaming). In pretty much every other case, I think Mac is better. There's a lot fewer bugs (I gave up on Windows 10 when the damn Start menu wouldn't load up - the START menu), and the overall look and functionality of OS X is a lot cleaner and intuitive than Windows.
     
  3. Moghaak thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    Well I just had talk with one data scientist who has used those program on Mac, so he said base mac is fine and it's not a big of a deal. He also asked me to keep additional 1 TB external hard drive which I already have.

    Can any one tell me how much space does OS X users? If I get the 128 GB storage one, then after OS X and it's default apps + Microsoft apps how much space will I be left over with?

    No I am not going to do any Adobe apps. And I am considering MBP 13" as I need it to be portable one.
     
  4. Command macrumors regular

    Command

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    Jan 23, 2015
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    USA
    #4
    When it comes to anything tech - buy when you're ready and the best you can afford. Then, don't look back.
     
  5. Totally Bored, Jun 20, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016

    Totally Bored macrumors member

    Totally Bored

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2015
    #5

    128 GB is small IMO. I have 94 GB in apps alone but, I do music recording. I'd go 256 minimum.

    There not gonna build another MBP before school starts so I say buy now.

    FWIW, my daughter goes to college for Graphic arts and I just bought her a new MBP 13" i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB. Big investment but I'm going with the idea that this machine will last her thru college. Really nice machine and it runs real fast. Just got it today and I'm jealous, kinda sorta :)

    You can do it. We all go thru it at some point. If you already have a iPhone you'll love how the MBP and the iPhone interact.

    Good luck
     
  6. Videomanmac macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2015
    #6
    I will be entering college, so I'm in the same boat as you.

    If you don't care about beats, then go refurbished. Knocks the price down even further. But, you could use the Beats to add in some swag.

    July 25th is my buying date. That's a Monday, so I'll have it by Friday. I will be purchasing the 15" with the dGPU.
     
  7. jerryk, Jun 21, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016

    jerryk macrumors 68020

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    #7
    I do data science, mostly machine learning. I use SQL and flat files for data, and use Hadoop for reducing time to process. Most of my initial work is done in R or Python.

    Most of the tools you will need run fine on OSX so from that point the transition is pretty straight forward.

    I just got a new MBP 15. Mine was the discrete graphics model. I do not need the GPU really, but wanted the 512 GB of disk space and did not want to wait for a BTO MacBook with 512 GB and no discrete GPU. The space was important because some of my data sets can push 20 GBs and I have multiple copies.

    Before you buy from Apple you might want to look places like B&H and Amazon. They are considerably lower than Apple which may negate the education discount. Also, I believe B&H does not charge sales tax on out of state orders.
     
  8. Moghaak thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 20, 2016
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    Canada
    #8
    Is your replication factor more then 3?

    I am doing master's degree and want to make sure that this computer will survive during the two year degree in terms of portability, battery life and processing of the data.

    Specifically, my program is related to Big Data Programming and there are 2 labs, 6 credits each in the first 2 sems. However, I am not sure that in school if we will be asked to process more then 10 GB of data at a time. And if that is not the case once in a year then I could set up EC2 and process there.

    Today, I was checking on Best Buy they are giving $200 off, so it costs $1099 for the base model.

    I was also looking into refurbished laptops but it turns out that Apple is not giving student discount on them. But then why not just go with the school discount and get like $170is off and a headphone to go with it. I mean even if I keep it on Craglist, I would get like $70 to $100 or even more for packed ones.

    As of now I don't want to spend too much money, 15" is out of my budget and portability. I am leaving my SDE job to do degree and am not thinking to spend much before I end up job in DS sector.

    I might could think about that 256, but let me know more because if I can really manage with 128 then I don't want to spend more on it. I am not sure if you went to DS school or not.

    And another 2 questions that I have is, to buy now or later? And how to make my transition easy from Windows to Mac?

    I am 70% sure that I want to buy now.
     
  9. jerryk macrumors 68020

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    Nov 3, 2011
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    SF Bay Area
    #9
    I think 128 GB is going to be tough. Often you may create different file containing the data you are presented, such as one that contains the detail values and then one that contains the values aggregated, and so on. 256GB should be enough. Memory is also an issue 8GB is minimum and more is better. But if you can get a deal on a 256 GB with 8 GB of Ram take it! The prices are depressed now because a lot of people of holding off for the new MBPs.

    The transition from Windows to Mac (or Mac to Windows) is pretty easy. A windowing app is a windowing app.

    Since a lot of Data Science tools were developed in academic or open source settings, having a true Unix shell like bash shell is useful. You will need to get used to working in the shell and using tools like npm, and data science tools like R Studio, R and if using Python, scikit-learn and Jupyter Notebook.

    FWIW, most of my education is Data Science was on the job in bioinformatics, cheminformatics, and manufacturing. My undergraduate degrees are in Physics, Math, and Geology and my masters is in Computer Science.
     
  10. hiddenmarkov macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Japan
    #10
    Mac for your field will be fine. Because of underlying bsd core you get easier access to some tools. Some much easier to get than with windows even. Most make a port to MacOS as they would a linux distro. Or you can build off source worst case (will need to install Xcode command line tools for that).


    Since you mention R, more memory is better long term. It is extremely memory dependent. In that it doesn't use swap/page file space on a disk drive. it works completely from RAM memory when working with data. So have a fair bit of it installed if you can for future proofing.

    Drive size...I would not go below 256. main reason is you may or may not at some point be running virtuals. Some data science related class work I have done had 2 options. Use web based linux application servers (they only coded for linux, usually only debian or RH flavor family members)....no guidance readily found to build off source so if that route chosen....have fun and hope it works lol) or make your own.

    I opted for the later most times. So to get some linux servers up I vm'd it. Instructors I had like the latter option as well as in the real world they said you might be standing these up anyway so best to get some prac app at it sooner than later. Also found with publics if you get enough people hitting it....you can wait a bit for your stuff to get its turn. Local server it can go much faster since it just be you. Won't have their assumed higher end servers but....you aren't waiting for several requests to process before yours hit either. Pick your poison here really basically.
     
  11. Moghaak thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 20, 2016
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    Canada
    #11
    Okay, well by Windows machine, I mean dual booted with Linux. I hardly ever used windows on that other then doing word processing or powerpoint or printing files.

    Good point that you mentioned about R, almost forgot about that lol. Okay now this makes be bit nervous regarding my choice.

    WRT Virtual environment, well I am going to use AWS for processing of large data. One question though, if I have a USB3 hard drive, wouldn't it be able to process data directly from the drive? Although, I understand the risks and implications such as being slow and susceptible to being unplugged while processing etc. But don't you thing generally, it should work?

    As far as data's concern, I will be getting around 80-100 GB free after all software installs (that I need) and my music and photo collection is not that huge. 2 GB musing and 10 GB photos which will both lie on my hard drive. So in terms of storage, I am not that usey person.

    But thank you got some really interesting insight from hiddenmarkov and jerryk's answer. I didn't think much about these issues.
     
  12. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #12
    OP:

    I suggest that you hold off from your buying decision until the first week of August (if there is any way possible for you to do that).

    Good things may be in the pipeline!
     
  13. xWhiplash macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    #13
    The thing with waiting is that brand new models might.....MIGHT suffer from some defects. If you are an early adopter and understand those risks, then go ahead and wait. If not, and you want a computer that has been designed and worked for years, then buy one now.

    If you do wait, add another couple of months AFTER the release date in order to avoid getting systems with hardware defects.
     
  14. Moghaak thread starter macrumors newbie

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  15. jerryk macrumors 68020

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    Nov 3, 2011
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    SF Bay Area
    #15
    So what are you buying?
     
  16. Moghaak thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 20, 2016
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    #16
    I am gonna go for MBP 13" base model with one upgrade. 256 GB storage.
     
  17. jerryk macrumors 68020

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    SF Bay Area
    #17
    Nice machine. Enjoy.
     

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