Undecided between 2013 rMBP and 2015 MBA

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by hibanzai, Mar 22, 2016.

  1. hibanzai, Mar 22, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2016

    hibanzai macrumors member

    Jul 24, 2011
    I need help figuring this out. I am undecided between the two machines. Normally I would pick the rMBP because it has much better specs: 512 SSD,8GB, upgraded CPU vs the 2015 MBA basic spec (128,4,1.6GHz), but its age is making me hesitant.

    I have owned apple products before but not mac computers, and I have noticed that the quality control has been decreasing with time, so I am not sure about the 2013+ models being able to last 5-6 years easy like older macs. But it is well spec'd and I see myself being content with it, as there might not be a reason for me to upgrade if it doesn't fail that is. No applecare either. I really can't afford to fix anything on it, should anything fail. Price is $730.

    2015 MBA is a dated product spec wise, but under warranty and not used as much as a 2013 machine. still eligible for applecare. price is $610.

    I type a lot. Pages, Word and a dedicated screenwriting software. Browse a lot (preferably on firefox). I open a lot of tabs at times. I open big PDF files. I edit my raw photos with lightroom. I edit 1080 footage from time to time. Nothing extensive, and I don't mind editing in proxy as opposed to in native resolutions. I also encode some media from time to time to make it compatible with my media player.

    I am not leaning to either machine, very much undecided. I like the price of the air and I think I am getting a good deal. The price of the rMBP is not bad either, I think. Very much looking for a machine that will last me at least 3 years whilst getting the best deal at the same time. Need to make a decision by tomorrow.
  2. adam9c1 macrumors 68000


    May 2, 2012
    I would lean towards the rMBP. If you decide at some point you can upgrade the SSD to a larger. It already has 8GB so it's pretty solid (non upgradeable).

    I think with used machines it's a hit or miss.

    I would inspect both computers physically and factor that into equation.
    I'm rockin' a 2010 13" MBP that I paid $120 or so premium over what they were selling for but...
    - one owner device
    - two tiny scratches
    - if not for the oily keyboard you could not tell it's a used machine

    EDIT: I think I would go with the 8GB RAM vs 4GB RAM unit.
  3. hibanzai thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 24, 2011
    I like the rMBP as a laptop far more than the MBA, if they were the same age. it has a 512GB, so that's not too shabby. far better than the 128 in the MBA.

    I will perform a diagnostic test and inspect the ports. what else can I do to put my mind at ease with a 3 year old machine?
  4. adam9c1 macrumors 68000


    May 2, 2012
    Coconut battery app. Check health of battery.

    If possible (long shot) take it to Apple Store to run their diag
  5. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    The retina MBP is still a better computer with better connections and a far better screen it should be fine for 3 years but any computer can die at any time for any number of reasons.
  6. Fancuku macrumors 6502a


    Oct 8, 2015
    PA, USA
    Easy decision then. 2013 rMBP and no looking back.

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