Upgrading to the mid-2012 from the early-2011

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by darnocs, Nov 3, 2016.

  1. darnocs macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2009
    I know many people love the recently released MacBook Pros, but I honestly can't say I feel the same way about them. I remember the days when a MacBook Pro sold for just over $1k, and I think it's safe to say those days are gone. I like being able to max out my hardware without spending nearly $2k, as I use my Mac pretty extensively, and the wide variety in I/O ports is critical for me. But I need a 13" for portability.

    I plan on sticking with Mac for the foreseeable future, and as a small business owner who runs both businesses from my computer (including various software programs, website managing, etc) and school, and being a heavy multitasker, I tend to max out my resources pretty quickly. The comparison here seems like the high-end (2.9 GHz i7 Ivy Bridge) 13" 2012 MacBook Pro (if I'm doing my math right) is about 125% more powerful/faster in benchmark tests than the entry level (2.3 GHz i5 Sandy Bridge) early 2011 MBP I own now. I currently have a 1 TB hybrid drive and 16 GB of RAM in my computer, and if I upgrade, I'm planning on having a 1 TB Samsung EVO 850 SSD and 16 GB of RAM as well, because the way I see it, that would be the highest possible quality non-retina MBP that is still in existence.

    So…your opinions on whether selling my current Mac and upgrading is a good idea? Remember, I'm thinking long-term: I want to stick with this current form factor as long as I can, but with the best possible specs. Does that sound like a fairly future-proof machine?
  2. mbpmo macrumors member

    Mar 19, 2015
    Absolutely is.
    And the nice thing about the 2012 13" 2.9 set up the way you describe, is it is only slightly slower w/ HDD (if slower at all w/SSD) than the 2015 3.1 13" rMBP... ie- those numbers on everymac for the 2012 are with a HDD not a SSD. And you'll be able to work on it with out ruining half the stuff you have to take out to work on even the batteries, in the rMBPs.

    I think Apple finally pulled it because it was so fast with a SSD that it made the retinas look bad.
  3. Gregintosh macrumors 68000

    Jan 29, 2008
    Honestly this is a mistake. You might as well get a used Retina 13" or 15" from 2012 or 2013 or something. You could still get 16GB of RAM, a nice and fast SSD, and a lighter unit. Plus the retina screen is SO MUCH BETTER.

    Since those have SD slots, you can buy a big SD card for storage to make up for it. It won't be as fast an SSD but it's fine for storage. I have that setup now.
  4. darnocs thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2009
    To both answerers: Would simply upgrading my 2011 i5 machine to a 1 TB SSD (Samsung EVO 850 probably) be a good compromise? I have a 2011 Air and it's pretty darn fast for having 4 GB of RAM on El Capitan - due to the flash storage.
  5. MICHAELSD macrumors 68040


    Jul 13, 2008
    Why not buy a Retina 13"? The prices should be pretty similar on used models.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 13, 2016 ---
    Personally I wouldn't spend the money to upgrade it when it's money better-spent on a Retina 13". World of difference.
  6. darnocs thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2009
    I have my eye on a number of good condition 2012 i7 top end models for between $550-$650. Haven't seen anything around that price for retinas, even lower end ones. I like that I can max out the storage and upgrade it if need be in the future with the older MBP. Also DIY repairs are easier to do, which saves money in the longish run.

    Other than the screen, how much quantifiably better is a similarly priced Retina 13" than the high end 2012 MBP?
  7. fyun89 macrumors 6502

    Oct 3, 2014
    I would personally recommend 2013+ laptops now for following reasons:

    1. 2013 is the year Apple adopted 802.11 AC
    2. Have more time before becoming obsolete (you have a choice to get it repaired by Apple or 3rd party)
    3. Battery life is actually usable for nearly all day computing (5+ hour)
    4. Retina display
    5. Thunderbolt 2 -- possible eGPU for upgradability
    6. Thinner and lighter than prev gen macbook pro
    7. Better fan, less noise
    8. USB 3.0
    9. Obvious one, but still worth noting -- better performance than the earlier ones

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