What are MBP's technically for?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by royalgfx1, Oct 15, 2014.

  1. royalgfx1 macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    I simply am wondering what justifies such a powerful computer. I have friends who buy MBP retinas, simply using it for Chrome, Twitter, and maybe sometimes Photoshop.

    I use my MBP 2011, 8GB ram, 2.2 i7, and I feel as though I truly "need" it, as I use Ableton Live everyday with multiple third party VST's, and even with the ram upgrade, it still buffers, and there's constant latency issues due to heat. I've even replaced the fans and battery, and the heat is still an issue. I did a geekbench and got 2278 on the single core and 8000 on multiple. The new 15 retinas only get an average of 3028 on single and 11610 on multiple. I'm thinking of upgrading, but really, the geekbench marks don't seem to have a HUGE dramatic difference.

    Anywho, I simply wonder what you all use your MBP's for, and if you believe your use is justified.
  2. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816


    Apr 19, 2014
    I have no need for a MBP. I can do 85% of what I do on my 2011 MBP on my 2005 PowerBook, with the exceptions being compiling large programs and watching videos. Everything else is pretty basic word processing, email, browsing, and programming.
  3. royalgfx1 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    That's what I don't get. I mean, I assume the current MBA's can handle some simple Googling and Photoshopping. Tomorrows MBA's (if announced), even more so.

    I just don't understand why people feel the need to get a Retina, when they really have no use for it. By the same token, I wonder if I need one myself.
  4. Redsfan macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2012
    Greater Toronto Area
    screen difference is enough of a factor for us to choose the pro for our daughter..that is like saying regular standard def vs. high def tv's. You don't need it but the quality difference is much better..
  5. royalgfx1 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    But, no one needs a higher retina display. The MBA sales are testement to that. I'm complaining about people wasting money, which is pointless, as it will never change.

    I'm just looking for reason to upgrade my 2011. These overheating issues are getting ****ing ridiculous, as it makes my machine unusable for hard core audio work.

    So many people have complained about the 2011 overheating, and Apple's done ****ing nothing.
  6. Redsfan macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2012
    Greater Toronto Area
    nobody needs any type of mac if you think about it...to say nobody needs something is not fair, as those that buy like certain aspects about it..ie faster, retina, etc. For the small price difference it made sense in my mind whether or not it was overtly necessary. If I want to watch movies, or just do any type of work I don't see the problem going with the best screen available. Do you also buy a cheaper cell phone, forgoing an inferior model?
  7. royalgfx1 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    I don't know. I don't think anyone needs an iPhone, really. I work in a phone store at a retail level, and people come in demanding the iPhone 6. They have smashed screens, and new a new phone right away. I recommend them a cheaper Android device, which will do Instagram, Safari, What'sApp and all the basic stuff just fine, if not better...these people would rather go without a phone for three weeks, than get an Android. That's ****ed up to me.
  8. Spink10 Suspended


    Nov 3, 2011
  9. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Oct 31, 2009
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    I recently moved from the pro software suites into much cheaper software. When I first bought a MacBook Pro in 2006, I was using Photoshop, InDesign, and Dreamweaver, and then I had to learn Illustrator, After Effects, Flash Professional, and Autodesk Maya. I got rid of all of that this year and switched to other stuff, which still benefits from having the extra specs.

    I don't see all that working too well on an Air. Not when I get into the massive files anyway.

    Tried Android, my phone didn't last me six months.
  10. royalgfx1 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    More clarification is needed. Are you saying your iPhone 6 was the cost of a 13 MBA, because, that's messed up.
  11. lokster macrumors 6502


    Feb 7, 2010
    i just use mine for tethering for my dslr, then photoshop and of course photo sorting. Honestly the display is much more better than the other laptops IMO.

    And i bought it 2nd hand to help a friend :D
  12. simonsi macrumors 601


    Jan 3, 2014
    People buy cars that exceed their actual requirements all the time...
  13. blooperz macrumors 6502

    Dec 10, 2013
    whats a Porsche technically for? It's the same thing... If you have the money to enjoy the finer things in life than why shouldn't you, not everyone wants to drive a ford.
  14. bushido Suspended


    Mar 26, 2008
    cuz a non retina mbp gives my eye cancer by now. seriously all i see is pixels plus isnt every standard macbook pro retina now anyway starting at 1.100€?

    retina gets even more important on the optimized Yosemite
  15. royalgfx1 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    Technically, and if we are being literal, you could argue that a Porsche is a sportscar, and it serves its purpose as being a fast machine. If you were thoroughly into race car driving, you wouldn't wanna take a Toyota Camry to the track, as that doesn't serve its original purpose. If you were a track driver on weekends, I would see that Porsche as a justified purpose, as an extension of a hobby.

    I'm saying that the Macbook Pro Retina is a high-class machine. This is obviously evident within the computers very name. We see high-end users such as graphic animators using them in tutorials. We see music producers using them.

    If you can buy one, go nuts, but in my personal opinion, you're only gaining the ability to say "I have the best", which seems pointless. I'm feeling gluttonous in having a 2011 and wanting a Retina, and I'm attempting to justify buying it by saying I need it for music purposes. Perhaps an SSD would solve all my issues, but my computer is running at a steady 83 all the ****ing time. It burns my lap. And I'm sick of sinking money into this 2011 laptop, which is renknowned for heat issues. That Haswell prospect, tho.


    I don't even want Yosemite, too many VST incompatibilities. I have to wait until at least a year into the next OS cycle so I can be sure it doesn't **** up all my things.
  16. NathanA macrumors 6502a

    Feb 9, 2008
    Back In The Day, when I was still buying ThinkPads, I purchased upper-end models because even at the pace that Moore's Law was going, I played the occasional FPS, HTML renderers were becoming more and more complex (try running a modern web browser and then visit a current web site on a Pentium 2 sub-GHz machine...some people "just browse the web", but rarely do people think about what that actually means and the kind of horsepower that something seemingly so simple and supposedly computationally non-intensive actually requires), and hard drives were still slow as dirt (so any little gains in performance there were important). I swore off desktop PCs before the new millennium, because portability was important to me, so yeah, you pay a pretty penny in order to be able to have both portability AND power.

    The truth is, though, that these days, it feels like modern software's ability to outstrip the hardware it is being used on is becoming less and less of an issue. People who "just" browse the web, use a word processor, fire up the occasional game, and even use a VM or two could EASILY get by with a lower-tier machine and never miss the maybe 10-15% performance gain that comes with a 50%+ greater MSRP. I could probably get by with a MacBook Air, and actually, often when I travel, I end up bringing JUST my Air with me (an older 2010 model). As thin and light as the rMBP is, the Air is still that much more portable and easy to travel with and carry around, and for the most part, it does all the stuff that I need it to do.

    But I *still* bought an rMBP on release day (2012 model) and use it nearly every day. Not because I needed (or thought I needed) the quad-core i7. Not because I needed all of that RAM. Not even because I needed the slightly faster SSD when compared to the one in my Air (and, yes, I am SO glad traditional spinning disks are a dying breed...if Apple only offered flash storage in higher-end Mac laptops, then I wouldn't even bother with the Air), or because I thought I would benefit from the extra performance of the discrete nVidia graphics chip.

    I bought it solely because of the screen.

    If the Air came with a Retina display, then I would be perfectly content with a Retina Air. But it doesn't (...yet...), so guess what: I bought an rMBP. And the 2012 rMBP still suits me just fine here in the good ol' year 2014, and will probably continue to suit me just fine until a Retina Air is introduced, at which point I will probably transition over to that.

    Despite all of the problems that Apple's LCD suppliers have had with refining the technology (uneven calibration/white point, backlight bleed, image retention, etc.) and the resultant "display lottery", it is still absolutely worth it. I have been using high-ish-DPI IPS LCD displays since *2004*, when I got my ThinkPad T42p with a 15" UXGA (1600x1200) "FlexView" (IBM's trademark for their IPS option) display. By today's standards, 133 DPI isn't so amazing, but boy, that was some panel when that generation of laptop hit the market. Back then, IBM were actually innovators. IPS wasn't even a twinkle in Apple's eye at that time, and the PowerBook and MacBook Pro lines shipped with crappy, low-res displays for *years* after that (as did most other PC laptops). Reading text on that ThinkPad was a revelation, as was looking at photographs. I could never go back after that.

    Then the iPhone 4 came out, and I knew at that point (and also after the iPad which, despite note being Retina-density, was still IPS) that Apple had to be looking at ways that they could bring higher-DPI and more color-accurate displays to their personal computers. I vowed that whenever Apple finally released a portable with a high-DPI IPS display, they would earn my business. And they did.

    It's true that I also own and use an Air, and while I'm traveling, I do get by just fine with it. But every time I go back to using the Retina MacBook, my eyes thank me.

    -- Nathan
  17. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Look OP, it's my money. I wonder why the hell do you want to know how I justify my spending? If I want to waste my money, that's my problem, not yours.

    And sure, cheaper Androids get the same thing done as on an iPhone, just slower and without the nice user experience. IMO, the few seconds saved here and there with an iPhone, along with a nice user experience is totally worth the massive premium.
  18. TechGod macrumors 68040


    Feb 25, 2014
    New Zealand
    I must mention that high end Android devices such as the Nexus 6 are amazing IMO...


    Because I wanted a better display and an SSD and as a student I like lightweight laptops.

    I could get a cheaper laptop but I don't WANT a cheaper laptop.
  19. anarti macrumors regular

    Nov 28, 2012
    Need for Pro is when you need "power". I need it for Lightroom for instance when processing images. Quad core + 16GB of ram with a very fast SSD is the reciept for a success.

    For the web browsing etc etc Air would be all right....but the screen is awful. That's why 13inch retina is much better choice right now unless you absolutely need a 11inch Air that weights just over a 1kg.

    At this time, I think it is all about the screen quality. If retina Air comes out, it would be far more easier to choose air instead of pro.
  20. bennibeef macrumors 6502

    May 22, 2013
    Could I do my work on a 2010 netbook? Yes.
    Would it suck? Yes.
    Does this make me happy? No.

    Come on that easy.

    I'm programming and for that you dont need the best cpu but its kinda nice to help build times with an SSD. If you compiling a program many times a day waiting for it sux.

    Could it be done on a modern macbook air? Sure! Do I want just a 13 inch display? No. I would be much happier to look at an retina screen all day but I also "just" have the 2011 macbook.

    An Air with external display? Works for it, but when I dont want to use another display I'm stuck with the small one.

    And the thing at most: I get work done on my machine it makes me money. I dont have random problems popping up with my macs which all the money worth it and get my work done. Does this machine cost 2000$? I dont care as long I'm happy with it. Happy programmer = good programmer.
  21. Woochoo macrumors 6502

    Oct 12, 2014
    On one side, people can spend their money on what they want, and they don't have to justify it if they've earned their own money.

    But on the other side, I understand part of the OP point of view, in the sense of: people are going "Shut up and take my money" every day more and more, without even knowing exactly what are they buying (it could be fulfilled inside with cow s.h.*.t and they wouldn't realize), so Apple is realizing that they can put mid-low end stuff inside for the price of gold, and people will still be buying it just because its "Apple stuff".

    That said, again: everybody can waste their money in what they want, but they should have more criteria and be more demanding on the stuff they buy.

    P.S: we will see today if Apple is going Core M (low end CPU oriented to tablets & low performance fanless devices) or not. If they quit the mid range CPU to go low end, I'm gonna laugh a lot, because they won't make it cheaper but more expensive (with the retina panel excuse)
  22. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    A MBP is a lightweight multi-purpose almost-workstation. There is no specific niche it are designed for, its great strength is that is can do basically everything, although certainly a specialised laptops will be better if that is the only thing you need to do.

    I use a MBP instead of an MBA because a) I need the extra processing power and b) I need the screen for editing. Other than that, I don't agree tha for t getting an expensive computer is a waste of money. If you get a machine for $2200 and keep it for three years, you have effectively spent $60 per month. That is a fairly reasonable price in my opinion. I don't see how its better to get a cheap laptop if you might hate every minute of interacting with it. My MBP is definitely reducing my stress level, I can clearly notice it from the short episodes I have to work with Windows on Dells and Lenovos ;)
  23. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

    Jun 15, 2008
    Sagittarius A*
    I could probably manage with an Air as I do most of my hard work on the modded very fast for an old un Mac Pro 3,1. I have a nice tiny Acer Aspire One AA5 running Peppermint 3 with 32Gb SSD and 1.5Gb ram that runs very fast. For a netbook :D

    I find any dual core Mac even with an SSD too annoyingly slow for my own use, I am used to fast, I do not like to wait. But I've always liked a fast laptop with a big screen, a replaceable hard drive drive which in my late 2011 17" is now a 1Tb SSD with 16gb ram, have the occasional work on photoshop, Lightroom, Quark and Illustrator and have to burn the odd boot CD/DVD off for upgrading clients gear.

    It's also my primary iTunes host - has all my 14 iOS devices on encrypted backups to save me a lot of cash, privacy and speed doing USB restores and upgrades beats the pants off iCloud. Bearing in mind iTunes is getting more bloated and slower with every new release that comes out being fast is good!
  24. snorkelman macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2010
    Its my works money

    At time i bought last one there was a 13" retina with 256gb ssd and 8gb of ram in the local apple store for immediate purchase, versus CTO for the same ram and ssd combo on the Air

    I hardly consider the 13" retina mac book a 'pro' anyway - a mid range laptop with nice screen and build quality but some sort of mobile workstation powerhouse its not.

    Seen way too many 'pros' sitting there with their mbps permanently glued to a desk with fans a-whirring and hot air blowing, when what they should have bought was a mac pro not a macbook pro Never made sense to me
  25. Merode macrumors 6502


    Nov 5, 2013
    Warszawa, Poland
    I've bought mine to hammer nails with class. I find MBA too light for this task.

    Sometimes I even use it as cutting board.

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