What would you buy with $2000.00?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by bluebird3, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. bluebird3, Jun 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2013

    bluebird3 macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    hello, I've saved up money and ready to buy me my very first Mac book (pro/air/r/c) lap top computer, however I can't pull the trigger yet. I'm very confused to what to buy and when to buy.

    im needing one for a personal home computing purpose. I will mostly be using it for e mailing, web browsing, Skype chat, downloading personal photos and editing and organizing, then also use itune alot by importing music from cds, itune/amazon digital purchase and then ripping ( burning?) them onto empty cds or into my ipod. I also like to watch my dvds in bed or on the plane if I travel, especially foreign reginal coded dvds.

    Do I need Pro or Air ?

    Do I need Pro or Retina ?

    Do I want 13" or 15" ?

    Do I buy new or used with many memory up grades like 1TB and software such as CS5, etc?

    Do I buy refurbished from Apple web site ?

    Do I need an Apple care ? I've used and owned Mac since the 80s and never looked back. all my desk top (my current is power Mac g4 dual mirror drive lol) had never given me any issues.

    What about wireless device....

    Do I need Airport Express, Time Capsule, or Extreme? new model with "ac" or older model with "n" since none of ? the Mac book currently support "ac" yet?

    Finally, do I wait few more months ? until new model comes out?

    I know I have so many options and it's a very big shopping for me. I worked very hard trying to saving money for this. I'm looking to do the best purchase for the money and I'd like your advice/opinion/help please.
  2. newdeal macrumors 68020

    Oct 21, 2009
    Seeresponses in bold

  3. LoMonkey macrumors regular

    Jul 4, 2008
    Ok, I'm going help you out, but first you have to help me, help you.

    First, what do you prefer? Power or form factor?

    Power - (Retina) MacBook Pro
    Form factor - MacBook Air

    Only you can answer this question. Same goes for 13" or 15" screens (or 11" in the case of the smaller Air). Most people on this forum find 13" to be perfect. I personally prefer 15", as it's what I've always used, so I'm biased.

    Used vs. New - I would say stay clear of used computers if you're worried about spending your hard-earned money on a flimsy purchase. You never know what someone has done to a used computer until it's too late. Refurbished (from Apple), on the other hand, is a different story. You can find some really good deals this way. If you go the new route, I recommend going through a reseller and buying an older model. You can find some really good deals on June 2012 rMBP of around 27% off through MacMall right now. That's a damn good deal for a damn good computer. Keep in mind, you'll need a SuperDrive (or third-party equivalent) for your CD needs, but you'll have a great, compact computer for at least 4-5 years!

    AppleCare. Personally, I don't feel the need for this. I've had my same Mac for 5 years now, and the only problem I've had is the 8600GT graphics card problem, which was covered under recall.

    Airport Express. I find a normal router is sufficient for myself, as well as most people. The models in your price range (aside from the Airs) don't even have WiFi ac, so don't bother.

    The waiting game. Ah yes, my favorite game. It all depends on your needs. If you feel you can wait longer, you might have a better chance at getting a good deal. When new technology comes out, older tech becomes cheaper. So the computer you want now, could be cheaper as the new (r)MBPs come out in (hopefully) the next few months. Worst case is, however, the computer you're looking to get now might not change in price or be sold out altogether.
  4. thundersteele macrumors 68030

    Oct 19, 2011
    Concerning the foreign DVDs: The Mac superdrive can be set to different country codes, however you can only change the setting a limited number of times (5 I think)... after that it's done.
  5. fenjen, Jun 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2013

    fenjen macrumors 6502


    Nov 9, 2012
    For the things you said you want to do I would buy the cheapest you can get. You don't need the best CPU or the most RAM for internet browsing and basic computing. Even for just light photo editing the i5 will be more then enough. I would say you only need to think about which Hard drive suits your needs and how big of a screen you want.
  6. jcpb macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2012
  7. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    I'd get the classic MacBook Pro 13". You don't need the retina screen, and it comes with the SuperDrive (CDs, DVDs, etc). The 500 gb HDD is more than enough for music and pictures. The 13" size is perfect for air travel. For RAM you'd probably be fine with 4 gb for now. You can always upgrade later for less money than Apple charges.

    AppleCare is a definite with HDDs. I'm on drive #3 on my 2009.

    As far as airport, I've never used one. I've used routers provided by my ISP and a Cisco. For extra storage and backups i have a couple Western Digital drives.
  8. Anthony81586 macrumors regular

    Oct 15, 2011
    Just a heads up, the MBA doesn't have a cd drive so you can't burn cd's or play dvd's.
  9. zipur macrumors 6502a


    Mar 3, 2011
    The great state of Texas
    Get the Air! You can add a DVD Drive for movies when you need it. The air travels well, light small and has the latest processor available. 2K will get you loaded and a case, external keyboard and mouse. My wife has a MBA loaded with VM Fusion for windows stuff and that thing rocks
  10. devilcm3 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 3, 2011
    South Melbourne, Australia
    if you have 2k.
    and you spend it on an air.
    that is utter stupidity.

    a 13" retina would be the best value for that price, BUT .. wait for the refresh
  11. bluebird3 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    I'm learning.....
    I'm now thinking of pro with none retina...
    can't decide on 13" or 15" at all. I've noticed the resolution is better? with 15". also it looks like has a better? speaker altho I'm thinking on purchasing a wireless speaker. also I'm now thinking that the price won't drop and only will be available while supply last. I don't know tho why Apple would want to drop optical drive ... I feel many will suffer even I'm aware of our modern digital technology, many of us still rely on disk...

    anyway, why does 13" only has dual processors.on both i5, and i7? vs quad core i7 on 15", yet mghz is faster? ( 2.9 ) than 15" (2.3)?

    sorry I really don't know...
  12. devilcm3 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 3, 2011
    South Melbourne, Australia
    15" has higher resolution, but more importantly screen estate.

    nah, i think they all the same ... the only difference is that 15" have two speakers instead of one.

    heat and power consumption issues thats why no quad core..
    and don't use GHZ as the metric if you're comparing processors with different number of cores.
  13. foxf8, Jun 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2013

    foxf8 macrumors member

    Jun 30, 2013
    form factor is why the 13 inch have duo cores vs the 15inch screens have more room for better cooling to handle the heat output of quad cores. this is not just apple all 13inch laptops have duo core versions. and dont get last years versions of laptops or older. hardware wise the airs, 13inchs and 15 inch retinas have way better hardware. in my opinion is the first time in apple history where the hardware is just about worth the asking price. they are all using the newest cpus, flash storage (ssd not normal hard disk drive) for super fast read/write speeds which makes a world of a difference and anyone who has upgraded there 5400 rpm standard base line model apple ships well testify to no end how there system just tripled there speed or more. the macbook pros all start out with 8gb of ram finally a decent amount. people can argue that statement but more you have easier your system runs over all. 8 is really good even tho a average user wont max it out which is a good thing. then your system doesn't have to put more work on the cpu because of low ram. which equals lower cpu temps, cooler system, longer battery life. the airs have 4gb of ram id upgrade to 8. with the new haswell processors they have way better battery life and of course faster than older ones and with new onboard graphics u could even play todays games if u wanted to with the macbook air. as far as dvd drive you can get a usb dvd player off amazon for 30 bucks. if u really watch dvd's daily or travel alot and watch dvd's then usb would be annoying to carry around. but it would just be hard for me to recommend any of the old macbooks with the dvd drives built in to some one there base line specs are just horrible for the price there asking. if you worked hard to save your money please dont get the older models id hate for u to waste your money even if u dont max out the older specs id feel bad selling you junk specs for high price if i was selling you a macbook
  14. jcpb macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2012
    I've done without an optical drive as a PC desktop user, never mind a Mac laptop. Also, Macs are never going to get any Blu-Ray drives either as stock or upgrade directly from the Apple store, so it's meaningless.
  15. rabidz7 macrumors 65816


    Jun 24, 2012
    I recommend either a DLHR 1.67GHz PowerBook G4 15" to overclock or a 17" powerbook or MSI GT70 or MSI GX70 or any OriginPC.
  16. bluebird3 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    of course I wish to save money and not necessary spend it all.

    I do like the weight and speed of the AIR model but it's not flexible to upgrade. I would like for it to last a long time. so, then PRO RETINA? I've read usb external super dvd/cd drive reviews on Amazon and i'm concerned about the reliability besides if you had to carry that with you, then it is defeating the purpose of "light carry"...

    I wish Apple will come up with thin light weight with a long battery life and great screen with optical drive still installed. am I asking for too much?
  17. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    For $1999 you can get a classic MacBook Pro with 8 gb RAM and a 512 gb SSD. Getting it with the stock 500 gb HDD and 8 gb RAM is $1299. They start at $1199 with 4 gb RAM. The 15" classic starts at $1799.

    The retina MBP 13" starts at $1499 with a 128 gb SSD. That's very small for photos and iTunes if you don't want to buy external drives. The 15" model starts at $2199. No internal SuperDrive. Plus side is the retina display.

    For the MacBook Air, there are no options to upgrade the hard drive from 128 gb. You can upgrade the RAM and the processor, but you can only go up to 1.7 MHz i7 with turbo boosting (I don't really know what that means anyway). Also no internal SuperDrive.

    So really if you want to get the most specs for your money (or even spend less than what you've saved), I would get a 13" MacBook Pro non-Retina. You will have plenty of internal storage for photos and music, and there is a disc drive for movie watching. It will serve your uses very well. With only 2 usb ports in apple laptops, there are only so many peripherals you can attach at a time. I'd buy the base model for $1199. Then you have enough for AppleCare, software, and accessories. You can always upgrade the RAM and external storage later. Plus Mavericks is coming!

    People will tell you to always buy the latest and greatest, but if you don't need it then it's not worth spending your money on specs and features you won't use.

    I've been using a MacBook Pro from 2009 and have been very happy with it except for an annoying recurring sleep issue that burns through hard drives and hard drive cables. But technology isn't perfect. Even the retina models have their issues (and the repairs are expensive!). Of course having a 4 year old computer, the new tech is kind of lost on me.
  18. 53kyle macrumors 65816


    Mar 27, 2012
    Sebastopol, CA
  19. Ricanlegend macrumors 6502a

    Apr 21, 2009
  20. Lunfai macrumors 65816


    Nov 21, 2010
    I usually give great advice so here's my take: I would recommend an Air 13" base model. You will save money and it can do everything you want it to do. Playing music, games, skyping and watching movies is no big task for the Air.

    You can rip DVD's via an external CD/DVD drive and put these on an external hard drive. For plain trips you can take the external hard drive with you, but if you don't like that, then you can get the 256GB. You don't need the DVD drive all the time E.g traveling; you can leave it at home.

    The Air will come preloaded with a Flash SSD that will load and open applications faster, you will just feel like the computer will never hold you back for the tasks you're going to throw at it. If you feel productive then light photoshop/video editing is an option, but doing the more serious work can be challenging on a small screen, but if you adapt your work flow, you can do it.

    I would say a Retina is overkill. Unless you want a better screen you're still going to have to get the DVD external and probably USB drive. Everything else for the tasks you mentioned won't make a difference unless you want a 0.2 millisecond difference in opening applications.

    I don't recommend the old cMBP because they are heavy and not ideal for constant traveling, especially since there are more options now then the past. The standard hard drives are slow, but they are bigger. I would gladly sacrifice this for time and all round performance boost.
  21. GermanyChris macrumors 601


    Jul 3, 2011
    After you’ve used the maximum number you can just re-flash the drive firmware an it resets..


    For 2k I’d buy a base 13” MBA and put the rest back in an interest bearing account JIK
  22. Anthony81586 macrumors regular

    Oct 15, 2011
    If I were you and I wasn't doing stuff too graphics intensive (like major gaming) I would go for the 13" MBA. The weight and battery life alone make it a no brainer
  23. bluebird3, Jul 1, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2013

    bluebird3 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    Thanks everybody... I've been reading a lot on this forum and the more I read, the more I get confused. haha!

    I think I like the 15". WOW came a long way deciding that..... I like to edit and organize photos, and watch movies. I think I'd enjoy higher resolution on the 15" better (retina or not). besides It will be helpful to have more space when opening multi windows. sure I can connect the 13" to a BIG screen but that means more money otherwise not a bad idea.

    I'm more looking for power and life span (sort of speak) than just a portability especially since this new purchase will be replacing my current desk top computer Power Mac G4.

    sooo... cMBP, rMBP, or AIR in 15" ?? Ok, back to the optical drive issue.... external drive is ok I guess... that means more money. If I wanted it to last longer (you can up grade), rMBP is the way to go than the AIR correct? opps.. the AIR doesn't come with the 15".... Then, rMBP. so, then comes the question of buy it now or wait until the haswell release.. I guess I'd wait.

    I can go with the "soon to be?" discontinued cMBP 15", but still pricy today and think to myself, "why should I invest in it now?". I feel like I'll be spending hard earned cash on something that's already old and out dated....

    I'm just thinking to myself... still could use your insights.
  24. hummel003 macrumors newbie

    Jul 1, 2013
    using a 15inch laptop in the plane is a no go. Dno if u travel alot, but otherwise i would go for the 13 inch. And why are u still burning so much cds/dvd? everything is digital nowadays. I never need the use of a dvd writer anymore. Music: ipod
    movies: digital
  25. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    Keep in mind that the retina models can't be upgraded by the average consumer, so you'll need to buy ahead for what you might need for RAM and internal storage.

    Personally I wouldn't mess around with a laptop and a USB disc drive. Using my portable external hdd is annoying enough on a plane. But I'm biased against the newer tech :p

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