What would you do being in my shoes ( which macbook to pick )

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by icecoldart, Oct 13, 2012.

  1. icecoldart, Oct 13, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2012

    icecoldart macrumors member


    Mar 30, 2012
    Hello folks.

    Sorry for another thread of this kind but it's so freaking hard to decide, with your heart desiring one macbook over another but your mind telling you to act rational and stick to safe solutions.

    So here's my long story short.

    I will be flying over to San Diego in January and i'm planning to buy myself my first mac which will happen to be a macbook, for the sake of portability and general all in one solution.

    I'm a digital artist an i'll be studying art at an art ateleir in Encinitas, so i plan to do both illustration/concept art work at the place i'll be staying at alongside doing some digital figure drawing at the atelier.

    My tools of trade are Adobe Photoshop and Corel painter.
    I'll be doing quite layer heavy work to begin with, so getting the 8GB of RAm is the absolute minimum.

    Now it all comes to which one to pick, cMBP with Anti-Glare screen variant or the Unfamous for it's flaws and issues MBPr. One thing you have to know, that i will be on a tight budged as the money i've saved will have to last me for 6 months of studying and living. Getting ANY of those macboks stretches my budged as i planned to go with the Asus N76vz at first, but it has some major design/technical problems of it's own so i've decided to finally go with Apple. I've played around with macbook air and Mountain Lion at my loacal Mall. And all i can tell that fell in love with both the machine and OSX but air is out of my concern due to lack of processing power.

    I will be doing color sensitive work, and quite some multitasking.
    Now the retina is an IPS panel, BUT has the glare screen nontheless.
    The cMBP AG on the other hand has all the missing ports and a DVD drive, which would most likely act as a secondary drive bay in the future.

    If i'd go for the Retina then it's amazon as i heard that i'd only have to pay the flat price of 2.199 USD versus going to apple store and getting the CMBP AG.

    When we add up the tax and cost of ram and the hdd upgrade to atleast 7200 RPM it looks like this:

    Retina 2.3 8GB ..blah blah blah = 2.199$

    cMBP 2.3( 2054$ with tax ) +8GB RAM(55$) + 7200RPM HDD (85$)= 2194 ( with future 512GB SSD upgrade )

    Which is about the same price point. Now getting back to that heart and mind game, i desire the retina as it's the IPS panel, It's ultra crisp with all of it's glory. But i Lose the ability to upgrade, i'm at risk of getting either image retention panel or light bleed or both! I'd then have to send it back to amazon ( do they cover the returns or do i have to do it ) losing the ability to work for possibly several days. Waiting for a replacement which can be as bad or worse as the previous one, ofcourse assuming it's flawed in any way. As there ARE happy retina owners, but it's a lottery from what i can see that's happening.

    Now normally i would not even bother with a mobile workstation and just get Macbook AIR instead and buy an iMAC for more heavy duty work ( i sometimes do movie work and photo presentations for DVD players)
    Plus i'd get that 27" inches with a lot of place for my refference images and work area. But you know, that would cut out the " painting from live model thing right away" plus i'd have to pay extra $$ for additional bagage at the airport and paying a phat european 23% VAT when i land home. Making this a whole lot expensive than just buying a notebook.

    Also i'm pretty sure that when i'm back home after those 6 months i'd just get a 27" IPS dell panel and hook it to my macbook pro anyway, but getting a laptop i will still have the ability to work in the field.

    Now what would you do in my place ( considering all pros and cons of both laptops ) knowing that getting either of these notebooks will result in buying less and cheaper food, and other stuff just to survive :/ ( student life blargh... )

    P.S Hunting down a refurbished AG macbook is really hard nowadays, when they are avaialble it's a matter of hours when they vanish into oblivion....I can't afford to hope and wait...
  2. McGiord macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2003
    Dark Castle
    Save money. The retina MBP is too expensive and in a few months it will be replaced with a faster an more powerful machine that will cost the same or even less.
    Go with a 13 or 15" MBP, get the RAM and SSD in sites like www.macsales.com , and check prices and bundles in www.macmall.com .
    You can always connect to an external monitor.
    You can give the iMac a try, and sell it before returning to Europe, this can save you some money and get more power, but limits your mobility.
    Don't forget getting a couple of external HDD to backup all your data.
    I do prefer having a portable machine, and for the kind of work you want to do I will also need to have a big screen I can connect to.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I vote for the rMBP, excellent computer but if you think the glare is going to be an issue then the cMBP with the anti-glare display may be a better fit
  4. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    If your budget is on the tight side, try looking for a 2011 high res 15" or a 17" (AG) on the apple refurb site or various 3rd party resellers. Take the savings from that to put into 8 or 16 gigs of ram and a SSD drive. You'll have a perfectly usable machine to use for the next couple of years. You can always jump into a retina later on....they're probably not going to quit making them in the next couple of years.
  5. icecoldart, Oct 13, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2012

    icecoldart thread starter macrumors member


    Mar 30, 2012
    Thank you for the input guys, but i won't ivest any money in a passe technology of 2011 either. Only 2012 refurbs are an option since i will be selling my still powerful 2010 desktop pc just to get some more $. So i will need the most out of new specs .

    And the GT650m graphics card > all the crappy radeons.
    I have had many ati graphic cards and not one more, NEVER!
    I dedicate myself to nvidia and OSX for he next couple of years.
    And i forgot to mention that i want to do some gaming from time to time, I used to be a hardcore gamer but i've set priorities in my life, which will do me good. I hope! ha! :D

    Can anyone confirm that ordering the rMBP from amazon to Encinitas, CA adress will be just a flat price? or it's just a internet gossip. I've never ordered anything from them yet and the eauropean amazon sites have prices either in Euros or British pounds which makes it even more expensive.

    Now for all you fellow americans it's "just" 2199 usd and for me it's 2199 x 3.17 ( exchange rates suck :/ ) making it 6970

    Now imagine paying 6970 dollars for a laptop, insane huh? But believe me it's still cheaper, than getting the european verson which would cost me 8k+

    P.S I've only seen the 2012 macbook air live, as there's no apple reseller near where i live and i'd have to go quite far to get to an official apple reseller store ( but i will eventually ) Is the glare on retina similiar or less?
    If it's similiar then it should not be much of an issue.
  6. stevelam macrumors 65816

    Nov 4, 2010
    do you seriously think corel painter would ever be updated for retina display? highly unlikely. and photoshop isn't updated either. good luck working in blurry conditions all of the time on your RMBP.
  7. bill-p macrumors 68000

    Jul 23, 2011
    Amazon collects taxes normally, so I don't think you can get a new rMBP without tax there.

    As far as the rMBP goes, it supports a 1920 x 1200 scaled mode, so for those applications that don't support Retina yet, you still get significantly more screen real estate to work with than a regular cMBP.

    And if you can change your workflow, SketchBook Pro 6 on the App Store (goes for about $60 if I'm not mistaken) supports the Retina screen. I know it isn't like Corel Painter... but I think it's a good stop-gap until Adobe Photoshop gets an update sometimes this year.

    As far as reflections go, I think the rMBP has cut down on those significantly. The anti-glare is still the best choice in the fight against reflections, but neither anti-glare nor Retina can stand up against direct sunlight. Plus anti-glare has this constant milky haze layer on top of anything... that reduces contrast and sharpness significantly.
  8. pgiguere1, Oct 13, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2012

    pgiguere1 macrumors 68020


    May 28, 2009
    Montreal, Canada
    I have owned a MacBook Air, glossy cMBP and rMBP. I would say the rMBP's glossiness is in between a MBA and glossy cMBP, closer to the MBA. So it's a bit more glossy than a MBA, but I find the glare a bit less distracting since the glass cover is 100% flat and produces a constant reflection, whereas the plastic screen cover on the MBA is a wobbly surface (like most plastic displays) and produces a slightly distorted reflection that kind of changes as you move your head around.

    As for the rMBP compared to the matte cMBP, the rMBP's screen is actually a bit less reflective. The difference is that the reflection on the matte cMBP will be a smooth gradient instead of having hard edges, washing out what's on your screen instead of producing a clear reflection. However, if you simply measure the amount of light that reflects on the display to know how much your content will be affected by the reflection, the rMBP is the least reflective of all MacBook Pros. You can see a comparison image of the matte cMBP and rMBP reflection here, and here's a whole post explaining the phenomenon.

    I personally think the rMBP's screen is much better than the matte cMBP's. Colors always stay rich and full of contrast, viewing angles are perfect, not to talk of the insane resolution which you can easily switch scaling modes depending on your task. I find the 1920x1200 scaling option useful at times when I'm doing serious work that requires screen real estate. The rMBP's screen is the best I have ever seen (better than the iPad 3's given OS X's sub-pixel anti-aliasing) and had no screen retention issue with mine, nor did my friend who also bought one.

    The weight difference on the rMBP is also quite significant in real-world usage. The rMBP is even slightly lighter than a 13" MBP, and that's a really good thing if you're going to travel a lot with it.

    Where I think the cMBP has a serious advantage is the storage options. You can fit 2 2.5" drives in there an upgrade them as much as you want. A dual-drive setup like HDD+SSD is something I wish I could have in my rMBP. Depending on how much storage you need, the cMBP might be a better choice for that reason alone.

    Another thing to consider is that Photoshop / Corel Painter have not been updated to support Retina display yet. The Photoshop update should come very soon and no word about Corel Painter. It will likely come in the future too since all Macs will slowly come to use Retina Displays, it's just a matter of when. Developers can't ignore the fact that it will become the new standard. In the meantime it's better to set your screen to its native 2880x1800 (no HiDPI) while using those applications and deal with the tiny icons, it's better than having everything be blurry.

    Hope that helps you with your decision!
  9. 73CortinaV8 macrumors 6502

    Sep 4, 2006
    Palo Alto, CA
    I used Corel Painter on an rMBP and it works perfectly fine. And you can always use the rMBP in 1-to-1 pixel mode where any fuzziness issues go away.

    OP: get the rMBP, spring for the extra memory. The ssd will be upgradeable at some point.
  10. iLukeJoseph macrumors 6502

    Dec 20, 2011
  11. icecoldart thread starter macrumors member


    Mar 30, 2012
    Thank you very much you gave me alot to think about. I apreciate every single comment.

    No educational discount for me mate, it's a private ateleir not an acredited unniversity of some sort...

    Oh well we'll see it's still 3 more months.

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