Which MacBook would you suggest?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by metrowarrior79, Jun 4, 2014.

  1. metrowarrior79 macrumors newbie

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    Jul 2, 2009
    #1
    I'm decided it's time for a new MacBook (My current MacBook is over 5 years old and is needing to be replaced). I'm having trouble deciding between the standard non-retina MacBook Pro and a 13" Retina MacBook Pro.

    If I purchased the Non-Retina it would be configured with Intel Core i7, upgraded to 16GB Ram, and a 1TB ATA hard Drive (5400 RPM). If I purchased the Retina MacBook it would be configured with the Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, and 1TB SSD hard drive. The Non-Retina would end up costing about $1,400 with my student discount, the Retina would cost me about $2,500 with my student discount.

    I would like this computer to last me the next 5 years or so and my main uses for the computer are email, web browsing, document editing, excel, quite a bit of iPhoto use, and some iMovie use. Is the Retina with flash hard drive really worth the extra $1,100 or would the standard MacBook Pro be a better way to go? What would you do? I appreciate all advice.
     
  2. Mooseiah macrumors member

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    Apr 12, 2014
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #2
    Is the 1TB harddrive 100% necessary for your uses? It's a serious chunk of change more than the 512GB in the SSD variety.

    Ignoring that, I am surprised anyone would consider the Non-Retina Display model at this point, especially to use for 5 years. I would say it is a no-brainer to go with the Retina, especially as the standard moves more towards all devices having higher resolution displays. Considering the much better battery life, smaller form factor and SSD, it really becomes a no-brainer. Even if opting for the 1TB SSD, I think you will certainly see $200 or so a year better experience than the old non-retina, and it should stay relevant quite a bit longer.
     
  3. kelon111 macrumors 6502

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    Mar 16, 2013
    #3

    Isn't the last non Retina MacBook Pro about 2 years old already?
    Why would you want to buy a computer that's already about 2 years outdated?
     
  4. Hieveryone macrumors 68030

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    Apr 11, 2014
    #4
    Why the extremes? You can get a refurbished 15" with 2.3/16/512 for a good price. Check Apple I forgot how much but it's a great discount.
     
  5. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #5
    +1 for this one.

    The 15" is a very powerful machine, and can play games very well too with the 750M card.
     
  6. atticus27 macrumors regular

    atticus27

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #6
    I wouldn't buy the legacy pro. For $100 more get the retina model with an SSD and the great screen. The retina models should have no problem lasting 5+ years.
     
  7. Plerf macrumors newbie

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    May 28, 2014
    #7
    Buy the rMPB with a smallish HD and get a cheapie external drive.
     
  8. meson macrumors regular

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    Apr 29, 2014
    #8
    I chose the cMBP because it offered me all of the computing power I needed, maintained some ports that I regularly use without dongles. I don't use the optical drive much, but enough that I may still miss it at this point. After years of service from my old Early 2008 MB, I knew I would be comfortable with the screen resolution. When I need more screen real estate, I use an external display.

    Once I compared the price of buying what I needed up front in a rMBP with the cost of a base model cMBP and upgrades, the cMBP was a significantly better value for me.

    Based on your usage, the 13" Air should be a consideration. If I didn't have to replace my machine before the recent Air spec bump and price drop, I would have taken a much harder look at the 13" Air.

    All in all, I bought what I needed and I'm more than happy with a machine that will last me for several years to come.
     
  9. celly macrumors 6502

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    Calgary
    #9
    It's $400 of regular price. Just took advantage myself. :)
     
  10. Meister, Jun 8, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2014

    Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    Oct 10, 2013
    #10
    Why would you configure th retina with i7/16/1tb?

    Whats the point? :confused:

    With your stated use the i7 and 16gb ram make no sense whatsoever.

    Do you really need 1tb of storage?

    Why not just get the 2.4/8/256 or 2.6/8/512 if you really need the ssd?
     
  11. TechGod macrumors 68040

    TechGod

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    New Zealand
    #11
    Agreed. That's so over-kill for what you wanna do.
     
  12. metrowarrior79 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 2, 2009
    #12
    I appreciate the advice. The reason I need such a big hard drive is that I will be sharing this computer with my wife and we both have pretty good size iTunes libraries (quite a few movies too) and also large iPhoto libraries. Is there a way to store a portion if the iTunes libraries (particularly the movies) on an external hard drive so they don't take up space on the actual computer hard drive? If so I could probably go with a smaller hard drive.

    Also the reason I wanted to max out the processor and ram is because I'm going to be using this machine for a long time before replacing and although I don't need it all now, would possible future software updates etc. require the additional ram and processing power? I was just trying to best "future proof" myself so it wouldn't have to be replaced for several years.

    Thanks for all advice so far, it's appreciated.
     
  13. dalupus macrumors regular

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    Jul 19, 2011
    #13
    1. I can't believe apple even still selling the cMBP. It is laughable.

    2. If you really want to keep the machine for 5+ years then max out the ram.
    You probably wouldn't even notice the difference in processor and as someone else mentioned you can get a cheapie external drive if you need more room as a temporary fix.

    OWC offeres ssd upgrades should you ever really need it in the future.

    EDIT --
    Just read your last post.
    Trying to get a big enough ssd for 1 persons itunes library (if you have movies and the like in there) is a stretch. Trying to have room for both of yours is a fool's errand. Either take advantage of apples on-demand streaming or simply get an external drive for each of you. You can get an external USB powered 2TB drive for under $100 these days.
     
  14. gtanner00 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    #14
    You might want to consider a few things.

    1. Set up a network drive which you plug into your router so that it is accessible from any computer on the network. I haven't used this but I have heard that it can work seamlessly with iTunes (someone else might be able to elaborate)

    2. Sign up for iTunes match which is something like $30 a year. The service (which again I haven't used) will upload all of your music to the cloud for use on any computer signed in with your Apple account.

    3. Probably the best possibility if you would like your music to always be with you. Designate the main SSD to be almost exclusively for music and videos and buy a 128gb SD card (which always stays in the slot) or a large capacity portable hard drive to store the rest of your stuff.

    I believe that you can make your iTunes library almost any directory either internal of external however internal is far more convenient.
     
  15. taelan28 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2014
    #15
    I didnt read all of the OP words or anyones elses response but consider this:

    $1400 MBP over a 3 years will be fine, and you can get a new one... and everyone likes shiny new electronics.

    $2500 over 5 years. Its elite top of the line right now, but its going to be long in the tooth in 5 years.

    If the MBP last you 5 years, then great, but if the MBP is good enough for now and good enough for 3 years then you can upgrade at your hearts content, but a $2500 RMBP you're locked in for 5 years or more. Its a fine machine an I love my RMBP, but I know for a fact in 3-4 years Imma be coveting shiny new stuff.
     
  16. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

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    Kansas, USA
    #16
    I'd get the rMBP with a smaller drive and get a Time Capsule or some other wifi storage system or connect an external drive to your router if you can. The cMBP was last updated two years ago which is a long time in the world of computers.

    If you're going to get a cMBP, at least save yourself some money and upgrade it yourself or find a friend who can. Apple grossly overprices upgrades. RAM and internal hard drives for that machine are pretty cheap if you know where to look.

    For the rMBP, you will have to pay Apple prices as RAM is not user-upgradable, and the SSDs are hard to find.
     
  17. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    Dec 13, 2004
    #17
    buy two macbook airs and a NAS for itunes storage
     
  18. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    Oct 10, 2013
    #18
    Store your libaries somewhere else (NAS, external hd).
    For what you guys do the machine will not have to be replaced no matter how much ram and clockspeed you stick in there. "Future-proofing" is hogwash. They only macbooks that might last you longer are the 15" ones.

    By the time you need more than 4gb of ram the iris graphics and the lame dual core cpu will be obsolete.

    If you want to spend money on an upgrade Id suggest 512gb ssd.

    ----------

    ... Nonsense!
     
  19. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Boston
    #19
    Given the price of the cMBP and the age of the technology, I'd avoid that and opt for the retina MBP - just my $.02 but if you want this to last a few years, you're already setting yourself back a couple (3?) years by purchasing the non retina model.
     
  20. dalupus macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    #20
    [/COLOR]
    ... Nonsense![/QUOTE]

    I'm sorry, but if someone is buying a machine they expect to last for 5 years, not maxing out the ram is a mistake in my opinion. Especially when we are only talking about a 10% bump in cost or about $40 a year if they truly do keep it for 5 years.

    My 2011 macbook air came standard with 2GB of ram which I upgraded to 4Gb. Back then people said the same thing that 2GB was good enough but I know it would now be unusable to me if it did only have 2GB of ram.

    People telling other people that X amount of ram will be fine for their uses for the next 5 years is nonsense in my opinion. How are we to know how much memory will be needed in 5 years? I know that in my past purchases, I have always been thankful I purchased the additional ram and usually within 2 years not 5.

    Anyway I will get off my soapbox now.

    I will concede to you that while everyone always says they will keep their machine for 5+ years most do indeed replace them after a few years in which case the memory would have indeed been useless.
     
  21. Hieveryone macrumors 68030

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    Apr 11, 2014
    #21
    I'm sorry, but if someone is buying a machine they expect to last for 5 years, not maxing out the ram is a mistake in my opinion. Especially when we are only talking about a 10% bump in cost or about $40 a year if they truly do keep it for 5 years.

    My 2011 macbook air came standard with 2GB of ram which I upgraded to 4Gb. Back then people said the same thing that 2GB was good enough but I know it would now be unusable to me if it did only have 2GB of ram.

    People telling other people that X amount of ram will be fine for their uses for the next 5 years is nonsense in my opinion. How are we to know how much memory will be needed in 5 years? I know that in my past purchases, I have always been thankful I purchased the additional ram and usually within 2 years not 5.

    Anyway I will get off my soapbox now.

    I will concede to you that while everyone always says they will keep their machine for 5+ years most do indeed replace them after a few years in which case the memory would have indeed been useless.[/QUOTE]

    __________________________________________________________________________

    I think it's mainly for people who know what they are going to use it for.

    For me, science and finance are my work related life and playing Xbox One and trying to find a hot girlfriend is my fun related life.

    That's very unlikely to change anytime soon, so 8GB is probably more than enough because I'm not using any crazy intensive apps.

    Now if you do photography, video editing, and things like that than I would say get maxed out because Final Cut Pro, Adobe After Effects, and the programs like it will only use more CPU and RAM in the future as they improve functionality.
     
  22. metrowarrior79 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 2, 2009
    #22
    So I've definitely decided to go with a retina MacBook Pro. Still researching what configuration would be best. What is the difference in the i5 2.4, 2.6, and i7 2.8 GHZ processors with real world use? Would I even be able to tell the difference with typical day to day tasks?
     
  23. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #23
    With real world usage, the difference is minimal.

    I think the sweet spot config would be the 2.4/8/256.
     
  24. dextr3k macrumors 6502

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    Nov 26, 2012
    #24
    The difference is apparent when you are doing video encoding or heavy 3D modeling. For everyday, itunes, music, movies, I dont think you will notice any differences.

    I do recommend you get the most ram you can afford, as they are soldered on. But save the rest of the money for a nice external harddrive (or nas) and be done with it.
     
  25. tillsbury macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2007
    #25
    External NAS is the way to go with itunes libraries, and probably iphoto too if you have that many. I have 17,000 photos in an Aperture library which takes up 100Gb, most are 14Mp and some 35Mp. iTunes over NAS is easily possible over Wifi. You get the side benefit of being able to run both computers' Time Machine backups to the NAS too.
     

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