Yet another "which machine?" advice seeking thread

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Eldiablojoe, Aug 17, 2015.

  1. Eldiablojoe macrumors 6502a

    Eldiablojoe

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Location:
    West Koast
    #1
    You guys have all been great giving advice, and I have just been wavering for months now between jumping on a 15-inch rMBP now or waiting to see what comes down the skyline road. I'm not sure when the Skylake chips suitable for 13-inch rMBP are rumored/expected.

    Well, I stuck my head back into an Apple store yesterday, and I think I'm actually preferring a 13-inch screen for my use. It was very recently upgraded, and I usually just use the machine at home in front of the TV.

    I use Word for work reports a few times per month, but my primary interest is email and the fastest web surfing known to mankind. The only other "resource intensive" work I do is sometimes bulk transferring and backing up of USB thumb drives and work transferring Photos when uploading from my iPhone's camera. I'm not a Gamer and I don't do very much Netflix video streaming. I do surf Youtube sometimes though.

    So, looking more closely at the 13-inch rMBP, I see multiple configurations available. I would probably lean toward maxing out the RAM at 16GB for an extra $200, since I think that will produce the most bang-for-the-buck results, but what do you guys think of the options of bumping the processor from the 2.9GHz i5 to the 3.1GHz i7 for $200 and the storage from 512GB to 1TB (for another $500!)?

    If it matters any, I've been using this same old Late-2009 White Unibody MacBook, however I upgraded the RAM and swapped out the HDD for a SSD last year.

    Thanks for taking a few moments to share your advice.
     
  2. keysofanxiety macrumors 604

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #2
    Processor bump wouldn't make much of a difference. The Flash chips on the MBPs work in parallel -- so the higher the storage, the quicker the read/write speeds. For somebody who frequently faps themselves crosseyed over the ridiculous read/write speeds on the rMBPs, that's what I'd heartily recommend. More storage also means you've got the element of system longevity and won't have to worry about storage down the line. Plus you'll be able to comfortably install Bootcamp (if you want to start doing gaming).

    At any rate I'd say 512GB minimum for storage. 16GB RAM is a definite, again for longevity. Processor bump really won't make a difference, you'll be hard-pressed to max out the CPU on those models with what you'd be using it for anyway.

    But hey, you might as well max out if you can afford to!
     
  3. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #3
    My best guess is early next year.

    Reading through your normal usage patterns, you don't need any upgrades. Buy the rMBP with the storage you need and you'll be fine. I went with the 512GB model because I wanted to run Windows 10 in a 100GB Boot Camp partition.

    Alternatively, a retina MacBook would also do everything you wanted. Might be worth looking into.
     
  4. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #4
    With your use case you need no upgrades at all, just as much storage space as you want 8Gb of RAM is more than enough (you'll actually be using about 4GB with uses you have quoted). The Processor upgrade would only be worth it in specific use cases which you do not even come close to performing. Pretty much buy any one you want it will make no difference at all for what you use it for.
     
  5. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #5
    Why bother upgrading the thing from the base model at all then? You definitely don't need the power and wouldn't notice a monicker of difference between the two.

    Apart from a lighter wallet and the warm fuzzy feeling you got the fastest machine.
     
  6. Eldiablojoe, Aug 17, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2015

    Eldiablojoe thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Eldiablojoe

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Location:
    West Koast
    #6
    I'm interested in a new machine primarily because of the age of this one. The battery gets very hot, the trackpad self-clicks (not physically, but I'll be typing away on something and all of a sudden the text jumps to wherever the cursor is on the document as if I had clicked somewhere else in the document), and I think with the new OS X coming soon, I may need to upgrade for best results. I started this machine off with Snow Leopard.

    T5Brick, a retina MacBook starts at the same $1,299 base as the 13-inch rMBP, with only a 1.1 GHz processor, and half the upgradeability (Maxes out at 8GB RAM and 512GB storage). It also has lower battery and power claims, and a lesser graphics board. Except for the "future proofing" offered by the USB-C (I like having the MagSafe, Mrs. ElDiabloJoe trips on my cord regularly, and I have several USB-A peripherals and external HDDs), I can't see the advantage of paying the same thing for half the machine.
     
  7. Ulenspiegel macrumors 68020

    Ulenspiegel

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2014
    Location:
    Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
    #7
    You have a point. The rMB is not worth its price. What concerns the 13" rMBP, I would not upgrade it at all taking into account your pattern of use.
     
  8. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #8
    That's a good point on the price, but performance wise, it would do everything you want.

    That being said, I compared the rMB and the 13" rMBP and went with the latter. Like I said, go with the model that meets your storage needs and you're set. You don't need the CPU or RAM upgrades, they'd be a waste of money in your case.
     
  9. newellj macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    Boston, MA, US
    #9
    What they wrote. Of all the upgrade questions, the one you might focus on would be storage, but even that can be relatively easily addressed with external drives, subject to some obvious trade-offs.
     
  10. JHUFrank macrumors 6502a

    JHUFrank

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2010
    #10
    Ah man, it's not a real advice thread without a Poll!
     
  11. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2011
    Location:
    Austin, USA
    #11
    You could live with the rMB, but for that price, I would just get the 13 inch rMBP.
     
  12. Vikinguy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    #12
    How many people on this forum actually "need" 16gb of RAM? Like video editing or something? I just got a rmbp the other day and can't believe it has 8 gb of RAM!
     
  13. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #13
    It depends on what you do.

    My work issued laptop is a 17" behemoth with a quad core i7, Quadro graphics card and 16GB of RAM. I find myself hitting that amount of RAM frequently and sometimes lack a bit of oomph.
     
  14. newellj macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    Boston, MA, US
    #14
    It does depend on what you do. In this case, the OP would have seen no speed increase or any other benefit from going up to 16GB of RAM, though.
     

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