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Old 11-02-2012, 02:58 PM   #1
dmw16
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Default 15" Retina MBP vs Upgraded Regular 15" MBP

I am considering selling my 27" iMac and going to a laptop just to have more flexibility as far as traveling with my machine.

I use my computer for surfing the web, listening to music, watching movies, and also some light photo editing in Aperture.

I'm stuck between either a base retina MBP (w/ 16GB RAM upgrade) or a base 15" MBP (w/ upgraded display). I reason that if I buy the retina version it doesn't make sense not to max the RAM since I'm stuck with whatever I buy it with. The price difference is $390.

I'm a bit of a screen resolution junkie so I'm leaning towards the retina MBP, but was just curious what others might think. Or maybe I don't really need the 16GB of RAM...
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Old 11-02-2012, 03:33 PM   #2
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rMBP.

Ok, the rMBP with 16GB RAM is $500 more than the MBP. Except that it has 16GB RAM and a 256GB SSD.

16GB RAM is $75
256GB SSD is $200 (Samsung 830)

So the price difference between them is closer to $250 now, and at that point, I would say that the Retina display and extra tbolt connector more than make up that difference.
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:44 PM   #3
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rMBP.

Ok, the rMBP with 16GB RAM is $500 more than the MBP. Except that it has 16GB RAM and a 256GB SSD.

16GB RAM is $75
256GB SSD is $200 (Samsung 830)

So the price difference between them is closer to $250 now, and at that point, I would say that the Retina display and extra tbolt connector more than make up that difference.
Good point.

I don't really count the ssd and extra ram because the ssd isn't something I need and the ram I could add for free (already own some) to the regular MacBook. But even at $400 it's probably worth the extra.
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Old 11-02-2012, 06:00 PM   #4
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Good point.

I don't really count the ssd and extra ram because the ssd isn't something I need and the ram I could add for free (already own some) to the regular MacBook. But even at $400 it's probably worth the extra.
No, the SSD is something that you need.
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Old 11-02-2012, 07:22 PM   #5
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No, the SSD is something that you need.
Now you've convinced me
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Old 11-02-2012, 07:32 PM   #6
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Get the vanilla 15'' MBP and use your own SSD and RAM. You can also remove the optical drive, get the adapter, and add a second hard drive. Will work out cheaper in the end. Keep in mind the retina Macbooks are difficult to repair. I don't recommend them to anyone for that reason.
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Old 11-02-2012, 08:19 PM   #7
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Get the vanilla 15'' MBP and use your own SSD and RAM. You can also remove the optical drive, get the adapter, and add a second hard drive. Will work out cheaper in the end. Keep in mind the retina Macbooks are difficult to repair. I don't recommend them to anyone for that reason.
I absolutely agree with all of your points. However, please allow me to rebut.

RETINA DISPLAY

That is all
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Old 11-02-2012, 10:02 PM   #8
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Get the retina. It is hands down the best notebook Apple has ever made.
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:34 PM   #9
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Is hard drive space a concern? I've always felt it's hard to justify paying so much for a retina MBP and only getting 256GB of space, regardless of the fact that it's an SSD.

and the cost to bump up to 512GB is a little crazy.
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Old 11-03-2012, 01:00 PM   #10
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Is hard drive space a concern? I've always felt it's hard to justify paying so much for a retina MBP and only getting 256GB of space, regardless of the fact that it's an SSD.

and the cost to bump up to 512GB is a little crazy.
Hard drive space is a little bit of a concern. I shoot in raw and save most everything so 256gb won't last long. Of course I could keep my aperture library on an external thunderbolt drive.

I am torn. But the retina resolution compelling.
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Old 11-03-2012, 01:36 PM   #11
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It's recommended that you keep an external drive with the rMBP. 256GB will be gone in a flash.

I don't take photos often (being that it's a hobby), but my rMBP is already down to 100GB free.
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Old 11-03-2012, 03:00 PM   #12
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Get the vanilla 15'' MBP and use your own SSD and RAM. You can also remove the optical drive, get the adapter, and add a second hard drive.
This what I did. Since the MBP was going to be my only machine and I needed more storage. External drives just to cover day to day needs seems like a major downside to me. Also, since the MBP uses standard 2.5" drives, as improvements come in capacity and speed it will be easy to upgrade. With rMBP you will always have very limited options in that regard.

Another reason for me was the fact that the majority of the time I will be using an external display as my main monitor.

I understand that everyone's needs are different but it seems the rMBP is more a status symbol than a practical computer.

-KeithP
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Old 11-03-2012, 05:40 PM   #13
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This what I did. Since the MBP was going to be my only machine and I needed more storage. External drives just to cover day to day needs seems like a major downside to me. Also, since the MBP uses standard 2.5" drives, as improvements come in capacity and speed it will be easy to upgrade. With rMBP you will always have very limited options in that regard.

Another reason for me was the fact that the majority of the time I will be using an external display as my main monitor.

I understand that everyone's needs are different but it seems the rMBP is more a status symbol than a practical computer.

-KeithP
It's not a status symbol, it's just a very badass and expensive laptop. They could have given it more SSD space but again it's Apple, they don't give much of anything.
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Old 11-03-2012, 05:59 PM   #14
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The hard drive space is the big hang up for me. An external is fine but it makes me nervous keeping files I'd hate to leave on an external drive. I do backups on a regular basis but still.

So really it becomes if I want to spend the money or if I can live with the hires vanilla MBP vs if I want to spend extra for better resolution.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:08 PM   #15
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@dmw16 - I really recommend getting the 2.6/512 SSD/ 16GB RAM version. Yes, its alot of money, but you wont be disappointed.
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Old 11-04-2012, 05:56 AM   #16
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Once you go retina, you never go back.

Make the jump, you won't regret it, at all, ever.

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@dmw16 - I really recommend getting the 2.6/512 SSD/ 16GB RAM version. Yes, its alot of money, but you wont be disappointed.
If money is an issue, choose the base model, upgrade to a 2.6GHz and 16GB option, keeping the 256GB SSD.
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Old 11-04-2012, 05:58 AM   #17
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:26 AM   #18
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Once you go retina, you never go back.

Make the jump, you won't regret it, at all, ever.



If money is an issue, choose the base model, upgrade to a 2.6GHz and 16GB option, keeping the 256GB SSD.
The SSD is upgradeable down the road, you can get a system pull off ebay or get it new from OWC. It isn't soldered in place, and they don't necessarily approve of the upgrade, but if it isn't bolted down, it is fair game.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:11 AM   #19
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The hard drive space is the big hang up for me. An external is fine but it makes me nervous keeping files I'd hate to leave on an external drive. I do backups on a regular basis but still.

So really it becomes if I want to spend the money or if I can live with the hires vanilla MBP vs if I want to spend extra for better resolution.
I don't see why you'd be more nervous leaving your files on an external drive. If you don't need access to those files all the time, you can leave the external drive at home.

If you don't want to plug things in, and you have an Airport Extreme, then you can make a network drive that automagically shows up whenever you get home.
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Old 11-04-2012, 12:14 PM   #20
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rMBP. Believe me, it is an excellent piece of machinery. I would recommend it to anyone.
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