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familychoice says

So to you the retina wasn’t worth the extra amount? I’m stuck on that line too

It depends what you’re going to use it for. If I’d bought mine solely for image editing, then the retina would have been a must, but as mine is used for building and designing websites I prefer to work with a resolution that most of my clients website visitors will be experiencing. In a few years time if retina screens are more common then it’ll make more sense to work with this resolution.


Also the max for macbook pro seems to be 8GB 1600GHz RAM?

I’ve been told I could put 16gb in mine, and was planning to take it up to 8, but I’ve been using it since September with only 4gb and had no performance issues whatsoever so I’ll probably stick with 4 for now. The beauty of the standard MBP means I can upgrade easily at any time, and the extra 4gb will only cost me around £30.


If you have the track-pad it’s enough. It’s smooth, it “understands” a lot of gestures that help you navigate into the OS or the internet browser, go into multitasking, scroll with incredible ease, zoom, minimize, maximize pictures, files. It’s intuitive and much better than a mouse.

+1. I was going to use a mouse with the MBP but the trackpad is so good I’ve never bothered. It’s lovely to use.


Add more battery life to that + you almost never hear it & it rarely heats up to notice.

As far as I’m aware the battery life is the same for both models, and unlike a previous MBP I owned, there are no overheating issues whatsoever.

They’re both great machines, but at the end of the day it’s down to your requirements and budget. If it’s a budget decision then personally I’d buy a 15” standard MBP rather than a 13” retina as the additional screen space is more important for me than a couple of seconds speed boost.

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polymuze says

Hi Ben,

Definitely a good idea to switch to Mac, especially if you need a notebook. Here are my 2 cents:

1) 13” is the most convenient format. If you lack the display real estate 15” will not help either. You’d better take 13” and later buy any external display 24”, 27”, Apple, non-Apple—whatever you’ll need/may afford.

2) if you’re making music (and browsing web, checking emails, using Office, etc.) you don’t need a Retina version. It pleases the eye though.

3) if you’re making music 8GB is OK. 16GB will allow you load gigantic piano and string libraries easier though.

4) SSD should be maxed out.

5) check the upgrade costs at non-Apple suppliers (like OWC in the States). Very often memory and SSD upgrades at Apple are a rip off, and similar components are available from reputable third parties at much lower price. Just count in the fact that memory slots are limited and if you buy for example 8GB RAM system at Apple and then upgrade elsewhere to 16GB you have to sell (or trash) your 2×4GB modules. The same may be valid about SSD as well. Config varies from model to model, check the tech specs.

6) if you go for additional external storage, make it thunderbolt. All latest Apple notebooks have it.

7) If you take a fresh Apple MBP now you will be using one easily for good 3-4 years without being discriminated performance wise. Just a battery replacement may be needed at certain point (about 100 pounds I guess) depending on your usage pattern.

And btw, regarding CPU – read the tech specs carefully. i5 and i7 in portable (including Apple) computers have less cores than desktop versions, though the CPU name is the same.

Good luck with your purchase! ;)

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Australia says

great reply ^ @polymuse

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s4nji says
There are rumors about the new 13” Macbook Pro, check out the following page :
http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/#MacBook_Pro
http://www.macrumors.com/2013/06/20/next-generation-13-inch-macbook-pro-benchmarked-with-modest-performance-gains/

Waiting for the new Macbook Pro might be a good choice :)
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MSFX Volunteer moderator says

A couple of things…

I have MBP 2010 17” i5 2.6Ghz dual core, 8GB RAM.

I use it everyday and it runs Unity, Photoshop, various chrome tabs, Thunderbird, Visual Studio etc and it’s mostly pretty responsive… I think even the base model of the new series would be super snappy in comparison… IMO you only need the extra processor if you’re really pushing alot of computational stuff through like rendering etc…

Next: WAIT. They’re overdue an update, this is the worst time to buy one. If you can holdoff for a month or so then do – http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/

And finally find a friend who is in education and convince them they want to buy you one – you’ll get 15% off and 3 years apple care for £60 rather than £260 (worth paying for btw)

Good luck ;)

ps: don’t buy a magic mouse, they’re anything but magic.

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MSFX Volunteer moderator says

wow, just compared the retina and realised it doesn’t have a CD/DVD drive… :O

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BenSheppard says

17” ! Nice

I’d only be using it for general webdesign and making images and such

I’m fine to wait, I still need to try out a few times in a few stores

Luckly my girlfriend is in uni so I’ll run it through her

I’d only get a little portable usb CD/DVD Drive although I do use it a lot, is there a wireless CD/DVD drive? Otherwise I’d load them onto a wireless harddrive

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nCrafts says

wow, just compared the retina and realised it doesn’t have a CD/DVD drive… :O

and no Ethernet port

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BenSheppard says

Theres ethernet to thunderbolt isn’t it?

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guuthemes says

wow, just compared the retina and realised it doesn’t have a CD/DVD drive… :O

Yeah, they took out the optical drive on the rMBPs, and to be honest, I’ve been using mine for about 3/4 months now and have not missed it all, all my data is in the Cloud or transported via a USB stick.

Only work on my rMBP now. Put my iMac back in it’s box ;)

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