MacBook Selection -- give me your thoughts!

Hi all,

I purchased a new MBP last weekend when my 3 year old Mac decided to die.

I purchased the entry level 13" MacBook Pro from the latest generation (with touchbar). Here are the specs and price:

I’m considering taking this back and swapping it for a new MacBook Air 13" with the below specs (this one comes to $2200AUD):

Both computers have a very similar clock speed; however, the Apple genius assured me the MBP is leagues faster in real world use. I haven’t been able to find any decent comparisons between the two online to confirm/deny this. The MacBook Air works out $470 cheaper (I have to buy a $170 dongle to use the MBP since most of my external gear is USB 2) and has double the storage.

The MacBook Air has two downsides: no retina display and the old keyboard (the new MBP keyboard is amazing after spending a week with it).

If you were making this decision, which laptop would you choose and why?

1 Like

If I was making this decision I wouldn’t buy a mac. If I had to buy a mac I’d buy the cheapest mac. All other things being equal I’d get one without that stupid touch bar that replaced the function row.


13" screen… it’s a pain developing on such small screens.

I’d look into eBay and get the older MacBook Pros with i7 processor and 17" screens. or at least 15" size.
And if you can, one with 16GB ram.


I haven’t found the touchbar to be worth the extra price.

Thanks for the input.

1 Like

Thanks for the input.

I use an external monitor when I’m at home, so the 13" size hasn’t been too much of an issue in the past.

I’m with ArielLeslie—when I see that price tag, all I’m thinking is why? I can kinda understand if you’re a hardcore Apple or Mac fan, but that price tag is ridiculously high. You can get an equivalently spec’d laptop PC for less than half the price and then put Linux on it (no need to run Windows if you hate Windows).

Here’s a link to an actual laptop PC model that you could get with near-equivalent specs as that 13" MBP (and in some cases, even better specs!) but will cost a LOT less. Seriously, who wouldn’t want to save all that money and spend it on other stuff that you’d rather buy?


Either stick with the mbp, or get a mbp without the touch bar. Since this is the only or main laptop is go for speed.
Like you said… You have a monitor, 13" is very portable.

The one thing that no other laptop can offer is the trackpad response and accuracy. Something that Windows based laptops haven’t been able to achieve to this very day.

The Mac TouchPad is so good… I never carry a mouse.

Your won’t regret it.

I’ve had clevos alienware etc sold them all. Too heavy, TouchPad is crap. And too bulky (also my obsession for on the go gaming has died)

Also the displays on those cheap high end laptops is not easy on the eyes when coding… I much prefer retinas.

1 Like

I’ve been delighted with my MacBook Pro since I got it. I did get the 13 inch, should have got the 15 inch though. I run QuickRES so have the resolution set higher than standard which I find much better.

Why not get the 2015 15 inch retina? Great laptop, no touchbar and plenty of useful ports.


If you can wait, do so. MacBook refreshes are due later this year and the changes could be significant. Either you’ll end up with a much better computer, or you can get the same ones you’re looking at now for cheaper. That MBA won’t even be delivering until September at the earliest, and by that time we’ll know more about the refresh.

I had a Clevo* in college and it didn’t even last a year. With laptops, you get what you pay for. For all the complaints about MacBook pricing, I’ve yet to see any non-Apple laptop worth owning that’s cheaper. “Same specs” don’t cut it as the trackpad, keyboard, screen, and body are almost always garbage. My 2012 MBP is still going strong (after some upgrades), while I would have probably gone through 5 Clevos in the same time.

Also, I have to say that between the deadly spiders, venomous duck-bears, and high cost of tech, you Aussies must be made of way hardier stuff than I because I wouldn’t last a day there.

*actually, it was a Sager, but they’re the same crap


I guess the traditional “YMMV” applies here, since I’ve been using a Clevo W150HNQ since 2011 without any problems. Well ok, the internal nVidia GT540M GPU stopped working one day (I’m still able to use the onboard Intel HD 3000 though), and the battery doesn’t hold a charge over 1 hour anymore, but as you said for your MBP, my laptop is still going strong as well.

Anyway, I can certainly agree that Clevo models probably aren’t the best, but there are models by other brands that are probably a fair bit better for not too much more. The Dell XPS 13 comes to mind there:


Hi there,

Just like you, and seemingly many other people, I am also in the market for a new notebook/macbook, so here’s my 2 cents:

Intel just recently changed the names of its processor lineup for marketing reasons - so beware: The Dual-Core Core i7’s aren’t really i7 processors, only slightly faster versions of the mobile Core i5. The “real” i7’s always have 4 cores. Plus, some of the newly branded Core i5’s are actually Core-M model processors.
Be sure to allways check the exact model-number of the processor in question.

Also, I’d suggest you wait just a little bit longer, and the prices for those exact same models are gonna drop even more. The new MacBook-Pro’s and MacBooks with more RAM and Kaby-Lake Processors are gonna be released real soon (“Summer 2017”). Maybe even there will be an update of the Macbook Air lineup (or it might just fade away in silence).

The recent price drops of the new MacBook Pro’s and the MB Air is an indication that the new models will be in store very soon. And it is rumored that baseline RAM of the new MacBooks and MacBook Pro’s will be increased to 16GB + prices for entry models reduced.

Anyway - in the next couple of months we will know for sure, and you can most likely buy either a last generation processor, but ‘new’ MacBook at much better prices, OR there is something totally new and unexpected out, that you will be glad to have waited for.

I will also be shopping for a new MacBook Pro. I had my current one - the one I’m using, for roughly 6 years! (MacBook Pro 13", early 2011). With 16GB of RAM and an SSD upgrade, its still running smoothly, and it being a Mac, I can even still sell it for a respectable price …

Every couple of years, it’s the same procedure when I’m shopping for a new notebook:

My thoughts inevitably start straying away to PC-Notebooks … models such as: Dell XPS/Razer Blade/MS Surface Pro/Lenovo Ideapad 710s,
thinking to myself:

“Hmm … for the same price I could get a ___, with a ___ and even a ___!
Why don’t I get one of those?”

“Some other brands build stylish notebooks, too nowadays. And they offer better technical stats - for the same price”```

“Windows 10 actually isn’t so bad. Compared to earlier Windows versions”

That’s when I keep reminding myself of the reasons why I’m gonna stick to a Mac:

  • MacBooks have the BEST, most durable build quality you can buy for money
  • They have the BEST design. Competitions models still look like last years MacBooks
  • Windows 10 is pretty decent compared to the past. But still - Windows is not macOS and its not Linux either.
  • The Internet was built on Unix, and still runs on Linux. Much of the Developer World is using Linux. macOS is the rich world of Linux, but also a consumer OS - with all the benefits
  • On macOS you can develop for any Plattform. Its the only OS where you can do this
  • The new MacBooks have the best Screen you can find on a Notebook! Its the brightest, the sharpest (Retina-Screen) and the one with the best color-gamut
  • The new MacBook keyboards are incredible. Almost feel like mechanical switches
  • Accounting for all the details - If it’s well equipped, well designed - a comparable Windows notebook will sometimes not be so much cheaper.
  • Since Apple runs its OS on proprietary Hardware, Software and Hardware are optimized for best possible performance. One reason why an Core i5 MacBook might sometimes be faster than a Core i7 Windows notebook (On everyday tasks, not processor intensive stuff)

Alright, so I’ve written a lot more here than I had in mind. But I hope that for the sake of you, me, and all other near-future MacBook buyers: May we get the best-made MacBook out there, to bring us many years of joy without any technical worries …


Totally agree with what you wrote!

You know what i absolutely dislike about my Macbook Pro 13"(mid 2010)? It is that it still runs perfectly fine (with 16GB ram and SSD upgrade) after 6-7years! I can even do photo/video editing via Lightroom and FCPX on it! :grin: on the other hand, my sisters have changed up to 3 windows laptops within those few years…

That being said, i’m certainly looking forward to decommissioning it and upgrading to the new upcoming 2017 models

1 Like

Exactly! Some of the best things about the MacBooks are hard to quantify, such as build quality, screen, trackpad.

I myself have owned PC Notebooks and MacBooks, but so far always I’ve been more happy with the MacBooks, and I’ve owned + used them for a much longer time on average.

Of course there’s lots of things that piss me off, too about Apple. I’m not too fond of the Touchbar, and the Prices for the new 15" models are over the top I think.
Still - I love the Operating System, they’re a joy to work with, and generally well designed - visually & UX wise.


I’m coming up on the end of the year warranty, what do you all say/think/suggest about getting AppleCare?

I had a very pleasant experience this week concerning a fan noise, afaik it was an adjustment; they replaced my footpads as part of general servicing. The report said it would of been $400 for service/labor/transport if it weren’t for the warranty. That’s steep, and I’m wondering what others experienced over their 3-6 years.

Typically, I service devices myself and like to clean under the keys/fans, or take things apart and learn about them. With a Mac there’s not much of that, with the level of “hands off our hardware” they maintain. So, for those that DIY were you better off with their service?

AppleCare - you hate it when the computer didn’t break and you think it was a waste of money.
But if the computer breaks, you get treated like first class and you’re glad you have it!


I personally would never buy an Apple product again without AppleCare.

1 Like