Is MacBook Pro worth buying?

Ryou-kun

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Hello, guys, I am curious if it is worth buying MacBook Pro?
I don't know if Retina display is worth it.

I'll be using the laptop primarily for animation/music producing/graphic design.
I already have a gaming PC, so I thought it'll be cool to mix thing up. You know have Window Desktop and OS X laptop.

However, I don't know if it is worth shelling out thousand of dollars for it.
Also is there any big difference between 13" model and 15" model?
 

BlueLineSwinger

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It depends. Do you believe that a Mac would somehow be a better fit for the job you described than Windows? Is the Mac software somehow better? Is this for work, where they happen to also use Macs and having the same personal tools would be beneficial?

And why a laptop over a desktop unit? Seems like a desktop would have some useful benefits, such as expandability, better GPUs, etc. Do you need the portability?

If you're serious about doing graphics/animation and need a Mac laptop, a 15" retina would seem to be the way to go. It won't be cheap, though. If this is just a hobby, however, maybe a better choice would be to see what apps are available for Windows that you can use on your existing PC, and maybe pick up some kind of tablet if you'd like something portable. If you still really want a Mac, maybe consider a Mini.

If there's an Apple store near you go check out the systems there. Maybe someone there will even have useful info on the types of apps used for your desired use.
 

JayJapanB

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Also, despite popular belief, there is nothing wrong with buying something because you like the design(provided it works for your needs.)
That I see as one of Apple's selling points.
 

Phrik

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I've been asked by clients this quite a lot of times, and so far 1 out of 20 do go for mac, and even after an hour talking them out of it

Their reasons have been only one of these, to which I won't try to convince them either way anymore:
1) I don't know how to use Windows, or any other OS, as I've only used Macs since
2) I use a specific software that is 100% Mac specific only
3) educational purpose to learn multi tech in IT (no complaints on this comment myself, got one myself so I can support them)
4) I want a change in pace in my computing experience
5) I want to waste money as I'm rich, and I want you to set me up with a Apple ecosystem at home since I will be paying you anyway (I do since they insist, and have the cash to waste)
 

Megalith

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Do it and get it out of your system. I had the same craving when the Retina MacBook came out, mostly because I was curious about exploring a brand new OS.

It now sits in the closet because the OS is horrible/pointless compared to Windows.
 

Ruoh

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It now sits in the closet because the OS is horrible/pointless compared to Windows.

Purely opinion.

If you want something that's stable, and don't want to "mess around" installing drivers and dealing with numerous other Windows issues, go for it. I think as we get older, the attraction of a product that "just works" grows.
 

rflcptr

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OP: assuming you've already determined the applications you'll require, I recommend at least trying it, since you're already curious whether it will help you. you have a 14 day window in which to return the machine for a full refund, if it isn't the one for you.
 

Ryou-kun

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The softwares will work both on OS X and Windows.
Reason why I want a laptop is that I can work on the go. Like going to visit my grandma that live in California while I live in Texas. Can't really carry my heavy desktop to there.

I know it pretty much sounded like it is pointless to get MacBook Pro based on what I'll be using it for considering the fact that the softwares works both on Windows and OS X, but I do like their design and makes it attractive. I don't know if there is a windows laptop that has a nice design, portable, powerful CPU, high res and decent battery life.

Another reason I want MacBook Pro is because I want a variety OS machine rather sticking to one OS.

My friend who is also a music producer who used to own a windows PC then switch to MacBook Pro and he love it ever since then.

As for animation and graphic design, it isn't my priority to work on just the music producing. I'll be using Ableton Live 9 software.
 

Ruoh

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Another reason I want MacBook Pro is because I want a variety OS machine rather sticking to one OS.

One thing to keep in mind is that it's easy to put Windows on a Macbook. Putting OSX on a "pc" laptop? Not so much. Nor is it strictly legal at this point.
 

Ryou-kun

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One thing to add is that I might use a "laptop" for software engineer major. I don't have a specific programs on both PC and windows.
 

Phrik

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The softwares will work both on OS X and Windows.
Reason why I want a laptop is that I can work on the go. Like going to visit my grandma that live in California while I live in Texas. Can't really carry my heavy desktop to there.

I know it pretty much sounded like it is pointless to get MacBook Pro based on what I'll be using it for considering the fact that the softwares works both on Windows and OS X, but I do like their design and makes it attractive. I don't know if there is a windows laptop that has a nice design, portable, powerful CPU, high res and decent battery life.

Another reason I want MacBook Pro is because I want a variety OS machine rather sticking to one OS.

My friend who is also a music producer who used to own a windows PC then switch to MacBook Pro and he love it ever since then.

As for animation and graphic design, it isn't my priority to work on just the music producing. I'll be using Ableton Live 9 software.

Mind you there is an HP laptop that almost looks like the macbook pro. And there are certainly powerful light laptops out there at the same price points.

True, I find it easier to run windows on a mac, and troublesome to run osx on a PC.

All in all, from what I'm reading there you just have the urge to have a macbook. So, go for it, that's your opinion and reason, and it's a subjective matter.
 

Cheetoz

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It now sits in the closet because the OS is horrible/pointless compared to Windows.

Windows is much worse.

has a unix-like terminal? Nope
has sed? Nope
has grep? Nope
has cron jobs? Nope
has bash scripts? Nope

Pretty pointless. But then again I have been in the OSX/Linux world for the past decade.
 

Weenis

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Windows is much worse.

has a unix-like terminal? Nope
has sed? Nope
has grep? Nope
has cron jobs? Nope
has bash scripts? Nope

Pretty pointless. But then again I have been in the OSX/Linux world for the past decade.

Your opinion is not based in any fact at all.

Unix terminal? Why does it matter that it's 'unix-like' it's not a unix terminal.

Everything else you listed has a windows counterpart, your ignorance does not mean they don't exist.

Your opinion is pretty pointless.

OP; I bought a macbook pro retina 15" as I was in a similar situation as yourself.

Gaming desktop, but I've used everything under the sun except osx. I'd previously had a macbook pro for a bit but returned it due to the size (13) and low resolution screen. I've had my MBPr 15 for about a week now. I really like it so far... the main reasons I got it:

  • To learn OSx; you never know when this might come up important later on.. Jobs change etc.
  • A platform for development of iOS apps if I decide to move forward in this area
  • Battery life; plain and simple.. Almost nothing stands up, partly because of the OS.
  • Battery adapter, it seems stupid but.. Every laptop outside of business grade Dells/HPs has TOTALLY taken a crap on me and failed. I'm careful with my stuff too, the magsafe adapter is brilliant.
  • I like the way it stays cool during just normal computing/surfing/writing/streaming video/audio etc.. That's huge to me.
  • Apple has pretty dang good customer support. HP/Samsung support is awful. Dell is middle of the road, but you end up wasting hours dealing with them. At the end of the day it's nice to be able to speak with someone locally or in English, get results, and not waste a few hours when you need something.

    I got an iPhone replaced under warranty once, it was really easy. Primarily they were conscientious of my time.. To some they'd rather spend a little less and waste more time dealing with CS when issues come up.... my time is worth more to me than that.
  • Keyboard/touchpad gestures.. I know PCs have mimicked these recently, but I like them a lot.
  • I also just flat out like how it looks.
 

Ryou-kun

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Your opinion is not based in any fact at all.

Unix terminal? Why does it matter that it's 'unix-like' it's not a unix terminal.

Everything else you listed has a windows counterpart, your ignorance does not mean they don't exist.

Your opinion is pretty pointless.

OP; I bought a macbook pro retina 15" as I was in a similar situation as yourself.

Gaming desktop, but I've used everything under the sun except osx. I'd previously had a macbook pro for a bit but returned it due to the size (13) and low resolution screen. I've had my MBPr 15 for about a week now. I really like it so far... the main reasons I got it:

  • To learn OSx; you never know when this might come up important later on.. Jobs change etc.
  • A platform for development of iOS apps if I decide to move forward in this area
  • Battery life; plain and simple.. Almost nothing stands up, partly because of the OS.
  • Battery adapter, it seems stupid but.. Every laptop outside of business grade Dells/HPs has TOTALLY taken a crap on me and failed. I'm careful with my stuff too, the magsafe adapter is brilliant.
  • I like the way it stays cool during just normal computing/surfing/writing/streaming video/audio etc.. That's huge to me.
  • Apple has pretty dang good customer support. HP/Samsung support is awful. Dell is middle of the road, but you end up wasting hours dealing with them. At the end of the day it's nice to be able to speak with someone locally or in English, get results, and not waste a few hours when you need something.

    I got an iPhone replaced under warranty once, it was really easy. Primarily they were conscientious of my time.. To some they'd rather spend a little less and waste more time dealing with CS when issues come up.... my time is worth more to me than that.
  • Keyboard/touchpad gestures.. I know PCs have mimicked these recently, but I like them a lot.
  • I also just flat out like how it looks.

Do you know how I can get Macbook Pro much cheaper beside going on eBay or Craiglist?
Also you can upgrade the RAM and storage in MBP, right?

Do also know when there'll be a next MBP because I am assuming it might be cheaper.
 

Tyler-Durden

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I'm in the PC desktop + MBP laptop camp. I don't think you can buy a better built laptop than an MBP. If you buy one, get the extended warranty. It's well worth the additional expense.

@Ryou-kun: You can self-upgrade the RAM and hard drive in older MBPs, but not the Retina models.
 

jmilcher

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One thing to keep in mind is that it's easy to put Windows on a Macbook. Putting OSX on a "pc" laptop? Not so much. Nor is it strictly legal at this point.

It's against Apple's TOS, but as far as legal/illegal that is a Grey area.

I have all the same hardware literally as a high end Macbook Pro... but I paid $350 for the compatible laptop and another $200-300 upgrading to a SSD and a i7 quad core, and 16GB of ram.

Three hours later I had a fully functional "Macbook Pro" with top of the line specs, and a removable battery, and ram that can easily be replaced.

If you bought a comparable MacBook you'd have spend nearly 5 times as much.

Just a thought.

And then I run bootcamp and use windows 7 when needed.
 

Ryou-kun

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Right now, I guess it isn't worth buying MBP for right now. I am still in a Community College which it isn't required to bring a laptop to school to use. Tablet is okay. I am going to wait till I am in University then I might buy MBP. Well, I do know sooner or later I am going to get MBP because it felt like it is taunting me to buy it.
 

shansoft

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Do it and get it out of your system. I had the same craving when the Retina MacBook came out, mostly because I was curious about exploring a brand new OS.

It now sits in the closet because the OS is horrible/pointless compared to Windows.

The OS is not that bad compare to Windows in general. There are quite a bit of flaws in Mac OS, but everything starting to get sort out since Snow Leopard. The multi-screen support is now far superior on Maverick compare to Windows.

Under IT/Engineering, Mac in anyway is far superior than Windows. As it does a lot of things natively and much better support than windows.

Overall, if you are working around with Development / Design, you are better off with a Mac. For gaming related, get Windows...
 

mope54

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Do it and get it out of your system. I had the same craving when the Retina MacBook came out, mostly because I was curious about exploring a brand new OS.

It now sits in the closet because the OS is horrible/pointless compared to Windows.
If a retina macbook is really sitting in your closet then you should take it out and recoup about 80% of your cost on the used market. In fact, you could sell it to the OP.


Cheetoz said "unix-like" I was replying directly to him.
Your response to Cheetoz that "it's not a unix terminal" is factually incorrect because OS X uses bash as its default terminal, which is a UNIX terminal.

Perhaps he said unix-like because people often find the distinction between bsd, freebsd, and linux (among other derivatives) confusing. freebsd (for legal reasons) and linux are "unix-like" whereas BSD *is* UNIX.

OS X is BSD and OS X is a licensed and certified as a fully fledged UNIX OS.

You didn't clear any of that up presumably because you don't (didn't) know the facts.
 

UnknownSouljer

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Hello, guys, I am curious if it is worth buying MacBook Pro?
I don't know if Retina display is worth it.

I'll be using the laptop primarily for animation/music producing/graphic design.
I already have a gaming PC, so I thought it'll be cool to mix thing up. You know have Window Desktop and OS X laptop.

However, I don't know if it is worth shelling out thousand of dollars for it.
Also is there any big difference between 13" model and 15" model?

These threads are getting a bit tiresome.
NO ONE CAN ANSWER IF SOMETHING IS WORTH IT FOR YOU.
Obviously these things are selling. A lot of people think they are worth the price. That valuation has to be made by you and you alone. If we could convince you that something is or isn't worth buying, I would sell you each of my possessions for some ridiculous sum of money.

I don't purchase machines for 'cool' factor. I purchase machines to do work on. Will this help you do better work? Will this help you do work more efficiently? Will this help you do work you couldn't do before? Those are significantly better questions to ask yourself.

The "big differences" between the 13" and 15" Retina models are primarily based around having a discreet GPU vs Iris graphics. If you need a discreet GPU, then the 15" is your only option.



The softwares will work both on OS X and Windows.
Reason why I want a laptop is that I can work on the go. Like going to visit my grandma that live in California while I live in Texas. Can't really carry my heavy desktop to there.

I know it pretty much sounded like it is pointless to get MacBook Pro based on what I'll be using it for considering the fact that the softwares works both on Windows and OS X, but I do like their design and makes it attractive. I don't know if there is a windows laptop that has a nice design, portable, powerful CPU, high res and decent battery life.

Another reason I want MacBook Pro is because I want a variety OS machine rather sticking to one OS.

My friend who is also a music producer who used to own a windows PC then switch to MacBook Pro and he love it ever since then.

As for animation and graphic design, it isn't my priority to work on just the music producing. I'll be using Ableton Live 9 software.

You can buy any laptop and use it on the go. That in and of itself isn't a reason to use another OS.

Software considerations are something to think about. You do realize you're going to have to get an entirely different software library for a majority of the rest of your stuff right? Certain programs that you'll want to use on a day to day basis don't exist on OSX, but at the same time there are programs that don't exist on Windows either. Weigh it out, does this help or hinder you?

I wouldn't ever jump ship on one OS for a reason as arbitrary as "variety". This "variety" will only make your life more difficult. It's far easier to do all of you work in either one OS or the other. Cross platform will always cause unforeseen headaches. Forget trying to use external hard-drives with both machines. Unless you want to be stuck on Fat32 forever, which will limit how large of an HD you can use. NTFS and HFS are very different. There is software to do read/write on both, but even those manufactures tell you to never use them with critical data. They're a hack at best. This will not make your workflow easier in any sense of the word.



One thing to add is that I might use a "laptop" for software engineer major. I don't have a specific programs on both PC and windows.

Depends on what you prefer. Some people swear by Notepad++, that isn't available on OSX. If you want to do development for iOS, that is limited to OSX. So depending on what kind of software development you do a specific system will be better on one platform vs another. If I was going to be doing all web development for Microsoft Platforms, Windows would be a no brainer. If you're doing stuff like PHP/Java then either works fine. If you're trying to program for OSX/iOS then there is a lean towards OSX. These are just examples of course. You'll have to make your own judgement call for your usage case. But as a side note, a lot of 'Googlers' do all their programming in OSX.


Do you know how I can get Macbook Pro much cheaper beside going on eBay or Craiglist?
Also you can upgrade the RAM and storage in MBP, right?

Do also know when there'll be a next MBP because I am assuming it might be cheaper.

There is no way to buy a "cheap" Apple machine. Accept this going in. You'll never find a great discount. However this means that when it's time to sell, you can get more of your money back out of the machine. Mac's hold their value significantly better than any competing Windows based product. eBay/CL and Apple's own refurbished are the only places to get any sort of discount. I personally recommend refurbished. No difference in what you get, but the price is sliced significantly if it's an older model, or it's a model that has existed on the market for 8-10 months.

You cannot upgrade the Ram in the MBPr. In the original "fat body" MBP's with disc drives you can. The HD's are 'technically' replaceable, but they ARE NOT standard 2.5" drives, they are essentially flash memory on sticks. A very special format. If you haven't seen them, they look like this: http://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/SSDAP12R480/
So yes, you can upgrade them later, but you don't really save any money by doing so at this time. If you need a larger HDD or Ram, it's essentially just a better idea to get it when your purchase it.

The next MBP will be the exact same price as the current one is. If you're looking for a cheaper newer Mac, that will never happen. There is a new model every year, the price is generally the same. Apple is actually extremely predictable in this regard. Waiting for a new model is based around new features and things like that, that's the reason to wait for a new model. Not the price.
 

Ryou-kun

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These threads are getting a bit tiresome.
NO ONE CAN ANSWER IF SOMETHING IS WORTH IT FOR YOU.
Obviously these things are selling. A lot of people think they are worth the price. That valuation has to be made by you and you alone. If we could convince you that something is or isn't worth buying, I would sell you each of my possessions for some ridiculous sum of money.

I don't purchase machines for 'cool' factor. I purchase machines to do work on. Will this help you do better work? Will this help you do work more efficiently? Will this help you do work you couldn't do before? Those are significantly better questions to ask yourself.

That is true but can I at least get an opinion from someone, so I can form my own conclusion?
 

UnknownSouljer

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That is true but can I at least get an opinion from someone, so I can form my own conclusion?

The problem with this question in general is that people are going to say one of two things (generally, obviously not word for word):
"It's the greatest thing ever, I love my Mac"
"OSX/Mac's are terrible. and/or some variation of they are overpriced/don't bother"

So in the end are you going to make a decision because x number of people entered a thread and voted one way or the other? More than likely not.

Instead then, it's significantly better to ask questions that pertain to you and your usage and ask those questions about making the switch.

As an example, if I was buying a car, I wouldn't bother asking whether or not a Honda S2000 is "worth it" or not. It would make more sense if I asked if the car can comfortably move my family of four and still be sporty. Of course that example is a bit silly as we're all aware that the S2000 is a two seater, but that is asking a question about usage case rather than asking for an opinion on valuation. Because an opinion shouldn't shape yours, but giving a clear answer about a specific usage case can.

It would be better if you said something like:
I am a architect and I use autocad to create all of my drawings. Will OSX make sense for me at all in terms of workflow? (No! autocad isn't on OSX! If you need that stick with Windows)
Or, I program Ruby on Rails, does anyone use Ruby on Rails on an rMBP? If so, what programs do you use, and do you find you have any problems doing that?

These types questions will get you a lot closer to a real answer that is tangible and makes sense rather than simply leaning on subjective questions and answers.
 

Phrik

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Ryou-kun, as I said with your written reasons, you want to get one for the hype, so go for it. You won't be able to make a decision based on other's opinions when it comes to a "is it worth it" question. You'll just make matter worst in your list of pros and cons.

If you would buy it now and in the future something does go wrong, you'll just end up saying "but that guy in the forum said", so you're just afraid to take your own responsibility of the fault that you could or would make then.

With the reasons you have put down now, NO, it's not worth it. I can get better and still do many things at the same price points.
 

Ryou-kun

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Ryou-kun, as I said with your written reasons, you want to get one for the hype, so go for it. You won't be able to make a decision based on other's opinions when it comes to a "is it worth it" question. You'll just make matter worst in your list of pros and cons.

If you would buy it now and in the future something does go wrong, you'll just end up saying "but that guy in the forum said", so you're just afraid to take your own responsibility of the fault that you could or would make then.

With the reasons you have put down now, NO, it's not worth it. I can get better and still do many things at the same price points.

Oh, no, I don't blame you guys if I make a mistake. It'll be mostly my fault for listening to you guys, and you guys are just helping me... Sort of...

But hey, I need some thinking and infos from you guys and see everyone's opinion.
Of course, I won't be expecting much like some of you guys said. It is either "yes it is worth it" or "not it isn't worth it".

Again, I am still thinking. It isn't like I am going to buy it now. I still need more infos on my decision. Yes, it is based on my decision. :p
 

Deinos

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Everyone has covered the basics pretty well, so I would just offer advice in regards to the actual purchase. I know you mentioned being a student and not in a large hurry. If you end up putting your decision off until summer, they typically offer an additional gift card on top of the student discounts that they give throughout the year. You can always sell the giftcard or use it towards apps. Aside from the student discount or refurb, that is the only additional savings you are going to see (unless you work for Apple or an Apple subsidiary, get a corporate deal, etc.).

Just a thought if you are looking to save some money. Otherwise, at that point, there could be a Broadwell refresh in October, as Apple has pretty much been refreshing the MBPr close to once a year.
 

ChaosNightWolf

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I'm in the same situation as you. I have a gaming PC for home and I just bought my MBP 2 days ago. The retina display is amazing after you get used to it and compare it to other displays. So far I'm learning OSX, but it's been great. Nothing completely amazing but we'll see.
 

Ryou-kun

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By the way, there are some people selling MBPr on this forum, right?
How am I suppose to know they are trustworthy to buy it from?
Compare to overclock.net, they have a reputation feature to allow buyer know that they are trustworthy.
 

Terpfen

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By the way, there are some people selling MBPr on this forum, right?
How am I suppose to know they are trustworthy to buy it from?
Compare to overclock.net, they have a reputation feature to allow buyer know that they are trustworthy.

The buy/sell forum here uses Heatware to track reputation.
 

mikey71497

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I have been using Windows since my IT career started back in 1999. Froward to today. Network Engineer mostly working on routers/switches and Optical DWDM transport systems. Most of my work is command-line terminal. Use putty for windows, filezilla word,excel and outlook.

When I first started my job 7 months ago I had a choice of machine...Lenovo X230....T420...W530. MB Pro 15"w/retina or MB Air 13". I opted for the W530 because I was a Windows person up until now and also the 15.6" screen is helpful for my eyes. Long story short, I just submitted a helpdesk ticket to swap my laptop to a 15" MB Pro w/retina. My reasons for doing this is because I wanted something thinner and lighter than my current laptop and also wanted to diversify and learn OSx so i can hone my skillset with multiple OSs. The retina display will also help my eyes long term with a nice crisp display. I dont know jack shizzle about OSx but i can and will learn. Excited to try out my new MAC.
 

schizrade

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Buy used and save some money. A 2011 17" quad core i7 can be had at a good price. Still plenty fast for what you want to do, none of the sticker shock, plus you can add your own SSD in there.
 

Ryou-kun

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Buy used and save some money. A 2011 17" quad core i7 can be had at a good price. Still plenty fast for what you want to do, none of the sticker shock, plus you can add your own SSD in there.

Yeah, I know. I found one on Amazon for 1.4k that is literally maxed out.
Intel Core i7 Quad Core
16GB RAM
512GB Flash Storage (SSD)
Retina Display
GT 650m I belive

It is a nice deal for that spec if I compare it to other MBPr, it'll cost me nearly 2k or 3k for it.

However, I am not in a rush right now. Music Producer isn't my major. It is more of my hobby or make extra buck if possible.
Also, my money is depended on my Financial Aids Pell Grants, so I am trying to plan out the money.

I also haven't bought Audio Interface and Neutral Headphone yet. Buying MBPr without those two equipment is pretty much shooting myself in the foot.
 

schizrade

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Yeah, don't blow grants on computers. That is stupid. Get your education first, and run whatever you can use until you get a real job. Beg, borrow, steal. lol
 

mikey71497

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Won't say the name of my company but I will say that we handle about 35-40% of the worlds internet traffic. Engineering department consists of many different roles but I would say its about 60/40 Mac.
 

cnealjr

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By the way, there are some people selling MBPr on this forum, right?
How am I suppose to know they are trustworthy to buy it from?
Compare to overclock.net, they have a reputation feature to allow buyer know that they are trustworthy.

Pay with PayPal, not PayPal gift and you are covered if what you buy is not what it was described as what you got. You have 30 days to open a dispute from your purchase.
 

Ryou-kun

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150
Also what machine does Software Engineer use?
I read it somewhere that they use Mac because their OS is "safe" from virus/malwarebytes while Windows isn't and Linus OS is okay, but they don't have a lot of software supports.

Again, I only read it somewhere, so I want some confirmation from Software Engineer's users.
 
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