Looking for a Mac Laptop

strikeout

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Oct 3, 2005
Messages
1,360
I need a new Mac laptop for my daughter as required for her school(private school, 6th grade). I hear there will be a lot of multimedia projects via keynote and maybe Iphoto/Imovie. I'm thinking about about a 13" macbook air 8gigs ram i5 256 ssd. I could go slower with 4gigs but I think the multimedia stuff would suffer. We plan to dump it and refresh for highschool 3 yrs later.
 

SuperSubZero

2[H]4U
Joined
Nov 21, 2000
Messages
3,658
The 13" Retina at 8GB/256B would probably more more future proof. The processor and screen are worth the mild premium.
 

UnknownSouljer

Supreme [H]ardness
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Sep 24, 2001
Messages
6,752
I would probably just buy an older 2012 13" Macbook Pro and install your own SSD and RAM into it.
If you have tons of money to spend, then yeah, just max out a new 13" MBPr.

People get touchy about their kids, so this isn't made to be taken personally: she's in 6th grade. She more than likely won't need anything crazy powerful for a few years yet, and it makes more sense to hold onto that money now and buy something newer faster a few years down the line in HS when it really matters. Heck, if you were super fiscally motivated, you could probably take the difference on what you save, invest it, and then have all the money you'll need to buy a new Laptop when she hits Sophmore or Junior year in HS when it becomes a bit more important.
 
Joined
Dec 1, 2011
Messages
889
The system the OP describes seems reasonable for the use case. 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage would be the minimum I'd say.

Unless she would somehow benefit from the rMBP's higher resolution or faster CPU, I'd skip it. It is only $300 more for the same RAM/storage and under normal use could have a longer useful life, but given the way kids can rough-up and lose things I'd be reluctant to put more cash into this than needed.

As for the the non-retina MBP, I'd consider skipping it based on weight alone. I assume she's going to be hauling this system between home and school along with books and other materials, and the Air is 1.5 lbs lighter. It's also very out-dated, with an Ivy Bridge CPU/GPU and non-flash storage.

You may want to check Apple's refurbs, which are usually well-regarded, to see if you can get something discounted.

And I'm guessing that, given this is for school, it's not possible to wait for Apple to finally put out their massively overdue updates for everything but the base MacBook?
 

Verge

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
May 27, 2001
Messages
6,648
I need a new Mac laptop for my daughter as required for her school(private school, 6th grade). I hear there will be a lot of multimedia projects via keynote and maybe Iphoto/Imovie. I'm thinking about about a 13" macbook air 8gigs ram i5 256 ssd. I could go slower with 4gigs but I think the multimedia stuff would suffer. We plan to dump it and refresh for highschool 3 yrs later.

If the school is specifically saying keynote and iMovie, then they are specifically asking you to buy her a mac.


If they are specifically asking you to buy her a mac, then they should be recommending a specific model.


Just buy that model.



If the school doesn't use OS X, don't buy her a mac, will just lead to mass confusion.
 

next-Jin

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 29, 2006
Messages
6,579
I'd get a used Macbook Air 13", I would not buy a brand new macbook pro right now (regardless of age due to refresh in a month or so). For a 6th grader get a used Air, it'll have a ton of stickers on it and will likely be broken in 2 years anyway. Wait till High School to buy a Macbook Pro *used of course.
 
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