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  1. #1
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    Ctrl-Opt-Del's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 14, 2011
    Location
    Romford, Essex, England, GB
    Posts
    337
    Your Mac's Specs
    Mac mini Server 4,1 (2.66GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, 16GB RAM, 120GB SSD / 500GB HDD) & iPhone SE (64GB)
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    Surprised a question like this hasnít been asked before (if it has, I couldnít find it). What would the fine people of this find forum say is a MBP that offers the best balance between newness & cheapness in 2019?

    I saw a base-configuration non-retina 2012 13 inch MBP for £385 (~$500) and considered buying & upgrading it - given I gather itís from the last generation of practically user-upgradable Apple notebooks - as a replacement for my frustratingly slow & barely-able-to-hold-a-charge-for-more-than-a-couple-of-hours current laptop (a Pentium-powered, ironically-named Acer Aspire E1-510P, gifted to me by a family member who never used it a couple of years ago), but then Iíve seen conflicting reviews online; some saying itís still a beast as is, others saying itís only good for the most basic of tasks even if maxed-out on RAM & with an SSD.


    Sent from my iPhone using Mac-Forums
    For my purposes as an engineering graduate; Windows is respectable (& generally necessary), Linux is admirable (& often useful), macOS is enjoyable (& requires no further justification, although plenty could be given)!

  2. #2
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    ferrarr's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 21, 2012
    Location
    Pawtucket, RI, US
    Posts
    6,165
    Your Mac's Specs
    L2014 Mac mini macOS 14, iPhone 8+ iOS 12, 12.9" iPad Pro 1 iOS 12, Pencil 1
    Opinions will always differ. What will you be using this for? School? Home? Work? Basics or other?

    This question is always asked, just worded differently. And as the years change, the response do as well.


    Bob -

    Sent from my iPad using Mac-Forums
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  3. #3
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    iggibar's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 20, 2009
    Location
    Cleveland
    Posts
    4,172
    Your Mac's Specs
    yeahhhh...might need to look at my signature
    So it looks like what you are looking for is what is called the "unibody MacBook Pro". This is the chunky generation of the aluminum-bodied MacBook Pro series that allow for user friendly upgrades of HDD and RAM. 2012 was a good year for the 13" MacBook Pro.

    Personally, I would rather go with a top spec 2013 MacBook Pro for the better screen, much quicker, and slimmer design which is still used. The 2012 MBP is still good IMO, and they was pretty dang reliable. I would shop for one with the highest specs you could afford.
    Last edited by iggibar; 04-04-2019 at 07:31 AM.
    3.0GHz 10-core Mac Pro 6.13.46GHz 6-core Mac Pro 5.12.66GHz 4-core Mac Pro 4.12.2GHz 6-core i7 15" MacBook Pro Touch Bar 15.12.4GHz C2D 15" MacBook Pro 5.12.4GHz C2D 13" MacBook Pro 7.1

  4. #4
    Two in my family each are using 13-inch MacBook pros late 2011 with i5 processors.
    No problems except the batteries which were replaced, but OS upgrades are limited to maacOS 10.13

    If I bought a used MacBook pro today I probably would not want anything older than the 2012 Retina.
    Last edited by dtravis7; 04-04-2019 at 03:41 AM.

  5. #5
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    Ctrl-Opt-Del's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 14, 2011
    Location
    Romford, Essex, England, GB
    Posts
    337
    Your Mac's Specs
    Mac mini Server 4,1 (2.66GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, 16GB RAM, 120GB SSD / 500GB HDD) & iPhone SE (64GB)
    Quote Originally Posted by ferrarr View Post
    Opinions will always differ. What will you be using this for? School? Home? Work? Basics or other?

    This question is always asked, just worded differently. And as the years change, the response do as well.


    Bob -

    Sent from my iPad using Mac-Forums
    I was primarily asking in the sense of is the specific MacBook I saw on sale good value at that price, or is it a bargain, or is it a bit expensive, or is it not really worth buying at any price these days (insofar as any money spent on it would be better put towards part of the cost of something newer); and generally asking at what kind of age, on average, the usefulness of MacBooks starts to drop-off faster than the price.


    Sent from my iPhone using Mac-Forums
    For my purposes as an engineering graduate; Windows is respectable (& generally necessary), Linux is admirable (& often useful), macOS is enjoyable (& requires no further justification, although plenty could be given)!

  6. #6
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    Ctrl-Opt-Del's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 14, 2011
    Location
    Romford, Essex, England, GB
    Posts
    337
    Your Mac's Specs
    Mac mini Server 4,1 (2.66GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, 16GB RAM, 120GB SSD / 500GB HDD) & iPhone SE (64GB)
    Quote Originally Posted by iggibar View Post
    So it looks like what you are looking for is what is called the "unibody MacBook Pro". This is the chunky generation of the aluminum-bodied MacBook Pro series that allow for user friendly upgrades of HDD and RAM. 2012 was a good year for the 13" MacBook Pro.

    Personally, I would rather go with a top spec 2013 MacBook Pro for the better screen, much quicker, and slimmer design which is still used. The 2012 MBP is still good IMO, and they was pretty dang reliable. I would shop for one with the highest specs you could afford.
    Going up to the baseline 13Ē i7 model ads £70 (~$90) taking it up to £455 (~$590), would you say that was better value for money than going for the cheapest option, despite being ~18% more expensive?


    Sent from my iPhone using Mac-Forums
    For my purposes as an engineering graduate; Windows is respectable (& generally necessary), Linux is admirable (& often useful), macOS is enjoyable (& requires no further justification, although plenty could be given)!

  7. #7
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    Rod Sprague's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 12, 2011
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia and Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
    Posts
    4,767
    Your Mac's Specs
    MacBook Pro Retina 13" macOSX 10.13.3 beta
    I'd prefer the early 2015 MBPr you get all of the old USB ports, card reader, HDMI etc plus 10.14 compatibility and beyond.


    Sent from my iPhone
    I used to be conceited but now I'm perfect.

  8. #8
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    jasongoldworthy's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 28, 2017
    Location
    Wales, UK
    Posts
    136
    Your Mac's Specs
    iMac Late 2009 32GB Intel Core i7 27" OSX 10.13.6
    don't go with anything older than the 2012 MacBook Pro

    that way you will still get updates passed 10.13 and will be current for a while yet.

    my opinion
    Apple iMac mid 2011 27' intel Core I7 2600.
    32GB DDR3 Ram.
    Mac OSX 10.13.6
    500GB SSD 1TB HDD

  9. #9
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    Rod Sprague's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 12, 2011
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia and Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
    Posts
    4,767
    Your Mac's Specs
    MacBook Pro Retina 13" macOSX 10.13.3 beta
    Oldest (i.e. cheapest) MacBook Pro worth buying
    And one other thing is that the model with the least storage will be cheaper but it's false economy in my mind because you will just need to buy less convenient, slower external memory eventually. Definitely need 256Gb +


    Sent from my iPhone
    I used to be conceited but now I'm perfect.

  10. #10
    The nice thing about the unibody MacBook pros is you can still get in there and upgrade things relatively cheaply.
    Upgrade to an SSD for starters. Also, you can remove the DVD drive, buy a hard drive caddy from eBay and add more storage that way.
    Have you looked on gum tree. Usually a fair bit cheaper than eBay.

    Sent from my SM-N950F using Mac-Forums mobile app

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