Need help with model selection

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I'm emerging from the dark ages it seems. My 2008 13" Macbook has been great but it is time to move on. The choices confuse me. I do not play games or do any type of photo editing or music. I don't really do apps but do store podcasts and music for my Ipod. I occasionally make some amateur home videos (3 min.) and use my notebook at night for surfing, watching netflix and doing emails. I do use word for mac and excel at times.

Can someone tell me which of these notebooks would be suitable and which ones would be overkill? Up until last year I did fine on 4 GB memory but just upgraded it to 8 GB. I really am not on a budget.

I think the first one is the "new" Macbook. It only has a 12" screen and a new sized USB port. Are there any other concerns to have about something this new? I am not a teenager and don't know if I would like the smaller screen.

I assume none of these have upgradeable processors or hard drives after purchase?

How is the "new" Macbook better than the MacBook Pro 13" w/retinal display?

Are any of these the "old" model that have the optical drive? I already have an old one and am ready for new and improved.

Sorry for all the questions.

MacBook
from $1299
12‑inch (diagonal) LED‑backlit Retina display
1.1GHz, 1.2GHz, or 1.3GHz dual‑core Intel Core M processor
Turbo Boost up to 2.9GHz
Up to 9 hours battery life1
Up to 512GB flash storage2
2.03 pounds


MacBook Pro 13‑inch
$1099
13.3‑inch (diagonal) LED-backlit display
2.5GHz dual‑core Intel Core i5 or 2.9GHz dual‑core Intel Core i7 processor
Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
Up to 7 hours battery life1
Up to 1TB 5400‑rpm hard drive; or up to 512GB solid‑state drive2
4.53 pounds3


MacBook Pro 13‑inch
with Retina display
from $1299
13.3‑inch (diagonal) LED‑backlit Retina display
2.7GHz or 2.9GHz dual‑core Intel Core i5 or 3.1GHz dual‑core Intel Core i7 processor
Turbo Boost up to 3.4 GHz
Up to 10 hours battery life1
Up to 1TB flash storage2
3.48 pounds3


MacBook Pro 15‑inch
with Retina display
from $1999
15.4‑inch (diagonal) LED‑backlit Retina display
2.2GHz, 2.5GHz, or 2.8GHz quad‑core Intel Core i7 processor
Turbo Boost up to 4.0GHz
Up to 8 hours battery life1
Up to 1TB flash storage2
4.46 pounds3
 
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Depends on what size you like, but if it were my option with that no budget restraints my choice would be number 3, 3.0GHz i7 (no 3.1GHz?) and the 16GB of memory and 1TB flash storage. Early 2012 models had the optical drive, after that optional Apple external superdrive. DVDs are really on the ay out with USB thumb drives handling much greater capacities.
 
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Well I do love to shop - for computers!!

For what it is worth -

I like the looks of the new macbook but for my money I want at least 1 standard USB port and it does not have one without a $79 dongle. That is just not for me. Also I have a Macbook Air 13" and that is a small enough screen for my old eyes.

The Macbook Pros are all nice. It just depends on what size screen you like and how long you want your battery to work.

Basic suggestions for any model (IMO)

1. 8GB of memory or more

2. 1TB SSD (flash storage) drive - seriously, since you say your not on a tight budget get the largest SSD you can get. The increase in speed will be worth it.

Lisa
 
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is the weight of the 15" noticeably more than the 13"? I might like the larger screen since my eyes are not the best. At night I put the notebook on my chest in bed and the 13" weight doesn't bother me at all.
 
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I am going to insert my preferences in here. You are looking at the Macbook and several Macbook Pro's.

I have several computers I do work on, but for my "at home, fun computer" I have a 13" Macbook Air. I love it. I get 12 hours of battery life. I will sit and watch TV with it in my lap and surf at the same time.

I also have a 15" Macbook Pro and at first I was using it at home for my lap computer. It would get noticeably warm and not really too heavy but a noticeable weight. The MB Air, in my opinion, is the perfect lap computer. You use it, then close it like a book and it sleeps until you open it again and it is ready to go - of course they all do that but I light the light weight feel of it, yet it is very sturdy.

I did not buy a powerhouse MB Air. I knew I did not need it. It is an i5 with 4GB of memory and a 250 hard drive. I have edited a couple of short iMovies on it and several pictures in Photoshop on it. I have had no issues doing that. I imagine if you purchase the i7 with 8GB of memory it will do what ever you want.

With what you are planning to use it for I just wonder if you might like the 13" MB Air better. I have a tad bit of age which has necessitated reading and computer glasses. I find the 13" is large enough for web browsing. I can't say the same for the 11" as I had trouble with a PC that had that size screen - can'T imagine a 12" is that much bigger.

Just some thoughts!

Lisa
 
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is the weight of the 15" noticeably more than the 13"? I might like the larger screen since my eyes are not the best. At night I put the notebook on my chest in bed and the 13" weight doesn't bother me at all.

Hi Nancyspeed - I have a 2 y/o MBPro 13" retina w/ 256 GB SSD & 8 GB RAM - shown below is the current offering online - if I wanted to replace the laptop, the current cost is $1800 as configured - I would likely change those 'blue dots' on the Processor (3.1 GHz) & RAM (up to 16 GB) - my current SSD is about 68% filled (I have a LOT of music which I transferred to our iDevices) - I'd likely keep it at 512 GB (twice mine now) and save $500 - invest in Apple Care instead; now I'm only saying this based on your comments, do you really need a 1 TB SSD? But my 2 cents - you'll get many differing opinions.

Also, consider portability, i.e. will this new machine be left mainly in your house or carry often outside the home, on planes, or trips? If so, size and weight are certainly an issue, and I would recommend the 13" screen. Good luck in your selection - Dave :)

.
 
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is the weight of the 15" noticeably more than the 13"? I might like the larger screen since my eyes are not the best. At night I put the notebook on my chest in bed and the 13" weight doesn't bother me at all.

Your first post told us the 15" is one pound (lb) heavier.
 
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I hadn't considered the Air due to some things I read about it on the forum. Honestly the only thing I can remember is you can't change the battery. Maybe something about the processor also?
 
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What you are probably referring to is that in the case of the MB Air you need to order the memory and SSD you want because neither are upgradeable. What you order is what you are stuck with. I believe this is the same for the new macbook too.

And I believe the memory is not upgradeable in the new Macbook Pro's either.

But both the MB Pro and the MB Air can have the battery replaced by an adventurous person. Check out the iFixit how to's just for a reference:

For the 2014 Air: https://www.ifixit.com/Device/MacBook_Air_13"_Early_2014

For the 2014 Pro: https://www.ifixit.com/Device/MacBook_Pro_13"_Retina_Display_Mid_2014

I would assume since you are planning to buy new you would also add apple care which is well worth the investment.

If battery replacement is a concern, I would be much more concerned with the new macbook. That is really new and different.

Lisa
 

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