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Old 12-30-2013, 09:33 AM   #21
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If you don't have access to edu pricing, you can get applecare for about the same by going to external resellers. Eg. applecare for retina mbp 15 is $350 on apple.com, $239 on edu, and $244 at B&H.

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Once you try the retina display on the Macbook Pro, it will be difficult to go back to anything with a lower resolution. The difference is amazing.
I was skeptical at first that I would like the retina display but I totally agree now. There are some drawbacks as I notice that some web images can be less sharp on the retina (depends also on the effective resolution you run at).
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:39 AM   #22
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I am a lifelong Win user (default choice due to work) though I've been more tempted than ever to buy a MacBook laptop next.

What confuses me most about this thread is the (hardware) problems folks have had with Apple devices in the first place! I've never personally had a HD failure on any of the Win machines I've owned work or personal (typically upgrade every 5-6 yrs), and the only serious issue I did have was a motherboard replacement on a Dell that happened within 90 days and was replaced at my home at no charge. Yes, there were a few HD or other major hardware failures at work, but they were pretty rare, and we had lots of power user/engineers-IT types.

With the higher cost of Apple, I would expect failures to be very rare. OTOH I've never had an issue with any iPod or iPad we've owned, so I'm probably overreacting to the Mac issues reported above. Spooks me a little and I want to like Apple.

BTW, several Win laptops brands offer higher resolution screens than retina display. Not knocking Apple, but are they still the innovation leaders?
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:48 AM   #23
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HD failure can mean a lot of things. If the file system goes wonky, that can be repaired. If genuine hardware failure, need a new HD.

Apple care is a good investment. With an older macbook, we had two HD replacements over a 6 year period. I added it to a new tablet also.

I think all notebook manufacturers have at one time or another made regrettable choices with the internal HD.
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:53 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
I am a lifelong Win user (default choice due to work) though I've been more tempted than ever to buy a MacBook laptop next.

What confuses me most about this thread is the (hardware) problems folks have had with Apple devices in the first place! I've never personally had a HD failure on any of the Win machines I've owned work or personal (typically upgrade every 5-6 yrs), and the only serious issue I did have was a motherboard replacement on a Dell that happened within 90 days and was replaced at my home at no charge. Yes, there were a few HD or other major hardware failures at work, but they were pretty rare, and we had lots of power user/engineers-IT types.

With the higher cost of Apple, I would expect failures to be very rare. OTOH I've never had an issue with any iPod or iPad we've owned, so I'm probably overreacting to the Mac issues reported above. Spooks me a little and I want to like Apple.

BTW, several Win laptops brands offer higher resolution screens than retina display. Not knocking Apple, but are they still the innovation leaders?
I've had one infant mortality HD failure on my PC desktop and once on a work laptop. That said, have dealt with corrupted files and viruses numerous times on both that are quite frustrating. I am guessing Apples are less prone to such outside attacks and file corruptions.
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Old 12-30-2013, 10:19 AM   #25
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I think AppleCare is far more useful for its unlimited phone support than for the hardware warranty. However, if something does go wrong on your Macbook Pro, it's nice to know that a laptop costing upwards of $2K or more is completely covered for three years. That being said, I've never had an Apple device of any kind fail. And that's going all the way back to the original iPod, which still works great other than the battery not holding a full charge.
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Old 12-30-2013, 11:07 AM   #26
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I've had one infant mortality HD failure on my PC desktop and once on a work laptop. That said, have dealt with corrupted files and viruses numerous times on both that are quite frustrating. I am guessing Apples are less prone to such outside attacks and file corruptions.
+1, no disagreement there. I've had about a dozen really frustrating episodes with viruses etc. over the years. Some took several hours for me to resolve on my own, good thing I don't know where the perpetrators were. Unconscionable IMO.
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Old 12-30-2013, 01:38 PM   #27
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We have an iMac and a Mac Pro laptop and we did not purchase the AppleCare. We have had them for a few years now and have not had any problems. However, I would have purchased the AppleCare, if I had read this thread before purchasing them.
Don't worry - repairs usually aren't that expensive.
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Old 12-30-2013, 01:47 PM   #28
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I have had two HD failures on a computer, one Windows and one the MacBook.

The Windows failure was on a desktop, the failure on the MacBook was obviously on a laptop. All things being equal, laptops take more abuse and misuse than a desktop.
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Old 12-30-2013, 01:48 PM   #29
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Well then is the solid state MacBook Air the best value? And is the transition from MS to Apple painful?
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Old 12-30-2013, 02:00 PM   #30
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Well then is the solid state MacBook Air the best value?
SSD is more durable/reliable and faster, but more expensive, so value is subject to individual interpretation.

SSD vs HDD: What's the Difference? | PCMag.com
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Old 12-30-2013, 02:08 PM   #31
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I would not buy a magnetic drive in a laptop. The price of SSDs has come down quite a bit, and the performance difference is quite significant. A laptop with an SSD will still seem responsive years later, even when new operating systems and software applications push it further to its limits. It has a bigger impact on overall performance than buying a faster CPU or more memory.
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Old 12-30-2013, 02:12 PM   #32
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And is the transition from MS to Apple painful?
I found the transition pretty effortless for most of my files (photos, videos, pdf, xls, doc, emails, etc...). However, 2 pieces of software written for Windows had no equivalent in the Apple ecosystem: Quicken and a flight simulator game. I had to find alternatives for those.
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Old 12-30-2013, 02:25 PM   #33
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What confuses me most about this thread is the (hardware) problems folks have had with Apple devices in the first place! I've never personally had a HD failure on any of the Win machines I've owned work or personal (typically upgrade every 5-6 yrs), and the only serious issue I did have was a motherboard replacement on a Dell that happened within 90 days and was replaced at my home at no charge.
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Don't worry - repairs usually aren't that expensive.
Midpack has a valid point. The reason I'll get AppleCare is, with a Wintel platform almost all the HW is designed to be field upgradable. Even someone as mechanically inept as yours truly can (and has many times) perform most repairs and upgrades, no need to pay someone else for labor and list price parts. My understanding is most Apple products, certainly the laptops, are not so designed. Even batteries need to be handled by authorized service people and replacement parts purchased at list.
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Old 12-30-2013, 02:42 PM   #34
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SSD is more durable/reliable and faster, but more expensive, so value is subject to individual interpretation.

SSD vs HDD: What's the Difference? | PCMag.com
As I understand it SSD drives do wear out. Each 'cell' can be written to about 500 times, and then it doesn't work so well anymore. They use a wear leveling algorithm to even this out, but at some point to many 'cells' have been worn out. The bigger the SSD drive, the more cells to spread the wear over, so, all other things being equal, a bigger drive should last longer than a smaller one.
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Old 12-30-2013, 03:27 PM   #35
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All things being equal, laptops take more abuse and misuse than a desktop.
Yes, they get dropped more and also heat dissipation is not that great compared to a desktop. And heat is not a friend of electronics, especially these low voltage and low current applications.

When we get new laptops at work, we routinely swap out the magnetic-based HDD for a solid state drive. One of these days, they will all come that way or we will all be using tablets.
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Old 12-30-2013, 03:29 PM   #36
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Midpack has a valid point. The reason I'll get AppleCare is, with a Wintel platform almost all the HW is designed to be field upgradable. Even someone as mechanically inept as yours truly can (and has many times) perform most repairs and upgrades, no need to pay someone else for labor and list price parts. My understanding is most Apple products, certainly the laptops, are not so designed. Even batteries need to be handled by authorized service people and replacement parts purchased at list.
Now I'm even more spooked re: Apple. I replaced hard drives, power supplies, memory chips and other items on desktop PCs many times at work (never had to at home luckily), it's really pretty easy. Not being able to do anything myself (Mac) would probably drive me batty if something failed...YMMV
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Old 12-30-2013, 03:49 PM   #37
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Now I'm even more spooked re: Apple. I replaced hard drives, power supplies, memory chips and other items on desktop PCs many times at work (never had to at home luckily), it's really pretty easy. Not being able to do anything myself (Mac) would probably drive me batty if something failed...YMMV
Check out YouTube. Plenty of people doing their own repairs/upgrades on Mac computers.
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Old 12-30-2013, 04:03 PM   #38
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Check out YouTube. Plenty of people doing their own repairs/upgrades on Mac computers.
Sure, and it wasn't my intent to say one can't do any work on an Apple computer. Even on laptops, however, the typical Dell, HP or Lenovo is more accessible.

I'm still going to get a Macbook, because it the GUI is far superior. SW causes >90% of our problems, it is so much simpler with Apple architecture. DW took to the iPhone like a fish to water.
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