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How Can I Compare Two MacBook Pros? Old To New?

Is a 2012 high spec 13″ i7 16Ram 2.9Ghz 500SSD Macbook pro as fast as a 2016 lower spec i5 8 ram 2.5ghz one?

Comments: 3 Responses to “How Can I Compare Two MacBook Pros? Old To New?”

    2 years ago

    Comparing CPU type and speed, and RAM are only three factors. There are many others. You can google Mac benchmarks and find a comparison between similar Macs with i7/2.9 and i5/2.5 processors. But there is so much more to consider.

    From the tech specs, there is bus speed, L1 cache, GPU, and much more. Look them up in your system information, and then at and I’m sure you’ll see differences on all of those between those two machines.

    Then consider other factors, like external ports. What does the old one have? USB2? That would be a deal-breaker for me as USB3 is so much faster. Plus, Thunderbolt?

    How about the screen? Is the 2016 retina and the 2012 not? Huge difference for many people.

    Age is a big factor. If the average lifetime of a MacBook is 8 years (guess) then the 2012 has two years left and the 2016 has 6. And with MacBooks, the age (cycle count) of the battery would most likely be a huge differentiator between a 2-year-old and a 6-year-old MacBook. The old one may have an almost-dead battery. The old one may have an SSD that is closer to failing because of its age.

    Even if you take all of this into consideration, you then have to measure it against your use. For instance, if one is faster than the other for a specific task, like video editing, does that matter to your work? Even if it does, does it really? For instance, they could both handle web-quality video equally, but one would be better for editing a 4K film. But do you ever need that? It is like if you compare two cars and one tops out at 120MPH and the other at 200MPH. Does that really matter if you are commuting through heavy traffic? Maybe the slower car has more comfortable seats?

    Are these your only two options? Maybe expand your search as maybe neither one of these is right for you.

    Greg ALLEN
    2 years ago

    Thanks. Very good info. Basically I am a pro that travels and edits photos in Lightroom on the fly. I am ready to upgrade from my 13′ i7 2.9Ghz 500ssd and wondered if a lower spec modern ( say 2016 or 2017) would be as good a processing photos. My head is spinning with comparing Geekbench results.

    2 years ago

    Greg: I would think that GPU would be very important for Lightroom, but you may want to ask in a Lightroom forum to find out details on that. I’d think RAM would be important too. And I’m sure that a retina display would be very important to anyone working with images.

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