Is the 2015 MacBook Pro still worth it in 2018/2019?


Late to this party, but your inclination to look into the XPS series is a wise one if you get into Linux. Ubuntu has really matured and is shaping up to be a fantastic choice for a data sci and development alternative to macOS. Even for a ‘regular’ user, Ubuntu has made some giant leaps compared to other distros thanks to Canonical and others making a push for user-friendliness. Data sci isn’t my gig, but hardware, software, and web engineering is.

The status of Apple hardware is meh. Typically over-priced and out-of-date spec wise. The same money can go towards a very solid Windows/Linux rig. I say that as someone who’s been pretty pro-Apple over my life. The upcoming hardware event (probably November-ish) will be interesting as new MacBook Airs are rumored. This has been a much-desired refresh for many years and these models are what really catapulted macOS hardware as dev environments, but have only seen minor spec bumps over time. The Retina MacBooks are severely under-powered and a single USB-C port is laughable then the jump to something better (MBP) is a massive price premium. Not to mention, data sci tends to be pretty CPU/RAM intensive and upgrades for those on Apple are even more spendy.

If you’re really wanting macOS, wait a couple months to see what comes out. If you’re willing to pickup something new and becoming extremely popular, go with an XPS. Their Linux support is tough to beat for something mainstream. Yes, there are various shops like System76 that specialize in Linux or even Chromebooks (with some hacking around), but, honestly, Canonical/Ubuntu is putting time and money into Dell support. You’ll also have no issues dual-booting with Windows which is nice depending on where you end up. Some data sci people work in Windows as well. If you end up at a macOS site, they’ll have no probably handing you a company computer. Save some money now.


I highly agree with this statement; especially with the October Event rolling through soon.


My biggest note on this is Apple has begun a bad track record of announcements, then delays into the next year. I hope they don’t do it again, especially with the Airs, but we’ll see. The rumors have been strong for the past year so, I’d hope they have had the supply chain rolling. Been rocking a 2014 MBP and 2013 MBA for far too long. Not buying another Air unless they do Retina and more than one USB-C port. Would really like to see Thunderbolt 3 as well, but that would eat into the Pro line. ¯_(ツ)_/¯


Honestly at this point I don’t know what to expect anymore haha. It’s like watching a chicken without a head laying eggs that people think are golden eggs, but instead filled with a plethora of erorrs that are, of course, user errors.

I’m still rocking my 2011 MBA which has been absolutely solid for me as a travel machine to take notes and do some writing.

Honestly at this point their laptop line has lost a lot of appeal to who used to be very appealed by them imo. I’d be more interested in going toward their iMac Pro line just for Final Cut Pro for video editing, but that’s another conversation entirely.

Apple Please -_-


I mean, yea, if someone is going to give me a iMac Pro, sure. I just can’t justify the costs for the lack of long-term expansion. Now, if they finally nail a Mac Pro that I can expand, sign me up. But… Apple - Allowing user expansion. Choose one. :confused:

The laptop line mostly appeals to me as I have little ones and hiding laptops is easier than desktops. Also, they help us sell things @ Plugable. :slight_smile:


It is gimmicky :pensive: I don’t understand why Apple didn’t make the screen slightly taller and integrate the touchbar into the screen. I’m thinking they will eventually make the whole keyboard a touch panel and the touchbar is a way of pushing users in that direction.


this brings back memories of when you could hack the Dell Mini laptops and install OS X. I wish Apple would realize they need more product lines for their laptops and desktops specifically for developers and system builders (i.e. the 2015 Macbook Pro with all update internals and screen).

There is a rumored cheaper Apple laptop to replace the Macbook Air, but who knows what that actually means (probably won’t have any ports at all or something absurd).


Circa-2015 MBPs are my favourite to work on, and what most of my coworkers in tech use. Either Linux or MacOS is fine for data science, but you’re going to be quite limited with open source tools if you go with Windows. MacOS is going to be easier to use, and some tools (Tableau for instance) don’t have desktop versions for Linux. Confirm that your tools actually run on your target OS - there’s a reason most devs here use MacOS.