What Macbook Pro should i use as a DD? 13" vs 15"

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These are not new macbooks, but i usually buy maxed out older macbooks, older being within the last few years. My current DD is a 2015 13" i7 3.1Ghz Dual Core/16GB 1867 Ram/512 SSD/Big Sur but i have a client that wants their first MacBook ever so i found and bought a Late 2013 Macbook Pro 15" Quad Core i7/16GB 1600 Ram/500GB SSD/NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M with 2GB Vman, and got thinking, that the 15" might be overkill for a first time Macbook user.. So i'm thinking about selling them the 13" for a little cheaper and using the 15" as a new DD, as i would use the extra power more often, then they would. They are both in fantastic condition, both have snap on cases to protect them, and both have about the same battery health and cycle count with OEM 80 watt power adapters. I even replaced the thermal paste on the 13" with arctic silver 5 and it runs COOL!. No issues with either of them.

My only concern is that the late 2013 will be no longer supported after big sur. Is this worry justified? Its a fine machine, and i notice how snappy it is over my 13" and the beautiful retina screen real estate is very noticeable!.

What would you do in my position with these two machines? Does the 15" have any known issues? Neither Macbook screen suffers from the delamination issue, so they are perfect, bright, and beautiful.

Thank you from your input!!
 

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09 GLS

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I already made up my mind lol, im transferring all info over from the 13" to the 15" and will use the 15" as the DD. The extra power is very noticeable for someone like me, and extra screen is a huge plus!. While older, by about 1.5 years, it would SMOKE my 13" under all conditions.. The 15" might have shorter battery life, but i'm plugged in 95% of the time so that a non issue for me.
 

09 GLS

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First things first since I’m keeping the 15” is new thermal paste! Using arctic silver 5 for both cpu and cpu! I was not running hot or anything but with macs the cooler the better! So this is always my first upgrade!
 

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09 GLS

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So i dropped almost 15-20 degrees at idle! Will probably translate to that also under load! The old paste was dried out, and flaked off. It will only get better as time passes because the new paste has a cure time, of maybe a few heat cycles. Well worth it!.
 
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Nice machines. If I had to choose between the two, I would also have gone with the 4c i7. It is unfortunate how macOS versions leave older machines behind -- but I do understand why.

I recently worked on a mid-2010 (11 year old!) iMac 21.5" with macOS High Sierra. Still browses the web without an issue and does 3/4 of its tasks just fine.

My current DD Mac is a 2019 16" MacBook Pro, 2.6 6c i7, 16GB DDR4, 512GB SSD and a 4GB AMD Radeon Pro 5300M. Fine machine keeps me very satisfied.
 

09 GLS

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The new thermal paste has cured, and idle temps are about 100-115F. Under full load it goes up to about 185F with 4500RPM fans, and never above, even with its super thin heatsink, with high quality thermal paste, the CPU never thermal throttles, or the case gets above warm. The cooling system on the 15" is up to the task, as the 2015 MBP 13" with one fan, the whole case would get almost get hot.
Screen Shot 2021-09-30 at 7.10.52 AM.jpg
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I know this is late, but I'd skip a 2013 entirely and go 2015 15". I had a 2015 13" for a while before I got my M1(although it didn't completely replace my 2012 15" beast since the quad core was still faster for a lot of what I do).

Some 2013s have SATA based storage, while the late ones have PCIe. PCIe storage is a significant upgrade. With that said, the 2015s have PCIe 3.0, which is a big jump in speed from the older PCIe 2.0 drives. The native Apple drives aren't always faster(there were a couple of revs of them, and the bigger ones tend to be faster) BUT it's easy to put an off-the-shelf NVMe drive in a 2015 and have it run at its fully rated speed(PCIe 2.0 will choke most of the better ones). I had a 1tb EVO 960 Plus in my 13" 2015 and it made a huge difference in speed and "snappiness" of the system(my wife got the hand me down 512gb Apple drive I'd installed in it for her 2015 MBA, and she was pleased with the speed upgrade also).

The other thing about the 2015 15" is you get Haswell CPUs, which are not necessarily faster than the 2013s(although everything else about the system is faster so it's still an improvement), BUT Haswell/Broadwell gave a huge jump in performance/watt vs. earlier generations. That means that for a given workload, the 2015s can run cooler(not M1 cool, but still cooler, or at least with the fans running less) and more importantly to me, the battery is quite good. I'd get 6-7 hours reliably out of my 13" Broadwell MBP.

The 2015s do hold their value since they are the best MBPs in terms of CPUs and GPUs that have a useful collection of ports(USB-A, SD card, HDMI, Magsafe), user-upgradeable storage, and some semblance of repairability. The 2015s have held their value the way the 2012 non-Retinas did until OS support ran out(since they have ODDs/a second drive bay and user-upgradeable RAM). 2015 15" MBPs also have no known GPU issues, which is a never-ending problem with dGPU Macs. That reminds me-I need to send my 2011 17" off to have the dGPU disabled so that I can actually use it.
 

JHZR2

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I’m running that exact late 2013 MBP for a lot of things. Lack of support doesn’t concern me much.
 

09 GLS

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I know this is late, but I'd skip a 2013 entirely and go 2015 15". I had a 2015 13" for a while before I got my M1(although it didn't completely replace my 2012 15" beast since the quad core was still faster for a lot of what I do).

Some 2013s have SATA based storage, while the late ones have PCIe. PCIe storage is a significant upgrade. With that said, the 2015s have PCIe 3.0, which is a big jump in speed from the older PCIe 2.0 drives. The native Apple drives aren't always faster(there were a couple of revs of them, and the bigger ones tend to be faster) BUT it's easy to put an off-the-shelf NVMe drive in a 2015 and have it run at its fully rated speed(PCIe 2.0 will choke most of the better ones). I had a 1tb EVO 960 Plus in my 13" 2015 and it made a huge difference in speed and "snappiness" of the system(my wife got the hand me down 512gb Apple drive I'd installed in it for her 2015 MBA, and she was pleased with the speed upgrade also).

The other thing about the 2015 15" is you get Haswell CPUs, which are not necessarily faster than the 2013s(although everything else about the system is faster so it's still an improvement), BUT Haswell/Broadwell gave a huge jump in performance/watt vs. earlier generations. That means that for a given workload, the 2015s can run cooler(not M1 cool, but still cooler, or at least with the fans running less) and more importantly to me, the battery is quite good. I'd get 6-7 hours reliably out of my 13" Broadwell MBP.

The 2015s do hold their value since they are the best MBPs in terms of CPUs and GPUs that have a useful collection of ports(USB-A, SD card, HDMI, Magsafe), user-upgradeable storage, and some semblance of repairability. The 2015s have held their value the way the 2012 non-Retinas did until OS support ran out(since they have ODDs/a second drive bay and user-upgradeable RAM). 2015 15" MBPs also have no known GPU issues, which is a never-ending problem with dGPU Macs. That reminds me-I need to send my 2011 17" off to have the dGPU disabled so that I can actually use it.
Thank you for the detailed response!
So that was one of first things i was going to upgrade was the SSD, but it already has a NVMe drive running at: Link Width: x4 Link Speed: 5.0 GT/s and speed test are around 1550 Mbps read/write more then fast enough for this system. Its very snappy.
I’m running that exact late 2013 MBP for a lot of things. Lack of support doesn’t concern me much.
Just found out that this system will support monterey when its released. That will buy me another year or 2 haha. I think for what you are getting, these are fantastic and reliable systems.
 
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