Laptop Consideration

As I’m wringing this, I’m presently using a MacBook Pro Late-2013 model… dated for sure, however it was receiving software updates and patches through Apples release of Big Sur, which was at the tail end of 2021, and while it doesn’t receive .0 OSX updates anymore, Apple will still throw the occasional security patch its way. 8 (+) years is quite the support lifecycle that I never expected. I upgraded my iPad back in 2018 to an iPad Pro 10.5; this was a massive update from the 3rd generation iPad that I was using previously – which still had the 30-pin connector, however was the first generation to offer the Retina display.

Recently I’ve been considering an update to this MacBook as it is 10 years old this year and is a little over two years out of the support lifecycle, but I’m torn on which direction to go.. I’m not 100% committed to the Apple Ecosystem when it comes to PCs at home – my desktop is an HP Elite Desk with an 8th Generation i5 Processor, and 32gb of RAM, something I got an amazing deal on through a work purchase program.

With that being said though, in the 10 years I’ve had this MacBook, I’ve only ever had two issues that were related to the OS, and one major hardware problem.. I received this laptop as a gift my sophomore year of college in 2013, and was only about a year and a half after I got the Mac in 2015, where my battery essentially would drain from 100% to 20% in a matter of minutes and needed replacement. That was a fluke for sure as the new one (now being eight years old) can still hold a charge for the better part of a day. As far as the software issues go, I got a piece of malware that corrupted my system and had to be restored in 2016, and then in 2018 (part of the reason I upgraded my iPad with a sense of urgency to get one of my final Masters program projects completed) received a bad update that required a DFU boot and restore when a new patch was released.

So, which direction to go? Presently I’m looking at Microsoft Surface Laptops – I can get a pretty good deal on a generation old model at the moment, or to go the route of a new MacBook, in which I’m looking at the M1 or new M2 Air models.. My predominant use for this is hopefully going to be more photo editing – while my desktop takes the brunt of the video editing that I do, it would be nice to have something that I’m confident could handle some basics on that front, but something a little more portable for the predominant photography work as I tend to do a bit more of that on the go.

I’m leaning heavily towards the M2 Air – its small form factor makes it a viable replacement to my iPad as that’ll likely begin to get the ‘legacy’ treatment soon as that model hits 6 years since release in 2023, in addition to providing a full desktop operating system that I still can’t bring myself to step away from like a lot of people have. Running ham application such as WSJT-X and RoverLog that aren’t setup for a mobile OS make that a hard move. Would I notice the difference between the M1 and the M2 though are what I really keep asking myself? Is that $200 worth the additional (maybe) year that I’ll really get out of the support lifecycle?

After having traded in my Series 7 Apple Watch, I have an additional almost $200 in store credit to apply to whichever purchase I decide to go with at least, so that makes the sting of Apple PC Prices hurt a little bit less for sure… well that and the support lifecycle.


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