I've been looking into buying a used MacBook Pro. I have a set of specs in mind (500 GB, 8 GB RAM, 2.5+ GHz). I've found MacBook Pros with all of these specs, but some are 2009 models, some are 2010, and others are 2011. Of course the newest ones are more expensive, but I was wondering: are they really worth the money over the '09 models?
Answer by Vadrotan · Jan 22, 2013 at 11:11 PM
The chief difference would probably be the type of CPU each one is using. The '09 models are using the Core 2 Duo chips which are getting too old to comfortably recommend. '10 is using first gen Core series chips which are good, but they're definitely aging. The '11 models are using second gen Core series chips which are very good and haven't really started to show their age yet, so they certainly get the nod in my opinion. I know the '11 models will cost you now, but in a year or two when it's still going strong you won't regret it. Oh, don't worry about clock speed, a 2.0GHz second gen Core series will absolutely destroy a 2.5GHz Core 2 Duo or Quad.
Also I wouldn't worry to much about the RAM, in those model years it is still (easily) user replaceable and may it may actually save you some money to do the upgrade yourself. The hard drive can be upgraded as well but it is a slightly more involved process.