Looking for Macbook Pro alternative for small business, need advice

strijkijzer

Commendable
Nov 10, 2016
1
0
1,510
0
Dear friends,

I work in a small sized (15-20 FTE) industrial engineering company. Our standard issue has been the top of the line 15,4 MBP for the last 7 years, after switching from MSI windows laptops.

Our workplaces have a TB2 dock with the monitor, ethernet and peripherals attached to it. This actually works great for us, we (and I as admin) are pretty happy with the costs for support and TCO.

The company managing directors have been charmed by the ease of use and representativeness of the machines. Happy and cheerful we were.

Then however, apple decided we need to get with the times and go USB-C, well shit... Also, they've decided to up the prices and lower the reparability... again. Now, if we decide (and we plan to) hire new people, or folks are up for upgrade in the 5 year cycle, the standard thing to do would be to buy a latest edition MBP 15,4inch. this time around though, it would mean the following:

A comperable model got more expensive: 400€
We need a type C to TB2 dongle for our docks: 35€
We need a type C to HDMI+ usb A dongle for our beamer and external HDD’s/Iphones: 60€

This is a 500€ premium per device, adding to the fact that dongles suck… We aldo can’t upgrade to USB-C stuff until everyone is on at least 2016 MBP’s, which will be 2020 for the last of us.

Most importantly, Apple shits on us every now and again, and makes it very hard to predict which direction they are going to take in terms of IO. We are now considering a windows alternative; because of the flexibility it would afford us when a brand decides to take the said dump.

But to be honest, I have trouble finding a good alternative as of now. This strikes me as strange, as windows users always tell me you can get Mac specs for 1000€ less on a windows machine. We have the following requirements:

- Good build quality and a representative design
- 15" Display
- An 4 core HT i7-U processor
- PCI-based SSD
- Least 16GB of memory
- Preferably TB2 I/O
- HDMI
- USB-A 3.0
- Min. 1800P display
- WiFi at AC spec
- Great battery life
- Max. 2015 MBP price (2200€)

It would be great to get some suggestions. Thanks in advance!
 

jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
I am not a Mac user, however I read something pretty interesting about IBM's experience rolling out Mac for employees back in 2015 (link below). I think it is worth reading just to get some perspective.

http://www.cio.com/article/3001871/macbook/switch-to-macs-from-pcs-reportedly-saves-ibm-270-per-user.html


As for your quest to find a viable laptop candidate to replace the MacBook Pros, I suggest looking at the Dell XPS 15 which I believe should be within your budget. Note that there are two battery options; the standard battery is 56WHr while the larger capacity battery is I think 84WHr. Be aware that the larger battery occupies the space where a 2.5" drive would normally be installed. Therefore, the only port for storage is a PCIe M.2 slot. I know 1TB SATA M.2 SSDs were recently released and I think 1TB PCIe M.2 SSDs are due out in 2017 if that makes any difference to you. Based on reviews, I believe "average battery life" test pegs the 56WHr battery at about 8 hours and the 84WHr at around 11 hours with the 1080p screen. The 4k screen reduces battery life by around 1.5 hours.

It should meet or exceed your listed requirements. Note, there is no such thing as a "4 core HT i7-U processor". Intel "U" model CPUs are all dual core CPUs. The Dell XPS can have up to a quad core i7-6700HQ CPU. Also, there is no such thing as a "1800P Display" so you will have to settle for either 1080p or 4k resolution. ;)

It can support up to 32GB of DDR4 RAM (2 x 16GB sticks) and it has TB3.
 

jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
I am not a Mac user, however I read something pretty interesting about IBM's experience rolling out Mac for employees back in 2015 (link below). I think it is worth reading just to get some perspective.

http://www.cio.com/article/3001871/macbook/switch-to-macs-from-pcs-reportedly-saves-ibm-270-per-user.html


As for your quest to find a viable laptop candidate to replace the MacBook Pros, I suggest looking at the Dell XPS 15 which I believe should be within your budget. Note that there are two battery options; the standard battery is 56WHr while the larger capacity battery is I think 84WHr. Be aware that the larger battery occupies the space where a 2.5" drive would normally be installed. Therefore, the only port for storage is a PCIe M.2 slot. I know 1TB SATA M.2 SSDs were recently released and I think 1TB PCIe M.2 SSDs are due out in 2017 if that makes any difference to you. Based on reviews, I believe "average battery life" test pegs the 56WHr battery at about 8 hours and the 84WHr at around 11 hours with the 1080p screen. The 4k screen reduces battery life by around 1.5 hours.

It should meet or exceed your listed requirements. Note, there is no such thing as a "4 core HT i7-U processor". Intel "U" model CPUs are all dual core CPUs. The Dell XPS can have up to a quad core i7-6700HQ CPU. Also, there is no such thing as a "1800P Display" so you will have to settle for either 1080p or 4k resolution. ;)

It can support up to 32GB of DDR4 RAM (2 x 16GB sticks) and it has TB3.
 
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