The Real Cost Of Brand New Macs

How much will that shiny new Mac really cost? // Photo// CC BY-SA 4.0

For low-end Mac fans, the thought of splashing out on a brand new model is painful. It is too much of a blow to the wallet, and the idea of upgrading and recycling until a machine has truly run its course simply sounds more reasonable. There will be hundreds of thousands of people buying high-end Macs this Christmas, but how much will the latest models actually set them back?

It’s each to their own really. Keeping a 90s Mac running until today is no easy feat. It takes patience and understanding, knowledge and a willingness to constantly decipher and fix problems. For many who have the money, or who need their Mac for business (and are willing to pay for it), buying a new model does make some sense.

Apple pretty much keeps their prices the same year-on-year. That is to say, the latest releases this year are similar in price to the releases of 2017, when the entry-level MacBook cost around $1,299, or $1,599 with a 1.3 GHz Intel Core i5 processor and 512GB storage. We are still awaiting news on the new 12’ MacBook, but the new 2018 MacBook Air starts at around $1,200, a slightly lower price than is usual for the range.

In mid-2018, the new 15’ MacBook Pro was released, a higher end machine with a faster processor, better GPU and double the SDD storage. It features a 6-core i7 – i9, and starts at 512 GB storage and 16 GB RAM for the basic package.

You’re looking at spending a couple of grand on a very basic model, but here’s where the real cost of a new Mac comes in… to get 32GB RAM will cost an extra $400, and to get the maximum 4TB storage (but who really needs that?) will set you back a whopping $3,000+ extra. The total cost of the top end Macbook Pro for 2018 is around $6,700.

The less powerful 13’ version is a cheaper option, and more economical for those who don’t need as much power and storage. It comes in at around $1,799 for a “high-end” edition.

The desktop iMac Pro is the most powerful Apple machine you can get at the moment. With an 8 – 16 core Intel Xeon processor, up to 128 GB of RAM, and up to 4TB of storage, this is a serious machine, but it also comes with a serious price tag. With 32GB of RAM and 1TB of storage, it comes in at $4,999.

You can imagine that many people would need to take out a loan to buy one, and there are loans available even with bad credit for those who need a machine like this for business. Adding extra features and spec increases the price so that it can reach several thousand dollars more.

The latest Mac Mini was released in 2018. This is perhaps the lowest cost new Mac on the market, but naturally, it also has lower specs. It’s $799 to buy the base model, but by the time you purchase extra RAM and the like, you may as well jump to the 3.0 GHz 6-core i5 model for $1,099. Like everything with Apple, you get what you pay for.