Need a new 15" MBP - with or without Touch Bar?
I have a mid-2012 15" MBP Retina that is sadly on the fritz, so it's time to get a replacement. The options on the Apple site are the new Touch Bar model, and an older (2015?) version which looks pretty much like my current one. I'll be going for the lowest-price model in either case, with an upgrade to a 512 GB SSD. The Touch Bar model is an extra $400.
I'd really appreciate any advice on which option to choose. It seems that the big sticking points are
- Ports: the Touch Bar model would involve dongle hell, but I don't know for how long. And if I stick with the older model, with USB and HDMI, will I find myself needing new dongles within this laptop's lifetime as USB-C or Thunderbolt become more ubiquitous? I can't tell whether it's worth living in dongle hell for however long in order to be future-proof.
- The Touch Bar: worth springing for, or just a nice but not-so-useful gimmick?
- Price: is the Touch Bar model worth an extra $400, or more including various dongles and equipment upgrades?
I'm a research scientist so my main uses are the usual things (web browsing, movie watching, mail), as well as PDF reading and Mathematica. I'll usually have two hard drives plugged in (one for external storage and one for backup), and often HDMI for output to my TV.