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View Full Version : Apple Laptop dilemma - You've heard it before.



Noodles
6th June 2007, 09:22 AM
Hello,

I'm wanting to get a laptop for general use both at home and study.
My house currently has an older PowerMac G5, but I wanted something for myself - that's portable.

I'd always looked at the MacBooks but sorta cringed at the number of problems users have been having with these things. When they were updated a few weeks ago I though, great - I know most people weren't happy with the updates, but any price drop is worth it imo.

Now today the new MacBook Pros have been released and I'm just confuzzled. Next Friday I'd have enough to get any of the MacBooks but not enough for the new MacBook Pros. I get paid monthly so I'd have to wait until the 15th of July before I could get my hands on a MacBook Pro.

As much as I know the MacBook would suit my needs fine, the MacBook Pro's better build quality and general sleek aluminium-ness draws me in. Plus the good battery life and inclusions on the base model.

Now, my questions:

For the MacBook there is a $300 price difference (before EDU price disc.) between the middle and upper models.. but yet the only difference in specs is a 40GB of HDD space?
I could upgrade the HDD in the middle to 160GB for $200 cheaper than buying the top model.

Is there something I'm missing? Is there a surcharge because the thing is black?

Also, could anyone please give their general opinion on getting the MacBook or waiting for a Pro?

Oh, and I can only get a EDU disc through the online store now, can't I?


Thank you in advance.

hawker
6th June 2007, 09:27 AM
You can get an edu discount through selected resellers (mainly on campus) but you're safer to get it online, but be ready to fax through ID if they need it.

Personally, go for what you need, if you only need a MacBook, buy the macbook and then pay extra money later and get more RAM / HD etc etc...

The only real reason you should go for the faster Mac Book Pros, is if you want the bigger screen real-estate of the better graphics card.

decryption
6th June 2007, 09:27 AM
Is there something I'm missing? Is there a surcharge because the thing is black?

Yep :)


Oh, and I can only get a EDU disc through the online store now, can't I?

Yep :)

Bart Smastard
6th June 2007, 10:22 AM
Personally, if I was in the same situation and knew I'd have the money next month, I'd go for the MacBook Pro. You have already stated the reasons why this would be a better choice.

hiredgoon
7th June 2007, 04:48 PM
well. all i have done for the bloody past 2 months is bloody look at bloody mbp, lcd monitors, accessories, bloody bags, bloody RAM upgrades and im bloody pissed because im bloody confused. one person says one thing and another bloody person says another bloody thing. its bloody ridiculous. just buy a spirax book, nice pen and pencil and a bloody good calculator.

danielvh
7th June 2007, 04:55 PM
...bloody...bloody...bloody...bloody...bloody...bl oody...bloody...bloody...bloody...bloody...bloody. ..
bloody hell! ;)

Lol, sorry for that. It really comes down to two things:
Graphics card and Screen size.

You need to ask yourself:
1) Is there anything I'm doing that requires a discrete graphics card?
2) Do I need a larger screen than 13.3" when on the go?

If the answer to either of those is yes then pick yourself up a Macbook Pro. If both answers came back with a no then buy a Macbook and laugh all the way to the bank with the money saved. (and maybe spend it on an external monitor to use at work/home).

Daniel

lenman74
7th June 2007, 04:59 PM
bloody hell! ;)

Lol, sorry for that. It really comes down to two things:
Graphics card and Screen size.

You need to ask yourself:
1) Is there anything I'm doing that requires a discrete graphics card?
2) Do I need a larger screen than 13.3" when on the go?

If the answer to either of those is yes then pick yourself up a Macbook Pro. If both answers came back with a no then buy a Macbook and laugh all the way to the bank with the money saved. (and maybe spend it on an external monitor to use at work/home).

Daniel

and maybe some external speakers. those macbook speakers are very average.

hiredgoon
7th June 2007, 05:02 PM
come on noodles, ask which mbp, which monitor and what speakers.

catbert6
7th June 2007, 05:53 PM
If you play, or want to be able to play, any sort of graphic intensive games - Civ IV / WoW - wait for the MBP. It was what tipped it for me - I would have preferred the MacBook in almost every regard if it had had decent gaming graphics. And once you have got it, your stuck with it.

Noodles
7th June 2007, 06:13 PM
come on noodles, ask which mbp, which monitor and what speakers.

Hmm?


Thanks for the responses guys! I wish I could just easily say, "okay I'm going for the MacBook" - but things are never like that for me.

The 13" versus the 15" isn't really that important. Both will fit in a bag, however, now that I think of it 2" does make a difference.

I don't really need the MacBook Pro, but its gfx, base inclusions and general sleek construction makes me think otherwise.

Since this is the third revision (?) of the MacBook, would it be safe to say that a lot of the problems plaguing it should be solved by now? I don't know, I just don't like the plasticiness of it.

Oh and I don't need to worry about speakers. I'm a headphones person. I have a small collection of good Sennheiser headphones to choose from. ;)

timwallG5
7th June 2007, 06:20 PM
The MacBook should be fine; but don't expect to play any new games on it. It'll play games from the 90's and early 2000's perfectly well [i.e. Windows DirectX 8-style games], but don't expect any more than that.

That said, it technically can play newer games like Doom 3, CoD2 etc. at really low resolutions - if you're a fan of gaming, go with the MBP. You won't regret a 15" - they make the MacBooks look crap. (And they shit all over them in practically every way...)

I'd say, either get a 2nd-hand/refurb C2D MacBook Pro (the ones before the updated ones) - for a reduced price, or splash out on a new one.

something2sea
7th June 2007, 07:00 PM
i've got the updated macbook (middle version)… and have had abeslutely no issues with it
it's a lovely machine, and, yeah, in many ways… i'd say it's more durable than the alBooks

Squozen
7th June 2007, 07:19 PM
If you don't need the features the Pro gives you, pocket the difference and get the MacBook - they're wonderful machines.

Noodles
7th June 2007, 07:46 PM
If I were to go with the Book Pro, which is the advisable: the matte or glossy screen?

I'd probably be watching lots of DVDs on it, however I will be using it for photos and maybe some Photoshop work.

invisible
7th June 2007, 08:28 PM
my 2cents... get a macbook. jack up the ram / hdd, get an external screen for when you're at your desk. if you want to play games, use your change and buy an xbox 360

Pej
7th June 2007, 08:55 PM
Yep :)



Yep :)



I got my updated black macbook in a melbourne reseller edu price no worries 2 weeks ago.
(after 4 years of having a white one for school i had to change to black for sanity reasons - white reminded me too much of school work!! $200 well spent in my books!!!)

It is going sweet - no worries! still just 1gig ram - running aperture, parallels, photoshop and many other programs all at once with no hassels at all. cant wait to stick another gig in it to just for fun!


edit - original quote did not come out - it was about only being able to get edu discount online.

Pendulum
9th June 2007, 02:18 AM
same dilemmea here guys

I just purchased a base model white macbook for home, mostly for my wife but me too until I get a new laptop.


In all honesty, I'm so impressed by the macbook 2GHz. It outperforms my Dual 2.5Ghz G5 in many tasks, particularly in launching applications like photoshop and my audio software such as ableton. It feels snappier and more responsive too.

Im thinking of selling my G5, and buying myself a new machine... a laptop. I'll keep my G5's 20" cinema display and use that with the new laptop. But I dunno what laptop to get.

I love the small form factor of the macbook, but I hate that it can only go to 2GB RAM and has no decent graphics card.

I'm a designer/developer/music producer/all things digital kinda guy... and my G5 and previous powerbook had 1.5GB RAM.. so I guess 2GB isn't so bad if i went for a macbook. But i WOULD like to TRY some games in boot camp or even on OSX... unfortunately that integrated GPU from intel isn't so good for games...

Games aren't a HUGE issue tho. I have a 360.. and can just use that... Does a good graphics card make much difference with day to day use in the OS??? The white macbook i got my wife seems super snappy in the OS...

So really I'd need a maxed out macbook white, or a bottom end pro..

I think the REAL answer to our dilemma would be the rumored small form factor, 13.3" mac book pro... if/when it ever comes... I guess that would be same shape and size as a macbook, maybe thinner, but with a 2.4GHz CPU and at least 128MB graphics card... similar specs to the 15"er

meh... still undecided.

invigorated
10th June 2007, 01:25 AM
I have the middle core2duo macbook also and it's fantastic. I think the size is excellent for general use and carrying around. Far more practicle that my old 12 inch powerbook for actual use, but still small enough to be carried easily and set up pretty much anywhere.

If you going to be doing a lot of pro apps work though I'd really consider spending the extra cash and getting the macbook pro. The higher resolution of the displays would come in really handy for things like photoshop/illustrator/web design in my opinion, even though I don't really have any problems performing these tasks on the macbook.

Note: Someone mentioned games earlier - I can tell you that civ4 runs fine in XP under bootcamp but basically don't bank on playing any intesive 3d games because it's just not going to be that cool.

asphotos
10th June 2007, 02:53 PM
some interesting performance results

http://www.macworld.com/2007/06/firstlooks/mbpbench/index.php

in core tasks, the mb with 2gb ram isnt that far behind a new mbp 2.2..