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Old May 2, 2009, 07:19 PM   #1
Knolly
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The "Should I Get 2.0 or 2.4" Thread to End All "Should I Get 2.0 or 2.4" Threads

NOTE: If you already have a new Macbook, PLEASE read Step 4 and give me your input to help out this guide.

So there is a post by someone unsure of which Macbook to get more or less every 4 minutes. I am creating this thread in the hopes of:
1. Some people who are indecisive will see it for whenever it is on the first few pages (since I don't expect it to be stickied, obviously).
2. The small fraction of people who actually search before posting will see it.

Steps 1 and 2 are included for the sake of being thorough.

Anyhow, let's get to it...

Are you unsure whether to get...
- A Macbook or a Macbook Pro? -> Step 1
- A White Plastic or Aluminum Macbook? -> Skip to Step 2
- A 2.0 or 2.4 GHz Aluminum Macbook? -> Skip to Step 3

STEP 1: Macbook or Macbook Pro
Price Difference: $800 (Aluminum Macbook) - 1000 (Plastic Macbook) (Apple US Retail)

You are in the Macbook forum so I'm going to go on a limb and assume you're considering the Macbook more than the Pro, so I'll make this brief.

Macbook:
- Cheaper.
- Smaller and Lighter. As a college student who has owned both machines, the difference between the two is HUGE, despite on paper not seeming that large.

Macbook Pro:
- Power.
- Better screen.
- Firewire.

The question is always whether or not you need this power... The Macbook is perfectly acceptable for the majority of people. What the Pro excels in is 3D Graphics. If you work a lot in 3D, or an avid gamer who demands the highest settings on games, the Pro may be the way to go. It should be noted that the Macbook is CAPABLE of playing even the latest games (Latest example from my personal experience is FEAR 2: Project Origin), but it certainly won't look amazing. For anything processor related, such as encoding video, the Macbook is certainly capable of doing it, the Pro will just do it faster. The question is if that speed is worth the price to you.

As for the screen, the Macbook screen is by no means bad for a laptop, but it is far from great. The Macbook Pro's screen, however, definitely classifies as great.

And as for Firewire... Some people feel passionate about this, some do not, so it depends on which camp you fall into.

STEP 2: White or Aluminum?
Price Difference: $300 (Apple US Retail)

The white Macbook is NEARLY identical to the lower end aluminum Macbook in specs. This wasn't the case when the aluminum Macbook originally came out, but new buyers now have an extra option.

One large difference between the two is the trackpad. This tends to be a personal preference thing, as some people love the new trackpad and some wish they had a button right there. My best advice is to go into the Apple store and try out both of them. It should be noted that the button is not the only difference, as the white Macbook's trackpad is NOT capable of multitouch gestures (aside from two finger scrolling) like the aluminum Macbook's.

The benefits of the white Macbook and why you might want one:
- Price. Definitely price. The retail price of the plastic Macbook is $999, $300 less than the aluminum. They've been seen on sale for $799, a whopping $500 less than the aluminum.
- Nearly identical specs to their shinier cousins.
- Less glossy screen.
- Firewire 400.

The benefits to the Aluminum Macbook (2.0 for sake of comparison):
- Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but most people at least prefer the looks of the aluminum Macbook over the plastic.
- Build quality. The plastic Macbook has had some issues with cracking in various places. The aluminum machines are built like a rock, due to the unibody construction. It's not JUST a gimmick, it truly does help.
- Larger included hard drive (160gb vs 120gb).
- Faster memory (DDR3 vs DDR2).
- Resale value. Some people buy a laptop and intend to use it until it stops working. Mac users have a habit of wanting to upgrade. A lot. I am guilty of this myself, and despite knowing how stupid it is, I partake in it. While no one can say for sure, it is a fairly good conclusion that if you were to buy a plastic and aluminum Macbook today, in a year or two the resale value of the aluminum Macbook will be higher than the plastic, although whether or not it will be $300 higher is obviously uncertain.
- Marginally thinner.

Step 3: 2.0 or 2.4 GHz?
Price Difference: $300 (Apple US Retail)

What you get for the extra $300:
- Larger Hard Drive (250gb vs 160gb).
- Backlit Keyboard.
- Faster Processor (2.4GHz vs 2.0GHz).

So let's first put this out there: There is NOTHING that the 2.4GHz Macbook can do (other than have its keyboard glow) that the 2.0GHz Macbook cannot. The 2.4GHz machine is just capable of doing SOME things faster. To figure out which one is right for you, what kind of user are you?

Normal User:
Will use your computer for web surfing, watching media, writing documents, etc. You might need to convert video for your iPod or iPhone every once in awhile. Basically, you are a student, or at least have the computing needs of one.

Power User:
Will use computer for the needs of a normal user but will also be encoding plenty of audio or video or working heavily with Photoshop or similar applications.

If you are a Normal User:
- Is a backlit keyboard important enough to be worth $300?
- Do you plan to upgrade your computer in a year or two?

If you are a Power User:
- Is a backlit keyboard important enough to be worth $300?
- Do you encode enough video and audio for a roughly 10% increase in encoding time to be worth $300?
- Do you plan to upgrade your computer in a year or two?

Reaching your Conclusion:
If you answered "No" to all of the questions, a 2.0 GHz Macbook will serve you will.

If you answered "Yes" to ONLY the upgrading question, you may want to keep in mind that down the road, the resale value of a 2.4 will always be higher than a 2.0. It is impossible to guess how MUCH higher, as it might not even be the $300 difference higher, but it is still something to definitely keep in mind. Also, if you answered yes to this question, you may very likely have the need to have the latest and greatest, which will obviously steer you to the 2.4.

If you answered "Yes" to the keyboard question, I think I don't have to tell you which machine you should head for.

If you answered "Yes" to the encoding question, than the 2.4GHz is obviously your best bet.

Important Things to Keep in Mind - Why Everything That Wasn't a Question is Mostly Irrelevant:
You need to remember that the aluminum Macbooks' hard drives are very easily upgradeable. So while the 2.4GHz has a 250gb HD vs a 160gb HD, this is far from being worth $300, since you can go online and buy a 500gb hard drive to slap into your computer for under $100. The very best non-SSD hard drive that a notebook can have is the Seagate Momentus 500gb 7200rpm drive, which sells for about $130.

Also, the reason I did NOT classify something like Photoshop or virtualizing Windows under either user classification was while the processor will provide VERY marginal increases with these programs, upgrading your RAM will provide a HUGE improvement, and you can max out the Macbooks RAM at 4gb for around $60. So if you said no to everything but do plan on using Photoshop or something similar, a 2.0GHz with maxed out RAM is a far more prudent investment.

Step 4: The Step that isn't Actually a Step

Here is a part I will do my best to edit over time to expand upon. Basically, to anyone with a current machine, please tell me which machine you have, why you got it, and how happy with it you are, and I'll do my best to throw them all in this post.

Username: Knolly
Machine: 2.4GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: I do a lot of video encoding. While that alone wasn't worth the price difference in my opinion, it was a combination of that, the resale value factor (I plan to upgrade when USB 3.0 comes out in Macbooks), and my innate need to have the latest, greatest, and shiniest that eventually controlled my decision.
Verdict: Could not possibly be happier.

Username: ryan.hayes79
Machine: 2.0GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: Already got a 24" iMac and always wanted a Alu MacBook but was living with the Air as it was as close I could get at the 13" form factor. I got the 2.0GHz version as the store had just sold the last 2.4GHz. Only reason I wanted the higher spec was for the backlit keyboard that I liked the on the Air.
Verdict: Love the machine and looks awesome. Miss the quality of the Air display vs the MacBook.

Username: ChocolateJesus
Machine: 2.0GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: Upgrading from a 12" Rev. C PowerBook, I really was looking to get into another metal-encased Mac. I haven't looked back since buying my new Unibody. Unbelievably fast and cool-running, even with some gaming thrown in the mix. Very satisfied.

Username: fifthroot
Machine: 2.0 GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: Media developer, needed portability. Have a 24" monitor so didn't want a desktop. Was going to get a whitebook, but saw a 2.0 refurb so snatched it up. Didn't care about memory or hard drive, fully intended to upgrade both as soon as I bought. Running 4 gigs RAM and a 320 gig 7200 rpm HD. I use Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, After Effects, Flash, etc. and this thing does not break a sweat. 2.4 could only provide me with a lighted keyboard and didn't care for that....so, a decked-out 2.0 was perfect for me. I also have 3 external drives I use for backup and media storage. Used a buddy's Macbook Pro for a while and can live fine without the extra power.
Verdict: Keeping this sucker along with my 2001 Corolla until they both are driven into the ground and they die on me.

Username: themintyness
Machine: 2.0 GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: I'm a soon-to-be college graduate...I actually have been using Dells for a while, but when I was little, I've used Macs both at school and at home. My dad loves Macs. I actually bought a Dell the night before I got a Mac, and I ended up getting a Mac the morning after at my school because the Dell froze up on me before I even took it home from Best Buy. My school was having a bunch of school promos, so I was saving more money than with the usual education discount, plus it was my last time to be able to use the discount in my own name. I was hoping to be able to walk out with the computer in hand but they were sold out of the 2.0 GHz which is what I was hoping to get. They didn't have the white ones in stock either but they did have the 2.4 GHz one on hand but I didn't feel like I needed it to do. I'm pretty much a textbook normal user...pictures, music, movies, tv, internet, microsoft office. I really did like the sweet backlit keyboard but it wasn't enough to make me get it. My parents are going to pay for the computer, too, so I felt kind of bad that they were paying so much (I got the 2.0 GHz aluminum macbook, the extended AppleCare, Microsoft office software, a couple accessories)...it ended up being more than the price of the 2.4 GHz macbook, but these were accessories that I need. Still waiting for mine to arrive to the school store, I paid a deposit for it on this recent Wednesday so it's supposed to arrive next week but I can't wait! I'm never going back to PCs again.

Username: Tongteh
Machine: 2.4 GHz Aluminum Macbook(upgraded to 4gb ram)
Reasoning: mainly because of the beauty and the speed, my thoughts was if i were to get a macbook, why not the best of its kind.
Verdict: love it but slowly finding more problems with it, like screen(9C89), response rates and etc.

Username: harry20larry
Machine: 2.0 GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: I am still at college so I do not have loads of money. Read here and most people said that 2.0GHz was enough fir everything I needed. The breaking point was when my mum's friend who worked at John Lewis got a return because of a tiny imperfection on the bottom, meaning that I could buy it for £400.
Verdict: It has been nearly perfect so far, a few tiny hiccups though. For example, if you want to edit movies at 720p in imovie and you don't have a steady hand, you might want to invest in an upgrade, Stabilization takes up sooo much CPU and I experienced major lags. However, the build quality of this laptop is the best, multi-touch glass track pad is a killer and when I look at the plastic macbooks at school they seem lie second rate products.The first thing I would update in my macbook is its ram, as apparently that has a huge performance boost.

Username: anotherarunan
Machine: 2.2 (previous gen) santa rosa macbook (white), 2.5gb ram
Reasons etc: Absolutely love it, being a university student, the size factor is very useful, can fit in most bags and take to the library whenever needed, and when watching movies etc - i hook it up to a bigger display i have in my room anyway so the screen size works is never a problem. have never felt like i dont have enough processing power, but because i run windows in fusion a lot - i do feel i need to upgrade to 4gbs of RAM soon, and also will upgrade my hard drive to either a 320gb or 500gb!

Username: scienide09
Machine: 2.0GHz aluminium MacBook
Rationale: This MB was purchased shortly after their release, and my wife and I had been waiting for updates before buying. For us, the price difference did not warrant the small gain in processor, drive space, and a few LEDs behind the keyboard. Plus, I'm comfortable enough with technology that swapping the drive will be no issue if and when I'm inclined. I fall somewhere between your normal user and power user categories, and my wife is at the same level. We already own an MBP, and use that do do our heavy lifting (XP in Fusion, video work, etc.). We battle over the MacBook depending on who needs greater portability. The rest of the time, I use whichever computer is free or has my files.
Verdict: The chosen MB does exactly what I need, when I want it to, and I like the aluminium construction over the polycarb of the white models. I'm happy.

Username: Alvin.C
Machine: 2.0GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: As a University student, after going through 6 consecutive purchases of laptop PCs, I decided to jump on the bandwagon, and settle on a Macbook. I didn't think that it was worth the extra money for an increase of 400MHz and inclusion of a backlit keyboard. I did however, think it was worth the money to go for an aluminium Macbook as opposed to the white polycarbonate, due to the reduction of weight & size, faster RAM and vastly improved build quality. To add, one of my deciding factors for buying a Macbook was the fact that they came with Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics, of which all Macbook models come with. So, Nvidia GeForce 9400M and 2.0GHz more than satisfies my needs as a uni student.
Verdict: No more switching from one laptop PC to another. My Macbook is here to stay, for good .

User: Calmin
Machine: 2.4ghz MacBook Alu
Reasoning: I had been looking to update my 12" Aluminum Powerbook forever. I did not want a plastic case which ruled out the Macbook line for a long time. The MB Pro were only available in 15 or 17-inch and too big/heavy compared to a 12" Powerbook, so I ended up buying an Air when they came out. As much as I liked the Air, there were too many compromises for all the stuff I do. It quickly felt restrictive. So when the Macbook Alu was released, I ditched the Air on eBay and got the 2.4.
Keyboard: I went for the pricey machine almost exclusively because of the backlit keys. I do some of my computing late at night and got used to MacBook Air's nicely lit keyboard. To get to a machine without it would have been a step back.
CPU: The CPU speed increase is irrelevant right now. I use my iMac for heavy-lifting task, even though the MacBook is similarly powered.
Hard drive: Nice to have as much space on a portable. The Air's 80gb was quickly filled with media and a boot camp partition. Upgradeability is a huge plus. I upgraded the drive on my Powerbook and it put hairs on my chest...
Display: My only peeves with this machine is the display. It's too shiny. The Air had a glossy screen, but it was somehow less reflective. The viewing angle was better on the Air too. However, these are things I can live with.
Trackpad: This is awesome. Gestures fit naturally into my computing patterns and it feels like a step backward to use a mouse. The white MacBook has a smaller pad with separate button. Definitely a negative imo.
Conclusion: The unibody MacBook looks set to be one of the Classic Mac designs. I can see me keeping this machine for a long time to come. It's fast, powerful, upgradeable. It will hopefully run Snow Leopard beautifully.

Username: Mantronix
Machine: 2.4 GHz Aluminum Macbook(will upgrade to 4gb of ram)
Reasoning: The backlit keyboard and a larger harddrive. I currently own a 5 year old Dell Inspiron 600m craptop that will die any day. I'm currently going back to college and I needed a better laptop. Burning the midnight oil studying/typing papers with a backlit keyboard makes a huge difference, especially in bed and not disturb the girlfriend while she's sleeping. I'm not the best typist in the world so I have to look at the keyboard sometimes. Plus with my job I'm in a dark environment so it helps me out.
Verdict: lf I did not own a 24" iMac I would of bought the 15" macbook pro. The fact of no longer needing to switch from my iMac to a laptop is a thing of the past. Plus the of power of portability is too good to pass up. My macbook does everything I need it to do plus more and I have no second doubts buying one.

Username: tristangage
Machine: 2.0 GHz White nVidia Macbook
Reasoning: Needed an upgrade desperately from a nine year old machine, for College (sixth form) is beginning in September and am taking a Graphic Design course. Aluminium upgrade wasn't worth the money, since this baby runs Photoshop without a struggle, and once I upgrade to 4GB of RAM I'll have no trouble with anything that I use. 120GB hard drive was no problem, since I have a 500GB external. If, for any reason, I desperately need more power, I can use my father's Macbook Pro.
Verdict: More happy than is possibly possible, wouldn't trade this in for anything. Will upgrade in two years if I go to university, as I'll get the money back from this to go towards the upgrade. Well worth the money, this was.

User Opinions Are Continued in This Post

Last edited by Knolly; May 3, 2009 at 07:28 PM.
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Old May 2, 2009, 07:41 PM   #2
ryan.hayes79
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Here ya go!

Username: ryan.hayes79
Machine: 2.0GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: Already got a 24" iMac and always wanted a Alu MacBook but was living with the Air as it was as close I could get at the 13" form factor. I got the 2.0GHz version as the store had just sold the last 2.4GHz. Only reason I wanted the higher spec was for the backlit keyboard that I liked the on the Air.
Verdict: Love the machine and looks awesome. Miss the quality of the Air display vs the MacBook.
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Old May 2, 2009, 07:49 PM   #3
Knolly
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@ryan:
Thanks! Also, thanks for reminding me about the screen... The Macbook VS Macbook Pro is meant to be really brief as this guide is meant to only be for selecting Macbooks, but the screen definitely is worth noting.
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Old May 2, 2009, 08:43 PM   #4
PolySciSurfer
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Awesome post Knolly, thanks for the help man!
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Old May 2, 2009, 08:51 PM   #5
silverblack
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Bravo!!!

Now we just need another post like this to end the "I dropped my Macbook" threads.
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Old May 2, 2009, 10:31 PM   #6
Knolly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverblack View Post
Bravo!!!

Now we just need another post like this to end the "I dropped my Macbook" threads.
Title: The "I Dropped My Macbook" Thread to End All "I Dropped My Macbook" Threads
Post: That sucks.

:P

But thanks guys!
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Old May 2, 2009, 10:51 PM   #7
J&JPolangin
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Location: Japan...at the waters edge...
...what about a "wait and see what speed bumps and HDD upgrades happen with the refresh" section
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Old May 2, 2009, 11:35 PM   #8
fifthroot
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Username: fifthroot
Machine: 2.0 GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: Media developer, needed portability. Have a 24" monitor so didn't want a desktop. Was going to get a whitebook, but saw a 2.0 refurb so snatched it up. Didn't care about memory or hard drive, fully intended to upgrade both as soon as I bought. Running 4 gigs RAM and a 320 gig 7200 rpm HD. I use Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, After Effects, Flash, etc. and this thing does not break a sweat. 2.4 could only provide me with a lighted keyboard and didn't care for that....so, a decked-out 2.0 was perfect for me. I also have 3 external drives I use for backup and media storage. Used a buddy's Macbook Pro for a while and can live fine without the extra power.
Verdict: Keeping this sucker along with my 2001 Corolla until they both are driven into the ground and they die on me.
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Old May 3, 2009, 12:22 AM   #9
ColinEC
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Thanks a LOT for this thread, great job - reading now.

Edit:

I couldn't decide between a MacBook or MacBook Pro. I've pretty much settled on a MacBook Pro after this, thanks a lot!

Now... 2.4 or 2.66 :P (most likely will go with 2.66GHz due to cache size, RAM, HD, etc - will buy refurbished).

Last edited by ColinEC; May 3, 2009 at 12:36 AM.
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Old May 3, 2009, 12:31 AM   #10
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You forgot to even mention FW as a plus for MBPs, one of their most important features. Very good guide, just need one on the MBP forum Will you update this at the next refresh? Helped me decide which MB I would get if I was getting one soon: 2.4GHz refurb! I want the keyboard, possibly longer OS support(800MHz G4s are just 67MHz away from leopard, just think what 400MHz might get!), faster encoding, ect. ect. I'm waiting for Arrandale and a screen I can tolerate though. Long wait.
SG
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Old May 3, 2009, 01:26 AM   #11
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username: themintyness
machine: 2.0 GHz Aluminum Macbook
reasoning: I actually have been using Dells for a while, but when I was little, I've used Macs both at school and at home. My dad loves Macs. I actually bought a Dell the night before I got a Mac, and I ended up getting a Mac the morning after at my school because the Dell froze up on me before I even took it home from Best Buy. I was hoping to be able to walk out with the computer in hand but they were sold out of the 2.0 GHz which is what I was hoping to get. They didn't have the white ones in stock either but they did have the 2.4 GHz one on hand but I didn't feel like I needed it to do. I'm pretty much a textbook normal user...pictures, music, movies, tv, internet, microsoft office. I really did like the sweet backlit keyboard but it wasn't enough to make me get it. My parents are going to pay for the computer, too, so I felt kind of bad that they were paying so much (I got the 2.0 GHz aluminum macbook, the extended AppleCare, Microsoft office software, a couple accessories)...it ended up being more than the price of the 2.4 GHz macbook, but these were accessories that I need. Still waiting for mine to arrive to the store, I paid a deposit for it on this recent Wednesday so it's supposed to arrive next week but I can't wait! I'm never going back to PCs again.

Last edited by themintyness; May 5, 2009 at 03:19 PM. Reason: deleted last line that i forgot to delete in original post
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Old May 3, 2009, 01:47 AM   #12
tongteh
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Username: Tongteh
Machine: 2.4 GHz Aluminum Macbook(upgraded to 4gb ram)
Reasoning: mainly because of the beauty and the speed, my thoughts was if i were to get a macbook, why not the best of its kind.
Verdict: love it but slowly finding more problems with it, like screen(9C89), response rates and etc.

first 2.4ghz after the OP.. :P
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Old May 3, 2009, 03:06 AM   #13
Knolly
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Thanks to everyone for their input!

Quote:
Originally Posted by J&JPolangin View Post
...what about a "wait and see what speed bumps and HDD upgrades happen with the refresh" section
Oh god... Once I start doing that I'll end up making it a complete buying guide, and knowing me it would end up being WAY too big for one thread, haha.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ColinEC View Post
Thanks a LOT for this thread, great job - reading now.

Edit:

I couldn't decide between a MacBook or MacBook Pro. I've pretty much settled on a MacBook Pro after this, thanks a lot!

Now... 2.4 or 2.66 :P (most likely will go with 2.66GHz due to cache size, RAM, HD, etc - will buy refurbished).
Glad to help! And yeah, I'll probably give it a refresh with the refresh. :P

Enjoy your MBP when you get it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaperMacWriter View Post
You forgot to even mention FW as a plus for MBPs, one of their most important features. Very good guide, just need one on the MBP forum Will you update this at the next refresh? Helped me decide which MB I would get if I was getting one soon: 2.4GHz refurb! I want the keyboard, possibly longer OS support(800MHz G4s are just 67MHz away from leopard, just think what 400MHz might get!), faster encoding, ect. ect. I'm waiting for Arrandale and a screen I can tolerate though. Long wait.
SG
Many thanks on the firewire, I completely forgot about it... ><

I might draft up one for the MBP's if it really is in demand... We'll see. I certainly COULD do it, it'd just be with a bit less authority since I only have a Macbook, haha. And yep, I'll update the thread with the refresh! I'm definitely with you on hoping for a better screen.
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Old May 3, 2009, 03:17 AM   #14
199708
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.... So should i get the 2.0 or 2.4?
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Old May 3, 2009, 03:18 AM   #15
SPEEDwithJJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaperMacWriter View Post
I'm waiting for Arrandale and a screen I can tolerate though. Long wait.
SG
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knolly View Post
I'm definitely with you on hoping for a better screen.
Apple is already shipping out "MBP-like" quality screens with the latest MBs according to the following thread:

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=694320
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Old May 3, 2009, 04:50 AM   #16
harry20larry
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Username: harry20larry
Machine: 2.0 GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: I am still at college so I do not have loads of money. Read here and most people said that 2.0GHz was enough fir everything I needed. The breaking point was when my mum's friend who worked at John Lewis got a return because of a tiny imperfection on the bottom, meaning that I could buy it for £400.
Verdict: It has been nearly perfect so far, a few tiny hiccups though. For example, if you want to edit movies at 720p in imovie and you don't have a steady hand, you might want to invest in an upgrade, Stabilization takes up sooo much CPU and I experienced major lags. However, the build quality of this laptop is the best, multi-touch glass track pad is a killer and when I look at the plastic macbooks at school they seem lie second rate products.The first thing I would update in my macbook is its ram, as apparently that has a huge performance boost.

Also: add to the comparison between the white and alu the trackpad, because it does make a huge difference
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Old May 3, 2009, 08:07 AM   #17
anotherarunan
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Username - anotherarunan
Machine - 2.2 (previous gen) santa rosa macbook (white), 2.5gb ram
Reasons etc - Absolutely love it, being a university student, the size factor is very useful, can fit in most bags and take to the library whenever needed, and when watching movies etc - i hook it up to a bigger display i have in my room anyway so the screen size works is never a problem. have never felt like i dont have enough processing power, but because i run windows in fusion a lot - i do feel i need to upgrade to 4gbs of RAM soon, and also will upgrade my hard drive to either a 320gb or 500gb!
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Old May 3, 2009, 10:42 AM   #18
scienide09
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Canada
Username: scienide09
Machine: 2.0GHz aluminium MacBook
Rationale: This MB was purchased shortly after their release, and my wife and I had been waiting for updates before buying. For us, the price difference did not warrant the small gain in processor, drive space, and a few LEDs behind the keyboard. Plus, I'm comfortable enough with technology that swapping the drive will be no issue if and when I'm inclined. I fall somewhere between your normal user and power user categories, and my wife is at the same level. We already own an MBP, and use that do do our heavy lifting (XP in Fusion, video work, etc.). We battle over the MacBook depending on who needs greater portability. The rest of the time, I use whichever computer is free or has my files.
Verdict: The chosen MB does exactly what I need, when I want it to, and I like the aluminium construction over the polycarb of the white models. I'm happy.
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Old May 3, 2009, 11:41 AM   #19
Alvin.C
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I think someone should post a thread to end all of the 'should I get 2.0 or 2.4' threads to end all 'should I get 2.0 or 2.4' threads. Just kidding.

Username: Alvin.C
Machine: 2.0GHz Aluminum Macbook
Reasoning: As a University student, after going through 6 consecutive purchases of laptop PCs, I decided to jump on the bandwagon, and settle on a Macbook. I didn't think that it was worth the extra money for an increase of 400MHz and inclusion of a backlit keyboard. I did however, think it was worth the money to go for an aluminium Macbook as opposed to the white polycarbonate, due to the reduction of weight & size, faster RAM and vastly improved build quality. To add, one of my deciding factors for buying a Macbook was the fact that they came with Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics, of which all Macbook models come with. So, Nvidia GeForce 9400M and 2.0GHz more than satisfies my needs as a uni student.
Verdict: No more switching from one laptop PC to another. My Macbook is here to stay, for good .
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Old May 3, 2009, 11:54 AM   #20
CalMin
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Great thread.

User: Calmin
Machine - 2.4ghz MacBook Alu
Reasoning - I had been looking to update my 12" Aluminum Powerbook forever. I did not want a plastic case which ruled out the Macbook line for a long time. The MB Pro were only available in 15 or 17-inch and too big/heavy compared to a 12" Powerbook, so I ended up buying an Air when they came out. As much as I liked the Air, there were too many compromises for all the stuff I do. It quickly felt restrictive. So when the Macbook Alu was released, I ditched the Air on eBay and got the 2.4.

Keyboard - I went for the pricey machine almost exclusively because of the backlit keys. I do some of my computing late at night and got used to MacBook Air's nicely lit keyboard. To get to a machine without it would have been a step back.

CPU - The CPU speed increase is irrelevant right now. I use my iMac for heavy-lifting task, even though the MacBook is similarly powered.

Hard drive - Nice to have as much space on a portable. The Air's 80gb was quickly filled with media and a boot camp partition. Upgradeability is a huge plus. I upgraded the drive on my Powerbook and it put hairs on my chest...

Display - My only peeves with this machine is the display. It's too shiny. The Air had a glossy screen, but it was somehow less reflective. The viewing angle was better on the Air too. However, these are things I can live with.

Trackpad - This is awesome. Gestures fit naturally into my computing patterns and it feels like a step backward to use a mouse. The white MacBook has a smaller pad with separate button. Definitely a negative imo.
--
The unibody MacBook looks set to be one of the Classic Mac designs. I can see me keeping this machine for a long time to come. It's fast, powerful, upgradeable. It will hopefully run Snow Leopard beautifully.
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Old May 3, 2009, 04:28 PM   #21
MrZebra
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that's a good idea, this should be sticky!
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Old May 3, 2009, 05:15 PM   #22
Germwise
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What if your are buying refurb?

Then its a 200 dollar difference.

chip upgrade, bigger HD and backlit keys for 200... Doesn't sound like too bad of a deal to me.

but then again, I like shiny things
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Old May 3, 2009, 05:25 PM   #23
Mantronix
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Location: Louisiana
Username: Mantronix

Machine: 2.4 GHz Aluminum Macbook(will upgrade to 4gb of ram)

Reasoning: The backlit keyboard and a larger harddrive. I currently own a 5 year old Dell Inspiron 600m craptop that will die any day. I'm currently going back to college and I needed a better laptop. Burning the midnight oil studying/typing papers with a backlit keyboard makes a huge difference, especially in bed and not disturb the girlfriend while she's sleeping. I'm not the best typist in the world so I have to look at the keyboard sometimes. Plus with my job I'm in a dark environment so it helps me out.

Verdict: lf I did not own a 24" iMac I would of bought the 15" macbook pro. The fact of no longer needing to switch from my iMac to a laptop is a thing of the past. Plus the of power of portability is too good to pass up. My macbook does everything I need it to do plus more and I have no second doubts buying one.
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Old May 3, 2009, 05:59 PM   #24
andalusia
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Manchester, UK
Username: tristangage

Machine: 2.0 GHz White nVidia Macbook

Reasoning: Needed an upgrade desperately from a nine year old machine, for College (sixth form) is beginning in September and am taking a Graphic Design course. Aluminium upgrade wasn't worth the money, since this baby runs Photoshop without a struggle, and once I upgrade to 4GB of RAM I'll have no trouble with anything that I use. 120GB hard drive was no problem, since I have a 500GB external. If, for any reason, I desperately need more power, I can use my father's Macbook Pro.

Verdict: More happy than is possibly possible, wouldn't trade this in for anything. Will upgrade in two years if I go to university, as I'll get the money back from this to go towards the upgrade. Well worth the money, this was.
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Old May 3, 2009, 06:15 PM   #25
SPEEDwithJJ
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Username: SPEEDwithJJ

Machine: 2.0GHz Aluminum Macbook

Reasoning: Bought it to be a backup system to my Sony Vaio notebook. It is also bought because I wanted to try out & get myself familiarize with the Mac OS X operating system. Chose the base Alu MB because it is sturdy & also the cheapest Apple MB that is made of aluminum. This thing is a beauty & everything is great, except the screen. I also regret not getting the 2.4GHz model just for the backlit keyboard.

Verdict: Got this MB at the end of March. Now, I found out that Apple have supposedly started to use a higher grade screen in the MB. I'm not too pleased about that but unfortunately, I'm already pass the return date that I'm entitled to so I'm SOL. I will sell this MB after I'm done with my exams in 2 weeks & once it is sold, I'll be trying my luck & buying a 2.4GHz Alu MB to replace it.
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