Buying a Mac

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by xc runner, Jan 2, 2009.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    #1
    Hi,

    I'm new to the forums here and to Mac computers. I've had a HP laptop for school and it worked fine the first year then this past year I had a lot problems with it. I didn't have it for the first two months of school as HP never fixed the problem (nor even with an extended warranty give me a new computer). I had another separate problem with it this past month and I'm sick of dealing with them. So I've decided to buy a Mac with all my classmates and friends satisfied with their Macs. Now I'm probably going to stick out this semester with my old laptop and will wait for the back to school discounts and specials they run. I'm leaning between these

    2.4 GHz aluminum 13-inch MacBook with 4GB RAM
    or
    2.4 GHz 15-inch MacBook Pro

    Now I'm not really big into gaming on a laptop or computer in general so I'm not completely sure about the MacBook Pro. I really use my computer for writing papers and using the internet. I also like smaller more portable computers that's why I'm leaning more towards the MacBook. But I would appreciate so input from other owners.

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #2
    Get a MacBook, don't buy the RAM from Apple; get it from OWC.
     
  3. macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #3
    If you're fine with smaller laptops and not into gaming then go with the MacBook and save the rest of the money. The MacBook is a fine computer :)
     
  4. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    #4
    Now the installing the RAM. How difficult is that? I don't think I would have a hard time seeing that I've worked on my sister's older computer before but that wasn't a Mac.
     
  5. macrumors 68040

    IgnatiusTheKing

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2007
    Location:
    das Fort
    #5
    Yes and yes. Get a MacBook.

    It's very easy. Here's a link.
     
  6. macrumors 604

    zap2

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2005
    Location:
    Washington D.C
    #6
    Quite easy from my understanding, basically just pop it in(it has an easy access slot for HDD and RAM)
     
  7. macrumors 601

    themoonisdown09

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2007
    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #7
  8. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    #8
    Thank you all for the help! I have on more question. Do you think that they'll have another update by fall (not major)? I know its hard to tell but it looks like apple tries to update their Macbook twice a year. I've seen they have been working to release snow leopard.
     
  9. macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #9
    Not for a while, they were just updated in October.
     
  10. macrumors 601

    themoonisdown09

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2007
    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #10
    They could possibly get updated in the spring (March/April), but I highly doubt it.
     
  11. macrumors member

    mynameisadam

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2009
    #11
    the only update thats major iv seen is the graphics card update with october 2008 models, and they replaced all laptops that were faulty also with software updates its free so you wont have to worry about that.
     
  12. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    #12
    Get the MacBook. Say goodbye to windows!
     
  13. macrumors 68040

    IgnatiusTheKing

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2007
    Location:
    das Fort
    #13
    I would guess any MacBook update would come after the back-to-school deals expire and before the Christmas season really ramps up.
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    nope7308

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #14
    Based on your comments, and the fact that you're a student, I would recommend the base 2.0Ghz MacBook.

    If you use the machine primarily for internet and word processing, then anything above the 2.0Ghz model is overkill, IMO. Although more RAM is usually a good idea, 2GB is more than enough for your needs. I sincerely doubt you would need (or notice) the slightly faster CPU and bigger HD on the 2.4Ghz model. The only thing you would be missing with the 2.0Ghz model would be the backlit keyboard... you can always upgrade the RAM at a later date (that is, if you even need to - I doubt you would).

    Personally, I would buy the 2.0Ghz model and put in a 200GB 7200rpm HD ($70ish). That would give you tons of space and the faster HD will noticeably improve the snapiness/response time of the computer. Additionally, you could also buy a 2.5" HD enclosure for $15-$20 and have an external HD (an absolute must for any student). Replacing the HD, throwing together an external HD, and upgrading the RAM is super easy.

    Keep in mind that you should be saving as much money as possible - being a student is not cheap. You should buy according to your needs and you should also understand that the 2.4Ghz model will not last any longer than the 2.0Ghz model. Both computers will be obsolete at the exact same time.

    Good luck with the decision!
     
  15. macrumors G5

    jav6454

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #15
    Get a MacBook. Its more portable, lighter and sturdier.

    I went from an HP dv1660se to a 2.4GHz Al MacBook. Love it. The nVidia graphics chip will handle most games you throw at it, if you ever want to play a game. Great boost in everything. Also, RAM, get it from NewEgg, its now cheaper than Apple's.
     
  16. macrumors 6502

    Tinknock71

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2008
    Location:
    Westland Michigan
    #16
    I would say just get the Macbook, its more of a computer then you think! I have the 2.4 and love it especially the light up keyboard!
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2008
    #17
    I'm happy with my 2.4 Macbook. It is a perfect size for slinging in a backpack to take to classes (although I would recommend a backpack designed for laptops that has padding.) The MBP is pretty good. You can't go wrong with either selection.

    I also would recommend two accessories as well as the backpack.

    The first is an external hard disk that you can plug in when you get home for Time Machine, so if something happens, you can at least recover to the last time you had it backed up... this is especially important for term papers and such. You can also use the iDisk that comes with me.com, but its best use is for syncing when you have a constant wireless connection, and a lot of universities only have a few areas where one can get this.

    The second is a Kensington MicroSaver DS lock. There are times when you are on campus in the library, and have to leave your table. Having one of these locks allows you to just lock the screen of your Mac, lock the Mac to the table, run off and have an excellent that your Mac will be there when you return.
     
  18. macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

    Joined:
    May 27, 2006
    #18
    The 2.4GHz MacBook is one of the worst value for money products Apple currently sells. You could save a significant amount of money by buying the 2.0GHz model, which benchmarks have proven is only marginally slower than the 2.4GHz model.
     
  19. macrumors 68040

    VSMacOne

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2008
    #19
    Oh come on, we're only talking about a $300 difference... For that you get lit keys, HDD space, and 400 Mhz. I don't think it's THAT bad of a price increase for those things...

    To the OP .. Obviously I chose the 2.4 MB. The MBP wasn't even an option for me simply because of the 15" screen. I switched from a 15" Toshiba Sattelite and it wasn't any trouble adjusting to a 13" screen. I now have more mobility than with my Toshiba..
     

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