My College MacBook Pro -- Smart Or Not?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by bobber205, Apr 12, 2006.

  1. bobber205 macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #1
    Here's what I'm thinking about doing for my college laptop, the MacBook Pro! :D

    For my Software Engineering major for college (fortunately on the West Coast for jobs), I need to have laptop access to Windows XP.

    Up until Bootcamp, I had decided on biting the bullet and buying a PC. *shivers*

    Now with Bootcamp, I don't have to. I want to buy a MacBook Pro and I'm not sure on when to buy it... Here's my situation.

    Right now I work a parttime job at the local grocery store. I am lucky to bring in about 200 to 250 bucks a month. My dad will give me at least 700 dollars in graduation money he has in a college savings. I do not need to use that money to pay for tuitition because between scholarships I am getting a free ride.

    Right now I have 450 dollars in my account. I will have at least 600 come graduation. Maybe 100 more by the time we move on June 12, which involves a four day ride to Oregon.

    So that adds up to about 1300 guaranteed dollars. The Macbook I want to order in the lower-end model with the 1 Gig ram upgrade. I will get the education discount and the total will be, after taxes, 2050 dollars.

    So.. that leaves about 700 dollars. That money will come from whatever extra money that my dad is putting in my savings from now to graduation. The money estimates are conservative.

    When my family and I get to Oregon, I am going to get a fulltime job doing anything I get a fulltime job for, cruddy or otherwise. I would just LOVE to order my MacBook pro about the first week of May or so. That would give me till about August 5 or so till the 13 percent interest kicks in. If for some reason I have not been able to pay all of it by then, there shouldn't be much left.

    Here's my question. (thanks for reading the whole thing.)

    What should I do? Should I wait until I get to Oregon to orderand not have the laptop the extra time before I move?

    Thanks for any comments/suggestions!! :D
     
  2. FFTT macrumors 68030

    FFTT

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Location:
    A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
    #2
    The longer you wait, the better chance you'll have of being able to select
    from either the current 15" MBP, 13" WS MBP or MacBook
     
  3. bobber205 thread starter macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #3
    I'm sure I want the MacBook Pro.

    I'm not sure the MacBook (iBook) will be sufficient. Besides, I am willing to work a little harder and pay a little more for what the MacBook Pro would offer over the regular MacBook.
     
  4. OnceUGoMac macrumors 6502a

    OnceUGoMac

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2004
    #4
    I would recommend waiting until WWDC in August to see what products are offered. I would also recommend a Macbook (iBook). Apple tends to run back-to-school specials around that time as well. Good luck.

    edit: Saw your post on the Macbook Pro. Strike my previous comment.
     
  5. bodeh6 macrumors 6502a

    bodeh6

    Joined:
    May 18, 2005
    #5
    I would wait until at least the summer when they usually have a printer promo or the Jam and Cram promo.
     
  6. bobber205 thread starter macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
  7. student_trap macrumors 68000

    student_trap

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Location:
    'Ol Smokey, UK
    #7
    its an offer to students usually just as the autumn term starts, that gives a $200 coupon to claim back against an ipod if you buy a mac. A VERY good deal.

    effectively, apple give students a free ipod when they buy a mac
     
  8. TurboLag macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2004
    #8
    I agree, wait until the back to school promo. I am in the same situation, I am waiting to purchase a MacBook as soon as the promo hits. Does anyone know typically when Apple likes to announce their promos? July? August?
    Thanks.
     
  9. Whistleway macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2005
    #9
    I was torn like this when i was deciding between then, powerbook and ibook.

    From what i found out, ibook does its job quite capable for all my needs and most likely your needs too. And for college, that should be good to go. They don't just call it macbook PRO for just the name. Unless you are heavy into video editing etc, you would most likely get the best bang for buck from ibook, though macbook PRO looks cool etc, it is way too much powerful for what we do.

    you can always upgrade a couple of years after too, when you get to the third year or something.

    just my thoughts.
     
  10. Whistleway macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2005
    #10
    Last year it started end of july. That time it was free ipod mini and another offer for 100 bucks off printer (both mir which i got back sometime in october or so).
     
  11. nunzia macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2006
    Location:
    Arlington VA
    #11
    Have you looked into Apple's Financing plan? I did it when I bought my iBook and they gave me 4 months no interest... that helped a LOT
     
  12. count chocula macrumors 6502a

    count chocula

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2006
    Location:
    noun. a particular place or position
    #12
    i believe he plans on using the financing plan, he said he would have until august before the 13% interest kicks in
     
  13. bobber205 thread starter macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #13

    Yep. Guess I should have wrote that more clearly. Whoops.

    I am going to apply for my first credit card then. :D

    Whoo!

    Any suggestions for upgrades?
    I want to get the 1 Gig RAM upgrade for sure.
     
  14. saturnino3 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2005
    Location:
    Oakland, CA
    #14
    You should also monitor the Special Deals section for a Refurb MBP. I've seen the lower end models for $1,699 USD plus tax which would save you a pretty penny and still allow you to use Apple's finance deal. Refurbs have the same warranty and they are eligible for AppleCare.

    Good luck!:)
     
  15. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    LaLaLand, CA
    #15
    There's no sales tax in OR, so think about that. You have plenty of time. Save up for something nice.
     
  16. bobber205 thread starter macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #16
    You are correct good sir. I just got done checking and the deal is there.
    The only bad thing is you can't customize the machines though. (obviously).

    I want to be able to have a gig of RAM. That's important.
     
  17. Phatpat macrumors 6502a

    Phatpat

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2003
    Location:
    Washington DC
    #17
    Don't buy ram from Apple. You can handle the upgrade.
     
  18. MajereXYU macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    #18
    Don't you know the Apple RAM Rules?

    Rule #1 : NEVER get RAM upgrades from Apple.
    Rule #2 : NEVER get RAM upgrades from Apple.

    They just charge wayy too much...

    Best way to go about it :
    - Buy MacBook(Pro)
    - Sell included 512MB module for around $75
    - Buy 1GB module from 3rd party like Crucial or OWC for around $150.

    Then, when you want to upgrade to 2GB in 1-2years, you just buy another 1GB stick and put it in.

    Total cost? for 1GB total it will cost you about 1/2 of what apple charges for 2x512MB (2x512MB means you would have to sell both to upgrade to 2GB)
     
  19. bobber205 thread starter macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #19
    I have no experience installing anything in a computer...

    I don' want my first experience to be on my 2000 dollar laptop. ;)
     
  20. FFTT macrumors 68030

    FFTT

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Location:
    A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
    #20
    Unless you pay to have your RAM installed while you wait at the Apple Store, ordering a RAM upgrade through Apple will delay your shipment.

    You also pay double the normal retail price for the RAM.

    Installing a RAM card is one of the easiest things you can do.

    Even Apple qualifies RAM upgrades as a DIY process.
     
  21. sbb155 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2005
    #21
    this is crazy

    Learn how to save your money while you are young. Buy a PC laptop for $1000 or an new macbook when they come out, and save your money and you will have more long term happiness. If you don't have the money, then dont buy. Buying on credit is a stupid and wasteful thing to do, and a terrible habit to learn.
    Forget it. You will be able to buy/do/learn a lot more in life if you learn how to save money now.
    If you have the resources, get the MBP. But this is crazy.
     
  22. jimN macrumors 6502a

    jimN

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #22
    I don't agree. He seems to have budgeted pretty sensibly and is showing that he has the patience to save for something, however, he wants the product slightly before he can afford to get it. Credit can be a nightmare but if you are prudent before entering into any agreement then these things can be used to your advantage - i bought my laptop on an interest free period for the first year just before starting my job. I paid it off entirely over that period and had the computer several months before i would have been able to put down ready money for it. Used correctly credit can work - I think his plan sounds pretty well thought out.
     
  23. milo macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2003
    #23
    I'd save up your money until you have cash in hand for the whole thing.

    In the meantime, the macbook will probably be released and cost hundreds less. You're starting college in the fall, so you don't really need the computer until then.

    Debt sucks, don't get into it, especially when your income is as low as it is.
     
  24. erictheninja macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    #24
    Yes, do NOT buy RAM from Apple.

    Here's a tip I've learned from others...

    You may want to sign up as an Apple Student Developer. The cost of the program is $99 or so. The reason I suggest this is for two reasons. 1) you get a legitimate copy of all Apple updates for an entire year. 2) *** One time purchase of Apple hardware at discount ***.

    Now, I'm fully aware that you get a discount for being a full-time student, but the Student Developer Discount is FAR, FAR greater than the typical student discount even after paying the $99. I completely agree w/you on purchasing the MacBook Pro vs. just a MacBook. You're hoping to use this thing for 4 years and this'll get you through it far better than a MacBook.

    Here're the applicable links. Happy hunting:)
    Apple Student Developer Information

    Apple Student Developer One Time Hardware Purchase Information
     
  25. bobber205 thread starter macrumors 68020

    bobber205

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #25
    I'm signing up right now.
    Too bad I have to clean most of today. :D

    Ok. I do need to find my student number from OIT. That might be difficult. ;)

    So.. while I'm waiting, do you have any idea what the actual discount is for ADC student developers?

    The student discount is 10%.

    Surely the bigger discount can't be more than 40 can it?

    Because that would be freakin' hilarious.
     

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