13" 2009 MBP, or (clearance) 15" 2008 MBP

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Remis, Oct 6, 2009.

  1. Remis macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2007
    Hi All,

    The time has come for me to go mobile, and obviously I'm going Macbook Pro (being a Mac convert for nearly 2 years!).

    If you don't feel like a story, skip to the last paragraph ;)

    My local apple store is running a special on old stock of 2008 MBP.
    They have a 15" model going for R16,000 (+- $2000). The specs are; 2.5Ghz, 2Gb Ram, 250GB HDD, 9600GT GFX). To put it in perspective; a 2009 version of this MBP will cost me R21,500 ($2700)

    My initial thought before I saw this special was to go for the base 13" MBP, R14,000 ($1750), which has these specs; 2.26Ghz, 2Gb Ram, 160Gb HDD, and 9400m GFX.

    Now according to my searching, the main differences between the 2008/9 models is the maximum ammount of RAM, and SD card slot. Both of which I can live with.
    I read some reviews that spoke of the new LCD's in the 2009 models being significantly better, but I'm unsure if they were compairing them (the new 2009 models) to Macbooks, 'pre-aluminum" MBPs, or 2008 MBPs.

    Now I'm a video editor, and the whole point of buying a MBP is so I can edit on the road. I know both of these models will handle HDV footage more than happily when bumped up to 4Gbs of RAM. However, I'm obviously concerned about LCD quality, if by buying the 13" Model I will get a significantly better screen.
    Once again, I do some After Effects works from time-to-time, so the better graphics card pushes me towards the 15" 2008 Model.

    So basically; will I be shooting myself in the foot by buying a year old MBP just to get a bigger screen and faster GFX? Or am I completely overthinking this, and by the time I need to upgrade, it'll be 5 years later and laptops will be running 8 cores? ;)

    Many thanks,
  2. theMaccer macrumors 6502a


    Oct 7, 2006
    The 2008 15'' uMBP has some pretty good screens. The bad screens are the ones in the uMBs'. I would go with the older 15'' because of the discrete video card and larger screen.
  3. Remis thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2007
    Thanks! :)
    Glad to have that cleared up...
    Now to just get the rest of the cash together:rolleyes:
  4. Mlrollin91 macrumors G5


    Nov 20, 2008
    Ventura County

    Also, Don't forget that the 2009 models have built in 7 hour battery with 1000 charge cycles. The 2008 runs on the older battery.
  5. allmIne macrumors 6502a


    Sep 17, 2008
    United Kingdom
    This can't be overstated; the new batteries are incredible. Really, really great performance.
  6. j5045096 Guest

    Oct 27, 2007
    I have a late 08 MBP and when the new ones came out and I saw the battery spec I was envious but the more I've thought about it (and I guess this has a lot to do with people's using habits) I can't think of a time I've needed 7 hours of power when I was away from a power source. It's not like Apple's power supplies are giant bricks anyway - even the MBP supply is small. I used to own Dell or Toshiba laptops with these giant bricks of a power supply but that was then, this is now. So yeah spec wise battery life on the newer ones is a plus, but if I had to do it all over again I'd still go with Late 08 because of the Express Card + 9600GT option.
  7. pukifloyd macrumors 6502a


    Jun 25, 2008
    buy a new 13 inch and get an external display:) new one is better than 08MBP...
  8. macrumorsMaster macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2008
    and your facts are??? :rolleyes:
  9. HBOC macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2008
    my MBP screen is just as good as my brothers' 13" MBP. Just trying to justify your purchase, eh?;)
  10. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    The 2009 model keynote stated that the new models have a increased color gamut over the older ones.

    You'll just have to decide which model has the features you want most at your price point.
  11. j5045096 Guest

    Oct 27, 2007
    I thought that only applied to the 13" (old unibody MacBook 13" vs new unibody MacBook Pro 13") - pretty sure nothing's changed on the 15" and 17"
  12. Jamo12 macrumors regular


    Mar 23, 2009
    I got the newest 15" MacBook pro (w/ sd card slot) with specks of 2.66 Ghz, 4 gigs of ram, 9600m GT w/ 256 MB of dedicated ram. It cost me $2,000 with a student discount, its new, has a faster graphics card, good warranty to start out at. Just get this if you are going to pay $2,000 on a laptop. And the screen has really good colors (as good as the 17 inch). And there is a matte option if you want
    EDIT: it has a 320 gig hard drive (5400 rpm)
  13. bass93 macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2009
    Get the 13" MBP. Install some extra RAM and get an external display. I have the 13" MBP and the 7 hour battery is amazing! The least I have ever gotten is about 5 1/2 hours, but I usually get at least 7 1/2 to 8 hours.

    My friend has the 15" MBP that you're looking at. My screen does look brighter than his.

    Also, if you get the 13" and it doesn't come with Snow Leopard, you can get it for $10 because the computer will be on the up-to-date program. If you get the older 15" (and I'm pretty sure it won't come with Snow Leopard) you will end up paying $30 to upgrade to Snow Leopard.

    I definitely suggest the 13" MBP.
  14. Sonicjay macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2008
    I sold my '08 15" to buy a 13" mbp, and am very happy with that decision. The unibody, the battery, the SD slot (love it), the keyboard who's markings can actually be read, vs the old clear on silver..
  15. Remis thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2007
    Thanks for all the feedback guys.

    I ended up going with the 15" Model. The GFX card was basically the selling point.

    You all had really good points, but unfortunately at R6000 saving, I was prepared to lose out on the battery (as even though this is for portability it will mainly run off mains) and the screen (because, as you pointed out, I can buy a better one), in exchange for the getter GFX card, which can't be upgraded in future...

    Who knows, maybe I made the wrong choice... but with Apple.. can you really go wrong? ;)

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