13" screen - primary computer, viewing many hours a day

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by entatlrg, May 25, 2010.


13" notebook owners - the screen size

  1. 13" screen is fine, no need for larger

    31 vote(s)
  2. Often wish I had a larger 15/17" display

    14 vote(s)
  3. I have another laptop/desktop with larger screen

    15 vote(s)
  4. I plug into an external monitor when needed

    31 vote(s)
  1. entatlrg macrumors 68040


    Mar 2, 2009
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    For those who use a 13" notebooks as their main computer or many hours a day how do you find it?

    Do you feel the advantage of smaller size and lighter weight outweighs the smaller screen real estate / resolution?

    Is the screen size perfect or do you wish you'd went larger - 15/17"?

    Are you often plugging into an external 22/24" monitor?
  2. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    I've got a 13" MacBook Pro as my main computer, and I don't find it too small. I am eventually going ta get a 24" external screen though because I might like to use a bigger screen once in a while:D
  3. Jason Beck macrumors 68000

    Jason Beck

    Oct 19, 2009
    Cedar City, Utah
    I use one. I upgraded to an SSD and couldn't be happier. Has the snappiness of a fast drive for my design homework and the portability factor of the 13" design. I prefer the 13" design. I am plugged into my Acer 23" at home, and when I go out, the 13" doesn't cause much of a stir.

    Well unless someone is watching me boot and they haven't seen an SSD boot. : ) "How does it shut down and start so quick!?"

    An external monitor should be a *must have* item for anyone with a 13" notebook. Just makes it that much more useful when you are tethered at your desk. And the extra screen is good for putting itunes and IM on your MB and doing your main work on the big screen.
  4. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    How long does it take your 13" MacBook Pro to boot with its SSD?
  5. GadgetGeek71 macrumors 6502

    Mar 5, 2010
    Wherever I May Roam
    If I had to use my 13" all day, I would go nuts. As far as using it for a couple of hours with a break here and there, no problem.

    Now if I could just figure out how to put my 24" monitor in my notebook bag...:p
  6. nefan65 macrumors 65816


    Apr 15, 2009
    I use a 13" MB [Older White one] with a 20" external. Works fine. When I use a larger 15.4" screen on a different notebook, it feels odd now actually. I like the size, and portability. Just fits well overall...

  7. Sequin macrumors regular

    Mar 21, 2010
    Whenever I go to the library on campus I check out a Macbook and they only have the 13" ones. It's fine for just a few hours, but I can't imagine having such a small screen 24/7. I get annoyed by the itty bitty resolution within just those few hours of use.
  8. iPlatypus macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2010
    The Netherlands
    I own a MBP 13" 2010 and a Windows 7 rig w/ 20" monitor.

    Since I got this MBP roughly a week ago I haven't touched my Windows 7 box AT ALL. I'm used to 1680 x 1050 resolution, but I absolutely have NO problem with 1280 x 800. :D

    Things that I do at my MBP:
    • Browsing (Firefox)
    • Instant Messaging (Adium)
    • Programming and software development (Java in Eclipse, Flash CS5, Visual Studio in Boot Camp)
    • Word processing etc etc
    Unless you are going to require alot of workspace (Photoshop! ;) ) then imo 1280 x 800 is perfectly fine. For example yesterday I've been working (programming) at this notebook for 6 hours and the screen is awesome. Seriously, it's great!
  9. tim100 macrumors 65816

    May 25, 2009
    i dont hook up a notebook to an external monitor. i have a 27 imac and a 17 mbp. i will get a 13 inch for traveling around. a 13 is to small for a main machine.
  10. Agurri macrumors 6502


    May 8, 2005
    Québec, Canada
    I've been using my 13" white Macbook for the past 4 years as my primary computer for college. I use it for about 6 hours a day, and I read a lot on it. I find it to be juste perfect for my needs.

    Otherwise, I'm also using an external 17" CRT screen to add some space. It's really useful when I'm using Photoshop and InDesign. Other than that, it's just ... extra space.

    Since I have that extra space, I use it, but if I didn't have it ... I would also be happy... my desk would have actually more space... humm space :).
  11. alexbates macrumors 65816


    Nov 24, 2008
    Georgia, USA
    I have my MBP hooked up to a 25" LCD 70% of the time. I chose to purchase a 13" MBP + the LCD instead of a 15" or 17" MBP. It was really worth it! So I have 1080p resolution when I'm at home, and a much lighter weight and portable computer when away.
  12. jahala macrumors regular


    Feb 7, 2008
    laptop screen too low for working standing up

    I use my 13" macbook all day at work and in the evening at home. I stand at work and looking down at the laptop screen is hard on my neck, so I usually have an external LCD attached so I can get the monitor up to the correct height.

    At home, I am usually sitting when using the computer, so looking down at the screen is fine. I can use the laptop screen all day if sitting down without any problems.
  13. entatlrg thread starter macrumors 68040


    Mar 2, 2009
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    Need More Votes!!

    So far, about 75% of users prefer a screen larger than 13" for long hours of work, but that's only 39 votes.
  14. djwobble macrumors regular

    Jul 10, 2008
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    I am trying to sell my 15inch MBP in order to get the 13 inch. :)

    I find I'll hook up to a monitor if i need to use it for a long time. I need the lightweight and long battery life of the 13inch.
  15. tigress666 macrumors 68040

    Apr 14, 2010
    Washington State
    When I am home, it is plugged into my 21"(? somewhere around htere) monitor. When I am taking it with me places, the 13" screen is perfectly fine. Sure, the monitor is nicer but I don't find it all that annoying/frustrating at all to be stuck with the 13". In fact, there was a period of time even at home I was just using the screen on the laptop (new puppy training had me stuck in the living room away from my monitor). I don't really see the big need for a bigger screen. Might be a little bit nicer, but with 2" of difference, just a little bit and not enough imho to make up for the portability you lose (not just carrying it, but it fitting inside my backpack to take on the plane with me or it fitting nicely on the tray in front of me or it fitting nicely on the spare space at one of my jobs that lets me have my computer with me).

    And honestly, I'm at that job that allows me to have it with me for 10 hours when I'm there and I don't find that I'm wishing the screen was bigger.
  16. fitto13 macrumors member

    Feb 5, 2010
    I use mine with no external screen for about 2-6 hrs a day depending on how many lectures I have.

    It's perfect. All I'm doing in my lectures is taking notes. It's far more efficient than hand writing, plus it's neat :cool:

    IMO, it's great. Portability is the purpose of the thing. It doesn't take a lot of room up when you put it on the desk/carry it around. A few ppl have 17" laptops that they bring and they are MASSIVE on our lecture desks.

    I don't wish I got a bigger screen at all. Although, it's plugged into an external monitor 95% of the time it's at home. If I got a 15 or 17" I'd still have an external monitor.

    I plug mine into a 26" screen.

    I guess it depends on the kind of work you need it for. For me I don't do video editing/PS/engineering things on the go. If I want to edit a vid or whatever I normally do it at home when it's connected.

    I'll be doing this also. Powerful and portable :)
    Way to go IMO.


    I've used a 13" for about 2 weeks when I didn't have access to my montior. Writing essays, few spreadsheets
    No problems here.
  17. elpmas macrumors 68000


    Sep 9, 2009
    Where the fresh snow don't go.
  18. BeestieHalls macrumors member

    Mar 7, 2009
    Some people seem to be really nutty about not having a 13 inch screen and I gotta say, I don't get it at all.

    As a college student, it fits perfectly on desks, in my lap, and anywhere else I want to put it. Ive felt a 15 inch and its just a little bit too much.

    I guess because im mainly doing web browsing I'm not dying for a bigger screen, but in all honestly if I had to use a 15 inch all day long I think it would get tedious.
  19. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502


    May 21, 2009
    I really liked the compactness and portability of my 2.26GHz C2D 13". But I ended up trading up to a 15" i7. Two main reasons: Discrete GPU and higher pixel density.

    Apple sorta addressed the lackluster GPU with the 320M. In hindsight I may have been able to get by with that, but there's no option to get a 13" screen with a pixel density as close as the Hi-Res 15" or 17" models. The 17" seems a little too large, so that left the 15"
  20. kasakka macrumors 68020

    Oct 25, 2008
    To me an external monitor is a must. At home I plug into my 30" display, at work I use a 22" display. So I only use the laptop's own display during meetings etc. I bought the 13" because of portability and it is certainly more pleasant to carry around than the bigger ones. Even when I do use the laptop's display, it's big enough for most things.
  21. cys920622 macrumors member

    Feb 18, 2010
    I really need to get my hands on a mini-DVI adapter... looking down at the screen feels awkward after long use and i'd like the keyboard to be closer, but bringing the keyboard closer = looking down even more. I subconsciously end up with my face very close to the screen every now and then.
  22. Kahalu'u Bob macrumors 6502a

    Kahalu'u Bob

    Aug 9, 2007
    Had a 15" MBP, went to a new 13" w SSD for the portability. I like it! I don't miss the larger screen, and I like the lighter weight and smaller size of the 13". To each his or her own, I suppose.
  23. DesmoPilot macrumors 65816

    Feb 18, 2008
    Used a late '09 MacBook for a few months (My first 13" Laptop; owned a 15" PowerBook G4 and a 15" late '06 MBP before it); the size of the machine itself was fine. What annoyed me was the glossy screen and low 1280x800 resolution; if the resolution was higher and it had a matte screen I'd probably of kept it for a bit longer.

    As a main machine I could see a 13" MB/MBP being fine; with the occasional hook up to a proper external LCD monitor. Gaming would be totally out of the question though.
  24. Juno364 macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2010
    I agree with those who say it is hard to use a smaller laptop for longer periods. However, I love my 13" Macbook for its portability. If I were always sitting at a table for class a 15" would be nice, but I find myself using it everywhere but a desk!

    I am thinking of getting an ACD if a 27" version is announced. That would mean I can have dual 27" monitors at my desk or put the ACD in the kitchen for when my wife wants the laptop.
  25. tim100 macrumors 65816

    May 25, 2009
    i wonder if some people who would otherwise pick 13 got 15 for i5/i7, that would skew the poll

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