15" vs. 17" - Current Owners, What do you think?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by scott9s, Feb 27, 2008.

  1. scott9s macrumors member

    Feb 27, 2008
    So, my current (ready to throw out the window) laptop is 15" and 6.2 lbs.

    I love screen real estate.

    I'm thinking a 15" or a 17" 1920 x 1200 Hi Resolution. the thought of having two windows side by side on the same screen seems so alluring. I take my laptop back and forth from home to work. That's about it. However, I do use my current laptop on all over the home. My wife has a 15" MBP, and I use it and love it. I just wonder if the 2" more of the 17" is really that bulky and worth the extra $$.

    If you have a MBP,

    Why did you get the 15" or 17"?

    Do you wish you had a different choice?

    Is the 17" really too bulky to carry around?

    So, Vote: What do you think 15" vs 17" in a cage match? What wins and why?
  2. Viper2005 macrumors 6502


    Dec 2, 2007
    I have a 15" MBP, but I was hoping to get a 17" MBP if they made the standard screen LED backlit in this update, which they didn't.. so I'm going to be stuck with my 15" for a while, as I won't accept a non-LED backlit screen, and the 1920x1200 is too high res for me. Another reason is that I do some gaming on the MBP, and I know that the 8600GT would simply choke on a resolution of 1920x1200.
    I do admit, I did like the 1920x1200 of my Dell XPS, and having all that screen real estate was a treat..
    But hey, if you don't mind the extra 1.5 pounds of weight and size, and if you don't game much, get the 17" high res.
  3. MacDann macrumors 6502a


    Mar 27, 2007
    Can see the end of the Earth from here
    I had a loaned 17" MBP for a few days, and compared to my 15" MBP, I did like the additional screen real estate, but it was significantly larger and heavier compared to the 15".

    Given that, if I was planning on having to lug a machine around on a regular basis, I would stick with the 15". If transporting it wasn't an issue, I would opt for the 17".

    The 15" is far better suited to be carried around, IMHO. As a part time road warrior, I wouldn't want it.

  4. Batt macrumors 65816


    Dec 17, 2007
    Syracuse, NY
    I bought the 17" for the real estate. Hell, I'd buy a 42" MBP if they made one. But I only rarely take it any farther than my deck or upstairs (I keep it in the kitchen). I don't consider it too big to take back and forth to work, though.
  5. scienide09 macrumors 65816


    May 5, 2007
    I tested both a 15" and 17" before buying, and went with the 15".

    -The 15" is a little more portable (to and from class, travelling).
    -With a little resizing, two windows side-by-side is definitely possible on the 15".
    -The increased cost for the 17" was a factor against (not worth it for my use).

    For the price difference between the mid-range 15" MBP and the 17", you can buy a pretty good 22" external monitor.
    Which is what I've got, for those times when I need lots of real estate. The kind of work I do that requires that much space is done at home, so this is a great option that works for me.

    Happy with the 15", and would not go larger.
  6. BentwoodBlue macrumors member

    Aug 6, 2007
    I love my 17" screen.. However, if you do any considerable air travel, good luck using it on the plane if you are not in first class or an exit row. If the seat in front is reclined, it is impossible to use.
  7. DubOverdose macrumors member

    Aug 2, 2007
    I've had a 17" Powerbook for 3.5-4yrs, and just yesterday I updated to a new 15" MBP. The 17" is great for a desktop replacement, but the 15" is much easier to work with in your lap. Using the 17" on a plane, even to just watch a DVD is HELL unless you're first class. When I got my Powerbook it was the same price of the high end 15" after upgrading RAM because the 17" had 512 in one slot compared to 256 in both slots.
  8. SVT Amateur macrumors 6502

    Dec 22, 2006
    Tyler, Texas
    ^^ I agree with this guy. I have the 15" and love it and got it because I thought the 17" would be way too big for me (although I'd love the screen). After using my wife's 13" Macbook the 15" MBP seems just right for me and while on an airplane I can still comfortably use it even if someone is reclining in front of me.
  9. auero macrumors 65816

    Sep 15, 2006
    I just ordered the 17" and I'm worried that it'll be too big. My mother has a 15" and I've used it and I found it suitable for using the internet, however difficult when I needed to use photoshop. I'm afraid that the 17" will be too big. It will be replacing my desktop (iMac) and it will probably just move around my house, and back and forth to work. I hate taking expensive toys like these all over so I should be fine... i hope?
  10. MacInTO macrumors 65816


    Apr 25, 2005
    Canada, eh!
    I think the 17" is too bulky to be portable. I've got the 15" with a cinema display. This is the right combination for me.

    I'd like an even smaller portable such as the black Macbook, but I don't think it's got enough video ram for my purposes.
  11. cmaier macrumors G5

    Jul 25, 2007
    I carry my 17" from home to work every day. It's considerably thinner and lighter than my old 15.4" compaq. It's heavy only in comparison to the 15". The extra screen real estate is terrific, and an external monitor is no substitute (it renders the laptop considerably less portable if you have to rely on an external lcd)

    That said, I wouldn't want to try and use the 17" on an airplane tray....
  12. Neil321 macrumors 68040


    Nov 6, 2007
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    17'' because i only ever have to take it out the car and carry a few yards,plus
    the extra screen real estate makes all the difference in my job.
  13. jeff_siler macrumors 6502

    May 4, 2005
    One reason I got the 15" instead of the 17" was the keyboard placement. There is just too much space for me between the front of the case and where the keyboard is on the 17".

    I found it really difficult to use on my lap. I'm just going to buy a used apple cinema display and hook it up to my 15" instead of just going with a 17".

  14. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    I got the 15" because of the portability and the price. To me, the 17" was just too big to haul around and too expensive.
  15. srl7741 macrumors 68020


    Jan 19, 2008
    In my world
    I went with the 17 because the one thing i will always be doing each time i use the MBP is looking at the screen. The larger size seemed to help my eyes.
  16. skiffx macrumors 6502a

    Feb 5, 2008
    Yeah I had the same dilemma as OP, and Ive decided to go with 15" and a 24" Dell that I already have, my logic being, that at home I can use my 24" and when I travel, 15" would be portable as well as good enough to do the job on the go. Also somebody mentioned the distance of the keyboard on the 17" from the beginning of the case, it looks kinda awkward. So if you have to carry it around back and forth get the 15" and an external monitor, if its sitting home most of the time, get the 17.
  17. jeff^d macrumors member

    Nov 8, 2007
    I chose the 15" because of the price, portability, battery life, and LED screen, in that order. It's a desktop replacement for me, and I do not use an external monitor. I find the screen size to be fine, especially if you learn proper use of F10, F11, F12, and Spaces, which I did because I was a Windows user.

    I have found the 15" to be a pain on airplanes, and sometimes it even feels a little big for throwing in my pack and biking to the coffee shop. I wouldn't want to move around the 17", at least not with my current lifestyle.
  18. EricVT macrumors member

    Feb 19, 2008
    Why would the 17" HR be any less adequate for gaming than the 15"?

    Just because the native resolution of the High-Res 17" is 1920x1200 doesn't mean you have to play games in those resolutions. You can always bump down the resolution in the game to those same resolutions you would be using for optimized performance on the 15" and then use the higher resolutions for your applications where the increased screenspace makes a difference.

    Am I misunderstanding this?
  19. crobbins macrumors 6502


    Nov 11, 2006
    I recently bought a 17inch, I like it to some extent, but...I've found it's a little less portable than I was hoping..be careful, I'm finding myself in a bit of buyer's remorse after about 25 days..
  20. Smurfed macrumors regular

    Apr 2, 2007
    Yeah people are misunderstanding that, and it shouldn't be such a big deal anymore cause they've been bumped up to 512mb to handle larger res.
  21. valdore macrumors 65816


    Jan 9, 2007
    Kansas City, Missouri. USA
    I might order a MacBook Pro after the Montevina update later this year, and I'm vacillating between the 15 and 17. I want to be able to use it on a plane, but more importantly, I want to use it for lots of photography post processing when traveling. It will be Photoshop, Aperture, and Photomatix mainly - and I'm wondering if I should opt for the larger screen because of these intended uses...? I can do without the 17 incher's price tag though.
  22. pionata macrumors 6502

    Oct 12, 2005
    Im hesitating between the lower end 15" or the 17" with hd screen (to go with the same res on my 23" ACD). I think I'm going to go for the 15" as 1000$ is too much of a difference for such a small speed difference.
    If I was rich I would get the 17", but this is costing all that's left of my scolarship lol.

    I also plan on carrying this with me almost everyday so perhaps 15" is heavy enough.
  23. dimonay macrumors member

    Jan 16, 2008
    I use Photoshop on a daily basis, and while playing with it on a 15-inch, I found it to be a little cramped when working on some photos.

    I now have the 17-inch, and I can say I highly prefer it than a 15-inch.

    You may lose a bit of portability, but that's a sacrifice that has to be made for some screen real estate :D.
  24. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    17" MBP weights the same as many 14" or 15" wintel laptops.

    Definitely NOT bulky if you are in shape.

    I got hooked on a 17" PowerBook. Now has 17" MBP. Can't go back to smaller screens. But if money is tight, even the bottom MBP seems pretty decent, or get refurb.
  25. valdore macrumors 65816


    Jan 9, 2007
    Kansas City, Missouri. USA
    Maybe the 17 is the good choice then. It'll just sit in my hotel room anyway while I'm somewhere. Or with me in a coffee shop with wifi or whatever... :)

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