15" vs 17" specs

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by bigcat, Jun 12, 2009.

  1. bigcat macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    #1
    I need to buy a new MBP in the next few days and was reviewing the specs...

    If I customize the highest end 15" (with a 3.06GHz processor, etc..), and a 17" with the same 3.06 processor, etc.. It seems the only difference between them would be the screen size... It seems both have the same graphics chip, processor.. etc.

    Is that correct? Are people aware of any subtle differences? Like screen quality, etc?

    The 17" would be just a couple hundred dollars more than the 15".
     
  2. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #2
    You're paying for a larger screen (greater than 1080p resolution) and a bigger battery.
     
  3. Anuba macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #3
    17" =

    - Bigger battery (1 hour more of battery life)

    - HUGE difference in screen real estate (the 17" isn't merely bigger, it also has smaller pixels... 133 per inch compared to 110 on the 15"). We're talking 2.3 million pixels compared to 1.3 million, nearly 80% more workspace.

    - ExpressCard port

    - One more USB port (3 total)

    ...and probably better speakers (at least that's how it used to be with the 17"). Also, the fans are better (less noisy due to 'MagLev' suspension -- the 15" uses more traditional fans).
     
  4. bigcat thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    #4
    Thanks. This is good info. Wasn't aware of this.

     
  5. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #5
    17" is more of a portable computer/desktop replacement than a laptop you'd want to travel with or even schlep around town with. That is a major difference to consider.

    The two may only be a few hundred $ apart but they serve two different purposes. Figure out what yours is and buy that one.
     
  6. Anuba macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #6
    The 17" weighs about a pound more and it's a tad wider and deeper, sure. But it's just as thin. To call it a desktop replacement is a little dramatic, and not really fair on neither desktops nor the MBP 17".

    THIS is a desktop replacement:

    [​IMG]

    It weighs about 12 pounds (that's the starting weight with minimum configuration) and it's 2 inches thick. In other words it's twice as heavy and twice as thick as the MBP 17".

    The MBP 17" will be replacing my Dell Precision 15". They're the same weight, and the MBP will fit in the same bag, plus Apple's power supply is considerably lighter (and I often won't need to bring it at all thanks to the battery life) so I'll actually be seeing a minor improvement in portability.
     
  7. JasonR macrumors 6502a

    JasonR

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    #7
    Realistically, the 17" isn't much bigger than the 15". I really see no difference taking my 17" Unibody places than my 1 year old 15" MBP (non-uni). Here's what I did however:

    I bought my 17" UMBP to replace my 24" iMac, will be buying an external display as well. Bought a 13" UBMP for heavy traveling. Best of both worlds, and I love both MBPs.

    Today, the only people who really need a desktop are hardcore video editors, designers, etc.
     
  8. darngooddesign macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #8
    I don't know where you're getting your info, but going from 1440x900 to 1920x1200 is not an 80% increase in workspace. The pixel density is irrelevant to this comparison.

    An 80% increase would be 2592x1620

    Its closer to a 33% increase in workspace. If you do audio work, graphics, or coding that extra will pay dividends, however if you do regular stuff than its not as important. The pixel density will make text, and other elements, appear smaller on the screen of the 17 than they do on the 15.
     
  9. Anuba macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #9
    Yeah... and musicians (lots of synth plugins and audio tracks make the CPU sweat). Oh, and hardcore PC gamers obviously. The dedicated gaming machines are effing huge. Here's Mac Pro vs Dell XPS720:
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Anuba macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #10
    1440x900 = 1,296,000 pixels
    1920x1200 = 2,304,000 pixels

    That's a 78% increase.

    Yes, 1920 is a 33% increase over 1440, and 1200 is a 33% increase over 900, but you can't use just one axis to express the size of the workspace.
     
  11. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #11

    I tell you what, take a 17" on your next plane trip in coach. You won't be able to open it. You can barely open a 15" as-is. Yeah, it's a pound heavier but that extra weight will take its toll on the avg person if they are walking around w/ it all day or even down a long airport concourse in ATL, ORD, or DET. The 15" at 5.5Lbs is hardly a feather weight, but the 17" is a brick in that regard.

    I fly way more than I want to and see 13" and 15" Apple laptops all the time. I rarely see a 17" and for a reason. They do not travel well. They are great for muscians or videographers in the field, or people who don't have a dedicated place for a desktop. And that is primarily who use them.
     
  12. Anuba macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #12
    Sure, that goes without saying... but working on planes isn't part of my life at all. I use my laptop on my desk, in my couch or when I work on location at a client's office. If I use the machine for thousands of hours in those situations every year, and two hours worth of air travel per year, I'm not going to let the latter dictate the size of my laptop.

    If you fly a lot you should have a MacBook Air -- it's in the name. ;)
     

Share This Page