2.4 aluminum macbook or 2.66 aluminum macbook pro

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by trevorplease, Mar 15, 2009.

  1. trevorplease macrumors regular

    Feb 13, 2009
    I've been waiting for what seems forever for the Studio XPS line to come out ever since I found out about the M1330 (and all it's problems.) Now that the SXPS is out, I read about all the problems and I no longer like it. In the mean time, Apple came out with these two great looking, sexy laptops and now I can't decide between the macbook and the macbook pro after using both in store.

    So I'm trying to decide between the 2.4ghz MB and the 2.66ghz MBpro

    2.4 aluminum macbook:
    + about $800 cheaper than pro
    - doesn't offer a high resolution
    - the screen/color unevenness sucks
    - have to pay extra to upgrade to 4GB of ram (I don't trust myself working with computers just yet)

    2.66 aluminum macbook pro:
    + more screen resolution
    + less eye strain if i use as desktop replacement?
    + two graphics cards (do I really need the second one?)
    + bigger stock hard drive
    + no need to upgrade to 4GB ram
    - with student discount here; around $800 more than the 2.4ghz MB
    - a little heavier?
    - harder to carry around?

    After looking at the two screens on the mb and mbp I've decided that I CAN tell that the mb screen sucks compared to the pro, but I can't justify the $700 increase in price just yet...I'm indecisive.

    Also, I'm in love with the new apple track pads, it's so hard to use any other now.

    I'm basically looking for people to tell me it's okay to splurge and somewhat "future proof" my laptop instead of conserve on a laptop that will probably stay with me till it breaks...

    Also, I heard that there are build problems with both models such as uneven back-lighting, The headphone port being static-y, Wi-Fi isn't up to par, etc? Can anyone ease my mind off these problems?

    I'll be using this computer for everything that a college student would use it for and more, I'm looking to use it in school (word processing, presentations, etc.) Also at home as a sort of desktop replacement everything else leisure like listening to music, CD ripping, a little gaming, web browsing, a little photoshop, multitasking

    I know everyone says you'll need a pro for audio/video editing, movie making, etc but what if I don't do any of that; but I just want the most fastest I can get now without worrying that it'll be obsolete two or even one year ahead?
  2. DeusInvictus7 macrumors 68020

    Aug 13, 2008
    Kitchener, Ontario
    Anyone here can tell you their opinion on what you should buy, but it all comes down to you deciding if that $800 is worth the upgrade. For me, it wasn't, and I don't regret it. I have carried my cousin's last gen pro around, and I love the portability of my macbook a lot more. Of course, a lot of people won't mind the extra pound, but for others, it matters.

    And to be honest, I actually like the style of the macbook more compared to the pro. I'm not a huge fan of the speaker grills on the side :p, but again, that's just me.

    Depending on what you do, the nVidia 9600 might/might not be necessary. In my situation, I stopped gaming on a computer since I have a PS3 to do all that, so I didn't need it, and I don't do anything that requires a dedicated gpu.

    As for the Wi-Fi, I really think that it is just the aluminum casing that causes problems, since my cousin and I have problems sometimes with the connection and my sister (white macbook) doesn't. Also, I'm not sure on this, but from what I've been experiencing, the Airport cards in macs don't really play well with routers that aren't dual band, because I get random drops pretty often, since the network in the house has a couple more "g" computers than "n".
  3. MGLXP macrumors regular

    Sep 29, 2005
    In my case, I went from a 2.4GHz Macbook Pro (pre-Penryn) to a 2.4GHz Macbook Unibody for the increased portability (they are 1 lb lighter than the MBP) and new features of the Macbook (i.e. multi-touch glass trackpad, unibody chassis, etc.). Also, what influenced my decision to go with Macbook was that they were now mini Macbook Pros rather than cheap plastic laptops. At first I was quite satisfied with the Macbook except for the horrid screen (it is really much worse than the MBP or MBA...but I got a 24inch LED Cinema display which is absolutely beautiful). The Macbook was much easier to carry around compared to the Macbook Pro. But, I slowly started missing the speed of Firewire 800 and eSATA (through the Expresscard/34 slot) on the Macbook Pro (I guess I got spoiled by the speed of my previous MBP) when I transferred tens of gigabytes worth of files. Although USB 2.0 speeds have increased on the new Macbook compared to older ones, it's still magnitudes slower than Firewire 800 or eSATA. Anyways, I am now purchasing a new Macbook Pro and plan on selling this Macbook because for me, I realized I needed Firewire 800 and eSATA. Hope this helps in your decision making process!
  4. xhambonex macrumors 6502a

    Apr 17, 2008
    well you said nothing about what you do with the computer, so I can't really tell you what to do. For most people the MBP is more computer than they would ever need. And screen quality, what exactly are you using your computer for?? Is that screen an issue for you?

    As far as the new unibody computers, not a huge fan, so I'd go with a previous gen and get everything great about the MBP for the price of a UMB. The screen is too much for me, so much glare for no reason. Im not on board with apple as they continue to design form before function.
  5. trevorplease thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 13, 2009
    I edited my original post to answer some questions.

    About the macbook unibody screen: Well that's the one component of the computer that everyone, including me has to look at when using the lap top. I think for me, just knowing that there is a option of having a clearer screen makes the macbook screen more crappy then it really is, perhaps. When I went in-store to look, I noticed that it's really incapable of displaying black...showing a light silveryish color instead. Real turn off.

    I know in the end I have to decide if I want to drop $800 more, but I'm just searching for opinions.

    I'm also worried about buying now and in 3 months, apple releasing new technology... Since this will probably last me for the next three, four, or maybe even five years.
  6. moniker macrumors member

    Jun 15, 2007
    London, UK
    If you can't justify the extra cost of the MBP then don't buy it. And Apple will always release new technology in a few month's time but does it really matter? If the current models are sufficient now they will also be sufficient in a few months time. Granted you won't have the absolutely latest and greatest but so you won't if you buy the MP either.

    It's all a matter of matching your needs to your money and leave the wants and desires aside.
  7. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Get the Macbook and a nice external monitor and you'll still have $400-500 leftover. The Macbook Pro honestly will not help you do any of the things you mentioned appreciably faster.
  8. sagnier macrumors regular

    Sep 19, 2007
    just buy the mbp. what else could you possibly find in your life to spend that $800 on? and it would be an offence against your eyes to have to buy the mb, both because of the 'strain' and the 'suckiness'.
  9. eXan macrumors 601


    Jan 10, 2005
    Why not just get the 2.4 GHz MBP?

    Adding RAM is extremely easy even for inexperienced users and there's a manual with every step pictured for even easier process.

    Also, you probably don't even need 4 GB...
  10. trevorplease thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 13, 2009
    Because the difference in price is too little for me($1900 vs $2300), I'd rather just spend the extra money to get everything maxed out. I know, I like to waste money...

    So what kind of users actually buy a pro if the regular mb is enough for 'most' users?
  11. Liam8 macrumors 6502


    Mar 15, 2009
    MacBook pro

    I would say buy the macbook pro. Overall it will lays longer, it is faster, better graphics. If you can pay the extra money you should get the pro. :D
  12. mbleopard macrumors regular

    Sep 8, 2008
    I second that, should you run out of room on your hard drive they are extremely easy to replace, physically swapping in a new one can be done in less than 10 minutes. The RAM is a bit more complex because you need to remove the entire bottom of the laptop, but still pretty easy to do.

    I really don't think the screen on the macbook is bad at all, the macbook pro would be a little better for things like photoshop, but if you don't use it all the time it isn't worth it. I use my laptop with GIMP, web browsing, engineering software, presentations, and some gaming, nothing too extreme, but it all works great.
  13. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    Forget the 2.4GHz MacBook model, it's overpriced and brings nothing worth having for the extra money.

    Look at the 2.0GHz model - it's very, very close in performance to the 2.4GHz model and for what you intend to use it for I bet you would never even notice any difference.
  14. yorkshire macrumors 6502a


    May 18, 2008
    This is the best option IMO. You'll save a lot of money.
  15. sagew macrumors member

    May 1, 2008

    New 2.0 Macbook is (compared to previous revisions):
    More capable (video)
    More Rugged (aluminum)

    Unless you're running pro apps the 1299 macbook isn't one to overlook.

    Plus...you can upgrade twice in that period at 1300 vs 2300...almost.

    Love my MBP SR 2.2, but if I was in the market right now the 2.0 mb would be at the top of my list.

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