Any chance of a MacBook Extreme?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Yixian, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. Yixian macrumors 65816

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    #1
    Apparently I am unjustified being unhappy that for 2 to 3 thousand dollars, the most expensive laptop Apple will sell me only includes a mid/low end graphics card.

    People keep telling me a 3800 is almost impossible so once again with the Montevina updates, I will be offered a GPU about 300% less powerful than those that can be found in PC laptops half the price of the MBP.

    Why? Because the "Pro" in MacBook Pro actually means "thin". The MacBook Pro is actually a MacBook Air Pro.

    Apple does not offer a high end laptop.

    IMHO, if you are sacrificing performance for excessive thinness on your very highest end "performance" notebook, you shouldn't be calling it Pro anything.

    So is there any chance we'll see a MacBook Extreme or something of the like? For .34 extra inches in thickness Apple could cram at least what other laptops have in them, and that's, GPU wise, cards over 3 times as powerful as the ones predicted for the Montevina MacBook (9700M GT or HD3600) - and they're out already.

    Let's face it the MacBook Pro isn't even a portable iMac anymore, it's somewhere between the iMac and MacBook. It's a MacBook with a sliiiightly better GPU, clock speed and other bits and bobs.

    I'm not saying it's not worth it's price tag, it is, it's just not worthy of it's name, it's not a pro computer.
     
  2. Tialys macrumors newbie

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    #2
    So buy a PC laptop.

    Graphics DO NOT make a pro laptop, they may be important to YOU but honestly, I have yet to find anything other than extremely hi-res video or videogames that can dog the 8600 in my MacBook Pro. If you really want to edit HD video, you should be buying a Mac Pro as a laptop will NEVER cut it for you.
     
  3. Yixian thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #3
    Your argument sounds convincing at first until you simply google around at what the competition has to offer. Obviously extremely high res games and intensive video editing is better done on a Mac Pro, but when you could do those things infinitely better on a PC laptop the same price as a MacBook Pro, only about 1/4 of an inch thicker, there's something wrong.

    Pro = professional. That means professional video, 3D and high res games.

    The GPU is extremely important to all of those and as it stands Apple consistently flunks this aspect spectacularly.

    For example, this Toshiba is 50 bucks cheaper than the cheapest MacBook Pro, and has two of the MacBook Pro's GPUs SLI'd, and HDMI port and a 7200rpm HD as standard.

    This entire situation is absurd..

    I'm not even asking for SLI, and I can live without 7200rpm, just give me performance as a priority, not 1" thickness as a priority...
     
  4. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #4
    What other GFX cards are in the other books at half the price?

    Trust me, I have been begging for Apple to make a Pro high end 17" book for a long time, but the GFX aren't that big of a deal, they give us what others are, and the only way up is SLI and a 2" thick machine with 8 lbs power adaptor.

    I'd prefer dual HDDs and more FW800 ports. I'd sacrifice this useless 3rd USB port for another FW800 or eSATA. Screw BD-R drives for now since external options are much better price wise, but give me eSATA!!!

    Most PC books online don't even give you the 512MB 8600GT as an option, just 256MB. Save for the few that skimp out on other areas like CPU and are only $500 less than the comparable MBP.

    People keep saying that there are these amazing laptop machines for half the cost, but I can't find them unless they are in the super low-end, or have six different deals attached to them.
     
  5. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #5
    You have some serious issues. So what does this say about all of your "pro" machines when the MacBook Pro is the fastest Vista notebook on the planet?
     
  6. masse macrumors 6502a

    masse

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    #6
    I'm all for better graphics performance. Complaining about it doesn't help unfortunately. Apple offers pricier laptops with less performance, but a similarly configured dell or hp or toshiba is only a couple hundred USD cheaper.

    I'm not counting the hd 3800 out just yet, though it's a stretch. Keep your fingers crossed.

    At this point I will be happy with any 256bit card. We probably won't see one of those in an apple laptop until mid 2010 though.
     
  7. InLikeALion macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Um, professional doesn't equal high res games. Gaming laptops equal high res games. Very few professionals are paid to play games.

    What is currently in the mbp is easily enough to accomplish most professional tasks. Including hd video editing. Which really has almost nil to do with the video card.

    Powerbooks/MBP's have never traditionally been an imac in performance. Recently they've shared some processors, but the iMac has always been attractive for how powerful it is. The iMac G5's were way higher performing than its PB counterpart. Only at the beginning of the intel imacs did performance ratio drop to close to the mbp's. Now it's back up to being a tier right below the mac pros.

    I think most pros are happy with the direction of the mbps and not so concerned with its graphics card. As Digital Skunk said, we might have caveats about the ports that are available, or the drives available. You said you didn't even care about the harddrive, but that's what pros will be more concerned with. Your complaints aren't geared towards the pro audience, and thus off-base. Apple doesn't make gaming machines. Period.

    Edit: That isn't to say I won't welcome increased gpu power/speed. I just don't think it's a limiting factor for professionals considering the laptop.
     
  8. noodle654 macrumors 68020

    noodle654

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    #8
    I would say that the high end MBP are high end laptops. If you want amazing graphics and fast processors, go buy a Mac Pro. You can only put so much in a laptop before its hot, heavy, fat, and ugly.
     
  9. Yixian thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #9
    Guys, I hear what you're saying, and I don't disagree the MBP is a great product, but I think Apple should have a performance laptop on the market. The trade off for the 1" thickness is just astronomical, it honestly is.

    For example, let's take Alienware. Yes they're known for gaming, but the power and features of their laptops are gargantuan and worthy of being considered high end, even if their cases are grotesque.

    For the same price as the £1600 MacBook Pro (the 15" mid range one), I can get an Alienware m51x with:

    512mb 8800 GTX
    Intel® Core™ 2 Duo T8100 2.1GHz
    2GB RAM
    Intel Turbo Cache Memory 1GB
    120GB 7200 RPM SATA
    2x Dual Layer Blu-ray Disc Writer

    Sure it's 0.3 inches thicker.. but you know what, if I wanted thin I'd get a MacBook or MBA. I can live with the added thickness and weight and I'm sure many others could too. And it's throttling mode gives it a battery life similar to the MBP with similar specs. If Apple used the HD3800 they could use it's powerXsave or whatever it's called feature to give it better battery life and GPU performance to the current ones while on the go, and about 5x the GPU performance plugged in.

    I just don't understand why Apple don't have a laptop like this. I'd pay 2k for that. I don't want an m15x because it's ugly as sin, lacks Apple's build quality and ofc, OS X.
     
  10. Standard macrumors regular

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    #10
    I use substantial amount of Pro Apps on my FIRST GENERATION MacBook Pro (Adobe, AutoDesk, Luxology), the performance is a tad sluggish at times but you know what? - My hardware is such a bottleneck compared to what is offered today.

    I cannot wait to purchase my new MacBook Pro, my productivity time will be much more efficient, I can promise you that.

    You sound like you want a gaming notebook, I understand where you come from because I too enjoy gaming. I have a first generation Aluminum 24" iMac and play Crysis on Very High (*windowed, Cubans Custom Config)...All my other games the iMac destroys at full screen 1920x1200 native resolution on HIGH. The current GPU's in the MacBook Pro's are better than the Radeon 2600 HD, so I would spend some time tweaking your games to achieve optimal performance.
     
  11. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #11
    Um, this is too simple! Go buy the Alienware! Or build your own! If you don't like the configuration of the MacBook Pro, don't buy it! That's why there are lots of computer manufacturers out there, and why they all make different models, to accommodate different needs. Just because a particular notebook doesn't meet your specific needs, doesn't mean it isn't a great value to others. Not everyone thinks in terms of video editing or high-end gaming.

    I've been a power user of computers and in the industry for more than 30 years, and I NEVER play games on a computer. To me, it's a tool, not a toy! If you want games, buy a gaming machine. "Pro" does NOT necessarily mean "professional video, 3D and high res games!" That's your definition, not Apple's, or mine, or many other users' definition.

    In my world, "Pro" means professional work, which could be iWork or any of the Apple application lines, Garage Band, etc., depending on a person's profession. The point is, everyone has their own definition of what a "Pro" machine is to them. Don't assume that the world and Apple should change their product line to satisfy every user's individual whim. Mass production means making something that satisfies a large number of people, which Apple is obviously doing well. I think they'll survive without your money.
     
  12. Yixian thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #12
    But on a value basis alone, do you really think all that is a fair trade off for 1" thickness?
     
  13. kingshrubb macrumors regular

    kingshrubb

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    #13
    lol.

    I agree with Yix; I'd like to see a better gfx card in the new MBPs but I do like the "thinness". It is a laptop after all.
     
  14. masse macrumors 6502a

    masse

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    #14
    of COURSE NOT. My G4 powerbook is plenty small, and thinner than 95% of other 15 inch laptops of today. 1 inch, and possibly thinner with the next revision is far from necessary.

    But they won't make it bigger.
     
  15. InLikeALion macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    But look at your "gargantuan" trade-offs that are more important to people who use the machines for non gaming:

    • 2.1ghz processor? That's the speed of the slowest mac book. A big not-extreme "feature"

    • 120 GB HDD - that is once again the speck (capacity, not speed) of the lowest mac book. Pros are going to value the capacity of a larger hdd over that. Plus, I believe the higher density of the 200-250gb drives probably closes the "speed" gap.

    • You think that the "turbo cache" is helping you, but that tech has been out since Santa Rosa came out, and almost no-one adopted it. It has been sort-of a dud that doesn't really bring the improvements first speculated.

    So your 8800 card has the same amount of memory as the mpg gpu's, but is a better model. And it has bluray. And it is thicker/heavier.

    That is not an extreme laptop. It is very underspeck in general (for what pros need), but specifically detailed to what is important to a gamer Apple makes decisions to gear the mbp to pro users and dropping things that would be useless to pros but "important" to gamers. They know their target market. Alienware did the same focusing of their product by skimping on things important to professionals while keeping things gamers want.

    Get an Alienware, because Apple is not about to make a non-focused product including everything to market to both pro's as well as gamers. It would be prohibitively expensive and you wouldn't buy it. Neither would most other customers. Hence the specified markets and specified products.
     
  16. Standard macrumors regular

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    #16
    Hope I am not interpreting your statement wrong but...the MacBook Pro's are more than capable of working with Pro Applications on the market today...just my two cents.
     
  17. masse macrumors 6502a

    masse

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    #17
    I'm going to go out on a limb here...

    85% of all macbook pro users don't need a macbook pro for professional needs.

    40% or more of macbook pro owners bought it over the macbook because it looks cool and know nothing about the specs.
     
  18. InLikeALion macrumors 6502a

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    #18
    I'm sorry that wasn't clear. Of course the current MBP can handle them. That is my point. It is a pro laptop and can handle the needs of a pro. Earlier I even pointed out that hd video editing isn't gpu bound and can easily be done on a mbp.

    The OP wants a machine that has all the expensive options of the current MBP as well as all the supposedly superior aspects of an Alienware rig. I'm trying to point out that they are tools for two different tasks and two different markets. The gaming market being the more niche of the two, and not something Apple has historically been interested in addressing.
     
  19. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #19
    Be careful about going out on a limb.... you could fall! First, you threw out some arbitrary numbers with absolutely no evidence to back them up. Second, like the OP, you're assuming that your definition of "professional" is what the world uses. Third, how do you know what 40% of MBP buyers are thinking? Apple would LOVE to know how to do that!

    Sure, the MBP looks cool, but I buy a computer for work, not for fashion. The MBA looks cool, but it doesn't have the capabilities I need for my business, so I didn't buy it. I doubt very seriously that a large percentage of MBP buyers are willing to spend over $2000 just to look cool.... why else do you see all the threads in these forums with potential buyers asking detailed questions about specs?
     
  20. Standard macrumors regular

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    #20
    I'd love to see statistics.

    /signed

    He needs to come to a self realization that if he wants to game, purchase a notebook from another company. Honestly, you can play all the new games on high settings with the current generation of MacBook Pro's.

    OP I suggest you do some research on YouTube, many people have posted videos of last years generation of notebooks running games such as Unreal Tournament 3, Gears of War, Call of Duty 4, Mass Effect and yes even Crysis on High.

    Take a look at this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4jvz7qa-e8 he is using ingame settings and is able to run the game that smoothly. Crytek has not done a very good job with hardware optimization with their engine..so this means you get this - http://www.incrysis.com/forums/viewtopic.php?id=18999

    Boom, your MBP can run the worlds newest GPU benchmark software on High. I know it can, my iMac is not as powerful as the new MacBook Pro's and I play Crysis on Ultra High with those custom configs and average around 30fps.

    ^_^ Sorry to get off topic, but I just wanted to address that the MacBook Pro is quite capable of gaming, so you have nothing to complain about in my opinion.
     
  21. zsft macrumors regular

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    #21
    In my opinion, I think the line between "pro" and "gaming" computers are blurring. Because to me, a computer powerful enough to play Crysis on max is definitely powerful enough to edit HD videos, and vice versa. Unless of course you're talking rendering all of Wall-E or something.

    But anyways, I somewhat agree with the OP, Apple should have another level of notebooks that are more powerful than the MBP. Perhaps keep the current MBP at only 15", and make the 17" MBP into a new product, redesign its frame to handle a bigger GPU...might as well max that 17" out because honestly, who carries a 17" notebook around regularly like to classes and stuff? And if you do, you probably won't mind a bit more for a killer GPU.
     
  22. masse macrumors 6502a

    masse

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    #22
    College students are a huge market for mac laptops, and my numbers are conservative by my count. I know many (40 or so) college students with macbook pros. I know one who actually needs it (goes to film school for special effects and graphic design).

    Just look half of the threads in this forum. Its like every 15 year old of the upper middle class HAS TO HAVE a macbook pro.
     
  23. InLikeALion macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    The OP's example of a gaming rig isn't. You are paying currently for specks that the mbp had 2 years ago. That isn't a good trade-off to professional users. And I'll say it again: HD editing is cpu intensive, so it would be worse with that slower processor.

    Why should they? The current ones sell very well. And you'd make the entire machine bigger just to accommodate a bigger gpu that most people wont utilize? The problem tends to be (in my opinion) that gamers just get stuck on statistics and fps numbers without being concerned for real-world performance.

    As Standard pointed out, you can play almost anything with current mbps. None of you "I want more gpu"ers are giving a compelling case as to why Apple should do that, what the real benefit would be, and why that would be a good financial and marketing desicion. All you think is "its not the same product number in the high-end portable gaming stations, so it must be terrible, and Apple should build me my dream machine if I'm going to pay them 2-3K!"*

    *granted, just my observed opinion.
     
  24. MojoWill macrumors 6502

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  25. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #25
    A survey of 40 college students that you happen to know is hardly conclusive! And exactly what percentage of total MBP sales are to college students? I don't doubt they're important to Apple... Jobs has always catered to students. The point is, you're still making wild assumptions that you know the makeup of Apple's customer base or that you know what the needs are of the computer-buying public at large. Big mistake!
     

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