Buying a Macbook- Which model

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by sportsfreak, Feb 27, 2009.

  1. sportsfreak macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2008
    Well i have been reading through many threads and have finally decided that for my needs a macbook will be just fine.

    Im going to university next year and will be using this computer for music, games, watching movies, chatting with friends. The basic uses for a college student. There may be come picture editing and stuff and for sure video burning but i think that is it for the main part.

    I just more or less need it to prefrom the basic features that i need in the class rooms- although i love my technology so i would like it to do more.

    I was wondering betweeen the two models. should i go for the 2.0 or the 2.4 Ghz model.

    For the things i listed and such which model will do the best for me. Keep in mind that this laptop will be with me for an entire 4 years so i want to make the right decision.

    I am leaning towards the 2.4 just because its faster and also that it has a blacklight keyboard. i know thats alittle crazy but still, i know that would acutally come in handy for me as i run into this problem all the time.

  2. jsw Moderator emeritus


    Mar 16, 2004
    Andover, MA
    I recommend the backlit keyboard if you can afford it. In dark or dimly lit rooms, it's invaluable. I have Macs with them and without them, and I do miss it on the non-backlit systems. You'll appreciate the speed of the 2.4GHz model, but, of course, in four years, it'll be considered slow. But it'll still work fine. I highly recommend getting AppleCare to ensure you at least have 3 years of use. :)
  3. sikkinixx macrumors 68020


    Jul 10, 2005
    Rocketing through the sky!
    With regards to the back-lit keyboard, I found when i had it on my mbp I never had use for it. Even if you are in a dark room, the brightness of the screen is usually enough to light up the keyboard if you peck at the keys.
  4. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Touch typing FTW! :D

    The 2.0 configuration model is enough. Mine runs most things I throw at it.
  5. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    DING DING DING! I touch-type, but I can also see the letters on my keys due to the brightness of the screen.

    In 2 years, the 2 GHz and 2.4 GHz machines will appear equally obsolete anyway. If you don't need the speed of the 2.4 GHz today, then all you're doing is paying a lot for a backlit keyboard.

    Having said that, if you can afford the 2.4 GHz machine, then buy it. You may as well. If the extra $300 or so dollars was no big deal, I'd certainly take the better laptop. ;)
  6. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

    Jul 5, 2008
    Thule GL @ the TOW
    #6 the cost of the back lit keys, learn to type (faster) and put the $$ towards apple care...
  7. adm19842 macrumors newbie

    Feb 25, 2009
    Considering your needs, performance wise, I'd say the 2.0 would suit you just fine. The speed bump on the 2.4 wont be particularly significant, small increase in HDD space doesnt really matter either, (who stores tons of stuff on their local HDD these days, anyway.. thanks to external drives and services).

    So ultimately,your paying $300 more for just the backlit keyboard - Im not sure if you're usage would justify that.

    You'd be better off useing the money you saved buying a 2.0, towards apple care and 4 gigs of ram.
  8. The Samurai macrumors 68000

    The Samurai

    Dec 29, 2007
    I would recommend the 2.0 unless you REALLY need the backlit keyboard.
  9. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    This is outside of the scope of his question, but with his stated uses, couldn't he use the whitebook with the nvidia 9400 and maxed out ram?
  10. skye12 macrumors 65816


    Nov 11, 2006
    Austin, Tx
    The MB's are a great choice. However, 4 years is a stretch for any
    computer in that it'll be way behind the curve at that point. Not
    to say it will not be usable. I kept an ibook for 4 years or so, but
    was dying because it was so slow relative to the new machines.

    I'd get for the 2.4 and the backlit keyboard.
  11. NXTMIKE macrumors 6502

    Nov 11, 2008
    Get the 2.0 Ghz model but do the following:

    Head over to Apple's online store, use their student discount and configure the base 2.0 model MacBook to a 250 GB hard drive. My Aluminum 250 GB HD MacBook is less than a month old and it's HD is already down to 150 GB.

    On the other hand stepping up to the 2.4 Ghz model shouldn't be really needed for you and not really worth the price.
  12. sportsfreak thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2008
    Alright, so you guys are saying to basically go for the lower end model and maybe do a refresh for a newer computer in 2-3 years time- if that is possible.

    I didnt know about the student discounts thanks for the heads up. They do end up saving me like 100 dollars which is preety decent in terms of price. I think than the 2.0 model will be better because i can upgrade the ram and the hardive and it will still be cheaper than the other model.

    How often do most of you change you laptops/ desktops because as I am going to be a university student I will be tight on money already as it is paying for my tution so i just watned to know if i did want to keep this computer for 4 years how much of a hastle will it be to deal with. Will i be at that much of a downfall if I dont upgrade every couple of years.

  13. The Samurai macrumors 68000

    The Samurai

    Dec 29, 2007
    I had a basic Dell (3 years almost) prior to getting my Macbook. It had no fault, ran like a beast. If your a hardcore graphic designer, you obviously need a powerful system. However, if your studying a business degree then this will perform brilliantly for the duration of 3-4 years I would imagine.
  14. opera57 macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2009
    I agree, the premium for the 2.4ghz is basically for the backlit keyboard. There will only be a neglegible difference in speed within normal usage between the 2, so yea, if you want the backlit keyboard, get the 2.4. If not, just go for the 2.0 [​IMG]
  15. dmmcintyre3 macrumors 68020

    Mar 4, 2007
    I use the backlit keyboard on my PowerBook instead of turning on the lights at my house. I also miss it a lot when I use an external keyboard. If you like the backlit keyboard get the 2.4 if you think you don't need it get the 2.0. If you find you need it in 14 days return it and get the 2.4.
  16. DHagan4755 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 18, 2002
    I wonder how many MacBooks with the backlighted keyboard Apple is selling vs. the entry model without the feature? It doesn't seem to be worth it - springing the extra $$$ for a backlighted keyboard...

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