Connecting a MBP to a Full HD 50" plasma - 15" or 17" MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sappster, Jun 19, 2008.

  1. sappster macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2008
    Hi All,

    Please tell me - Does it make a difference which MBP I have when connecting it to a Full HD 50" plasma (mine is a Samsung P91)?

    For example, is it better to connect a 17" HiRes to a full HD 50" plasma - or will the 15" (and standard 17") do exactly the same job as far as resolution is concerned (without upscaling the signal)?

    I would be purchasing a MBP next week - 15" is great for portability ... while the 17" HiRes sounds SO good as well. The last thing I need to consider prior to making a final decision is the aforementioned issue.

    17" HiRes - would it generate a better image on a full HD 50" than the 15"?

    Thanks heaps for the flood of anticipated advice advice :D:D:D
  2. kornyboy macrumors 68000

    Sep 27, 2004
    Knoxville, TN (USA)
    Wirelessly posted (iPhone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/420.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.0 Mobile/4A102 Safari/419.3)

    It all depends on the graphics card. So in this case it would be the same since you can get the same graphics card in both models.
  3. Screwball macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2006
    The maximal output resolution of the graphics card is independent from the maximal resolution of the display!
    All three MBPs' graphics cards have the same max. output resolution!
  4. serdaryilmaztr macrumors newbie

    Jun 18, 2008
  5. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
  6. Westsider 4 Mac macrumors regular

    Westsider 4 Mac

    Apr 12, 2007
    On the West Side
    I have

    used both 15 & 17 inch on a 42 inch HDTV with no issues. I cannot imagine there being a problem with a 50 inch...:apple:
  7. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    I would prefer the 17" mbp since it has the 512mb vram which will help on that size of a plasma screen tv (with my personal experience as well I have a 52" sony bravia xbr4 that I use my 17" mbp to connect to and its very fast).

    Ive tried connecting the 15" 2.4Ghz model with the 256vram and it lags horribly (I'm guessing the cache + the 256vram). Anyway I've owned the 15" 2.5Ghz model with the 512mb vram and it drove my bravia better as well but overall the 17" seems to run the best (Im thinking the 17" mbp clocks up higher because of the more bigger/efficient heatsink).

    Its not only apparent driving external monitor in the increased speed but its apparent on the laptop running osx and seeing the effects as well!
  8. Hutch98R1 macrumors newbie

    Oct 29, 2007
    FYI: a 24" monitor has a higher resolution than your 50" plasma(even if it is 1080p). My 15" MBP has a higher resolution than my 42" 720p plasma.

    Why are you hooking your MBP up to a TV? for the occasional photo/presentation type of sharing, or for a larger workspace.

    Just make sure you understand that inches doesn't always equate to a larger workspace on a TV. :apple:
  9. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    Thats true but for some reason it seems to be harder to drive the 52" sony bravia xbr4 than it did with my 23" ACD. I had the 15" 2.4ghz,2.5ghz,2.6ghz, and the 17" 2.5ghz and the 17" 2.6ghz.

    In my personal experience (owned each laptop 1.5weeks before exchanging due to some issues like dead pixel, backlight problems) even driving my 23" ACD the 17" felt alot faster and much more fluid as well. I'm thinking the 17" mbp has a bigger logic board and it has a bigger/more efficient heatsink so it can clock the gpu or cpu higher more frequently while running alot cooler as well.

    Also the 256mb vram vs. 512mb vram on the 15" mbp side, the 15" mbp with the 512mb vram drove the 23" ACD much faster/more fluidly than the 256vram.

    I'm sure cache had something to do with it as well but to give you an example: when you use the 15" mbp with 512mb vram in closed shell mode and running only off the 23" ACD the overall experience is much faster like running on your mbp's screen. But in my experience the 17" mbp even in dual mode runs even faster/more fluidly on the 23" acd side and the 17" mbp's screen in dual mode than the 15" mbp did with the closed "shell" mode.
  10. odog402 macrumors member

    May 26, 2008
    can someone tell me if I need to buy an extra cable to hook it up to my 47" lcd tv?
  11. GUILTIE macrumors regular

    Jan 2, 2008
    Yeah, anyone willing to explain the steps and what cords are needed to hook it up? I'll be hooking mine up to a TV when I get mine too.
  12. MattZani macrumors 68030


    Apr 20, 2008
    Well, unless your Tv is 1080p, even the 15" MBP will have a higher Res than it, and all of the MBP's can drive a 30" ACD, which has a res of 2560 x 1600, so its 1600p in Tv Terms, so the MBP will have no problem with a Tv, of any size.

    If you had a Macbook, that would be another story, but the Pro can easily drive 1080p displays (And beyond!)
  13. Macabron macrumors member


    May 23, 2005
    Durango, México.
    Well, I do have a MacBook, 2.0ghz. I have no trouble running a 40" samsung 1080 tv, either in 2 screens or mirroring my display, I do have 4 gigs of ram, so that might help the anemic amount a vram all the MacBooks have. All you need is a dvi to hdmi cable, you can find it in any of your big name retailers in the US, or order it online for 10X less money. Since the MacBook has only a mini dvi out I had to get also a mini-dvi to dvi adapter thru apple. Your Mac should be able to give you enough options thru the displays preferences, it usually gives you the option to overscan, otherwise you get a nice black frame around the image. Not a problem with movies and such but it is bothersome if you want to use the tv as your main display, as it will not let you see the top menus, So you either get the whole screen or only part of it. The other thing is that you need to find a way to route your audio out of the Mac, hdmi transmits audio and video, but dvi only gets the video out of your laptop in this case. Not a problem with me since I use desktop speakers anyway.

    Attached Files:

  14. sappster thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2008
    Hi Guys,

    Thanks heaps for the advice.

    Yes - for watching downloaded movies/tv shows and also keynote presentations. Not for larger workspace.


    As for the 512mb and 256mb cards - I would be getting the option with the 512 on either the 17" or 15" ..and both with 4gig ram. With the 17" it would be HiRes. The only reason for going for the 15" is for portability reasons - around the house and out and about. For the first time ever, I will be able to take my work outside of my home office! woo woo!

    jjahshik32 - thanks for your advice on the 17" running better than the 15". I would be quite sad if I get a 15" and it's no able to run downloaded videos on the big screen. In saying that however, I am not sure how well it would look on the bigger screen - pixelated?

    This is one of the biggest problems with Apple here. If you aren't happy with a system, especially if it has been built to order, it costs a huge premium to return it and get another one. I can't even try it out.

    Any further advice based on my choices above?

    Thanks heaps for all info so far.


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