Heading off to boarding school...need a laptop

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by bluedoggiant, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #1
    Hey all:D


    So let me state my dilemma as simple as possible.

    I have a 24" 2.8GHz C2E, 4GB (from crucial), 500GB, ati 2600XT iMac. The mid 2007 one, I bought it in November of 2007. I am heading off to a new boarding high school... and well, taking my iMac isn't really possible.


    For those who are really curious as to the high school, Mercersburg Academy

    But thats an IF, if I do have to go to this high school, I need to know what to do. Number one, I will terribly miss my iMac, I am not sure if I will still keep it to use when I come home from school monthly, as I hate having two computers, too much responsibility.

    Cost is not an issue, I am leaning towards the Macbook Pro, not sure if 15" or 17".

    I do not want to lose any power WHAT SO EVER. I have 4GB ram sticks that I can use in the laptop on top of the 4GB, too have 8GB, but I am not sure if the MacBook Pros support the one in my iMac.

    I multitask alot (6 spaces:p:apple:), Mail, Safari with lots of tabs, Firefox for downloading, Transmission, iSquint rendering, Final Cut Express, iMovie HD (2006), iMove '08/'09, Pixelmator (GPU based photo editor), iTunes with over 30GB of media, iChat, and pretty much all of these apps will run at once on my iMac. Without ANY issues, only difference is, I don't run all the video rendering/editing apps at once.

    Again, NO SPEED loss. No video card power loss either, as rendering relies on it, and my PixelMator app. Also, I am a moderate gamer. I play ETQW, Quake 4, and CoD4. I play these games well on my iMac currently, I do not want any video card power loss. I want high FPS, great quality. I know the one for sure thing I will lose is the bigger screen (oh f*ck i love my 24"), but as far as power, I believe that the 1.93 macbook pro 17" coming soon will meet my standards fine. And my standards are, the same exact power as my iMac, no less. And obviously losing my 500GB drive is a sad thing, but the 320 at 7200RPM makes up for it:eek:! lol

    I will not connect to an external display at all.

    My key points:

    • Price is not a problem
    • I would like to know if my 4GB crucial sticks in my iMac will work with the 4GB in the MBP for a total of 8
    • My options are the 2.53 15" or 17"
    • My hard drive for sure will be the 320GB at 7200RPM, i have a 500GB external for backup
    • NO POWER LOSS, I don't want any slower video render speeds, and want the same multitasking power
    • ABSOLUTELY NO GPU DISADVANTAGES, I want the GPU to be equal or better, my guess is, its already better LOL
    • I will be taking this around everywhere on campus, iMac...not so much :p
    • Umm...I think thats it :)

    So if you guys would be nice, please oh please, to tell me if this option is worth it, if its possible to use my 4GB sticks, will it be any slower? faster? same?

    Any other comments or suggestions PLEASE SAY. Thank you in advance for reading
     
  2. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #2
    The iMac uses desktop memory (different physical form factor), so no luck on that point, AFAIK. The iMac uses desktop 200 pin modules, and the MBP uses 204 pin notebook memory.
     
  3. bluedoggiant thread starter macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
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    #3
    Umm, actually, I was about to edit my first post. But I won't since you brought it up. You're right and you're wrong lol.

    The iMac does not use desktop memory, at least my Mid 2007 Aluminum iMac doesn't. Us mac geeks on here should know well enough that the iMac uses laptop components except the Harddrive. So the iMac actually uses laptop memory.

    Where you're right, it won't work (I don't think) because I just read on apple's site that the MacBook Pro uses DDR3, unlike my DDR2. but thats for the 17", not sure about the 15". Either way...8GB will probably never be used :p, but 4GB will, which is no problem because it comes default
     
  4. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Location:
    North Korea
    #4
    you cant take the RAM from the iMac and put it in the Macbook Pro, its a different RAM model.

    The Macbook Pro uses 2 x 2GB sticks to make 4GB, so adding another 4GB would only give you 6GB total.

    I would preorder the 17" MBP.
     
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #5
    Right, sorry. I actually deleted my post to read more on that, but then anyways... In any event it won't work. Sigh.
     
  6. bluedoggiant thread starter macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
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    #6
    That's exactly what I just sad, DDR2 and DDR3. I mean with older macbook pros and macbooks, I could take my RAM out of my iMac and put it into my family MB or MBP and it would work fine...same exact model, the new MacBooks don't support DDR2. Also I have 2x2GB for my 4GB. I thought maybe the new MBP's had more RAM slots

    Back on topic please :)
     
  7. SummerBoy macrumors regular

    SummerBoy

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  8. shadownddust macrumors member

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    Oct 24, 2008
    #8
    If you don't want any loss in power and cost is not an issue, why not just go with the new 17''? The only reason to even look at the 15'' is if you want something a little smaller (and the 2 inches does make a big difference to some, especially when it comes to carrying something around for more than a few hours a day) otherwise just pre-order the 17. Unless I'm missing something.
     
  9. bluedoggiant thread starter macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
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    #9
    I am waiting for benchmarks to confirm my decision.

    Well, is the 17" worth it? I do want some portability. And price and it being "worth it" are different entities, I know I am making an oxymoron here. I just want some reason in the pricing.

    I am more concerned about power rather than screen size. AND, I don't need it to be light years more powerful.
     
  10. cloudblood84 macrumors regular

    cloudblood84

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    san diego, ca
    #10
    google it indeed. or better yet, just buy both, that way you're safe.
     
  11. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #11
    All intel iMac up to 2007 and
    All non-unibody intel MB use
    667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM, PC2-5300

    Intel iMac 08 use 800 MHz DDR2 SDRAM, PC2-6400

    Unibody MB, Unibody MBP use DDR3 ram, DDR2 ram won't fit.

    Everymac.com has info on type of ram.
     
  12. SteveMobs macrumors 6502

    SteveMobs

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Washington D.C.
    #12
    Do you need to carry the laptop with you all day? Otherwise, won't you have a dorm, where you can put your iMac? That's what I would do. How many times in High School will you need a laptop in class?

    Just a thought.
     
  13. cloudblood84 macrumors regular

    cloudblood84

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    #13

    I'm thinking mainly for facebook/myspace, etc.
     
  14. bluedoggiant thread starter macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

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    #14
    You take the laptop with you to all classes. I have a dorm which I share with someone, it is quite small, the floor space is about the size of say a king size bed. An iMac is too much to take to a high school, in which I will be returning home 12 weeks a year.
     
  15. SteveMobs macrumors 6502

    SteveMobs

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    #15
    That's the only thing I could think of if I had a lappy back in HS. But probably look at mountain bikes and play addictinggames.com
     
  16. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #16
    I would not settle for anything less than a Mac Pro, in that case. ;)
     
  17. macjay macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2003
    #17
    Smaller is better in that situation. I'd get the 15".

    Also, something to consider is the default text size on the 15" vs. the 17". It is quite small on the 17" due to the high resolution. I'd recommend checking it out in person before buying.
     
  18. DarthTreydor macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 25, 2007
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    #19
    boarding school? do your parents not love you or something? if i were you i'd demand a brand new 17" mbp with all the bells and whistles to make up for sending you off to some far away place where they only have to see you 12 weeks a year. ;)
     
  19. dubhe macrumors 65816

    dubhe

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    Location:
    Norwich, UK
    #20
    If money isn't a problem then why are you trying to save a few bucks on memory? Just buy the high end MBP17 with memory, large 7200 HDD and get on with it.
     
  20. js81 macrumors 65816

    js81

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Location:
    KY
    #21
    OK, here's how I see it (not that my opinion is worth anything at all, lol):

    nVidia 9600 in MBP should be an improvement over 2600XT.
    4GB DDR3 > 4GB DDR2 (speed-wise)
    Even though 17" < 24", resolution is the SAME (you don't lose any space, just size)
    2.93 C2D > 2.8 C2D
    Hard drive speed should be equal - BOTH are 7200 RPM.
    (While 7200 RPM is fast for a laptop drive, it's NORMAL for a desktop drive)
    MBP is "portable" (personally I think any 17" behemoth is WAY TOO BIG - I had one and never want another)
    If you want HD speed, skip the HD altogether and get the 256GB SSD.

    That's my thoughts on the performance question. Here's some suggestions:
    -If you're using a lappie 100% of the time, get a stand of some sort to raise the sucker up to eye level - and make sure it has ports so that you won't have to disconnect 20 wires when you take it with you.
    -Get a mouse! (I'd say that's a duh suggestion) And BT is the only way to go.
    -Keyboard is your call. I still can't figure out why Apple won't put a number pad in a 17" laptop.
    -Even though the new 17" is an LED screen, the viewing angle will never be that of a desktop LCD (like the iMac)

    Personally, I'm a desktop advocate - a full-sized, full-powered machine is always more comfortable than any portable (this coming from the guy whose desktop is a Mini, lol). However, I think in your case a top of the line MBP will be at least equal to your current iMac.
     
  21. dvdhsu macrumors 6502a

    dvdhsu

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Location:
    Palo Alto, CA
    #22
    Are you sure you will have to run all the programs together?
    Isn't there any chance that you'll quit the other apps when you're doing something else?
    I really don't think that even a MacBook Pro can handle your demands.
    The best bet would just be to change your habits.
    However, if that is not possible, definitley go with the 17" MacBook Pro.
    The RAM will definitley also be faster, because it is DDR3 vs. DDR2.
    Also go with the fastest processor, and don't disable any of the GPUs.
    Good Luck finding your perfect laptop!
     
  22. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    Colorado
    #23
    Agreed. I'd get the 15" MBP as well.
     
  23. Airforcekid macrumors 65816

    Airforcekid

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    Sep 29, 2008
    Location:
    United States of America
    #24
    :apple:I would say the Air because you have an iMac at home you can use and I would try to take it with you. The pros are very good but for not much more power its a lot more weight. High end MacBook or Air.:apple:
     
  24. dvdhsu macrumors 6502a

    dvdhsu

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Location:
    Palo Alto, CA
    #25
    Have you seen what he needs at all?
    He goes to boarding school.
    He also needs to multitask.
    Basically, he needs the power of a default Mac Pro in a laptop package.:cool:
     

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