Help a brotha out! MBP 13.3 inch or MBP 15.4 inch?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by rjsbass, Jun 11, 2009.

  1. rjsbass macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2006
    I will be doing 3D rendering during the first two weeks of an internship this summer in Rhino (or a mac equivalent program). after that, i will mostly be using this computer at college, doing word processing and research.

    i have no idea if i'll be using heavy programs in research during the next few years @ college. i know i'll be majoring in physics and there are extensive research projects junior n senior year. i have no problem spending the money on the 15.4 2.66ghz computer if that will truly suit my needs. however, i'm worried about the portability and the fact that i may not need the specs i'd be getting. i would hate to spend extra $$ for things i wouldn't be using..

    but concerning the 13.3 inch mbp, i'm worried that it will fall short on specs and screen real estate (will it be comfortable typing a 5k word paper on a 13.3 inch screen?)

    another option is ordering the 13.3 inch mbp and with the extra money, get a cinema display. but then again, the specs do worry me.

    i've been outa the computer-technology loop for quite some time so i can't really make an informed decision by myself. please help!


  2. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    I've typed a 270 page paper on my 13" MB, if that gives you any indication. Pixel density on both the 15" and 13" screens is essentially the same, so all the lettering will appear the same size. You don't get smaller text by going with the 15" MBP, but you do get a tiny tiny tiny increase in screen pixels.

    IMO, the resolution of the 15" is the same as the 13". The difference isn't big enough to notice. The reason to buy the 15" MBP is the 9600M GT video card, since it has its own vRAM (rather than sharing system RAM....a slower process). It's not really a big deal for physics, and to be honest, by the time you're ready to work on massively important projects, you'll probably be due for a new laptop anyway (assuming you're starting your 1st year of uni). ;)
  3. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    Get the cheapest 13" MacBook Pro. It will be fine for you. No need to upgrade RAM or anything.
  4. winninganthem macrumors 6502a


    Jun 10, 2008
    Get the 15" with discrete graphics if you think you'll do any kind of gaming or 3d modeling. I'd hate to do 3d stuff with integrated graphics. Ugh.

    By the way, good luck majoring in physics, that's some really hard crap lol.
  5. rjsbass thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2006
    i'll be starting my second year @ college

    do you really think that regardless of the computer i get, i'l be buying a new one in 3 years?? i thought macs were supposed to last a while
  6. AmpCoder macrumors 6502

    Mar 27, 2007
    I will be starting my fourth year of college and I am a Computer Science major. I personally opted for the 13" MacBook Pro and I am planning on using it with my 24" LED Cinema Display.
  7. rjsbass thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2006
    I think this is what I'm going to do. Sounds like an awesome set up!
  8. marioman38 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA

    and yup, even if you buy the (in my case $2799 17" Macbook Pro) three years later (2 years 6 months in my case) you'll be after a new one. Thats technology for you.

    Myself? I'll be picking up the 2.26Ghz 13" MBP next week and scoring a free iPod!
  9. rjsbass thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2006
    does anyone else have the cinema display to accompany their 13.3 mbp?

    is it worth it?
  10. rjsbass thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2006
  11. Capt Crunch macrumors 6502

    Aug 26, 2001
    Cleveland, OH
    I have the LED cinema display. It's absolutely fantastic, but it's not really "worth" it. I splurged for the extra convenience and form factor (even after getting a new one for $200 off on craigslist).

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