Help me decide

jacdem

macrumors member
Original poster
Apr 9, 2010
42
0
As a student, my buget is very tight so I am planning to buy a second hand Macbook pro. I have 2 offers but i cannot decide:

1. MacBook pro late 2008
CPU= 2.53G
RAM= 4G
HDD= 320G
Video Card= 9600GT+9400m
Warranty= no warranty left

2. Macbook Pro mid 2010
CPU= 2.4G
RAM= 4G
HDD= 250G
Video Card= 320m
Warranty= 2 more years

I am also planning to add more RAM and also add an SSD drive for the OS(64G)
I got the 2 offers at the same price
I will be using the computer for CAD with illustrator, GIS with GRASS GIS and casual photo editing.
I will also be using it to edit music just for hobby.
Which one will you recommend?
Thanks
 

szolr

macrumors 6502
Jul 27, 2011
376
0
London, UK
If they're the same price get the 2010 one. Better graphics and it sounds like you'll add a SSD anyway so the HDD space difference is not so relevant. Also, the warranty's still on it and I seem to recall it's got better battery life.
 

jacdem

macrumors member
Original poster
Apr 9, 2010
42
0
Thank you for your reply. Will it be a big difference in terms of performance between the two.
 

jlc1978

macrumors 68030
Aug 14, 2009
2,682
1,034
Thank you for your reply. Will it be a big difference in terms of performance between the two.
Probably some but big is relative - for processor intensive applications you'll notice the difference.

I'd go for the newer model based on better specs and a warranty - you really can't afford to fix it if something goes wrong. For me, that'd be the real decision point.

As for the SSD, unless you use it for storage you'll probably not notice much speed difference since disk intensive read and writes would still be the bottleneck. That said, 64 GB is enough for the OS, a limited set of programs and some data - but if you have any serious amount of music you'll quickly run out of space.
The main advantage to an SSD is the faster R/W's - you'll be creating a hybrid that will benefit from the SSD as long as you don't need more space. My suggestion - dual partition the HD on the MBP - create a small 64GB Partition 1 and the rest Partition 2 - that will tell you if 64 GB is a reasonable amount of space (plus your Mac will be marginal smaller do to the physical properties of HDD and how data is stored and retrieved.)
 
Last edited:

jacdem

macrumors member
Original poster
Apr 9, 2010
42
0
I think I will get the mid 2010. BTW, the OS it has now is Snow Leopard and i want to buy Lion when i get it. How does Lion runs on that Macbook pro. Will Lion be faster than Snow Leopard?
 

szolr

macrumors 6502
Jul 27, 2011
376
0
London, UK
I think I will get the mid 2010. BTW, the OS it has now is Snow Leopard and i want to buy Lion when i get it. How does Lion runs on that Macbook pro. Will Lion be faster than Snow Leopard?
No. Snow Leopard will run faster and more smoothly overall. That Mac was built to run Snow Leopard. It can run Lion well enough, but Snow Leopard will be a lot more seamless. :)
 

Mersailios

macrumors regular
Oct 23, 2011
169
0
I also recommend the Mid 2010 model over the Late 2008 model, the warranty alone is enough to justify it in my mind -- it'll give you peace of mind down the road that if something stops working, you're covered.
 

thundersteele

macrumors 68030
Oct 19, 2011
2,984
7
Switzerland
As a student, my buget is very tight so I am planning to buy a second hand Macbook pro. I have 2 offers but i cannot decide:

1. MacBook pro late 2008
Warranty= no warranty left

2. Macbook Pro mid 2010
Warranty= 2 more years

Which one will you recommend?
The one with warranty. Since you're on a budget, reliability is very important. The warranty will ensure that you can use this machine for at least two years. Of course it's also newer and better...

Lion will run fine on the machine. It will _not_ be faster... it will just eat up more ram. New OS are never really faster...
 

jacdem

macrumors member
Original poster
Apr 9, 2010
42
0
Thank you all. I took the 2010 and i love it. I am just sending this on my "new" mac. Lion is a new OS I think it should be better than Snow Leopard but i see here that you all told me to stick with snow leopard. Can you explain me more?
 

thundersteele

macrumors 68030
Oct 19, 2011
2,984
7
Switzerland
Thank you all. I took the 2010 and i love it. I am just sending this on my "new" mac. Lion is a new OS I think it should be better than Snow Leopard but i see here that you all told me to stick with snow leopard. Can you explain me more?
well, new doesn't necessarily mean better. Lion uses quite a bit more memory than SL. For a comparison, after a reboot, SL on my 2008 MBP uses about 500 MB ram. Lion is using about 1.3 GB after the reboot.

Lion has a few nice features, so you might as well give it a try.
 
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