I just want your opinion, 3.2GHz QUAD Mac Pro vs. 17" i7 Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by jjahshik32, Aug 25, 2010.


If you had to choose 1, which would it be??

  1. 3.2GHz Mac Pro QUAD + ATI 5870

    12 vote(s)
  2. 17" i7 2.66GHz Macbook Pro

    1 vote(s)
  1. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    I want your opinion guys. I know this is a Mac Pro section and people might be biased but some of you guys own both a Mac Pro and a Macbook Pro.

    I'm torn and before my 2 week exchange period is over with, I'd like to make a final decision.

    I keep battling the decision between a 3.2GHz QUAD vs. the 17" i7 Macbook Pro.

    I already have a samsung netbook that is fast enough (running windows, which is what I need in most cases) that I carry around to and from campus to do all my school work (I dont carry my 17" at all).

    I currently use my 17" mbp as a desktop replacement (got a big corner galant desk with a nice nec monitor on an ergotro MX arm) and while it is fast for what I do, I really miss having a powerful desktop.

    I'm trying to keep myself from owning both the mac pro and the macbook pro as I only need one fast computer.

    On one end, I'm leaning towards the 3.2GHz Mac Pro as its a beast (never owned anything higher than a 2.8GHz Mac Pro model) and it would zip through everything I throw at it AND I wouldnt need to upgrade for a very long time. But at the same time, I like the portability that I get with the 17" macbook pro with the awesome high resolution display and nice loud speakers. When I DO carry my 17" (to a friends place, or around the house) it feels nice to be away from the desk and it feels like carrying a compact desktop everywhere you go. :D

    One of the big reasons that I want to go with the Mac Pro is the ati 5870. I really miss having a powerful desktop (I play games occasionally). I know I can build a powerful PC to play games but I want to use the Mac Pro for everything basically. I run alot of vmware fusion, use photoshop, dreamweaver, starting to learn final cut pro, use 16 spaces but ultimately need more space!! I currently only have a 1TB HDD that I constantly erase contents to make more room/space. I'd love to stick the intel SSD in the Mac Pro with the 3.2GHz power.

    Damn but I finally got THE perfect 17" macbook pro! The display is simply gorgeous/stunning, no backlight bleeding, no yellowing, very vivid and juicy colors, speakers sounds loud with no static and nice and even.


    As I wouldnt mind owning either machine, I'm going to take this poll's % and actually decide based on it.

    Another part of me is thinking that for a $2500 machine (17" macbook pro) it is really really nice but for a little bit more I could be getting something even more crazy (Mac Pro), especially in performance/storage area.
  2. sboerup macrumors 6502

    Mar 8, 2009
    Sorry, you are not going to get many people in this section of the forum recommending the Macbook. If you need the power, the Mac Pro will dominate, but it really depends on what all you need a fast computer for . . .
  3. jjahshik32 thread starter macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    Ultimately, I'd love the Mac Pro since it can tear through everything I throw at it and much faster than a macbook pro.

    I know most people here are Mac Pro users but there are some people that still read these threads that are on the fence about one (like me) and others who just read each sections of the forums just because they're Mac enthusiasts.

    Hopefully I'd get a mixed bag result.
  4. Vylen macrumors 65816

    Jun 3, 2010
    Sydney, Australia
    It's a waste to use a laptop as a desktop replacement. Plus, 17" is puny for a desktop :p

    Get the Mac Pro and run 3 monitors (or more) out of it - the greater screen space negates the need for so many Spaces and it's just that much easier to work/multitask. Plus getting more monitors will make good use out of big galant desk ;)
  5. Ryan P macrumors regular

    Aug 6, 2010
    I can stick up a little for the MBP as I think highly of mine and have not received my Mac Pro yet. I have the 2.66 i7 15 inch... Some nice thoughts

    1) As far as I can tell a Ghz on a i7 MBP is roughly equivalent to a Ghz on a 2010 Mac Pro. For instance, I get a Geekbench of 5300 despite only having 2 cores.

    2) The 2.66 has a turbo boost all the way up to 3.33 which is really high!

    3) It only has 2 cores.... though OS X sees 4 with hyper threading..it means the Mac Pro will spank it for heavily multithreaded programs like Adobe After Effects, 3D Rendering, etc. It should actually beat many Mac Pro's for non threaded Tasks though.

    4) It is limited to the best of my knowledge to 8GB's of RAM which is probably going to be the main reason you eventually have to replace it. I'm at 8GB and it is fine for me now with 2 cores. But for my Mac Pro I am going straight to 24GB.

    5) The 330M is "ok"...you can even play most games...but it's nothing great.

    6) You can remove the optical drive and get 2 hard drives, I have a 120GB SSD and a 1TB hard drive, a 1TB Firewire800/eSata drive, 4TB Firewire800/eSata drive. I can't make use of the esata but you will be able to on the 17".

    7) It is a hell of a lot more portable than a Mac Pro.

    8) It works great docked to a 24" Apple Cinema Monitor, Wireless Keyboard and Mouse, which is how I use mine.

    A lot depends on how much portability you want, how long you want to keep it, and how much expansion you need. To be honest, I could do without the Mac Pro. I'm simply buying it because I can and I think it will save me a little time and bring me a little enjoyment.

    I couldn't do without the Macbook Pro. I'd have to hire some poor soul to follow me around all day with the Mac Pro and a monitor!
  6. jjahshik32 thread starter macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    Lol, good points!

    Man I do really love my 17" macbook pro though. But I'd love to have the Mac Pro as my main machine..
  7. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Since you have a netbook and you're saying it does what you need, I'd keep the Mac Pro and rid of the MacBook Pro.
  8. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    What you are asking seems like a bizarre question to me. I know you think you are asking should I get the beef or the chicken, but to me it sounds like you are asking should you get dinner or desert. Of course getting dinner or desert depends on what your nutritional needs are at the moment, where as getting beef or chicken is just preference.

    I have both a MP and MBP, couldn't do without either. Obviously I can't take the MP on a trip or even down the street to the coffee shop. At the same time I wouldn't want to edit a video or a slew of RAW pics on my MBP.

    So it seems the question you have to ask is, "what are my true, right here, right now, computing needs." Then you will have your answer. Personally, if my budget dictated I had to pick one in 2010, I'd go for the MP because 50% of what I do on my laptop I can do on an iPad and the other 50% isn't so essential that it can't wait until I get back to my MP.

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