I need some help choosing the right 15" model

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Blu101, Sep 10, 2010.

  1. Blu101 macrumors 6502a

    Blu101

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    #1
    Hi guys,

    I've been reading a lot these last couple of weeks, in anticipation of buying a MBP next month. This will be my 1st Apple. It will also be my 1st laptop. I've narrowed it down to the 15" MBP as the right choice for me, but I'm having a tough time between the models. I've also ruled out the 2.53 i5, so this is between the 2.4 i5 and 2.66 i7.

    I plan to use the computer primarily for web browsing, e-mail, MS Office work, personal music, photo and movie collection (will be ripping my old DVD/CD collections, but not planning to do much burning), iChat or Skype communications, some gaming for the road (nothing too heavy) and (next year) Aperture 3 (or 4 if released) with Nik Software plug-ins for amateur professional photography.

    I'm the kind of person that makes computers last (my last one lasted 10 years). With this in mind, I like to buy the top models for future proofing. It's worked well so far. But I also don't like to throw away money "just because". Here are the self-arguments I'm wrestling with:

    - Is the i7 worth the couple extra hundred over the i5? Keep in mind that it also has an extra 256MB on the 330M.

    - I know how often computers get updated, and that's fine with me. Another benefit of buying a top model is that it's usually still beefy through a couple of future upgrades/generations. However, I've caught an article or two about the new upcoming Sandy Bridge architecture and it looks to be a significant step up in evolution. Since they're supposed to be introduced in January for mobile applications, and the next MBP should come out around ~Q1-Q2 next year, is this one worth waiting for? Keep in mind that iLife11 and MS Office11 are also due out. I can possibly squeeze out the wait, but at the same time, this will also be 1st generation of this technology and you know how that goes sometimes. What would you do if you had the option?

    Thanks for the feedback (and sorry for the long post).

    Cheers
     
  2. TopHatPlus macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    Location:
    Southern Ontario
    #2
    hey i just bought the 2010 i7 and it is an amazing machine! the graphics card is pretty awesome, i use it ALOT when i am playing star craft 2 on high quality. I also got the high res screen and the 7200 rpm hard drive. This is truly a performance machine.
     
  3. Blu101 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Blu101

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    #3
    Yeah I like the i7 too, but if the 2.4 i5 is enough for aperture, a few games and personal stuff, I could save a few bucks.

    Anyone know? Is the extra performance worth it with the i7 for what I'll be using it for?
     
  4. Meever macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2009
    #4
    I had the base i5 and is currently on the i7 with matte finish. I like to matte much better and the i7 performance gain is noticeable but not substantial.

    The higher Vram won't benefit you unless you are going to run an external monitor with a very high resolution and do something very gpu intensive like game or model or something.

    For your needs the base i5 is more than enough.

    I wouldn't have upgraded myself but because of some complicated whatnots I was basically getting: higher resolution, double the storage, more vram, faster processor, matte finish and free ipod for 300 dollars more XD

    But yeah, don't let marketing fool you i7-620m is only like 10%-15% faster than the i5-420m.
     
  5. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #5
    Get the 2.4GHz i5 because if you don't know why you would need the 2.66GHz i7, it isn't the one you should pick ;)
     
  6. Blu101 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Blu101

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    #6
    I forgot to mention that I plan on using it in clamshell mode to watch stuff on my 42" plasma (1080i native res). Would this make a difference?
     
  7. Andy348 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 18, 2009
    Location:
    Montreal
    #7
    While it's the obvious answer, get the most expensive model you can comfortably afford.

    There might not be a huge difference between the two, but maybe three years down the road you'll be looking back wishing you got the slightly faster model?

    Thats the way I look at it :p I think you could easily suffice with the i5 though, but if you can afford it, go for the i7.
     
  8. Blu101 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Blu101

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    #8
    This is exactly why I'm about to start ripping the hair off my head lol

    I'm pretty sure the i5 is enough for now. But in a few years down the road...? I'd like something that can take 3-5 years of upgrades (future OS X, Office, Aperture, games, etc.). And I need to rip a good amount of DVDs and CDs to start, so a 7200RPM 500 gig drive is optimal and can save me a lot of time with an i7 alongside it. Since the i7 MBP already comes with a 500 gig 5400 RPM drive, it's only $45 to upgrade to the 7200RPM (edu discount), so it's not even worth it for me to do my own HDD upgrade here (though it would be an extra savings option with the i5 model).

    To make it worse, many articles report the new mobile sandy bridge processors coming out in January. If Apple came out with new MBPs using these by, say, April (like this year with Arrandale),...I could justify the wait, but who knows when Apple will upgrade? One more point for the i7, as far as future proofing goes. Sure, both current i5 and i7 will get blown away with the sandy bridge models, but at least the i7 would be the least blown away model...

    And I'm actually starting to look at the 512MB of vram as the cream for the upgrade, with the slightly better i7 as the bonus, for future proofing in software and games.

    I might just bite the bullet and get the i7.

    Why do they do this to us every time? Can't they just offer models spaced out at like 20%+ better performance al around?? That would make choosing one it so much easier!
     
  9. TopHatPlus macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    Location:
    Southern Ontario
    #9
    that is like 90% of the reason i got the i7, and it comes with double the graphics card, and just has a really cool name =D i am very very happy with my computer and will have it for years worry free, and i seen a 15" macbook pro the same year as my 2007 macbook and i was like damn... should have bought that.... =D haha had a 10 better gpu and was just an amazing size.
     
  10. Blu101 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Blu101

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    #10
    Cool. My gf also has a black 2006 macbook, which is what got me into apple to begin with. I've been a pc user for 21 years and always desktops. But laptops these days are strong enough for my needs and good battery time too, so good time to make the switch. Lovin the mac OS over the ms OS any day of the week too. Bye bye Dell.
     
  11. TopHatPlus macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    Location:
    Southern Ontario
    #11
    hahaha when i bought my first mac i was freshly 18 years old and i bought it on the superstition that apples had good music editing software built in, i knew nothing about the os, knew nobody with with one, never spent more then 5 seconds on it, it was a very risky purchase for those reasons, but after 4 years i would NEVER buy a pc computer. and i have like 10 around me via siblings and parents, and they are just always having issues, down to we got a new router because our old one stopped working, so we got a brand new linksys e2000 wireless N router, and we had a previous wireless n router, so i was pretty excited. So my brother installs it on one of our pc desktops and gets it all up and running and the only computer in the house thats works is my MBP.... i was pretty happy =D
     
  12. Winter Charm macrumors 6502a

    Winter Charm

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2008
    #12
    Ohhh, LOL :) I love when things work out for us fellow mac users. It was really funny when my Uncle bought his $2500 dell XPS (the works) and i had my $999 macbook. We were on an international trip (he takes me to confrences often) and his dell's graphics card shorted out halfway thru a presentation (faulty grouding and a design flaw + bad voltage converter)... I laughed at him, and when he used my macbook for the rest of the week, we went home and the first thing he did was get a full refund on his dell, and drag me to the apple store to (and i quote) "get me something that just goddamn works" :D
     

Share This Page