If Macbook Powerful enough, except want 15" Screen, Why do I feel I need 2.4 MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jiholl, Feb 1, 2008.

  1. jiholl macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2003
    Power wise, Macbook would be fine for me...basic home use...but I want 15" screen .. so I want a MBP...but I then find myself feeling that I need to go with the top of the line 2.4 and not the 2.2...I can afford the 2.4, but can someone convince me that I really dont need to waste the $500? Thanks
  2. gyumilly macrumors member

    Oct 3, 2007
    I would get a nice LCD monitor with half of $500. 2.2 v.s. 2.4 is just a number. I bet you won't feel much difference. Besides, by buying a macbook, you can spend extra $60-90 to buy 4G RAM. Much much better deal to me especially for a home use and that's exactly what I did.

    good luck
  3. tersono macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2005
    The difference between the 2.2 and the 2.4 really is minimal in normal use. I'd definitely save the dough if I were in your position. Personally, I have a 2.4 Ghz machine, but that's only because I went for the 17" screen and that was the lowest option. I've used a 15" 2.2 and really was not aware of any difference in performance - for that matter, I regularly use 2Ghz iMacs at work and they also feel similar, performance-wise (other than faster disk access, obviously).

    Spend some of the extra $500 going for the largest/fastest HD available and some more in upgrading to 4gb RAM (from Crucial, OWC or whoever - don't buy RAM from Apple!).
  4. eswank macrumors 6502

    Sep 26, 2006
    I'm on the same boat as you. But I've decided to stick to a refurb MacBook 2.2 White. With that extra $500 you can max out your ram for about $100, buy a carrying case, buy the Speck MacBook cover, and you'd still have money left over.

    As you can tell, that's what I'm planning to do. :)
  5. steve31 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 20, 2007
    Edmonton Canada
    Buy the 2.4 if you want to game. The cpu upgrade is not worth the 500 but the gpu from 128 to 256 is nice if you want to game. I am not a gamer but I like to play the occasional game. I am glad I did. I am playing Call of Duty 4 on it with boot camp and am amazed with the graphics and speed. ;)
  6. Liquidpics macrumors member


    Jan 29, 2008
    New Jersey
    Get the 2.4ghz...

    you'll have buyer's remorse if you don't get the 2.4ghz especially when the 2.8 ghz Macbook pro's come out. It becomes psychological when your spending that type of money. Even the Genius from the Apple store tried to persuade me to get the 2.2ghz but when asked which one he went with himself he said, "the 2.4ghz just because". No rational justification.
  7. socamx macrumors 6502

    Oct 7, 2004
    How do you know if the extra 128 made any difference? I play UT3 (and other games) at max settings on my 2.2 ghz MBP with only 128mb of vram.

    I just can't justify 128 more mb of vram and 200mhz proc speed for $500 in a laptop that is going to have aggressive power saving going on. It lowers clock speeds if it gets too hot and all. I could go into gross, nerdy details about the memory bandwidth on the 8600gt being only 128-bit and the fact it is a laptop video card so that in itself makes the difference in vram even more moot, but I digress. Now if it was 64 vs 256... that would be a very different story.

    It just isn't worth $500 except for some very, very rare cases. If you ask me, they should just drop the low end one, and make the middle the low end price. Then it would just be a 15 or 17 inch screen decision. Would also make sense for a 13 inch screen to be in the low end if they went that route.

    Also the difference in speed between 2.8 vs 2.4 and 2.8 vs 2.2 will be practically identical, so 'buyer's remorse' will occur in both cases.

    Just get the 2.2, you'll be happy with it and will have $500 to play with other things. You don't *need* the middle one, really. I am 100% satisfied with my 2.2 GHz MBP, the performance is outstanding and am glad I saved the money for other things, like the extended warranty.
  8. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    The extra video ram helps with RAW/Aperture and I think some of Final Cut studio as well.
  9. durant0s macrumors regular


    Jan 9, 2008
    Houston, TX
    socamx, do you recommend the low end MBP even if I plan on playing Starcraft 2? I would really love to save money anywhere I can, but I also want as much capability as a can possibly get... this is capitalism. Just to help you answer the question. Games and just regular internet use for school will be my main functions of this machine.
  10. jiholl thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2003
    Thanks all

    I tend to keep laptop for like 3-4 years...so if I go with 2.2 will I be "sorry" towards the end?
  11. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    I have to say that I doubt you'll ever notice the difference between the 2.2 and the 2.4. Save the $500 and get the base MBP. Thats what I did. ;)
  12. socamx macrumors 6502

    Oct 7, 2004
    The problem with starcraft II is that there aren't any official system requirements out yet that I'm aware of, let alone benchmarks. I can't see it being more demanding than a game like Crysis however which all the MBP models can handle on about medium settings. It is probably very safe to assume that you'll be able to play SCII on the current 'low' end MBP.

    If you really want to save money then I don't think you'll miss the 2.4 with 256mb. $500 is a lot of money to students.

    If you consider yourself a hardcore gamer however, then you should probably drop down to the Macbook and put $1000 into a custom built desktop dedicated for gaming. You can build a high end gaming system for $1000.

    I bought my MBP with the intent of it lasting me 3 to 4 years. I got almost 4 years out of my old iBook G4 1Ghz and even with the latest Tiger update and only 640 mb of ram it ran very well. The MBP should have no problem being a very usable and snappy machine 3 years from now, just don't expect it to play the current games of the day.

    Edit: Just keep in mind though, some new technologies that come up may not work on it. Like my old iBook didn't support core image. Though, its video card (at the time) was low end while the Powerbooks at the time had a mid-range card that did support core image. (The MBP video card is also mid-range.)
  13. jmchen3 macrumors member

    Jan 31, 2008
    you should get the top of the line white macbook
    with x3100 it will be enough to play some games too and enough to do simple task. if you really want a 15inch get the low end with 128ram 8600 gt that would be way enough if you play some game and then save money from the 2.4 and max out the ram.
  14. skyrider007 macrumors 65816


    Aug 5, 2007
  15. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    Difference is minimal. http://www.barefeats.com/rosa03.html Definitely NOT worth $500.
  16. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Dec 6, 2007
    Bad idea. When the 2.8ghz comes out, your MBP's going to be old whether you bought the 2.2 or the 2.4. As I always say, imagine if someone started a thread today talking about how much better the 1.67ghz Powerbook is compared to the 1.5ghz Powerbook. We'd laugh at the poor sap! Even though those computers were top of the line two years ago, the truth is, those two years have gone by and given us much better technology.

    It doesn't make a twit's difference if some guy got a 1.67 or a 1.5 Powerbook; compared to today's stuff, they're exactly the same machines. The difference is that the 1.67 dude probably paid a few hundred dollars more for the privilege of those puny megahertz. In contrast, the 1.5 guy would now have a few hundred dollars more to buy an up to date computer. In the mean time, both people probably never used more than 1/3rd of that processing power to do 99% of the stuff they did--the way most people today won't use more than 1.5ghz the overwhelming majority of the time, regardless of how much they plunk down for the extra speed.

    So don't buy the slightly-better-specced model over the regular one for these kinds of reasons. It's lame now, and it'll look even lamer once the machines are superseded. I keep saying it because it's true: once it's old, it's old. That doesn't mean it's useless, but it does mean you won't have any practical advantages with one machine over the other. You'll just have a lighter wallet.
  17. socamx macrumors 6502

    Oct 7, 2004
    heatmiser has exactly my point and the benchmarks KingYaba posted further my point. I bet when the new one comes out, the benchmarks will show very little difference between 2.2 or 2.4 verses 2.8 or whatever the final GHz will be. (I'm not even sure why everyone even speculates a 2.8, I can see a 2.4, 2.6 and a 2.8 BTO option.)

    Speculating beyond that, the new ones aren't going to be "leaps and bounds faster" than the current ones, just like the previous MBPs with C2D processors aren't slouches just because of the Santa Rosa chipset.

    Day to day experience will be *exactly* the same, the only difference you may see is a 2 to 5 frames per second increase in games, but what does that matter if you're already getting a playable framerate? (playable meaning steady 40 fps or better)

    There is no reason to upgrade to 2.4 GHz unless you are just made of money and don't have anything better to spend it on, or if you want "Bragging Rights" on your purchase.
  18. azhelkov macrumors member

    May 31, 2005
    The truth is all your super/duper Intel Books (and mine too) in real world running at 800MHz most of the time. Don't believe me? install any CPU clock monitoring app and see for yourself. I've seen highest performance on my 2.4 SR MBP only once - running GeekBench. After Intel introduced SpeedStep technology, all their processors simply overrated. Because this technology not allowed CPU run at full speed (or near) more then few sec. In these few seconds the temp jump to 75-80ºC and CPU downgrade itself to stabilize it. Real life example - streaming HD video in progressive scan - video hiccups but speed stays 1800 or lower. I read similar complains within audio production guys too. Moreover, Apple did not give us any tool or manual adjustment probably because some genius decided that battery life is more important then performance. For simple typing and web surfing it's great technology, but don't expect anything near top performance when you really need it. In this respect 2.2 or 2.4 (or even 2.8) does not make any difference. GPU is another story.
  19. nerdbert macrumors regular


    Nov 7, 2007
    Berlin, Germany
    Apple always gives you lots of reasons to spend way more on some minor spec upgrades. From my personal buying history I can tell that they are extremely good at this (12" PB instead of iBook, black MacBook instead of white, 8 Gb iPhone instead of 4 and so on)

    Last month was the first time I resisted and bought the cheaper 15" MBP.
    CPU and HDD don't really matter to me (clock cycles don't matter that much and HDDs can be replaced), but it really bugged me that it only comes with 128 Mb RAM for the gfx. Not that it makes so much difference, but it just feels kind of wrong to artificially castrate such a powerful card by not equipping it properly. To make a long story short: Reason won for the first time. I'm not paying 25% more for a fps speedup between 0-5%*. I'll rather max out the RAM and buy a 500 Gb internal drive when they come out.

    *Ok, this number is rather arbitrary. Most games available today do not use more than 128 Mb for textures, so they don't run faster. However, many cool new releases do feature larger textures and cuts in speed vary from mild to very drastic slowdowns. So it really depends on what kind of games you want to play.
  20. chrisgohcs macrumors member


    Nov 10, 2007
    actually if you just need the power of a macbook,but wants a 15 inch screen you can buy an external monitor. connect ur macbook to it and phooft! you have both the large screen and macbook.

    just my two cents worth.
  21. EvryDayImShufln macrumors 65816


    Sep 18, 2006
    Tons of people these days aren't realistic with themselves about what they need and what they should be spending. Like my dad, who has a 250 gig external drive for each computer yet only has a total of maybe 10 gigabytes of files to back up. I try to reason, but he doesn't listen.

    Anyhow, I occasionally play games yet I still got the 2.2ghz model. The reason is because the difference between the 2 is very, very small. Don't waste your money. Plus the 2.2 will give you slightly longer battery life as well since the processor isn't as demanding.
  22. QCassidy352 macrumors G4


    Mar 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    Not true. In a couple of years the high end model will be just as much faster than the low end as it is now. Benchmark the two of them 2 years from now and you'll see the same difference you see today. The fact that there will be newer ones that are significantly faster than either of them has no more bearing on the difference between them than does the fact today's mac pros are way faster then either of them.

    That said, the difference, today or in two years, is not $500, at least not to the great majority of people.
  23. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Dec 6, 2007
    I agree with you that one has a higher top speed than the other; I'm just saying it won't matter today since most folks will never approach that speed limit, and it won't matter tomorrow because the cars will just keep getting faster. Hence the 1.67 Powerbook vs. 1.5 Powerbook analogy. Will the 1.67 still benchmark faster than the 1.5? Sure! Will it make a difference in day to day usage? Nope. Will it preserve the computer from becoming outdated? Nope. It's only been two years, but they're already blown out of the water. Heck, they were blown out of the water less than a year later when the first core duos came out. It'll be the same thing with the 2.2 and the 2.4: no observable diff in normal use, and no protection against the future once faster processors are on the scene.

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