Is a macbook right for me? (Yes, another one lol)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Abisco, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. Abisco, Apr 18, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2011

    Abisco macrumors newbie

    Mar 2, 2011
    Hi there,
    I'm currently a computer science student at the University of Toronto, and after going through my first year with my HP Pavillion dv6000 I have to say that I need a new laptop. My current one is admittedly slow at times when running some programs I write, and I feel like I'm fighting with Vista way too often for it to do something...

    Anyways, my parents recently got a $1,200 voucher for any laptop at Best buy, and I've been contemplating what laptop to get for school next year, though we don't mind putting down more money for a laptop if it is a lot better! It's important I get the best laptop that is available for my needs. I guess its almost important to note that I take an hour and a half commute everyday, so doing work on my lap would be useful.

    The laptop will mostly be used for programming, some gaming, web surfing, and watching a lot of videos. I will be using my laptop A LOT, and as such need something which is fast, comfortable, and doesn't give me too many problems. I currently have an xbox360 but I plan on selling it soon too, so gaming on my laptop will be important... I dont need the best graphics, but I do want to be able to play upcoming games such as Mass Effect 3, Elder Scrolls Skyrim, Guild wars 2, and the likes. But yeah, I guess in general gaming is pretty important to me, especially if this will be my main gaming device.

    I was looking at the High end 15'' for a while, given that I must pick a laptop from (Canadian) Best buy, it seems like that laptop is the best for gaming, portability, and overall productivity! Though I have never had a macbook, but from what I hear it isn't hard to get used to it.

    Anyone can give me any more information on whether I should get this laptop, or something else?
    On a side note, many of my professors use MacBooks, I do plan on dual booting as well, so OS isnt really an issue, and compatibility should be fine. I also plan on starting some coding for the App Store soon... so having a macbook would be necessary for that

    Anyways thanks in advance, I hope I was thorough enough, and sorry for making yet another one of these threads!

  2. Alaerian Guest


    Jan 6, 2005
    A barstool, Innis & Gunn in hand
    It seems like gaming is the most important thing to you. If that is the case, you would be better suited buying a different brand.
  3. iMackPro macrumors 6502

    Mar 31, 2011
    well since youre dual booting and you want gaming, dont even think about going any less than the base 15. I have my compouter specs in my sig and theres nothing it cant do. I throw a lot at it too. Theres people on here that probably do a lot more than i do but my computer surely gets used for more than just facebook.

    The higher end 15" sounds like the comoputer you are going to need, but dont stop there, grab the 128 SSD option. its only 100$ and well worth it. If you need more space buy a time capsule or some kind of external HDD. Id wait on that though until the Thunderbolt devices launch, then youll have the best of both worlds.

    Also, the GPU in the higer in 15" is a really good card. It can handle just about any game on high settings. Crysis 2 struggles on Ultra i believe, but i think its still like 14-18 FPS.

    Upgrade your ram to 8 Gig. If you have the money and just want it done when you buy the computer (which is what i did) upgrade it right when you buy the computer. If youre good at working with computers (or would rather go 3rd party) buy 8 gigs from another source, if you do it this way you can buy 1600Mhz RAM instead of the 1333. Completely up to you.

    DO NOT GET A SD screen. you cant upgrade it later and you will be very sorry if you dont get it. Now if you want glossy or Anti glare thats up to you. i watch A LOT of movies so i went glossy and i love it. ill never own a Matte screen.

    Hope this helps.
  4. Abisco thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 2, 2011
    Hey thanks for fast reply, I noticed you said upgrading would be important, but if I buy a laptop from best buy then it will probably be the base high end since I dont think they have upgraded options, so on that note, will upgrading the ram and HD be really difficult to do?
  5. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    If you know how to use a screwdriver without poking yourself in the eye in the process, then yes, you can upgrade your hard drive and RAM yourself without fear. That's how easy it is on those shiny new Unibody macbook pros.

    As far as the matte vs glossy, it's a matter of preference, but to me a glossy screen is unusable, the reflexions bother me quite a bit, I'll never own a glossy screen'ed laptop, ever.
  6. Wanderer509 macrumors member

    Oct 28, 2007
    upgrading ram and hard drive are both documented in the manual provided by apple. Its pretty much a matter of taking off the back and swapping stuff out.
  7. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    If you want to game, I'd honestly say go windows. You can find gaming laptops out there with better GPUs and equivalent CPUs to the high end MBP for considerably less money, that will provide you with better gaming performance.
  8. aoaaron macrumors 6502

    Sep 4, 2010
    high end 15'' is perfect for you.

    hwoever, if you want super amazing graphics and future proofing in the gaming department to play on ultra settings etc. for the next 3-5 years or so, invest in a gaming desktop + then buy a netbook for portability for work/web browsing.

    i personally went for the high end 15'' cos like you, i dont mind if my graphics aren't super awesome. i also will only play around 5 video games per year.
  9. Icy1007 macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2011
    Cleveland, OH
    If you want a gaming laptop, go with a PC with Win7 on it. Win 7 >>> Win Vista.
  10. Icy1007 macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2011
    Cleveland, OH
    Portal 2 should run well on the high end 15" :) Best (Mac) game of the year!
  11. Abisco, Apr 18, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2011

    Abisco thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 2, 2011
    I've been looking at laptops for a while, and after getting the voucher for $1200 at best buy canada, I've been looking through so many laptops on their site, but none of them are really gamer orientated and able to get good battery life on them...

    And portal 2 is definitely something I want :D Aside from that though, I'll probably be playing a lot of older games. Unless its something from Bioware/Bethesda/Valve, its most likely going to pass under my radar... School is just too important, and really for summer I only plan on playing some older games such as Dragon Age: Origins, Star wars knights of the old republic... like my computer can barely play counter strike source anymore after the update which made it a bit more demanding... so really any computer better then mine is good, as long as its got good battery life, and can play games even on low with 30 fps.

    But I think I'm going to go for the MBP, and upgrade the ram + HD, maybe get a data doubler while I'm at it...

    Thanks everyone for your input!

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