Is it worth it?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mrcourt123, May 21, 2009.

  1. mrcourt123 macrumors member

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    Jan 16, 2008
    #1
    I'm guessing this has been asked 1,000 times, but here goes...

    I'm going back to college after a 5 year year break and need a laptop. I am fairly well versed in the world of Apple, as this will be my 3rd Mac, but first laptop. So my question is, should I drop an extra $400 or so to go for the 15 inch MBP, or go the less expensive route and opt for the higher end MacBook?

    I like the idea of having a bigger screen, but I don't run very demanding programs so I don't know what other real benefit I will get from buying the MBP. Is the extra money worth it? What other benefits will I get from upgrading if I'm not running much other than Safari, iLife applications, DVD ripping software, and other non-demanding stuff? This may be trivial, but are the speakers any better? My fiance's MacBook barely fills a room with sound, they're pretty pathetic.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #2
    All laptop speakers are pathetic. If you can put up with the smaller screen, the MacBook is plenty for your needs.
     
  3. Yodgee macrumors member

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    Mar 5, 2009
    #3
    I picked my high end macbook up for university. You'd be suprised with what they can handle. It Never slows up and im constantly ripping dvds, converting video files, using engineering programs and having tonnes of applications running at once with no hiccups. Even punish some decent games when using windows via bootcamp. I went for the portability of the macbook over the pro. Never looked backed
     
  4. k2spitfire88 macrumors 6502

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    #4
    The aluminum MB speakers are a significant improvement over the plastic MB speakers. I would say go with the MB, and upgrade the RAM. The graphics card is pretty good, and if you don't need all that power, it isn't worth it, when you get similar performance from a less expensive machine, IMHO.
     
  5. mrcourt123 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 16, 2008
    #5
    It sounds like the extra 2" of screen space is not worth the $400+ I would have to spend. Glad to hear the speakers have improved since the plastic MB.

    Now that I'll be a poor college student again, maybe I can put that extra $400 towards, oh I don't know, food and/or electricity...
     
  6. jmann macrumors 604

    jmann

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    #6
    Yeah go for the regular MacBook. Unless you really want to fork out extra for the light up keyboard, I would get the 2.0Ghz and save some money. That is the one I have, and it runs everything I do great. You said yourself, you have almost no reason for a Pro.
     
  7. k2spitfire88 macrumors 6502

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    #7
    At least the Aluminum MB will keep you electrical costs down - http://www.apple.com/macbook/environment.html
    :D (i realize the MBP does it too, but this is cheaper)
     
  8. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

    Joined:
    May 27, 2006
    #8
    You should go for the 2.0GHz aluminium model. The 2.4GHz model is a complete waste of money - the hard drive is only slightly larger (and can be upgraded later if you need to) and the processor has been shown in benchmarks to be only slightly faster than the cheaper machine.

    I believe that the 2.4GHz model is one of the worst value notebooks on the market from any company today. People who buy it are sucked in by the backlit keyboard (Apple is well known for using cheap tricks like this to encourage buyers to pay more for very little extra, for further evidence see the case of Combo Drives) but how many of them actually ever use their machines when there is no other light source available?

    Actually, the aluminium MacBook speakers are the same as the previous two generations of plastic MacBook speakers. Apple made a significant upgrade to the speakers when it released new MacBooks in 2007 and they have been the same ever since.
     
  9. macgrl macrumors 65816

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    #9
    Unless you want the extra screen space go for the MB:)
     
  10. eyefoniac macrumors 6502

    eyefoniac

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    #10
    IMO, go for the Macbook if you do not absolutely require the extra screen real estate, firewire ports, a 7200 rpm hdd, and the extra processor boost.

    It is a big price jump in between the MB and MBP, but if you need the extra "umph" then go for it, but if not, the MB should suit you well.
     
  11. macgrl macrumors 65816

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    #11
    If you do find after time that you need extra screen space you could always get an external monitor :)
     
  12. eyefoniac macrumors 6502

    eyefoniac

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    #12
    Very true, good point.
     
  13. mrcourt123 thread starter macrumors member

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    #13
    Is there an easy way to connect a MB to my current iMac? I have a 17" Intel Core Duo.
     
  14. eyefoniac macrumors 6502

    eyefoniac

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    #14
    As far as this goes, the only thing I can currently think of is a program called "screen recycler". It isn't freeware, but I am not sure of its current cost. It has been a while since I have looked into it.
     
  15. mrcourt123 thread starter macrumors member

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    #15
    No option for a direct connection through a cable?
     
  16. macgrl macrumors 65816

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    #17
    Not that I know of. Sorry
     
  17. mrcourt123 thread starter macrumors member

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    #18
    Are you saying an illuminated keyboard isn't worth $182?:rolleyes:
     
  18. k2spitfire88 macrumors 6502

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    #19
    My bad. All I know is that my roommate at college heard the sound out of my Aluminum MB (compared to his Blackbook, which was 2006 I believe) and was astounded at the sound quality.
     
  19. mrcourt123 thread starter macrumors member

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    #20
    How are MacBooks connected to Apple LCD Displays?
     
  20. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #21
    You can hook pretty well any display up the the MB with the right connector. The problem with the iMac is that there is no direct way to get to the monitor. You need something like Screen Recycler to use it. Better off selling the iMac and buying a decent monitor, IMO.
     
  21. bigdaddyp macrumors regular

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    Aug 19, 2008
    #22
    Connect to a monitor..

    New aluminum macbooks will connect to a monitor using a minidisplayport connection. Older macbooks used minidvi. As long as you have the proper connection or adapter the macbook can drive almost any display.

    If you have a LCD iMac you can not use it as a monitor as it does not have any connections that allow it to be used that way. However, there are third party solutions that will let you accomplish that.

    Hope this helps.
     
  22. Insulin Junkie macrumors 65816

    Insulin Junkie

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    #23
    Depends on the person using it. I'm good at typing in the dark, even without illuminated keys, so it wouldn't be worth it to me. Since the price difference between the two models is 300$, I'd say the minor speed bump (that I don't need because the programs I use - final cut express, aperture 2 and Adobe CS run extremely well on the 2.0) and the illuminated keyboard aren't worth it. Each to their own though, obviously.
     
  23. Chronos1976 macrumors newbie

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    May 20, 2009
    #24
    It's worth mentioning the screen quality on the macbook pro is better than the macbook. Plus that illuminated keyboard is useful in dark lecture theatres.
     
  24. KBV1 macrumors regular

    KBV1

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    Dec 22, 2007
    #25
    I have to agree because i was gonna be sucked in by it but i have thought is it really worth another £196? If there is no real difference between th 2.0 and 2.4 i think ill be going with the 2.0 i can always upgrade HDD in the future and also buy an external one.

    Talking about external HDD, if i put windows on that could u use bootcamp and run windows off the external one or not? Also i know there i the new OS coming out soon snow Leopard, will there be a much of a difference do you think between that and the current os Leopard? Was there a big differnce between Leopard and the previous os? Im just asking becasue i dont think i can wait until September for new models to come out. What you guys think?:rolleyes:
     

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