Is the 13" MPB enough for me?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Steffz07, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. Steffz07 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2009
    #1
    So, my dad wants to get me a laptop for the start of the new school year. For Year 11. I want a Mac. After years of Windows use and the fiasco that was Vista, I decided that i would make the switch to Macs. Several people already suggested Macs so what the hell.

    I need to know if the 13" will be enough to suit my needs. I will mostly be using it for word processing, music, watching movies/tv shows, surfing, gaming and video converting.

    I use Handbrake to convert videos for my iPhone and other stuff.
    At the most the games i will be playing are Warcraft III, Counter-Strike: Source, COD:MW2.
    I dont really like to stinge on graphics and use low settings. I was planning to get the 15" MPB 2.53 Ghz but im paying like $500 extra for 2 inches of screen.
    I also decided to get the 13" instead so that come 2 or 3 years when Ivy Bridge or the next super awesome breakthru processors are out i can trade mine in and buy the latest one to carry me thru uni or whatever.

    I noe that the new Arrandale processors are coming out Q1 2010 and i plan to wait for them. Im in no hurry, school starts 27th Jan. And i really hope that Apple puts a discrete GPU in the 13" cos i would hate to have crappy Intel graphics. And i might be mistaken, but from what ive read the Integrated GPU that Intel is using in Arrandale is WORSE than the nVidia 9400m?? That just sounds like a bad deal for future 13" MPB users wishing to convert?

    So what do you think? Is the 13" MPB suitable for my needs.

    P.S. I was planning to get the 2.53Ghz 13" MPB (i couldnt live with 2GB RAM and 150GB HDD[well thats as things stand ATM, jan could bring many changes])

    Cheers
    Stef
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    #2
    We cannot answer if the new arrandale based macbooks will suffice for you're needs but given that you stated that you like to play games, working with video and such. I'm going to say that the integrated GPU may not be the best fit for your needs.

    While more expensive, I think the dual GPU 15" MBP would work better for you and if you do get the 13". Everytime something isn't moving as fast as you want, you'll be wondering (or kicking yourself) if you'd be better of with the 15" MBP
     
  3. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

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    #3
    Everything you listed, except MW2 (I have it on 360) I do on my 2.26 13"MBP. You're gonna want to upgrade to 4gb of ram and possibly a bigger harddrive but other than that it should be perfect for you. I don't really think the upgrade to the 2.53 would make it noticeably faster, however if I could have waited for the refresh I would have. See what the next update has to offer then make your decision from there.
     
  4. Steffz07 thread starter macrumors member

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    Dec 18, 2009
    #4
    @mafflyn

    Cost is a pretty big factor, to my dad. Hehe. Hes sorta paying for it. Well he said that he would get me what i NEED (school stuff =P) and if i wanted to upgrade more then i would have to pay the balance. I actually have AU$1000 saved up for the 'balance'. But i was just thinking that if i get a Dual GPU 15" now then when Ivy Bridge and stuff come out in 3 years time my dad prolly wouldnt pay for me to get the new one. Altho by then i should be paying for my own stuff aye. Ah well. I shall see.

    @reebzor

    I have MW2 on my 360 as well. But im boarding in 2011 until uni. And i wont have my 360 or a desktop. Just my laptop. Im probably wrong, but wouldnt adding HDD and RAM just increase the price? Wouldnt it be more worthwhile for me to just get the 2.53Ghz?

    Edit: Can i get the Education Discount while im in High School? off the record/ on the record?

    *wink*
     
  5. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #5
    The 13.3" will be fine for everything you've listed apart from COD:MW2, or other such current games. If you want to run that you'll need the 15" with the dual graphics, or a PC laptop.
     
  6. powerbook911 macrumors 68040

    powerbook911

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #6
    Yeah newer games will have a harder time on the integrated graphics, but otherwise the 2.53 machine is a real winner. I just purchased one for my mum.

    I think it would be a solid choice, unless the new games are really important to you.

    Maybe there will be an update and you'll have other options, but no one knows yet. Good luck with the decision.
     
  7. Thunder82 macrumors 6502

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    Jul 16, 2008
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    Chicago, IL
    #7
    Your getting a bit more than just 2 inches of screen.. a dedicated GPU with 256/512MB is included in that price difference.

    If money is a big factor, look at the refurbished machines. I've bought a few and every one has been 100% mint.
     
  8. shambo macrumors 6502a

    shambo

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    #8
    Future proof your investment. See my sig for further details.
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #9
    Your sig as no further details other then stating that 2" is future proof.
     
  10. XxEjGxX macrumors regular

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    #10
    for the gaming, maybe the 15, that being said, if your not a serious gamer, it will be fine [​IMG] i play cod4 on mine fine
     
  11. Fordy macrumors newbie

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    Dec 5, 2009
    #11
    That was the joke..
     
  12. AppleNewton macrumors 68000

    AppleNewton

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    #12
    i like the 13" their screens actually are not too bad to use.
    i picked one up not too long ago as my main "ultra portable" notebook and love it.
    so far it handles everything I throw at it. im trying out win7 and L4D2 on it.
    and using logic 9, handbrake to encode a batch of DVDs.
    all on the base configuration 2gb 160gb 2.26 and it handled it well.

    I'm probably going to upgrade it to 4gb for now, really would like 8GB but waiting for the prices to drop some.
    Also throw in a 640GB or a SSD.


    the only reason I went to a 13" MBP is im either selling the 17" and grabbing an i7 iMac or just going to have it as a companion to my 17" which is a great machine as is, so no need for me to waste the $ on the faster CPU and included 250 or 4gb upgrades.

    The display on this little notebook is incredible too.


    I think you ll be happy with whatever one you get.
    these machines are solid all around.
     
  13. Gabriel GR macrumors 6502a

    Gabriel GR

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    #13
    Unfortunately it was not.
     
  14. darngooddesign macrumors G3

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    Atlanta, GA
  15. TheWelshBoyo macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Don't worry. We all laugh at shambo and his retarded idea of future proofing.
    One minute, it's the extra 2" (even though it's 2.1", but don't tell shambo!), the next, it's the already out of date 9600GT (not that it's a bad card), next it's any other little thing he can think of. Shambo, face it. You're thick. It's not future proofed in any way. One word for you: Arrandale!
    Anyway, I think Apple will take the 13" as a Pro machine seriously this time round. It has to include a proper discrete graphics card, otherwise they'll have to re-rebrand it as a higher end MacBook. I mean, that would sorta make sense. Sorta. Because then they can have the three tier MacBook again and go back to the 15" and 17" being the Pro machines. Although, while the top end MacBook's would have a better processor, their graphics chip would suck.
    I think the only thing Apple can do now, is to give the 13" a discrete graphics card to keep it as a Pro/contender for the 13" MacBook.
    Anyway though, I think whatever happens, the next MacBook Pro 13" will be perfect for your needs, based upon the rather obvious (I hope) thought that it'll be better than the current one. The current one would suit the vast majority of your needs. With a dedicated graphics card that's better than the 9400m, it should be able to handle MW2.
     
  16. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

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    #16
    Yea, except that buying a 4gb kit from apple costs a ton more than anywhere else, same with the harddrive. I upgraded to 4gb and a 500gb harddrive for something like $160. Apple would charge you $300 for that upgrade and you dont have the option to use/sell the stuff you took out of it.

    Although it would be nice if they did that, think back to the 12" powerbook.

    If you do the comparison, the 13" MBP fits in right where it's supposed to. The 12" PB was a slightly more powerful/aluminum ibook.
     
  17. Gabriel GR macrumors 6502a

    Gabriel GR

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    #17
    Unless the power consumption of the GPU is really scalable like the CPU, I really don't want a more powerful, more hungry GPU. At least not as standard.
     
  18. Dan73 macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 30, 2009
    #18
    The MBP can do all that proficiently except for gaming.

    First of all the GPU are a bit... weak

    and OS X obviously has many less games than Windows

    You might want to consider getting a windows laptop from another company and you'll get more bang for your buck...
     
  19. TheWelshBoyo macrumors 6502

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    #19
    I really don't think Apple would be stupid enough to give an Intel IGP to the MacBook PRO yet have the 9400M in the MacBook!
     
  20. TheWelshBoyo macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Or, since people like Mac's for the OS, they can dual boot into Windows for the games and use OS X for everything else.
    So what if OS X doesn't have as many games? If you're gaming, yet want a Mac, then you dual boot. Simples!
     
  21. EnigMoiD macrumors member

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    Aug 10, 2007
    #21
    Speaking from experience (on my own machine), I can say that MW2 plays fantastic on the 2.53 13" in Boot Camp. I don't know what all these guys are talking about - it plays great with all settings high (No AA) at 960*600, and even at 1280*800, though there it sometimes gets a bit choppy.

    I'm almost in your situation (a year behind) and I have to say that the 2.53 13" MBP is an awesome machine. The screen is great, it's fast for everything I throw at it, and whenever I need to take it places, the extra weight is nothing. I've also used Handbrake, and it encoded a 2 and a half hour movie in a little over 20 minutes. It amazed me.

    The only thing is that if you try to throw some AAA titles at it like Crysis or some newer games (MW2 excluded) you might be disappointed, but I say save the money for other things, especially if you already have an Xbox.

    Edit: If you don't feel like getting the RAM from Apple, you can always get it cheaper from Crucial later, but in the end the 4 gig total will be worth it.
     
  22. Maserati7200 macrumors 6502a

    Maserati7200

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    #22
    I'm pretty sure the 12" PB had a discrete GPU...
     
  23. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502

    Wehrwolf

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    #23
    I'm sure this has been discussed to death in the "Waiting for Arrandale" thread, but one could speculate that Apple will only upgrade their high end notebooks (those with current discrete GPUs) with Arrandale and an update GPU, but leave the lower end models (including the Macbook) with Core 2/9400M for the time being.

    It did...
     
  24. Shaduu macrumors 6502a

    Shaduu

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    #24
    It was only discrete because no one made integrated chips for PowerPC.

    Not discounting the 12" PowerBook, mind. I loved mine.
     
  25. TheWelshBoyo macrumors 6502

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    #25
    Yes, but the MacBook Pro 13" is now part of the high end notebook, hence why it was given the name 'Pro'.
    Two reasons I'm guessing Apple didn't give it the 9600 is because:
    A) They could get away with it, the 9400M being beefy compared to Intel Integrated Graphics. And, they're Apple. :p What they say goes.
    B) Size constraints.
    I think in the next generation, the MacBook Pro 13" has to be upgraded to Arrandale, as no-one will take it seriously otherwise and will get the MacBook.
    If they were to go down that route, they'd have to give the MBP 13" a HEEEE-YOOOOOOOOGE spec boost, for anyone to even begin to consider it over the MacBook.
    What I think Apple will do: Arrandale the (entire) Pro line, including the 13" Pro, to further make it deserving of the Pro tag, while leaving the others (Mac Mini, MacBook) hanging on Core 2 for the moment.
    Also, they'd have to give the entire Pro line dedicated graphics. Not just the 15" or 17". It makes little sense for Apple to've developed OpenCL just to throw it away by not letting even a low-end Pro machine use it. It just doesn't make sense. Even the extra computing power in the processor wouldn't make up for it. And how would Apple spin it, considering they very well publicised the 9400M as being 4-5X better than previous Intel Integrated Graphics?
    "This Intel GMA chip is 3x better than previous graphics*!
    *Previous graphics means Intel GMA X3100 in previous Macs, not the Nvidia 9400M."
    See, there's no way to spin it into being good. Fair enough if they had a switchable discrete solution, then they could spin it as saying
    "Use powerful graphics to do graphic-y stuff, then switch to integrated when you're not! The discrete graphics card will STILL be usable for OpenCL!"
    That would be made of win, if Apple were to do something like that. It's the only thing that makes sense.
    Also, what about the (in my opinion, BS) rumours about Apple rejecting Arrandale's graphics chip? What if AppleArrandale does come without Intel GMA? Then, Apple will be forced, by themselves, to use discrete chips throughout their entire computer line. I could see why they'd do this though.
    Then, they could start bragging about how even their consumer computer has discrete graphics capabilities. Anyway, </rant>.
     

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