Macbook Pro: 13"[2.4 or 2.66] vs 15" [any speed]

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by philipt42, Jun 6, 2010.

  1. philipt42 macrumors 6502

    philipt42

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2009
    Location:
    RI
    #1
    Here's the situation: I'm going to use this computer for web browsing, music (over 70gb library in iTunes if that's a factor), video, and other general usage stuff (iPhoto, light iMovie editing). I may put on Windows 7 in order to run a few games, such as Age of Empires III. (anyone still play?:D) I'm confident that any laptop in the Apple lineup can handle those things.

    I also use Logic Pro 9 and occasionally MainStage to produce and record, as well as manage live music. Screen real estate is not a problem, as I have a 20" cinema display that is sufficient.

    My question is: 2.4 or 2.66 13" or a 15"? (Spring 2010 models)
    (I do need portability, as this will be used for school, ect:cool:)

    My budget will be determined at the end of the summer, but is likely to be close to $1500. I would like to take advantage of the student discount, but I can wait and save up a little more if necessary.

    Edit: don't worry, I read through the extensive threads that appeared on google before posting :D)
     
  2. kny3twalker macrumors 65816

    kny3twalker

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    #2
    Do you mean the back to school sale? Because Apple always has a student discount. The back to school promotion on the other hand gets you a free iPod touch in addition to the normal student discount.

    As far as laptops, the base 13 or base 15 are your best bet. The 2.66 GHz 13" is a complete rip off, and your $300 would be better spent on ram or a solid state drive.
    If the 15" is not too much for you to carry, the price is within your budget, and you need the extra processing power, the base 15 will be a very good option. It has discrete graphics and the newest generation laptop processors versus the 13" models which use integrated graphics and the last generation processors.
     
  3. philipt42 thread starter macrumors 6502

    philipt42

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2009
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    RI
    #3
    I didn't know that about the back to school, thanks.:)

    Regarding the processing power, that was the point of my thread. I want to know if anyone can recommend 13" or 15" based the fact that I need to use Logic and MainStage.
     
  4. AlphaDogg macrumors 68040

    AlphaDogg

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Location:
    Boulder, CO
    #4
    I have a 2.4GHz 13" MacBook Pro. It is really the sweet spot for me. It is the right mix of performance and portability. I have a 19" display (what can I say, I'm cheap!) that I hook it up to at home. If you have an external display, I would recommend the 13" 2.4GHz MBP. If you do not, I would recommend a 15" i5 MBP. The 2.66GHz 13" MBP is not much more powerful than the 2.4GHz 13" MBP. But the baseline i5 is MUCH more powerful than the baseline Core 2 Duo, but for what you're going to be doing I do not think it is necessary to have that power. The ratio of power and portability in the 13" MBP is perfect.
     
  5. iSpoody 1243 macrumors 6502

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    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Australia
    #5
    really depends on your budget and portability requirements.
    I personally think if your gonna be carrying it allot the 13" may be a better bet.
    cheaper, lighter.
    unless you really want an i5 cpu or a dedicated gpu the 13" would suit you better.
    The base model is the one to get.
     
  6. kny3twalker macrumors 65816

    kny3twalker

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    #6
    I think either the base 13 or base 15 are fine for you, just do not waste your money on the upgraded 13. That $300 can be better spent.

    The back to school promotion lasts until early September normally.
     
  7. elpmas macrumors 68000

    elpmas

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2009
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    Where the fresh snow don't go.
    #7
    Like many said already, base model 13" or 15" is a safe bet :]
    I'm going to upgrade mine soon and get a 15" baseline, just because of the i5 ^_^
     
  8. gwsat macrumors 68000

    gwsat

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    Apr 12, 2008
    Location:
    Tulsa
    #8
    I agree that the base model 13 inch MBP makes far better sense than the one that costs $300 more. That $300 gets you only a marginal bump in processor speed and hard drive size, neither of which would make any real difference in your user experience.
     
  9. djasterix macrumors 6502a

    djasterix

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    #9
    Just get the 15" base model and you will be fine, and if your budget is low, just get it with BTS and sell the iTouch...
     
  10. dsprimal macrumors 6502a

    dsprimal

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2010
    #10
    agreed with the statement above. just get the base 15" mbp and you'll be fine. still portable and packs a punch worth of power. more then the 13" of course.
     
  11. Lunchb0x8 macrumors 6502a

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    May 2, 2010
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    Aberglasslyn, NSW, AU
    #11
    My 13" 2.4 should be arriving in the next two days, it looks like it will handle my computing needs, I want to be able to remote-admin work, watch/listen to media, play the odd game and have a go at a bit of programming.

    This looks like it should handle my needs, just need to wait for it to put my theory to the test.
     
  12. Ronnoco macrumors 68030

    Ronnoco

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    Location:
    United States of America
    #12
    I don't think there is a better Bang-For-Your-Buck in the MBP lineup than the base 15...;)
    Upgrade the HD yourself and you have one killer little machine...:D
     
  13. djasterix macrumors 6502a

    djasterix

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    #13
    +1
     
  14. leosaysfosho macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    California
    #14
    I'm kind of in between with the 13" 2.4 or 2.66...I'm seeing a lot of people saying to just get the base. Can anyone tell me why it's better to get the base? Perhaps if I end up having extra money which parts would you recommend me getting?
     
  15. aigoya macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    #15
    I personally like the 13" better than the 15". If I had to go back to school, i'd definitely pick the 13". Get the base 13", saving $(600??) from the 15".

    Portability is up to you, even though the 15" is 1lb heavier, I thought that it felt noticeably much much heavier than the 13". (I use a murse, a regular backpack would feel more negligible i assume).

    Also you stated you have an external monitor.. another + for the 13" in my book.

    Good luck with your decision!
     
  16. philipt42 thread starter macrumors 6502

    philipt42

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2009
    Location:
    RI
    #16
    Thanks for all your input...

    Does anyone have any personal experience running Logic/MainStage on either of the base 2010 models?

    Also, how is the value of the 15" 2CD machines holding up? If I able to find one on ebay for the same price as the 13" (2010), would it be worth it?
     
  17. EHVio macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 13, 2010
    #17
    I would personally recommend going for the 15" Unibody, if you're going to be running DAWs and sorts... It sounds like you'll be running virtual instruments and plug-ins and sorts.... If that's the case, the processor is not your biggest worry. Plug-ins are RAM hogs; I'd suggest going with the base 15" unibody simply for the fact that you'll be able to expand to 8GB if you need to.
     
  18. Adidas Addict macrumors 65816

    Adidas Addict

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    England
    #18
    The 13" can take 8GB
     
  19. gwsat macrumors 68000

    gwsat

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    Apr 12, 2008
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    Tulsa
    #19
    The 13 inch MBP has two RAM slots, too. Thus, the 13 inch can be upgraded to 8Gb of RAM as easily as the 15 inch MBP can. In any event, I agree that additional RAM is far more important than the speed of the processor in many applications.
     
  20. djasterix macrumors 6502a

    djasterix

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    #20
    Base 13" with 8Gb RAM and SSD is a killer system, blazing fast.
     
  21. gwsat macrumors 68000

    gwsat

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    Apr 12, 2008
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    Tulsa
    #21
    I came within a whisker of buying a base 13 inch MBP, upgrading its RAM to 8Gb, and substituting an SSD for the standard driven. The only reason I didn't do it is that I still haven't quite given up on the notion that Apple will somehow, someway, update the MBA. I know, I know, but hope springs eternal.:)
     
  22. Ramphex macrumors 6502

    Ramphex

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    USA/PA
    #22
    might as well go with newer processors, 15 inch it is
     
  23. RedRaven571 macrumors 65816

    RedRaven571

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    Mar 13, 2009
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #23
    I opted for a late 2008 model 15" MBP (with 256MB nVidia 9600GT) from ebay for about the same amount of $$ a new 13" base MBP (with 320m) would cost (~ $1150); I'm using it for home video editing and I'm very satisfied with my decision.
     
  24. ChrisWeissPhoto macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2010
    #24
    RAM vs Processor...

    Hey guys, I'm in the market for a new computer as well, and I figured it could go under this discussion.

    I can't really compare the two computers because I don't have the experience with how fast a processor generally is. I don't have the experience for what a baseline processor is to judge how good one is over another. I just know more usually means better :) However, I could use some help deciding on a laptop.

    This laptop will probably have to last me the next 4+ years, as that is what this laptop has lasted me (currently a Dell Inspiron E1705 w/ 2gb RAM... don't even ask me on the processor, etc.).

    I'm a photographer (hey, my name... go figure) and I do mainly photo-processing. The Adobe bunch - Photoshop CS4, some (rarely) Illustrator, and especially Lightroom 3 (here I could use a lot of boost in power and rendering). Besides this, I'll use my computer to watch videos and movies and I'll by an external monitor to watch them on.

    So question: can someone help me understand the differences between the 13" and 15". I understand the processors are different (but I wouldn't be able to state what a Core 2 Duo is vs. the i5) and that the graphics cards are different, but HOW much different are they? Do I need at least the low end 15" for my photographic endeavors (not to mention processing RAW files).

    More over - could I get by with a 13" and 8GB of RAM? From all I've read it sounds like I could use the i5 and the automatic graphics switching, but I'd like a less expensive computer and a smaller one. I just need help understanding the power differences between the 2. Because I'm looking at the 15" baseline w/ 8GB ram or the higher 13" with 8gb - or maybe just the base 13" w/ a 500gb harddrive since the extra ghz doesn't seem to matter.

    So... is the 15" overkill for what I need and the 13" w/ 8gb RAM fine, or am I better suited to just go ahead with the 15"? Sorry if this seems long and convoluted, but ANY help would be very appreciated.

    Cheers!

    Also, I'll probably install Windows. Just FYI, in case that affects much.
     
  25. runebinder macrumors 6502a

    runebinder

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    #25
    Both 13" and 15" will probably be able to handle what you want to do, the 15" will be able to do it in less time.

    The differences between core 2 Duo vs i5/i7 core. i5/7 supports hyper-threading, which means the computer will see 4 cores, 2 real and 2 virtual. Once apps start becoming common that make use of this the i5s and i7s will be much faster than the C2D.

    Also i5/7s have turbo boost so in single threaded apps they can turn off one core and automatically overclock the remaining one. The i5 2.4GHz will go as high as 2.93, the i5 2,53GHz will go as high as 3.06GHz and the i7 2.66GHz will go to 3.33GHz.

    So if you're planning on it lasting on 4 years, the C2D in the 13" will still be able to last but will not age as well as the i5/7s.
     

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