Macbook Pro 15 2.66 or 2.8

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by harvy3317, Jan 9, 2010.

  1. harvy3317 macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2010
    Knoxville, TN
    First I want to say hello to everyone on MacRumors. I know what I am about to ask has probably been asked hundreds of times, so I am sorry but everyone's end users experience is different. Hopefully what I just said makes a little sense and the question/questions I am about to ask. So again forgive me if questions such as mine get a little old, like I said, everyone's end users experience is different.

    A little about myself and what I will do with the Macbook Pro 15 that I purchase. I am a musician on the side and amature photography on the side. Otherwise my Macbook Pro will be used for watching movies, web, email ect. Programs/Software I use are Cubase, Pro Tools, Photoshop, FruityLoops, Line 6 software and maybe a little amature Video editing (nothing pro). *This will be my first MacBook Pro or Apple Computer all together.

    **PLEASE, keep in mind this is a laptop I plan to use for the next 5 years or more. I like using a computer until its performance is beyond usable. lol. So if a laptop will take me 8 years then so be it but I would say in 5 years I might upgrade but maybe not.

    Macbooks Pro 15's considering: (Prices are from my favorite store B&H Photo)

    Macbook Pro 15 2.66GHz // 7200rpm HD // nVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT 256MB // 3MB Cache = $2149
    Macbook Pro 15 2.8GHz // 5400rpm HD // nVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT 512MB
    // 6MB cache = $2145
    Macbook Pro 15 2.8GHz // 7200rmp HD // nVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT 512MB
    // 6MB cache = $2349

    So be honest is the hard drive size really gonna be that different, I mean I can always upgrade the HD down the road and its not going to slow the process that much right? Plus I would love to have the 512 MB Graphics even though I will never use most of it. lol. AND what about the 2.66 and the 2.8? I mean its a $4 difference and the only different between the two 2.8 processors is the HD, so I can always upgrade that. So what does everyone think? Has anyone heard or know of one of these two or three being better then the other/others? I think honestly being smart would say buy the 2.8 with the 5400 HD and upgrade it later down the road right?

    Thank you to everyone and look forward to everyone's opinions, :)

  2. Artmuzz macrumors 6502

    Jun 17, 2008
    I would buy the 2.8Ghz MacBook Pro as it has larger L2 cache and faster Graphics card and go for the 72000rpm HD or buy it with the 54000rpm HD and install a 72000rpm HD later on.

    I make music and videos and recently bought the 2.8Ghz MacBook Pro and it is good.

    On the other hand you could wait for the new Arrandale MacBook Pros this year.

  3. coast1ja macrumors 6502

    Jul 13, 2009
    I would go with the 2.8 for the graphics card... 512 vs. 256. You can always pick up a cheap 7200rpm 500gb drive if you really want it for under $100. SSDs will be cheaper in the future too, so you may want to wait until those come down before you upgrade.

    If you plan on using it for 5-8 years, you might want to wait until the new models come out. It is expected in the next month, so I would wait if I were you.
  4. harvy3317 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2010
    Knoxville, TN
    But wont the Arrandale MacBook Pros be more costly? Because if so pretty much what the prices of that I have listed above is what I have and no more to spend. Now I know the i7 Processor sounds great but if an increase in price will happen then I will need to go with what I am looking at.

    Do you think it will raise the price of the Macbook Pros?

    And do you think they will lower the price on the ones I am looking at to get them out of stock so they will only have the new Arrandale Processors in stock? You know kinda get room for the new invetory and bring in the new?

    And when do they plan on bringing out the the new Arrandale Processors in the Macbook Pros?
  5. ammusk macrumors regular

    Oct 20, 2009
    I agree with the other posters and urge you to wait for the next update which is just around the corner, especially if you're going to use the computer for the next 5 years. The updates are due out this month or early next month.

    As for the question of price, I don't think the Arrandale MBPs will be costlier than the current MBPs. Also, Apple usually introduces updated products at the same or lower pricepoint of the previous generation.
  6. harvy3317 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2010
    Knoxville, TN
    so when is around the corner? and do you think places like B&H will have them in stock? Because I would like to get out of tax if possible. And can you explain what the wait would be over? What will be so great? Thanx
  7. ammusk macrumors regular

    Oct 20, 2009
    There is an Apple event on the 27th of January. Macbook Pros are expected to be updated at that event or even a few weeks before that.

    B&H should have it in stock once Apple releases them. I don't buy stuff from them though so I can't be sure. Maybe you can expect a week's delay at the most.

    Have you thought about glossy or matte screen? If you're going in for a matte option, then you will have to custom order it from Online Apple Store and not B&h.
  8. harvy3317 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2010
    Knoxville, TN
    So does anyone else have any ideas on what they think? And thank you to those who have responded.
  9. DoNoHarm macrumors 65816


    Oct 8, 2008
    go for the stock 2.66, not the one you have listed. then take your savings and apply it 2-3 years down the road on a SSD HD.
  10. takamine macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2007
    If you can wait a few weeks, then do that since rumours of new MBP are coming out.

    Usually I say get the best you can afford now. So just depends on how soon you need it.

    I purchased the 2.8GHz model and don't regret it. Sure it was a few hundred dollars more, but it's nice to know you have the top model. Has worked flawlessly for me. No use buying something cheaper and then wishing you bought something better later on.
  11. harvy3317 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2010
    Knoxville, TN
    So you think the 2.66 version would be good enough?

    I mean the 2.8 is only $200 more, so would it not be smart to have a better processor and plus better graphics and then down the road update the hard drive to SSD?

    I mean you cannot upgrade the processor or graphics now right?

    I plan on getting this laptop in the first week of March. This is going to be a birthday present from my fiance.

    So what do we think now? And oh if the new MBP are the same price as now then I may jump on one of those. That is if they come out before the first week of March. And that is only if they sort of stay with the same looks. I think the current MBP's are some of the sexiest ever.

    One more thing what does everyone think of the Speck Hardshell cases? Do any of you use them and are they really that needed?

    This will be my first Mac so Im really excited and have always loved them.
  12. takamine macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2007
    I guess it depends what you do. If you don't do any gaming or hardcore video editing, then the 2.66GHz should be sufficient for you.

    But you do have a point. You can't upgrade the processor and video card so you might as well get the best that you think you need/afford.

    If you're waiting till March, the new models should be out soon so you might as well wait.

    I also opted for the Matte screen on mine. Personal preference really.
  13. ammusk macrumors regular

    Oct 20, 2009
    Speck Hardshell cases? I personally think they're a waste of money. I have the Incase Neoprene Sleve which is sufficient and acts like a cushion.
  14. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    That's what I would do. I opt for the fastest components that I cannot buy after market, i.e., CPU/GPU. I then add memory or HD as needed down the road.

    Correct, you're locked in at that point

    Who knows when they come out but I'd lay good money that apple will not make any drastic changes to the current design. After all they just came out with the unibody MBP in october 08. Look how long the prior design stayed in place (since the alu G4).

    Don't like them. I've read various complaints of them scratching the MBP or being ill-fitting so that it impacted the opening of the computer.
    This will be my first Mac so Im really excited and have always loved them.
  15. babak macrumors member

    Oct 1, 2009
    I would go for the stock 2.66 model. It is very difficult if not impossible to notice the difference between 2.66 and 2.8 in daily use.
    As with regard to the video card - the GPU is the same on both, the 512 card only has more memory on it, again very difficult to notice, even in games.

    (+)ves of the 2.66 model: slightly longer battery life, less heat.

    P.S. I personally have a 2.8 model but it was not by choice. It was that or a 2.66 glossy, but that's a totally different HOLYWAR :D:D
  16. Collider macrumors regular

    Oct 8, 2009
    I went for the stock 2.66 myself (and, like you, it was my first dabbling in the world of Apple computers), and it's thus far proven itself a powerhouse. While there is a part of me that would've liked to have gone for the 2.8 just so I could say I got the very best, the rational corner of my brain says I wouldn't have noticed any difference whatsoever. I multitask quite a lot with my computer (including some gaming), and it's yet to show even the least signs of breaking a sweat.

    If you have the $200 lying around and want to go for the best, go 2.8. If you'd prefer to keep the money and save it for investing in upgrades further down the line, my experience with the 2.66 says there's nothing (at least nothing I myself have thrown at it) that it can't handle.
  17. harvy3317 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2010
    Knoxville, TN
    So Ive decided I think Im going to go with the 2.66 model and just upgrade the HD to a SSD down the road. I honestly cannot come to the fact that I will use more in 5 years or more then what the 2.66 will offer me. Trust me there is people still using old processors and operation systems out there. I honestly think I could use that money somewhere else. I think the 2.66 will be just perfect and Im not pro or anything. PLUS,,, I have been working with a Lenovo Thinkpad T61 computer I got from work for about the last 3 years and it has nothing close to what the 2.66 offers. So if I think it runs just fine and thats minus the video card, lol, then I think what the 2.66 offers will be fine. What does everyone think?

    Oh yeah what ways can I protect my new Macbook Pro when I get it? Most people are against the Speck Harshell cases. Do you recommend the clear guards you can buy or what. I just dont want an accident to happen. Thank you,,,
  18. Rechargeable macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2010
    Moscow, Russia
    I went for 2.66 myself. Decided to keep extra money for the future ssd upgrade. The cpu difference is not that much. If you are going to use your mac for the next 5 or so years, I would highly recommend you to wait till the end of January, when the new generation is expected to appear
  19. thebeave macrumors member

    Dec 31, 2009
    why didn't anyone recommend the 2.53 stock 15" ?

    If he's not doing much with video or heavy gaming, why not go with the 2.53 and it's cheaper graphics card and appply the savings to something else? Is the 2.53 that different than the 2.66? The Macworld speedmark scores barely differ in just about every task aside from the noticeable Quake frame rate inferiority.
  20. mofunk macrumors 68020


    Aug 26, 2009

    Don't upgrade the HD. Keep the HD and maybe get an external hard drive for your music. I do a lot of music on Macs and having an external hard drive will help when processing music. I agree with everyone 2.53 is fine. One thing I did notice is the 9600 video cards are a lot better. If you can get a refurbish 2.53GHz 320GB UNibody with dual video processor cards, then that's plenty enough for PS and Music Editing. I use Digital Performer, CS4, and Groove Agent on my MBP and its fine.
  21. Csmitte macrumors 6502


    Oct 11, 2007
    @ the end of the day it is only you who will be either happy or sad with your purchase. I would say buy within your means, as most people buy outside there means, buy a little more machine than you need and i dont think you can go wrong.
  22. puma1552 macrumors 601

    Nov 20, 2008
    2.8 all the way.

    I CTO'd my 2.8 in November '08. It's not January '10, and my model is still for sale over a year later, so I've felt pretty good about the purchase.

    Also I got the 512 VRAM and 6MB L2 on this expresscard model. I just wish I had that big battery and 8 GB of RAM availability. With those two things, I'd happily throw 8 GB in and an intel 320 SSD when they are released and I'd be happy for five years too.

    You won't be disappointed.

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