Macbook Pro 15" vs. 17"

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by melissdahl, May 30, 2009.

  1. melissdahl macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2009
    #1
    I recently found out that I am required to purchase a Macbook Pro for my major. (I am a graphic design and photography major). I already currently own the 13" macbook, so am more than excited to have to upgrade. But I'm facing the usual dilemma. I've found other forums discussing the same topic but none as of recent or since the new macs came out.

    So my question --- should I go with the 15" or the 17"?

    The price difference isn't really a problem, it's more of the features and size between the two. I know the 17" has the 8 hour battery life, but it's obviously bigger and I am going to have to bring it with me to class daily. But I feel like bigger screen may benefit me when using Photoshop, Illustrator, etc. The 15" is obviously smaller, but would I really be sacrificing anything going with that size?

    Has anyone bought one size and wished or eventually purchased the other instead?

    Opinions? :)
     
  2. kauthor macrumors newbie

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    Aug 4, 2006
    #2
    No. Not Really. With the 15 inches, you have room to upgrade your RAM, and your Hard Drive, which is essential for your major. With the 17 inches, you can't upgrade your RAM, or your Hard Drive.
     
  3. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    #3
    The difference is really just the screen size (and the computer size and weight that goes along with it); you also get a third USB port.

    15" should be enough for almost anything you do with photos. It is more portable; of course the advantage of the 17" is you can order it with an anti-glare display (recommended). You won't be getting 8 hours of battery life on the 17" nor will you get 5 hours from the 15"; at least on the 15" you can buy a space battery.

    I would get rid of the MacBook, buy the 15" low end model and buy a nice 24"-30" monitor to use back at home/dorm.

    You can readily upgrade the RAM and HDD on both machines.
     
  4. kauthor macrumors newbie

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    #4
    The battery is soldered on! You can't remove the battery!
     
  5. killianb macrumors regular

    killianb

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    #5
    I'd go with the 17" I think. I have the 15" because I wanted the smaller size, and couldn't quite afford much more, however many, many people have said you really don't notice the size difference (portability wise) -- for a 17" laptop, it's still very light and smaller than many others on the market.

    As for the screen, the resolution is MUCH better. I think after using the 17 for a bit, you'd struggle to go back to the 15.

    If you can afford to, I'd go 17, I don't think you'll regret it. ;)
     
  6. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #6
    love to know where you heard that one?!:confused:

    the best way to know what it would be like to hold and carry them is to got to an apple store if you can and check them out. get hands on.
     
  7. Kronie macrumors 6502a

    Kronie

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    #7
    I would say get the 17" If nothing else for the beautiful screen...
     
  8. jb1280 macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 13, 2009
    #8
  9. maclover001 macrumors 6502a

    maclover001

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    #9
    I would buy a 15", and a nice 24" monitor for your desk in your dorm room.
     
  10. bonini macrumors newbie

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    May 16, 2009
    #10
    What it comes down to is that with the 17" your paying about $300 more for the longer battery, bigger screen, and higher resolution (1920x1200 as opposed to 1440x900). I would say if you have the money do it, when using graphics programs having a high resolution really helps.
     
  11. galstaph macrumors 6502a

    galstaph

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  12. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #12
    I would buy either the upper end 2.66 CPU 15" or the 17" and buy what you want. Either will let you put 8 GB of RAM in it down the road when it's cheap. Also, most do report excellent battery in the 17" but some say the display is dimmer than the 15." At the same time, the 17" does have antiglare, but some of us like the glossy.

    The weight isn't really that big of difference and neither is the size. The problem is when trying to open a 17" in an airline seat, it's nearly impossible. Really, your 13" MB is better for travel on airplanes.

    In the end, buy what you want most based on what you want to look at and use. Don't think the extra .5 lbs weight means much neither does the extra inch wide 17" MBP... it's really only like an inch wider or so. It really doesn't feel big, and it's not any thicker than the 15" either.

    They're both awesome. Good luck with whichever you buy.
     
  13. 3rdLittlePiggie macrumors member

    3rdLittlePiggie

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    #13
    I went with the 15 because I couldn't afford the 17 and I was a little bit worried about the battery and having to replace it. Now that its been getting closer, I'm pretty sure if I'd had the money i would have gone 17. I'm a Graphic Designer by the way.
     
  14. kauthor macrumors newbie

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    Aug 4, 2006
    #14
    The weight isn't really that big of difference and neither is the size. The problem is when trying to open a 17" in an airline seat, it's nearly impossible. Really, your 13" MB is better for travel on airplanes. That is one other reason why I brought the 15 inches MBP. I will be doing lot of traveling this summer.
     
  15. bugout macrumors 6502a

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    is everything!
    #15
  16. JCastro macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    the only reason that I would recommend the 15" over the 17" is the size and mobility. But seeing as how you have a MB I would get the 17" if money is no object. If you do any traveling you could take your MB if you find the 17" cumbersome.

    I love my 15" but I am constantly traveling and needed one machine. When I have a home to hang my hat, I will get an iMac. Until then my 15" MBP will do just fine!
     
  17. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #17
    I think on any day to day use, the 15" is a better machine. As others stated, the 17" can be a bit too unwieldy and while not that much heavier, does had weight and size to what you need to lug around.
     
  18. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

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  19. Peikko macrumors newbie

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    #19
    Mine is that the size of the screen really makes a difference for when you want to do extensive work, especially for media development. Now, if, as others suggested, you're fine with getting an external monitor (I do recommend the Dell 2209WA) and planning on doing the most of your work at home, the 15'' sounds best. Otherwise, go for the 17''. I really think some people are overly concerned with the size and weight factor - I've lugged around a 17'' Acer quite a lot this year with no complaints, and the specs put that at 3.7Kg.
     
  20. yossim macrumors regular

    yossim

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    #20
    I really like the option of being able to have an extra battery to change out real quick on the 15".
     
  21. jjprusk macrumors member

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    Jul 20, 2007
    #21
    Macbook Pro 15" vs. 17"

    I had a 17" MBP for many years (and prior to that a 17" Powerbook) and was quite happy with them. When the new unibody MBPs came out I was really ready to upgrade and didn't want to wait for the 17" so I upgraded to a 15" and added one of the new 24" displays, all for about the same price. I must say I've been very happy with my decision and at this point wouldn't go back to a 17". My MBP travels with me often (every day to work, trips, vacations, etc.) and the 15" travels much better than the 17" due to weight and size. Bottom line is each to their own, but if your laptop often travels with you size may be a consideration.
     
  22. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #22
    the 2.66 and the 2.93 do. the 2.53 and 2.4 do not as of yet.
     
  23. kauthor macrumors newbie

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    Aug 4, 2006
    #23
    That is why I have the new 2.66.
     
  24. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

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    Japan
  25. JamesGorman macrumors 65816

    JamesGorman

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    Winnipeg

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