MacBook Pro 2.16/128 MB VRAM vs. 2.33/256 MB VRAM

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by logansosa, May 8, 2007.

  1. logansosa macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2007
    Hi fellow Mac Users,

    I am about to purchase a MacBook Pro. Like many others have inquired about, I too am between the 2.16 and 2.33 processor. But my main concern is not the processor, it is the VRAM. In either scenario I will have 3Gb of ram (getting 2Gig chip from MacRam Direct for pennies compared to many others). Personally 2.16 w/ 3Gb ram vs. 2.33 w/ 3 Gb ram will make little difference too me. The VRAM is where I am hesitating. I would rather save $435 and go with 2.16, but I am a film student and will most likely be running final cut pro, and maybe other graphic arts programs. Is the 256 MB twice as better in terms of performance? And I don't care about minimal differences. Thanks for any info that can be provided.

    $1824 for 2.16GHz 120G harddrive 128 MB vram 1 Gb RAM (I will add 2Gb)
    $2257 for 2.33GHz 120G harddrive 256 MB vram 2 Gb RAM (I will take out 1 Gig, sell it, and add 2Gig chip of Ram)
  2. iW00t macrumors 68040


    Nov 7, 2006
    Defenders of Apple Guild
    Since you are asking, it means money is tight.

    In which case go for the 2.16
  3. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 12, 2005

    ### I believe with FCP, you will not benefit from the better gpu...but you will if using any openGL apps like After Effects. Just to mention....if you're going to be primarily on FCP and dont **need** the machine now, and want to save some serious cash...consider waiting for the new Macbook with x3100. Probably by July....maybe June 11.
  4. milky23 macrumors regular

    Oct 23, 2005
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe the GPU is any different between the two 15" options. As near as I can tell, the only difference is the amount of VRAM. As for if it will significantly affect you logansosa, I have no idea, as I have the exact same question :)

    Can someone confirm/deny this?
  5. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 12, 2005
    ### Indeed. That difference in the GPUs VRAM *can* be quite significant imo and is what makes it "better". Is that needed by a FCP in my opinion. But what about Motion, After Effects, etc...then I think the extra 128mb of vram comes into play. Also...more and more..creative apps are pushing things over from the CPU to the GPU. Another reason for getting the extra 128mb of still not stellar performance. I'm not a gamer, so hopefully someone else will chime in on that topic.

    A personal example: For a 3d animator...I have found out I have been putting too much emphasis on the quality of the GPU (wasting money on expensive graphics cards). Running Maya **for animation** is mostly about the CPU. Even the upcoming Macbook with the X3100 would run Maya quite well...again, for animation. If you're a texturer or modeler...that's a different story. The current Macbook has trouble with Maya and 3d apps.

    The point? Know the demands of your apps... and spend $$ wisely.
  6. logansosa thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2007

    Hey Milky (and everyone else thanks for the input),

    Is the new notebook going to be MacBook or MacBook pro, is there a website that lists the specs and price of the notebook? Thanks,

    And between the 2.16 and 2.33, which one holds its value better (or are they going to be the same), because I am thinking that I will go with the most stable of the two in terms of performance and highest resell value, then maybe when I can afford it in the future go with a Mac Pro, especially since it seems you can add many things after you buy it from mac including memory, harddrive, and video cards, maybe I will go with the GeForce 7300 4x256Mb, there will defenitely be no lag there.
    Thanks, but I am interested in the new one, I was also thinking about just getting a MacBook for temporary use or for my "notebook" then when I can afford it going to the Mac Pro,

    Thanks all

  7. MikeyTree macrumors 6502

    Jan 5, 2007
    When do you need the laptop? If you need it now, get it, but if you can wait a month or two it's rumored that Apple will update the MBP soon, probably announcing it at WWDC at the beginning of June.

    I ask because you said you're a student.
  8. logansosa thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2007
    Hey Mikey

    Truthfully I don't NEED it right now and could wait for 2 months, but I am not sure of the specs of the new MBP and will it be more money? Probably, and WWDC, whats that? Also, there is alot of speculation about the release of the new MB and MBP, some say it wont be here until mid fall, that is 5-6 months, and does anyone know what the specs will be, some say 2.2-2.4ghz, some even say 2.6-2.8 (which I think will not happen), and if the release is a couple months, wouldn't they discount the current MB and MCP's after the release?

  9. mistafreeze macrumors member

    Aug 29, 2006
    they dont discount, atleast not online.

    the only difference is the memory on the video card.

    like another guy mentioned, if you will be using motion, you need the better ram, it will also help with aperture.

    I use maya and the 256 is really needed when you start up some high poly work, though if you keep your polys low, the 128 will still be more than enough.

    Some newer games require a min of 256mb for gaming. I don't really play games that often, but I do make mods etc, and the extra ram helps there too.

    if money is tight, you can use eBay and pick up a 2.16/256 machine off eBay, but those models do not support 3gb, but they are usually 1600-1800 dollars.

    If you have a main machine at home (mac pro), just got with the 128, you can still set up your projects (may be a little slow) and do your main rendering on your mac pro.

    personally if I was buying the 256mb ram, id just buy the 17 inch (actually thats what I did when I bought mine)
  10. seany916 macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2006
    Southern California
    If you can wait a bit...

    Maybe when the new ones come out in about a month, you might like those better. About the same price, but better features. Maybe you might get a better price on the current ones. Always check the refurbs (if you're okay with them). I have no problem with refurbished stuff.

    A little patience goes a long way.
  11. logansosa thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2007
    Thanks for the input-I will wait

    I have come to the conclusion that 128 Mb will be ok for Final Cut Pro, at least for now, so I will wait to see if the MacBooks are updated with the GMA x3100 like so many others are doing, in fact I purchased an HP from with the new GMA x3100 installed, I will try that with an external monitor and see how it performs, If I like it, I will go with the new MacBook (if it indeed does come out), if not I will choose the MacBook Pro, and hopefully it does get updated relatively soon so that I can go with a new version, Thanks everyone

    And any input on the x3100 would be great
  12. logansosa thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2007
    Will Final Cut Pro run well with the GMA x3100?

    Just a quick question though, will the GMA x3100 run final cut pro decent? I think they have 128 MB dedicated, but would the Ati X1600 be significantly better?


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