MacBook Pro Really Required For University?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by catmonkey, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. catmonkey macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #1
    Hi all,

    I have the opportunity to sell my MacBook 2.2Ghz and upgrade to the base MacBook Pro. In two weeks I am going to be starting a Multimedia Computing course at De Montfort here in the UK, meaning I will be doing and studying topics from Animation and Post Production Video to Network Administration and Databases.

    What I am really asking is do students tend to do coursework etc on their notebook or do they use the Uni's computer suites and use notebooks only to take notes in lectures? In which case my current MacBook would be fine.

    I could buy the Pro next weekend (13th Sept) when I go to a KRCS store to pick up my MacBook as it is having the palm rest replaced because of the cracking issue.

    I know there are imminent updates, and I am well aware of the Nvidia problems at the moment but I am still debating getting the current generation as having it a week before going Uni would be better for me than buying one half way though a semester and selling the MacBook at the same time.

    What would you do considering my situation?

    Many Thanks,

    Mike
     
  2. mattyb240 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    #2
    As a third year UK student I can honestly tell you I have only used Uni computers a handful of times either due to a specific software or during lectures.

    Everything else I do at home, for comfort/convenience factor. Trust me you do not want to treck to Uni computers at night in the rain. It gives you a better comfort to do it in your own student pad when it suits you and you can create the best or the worst work environment for yourself. And by the sounds of it, if you have the cash go for the baseline pro it will suit your needs better.
     
  3. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #3
    when i was in engineering, i used my mb for reports and internet and yea thats mainly it

    for any real work, it was MUCH for convienent and practical to use the university labs as they were much much faster
     
  4. skyrider007 macrumors 65816

    skyrider007

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Location:
    Bangkok
    #4
    You'd be much better off purchasing a Windows-based laptop for use at uni. I speak from experience.

    P.S. I know Mac can run Windows via Boot Camp but that's an extra £60 or so to license a copy of Windows. Save your money for essential.

    P.S.S. I have nothing against Mac, but a Mac at UK uni just isn't the best solution at the moment.
     
  5. Primus84 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    What an absolute load of rubbish. There is absolutely no need to have a Windows laptop. Macs are being used by so many students now that having one isn't a problem, I speak from experience.

    If you're doing DBs then SQL is cross platform.
    Obviously networks are cross platform.
    Animation will be cross platform.

    I did my entire MSc. CompSci with a Powerbook G4 and never had a problem.
     
  6. Cadium macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    #6
    I don't see a problem with using a regular MacBook for university, unless you have the need for a dedicated graphics card or a larger screen. MacBook's are more convenient to carry around with a load of books vs a MacBook Pro.
     
  7. skyrider007, Sep 6, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 26, 2011

    skyrider007 macrumors 65816

    skyrider007

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Location:
    Bangkok
    #7
    I beg to differ. I had to buy a copy of Windows XP to run boot camp so that I can use my uni provided SPSS suite (they do not have a Mac version which cost like £5,000). Network printers at library are also not compatible with Macs. I am not saying rubbish.
     
  8. Primus84 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #8

    Which network printers are not compatible?

    Which uni did you attend? When was that?

    For the odd piece of software, he could always remote desktop into the Uni computers, or use the PC labs.

    If he's doing CompSci he should get Windows free through MSDNAA in any case, I know I did, and stacks more software too!
     
  9. panzer06 macrumors 68030

    panzer06

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Location:
    Kilrath
    #9
    I used to manage the Help Desk at a US University that has a Visual Arts, Animation and Gaming program. The entire program used G5s in the labs and Powerbooks and Macbook Pros (laptops provided as part of the tuition) for the students for CS2/CS3, Maya and Quark. The only Windows requirement was the game development course which was written around Windows game development tools. Bootcamp now makes the Windows lab redundant for those Mac students.

    The few students who used personal ibooks and Macbooks always complained about slow performance using Maya, other than that they seemed ok.

    Cheers,
     
  10. wasimyaqoob macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2005
    Location:
    London, England.
    #10
    I'm at University of Sheffield, studying for my Law LLB, and I've got a MacBook Pro which I take around with me everywhere - I don't find it too big, I just love the bigger screen and aluminimum finish

    Can't wait to upgrade to the new one when it HOPEFULLY comes out on the 9th :)
     
  11. SphericalPear macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2008
    #11
    generally it is agreed that macbook pros are WAY too huge and heavy to carry around to lecture. they burn your legs when you're actually using it as aLAPtop. MBPs are knwon to be desktop replacements. MBs are actual laptops. keep it.
     
  12. EV0LUTION macrumors 6502

    EV0LUTION

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2008
    Location:
    Florida
    #12
    I use my mbp almost everyday, it was recommended by the majority of my professors. Its a great machine for school. If you use it in lectures install smcFanControll and make a custom setting for the highest possible RPM to keep it from burning your legs!
     
  13. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    #13
    Yeah man lol MPB's burn.


    But wait..don't you guys have desks?

    I've gone through hundreds of lectures with my MBP and it certianly isn't "too heavy", especially since I have a large aluminum breifcase to carry around the wireless mighty mouse and keyboard...

    Weaklings.
     
  14. EV0LUTION macrumors 6502

    EV0LUTION

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2008
    Location:
    Florida
    #14
    The lecture Hall has just seats no desks. Regular classes have desks.
     
  15. grooveattack macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    #15
    i got my MBP for my media production course and i am happy to say that it helped me get through my first year with the grade i got.
    I was not forced to use the crappy uni windows PCs that they had and i did not have to walk to uni every time i wanted to do some work. While others had to sit in a loud and very hot room to edit film all day, i sat in my nice quiet, cool dorm room, and worked much better because of it.
    As for windows integration the only problem i had was printing and forgeting to convert my pages files into .doc files.
    Mac's are becoming alot more popular and thus the support is becoming greater.
    Oh and the MBP is not heavy to carry round, or at least no heavier than 3/4 text books.
    GET ONE!
     
  16. catmonkey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #16
    Good Points

    Thank you for giving so much advice and discussion for me to consider, it is much appreciated.

    It looks like getting a MacBook Pro would be the right thing to do, although in this thread opinions are almost 50/50.

    Throughout the last two years my MacBook has served me well, stopping me from having to waste time and effort on my sixth forms PC suites and meaning I could chuckle to myself when others forgot memory sticks, or had to spend half of an hours free period searching for free computer rooms and then having to find PC's that actually worked. I always felt the coursework I produced was of a high quality because of doing things this way, and as I have already had to convert hundreds of pages of work from 'Pages' files to PDF files to print at school carrying on like this won't be a problem at Uni if I can't print directly from my Mac.

    I will Bootcamp with XP so it is always there just in case I need it, and I'm glad the MSDNAA was mentioned here, I will look into it.

    Now I just have to hope I'll be lucky and new MacBook Pro's will be released this week, if not I won't get hung up on it and still buy the current generation and be happy with the machine.

    Thanks again,

    Mike
     
  17. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    #17
    Why would you bother upgrading to a new MBP when you'd see at best a modest speed increase, even if you're using an original MBP? I'll never understand this.

    And no, they're not coming out on the 9th.
     
  18. catmonkey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #18
    Which Screen?

    Now I have decided to go with the Pro I have a few more questions . . .

    Firstly due to the nature of my University course the matte would suit me best due to needing true colours?

    If I did decide to go glossy however do Apple stores carry stock of these models? KRCS do not as it is BTO (where my MacBook is currently in for repair)

    Many thanks,

    Mike
     
  19. panzer06 macrumors 68030

    panzer06

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Location:
    Kilrath
    #19
    You will find many threads where the color benefits of Matte over Glossy are discussed in great detail.

    I personally prefer glossy for its bright and vibrant playback of movies, and games but for your school work perhaps matte is better but do take a look around for those matte vs. glossy threads too.

    Cheers,
     
  20. drlunanerd macrumors 65816

    drlunanerd

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #20
    Don't buy it from KRCS unless they'll give you the full Apple Higher Ed discount (15% off or so) + the free 3 year AppleCare base warranty that you get buying direct from Apple.
     
  21. skyrider007 macrumors 65816

    skyrider007

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Location:
    Bangkok
    #21
    +1. Glossy rules.
     
  22. catmonkey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #22
    apple store

    Thanx for the heads up, I've arranged to get over to the Milton Keynes apple store on Wednesday to take advantage of the AppleCare as krcs would only offer one year of their own warranty, plus the pro is more expensive from them anyway with their education discount!
     
  23. catmonkey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #23
    Got It!

    Just thought I should report back and let anyone who is interested know I went to the Apple store as planned and picked up the 2.4 Ghz MacBook Pro with the glossy screen (just looked so much better than matte in store)

    I couldn't be happier with the machine, seems perfect so far. I'm just amazed at it as a whole, the sturdy feeling of the aluminum case, the luxury of having a backlit keyboard and surprisingly I prefer this keyboard to the Macbook's. Now I can see why this casing has been around for many years!

    Thanks once again for all the help and discussion in this thread,

    Mike
     
  24. skye12 macrumors 65816

    skye12

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, Tx
    #24
    Agree with previous posts. Don't waste money by buying a MBP.

    MB is more than sufficient and is more much portable and durable.
     
  25. durant0s macrumors regular

    durant0s

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #25
    Go with the MBP just so when there is a situation when you need to do something you can, from anywhere.

    On a side note, I wish I was given the opportunity to attend a British literature and composition class. hehe
     

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