MBP 15" decision- honest opinions please!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by patorioto, Mar 1, 2011.

  1. patorioto macrumors member

    Mar 1, 2011
    So to give a little background- I had used windows machines my whole life until I decided to make the jump to a macbook pro when they first came out way back in 2006. I'm typing this on that exact same machine 5 years later in March of 2011. That sentence is proof enough that apple makes a damn fine computer worth the few extra bucks. I've had one repair in 5 years- a loud fan that they replaced for free within waranty.

    Since my computer is five years old I've obviously been considering an upgrade. I briefly considered buying a new MBP back in the end of 2010 until I realized a new update was due, so I held out. Now the new models are here.

    They basically offer everything that I wanted at a price that while expensive isn't totally out of my price range. The issue I have (that was recently brought up by what you all consider to be a troll, I would say is making a logical argument) is that you can buy a comparable windows system for hundreds less. I'm not completely poor but I will soon be making a career change and if I can help it I would prefer not to blow 2,000+ on a laptop that I can get for 1,400 from Asus.

    I need something fairly powerful as I do occasionally work with hd video, edit pictures, play games, multitask, etc. A run of the mill computer won't cut it. My trusty 2006 MBP is on its last legs and I need some help.

    Can someone convince me why I should spend the extra cash for the Apple machine? I've learned to love OSX and apple in general but not quite enough to ignore the competition and the lure of an equal, cheaper machine. I want something that can handle modern games and not let me down when I push it with HD video etc.

  2. amoergosum macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2008
    I don't understand...you've been using a Macbook Pro since 2006...so you know what OSX has to offer.
    I would never switch back to Windows.
  3. billgates99, Mar 1, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2011

    billgates99 macrumors regular

    Apr 13, 2010
    do you mean to say you want your laptop to run recent and upcoming games at, say 1920x1080/1920x1200, max detail settings and get at least 30-40 fps?

    or would you be ok with running on lower settings, perhaps lower resolution?

    which apps do you use for this?
  4. Apple 26.2 macrumors 6502a

    Apple 26.2

    Jan 1, 2011
    What up, 212?!
    If money is not an issue, stick with the Mac. As you've noted, you know what Apple brings to the table, but your financial situation dictates otherwise.

    I'm in a similar situation: I'd like the high end 15" right now, but I just had to buy new kitchen appliances... guess I'll have to wait a few months!
  5. patorioto, Mar 1, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2011

    patorioto thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 1, 2011
    I've been lurking these forums for a long time. I did a lot of research back in Nov./Dec. when I was thinking about getting a new laptop. Doesn't even have to be Asus... you can find a comparable windows machine for hundreds of dollars less.
  6. patorioto, Mar 1, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2011

    patorioto thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 1, 2011
    Sorry I should have been more clear.. I don't need to run new/upcoming games on max detail at full resolution. I'm talking more something like Starcraft 2 at high/ultra settings/ steam games/ possible future games but if it's not maxed out it won't kill me.
  7. billgates99, Mar 1, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2011

    billgates99 macrumors regular

    Apr 13, 2010
    I'm hearing that you need a powerful machine to do hd video editing as well as gaming and you have a somewhat limited budget. Plus you want a well-designed laptop that will last a long time.

    MBPs are not really designed for gaming, in fact very few laptops are great for gaming and even fewer are excellent for hd video editing. And those that are, are generally pretty bulky and somewhat expensive.

    I don't know what apps you use for editing, but have you considered going with a cheap, powerful PC desktop for gaming/video editing coupled with a 13" MBP or MBA (perhaps even a used/refurb 2010 MBP)? This could be a good solution if you use CS5 apps like photoshop and premiere, that can really benefit from GPU acceleration with NVIDIA video cards in a PC desktop. If you use FCP I'd suggest to wait until the details of the upcoming 2011 FCP update are released.
  8. babyt, Mar 1, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2011

    babyt macrumors regular


    Jul 28, 2009

    My advice. Find an Asus or Luke computer that was comparable in specs to your old Mbp. Then look at the quality after the last 5 years

    Honestly OSX alone is worth the apple tax IMO

    I'll give it to Microsoft that win7 is ok. But it's no where near OSX
    Ultimately it's up to you and your wallet.
  9. patorioto thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 1, 2011
    My 5 year old MBP has lasted this long which scores a ton of points, but I also do have to admit I may have been lucky I've gone this long without any major hiccups. I'm sure there are plenty of people with the same machine that have had had issues.

    My question is how am I supposed to "look" at the quality of an Asus with the same specs?

    And billgates you raise a good point... I suppose it might be better to get a cheaper PC for gaming coupled with a MBA. I also have my old MBP that still runs great.

    The allure of a shiny new MBP is hard to resist though... :eek:
  10. Radex, Mar 1, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2011

    Radex macrumors member

    Feb 23, 2011
    For me personally, I am waiting on my MBP order. In my opinion and from the advice of others, it is far more streamlined for Photoshopping and video editing which I heavily do. And from personal experience, I had terrible experiences while video editing because of the constant crashing. Now, it may be my computer's age and specs, but it doesn't deny the fragmentation that Adobe has to deal with in Windows.

    As for games, I'm sure the MBP will run them fine, but not the greatest. You can always use Bootcamp (if you able to pay for more) to play more games.
  11. Cantisama macrumors member

    Feb 27, 2011
    Imho you should only buy a Mac if you need it for Mac specific applications (for example, Final Cut or XCode). Otherwise I would buy a cheaper laptop with similar specs and dual boot Ubuntu (for main desktop environment) and Windows 7 (for gaming and Windows specific applications).
  12. ender land macrumors 6502a

    Oct 26, 2010
    I've said this before -

    Reasons I am happy with my 13" mbp (purchased november 2010) -

    • Trackpad quality
    • Overall build quality
    • sleep -> awake time (~1 second)
    • battery life
    • screen quality
    • backlit keyboard
    • Sleek design
    • OS's focus on usability/appearance
    • reliability/customer support

    Did it cost more? Yup. But I am glad to pay for those features (my roommate got a $700 windows laptop with comparable, if not better specs vs my $1200 mbp) - even if it is something like
    $100 - trackpad
    $100 - overall build (unibody)
    $50 - sleep time
    $50 - battery life
    $25 - backlit screen
    $50 - awesome display
    $50 - os:x vs windows
    $50 - reliability/customer support

    I thought about the differences in terms of what you pay per difference and the number of hours I will use my computer in the future (a tooooon, easily in the thousands) I have no problem paying extra for specific features such as those I listed. The construction quality on my MBP is AWESOME. My roommates pc is a plastic, feels like junk, computer. It probably is not as bad as it feels but I am wiling to pay for that difference.

    I hate trackpads in general, so having a high quality one was key for me - I testd a lot of windows laptops and NONE came close to the mac trackpads. In fact I normally do not even use a mouse with my laptop now! I would have never dreamed of that with a windows laptop.
  13. babyt macrumors regular


    Jul 28, 2009
    Wouldn't a good gaming rig and MBA put you around if not over 2000$?

    For that I say just get the Mbp
    It will run starcraft 2 fine.

    If your really dead set on a pc. Go with Sony vaio series or even better get an alienware for gaming.
    I personally detest Asus quality and build

    after using aluminum Unibody the plastic feel of most laptops is cheap. Along with their trackpads..
  14. billgates99 macrumors regular

    Apr 13, 2010
  15. SlickShoes macrumors 6502a

    Jan 24, 2011
    In my opinion if you are a laptop user and you use the touchpad, the apple trackpad is worth the price bump of an apple product easily.

    The build quality is excellent. It will last longer than an equivalent PC laptop because of that.

    In a year the value of this laptop will have dropped slightly but if you get a PC laptop then the value of it will have plummetted.

    I have used many laptops and i have yet to find a PC laptop i like at all due to things like: terrible build quality, flimsy screens, TERRIBLE trackpads, horrible power extensions, large ugly batteries, much worse battery life than my mac.

    Gaming wise on my current macbook i can get 2.5 hours of gaming running just off the battery, and equivalent PC laptop of 2 years old would probably top out at about 50 minutes.
  16. mikkelnl macrumors member

    Feb 7, 2011
    I am curious; I just ordered my first Mac (MBP) and I've been a Windows user for 20 years now. I've been reading a lot about Mac OS and can't wait to get to know it.

    However: I am extremely curious: can you explain where you find Mac OS beats Windows 7? I'm not trolling, believe me, but I am just curious because I can't (yet!) make the comparisson myself... :)
  17. billgates99 macrumors regular

    Apr 13, 2010
    You just need to try OSX and see if you like it more on a personal level. Go to an apple store or borrow a friend's MBP for a few hours.

    Personally I prefer OSX interface for sorting through images, files and surfing web pages, etc., but I'm completely comfortable working in either, as I have to use both for work. Ultimately, what matters is the apps that you will use.
  18. babyt macrumors regular


    Jul 28, 2009
    This is gonna sound a bit corny but
    I LOVE the ui. It's just so beautiful. It just works and flows.

    I Like that the apple apps can and do work together and once you learn one you know slot of the others. Sorta like Adobe illustrator. Indesign and Photoshop.
    I like the way the desktop us set up. It's vet minimalist, yet keeps me organized
    (im really bad with organization lol my pc computer was a nightmare)
    To me windows seems bloated and still stuck in the late 90s (I came from vista. I've used 7 alot. It's def an improvement)
    I really don't know how to explain why I like it without saying three cliche fanboy (ahem girl) words
    It just works.

    Sry for my fluff post
  19. MultiMediaWill macrumors 68000

    Aug 1, 2010
  20. Buck987 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 16, 2010
    We have both in the house since my wife needs 7 for her job. While 7 is indeed improved it just doesn't work as well as the OSX.

    The smoothness and non-hiccuping nature of the system really impresses me.
  21. PUMMYUK macrumors member

    Dec 29, 2010
    Recent MBP owner and OSX user here (less than 1 week) after 15 years on Richmond products

    1) Most of what you need is ready to use out of the box.
    Examples are Time machine for backups and iPhoto for photo management

    2) Build quality is better
    The analogy would be a Fiat vs Audi (European bias here, sorry!)

    3) Interface is much more easier to navigate than the windows legacy or derived effort. Note this is different from having to learn and change how to use a computer GUI, so please note this point

    The example being things like expose showing windows. Instead of having to ALT-TAB through, I can press a button then trackpad over to the window I want. Or widgets that can be bought up by a button again for things like calculator, instead of START --> RUN --> calc --> <ENTER>

    4) *Nix underpinnings (This is personal preference to me as I link a command line Unix environment to work with sometimes)

    5) This is down to my last experience, but drivers for their products just working as they need to. I have spent many hours having to troubleshoot issues on my windows XP machine over the last 2 years. Now I have an iPhone / iPad / iKid (who claims the iPad as hers when she is conscious) I would like something that just works and I do not have to do the IT tech support role at home.

    That is just my opinion, however it is very much based on my experiences with my PC over the last two years on XP which has been very much a losing battle trying to get it to function without being really slow, despite numerous rebuilds.
  22. HBOC macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2008
    I assume you mean Redmond products, as that is where they are based? :)
  23. aznguyen316 macrumors 68020


    Oct 1, 2008
    Tampa, FL
    some very good points in this thread.

    Build quality and trackpad are two big reasons I keep going back to apple. Not to mention OSX although I don't have an issue with Win7.

    I was in OP's position and didn't want to be naive to the competition. There are some very capable machines at a great cost. The new Asus G53/n53 are pretty slick as well as their Sager equivalents... mmmm

    but in the end, it's about usability more than getting the slickest specs and Apple has that for me.
  24. HBOC macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2008
    As far as upgrading and using the same machine for FIVE years, I would say go for it. I had an early 08' that must have been made on a Friday (or Monday) that had several problems and finally got a replacement, but on its' defense, it WAS NEVER TURNED OFF OR PUT TO SLEEP.

    I really like this one. I miss the all silver keys, but whatever. I don't game that much, but again my other MBP probably couldn't run many games. This one can.
  25. patorioto thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 1, 2011
    Thanks for all the insight and advice.

    I think I've just about convinced myself that while Apple is pricey, I can't honestly see myself going back and buying a Dell or Asus or something. I mean... really.

    As the guy above me said, it's been 5 years on the same machine now with no problems and no money spent on repairs. I think I'm due! :D

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