MBP 15 Need help in selecting details!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by T-M, Aug 26, 2010.

  1. T-M macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2010
    My son wants a MBP 15 and trying to decide what's the best bang for our buck and hope you all can help.
    C2D vs i5 vs i7?
    Cache: 3 - 6mb and what does it matter:
    2.66Hz or smaller? What is the benefit?
    Graphics: please help on this one.
    RAM: 4 or 8gb?
    HD: 320 or 500gb? And why

    He's a soph in college and is a music minor so the digital recording/editing is the main reason why we're looking at the MBP.
    Any and all help would be HUGELY appreciated.
  2. mulo macrumors 68020


    Aug 22, 2010
    Behind you
    i5 at least! The C2D is outdated, like a lot..
  3. oplix Suspended


    Jun 29, 2008
    New York, NY
    For college you can get the base configuration which would be just fine. I suggest getting an i5 processor. It's the newest processor so the laptop will maintain value through the next few years. Also it's power efficient and fast so he can have more time without having it plugged in.

    Have you looked at the 13 inch MBP? They are excellent for portability and offer great performance.
  4. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    The base 2.4GHz i5 15" seems to be the sweet spot. C2D is little outdated even though it's still a good chip.
  5. pandamonia macrumors 6502a

    Nov 15, 2009
  6. MasterTick macrumors 6502

    Jun 22, 2009
    C2D isn't a bad processor by any means, but if he's doing serious work with music then go with the i5 or i7 if you can afford it

    No need to over spend on the upgraded graphics card if he's not gonna do serious gaming or photo/video editing.

    4GB of memory should be plenty. You can always upgrade this later.

    Don't know how much music he'll be working with but 320GB should be enough, if you're looking for a performance increase get a faster HDD, 7200 RPM or better.

    Hope this helps
  7. MrCheeto macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2008
    C2D vs i5 vs i7? The Core 2 is an old architecture, now, and is being replaced by the Core i architecture. Core i is a super-smart new architecture that allows you to get faster processors with less power consumption and heat and so forth. Basically, i5's and i7's are supercharged turbocharged V8's with blowers and nitrous. This doesn't mean the Core 2 Duos aren't still respectable power houses.

    Cache: 3 - 6mb and what does it matter: This would be almost irrelevant to an end-user.

    2.66Hz or smaller? What is the benefit? 1hz means the CPU has one cycle (group of calculations) per second. Hertz is a measure of frequency. So the greater the frequency, the more RPM of the engine ;) (2.66ghz= 2,660,000,000 cycles per second) More is not necessarily faster. For instance, a 2ghz Core i5 will smoke a 2ghz Core 2 Duo.

    Graphics: please help on this one. Graphics cards power the graphics on your display. The more power, the more complex the graphics can be. This is most commonly taken advantage of by external monitors, scientific simulations that involve complex animations, and video games.

    RAM: 4 or 8gb? RAM allows you to run more applications simultaneously without having to stop to read the hard drive so often. It's like opening more lanes on a highway; you can have more cars traveling simultaneously. The thing is, there is such thing as too many lanes if you have too few cars. Depending on what you use you may just want 4gb of ram.

    HD: 320 or 500gb? And why This is the storage capacity of the computer. The more capacity, the more videos and pictures and documents and applications he can store.

    Just so you know, in the future, you can upgrade the Hard Drive, RAM or optical drive if you choose.
  8. ouimetnick macrumors 68020


    Aug 28, 2008
    Beverly, Massachusetts
    I would get the base 15" MacBook Pro. While a 13" MBP would be fine, it lacks an audio in port... and a music minor may want an audio in port.

    Also, the Core i3, i5, and i7 are faster than the Core 2 Duo, but the Core 2 Duo is still incredibly fast. A Core 2 Duo is probably more than enough for him... but it only comes on the 13" MBP that lacks audio in.
  9. thecarrot macrumors regular

    Jul 20, 2010
    Just max it out then youll have no regrets, and it will also last quite long
  10. JCCash macrumors regular

    Apr 20, 2008
    My recomendation 15" i5 refurbish from Apple. I bought my son (last year) the 15" 2.66 refurb and he loves it. Runs FCP well but the i5 is even faster.
  11. Giuly macrumors 68040


    1. There is no C2D 15" MBP anymore, so your choice is between 2.4GHz i5, 2.53GHz i5 and 2.66GHz i7.
    2. All 15" MBPs have nVidia 330m graphics and Intel graphics in the chipset, which Mac OS X will switch automatically according to the usage to save battery.
    3. Upgrade the RAM yourself, so my vote goes for 2GB.
    4. Same goes for the hard drive.

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