MBP - which configuration?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Journalist, Apr 23, 2011.

  1. Journalist macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2011
    #1
    Hi,

    I know there are lots of threads on similar topics, but I have quite a lot of separate questions, so I hope some of you might be able to help.

    I am looking to buy a MBP, specifically the 15 inch 2.2GHz (higher spec) one.

    As well as day-to-day internet surfing, word-processing, etc I will be using it to run Lightroom and am going to try to teach myself Final Cut Pro.

    I can also - luckily - get an education discount, if that's a factor in answering any of the below...

    Processor

    Ideally I would not pay the extra £200 for 2.3GHz, but I would consider it if it was going to make a huge difference to how well FCP runs. Any thoughts?

    Memory

    My instinct was to pay £160 to go to 8GBs of RAM. From my research, RAM makes a lot of difference to how well things run. My question is this: should I get Apple's RAM, or from somewhere else? I have heard Crucial are good - is that the cheapest / best RAM in the UK? And is it very easy to install? I'm not very good with that kind of thing...

    Hard drive

    This is what's confusing me most. I do have quite a lot of photos (RAW format) and have pretty much filled up by 500 GB hard drive. So my initial thought was the 750GB drive @5400rpm. However, I've discovered that can slow down programs. So: do I get the 500GB @ 7200rpm or is it worth getting the 128GB SSD? Would the SSD make a huge difference to the speed the laptop runs at? Obviously it would mean I'd have to get an external HD, which would probably not be that many rpm (as I'd be paying more for the SSD). I've also heard it's possible to get third-party SSDs - where's the best place in the UK and are they easy to install?

    As you can tell, confused! Any thought as to what the best option here is? Cost is a factor...

    Display

    I don't really like glossy displays, but have never seen the hi-res anti-glare one. Is it worth it for £120?


    Summary

    Any guidance on which the best configuaration is for running Final Cut and Lightroom on a 15 inch MBP would be much appreciated!
     
  2. ojaysimsanson macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2010
    #2
    Processor- I would recommend getting the stock i7 quad core at 2.2 Ghz, I dont feel the 2.3 is worth the extra dough. Lightroom and Final Cut Pro do not require much processing power, and a quad core is more than sufficient on its own.

    Memory- I would recommend getting the 8gb, I would not get apples ram, try to get 1333 MHz as it will be noticeable compared to 1000 Mhz.

    Hard drive- Yes the change from a hard drive to a ssd is huge. It will result in opening final cut pro and lightroom in no time. Its still a lot of money though.
     
  3. Wanderer509 macrumors member

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    Oct 28, 2007
    #3
     
  4. Blipp macrumors 6502

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    Mar 14, 2011
    #4
    You're joking, right?
     
  5. David-fr macrumors 6502

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    Jul 7, 2008
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #5
    ahhah when ever im editing on Lightroom or Aperture my fans kick in and my temps go up. It indeed uses lots of power.
     
  6. thermodynamic Suspended

    thermodynamic

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    And the more one writes to a SSD, especially if TRIM is not enabled, the sooner the SSD develops defects. I'd recommend against a SSD for video editing... I'd get a Seagate Momentus XT for the HDD and make sure the firmware is at SD25 (which fixes a number of problems...)

    Amazon has 1600MHz RAM, which runs on the 2011 MBP: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0..._m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0A7YX61K0TFAETK632K3

    As was said, Final Cut Pro will use a lot of CPU time (Lightroom effects and doing batch processing also use a lot of CPU time), but from 2.2 to 2.3GHz, even with the 2.3GHz's extra cache, the difference is negligible.

    But the 17" model is a good model.

    And even if you run a lot of little apps at once, a quad-core will easily handle all of them. (multi-threaded apps run even better, but multiple single-threaded apps will run without any hiccups either.)
     
  7. PinkyMacGodess, Apr 23, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2011

    PinkyMacGodess macrumors 68040

    PinkyMacGodess

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Midwest America.
    #7
    But going faster doesn't really buy you much either, except possibly more expensive memory. I believe the processor only uses 1333 DIMMS.

    EDIT: The prices, although it's unavailable, aren't bad at all. But Intel says the memory speed supported is 1333 so I'd imagine that faster memory is being under-clocked. The price doesn't seem to make it a fools quest for any speed improvement so get it, if you can, I guess. Your mileage may vary...

    EDIT: I was wrong: The Core i7 supports DDR3-1066/1333/1600 memory... OUCH!

    Who would want to go slower. I mean really...
     
  8. PinkyMacGodess macrumors 68040

    PinkyMacGodess

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    Mar 7, 2007
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    Midwest America.
    #8
  9. Wanderer509 macrumors member

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    Oct 28, 2007
    #9
    important part is that 8GX (or any X for the matter) wont clock at 1600mhz for our mbp because we dont have a bios. we want 8G for the 1600mhz as discussed in other threads
     
  10. PinkyMacGodess macrumors 68040

    PinkyMacGodess

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Midwest America.
    #10
    From what I could get out of the Kingston website, the '8G' has been discontinued. Interesting. Our distributor stocks the '8GX' but has never had the 'non-X' memory in their system, although that doesn't mean that much in the real world although it looks like the 'non-X' could be harder to get.

    I'll search here for information on the difference between them.
     
  11. edifyingGerbil macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    #11
    It sounds like you could benefit from having a higher res display. I'm not sure about anti-glare, it seems mainly a personal preference.

    As for your RAM question, I see you're in the UK so I would wholeheartedly recommend getting the 1600MHz 8GB RAM kit from http://store.cbccomputers.com/products.asp?partno= KHX1600C9S3K2%2F8G .

    It's currently gone down in price, at only £70 (I paid 4.55 extra) and they're offering free shipping at the moment.

    My Windows Experience Index for RAM went from 5.9 to 7.8 since installing it and I've noticed my system doesn't become bogged down at all.

    the 1600MHz is compatible with the 2.2 and 2.3GHz CPUs
     
  12. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    #12
    Recommended configuration:
    1. High-end 15" MBP, 2.2Ghz with anti-glare, since you don't like glossy displays.
    2. 8GB DDR3-10600 RAM. Sadly, the DDR3-12800 1600Mhz ram is all sold out on Newegg. Try hunting for them.
    3. 750GB 7200RPM Scorpio Black Hard Drive. Yes, a SSD will speed up your computer a ton but you can't store that many RAW's on a 128GB SSD. The next best is a 7200RPM. Either this, or if you really care about performance, this.

    As for installation, it's very easy. You just have to remember 3 things. Ground yourself (get rid of static), disconnect AC power, and disconnect the battery. Then you can unscrew the bottom and pop out anything you want.

    Sorry, US resident, all prices are in dollars.
     
  13. Journalist thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 22, 2011
    #13
    Thanks for the RAM suggestion: is that as good as (or better) than the default RAM upgrade if I went straight through Apple?
     
  14. Ach111es macrumors regular

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    Oct 23, 2010
    #14

    Is this not true for the 2.0 base 15?
     
  15. edifyingGerbil macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    #15
    I think it's better. the Stock RAM that I got from Apple only scored a 5.9 on the windows experience index. I'm not sure what make it is or what its cas latency is... Plus you save a few hundred quid which you can put towards something else like an SSD or high res screen.


    unfortunately not. I forget where I read it but I think it's on the Intel website if you look up your CPU model number.
     
  16. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #16
    The CAS latency is 9. Look for 9-9-9-24, or at least the CAS latency of 9 if you can.
     
  17. edifyingGerbil macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    #17
    Really? that's funny because the RAM that I bought (which I linked to) feels way better than the stock RAM... But I guess it must be that 1600MHz rather than the CAS lol
     
  18. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    #18
    CAS latency checks for compatibility. MBP's like CAS latency of 9. So if you stick a CAS 11 RAM into a MBP, it's bound to fail. Has nothing to do with speed, AFAIK.
    On the other hand, the Mhz of RAM is totally unrelated to CAS, and determines the speed of RAM.
     

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