MP or MBP for college

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by paul17win, Jan 21, 2008.

  1. paul17win macrumors member


    Jul 9, 2007
    Ok so i really want an apple computer to replace my 9 year old imac. but here is my problem. i am tired of waiting for a MBP that i would use next year in college. so i was thinking about buying a base model Mac Pro to hold me off until then, that way i could get going with the photography business????

    Thanks for the opinions and advice?
  2. velocityg4 macrumors 68040


    Dec 19, 2004
    Speed wise, buying a Mac Pro now and then switching to a Macbook Pro later would be quite a downgrade. With the slower Hard Drive and CPU. I would just say get the Mac Pro and stick with it. Then you can run just about any display you want and have a quick Hard Disk with much greater capacity.

    Unless you actually need a laptop I say just avoid them. I found them to be useless in college. Note taking is much easier with pen and paper especially with teachers who jump all over the place in their topics and draw diagrams. Any research should be done with books in the library. For the most part the internet is a poor source of information except for brief overviews.
  3. barijazz macrumors 6502

    Dec 29, 2007
    If you travel a lot and are on the go then you probably need a mac book pro. But if you can live with leaving the computer in one place the extra power will be worth it.
  4. paul17win thread starter macrumors member


    Jul 9, 2007
    so your saying that you never had a use for a laptop in college???
  5. T-Stex macrumors 6502

    Jan 15, 2006
    I've recently (within the past year) graduated from college with a degree in Computer Science & Engineering, and I found that for notetaking during class, I'd only use pen and paper. However, I'd disagree with the statement that research should only be done with books in the library. Many colleges today have online access to large databases of published scholarly material, like JSTOR, which allows access to much more material than you'll be able to find in your local library. In addition, my university had online access to other libraries' material, and several other online-only sources. If you're talking specifically about sites like Wikipedia and Yahoo! Answers, I'd agree with the statement that the internet is a poor source of research-worthy information. However, the amount of quality research resources available at colleges and universities today truly put someone who only uses printed material available at a local library at a disadvantage.

    In addition, only having a desktop limits the locations in which you'll actually be able to do work, unless your college has a fairly large amount of public-use computers, which I never liked using anyway. I found myself always taking my laptop to the library, study sessions, and quiet places to do work. If your college is anything like most, you may need to prepare to deal with a lot of noise in your dorms, which can make doing work on your desktop next to impossible.

    Also, are you going to be doing any work in which you'd be actually using the processing power of the Mac Pro? I can't say for certain, but I'd think that a MacBook Pro (and an external display if you need some more real estate) would be more than enough for your needs.

    Sorry about the lengthy post, but I hope that helps a little bit.
  6. paul17win thread starter macrumors member


    Jul 9, 2007
    i plan on doing a lot of photography work on it. i would get a mac pro but my main reason for getting a MB/P would be for college. so then the idea of buying the MP now and then getting the laptop for college in 6 or 7 months.??
  7. T-Stex macrumors 6502

    Jan 15, 2006
    I'm not a photography guru by any means, but I'd think that a MacBook Pro would have more than enough horsepower to handle your photography needs. If you need a computer in the meantime, you could go with a Mac Pro, but if you're only going to keep if for a few months, you're going to lose some money on the resale value afterward.

    Since you're looking to get a machine for college that, presumably, will need to last for four years or so, I'd hold off on getting a MacBook Pro for a few months to see if any refreshes come.
  8. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Dec 6, 2007
    Two things:

    1. You don't need a Mac Pro in college unless you're a college professor. In the CS department. With tenure.
    2. The Macbook Pro will do just fine.
  9. hockeysc23 macrumors regular

    Sep 6, 2007
    I had a laptop for college and agree that it is not really needed. It is nice to have portability but you tend to break a lot of things in college and having money to afford repairing a laptop can make your budget tight.

    Also as originally stated paper and pen work best for taking notes. I would say go for the Mac Pro if you need that kind of horsepower to accomplish what you need. If you find you really need a laptop you can always get a macbook or other laptop after working for a summer. You will find your tastes will change and what you thought you need now you probably won't need in a couple years.
  10. bluecluee macrumors member

    Jun 8, 2007
    If you can afford it... have you considred a Mac Pro and a MacBook down the road when you start school?
  11. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    I went to Drexel for a year (long story, but I can share my experience :p ) and the power of the Macbook pro was amazing. It allowed me to frag my enemies with ~80FPS, and I never had any lag!

    But if you're just talking about what a "normal" person uses a laptop for, unless your program recommends a specific computer (such as a 17" or a computer with a dedicated GPU) the MBA is overkill. I got by with a 1.4ghz Pentium M for quite some time, because all you really need a laptop for is to be able to write papers where you can be comfortable.

    I never used my laptop for taking notes.. but it was sometimes handy if I didn't have time to print out slides, so I could read my prof.'s fine print on the powerpoint.
  12. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    I just got the base MBP. Mainly, for the larger screen size.
  13. DarthTreydor macrumors 6502

    May 25, 2007
    Richmond, VA
    If I were you I would get a mac pro. I had a laptop in college and all it did was sit on my desk. The mac pro will last you for years. You can use that for all your heavy lifting then if you decide you want something for notetaking or typing papers in the library you can find a used iBook or even a cheapo pc laptop.
  14. SheriffParker macrumors 6502a


    May 24, 2006
    The land of love
    If you can afford a Mac Pro, and a MBP, why don't you just get them both? It doesn't sound like cost is really an issue.

    Will the Mac Pro hold you over? Yes. Its blisteringly powerful.
  15. Jphillippe macrumors regular


    Oct 15, 2007
    Miami, Florida
    I love laptops, but i don't think its a necessity for college. At least for me, I would lose track of what went on in class and I would log online and start rambling through places..When I did take notes I thought it was kind of annoying, trying to draw was so much comfortable with pen and paper. If it is for note-taking and stuff get the Mac Pro, but if you just want to have the portability of carrying your photographs and all of that, then the MBP.
  16. theBB macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    I'd buy an iMac for the larger screen and better performance and a Macbook for portability while writing papers at the library etc. instead. Total cost of the two would probably be close to a Mac Pro by itself.
  17. paul17win thread starter macrumors member


    Jul 9, 2007
    if i were to purchase a Mac Pro i would probably end up buying a MB in college just for portability. Haha and no i cant afford the MBP and the MP!!!
  18. foidulus macrumors 6502a

    Jan 15, 2007
    Depends on the facilities in your department

    At Penn State, most of the art department buildings seemed to have labs stacked with powermac g5s(this was back before the intel switch), if your department has something like this then you really should go for the macbook pro, since you can use the extra cpu power when you need it but will still have portability in your own machine.

    Even if they don't have labs like that, I would still go towards the macbook pro. People on here seem to be focused on using the laptop to take notes, which it can, but isn't well suited to that task. What they are suited for is collaboration though. You can take your laptop to meet fellow students in the commons area or coffee shop(with wifi of course) and discuss your assignments and be able to try out stuff with them there. And of course if you go to see a professor during office hours it could be very helpful to have all your projects, data, and tools with you.
  19. zioxide macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2006
    Get the MBP. Laptops are extremely valuable in college.
  20. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

    Oct 31, 2006
    I take my laptop to school with my everyday. I am a CS student, but lots of people have laptops. A MBP is plenty powerful for photo stuff. The best combo would be MP and macbook if you could eventually afford it.
  21. Karpfish macrumors 6502a


    Sep 24, 2006
    Do you really wanna be that kid with two expensive computers in college?
  22. paul17win thread starter macrumors member


    Jul 9, 2007
    no i wanna be the kid with a quality computer in college
  23. gescom macrumors regular


    Dec 31, 2007
    Westerville, OH.
    MBP, it has staying power. It might even last you all 7 years... lol.:D
  24. Karpfish macrumors 6502a


    Sep 24, 2006
    Since when is an MBP not a quality computer? Just go with an MBP, and if you want get an external display. IT is plenty powerful. I do a lot of photo processing on mine and it is pretty fast. Not as fast as my MP was, obviously, but still very good.
  25. ArmyKnight12 macrumors 6502


    Sep 13, 2007

    Go with the MBP. It's really helped me out in college.

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