New to Mac, just looking for some helpful input

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MatthewMark, May 23, 2013.

  1. MatthewMark macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 23, 2013
    #1
    So I am looking into a new laptop for multiple reasons, my current one has some weird issues, and is literally falling apart. However I am stuck in the decade old debate between Mac and PC. While I have some general knowledge there's so much to go through and a lot of the Wiki's have words/terms that fly well past my tech knowledge. For instance, I understand the physical differences between HDD and Solid State but have no idea of their uses. Same goes for dedicated graphics vs integrated. Then things like 3.7 Ghz comes up and I am lost.

    Now before a layout my basic needs I must say that I started by clicking the "best" options on the Mac site and while the price in the end doesn't truly matter I would still like to know where I am spending my money, so I am not spending money where it's not needed. Basically I want to know what I am paying for, and to not pay for a laptop with features I'd never use. (Like my current Sony Vaio that plays Bluray but I own none and most likely will never own any).

    Things that I will most likely be doing on my new unit.
    • Playing Minecraft w/ Mods and normal to high settings
    • Running Traktor Pro 2 and maybe Serato (DJ Software)
    • Storing Music (4-5000 songs) [I do have an external HDD]
    • Playing movies on an external monitor or TV via HDMI
    • Music Production
    • Basic web-browsing (Twitter, Youtube)
    • Skype

    The potential is also there for using this future device for
    • College/school work (Word Processing, PowerPoint)
    • Movie/short film production
    • Photoshop

    Below are Minecraft's recommended settings:

    Recommended Requirements:
    CPU : Intel Pentium D or AMD Athlon 64 (K8) 2.6 GHz
    RAM : 4GB
    GPU : GeForce 6xxx or ATI Radeon 9xxx and up with OpenGL 2 Support (Excluding Integrated Chipsets)
    HDD : 150MB

    Software Requirements:
    Minecraft Release 1.2.5 or newer. Older versions will need to be updated to current versions
    Java (Java SE 6 Update 32 or Java SE 7 Update 4 or newer is preferred)
    Please note that some users experience issues playing Minecraft while using a mismatched version of Java for their operating system (32 or 64 bit), while using certain versions of Java 7, or while multiple versions of Java are installed
    If you have a laptop with an a built-in (integrated) graphics card, rather than a dedicated card, it is highly suggested that you try the demo before purchase.


    Meeting these requirements is a must, but I personally would like to have a laptop the goes beyond just "meeting the requirements" as just a personal comfort.

    I am new hear and have only used the site once or twice so I do apologize for any broken rules or misplaced info. Thanks and I look forward to your responses. I will say that this is not just a Mac specific question, but I feel there are users here with experiences on both platforms. Any suggestions are taken with an open mind as this will be an investment for the next few years. Once again, thanks.
     
  2. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #2
    To aid your decision, and help you along with the technical terms:

    HDD and SSD are simply two different ways to store data. The first uses spinning magnetic platters, the other uses chips. The first is slower by a large margin than the second one.

    An integrated card is one that is on the same dye as the processor, it usually means a much slower card than a dedicated one(on a separate chip) due to size and heat constraints.

    Processor power is measured in GHz, or giga-hertz, or 1 billion hertz. 2.5GHz simply means the processor can do 2.5 billion calculations per second, per core. The higher the number, the more powerful it is. This is the layman's definition, a lot of other factors come into play, but it should cover the basics.


    When reading system requirements, a general rule of thumb is "bigger number = better"

    If they want a 2.0GHz dual core processor, anything with similar speed and more cores, or equal amount of cores and more speed is good.

    They ask for 2GB RAM? If you have more, you're good.

    They ask for 20GB disk space? If you have it free at the moment of installation, you're good to go.

    They want, say a GeForce GT630? If you have a GT630(or higher number), you're good to go.

    See where I'm going with this?

    I'm a strong believer in the whole "teach a man to fish" thingy.



    Edit: With that in mind, depending on how time critical/advanced your DJing and music production is, you go either go for the 13" base, or the base 15"(much more powerful).
     

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