PC user buying first MAC needs some help

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by psywzrd, Feb 6, 2008.

  1. psywzrd macrumors 68030

    Feb 6, 2008
    I'm a longtime PC user and I think I've finally decided to get a Mac (I'm most likely going to install Windows XP as a second OS though, just so I'm covered in the event that I need to run something in Windows). Anyway, I pretty much have it narrowed down to a Macbook Pro because I need the 15" screen vs. the 13" screen on the Macbook (this will serve as my main computer and I need it to be a laptop). I'm just a little confused as to whether or not it's worth it to pay the extra money ($400+) for the 2.4GHz processor vs. the 2.2GHz. I gather that the graphics card is better with the 2.4GHz processor but if I'm not playing games or doing any heavy video editing, does that really matter? For simple every day use (web browsing, email, listening to music, watching videos, etc.) will I notice any real difference with the slower processor? Looking at the comparison chart on Apple's site, I don't see any other differences.

    Also, I'll probably upgrade the HD to the 160GB version since it's just an additional $69 but I think that's about it on the upgrades. I don't think it's worth paying over $200 to go up to the 250GB drive since I could probably do that cheaper on my own and the 4GB RAM option is way too expensive. I do get a federal gov't discount so I'm thinking that I won't be able to get a cheaper price than apple.com (plus I can get some Continental OnePass miles in the process).

    Does this all sound reasonable? I'm so hesitant to pull the trigger because this is a completely new world to me and I want to make sure that I don't have buyer's remorse the second I click the "Buy" button. I also want to make sure I don't buy something that's already outdated and that may have me second-guessing my choice to go with a Mac.

    Thanks in advance for any help!
  2. Eric Lewis macrumors 68020

    Eric Lewis

    Feb 4, 2007
    CANADA? eh?
    dont get ram from apple! its a rip off?

    you the money you save on ram for the processor
  3. MarlboroLite macrumors 6502a


    Oct 29, 2007
    the 13 colonies
    2.4 vs. 2.2 for everyday use will not be noticeable, neither will the graphics card since you don't play games....save the money for other stuff. Also you might wanna wait a week for new ones!
  4. yogi477 macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2002
    Seconded, wait a couple of weeks for the new ones, you will probably get the same as you are thinking of upgrading to but for no extra plus extras I such as multitouch I would think.
  5. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Difference between the models will be imperceptible, since you do not run heavy duty games / 3d rendering software.

    You should get ram yourself (dealram.com, macsales.com). Upgrading ram on your own should take under 2-5 minutes.

    As to HD: get the largest one you want / can afford.

    You might want to get apple care (total 3 years instead of 1 year factory warranty) if you plan to keep it long time.

    MBP are expected updated soon, many people are waiting, but no news at this time to when (it can be next week, it can be a few months), but technology is always improving, for your use, there won't be a difference between current gen and newer MBPs.
  6. Sannekita macrumors regular


    Nov 4, 2007
    I think you'll do just fine with the "cheapest" Macbook Pro, it'll run everything you're planning to do smoothly...
    And yeah, if you have a month to wait i'd put the purchase on hold.
    It should get updated soon, but ofcourse nobody knows. And these waits are killing... join us bwoohahaha (evil laughter)
  7. psywzrd thread starter macrumors 68030

    Feb 6, 2008
    Thanks for the replies everyone. I did read the rumors about an update to the MBP but there didn't seem to be much specific info other than possibly multi-touch and Penryn (and no specific date of course).

    Being new to the whole Mac world, how does their pricing generally work? For example, let's say they come out with an update to the MBP by the end of February (I don't know if that's being overly optimistic but whatever). Will the new version be about the same price as what's available now? Do they then discount the "older" versions significantly?
  8. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Typically, new version will be about the same price, once in awhile prices are changed slightly.

    Old versions will be discounted, and if they have some, will be in the refurb section of store.apple.com
  9. mojopixel macrumors 6502


    Nov 4, 2007
    Somewhere in Time
    I just checked the refurb section of the UK online store and for the first time in a long while they don't have any refurbished macbookpros for sale! hmm...could this be a sign? ;)
  10. ktbubster macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2007
    not really. They come and go throughout the day. I checked the US store early this morning and they had a plethora of 2.2 mbp and 2.4s and even 2.6s. Perhaps more and more people are changing their mind or returning mbps because they heard about the imminent update?

    Either way, You said you get a military discount, but the refurb 2.2s are 1699 (about 1800 including illinois tax) I know that's better then the edu price, is it any better then the other price?

    Then again you wanted an upgraded hd... so nevermind that.

    I just picked up 2x2gig of ram (super easy to install yourself) for 80 bucks or s through new egg. Def think about doing that with whatever you get.

    New models tend to stay the same prices, and the old ones filter to the refurb store, sometimes being discounted a little more then they already are now.... sometimes not.

    P.S. there is this seller on ebay (check the mac mini thread under - what's the catch?) mrstitch ... something selling super discounted apples. He ships sorta slow, but he's gotten good feedback on ebay and here. I got a mini for 469 (hopefully it will ship in a few days) .. he has macbook pros for 1590 no tax brand new. Fishy low prices, but it seems to be on the up and up... just a thought, saving money might be worth it to just install a hardrive yourself or have a authorized retailer do it.

    Just a thought. GL!
  11. psywzrd thread starter macrumors 68030

    Feb 6, 2008
    You're right about those prices on ebay - they're great. It's definitely fishy but my feeling is that I'm always covered as long as I pay with my AMEX via PayPal. Obviously the other bad thing about buying from someone like that is that you can't customize at all (he only offers the matte screen and the 160GB HD in the 2.4GHz model). I guess you can upgrade the HD yourself though. He lists that model for $1850 and the lowest I can get with my gov't discount is $2299 - that's a big difference.
  12. Hankster macrumors 68020


    Jan 30, 2008
    Washington DC
    Just be careful, even with credit card protection you don't want to deal with the situation of getting a false deal. Personally, I'd buy mine from an established dealer like Amazon, MacMall, etc. You never know what you're going to get on eBay, and there IS a reason the prices are so low ;)

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