Should I go with a 13" Macbook or 15" Macbook Pro?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by DELTAsnake, Sep 9, 2008.

  1. DELTAsnake macrumors 6502

    DELTAsnake

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    Jul 18, 2008
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    Australia
    #1
    I've been looking at laptops with 13" screens because I don't want a heavy laptop like my current 15" which I think is about 5kg or 6kg. But after veiwing some 13" laptops in person I'm begining to wonder if 13" is to small.

    I found the text was almost to small to read on the 13" laptops I looked at.

    I didn't get to see a Macbook or Macbook Pro in person as the local Apple reseller had sold out, so I'm really unsure if 13" is too small for me in a Mac.

    I am planning to do all my web browsing, media listening/veiwing and most important of all, schoolwork on it. I plan to use Firefox, iTunes, Word, Powerpoint, Outlook (via VMware) or Entourage.
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #2
    There's no substitute for getting some hands-on time with both. This isn't a decision to make without seeing them first-hand, especially if you have doubts.
     
  3. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #3
    I have had 13" and 15" screens and the 13" doesn't bother me at all. It is big enough for me and while it weighs just a little less than the 15" Pro, it feels and carries a lot less IMO. I guess it depends on what you will be doing on it(for what you said the Macbook will do all you need very easily). For what I do the Macbook is perfect. I didn't care for my aluminum Macbook Pro. I sold it(didn't lose any money) and bought the black Macbook. It was a good decision for me. The wifi is a lot better with my Macbook than my Macbook Pro and the portability is better for me. Others might disagree, but I'm talking in my experience. Most people who buy the Macbook Pro don't really need it (from the experiences I have had with friends who bought them).

    Good luck on your decision. Either way you are getting a great laptop.
     
  4. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

    Joined:
    May 27, 2006
    #4
    Buying a MacBook Pro is like lighting money on fire in your case. You don't need the extra functions that it has.

    As for the text being "too small", I have no clue what you're talking about. I have never encountered any problems with this on my MacBook and I never get eye strain or have other problems using it. It is a great computer.
     
  5. okrelayer macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    #5
    I bought a macbook in febuary, and while i love it, i think for my needs i want a 15 inch screen.

    When apple refresh's the line up of the macbook pros i will sell my macbook on ebay, then buy the pro. There is NOTHING wrong with the macbook, its all about what you plan on doing , or if you feel you NEED the larger space.

    "Spaces" helps out tremendously concerning the smaller screen size. like the dude above me, either way your getting a fantastic laptop.
     
  6. iAfrica macrumors newbie

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    Jun 6, 2008
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    South Africa
    #6
    Get the right tool for the right job...something like that.

    I had the same issue before deciding on a white Macbook, for what you described as the things you will be doing with the Macbook, getting a Pro would be an over kill.

    Don't worry about screen real estate, I come from a 17" world and got used to a 13" with no problem.
     
  7. dingus macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #7
    I personally found the 13" MacBook to be a bit small. Being accustom to the real estate provided by a big retarded desktop monitor, jumping down to a much smaller screen size took a bit of getting used to and was one of two reasons why I came to regret not going with a MBP. The other was viewing angles. Compared to the MBP, the MB viewing angles, both horizontal and vertical, are crap. I know this doesn't bother everyone but for me it was an issue as I watch plenty of DVDs and downloaded media from my couch, bed, and whatever ridiculous position in a chair feels right at the time. Throw in a second person trying to watch something with you, her little hand constantly adjusting the laptop one degree at a time in her direction, and after a while it's like, why am I even dating you? Of course this problem may be remedied when the next models come out but it was enough for me to sell mine and wait to see what Apple has to offer in a few weeks.
     
  8. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #8
    I have never had problems with viewing mine from angles. No more than when I had my Pro. Looks the same to me. Of course the Pro has a better screen(costs a hell of a lot more also--so it should), but IMO the difference isn't that great.
     
  9. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

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    Seattle, WA
    #9
    I moved from a MacBook to a MacBook Pro and find the Pro to be a better and more capable machine, though I am not a heavy-hitting user. I also like it has more expansion options (FW800, ExpressCard) so it should have a longer "service life" which helps amortize that extra cost.
     
  10. pointycollars macrumors regular

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    Cincinnati
    #10
    For what you need it for, I think the 13" MacBook will be perfect. It doesn't sound like you need the extra oomph and screen size of the MBP - plus as mentioned before the wireless reception on those MacBooks seems to be better than the MBP from what I've heard, so if you're on-the-go all the time or in class in school, I think you'll find it's a much better solution. And of course, lighter on the wallet :)
     
  11. Chris Rogers macrumors 6502a

    Chris Rogers

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    #11
    This topic actually sparked a question.

    Since the MBP is an overall powerhouse and has a better graphics card would the overall experience of watching a DVD be that much better? Forget the screen size in this question since it will be mostly opinion on whether or not a bigger screen is better.
     
  12. Igantius macrumors 65816

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    #12
    Although there has been some good advice on this thread, I think this one is the best!

    Personally, I use my MB a lot more for work than I had intended and haven't had a problem with the screen. When I bought it, I also got a monitor connector in case I wanted extra screen estate.
     
  13. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #13
    That graphic card in the Pro will also blow up according to most people. For that reason alone, I wouldn't buy a current Pro.
     
  14. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #14
    Agree completely with ggstudios, excellent advice. Both are powerful and well-made machines, and both are very portable, so you'll get an excellent computer, whichever you buy. Others on this forum have recommended the MBP for gaming and other high powered tasks; I recommend it for the superb screen - it is not simply the size (although like some other posters, I have also had a 13" screen, a Sony, which was very good - indeed, my first laptop was a 10" Olivetti which was very good in its day) of the 15" MBP screen but the sheer quality; as notebooks go, the 15" screen (and the 17" but you are not looking at that) of the MBP is matched for quality only by some of the Sony Vaio models. Nothing else touches it, and certainly not the MB.
    Cheers and good luck
     
  15. Chris Rogers macrumors 6502a

    Chris Rogers

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    #15
    ok, but this doesn't really answer my question and you forgot to mention that MBs have cracks in their plastic according to most people. So does that mean no one should bother w/ an apple laptop? No these problems don't affect absolutely everyone and as long as you have apple care so what. :)

    Can anyone else answer my question a few posts up?
     
  16. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #16

    A little common sense would tell you that a DVD would look better on a Pro. Larger screen/better graphics card.

    BTW there is a big difference between a crack and having a graphic card go out. Many have said the graphic card could go out longer than the Applecare warranty is in effect even if you get the additional 2 years of coverage.

    Buy the Pro. Seems like that is what you want.
     
  17. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    #17
    The text is the same on both screens. :confused::confused:

    Although it's smaller on the high resolution version of the 17 inch display.
     
  18. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    May 27, 2006
    #18
    I don't think there will be any noticeable difference in the way MacBook renders a DVD compared to MacBook Pro.

    Do you guys on the MacBook Pro fanwagon not feel a little stupid buying a computer which is vastly more expensive just because it has a few things which make it seem better but which you never ever use?
     
  19. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #19

    They certainly won't admit it if they do.
     
  20. adrian.oconnor macrumors 6502

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    #20
    The MacBook is great for general use and in many ways it is almost perfect.

    It is, however, lacking in two ways: Speed (because of the shared memory graphics), and back-lit keys.

    If you're working in darkened rooms much, like lecture theatres or maybe just your lounge in the evening, back-lit keys make a massive difference.

    Speed is only an issue once you start doing intensive stuff - Parallels, XCode, anything Adobe -- that kind of stuff. It might also be better on the more recent models. My iMac, with very similar specs, feels way faster than the MB.
     
  21. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #21
    Parallels works great on my MB. Plus a simple usb flexible light will give you backlit keys for about 8 bucks.
     
  22. Chris Rogers macrumors 6502a

    Chris Rogers

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    #22
    I'm sensing a little unnecessary hostility but I'll try again...

    Not trying to see which is better. I meant disregarding the screen size, since that is purely preference, is there that big of a difference between the MB and MBP screen qualities when watching DVDs?

    Great idea
     
  23. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    Yay Area, CA
    #23
    the weight difference between the 13" and the 15" is only 0.4 lbs. If you can't lift 0.4 lbs, I feel sorry for you.
     
  24. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

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    #24
    You missed the point others were making and for that I feel sorry for you.
     
  25. VoR macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 8, 2008
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    UK
    #25
    The graphics card and cpu won't make any difference at all to how a dvd looks.

    The screen quality and size is something, like was mentioned earlier, that only you can decide by trying them up close yourself. I don't have either laptop so can't really give you my opinion. Personally I think 14.1" 4:3 is the ideal laptop screen size.
     

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