So I plan to switch... questions from a first timer

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jgrahamc, Jun 12, 2007.

  1. jgrahamc macrumors newbie

    Jun 12, 2007
    I've been using PCs for years (first using Windows all the way from 3.0 up to XP) and then I switched to Linux (currently using Ubuntu). My job means that it's important that I can run both Windows and Linux (which means I'll be getting a virtualization solution quickly with my Mac) and the fact that (a) the Mac is now Intel and (b) my wife's old iBook is a lovely machine means I'm ready to switch.

    Here's what I'm thinking of buying (I'd like people's thoughts on my thoughts):

    MacBook Pro 17" 1920x1220 Matte Display
    2Gb RAM
    160Gb 7200 RPM Drive

    Now my thoughts:

    1. I'd like to have 4Gb of RAM, but adding 700 EUR for 2Gb is way over the top. It looks like I could buy 4Gb of RAM suitable for the MBP for way less than that from a reputable source. Apple is really asking a lot there.

    2. I've seen the Glossy displays and I don't like them, I think the extra screen real estate is going to be useful for me hence the larger display (this will be my _only_ machine and I don't use an external display because I travel a lot). One concern is that fonts will be too small to read until Leopard comes along.

    3. Faster hard drive rather than larger hard drive. Although 250Gb drive would be nice I'm concerned that virtualization is going to be a little slow with the slow drive and hence I'd go for the faster drive (but I'm no expert in this area so would be interested in people's thoughts).

    Will use VMWare instead of Parallels because I can pull in my existing VMs. Would appreciate any advice from Apple old hands before I click "Buy".

  2. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
    If you know what you are doing that's sensible, though keeping some Apple RAM is worthwhile in case it breaks (for troubleshooting).

    This may be an issue, but you can always run the screen at a lower resolution until Leopard, it'll just make everything a little blurry.
    A 250GB 5400rpm HD is "faster" than a 160GB 5400rpm because the data is closer together, so I'd say a larger HD is generally preferable, but it depends how much the speed is worth.
    This is perfectly sensible. I only use OS X though I believe VMWare and Parallels are both excellent.
  3. jgrahamc thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 12, 2007
    Good point on the memory, thanks for the tip.

    As for the hard drive, does anyone have a comparison of speed between the a 160Gb 7200 RPM drive and a 250Gb 4200RPM?


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