The Right Stuff: MB or MBP?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by NuclearBiscuit, Jan 24, 2009.

  1. NuclearBiscuit macrumors newbie

    Jan 24, 2009
    After reading around on this site, it's still unclear to me what would be functional as well as economical for my needs. I've resolved to get a new laptop as well as the 24" ACD. The question is which notebook would be powerful enough for me. I'm not at all concerned with the computer as a status symbol, and I'm only mildly interested in it as an aesthetic object. I'm a fine art photographer who needs to be able to easily run Photoshop CS4. I am not at all concerned with work flow. I want to be able to hookup a Nikon, scan MF negs, and manipulate images. I'm fine with the 13" screen on the Macbook since I'll have the 24" display, nor am I disturbed by the lack of the expansion slot. The question is the disparity between the 9400/9600 and how important that will be for me. How important is it? Will photoshop run nicely on the 2.4 MB with 4 GB ram? Thanks for your consideration.
  2. bbeers macrumors regular


    Dec 14, 2007
    I am currently running a 2.4 GHz MBP with 4GB ram, and I can tell you Photoshop run great. It run fine with 2GB of ram, but I must admit it really really quickly with the 4GB ram.

    When I was looking at get a laptop I was torn between the MB and the MBP like you are. But for me the biggest feature was the Matte screen. The Gloss screen that is on the MB and the ACD super saturates the colors making them look brighter than they really are. Which for most people is not a big deal, but for me as a graphics designer, color mean a lot.

    It all comes down to features. If the MB cuts it for you then go for it. But personally after using my MBP I don't know if I could handle a MB as my primary machine.
  3. Indydenny macrumors 6502


    Jan 5, 2002
    I have the MB as you can see from my sig. I was unsure about the gloss screen but got used to it quickly. I have the ACD at the office and it is a winner!

    I moved up to 4GB of RAM and a larger HD and run several power apps including Photoshop with no problems. I have not owned the new MBP so cannot compare them (although I played with a few at the Apple Store in Indianapolis last night.)

    I much prefer the smaller footprint of the MB as I use it (too much of the time) on my lap.
  4. FX120 macrumors 65816


    May 18, 2007
    Get the macbook, and use the extra cash to get a nicer monitor. The main limitation you'll run into will be the hard drive speed, not the graphics card, so make sure it has a 7200RPM drive.

    Skip the 24" ACD and go for the NEC 2690WUXi 2 if you're planning on using it for photo work. It is a more expensive, but is a much better monitor, on par with the $2000 Eizo 24" displays. Or if you can afford it, pick up the Dell 3008WFP, it also performs VERY well color wise, and has displayport in, not to mention DVI, component, composite, HDMI, ect so you could potentially use it as a TV if you wanted. I really enjoy the extra resolution and size over a 24" display.
  5. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 12, 2005
    ditto. But if you want a MBP 17"...mine's for sale :)
  6. termina3 macrumors 65816

    Jul 16, 2007
    The one thing that worries me is that you're talking about manipulating scans of MF negatives... those are going to be big files.

    I'm not saying that would be a reason to go with the MBP over the MB, but I wouldn't be surprised if someone else mentioned that as a hold-up.

    Also, be aware that many photographers run away from the glossy screens (currently only the 17" MBP offers a matte screen option I'm pretty sure), and likewise avoid that 24" display. I use the 20" ACD and am perfectly happy with colors, etc.
  7. PCMacUser macrumors 68000


    Jan 13, 2005
    If you must get an Apple laptop for this type of work, then I'd recommend the MBP because of its video card and larger screen. I use Photoshop CS4, and one of its new features is that it will use your 3d graphics card to do some of the processing. While it's still early days, and the software is a bit flaky in that department, it's still worth taking advantage of.
  8. NuclearBiscuit thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 24, 2009
    Dazed and Confused: Photoshop on MB

    I posted under digital photography and got some feedback, but I want to be thorough and any help would be appreciated. My situation is this: I want to get a new notebook in the next 3 months. I'm currently running a 2004 Ibook. I'm a photographer, a film photographer, and I develop fine art images. This is my own personal thing, hobby, but I take it very seriously. I'm moving into digital, and I want a computer that will last as long as my Ibook and fully support my artistic work. The most demanding things I will do are run Photoshop CS4 and manipulate medium format negatives. Otherwise, I want a portable computer that travels well and is easy to type on for my academic work.

    What I cannot quite figure out is the relative difference between a 2.4 MB with 4 gb RAM and a MPB 2.53 with a 7200 HD. Obviously, the MBP is faster, but will this in any very immediate way accelerate my work? Will I be crippled with the MB? I'll have an external monitor and hard disk, so essentially my question is to how well the fully loaded MB handles photoshop? From what I can tell, the 9600 is necessary for more demanding video and programming work but not to run Photoshop well. Thanks for your input!
  9. Bengt77 macrumors 68000


    Jun 7, 2002
    I installed the Design Standard edition of Adobe's Creative Suite 4 last weekend, and Photoshop CS4 is running really smoothly on my MacBook. I have the 2,4GHz model with 4GB of RAM. I plan to upgrade the hard drive once the Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GB drives are out. Maybe that will help another bit, although it's running great now.
  10. NuclearBiscuit thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 24, 2009
    Did you consider the MBP?

    Thanks, Ben. Did you consider the MBP at all? Why'd you decide to go for the top MB?
  11. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Mar 17, 2008
    A couple of things here, the MBP buys you a few more inches of very valuable on the go screen real estate and CS4 now uses the video card to speed up processing (very dramatically in some areas). Neither one is a deal breaker as the MBP does cost a significant amount more and as both have some sort of video card now (I think), the performance gap may not be as large as it was on previous generation laptops. Just something to keep in mind.

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