Thinking of Purchasing a MBP Soon [Circumstances]

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by ecstasy, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. ecstasy macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #1
    Alright, I have taken a look around these forums for quite a while (lurker, basically). I must say it is indeed a very lovely one. ;)

    Upon hearing about the news yesterday about the new MBPs, I had to sign up and pose several questions to the members here. First, let me give you some background information to keep you in the loop.

    I'm 17, just graduated and entering college this fall. I've long had the thought of purchasing a MBP 2 years ago after an (accidental) trip to the Apple store on 5th Avenue in NYC (elevator, freakin' awesome, huh?). Anywho, 2 years ago, the MBP was one totally different to what it is today.

    I had recently worked last summer, and saved up a hefty sum of money, hoping to spend the majority of it as a hurrah gift for myself. However, after much persistence, my parents insisted that they purchase a MBP for me as a graduation present. The conditions revolved around 1 notion: find the cheapest price and we'll buy it for you.

    In college, I'll be pursuing a Business-related major, so I believe I need a sturdier MBP rather than a MB (honestly, don't like the 13-inch screen). In addition to this, I'll be doing video editting, blogging, music thumping, movie watching, and a lot of things media-wise. School-wise, I'll need the usual Microsoft Office and accounting programs, which I will worry about later.

    Now that the new MBPs are arriving on the scene, I have a couple of questions:

    1.) After browsing around these forums and specifically, the Apple News discussion sub-forum, I happened to see a bunch of rants and complaints about the replacement of the ExpressCard slot with the SD Card slot. I myself have a Sony P&S camera (I'm prepared to get flamed, btw), and this should work in my favor, right? However, I'm pondering the possibility of purchasing a DSLR (yes, I know what it is) after working this summer. What are the major reasons for complaints in regards to the loss of the ExpressCard slot? I have no clue what it is all about, so if anyone could help me with that, that'd be great.

    2.) The MBP that I was considering was the Late '08 model (the lower-end MBP, I believe). The MBP I'm talking about is shown in this link, at a much reduced price of $1,349, marked down from the original $2,000:

    http://store.apple.com/us/product/FB470LL/A?mco=MjE0NjE5MA

    After showing my parents the refurbished MBP, I received much negative feedback. They refuse the idea of a refurbished MBP, and having had much experience in sales/retail, they would rather purchase a brand-new MBP for me.

    Would this be a great investment and what are the advantages of it over the newer MBPs?

    Wouldn't the new 15-inch, 2.66GHz be the same as the MBP I mentioned above, with the exception that the new MBP has 4GB RAM, 320GB HD, a SD slot, and a 7-hour battery (except that it costs as much as the old MBP => $2,000)?

    ===

    Not too many questions, I know. But I'll be updating and checking back on this thread a lot, so if anyone could offer their own personal opinion and recommendations, I would love you until eternity and do a rendition of Whitney Houston's 'Could I Have This Kiss Forever' for you.

    Thank you. You will soon see a Windows-turned-Apple convert. :)
     
  2. gotzero macrumors 68040

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    Mid-Atlantic, US
    #2
    A computer is never an investment unless you use it directly to make money. If that is the case, then the user is already well aware of exactly what they need and why.

    If the people buying the computer want you to have a new one, then get that.
     
  3. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

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    Jun 9, 2009
    #3
    True, but there's been a lot of complaints and such and people flocking to get the older 2008 unibody MBP.
     
  4. AdamLikesMusic macrumors 6502

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    Jun 3, 2009
    #4
    Perhaps for video editing as you mentioned, a MacBook Pro is needed, but for a business major, a MacBook would more than suffice. (Of course, you don't like the 13 inch screen, so that's a whole different issue!)

    Edit - of course, this was me still considering the 13"'s normal MacBooks and not Pros. My mistake!
     
  5. rogersmj macrumors 68020

    rogersmj

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2006
    Location:
    Indianapolis, IN
    #5
    Everyone's different. Some people like to complain and bitch about the new laptops because of the lack of expresscard slot, but the majority of people never use it.

    As for myself, I bought the new one because it has an even better screen and better battery life than the 2008 model, and because the SD card reader is more useful to me. Until you get up into the REALLY expensive pro-level DSLRs, SD is the most common format. I'm an amateur photographer and I have a Nikon D90 which I love, and it uses SD. My wife's point and shoot also uses SD. So that's a plus for me.

    One thing you'll learn around here is that a lot of people complain because they like the sound of their own voice (or in this case, the look of their own words) and just need to preach about something. There's even a thread on here where some guy is mad that Apple reduced the prices on the Pro line and made it more accessible to people because it lost exclusivity and he doesn't feel as special anymore now that more people can afford it.

    So, seriously, if your parents want to buy you a brand new MacBook Pro, just count yourself lucky and accept it. There's nothing wrong with the new ones; for the vast majority of people, they're a better value.
     
  6. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #6
    ^ Thanks a lot for your replies, Rogers and Adam.

    @ Adam,

    Yes, I realize that the Macbook would suffice, but I would prefer a bigger screen, and that would be the 15" (17" a little too much for a college student).

    @ Rogers,

    I wholeheartedly acknowledge that I am lucky to even get a graduation present, but as I stated, I want to save them as much money as possible, and get a MBP that will satisfy my needs as well. That's my main concern.

    Now that I look at it, the lower-end MBP now (2.53GHz) only has the 9400M. So that leads me to question 3:

    3.) What is the main difference between the NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics (2.53GHz MBP) and NVIDIA GeForce 9400M + 9600M GT with 256MB (2.66GHz MBP)? Is the latter better than the former?
     
  7. Peacemaker macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2009
    #7
    Yes, the latter one will be better. I am in the same situation as you do. If i were you i will go for the 1349 one because there isn't much difference betwen the new 2000 one and the 2.4gz one. The difference is a "better" battery life, better screen (i doubt it though), a bigger harddrive, 2gb more ram and ability to upgrade to 8gb ram. I can upgrade 2gb ram for 70 at most which brings it up to 1419. As you are a student, you can purchuse it from the education store. It is 1849 with discount and you can sell the ipod touch for $150 you get for free which brings it down to 1699. Still will you scarifice $280 dollars for the minor difference and complex procedure? Sell ipod touch and wait for rebate, it is your decision.
     
  8. mach0024 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #8
    would also be interested in an answer to question #3 of ecstasy. Thanks in advance
     
  9. marioman38 macrumors 6502a

    marioman38

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    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    Elk Grove, CA
    #9
    Does your sony not use Memory Stick? Anywho, I believe the Canon Rebel XSi and the new T1i dSLRs have SD. Thanks apple, now I've "got" to give up my Compact Flash XTi when I get the new 15" MBP... :rolleyes:
     
  10. marioman38 macrumors 6502a

    marioman38

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    #10
    The better screen has already been proven, it was on the MR homepage a few weeks ago. The better battery life has been proven in the new 17" uMBP for months now, its great :)
     
  11. lixuelai macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2008
    #11
    Get the prev gen 15" Unibody. Buy a refurb to save you parents some $$$. It is $1350 at the Apple store right now and their refurb is in new condition and have the same warranty.

    edit: LOL you were looking at that one. Great choice. If i were to buy a MBP that is what I would get. Another option is to get the 13" MBP and have an external monitor for dorm use.
     
  12. Peacemaker macrumors member

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #12
    Yes, it has been proven it is better in technical terms but what i mean is you cannot notice any real world difference.
     
  13. ChrisN macrumors 65816

    ChrisN

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    Location:
    Demarest, NJ
    #13
    I just noticed the refurb store and saw MBPs that were the greatest 2 days ago going for 1349, thats a third off which is $650 which is amazing, just telling you.

    ChrisN
     
  14. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #14
    That's what I thought as well.

    I told my parents again, and they say it seems like a great deal, but the idea of refurbished, to them, is "something's screwed up about it, so I'd rather not buy it unless it's brand new."

    So overall, the best purchase would be the refurbished? They're leaning more to the "no" side rather than the "yes."
     
  15. sclough macrumors regular

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    May 23, 2008
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    #15
    Refurbished Apple products are an excellent deal. I've never seen one that didn't look new, and there are pretty solid arguments that they are technically better than new as they've been inspected and tested rather than just shipped right from the factory.

    The only question for you is whether there is a reason to get the newest one. Other than that, there's no question the refurbished units are solid machines. I personally always look there first and would only get a non-refurbished one if they didn't have what I wanted, or if I could find a better deal through one of the vendors doing rebates and other discounts.
     
  16. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

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    Jun 9, 2009
    #16
    That's the main problem; I won't be dorming, so that brings in the portability question and my commuting dilemma.

    On one hand, I would much rather prefer the bigger screen (video/photo editting, movie watching, etc). On the other hand, wouldn't the 13" be more convenient?

    I don't know. I'm stuck in a pickle.
     
  17. mikes70mustang macrumors 68000

    mikes70mustang

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    Nov 14, 2008
    Location:
    US
    #17
    Its a shame your parents are poo pooing the refurb idea. A maxed out non uni 08 MBP would be way better than a base new mbp. Much cheaper as well. But im sure you would like to have the new and best for at least a few months, that seems to be the issue around here.
     
  18. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

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    Jun 9, 2009
    #18
    I agree. Asian parents are really something else.
     
  19. Dwalls90 macrumors 601

    Dwalls90

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    Feb 5, 2009
    #19
    You don't need anything more than the 15" 1699 MBP. If this computer is for schoolwork, the 13" MBP is actually suitable for your needs, and is very cheap.

    The only time you even want to consider the 15" MBP, is for screen size. You're a college kid, drinks will be spilled, backpacks will fall, screen will crack, ect. .. so don't buy a 2.5K laptop! Especially when you don't need one.

    Seriously, buy the 13" MBP for $1199, and upgrade it using RAM from Crucial (if need be), and by spending half as much, you can buy a new one in two years with that money (or buy booze or other stuff ;).

    Trust me, I was in the same situation two years ago.
     
  20. panzer06 macrumors 68030

    panzer06

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    Kilrath
    #20
    +1 on this, Mine was delivered today, I just need to go home and open it up. For $1349, you can't beat it for flexibility. I ordered an expresscard to handle the SD chores my Sony Vaio currently does and the nvidia 9600 will pickup the game functionality from my Sony as well. That way I get to have it all in a single machine for only a bit more than a new MBP 13" base model.

    Cheers,

    PS I will miss the 1080p display and Bluray on my Sony :(
     
  21. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #21
    Oh no. I wasn't even considering paying more than 2,000.

    The main issue here is my want for a bigger screen.

    I guess I'll have to go back to the Apple store and see what floats my boat.

    Typing on an iPod touch is killer. :)
     
  22. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #22
    Exactly. It's a no-brainer. Get it, or perhaps the new low-end 15" MBP without the 9600M. I don't see why you would though. I guess if you need the battery life, get the new low-end model for $1699 (but buy it with the educational discount, which means you'll probably be paying $1549 or something.

    Otherwise, buy the refurb and save money.
     
  23. panzer06 macrumors 68030

    panzer06

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Kilrath
    #23
    ... And right now the 2.53, 4GB, 320GB UMBP is only $1449 refurb. I would have gotten that one if it was out there yesterday. That extra $100 make HD and RAM upgrade unnecessary for the short term.

    BTW, I've owned 3 refurbs in the past and they were as good as new.

    Cheers,
     
  24. ecstasy thread starter macrumors 6502

    ecstasy

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #24
    ^ That seems like the ultimate deal. Must convince. Urrgghhh..


    I also forgot to mention - in addition to college and other stuff I'll be doing, the MBP that I hope to buy soon will also be my main computer. I have a desktop at home, and that will be given to my brother/parents for use, so you can say that the MBP will be my main squeeze.
     
  25. Eclipseon macrumors newbie

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    Feb 24, 2008
    #25
    Wow...I'm also starting college in the fall! ^^ One of my relatives was kind enough to buy me a Macbook Pro as a gift and I tried to pick out the cheapest one possible from the online catalog so that they wouldn't spend too much. I initially wanted the 15" with the 2.4 GHz processor, but after talking with the salesperson at my local Apple Store, my relatives wanted to get me the model with the 2.66 GHz processor so that I wouldn't have to worry too much about my computer quickly growing out of date.

    I mean, really, when it all boils down to it, it's all about what floats your boat :) Not your parents'. I didn't pick the naturally light 13" Macbook because my eyes just couldn't take the small screen! >.< Gah! So that's why I decided to go with the 15" for school. It's not as burdensome in weight as my late Toshiba, so I truly feel that carrying it around campus won't totally kill me in the long run. And since it'll be your "main-squeeze" computer at home, I totally recommend going with a laptop that won't make you go like "Oh noez! My eyes! My precious little eyes!"
     

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