Trying to decide between a MBP 4,1 and MBA mid-2011

rebelmac

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 11, 2010
41
0
Hi folks,

I'm in need of a Mac laptop and could use some advice.

I'm currently working on an HTML5 game that I want to start porting to iOS. It's currently being developed on a Win7 desktop. But in order to start working (again) on iOS, I need a mac laptop. I could buy a 13" Macbook Air (current model), but I'm a little reluctant because it could be close to a refresh or even a 15" Macbook Air introduction?

A family member has a 15" Macbook Pro (4,1 model) which has the following specs:

2.5Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo
2gb Ram
250gb HD

I can purchase this for about $400. There is 2 small problems with the machine.

1-The latch for the lid is finicky.
2-There is a pink line that runs top to bottom (1 pixel wide) about an 1/8" from the left side of the screen.

The machine is in good condition otherwise.

So I'd like some advice and opinions on whether it seems feasible to pay $400 and use the Macbook Pro until the new Macbook Pros/Airs get a refresh?

Thanks for the advice. Cheers!
 

alphaod

macrumors Core
Feb 9, 2008
22,177
1,231
NYC
If it's your family member can't you ask if you can borrow it for a few months?
 

FuNGi

macrumors 65816
Feb 26, 2010
1,117
30
California
You could also buy a refurb and then feel that your "out-of-date" status was self chosen thus giving you a certain immunity to the inevitability of computer upgrade cycles. Oh, and you'll save money.
 

icanboogie

macrumors regular
Nov 12, 2008
160
5
Berlin
paying $ for a faulty display would constantly bug me, every time I'd see the mentioned pink line.
the 4.1 2,5 ghz machine is other ways still capable of getting done a lot. lion runs well, too.
I would save the bucks for a new refurb mba 13, or, if you can, wait for ivy bridge.
 

rebelmac

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 11, 2010
41
0
If it's your family member can't you ask if you can borrow it for a few months?
This is a very good idea. I can't believe I didn't think of it. I think I'll ask to borrow it and in exchange when I'm ready to buy mine I'll sell it for them on eBay. I can't imagine it would be worth much, but it would probably fetch a couple hundred, you think?

Also, I get a corporate discount with Apple so a new Mac generally costs me the same as a refurb.

Borrowing would also give me a better idea of what I'll need for development when I do buy new. I'm still not sure if I should go MBP or MBA, but there is time to figure that out.
 

NZed

macrumors 65816
Jan 24, 2011
1,136
1
Canada, Eh?
This is a very good idea. I can't believe I didn't think of it. I think I'll ask to borrow it and in exchange when I'm ready to buy mine I'll sell it for them on eBay. I can't imagine it would be worth much, but it would probably fetch a couple hundred, you think?

Also, I get a corporate discount with Apple so a new Mac generally costs me the same as a refurb.

Borrowing would also give me a better idea of what I'll need for development when I do buy new. I'm still not sure if I should go MBP or MBA, but there is time to figure that out.
Ask them before selling?
 

rebelmac

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 11, 2010
41
0
Ask them before selling?
Sorry I wasn't clear. They don't want to take the time to sell it. So after I'm done (in a few months or whatever) I'll sell it for whatever I can get and give the money to them. If they decide to sell it sooner than I can give it back sooner. No big deal really.

Either way I'll get the laptop to use for a bit until I bite the bullet on my own.
 

thundersteele

macrumors 68030
Oct 19, 2011
2,984
8
Switzerland
Don't buy the 4.1

Apple/Nvidia had quality problems with the 8600M GT graphics card that was used in these models. These laptops have a higher than average failure rate due to this problem, and a repair (logic board replacement) is north of $700.
 

Cypther

macrumors member
Jan 15, 2012
61
0
My Macbook pro 4.1 died in 3 years, that's usually how long I keep a laptop for and finally upgraded. Get the 2011, it's a lot faster and it doesn't have the GPU/8600 GT problem.
 

rebelmac

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 11, 2010
41
0
Thank you guys for the info on the GPU issues with the early 2008 MBP. I'm going to help my family member get the MBP tested for the issue since it is displaying a pink/purple vertical line, which I assume could be CPU related.

I suppose even if it has the GPU issue, after replacement it could have it again.

After that, I may have the opportunity to borrow the machine. If the logic board is replaced. I'm sure it could hold me over until the refreshes happen. I'll just have to keep my code in the cloud and be more frequent with my backups.
 
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