Very Confused...Which MBP is best for my needs?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by BlueDolphins, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. BlueDolphins macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2010

    I know there are a million of these threads, but I'm not computer literate like everyone else here and the RAM and processor and memory stuff is pretty much a foreign language.

    So, I'm pretty much on the market for a new computer. About a year ago I got a Dell Insipon 1420 from Best Buy when they were on sale, I didn't do research because it was a one day sale and I got it at the last hour, so it was very poor decision on my part. Now, it doesn't work as good as I would like. Its slow, noisy and I cannot watch videos and it freezes quite a bit. So I'm quite over PCs or at least Dells.

    I'm a college student looking for a good computer that I can watch videos online, do school work and overall just be a good computer that is fast and does what a want without a lot of freezing and slowing down and most importantly a good battery life (which is why I'm looking at macs). I want a 13.3" screen for easy transport around campus, but thats all I really know. and how do I know if it will work with my wireless router at home?

    Any advice? Is is best to get the MBP with my student discount which is about ~$100 off or get a refurb? Are refurbs good? I've only gotten one refurb electronic device before and that was a camera which only has a few minor problems. So I'm a bit skeptical about refurb products. But the price is certainly a plus.

    I'm looking to spend no more than $1,300... Oh, and I've used macs before for a few years in middle/high school so I'm not worried about no knowing how to use it.

    Thanks for any and all advice.
  2. espressoroast macrumors member


    Feb 3, 2008
    Hello, and shall I say welcome?
    In my opinion, even the cheapest Macbook Pro 13" would serve your needs just fine. Though I would strongly recommend going over the 'Pro' models, their aluminum enclosure alone are worth the difference, again in my opinion.

    I have never bought any refurbished Macs either but many here on the forum swear by them. So you might want to check it out, it seems Apple's refurbished units are generally dependable. But just going by the student discount is also fine.
  3. Azathoth macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2009
    Any modern Macbook / Macbook pro will meet your needs. To be honest I'm sure your Dell will work as well. It just needs someone to set it up right.

    As you don't know how to fix things, then I would suggest you buy a *new* computer, rather than a refurb. And buy it from a real store, not online.

    And maybe buy a book about computers?
  4. P99 macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2009
    The entry level MBP should be sufficient for your needs.

    Refurbs are good. The device has been checked twice or more to make sure it does work right. I would recommend it if you're on a budget. I wouldn't buy one though. I like smelling brandnew :apple: products. LOL
  5. carlgo macrumors 68000

    Dec 29, 2006
    Monterey CA
    I would specifically recommend getting a OSX "dummy" book. Read the Amazon reviews. Then, also get one for the software you use.

    You really interact with the software, not computer stuff.

    My boss, despite my warnings as per above, decided he needed a computer class because he didn't know how to work the program that the business relied on. So, he and his new friends came over to the shop and ruined our entire system with clever power hacks that shut everything down for days....!

    Totally confused, he now just emails his girlfriend and daytrades. Much safer for all of us.
  6. Paul B macrumors 6502

    Sep 13, 2007
    Consider getting the white 13" Macbook and upgrading the RAM + hard drive.
  7. Knowlege Bomb macrumors 603

    Knowlege Bomb

    Feb 14, 2008
    Madison, WI
    This. You can save yourself some money going for the white Macbook over the Pro if you can live without firewire, the SD card slot and the backlit keyboard. It has the same processor and comes with a bigger hard drive so for your needs it may actually be better.

    I opted for the Pro because I prefer the look of the Aluminum casing over the plastic and the backlit keyboard is amazing. With a student discount I got the Pro, 4GB RAM upgrade and Applecare for just over $1400. Not a bad deal at all.
  8. Habitus macrumors 6502a


    Feb 26, 2009
    Where ever my life takes me...
    Welcome to the forum!

    The entry level 13.3" 2.26GHz MBP will meet your needs. This is the same Mac I'm using now and I love it! You can't go wrong with this Mac.

    Best of luck,

    Habitus :apple:
  9. coast1ja macrumors 6502

    Jul 13, 2009
    I would suggest the pro or even MacBook Air. I have use the Air for college and it is wonderful! Get the 1.86ghz with SSD and you will be amazed with the speed.

    Refurbs from Apple are AWESOME!!! They typically have no signs of wear, because most of the time the case has been replaced. They also carry the full Apple warranty and are even eligible for Applecare.
  10. RMXO macrumors 6502a

    Sep 1, 2009
    if you could wait until the end of the month & see if Apple does a refresh on their laptop line. if they do, you could probably get a very good deal for apple's certified refurbished 2009 MBP models within your price range.

    Apple refurb are top notch. They also come with a 1 yr warranty as do brand new one's & you get a nice discount to boot. Wireless networking is very easy so you shouldn't have any worries on connecting to your home wireless router.
  11. BlueDolphins thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2010
    Thanks for everyone's advice. So I think I'm pretty much going to dive in and go for this model rather than the next. Pretty much I need a computer ASAP, the battery on mine is barely lasting an hour and I'm at school 12 hours a day (I don't live on campus, I commute). So I need one soon, and I really don't care about having the latest and greatest, I'm more concerned knowing other people have tried the same system and are happy with it.

    How does this look?
    * 2.26GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    * 4GB 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x2GB
    * 250GB Serial ATA Drive @ 5400 rpm
    * SuperDrive 8x (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)

    * Backlit Keyboard (English) / User's Guide
    * iWork preinstalled
    * Accessory Kit

    Is that too much RAM? Memory? That falls just under my price goal. Pretty much I really don't know if I need that much RAM or Memory. I don't save much on computers (I'm afraid of them failing and save school files and photos on zip drives) so would less be okay or is it best to have more memory with the higher RAM?
  12. Skibrett3211 macrumors member


    Dec 29, 2009
    I believe that the entry level MBP 13". I'm waiting to get one myself for recording music so it will definitely suit your needs.
  13. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    Woah. Zip Drives? Daaaaannngggggg.......

    You could use as much memory as is available. You can never have "too much", as if a machine will slow down if it has too much memory available. Just the opposite, actually. Same with space.
  14. kny3twalker macrumors 65816


    Oct 25, 2009
    Skip the harddrive upgrade. Stay with the 160 GB drive, it should be more than enough for school work. If you are putting 100s of CDs and/or DVDs/HD videos on it, you might want something larger though, and then 250 GB might not be enough.
    Definitely get the memory upgrade. 4 GBs of ram is a good upgrade for the price of $90. It would cost about $90 if you upgrade yourself later at the current rates of DDR3 laptop memory. I wish I would have just done this at the time of purchase when I got mine, but I hoped a DIY upgrade would have been less:(.

    Finally, I agree with everyone who are saying to get the Pro. The aluminum body is worth the price difference alone. Aluminum is much stronger than plastic, and the plastic used on the bottom of the new MacBooks (non-Pro) scuffs very easily from the display models I have seen.

    I bought my base 13 Pro also for school.
  15. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    ditto here. base 13" MBP sounds perfect for your needs! unless you want a bigger screen, which i doubt :)
  16. elpmas macrumors 68000


    Sep 9, 2009
    Where the fresh snow don't go.
    If you need the mbp now then get it. but i don't see how 1 week would hurt :p
    plus, i think it'll be worth the wait. the value of the new mbp would be valued a little more than the late 09 mbp (imho).
  17. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    Everybody is telling you to get a MBP. The advantages of a MBP are that it has a firewire port, and a backlit keyboard. It also has a slightly better screen, but that's about it. The case is aluminum, and is more easily dented.

    the macbook will be just fine, but since it's plastic it won't be dented as easily... and if you dent a Macbook Pro, it voids the warranty.

    I'd personally get a Macbook unless you need something specific that requires a Macbook Pro. Also, unless you plan on getting the mid 15" MBP ($1800 I think?) the video card won't be any good... about on par with the Dell you have now.
  18. kaminokage macrumors newbie

    Jan 13, 2010
    MB/MBP 13"...or maybe some Lenovo (e.g. SL410), not so "glamurous" as MB's, but working just fine.

Share This Page