Which Build of MacBook Pro to get?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by SavageLLama77, Feb 14, 2007.

  1. SavageLLama77 macrumors regular

    Jan 5, 2007
    Hey everybody,
    So, I've decided to buy a 30'' ACD (or an 'updated' version of it that may come out in April). And, I want a laptop to go with it (MBP is only option). So, naturally, I'd want the cheapest MBP I could find. But I still think I may need 2 gigs of RAM and maybe 256 megs of VRAM. Let me say it right now, I'm still in High School and I run no professional applications. But I do deeply want a computer that can handle lots of 'consumer apps' at the same time (I NEED fast transition between my simultaneous use of Safari, iChat, Mail, Microsoft Office/iWork, and Quicktime). I really don't need overkill RAM or VRAM as I plan to use only these apps in the next few years. I just experience a lot of slowdown when I have several tabs in Safari open or I'm downloading several videos. For these purposes, which MBP build is best for me, considering I'll be hooking it up to a 30'' ACD and the fact that new 'LED-backlit' (dont know what they are) MBPs are rumored to arise soon. Feel free to clarify anything with how I'll use the laptop. Is 2 gigs of RAM and 256 megs of VRAM enough, too much, just right (for my purposes)? Thanks!
  2. TBi macrumors 68030


    Jul 26, 2005
    I'd say you'd be best served with a standard mid range 15" MBP which comes with 2GB and 256MB as you want.

    Personally it's the only model i'd go for, especially if you ever want to run games or vista aero on that gorgeous screen.
  3. SavageLLama77 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 5, 2007
    I'll for sure get a 15'', but do you know any sweet deals on a computer like the one you mentioned? lol, 2499 is not in my price range if I'm gonna get a 30'' ACD ya know? I don't really play computer games, just Xbox 360. But I do like the fact that the computer would last me 3 years without making me yearn to buy another one. And for future reference, I'm not settling for anything less than a new 30'' ACD (the display will DEFINITELY last me for a long time whereas I can always upgrade laptops). So, help me! :)
  4. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Feb 2, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Check the refurb store but it it's not going under 2 grand
  5. NorCalLights macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2006
    If you're still in high school and you don't run any pro apps, why not get the 23" display and a Macbook? Max out the RAM on your Macbook and it will run the 23" no problem. You'll save a bunch of money, and I promise you won't see any slowdown. Best of all, it will still impress your friends.

    Or even better, get the Dell 24" display like I did, and hook up your Xbox to one of its many inputs.

    Honestly, I'm a pro user and I don't miss the 30" in my pro apps... I can't imagine you will either.
  6. xfiftyfour macrumors 68030


    Apr 14, 2006
    Clemson, SC
    Honestly, I can't imagine why a high school student not working at all with professional programs needs a 30" ACD and a MBP? Trust me, Safari, iChat, Mail, Office, and Quicktime will run fine on even the older G4's, so why such a fast computer and large screen? Save that $4k and put it towards college.. jeez.
  7. mopppish macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2005
    You're in high school, don't run pro apps, and are looking at a 30" plus MBP?
    I'm a college student, I DO run pro apps (Logic) as a way to supplement my income, and I feel guilty about my MBP and 19" Acer.
    You NEED a dose of reality. Buy a car. Learn an instrument. Save a few thousand for when you graduate (trust me, you'll wish you had it some day).
    That 30" will look pretty with ichat, office, and safari all open at once at first, but I can't imagine that using all of that screen real estate is important to anything but maybe your social life. That's why macs have a thing called Expose and hot corners. Need to switch to ichat? Flick your mouse to the corner of the screen, and their it is. I use it all the time when I'm mixing album-length recording projects in Logic Pro on my 15". I don't even always use the external display.
    *end cynical, self-righteous rant*
    P.S. Get used to responses like this and the one above. You kind of asked for it.
  8. SavageLLama77 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 5, 2007
    So, you would rather I get a regular MacBook, that would cost about the same as a cheap MBP. I only mentioned getting the 2.33 ghz MBP cause the extra RAM and VRAM will help on a 30inch? Any difference? Thanks for the response!
  9. TBi macrumors 68030


    Jul 26, 2005
    I'd agree with mopppish. You don't need a 30" screen. People have worked for years on 14" monitors and have done just as good work as people now with 30" screens. Even the screen on a 15" MBP is big enough for most uses.

    Plus the macbook is a lot cheaper than a MBP, at least 500 cheaper for an almost exact same configuration. 330 MHz isn't really that much faster you know. Plus you don't need a 15" screen when you have a 30" monster.

    Personally, and i work, i'd rather buy a 24" screen and use the 1000 i saved to go on a nice old holiday for myself. Think of all the sights you could see, all the places you could go for 1000 dollars. Isn't that worth more in life than an extra 6"s?
  10. ruZZ.il macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2007
    for what you say you'd use it for, 30" really is overkill.. so is MBP.. I'd get myself a MB, 24" dell and use the rest otherwise.. but I got a friend like you. . so I know what you mean.. anyway, seriously.. you wouldnt utilize it.. why not get interested in stuff, like audiophile grade headphones if you're looking to spend the $. or save it till something else comes along.. upgrade your car sound? buy me an ACD? :D
  11. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000


    Jul 1, 2004
    First off...Why in the world do you need a 30" ACD???

    you talk about overkill on RAM and VRAM....but the 30" is insane for a high school student running safari and ichat.

    get the better 15" model and maybe a 20" external if you find you need more space...
  12. SavageLLama77 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 5, 2007
    I also would plan on using it as a second TV, but yeah I know that a 30'' is almost decadent for me. But if you consider it a second TV it's not complete overkill. Any more thoughts? Thanks for the response!
  13. TBi macrumors 68030


    Jul 26, 2005
    If you want a second TV then get a 1080P LCD tv. You'd probably get a 42" for the price you'll pay for a 30" ACD and it'll be a proper TV with a nice high resolution for use as a second monitor (1920x1080).

    On the other hand, the 24" dell has extra inputs to allow it to be used as a TV (component, composite, s video) whereas with the apple you'll need to use a special USB/firewire adapter, which won't be as good quality AND you'll need to have the mac on all the time. You can't just turn on the "TV" without having the mac on. With the Dell or the 42" screen you could sit back on your bed with the laptop and have the tv on in the back ground.
  14. suneohair macrumors 68020


    Aug 27, 2006
    Most of what is being said was my sentiment in your other thread. To be blunt, you are wasting someones money.

    The 30" does not make a good TV. It doesn't have the flexibility of the Dell, even if you just consider it won't take an analog signal. That rules out pretty much every device that doesn't have DVI or HDMI. There are better options.

    A 1080P HDTV would be better option; it would be most cost efficient, more useful, and larger. However, if you are going to hook it up to a computer I would not recommend anything larger than a 37" if you are going to be sitting close. The pixel pitch is much higher and it won't look very good since you would be stretching 1920x1080 over 37"+ inches. I would stick in the 37" range, that is the sweet spot for 1080 on a computer. You can get one for less than $1000, and by the time you buy they may be cheaper and newer technology. If you wanted a 42" like mentioned above you could easily get a good 1080P one for $600 less than the ACD (and thats on the EDU discount).

    As stated, you could also get the 24" Dell. It has VGA for your 360, and DVI-D for your Mac. It is a good display, and since you arent doing anything in the pro realm you don't really require a super high quality display, not that the Dell isn't.

    Also consider this. If you are going to be sitting 1-3 feet away, you are most likely going to have to turn your neck to see the whole screen. I have worked on a 30" and I find my neck hurt a lot. And I work with graphics, so having the real estate is nice. If you are going to be using general apps, you probably won't have them all in view at the same time. Especially when you have things like expose and spaces coming in leopard.

    Now, if you are getting a display this big. Does it really make sense to get a 15" notebook? The Macbook is more portable and just as capable for your uses. If you aren't gaming the graphics is a moot point and the extra VRAM won't really help in driving a large display. Get the Macbook with maxed RAM and I am pretty sure you won't notice much different and you have a smaller computer to bring around campus.

    I really think you should rethink your decision. A 37" HDTV and a Macbook would be just fine for your uses. It would give you much more flexibility, if you meet someone at school and he wants to over his playstation or wii, you won't be able to hook it up to an ACD. Heck if you decide you want a wii or playstation, you won't be able to use it.

    I hope you that helps.
  15. jordygreen macrumors 6502


    Dec 26, 2006
    London, UK
    Some really good advice their ^^^really the 30" is pretty pointless if your not using Pro apps.
    I would suggest the 24" Dell because it has all the etxtra inputs which will be great plugging xbox 360 and using it as a possible TV too. Good resolution more than you should need. For the MBP i would only go for the low MBP because 0.16GHz is hardly anything and you can upgrade the ram yourself super easy for cheaper!!

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