Which Macbook/MBP is best for my needs?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jayeskreezy, Jun 5, 2007.

  1. jayeskreezy macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2005
    Ok I'm looking to get a new or refurb mb or mbp.

    I was wondering which do you think is the best for my needs? I want it primarily for video editing on FCE, but will probably dabble into some garageband stuff but mostly video. I only do small video projects and they are personal mostly.

    I do use other programs like photoshop and of course office applications and I want to run windows in parallels if possible.

    Which one do you think I should get? I was going to get the older model c2d refurb, but the price is only $64 diff from a mbp glossy with a edu discount. If they drop it down to $1400 i'd probably end up going that route though. That 6 hour battery life sounds like a dream. As it stands what do you think I should get though? Of course I'd like this to last at least 3 years.
  2. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    'kay - in terms of your application needs, either machine would serve you well.

    I would advise getting an external monitor to do editing (at least some of the time) - if not, the extra screen estate of the MBP would be very handy.

    Are you going to be using anything graphically-intensive? Which machine design do you like best?

    If there is only a 64 buck difference between a MBP or MB, I would plump for the former.
  3. jamminph88 macrumors member

    May 6, 2007
    I have almost the exact same needs for college, but screen size was more of an issue. Is the 15 drastically less portable than the MB?
  4. psychofreak Retired


    May 16, 2006
    If you need your video to look professional, I recommend a matte screen, as it gives much better colour representation :)
  5. jamminph88 macrumors member

    May 6, 2007
    I was thinking about going matte anyway cause i HATE the glare from the glossy
  6. klymr macrumors 65816

    May 16, 2007
    Can I jump in and leech off this thread also (just so we don't see 50 similar threads popping up all week)?

    I too do a bit of video editing/graphics work. I am going into graphic design in school, so I'll be working in the Adobe programs a lot. I'm almost certain I am going to get the 17" w/high res. screen. What I am wondering though, should I go for the 7200 rpm HD? That is a faster drive than the 5400 rpm isn't it (in terms of working on video/graphics stuff)? Also, won't a faster drive drain the battery quicker?

    What I am thinking I'm sold on is:
    17" w/high res screen
    2gb of RAM (and I'll expand it to 4 myself later)
    160gb 7200 rpm HD

    But, I'm kinda torn between the HD and the RAM. I know 4gb is a TON, but for what I do, it'd be helpful. Is Apple RAM any better than other manufacture's RAM? Cause we all know $675 is a lot to add 2gb more RAM (education discounted price), but if it is better, then I'd rather go that route. What suggestions do you all have?
  7. jamminph88 macrumors member

    May 6, 2007
    also, does anyone think that they will release a smaller new "ultraportable" with SR and LED at WWDC?
  8. Aniej macrumors 68000


    Oct 17, 2006
    highly unlikely. just would anger people and again, it does not fall in line with helping MB sales.
  9. chex macrumors regular

    May 17, 2007
    The rumours are that the ultraportable will have a solid state HDD, or some sort of solid state memory, i.e. Robson caching. I would guess that it would come out with Leopard.

    If you want it to last 3 years I would go for the MBP without a doubt. The MBs were out of date the day they were refreshed.
  10. jayeskreezy thread starter macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2005
    well not really other than pshop and final cut express...maybe dreamweaver... I like the price of the mb and the size wayyyy better but I like the keyboard,matte and graphics card better on the mbp but I don't want to spend an extra 800 if I don't have to. I can use that on software and accessories. if I really need the graphics card in the mbp though I will get that.

    can the reg macbook connect to an external monitor?
  11. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    In a bit of a rush, but....

    Yes, the regular MB can connect to an external monitor - you'll need a mini-dv to DVI or VGA connector (as you would with a MBP).

    In terms of what you're going to be using it for, the MB will be more than capable of handling it - and there are benchmarks to prove it! From what you've listed, you certainly don't 'need' the MBP's graphic card.

    You're not alone about preferring the MBP's keyboard - of course, you could also use an extrenal keyboard when using the external monitor.
  12. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    Ideally, you'll be using an external drive as a scratch disk for video editing - and I seriously advise you to if you're serious about video editing.

    There're a couple of tests Barefeats did measuring different hard drives for MBP - don't have the links to hand, but they're easy to find on site and are worth a look and should help you on this. Also, there's a thread somewhere around here about HD speed.

    If memory serves me right Barefeats argued that although 7200 RPM are a lot quicker initially but as they fill up, their speed advantage diminishes. But they are noticeably quicker when doing sustained periods of reading/writing, as would happen with audio and video editing.

    As for the power issue, the 7200s do use more energy - particularly when they're fairly full.

    As for the memory issue, Apple is no better (but as you say a hell of a lot more expensive!) than third-party - just buy and install yourself.

    Wouldn't worry about the RAM now - after all, that's easy to install yourself, the hard drive isn't.

    I would be inclined to go for the 7200 drive now and also an external drive for backing my work and to do editing on... or buy the external as soon as it was feasible.

    Hope that helps....
  13. klymr macrumors 65816

    May 16, 2007

    I really don't want to have to wait another 4-6 weeks, but that might be my best option here. I know that I'll be adding either bootcamp or parallels, so how would that affect things? I'm sure my HD will be fairly full, but I can't say really at this point. Opening the computer and upgrading the HD will void the warranty, correct?

    This is the test you are probably thinking of, right? http://www.barefeats.com/mbcd7.html

    I am just wondering, which drive will suit me best? I hate this game, lol!
  14. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    Yup, that was one of the tests - here's the other - http://www.barefeats.com/5472.html

    As for installing Boot Camp etc, the only real issue is that you're bound to be using more storage to carry that extra software but that's it.

    Yup, opening the MBP and install a HD will void the warranty - plenty of people have claimed they've done it, but I fear I will never be in their number. obviously a Apple dealer can do it no probs (at a price).

    An extra 4-6 week wait is far from perfect - but it boils down to how much you think you'll need that extra 90GB.

    If you're happy investing (eventually sometime) in a couple of external drives so you've plenty of space for storage, backing up and editing, go for one of the 160GB HDs - particularly if you're going to be mainly working in the same place rather than moving about.
  15. klymr macrumors 65816

    May 16, 2007
    I was actually thinking of investing in an external HD sometime soon. Would it be wise to go for the 5400rpm 160gb drive if that is the case? And would I see an increase in speed if I used an external drive at 7200rpm's or so? I'm just kinda confused at what to do here.
  16. dpope macrumors member

    Sep 5, 2006
    I have a rev 2,2 MBP (C2D) and no, I really don't think its less portable than the MB (though I've never owned the latter). First, its only about 0.25 kg or so heaver (if I recall) so the MBP is much lighter for its size. Actually Apple (the bastards) have made the new MBPs _even lighter_. The specs on the website now say 2.45 kgs whereas the rev 1 MBPs were 2.56 (as were the rev 2's I think) so now the difference is even less significant.

    Moreover, the MBPs look gorgeous (for people who care about such things). The form factor is spectacular and they look much sleeker than FatBooks (as I like to refer to the old powerbooks).

    I'm a bit fond of mine as you can tell and I carry it around with me in a backpack if i got out to cafes on weekends and always back and forth to work. Of course having a laptop with you is not the best idea if you're walking for hours but the MBP won't put you out more than the MB. The only advantage of the latter as I see it is that its physically smaller but I can't imagine how often that will help (it also has better Linux support if you care about such things ;->).
  17. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    If you can afford the extra ($150?) for the 160GB 7200rpm without blanching too much, go for that as it's slightly nippier than the 5400rpm in normal computer usage. However, if you would rather not spend that much (e.g. buying an external instead), the 5400rpm will still serve you very well and I doubt whether you'll be able to notice the difference.

    Apple always used to (and probably still do) recommend that if you were using an FW external drive for video editing with FCP - use a 7200rpm one (which is the standard speed anyway) as this will be noticeably quicker than editing with a slower drive.

    There's a thread about what drive to get - http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=310340 - you're not alone in being unsure!!
  18. klymr macrumors 65816

    May 16, 2007
    Very good. I guess the wait goes on. I'm biting the bullet and going for the 7200rpm drive. Besides, what's another $90 (education discount) and 4-6 weeks gunna hurt? Thanks for all the help and support Igantius. Besides, who knows what other "goodies" it might come with since it will be shipped AFTER WWDC? Here we go....
  19. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    A pleasure - just hope you feel the same way once you've got it :D

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