Which MBP to purchase to match my college needs?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by VitruviusMan, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. VitruviusMan macrumors newbie

    Jun 20, 2012

    I'm a current college freshman that needs a serious upgrade on my laptop for my next year. I'm currently using an old Sony Vaio laptop for my college needs, which include an even mixture of Computer Science and Art classes. I've finally saved enough money to purchase a MBP and I'm so clueless when it comes to the new line that I would like some assistance in which one to pick. I know for sure that I want go for a 15', but I do have some room for expansion if need be. Here's just a basic list of things I need my computer have:

    * Lots of RAM for large applications (Adobe Works, Autodesk Maya, etc.)

    * Large amounts of processing power

    * Boot Camp Windows with ease

    * Play current-gen games with ease

    Since I'll be doing lot's of my artwork on the computer, I thought about the Retina display, but I heard that I would have to update my RAM through apple since it's soldered to the logic board. Any suggestions?
  2. gokart mozart, Jun 20, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012

    gokart mozart macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2011
    The retina model should do the trick. So would the regular 15" MBP with the hi-res upgrade, though.

    Yes, the RAM is soldered on. You can't upgrade after the fact. Even through Apple, it seems. So you'll have to order it now with RAM upgraded right off the bat, if you want more than 8GB. I personally ordered a retina model with upgraded RAM. 16GB seemed enough to future proof it until I'm ready for a new notebook again.

    As for games, the retina model sounds nice on paper, but the Nvidia GT 650m card isn't exactly meant to be pumping out 2880x1800 pixels. In a lot of reviews, Diablo 3 is dipping below 20FPS on the retina model. To fix this, you'd have to turn down the resolution to about what the regular 15" MBP uses. So as far as gaming goes, its up to you, since the specs are the same outside of the screens and the retina having a SSD.

    The retina model is also lighter, so it would be less noticeable in your backpack. The screen will also be less reflective than the glossy one on the regular 15" MBP. Unless you opt for the matte option, of course, but those tend to wash out colors so they're not ideal for gaming.

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