Which MBP would be best in my situation?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Sal Collaziano, Nov 8, 2007.

  1. Sal Collaziano macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #1
    Hi there.. I'm about to switch from Windows to Macintosh.. I design and develop websites - so I use Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Dreamweaver and CuteFTP quite extensively. While I'm working, I usually have ten or so tabs open for various websites - along with my email client downloading email every 10 minutes or so. I may have some text documents open along with some Open Office documents... I think you get the picture - I'm very busy...

    On my Windows machines, with all the antivirus, anti spyware, anti adware, anti malware, firewall - etcetera - I'm moving along very slowly with 2 gigs of memory on a Core 2 Duo Intell PC.

    Here's what I'd like to get:

    2.6GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    4GB 667 DDR2 - 2x2GB SO-DIMMs
    250GB Serial ATA Drive @ 5400 rpm

    Here's what my local Apple store has:

    2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    2GB 667 DDR2 - 2x2GB SO-DIMMs
    150GB Serial ATA Drive @ 5400 rpm

    Will the 2.6 provide a noticable difference over the 2.4?

    I can always buy 4 gigs of memory later. Will I need it right away?

    Is it possible to upgrade the drive to 250 gigs later?

    Thanks in advance...
     
  2. vm7118 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2007
    Location:
    NJ, USA
    #2
    you can buy RAM later, which is recommended actually (opposed to spending more than twice as much at apple... a solid 4gb of crucial can be had for $150 plus shipping online). you will probably be more than fine with 2gb for the time being, even with all your apps.

    as for 2.6 vs 2.4, unless you do heavy video encoding or some other cpu-intensive task, there won't be a NOTICEABLE difference, at least IMHO. i could be wrong though... to tell you the truth, i'm not exactly a punishing photoshop user, although you might be.

    i noticed, however, that you don't list any intensive games either, as well as no video work. maybe you can save some cash and get a new santa rosa macbook instead of the pro? the 2.2 with 4gb of ram and a nice big, fast hdd is really not any slower than the MBP, and only pales in terms of 3d performance.

    the macbook is also a much easier machine to upgrade the hard disk on. both offer easy RAM upgrading that won't void any warranty, but the MBP's hard drive is much harder to get to. it still isn't really a problem however if you are used to working with computers.

    also, you really shouldn't have so many utilities running in XP. spybot/resident and clamwin, with no windows firewall, has gotten me along as long as i can remember with no problems. i may have bought a mac, but i still use XP on and off.
     
  3. xparaparafreakx macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    #3
    Get the ram as aftermarket and get 4GB since you will be doing photoshop.

    Also do you need that extra space or can you go with a 7200RPM hard drive? A nice fast hard drive helps in photoshop unless you already have an external scratch disk.
     
  4. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #4
    Thank you for the reply.. I mainly want the MBP because of the screen size.. I'm not concerned about it being small and/or light. I'm wanting this to possibly replace my desktop PC. So I may just hook-up a monitor, keyboard and mouse and eventually just use this as my desktop.

    When I'm away from home, I'd like to have a good, big screen to view everything comfortably.. I don't have any time for games and don't do any 3D editing of any kind. I use Photoshop lightly (only the simple stuff as I don't really do "graphic design") for things like banner ads and/or website headers.

    More than anything, I'll be using Dreamweaver, browsing web sites and sending/receiving email.

    So it's sounding like I can get away with 2 gigs of ram for the time being. The memory you told me about, 4gb of "crucial" - I have no idea what that is - but more information would be appreciated.. That sounds great! Thank you.

    The 2.4 to 2.6 factor doesn't sound very important 'for me'. And the hard drive.. I guess that's the only thing I'm not sure about.. If I were to want to upgrade - where could I go do have that done without upsetting the warranty? I'm guessing the Apple stores don't do that kind of thing...

    Thank you!
     
  5. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #5
    Thank you for the reply.. I've heard that the 7200RPM hard drive slows down the computer at times.. I'm thinking I'll be okay with the 150gb as long as I have the capability of upgrading later. Then again, since I'll be getting an external hard drive in the near future, I may never need more than 150gb anyway...

    As for Photoshop.. I really do very light work in it.. I only really brought it up because I'll have the application opened a lot...

     
  6. xparaparafreakx macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    #6
    I have a MBP 17" and its great. Being able to do photoshop/indesign/aperture anywhere is great.

    As for the 2.4Ghz and 2.6Ghz, http://barefeats.com/ , should have result on it soon to see if it worth it or not.

    I been getting mix reactions about hard drive upgrades. Most say that doing it yourself does not kill the warranty but others say it does.

    Heres the ram info for 4GBs, http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/53IM2DDR4GBK/

    Crucial is just a brand of ram, they are a really good company to deal with.
     
  7. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #7
    Thank you. I bookmarked that page and will purchase the memory shortly after I purchase my MBP.

    In regards to the hard drive install - I probably won't take that on myself.. But is there a place that does it? For example, the Apple Store? Or CompUSA or something? Or do I have to actually send it out somewhere?

    Thanks again!

     
  8. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
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    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #8
    Any answers available to the hard drive question?
     
  9. Squonk macrumors 65816

    Squonk

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #9
    Word on the street is that the Apple store's do not install hard drives. I'd imagine that any computer store with in-house tech department *could* do it. I'd want to make sure that they are an authorized apple service center so that they don't muck anything up.

    I have replaced the hard drive in my PowerBook and it was not all that bad. Just lot's of screws and attention to detail. There are many sites on the web with DIY guides with photos. Just give a google... :)
     
  10. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #10
    Thank you.. I suppose I'm more worried about the warranty than anything else! :)

     
  11. Squonk macrumors 65816

    Squonk

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #11
    I hear you on that. I'm going to be buying an MBP in Jan/Feb and I'm not sure which route to go on the HD upgrade myself. The money you would save by buying your own drive and paying someone to install it would be a wash for ordering an upgraded drive direct from Apple. That is assuming that you are happy with their drive options.

    There is lots of back and fourth on the issue of voiding the warranty. The most definitive answer is that as long as you don't break anything while you are inside your laptop, it would not void the warranty.

    So...
    :D
     
  12. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
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    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #12
    That's just the thing.. I wouldn't do the hard drive upgrade/install myself.. But is there any service that would? I think somebody already mentioned that a good computer store/repair shop would do it - then again, maybe that would void the warranty. I should just call an Apple store and ask. :p

     
  13. Squonk macrumors 65816

    Squonk

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #13
    I'm sure you have a local computer store who is an Apple Authorized service center - you'd just need to call around or surf or hit the phone book (if you still have one of those). :p

    That is the interesting thing about this, WHO can install a HD without it voiding the warranty? Sure, the dudes at GeekZone (Best Buy) can do computer repair, but if they are not Apple Authorized, would it void the warranty? I don't know the answer to this...
     
  14. MDiddy macrumors regular

    MDiddy

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Location:
    Chicago
    #14
    For what you've described, the 2.2GHz model would perform beautifully. I'd say use the savings on getting more RAM, AppleCare, and a 7200 RPM. Even video-editing tasks aren't going to run fast enough to warrant a 20%-33% price difference. I run the entire Adobe Master Collection on my 2.2GHz with 4GB RAM with multiple apps open, along with Parallels at the same time and I get zero lags.

    With most of the previous models of PowerBook & MacBook Pro, there was an architecture or major feature difference between the low-end & high-end 15" models. No WiFi card, no illuminating keyboard, etc. The only difference now is the video RAM, which will only affect you if you want to play games or run 3D apps.
     
  15. isleofjib macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    CT
    #15
    i agree that the entry MBP should work great for you given your stated goals. the extra money should be spent on extra ram, faster hdd, apple care and an external hdd if you prefer.

    i was told by apple customer support, that if i had applecare, i could buy the hdd and take it to my local store and they would install the drive and transfer my data over for free. never tried to have it done and in my experience with my local store, their customer service sux (i've been told they're the 7th worse store in all of apple in that regards). i say call your local store (if you have one) and ask. if i recall correctly, the ram and hdd are user installable items that don't effect the warranty (assuming you don't muck it up while your doing it).
     
  16. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #16
    Thanks, everyone - for all the great replies and information! I think you've convinced me to get the faster hard drive.. I just hope it's available at the local Apple store (I noticed the 2.6 is not available there yet). I read somewhere that the faster hard drive used more resourced and slowed things down - but none of you seem to be concerned with that, so I won't..

    Thanks again!
     
  17. schreck macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Location:
    New England
    #17
    www.store.apple.com

    Why hasn't anyone recommended this? You can build a computer to your liking through that website, believe it or not! They're shipping in 3-5 days now when BTO.
     
  18. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
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    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #18
    Ok, I just called and found out that the 7200rpm drive is not available in stores.. Oddly enough, the representative told me that the 2.6s will never be available in stores.. Hmm.. Wierd...

    Anyway.. He also said that the 7200rpm drive would only give me a noticable difference if I was working with video editing.. So, I still may just go to my local Apple Store to pick up my MBP...

    At any cost, this discussion has been VERY helpful to me! So thank you all again. :)
     
  19. isleofjib macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    CT
    #19
    i take exception with that advice. a faster hard drive is going to matter any time your accessing the drive. which you'd be a doing a lot if your doing photoshop in any significant way. if your just doing minor editing tho and mostly just doing web design, browsing, email, etc, you prolly wouldn't notice the difference as much. so maybe the money is better spent elsewhere.
     
  20. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    #20
    save money and get the 2.2. then you can upgrade the hard drive (which is recommended since the hard drive isn't user replaceable) and you could also buy 4GB 3rd party ram and put that in there for less than the 2.4.

    2.2 + 250GB 5400hd + 4GB aftermarket ram = $2400

    for the tasks you're doing the 2.4 (or even 2.6) isn't going to be a big difference.
     
  21. Squonk macrumors 65816

    Squonk

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #21
    The 2.6 is a custom order only option and therefore it will never be available in stores.
     
  22. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    Jul 19, 2002
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    キャンプスワ&#
    #22
    Since you mentioned that the MBP would be a desktop replacement, an external FW800 HD might be a great option for you instead of upgrading the internal HD. At least initially. That way you can have a very fast HD with much larger capacity when you at home.
     
  23. skye12 macrumors 65816

    skye12

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, Tx
    #23
    The best MBP now is the MacBook. Since its also got the same speed SR now,
    buy it or wait for the new MBP's due anytime in the next 2 months.

    Buying a MBP now is not worth it.
     
  24. schreck macrumors regular

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    Oct 21, 2007
    Location:
    New England
    #24
    I agree. Though the MB and MBP aren't the same machine due to differences in the graphics/LED screens/cosmetic changes, I'd definitely wait if I were in your shoes. Well, I am in your shoes, and I am waiting. :)
     
  25. Sal Collaziano thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    Royal Palm Beach, FL
    #25
    If the Mac Book came with a 17" screen, I would have been more interested in it..

    Man.. Now you guys have me thinking.. It's just two months (at most?) until these news Mac Book Pros are available.. Maybe I should just be patient for once in my life...
     

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