Why don't they make a MacBook 15inch non-pro?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by stevento, Oct 25, 2010.

  1. stevento macrumors 6502


    Dec 10, 2006
    Los Angeles
    Doesn't this seem like a no brainer for people who want a bigger screen but don't need the extra "pro" cabailities (whatever they may be). The cheapest 15in you can get is $1800 ($1700 if you have a student discount).
    They could take the macbook - the same one that currently costs $999 and put it in a 15 in unibody casing and maybe it'd cost about $1200.
    Why don't they do this? I wish they would. I'd buy that.
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Apple decides what the consumer wants, not the consumer. Sorry :-\
  3. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    Apple doesn't feel they need to do cheap. They are making more money than ever in their history. They just had the most successful product launch in the history of electronics (iPad). Apple is increasing revenue and market share at a time when the rest of the computer industry is either contracting or flatlining. Do you really think they are terribly open to suggestion right now?

    I suggest you consider a used 15 inch MBP if you feel you really must have a larger screen on a Mac notebook. Of course you also have the option of bottom feeding a win 7 box over at dell or hp. There's a reason they can't charge as much for that stuff and it has nothing to do with kool aid or brainwashing. Just so you know, I have a brand new work-issued Dell Latitude E6400 with 3.5 gig of RAM that is a piece of horse manure next to my almost 3 year old white plastic Macbook with its "mere" 2 gig of ram.

    Apple can charge more because their software is better than windows. Here is an exercise you can do to reveal the ugly DOS underpinnings on that shiny win 7 box. Open My Computer, pick the C drive and pick disk cleanup. I hope you brought a lunch. It will sit there and churn for half an hour whether you have 1 gig free or 319 gig free. A Unix based OS supports cleaning out logs and temp files with CRON jobs. This is something that is enabled by default in Darwin, hence no need for a "disk cleanup" of MacintoshHD. Windows could do the same thing with AT jobs but Microsoft is still hitting the snooze bar when it comes to computers that can wipe their own noses.

    Apple can charge more because their hardware quality is (generally) better. Yes there are a handful of high end Lenovo machines that can run circles around Macbooks but they cost more and you are still dealing with with Windows 7. Before you decide, let me ask you one question that Windows is bound to ask you a quarter of a billion times again, Are you sure? The one and only time I have had to answer are you sure in 4+ years of ownership of 5+ Macs was for a wipe and install of OS X on my daughter's Mac Mini.

    So go ahead and complain about Apple prices and lament the stupidity of not selling stuff you like at a price you think is fair. Aint nobody gonna listen until Apple's money well runs dry. And with every Apple quarter setting all time sales records, and Apple market cap having whooshed past Microsoft and even WalMart and nipping at the heels of Exxon, the well shows no signs of running dry any time soon.

    Nice thought though. I agree with you. I wish this stuff didn't cost so darn much. But I still dig out my wallet and send Mr. Jobs a fat check when I want new gear. And after 8+ hours of hourglassing in front of that awful Dell at the office, I come home to a "just works" experience every day and don't begrudge one penny I paid extra for my Apple gear.
  4. shadowbird423 macrumors 6502


    Sep 8, 2009
    Chapel Hill
    I remember reading that someone bought a prototype MacBook that was aluminum (2007). Ill find the article..
  5. Vantage Point macrumors 65816

    Mar 1, 2010
    New Jersey
    Exactly. Apple also decides that bigger laptop screens should have more power. So you can't get a 17" with a light CPU or a 13" with a faster CPU w/graphics chips. Or a non-glossy model or anything under 15" and then only with hig-rez. Apple decides what the consumer wants - and it can be a bit aggravating.
  6. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

    Jul 5, 2008
    Thule GL @ the TOW
    ...and people happily pay, look at apple's cash reserves!
  7. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    They used to make a 14" iBook that sold for a $300 premium over the 12". Apparently it wasn't that popular.

    The MacBook exists as an entry level Mac Notebook, particularly aimed at the educational market. If you want a larger screen, or anything else for that matter, you need to buy the Pro.
  8. rusty2192 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2008
    Do you mean a 15" aluminum MacBook prototype? There was an aluminum 13" MacBook in late 2008.
  9. urkel macrumors 68030

    Nov 3, 2008
    They make a 13" Macbook that runs an outdated 2009 processor with integrated graphics and call it a Macbook "PRO". So clearly Apple changed it's standards on what's "Pro" and what isn't. And somehow being aluminum is enough nowadays.

    It simply looks like Pro machines are based more on aesthetics than power.
  10. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    A few posts back, I defended the value of Apple products but I must agree the selection is limited. There is an up side. Reduced complexity means lower cost. If Apple offered more models, ultimately they wouldn't make as much profit. At this point, they just about have a license to print money so I understand people asking for more choices.

    I suspect what will happen instead is all Apple gear will slowly move down in price but still remain at the high end overall. I think the white Macbook is a dead duck. Who would buy it with an MBA sitting next to it at the same price? Well I suppose somebody who wanted more storage but couldn't afford $1600 for the 256 gig flash based model or a MBP. But I think Apple will thin the herd and the white Macbook will be a goner. Now that the MBA line has taken a bit of a price slide, I expect the Pros to follow suit in 1Q 2011. You still might be able to snag a 15 in MBP for $1400 instead of $1600. Lower than today but still at the high end.

    Look at what Apple did on the 13 in MBP. They eliminated separate audio inputs and outputs. I'm sitting here typing on an old White Macbook. I have a headphone jack and a microphone jack. I can record and monitor what I'm recording on headphones if I like. If I "upgrade" to the new 13 in unibody MBP, I lose one of those ports. Apple took away firewire too. It's not available on the new MBA machines and you will probably have to buy a MBP to get FW from now on. As a person who likes to have choices, this stings a bit. Especially all these friggin' glossy screens. Are-You-Freakin-Kidding I gotta go spend $250 with a third party to get a non-glossy MBA option? Luckily, Apple isn't stone stupid. I expect them to address some of these issues over time.

    My needs are somewhat flexible. I used to obsess about 3D framerate and the like. Now the darn thing is just a tool and the only games I play are on my iPad and iPhone. I will pick the Apple gear that best fits when I upgrade my aging WhiteBook some time in the next 6 months. I won't be that happy with the selection, but I'll find a way to live with what I can get. I won't decide until the next crop of Macbook Pros and the next iPad come out. I will then pick from either a MBA that just came out, the new 2011 MBP that comes out or choose to wait a little longer. One advantage of Apple gear is waiting isn't that painful. My WhiteBook can get me through another two years or more if I really want it to. I could resuscitate the thing right now with a 2.5 inch hard drive upgrade (I only have 15 gig or so free).
  11. shadowbird423 macrumors 6502


    Sep 8, 2009
    Chapel Hill
    Thats the one I was referencing. I just cant find any links. :(
  12. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    There are several Intel PowerBook prototypes floating around:

    Then there is the Unibody Aluminium MacBook, released in 10/2008, discontinued in 6/2009, or upgraded to MacBook Pro status in 6/2009.

    It looks like the 2009/2010 13" MBP, but without a Firewire 800 port, SD card slot and with two audio ports.
  13. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    I'm typing on an 13" Aluminum MacBook right now, from 2008. Not a prototype, since they sold them as a regular item for about 6-7 months.

    Don't recall seeing any 15" MacBook's (non-aluminum), prototype or even rumored. Never really been Apple's style to sell a larger but not as powerful version. Power increases with size on their laptops. Even when they had two sizes of iBook's, they had the PowerBooks start larger, except for the 12" PB, which was almost the equivalent of the MBA for it's time.

  14. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    I think that would be a great idea. :)

    They used to have 14" iBooks

    I normally hate the design of older Macs, but that one isn't half bad. ;)
  15. lordmac macrumors regular

    Feb 15, 2004
    Santa Cruz, CA
    There was a brief period (I believe it was during the brief period when they were selling the unibody aluminum style macbook). Where apple was selling a 15" macbook pro branded model that had pretty much the exact specs of the macbook at the time (it only had integrated nvidia 9400m and not the dual 9400/9600 the higher end 15 inch models had). I want to say it was sold at 1599 but I could be remembering it wrong. If you ask me though if you don't need the extra power of the 15" models just get a 13" mbp or macbook and then use some of the money you are saving from not getting a 15" to buy a decent external monitor. That way you have the portability of the 13'' form factor and the extra screen real-estate when you need it at home. It's what I do, works great.
  16. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    it would be such a nice thing if Apple would care for people who live on a lower budget and offer them at least something that has a bit performance ,
    not everybody is lucky enough to have a 100000 dollar a year job or parents who give them several grand per month pocket money
    i know steve thats sounds unbelievable , but there really are people out there who really earn far less then that and are lucky if they can safe up for a used 4 year old Mac, because they need their money to keep their car who brings them to work on the road , to bring food for the kids on the table , and yes these people pay even rent for the roof over their heads !! dont these people have a right to have something nice on their desks that runs OSX or are they doomed to buy windows pc's

    so why not bring back the iBook 14 inch , no glossy display needed , now with a core duo processor , most have no need for a battery that lasts 10 hours , but they want to enjoy OSX and they want a Apple computer on a budget they can afford
  17. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    It isn't that they don't care. It's about survival. The last time Apple dabbled in the low end and even allowed clones... well we all know that didn't turn out so well. Since Apple gear holds up well, refurbs and used Macs are a viable choice for people on a budget.

    I think Apple's answer to your question is to either go with the $700 Mac Mini or the $999 white Macbook (while they still offer it). In fact they might even say the iPad could be positioned as an entry level "computer", especially after iOS 4.2 brings proper multitasking and printing to the iPad. $500 + bt keyboard (if you gotta have one) ain't bad for an entry level "computer". BTW, did you know you can use a usb keyboard with the iPad using the $30 camera connection kit? (sorry no mouse. yet)

    Starting with Lion, OS X is gonna start using iOS multitasking for newer apps that support it. I expect 10.7 to run fantastic on older (Intel) hardware if you run a lot of apps that are designed to take advantage of the lower demand iOS style multitasking is expected to place on system resources.

    I think Apple's answer to your ibook 14 in suggestion is the white Macbook. Heck, if they keep the white Macbook around, maybe we'll see a price drop in the winter now that MBA entry point is $999. I do think Apple wants to sell at the low end. They just don't want to cannibalize their highly successful sales at the high end. That's why they made the iPad so limited. It's low end but it's firewalled off from "real" OS X. For now.
  18. barkmonster macrumors 68020


    Dec 3, 2001
    I agree with you on that point.

    My first Mac was an ex-demo Powermac G3 desktop, bought right after the blue & white G3s came out, this cost me nearly £1,400 including the monitor.

    The G4 was bought for £380 on eBay in 2005.

    Because Apple no longer cater for the home/hobby market unless you want a laptop or laptop for your desk, with or without a built in screen, my only option for a future Mac that I stand any chance of affording ever, is to spend 3 times the value of a bare hard drive on an external firewire model with the expensive Oxford chipset needed for audio work and well over £600 (or maybe £450 or so used) on a Mac Mini because offering a Mini-Tower to fill the void between the Mac Mini and the Mac Pro is something Apple feel they can do with an All-in-One.

    Their high-end laptops are amazing but for the ordinary consumer, no mini-tower or 15" Macbook in the £1,099 or less range is seriously annoying :mad:
  19. bmustaf macrumors regular

    Jul 6, 2007
    Telluride, CO
    +1 and well said by the writer of the response below.

    Also, I think Apple knows that people who want a 15" display will also want to do things with it that require a better video/graphics subsystem. That's one of the main differences between the MB and the MBP...so, they don't make a 15" MB because most people would be pretty unhappy that they can't run their shiny new 15" display at higher resolutions or with the kind of graphics performance they want for the applications/needs that drove them to 15" to begin with.


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