General Question

ohmyfluther's avatar

Apple MacBook Pro or Apple MacBook?

Asked by ohmyfluther (9points) August 18th, 2008

Should I spend more money and invest in a new product. Or spend less money but have more leftover??? But I am definitely making it a refurb because Apple’s prices are sky high.

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30 Answers

crunchaweezy's avatar

Once again, what are you going to be using it for?

Surf web, listen to music – Macbook is your best choice
Run lots of apps, manage lots of data, 1080p – Macbook Pro is your best choice

RandomMrdan's avatar

it definitely depends on what you plan to use it for. There is nothing wrong with either notebook, but you could be putting some of the power to waste with a Pro if you only use simple tasks.

tabbycat's avatar

I chose the Macbook Pro myself, but I use it for quite a lot of applications, and I access it about every night at home. I appreciate the bigger screen.

However, it is heavy to travel with. When I’m on the road, I wish I had a Macbook Air.

wilhel1812's avatar

i use macbook, it works fine and i use photoshop, illustrator, dreamweaver and a lot of browsers, ie windows and other stuff often at the same time. however it gets slow sometimes, so if you use it a lot, get a MacBook Pro.

Oh and, the prices are not sky high. If you compare performance with a windows PC with the same specs, the PC wont have a chance.

StellarAirman's avatar

As others have said, it depends on what you’re going to use it for. The biggest things to consider are screen size, processor speed and video card in my opinion. The other stuff like the light up keyboard and things like that are bonuses, but in the long run you’re going to notice the other things a lot more.

If you use professional applications like Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Final Cut Pro, etc then the MacBook Pro is really the only option.

If you play games AT ALL then the MacBook Pro will really be the only option. The integrated graphics card in the MacBook is very weak and will not run many games well at all.

If you’re just emailing, browsing the web, listening to music, etc then the MacBook will be fine.

I wouldn’t worry about RAM or hard drive much. You can upgrade both machines to a good amount of RAM and you can always add extra hard drives externally through firewire or USB.

As for the Mac prices being sky high, I’ll just point you here.

mirza's avatar

I would say go for the macbook. If you want performance, just max out the processor and the memory (don’t get it from apple though). And yes mac prices are sky high. Also for the price difference, you could get an additional 20inch lcd monitor for about 200 bucks for home usage

@Apple Fanboys: I got a Macbook and I still think its overpriced. Seriously I was trying to boast about how my Macbook is better to a friend and she countered me with the fact that she got 3gbs of ram (which she maxed to 4gb for an additional 20 bucks) and a 250gb hard drive with a 2.1ghz processor for less then $ 650. And then we played the boot up game and she beat me on vista just cause her computer was way more powerful then mine

ohmyfluther's avatar

Well I am going to run a lot applications at once because I like to multi-task. And is going to browse the web, send e-mails, social nerworking, play games, and I would definitely want the 15 inch screen though. So I am leaning towards Pro.

crunchaweezy's avatar

Good choice, gaming right there is your deal maker.

do_re_mi's avatar

for gaming you should go for the macbook pro. no question there. That is unless you’re also considering a non apple notebook.

What do people here think of the macbook pro? Any heat related problems?
Also, I found out on this site:
in the last few comments, that apple will bring out a new macbook pro with the latest intel chipsets in “less than a month”!! So might be worth waiting afterall…

aidje's avatar

I have crazy heat problems with my MBP (I often have to take the battery out when I’m plugged in), but it’s a Rev A, so they might have fixed it.

do_re_mi's avatar

Thanks foe the quick reply. I’m hearing a lot of reviews & comments like yours. Other than this the macbook pro would be perfect! Some people are even complaining about battery expansion due to heat. I’m sure I even heard of melting. This worries me because i’m still going to have to buy it as no other laptop can do what I need!

aidje's avatar

I haven’t had any problems with expansion or melting, though I’ve heard many reports of expansion. I don’t think it’s too common, though. As for the more general problem of excessive heat, I’m looking into getting a cooling pad (yes, just now, after having the laptop for almost three years… call me lazy, I guess.). I think that if I find a good one, it should help substantially.

do_re_mi's avatar

You’ve had it nearly 3 years? That’s good enough for me! Sold.

StellarAirman's avatar

@do_re_mi, don’t listen to the rumors of new Apple products coming out. No one knows. They never do. The best guess is just based on product cycles, not rumor. Checkout the guide. You can see when they were last updated and the average time between updates for that model. Everything else is a rumor, and even that guide is only based on averages and may not be correct at all.

I worked at an Apple store for 2 years as a technician and only saw a couple of the expanding batteries. It was a problem with a batch that Sony manufactured. Dell and other laptop makers had similar problems with the batteries from Sony. You have to realize that with the internet, any problem anyone has gets posted around to dozens of sites and thousands of people. Then hysteria spreads and soon “everyone” has the same problem and “all” of product X have the same problem.

The MacBook Pros do however get hot and probably always will. They use the aluminum case of the laptop to help dissipate heat in addition to the vent fans. There is a reason that Apple now refers to their portable computers as notebooks and not laptops. There were some that got too hot, but those were only the ones that were dangerously hot. They will be quite warm even when they are within the normal temperature range.

Tone's avatar

No one knows when new models will come out, but there’s enough chatter lately about an Apple event in September from reputable sources to warrant some reasonable speculation. If you can wait, wait a few weeks and see if they update the notebooks. If you can’t wait, don’t worry about it. Either computer is very good in the current version.

MacBook and MacBook Pro specs are getting very similar. The integrated graphics is one of the few serious differences, and of course the design. My department deals with hundreds of Macs, and for what it’s worth, we’ve had a lot more MacBooks go back for repair than MacBook Pros. Completely anecdotal, of course, but that’s the pattern we’ve seen.

benseven's avatar

I use a Macbook, 1st gen (Core Duo). I’m a graphic designer and use my machine for work, driving a 24” Dell display – and to be honest, I really wish I’d saved up the extra cash and got a Macbook Pro. The Macbook is fine for moderate use but you certainly won’t regret getting a little more bang for your buck.

Save some money buy adding upgrades yourself. I.e buy the base model and buy RAM from other vendors, or even a hard disk. Both of these components can be replaced very easily even by non techy people, I saved a huge amount of money doing it that way (Apple wanted me to pay something like £200 extra for 2GB RAM, I paid around £80 instead ordering and installing myself).

phred78's avatar

I have a 1st gen MBP and frankly, looking at the latest MB specs, it is worth getting it instead of the MBP. For the price difference you can get yourself a nice LCD screen for your home/work and still have a lightweight powerful laptop. Boost it with 4GB and it’s a good deal. My MBP has been giving me serious battery problems. Replaced it once and now I can only get 45mn with a full charge. And you could fry an egg on it, as it gets really hot. Not so laptop after all. Hmm, and the black MB is just so cool =^.^=

mzgator's avatar

All I know is that I have a black MacBook and love it. It’s my first Apple computer. My husband bought it for me fir Mothers Day, and I love it. He bought one for himself. I honestly think he doesn’t like it very much.

benseven's avatar

I should point out that I would also recommend waiting to see what the announcements are during September / early October as a lot of sources are indicating there will be refreshes to these product lines.

do_re_mi's avatar

Ok so problems aside, i’m not sure if the new ones in a month will address the heat and other issues, is the new line going to be a new updated all singing all dancing version of the same mbp or a completely new thing worth waiting for? Any inside tips would be fab.
@Stellar Airman, fair points there, i guess everything gets magnified online. Just one person’s experience isn’t enough, though helpful, sometimes.
I still can’t find another laptop that would be able to do what mbp does. Except old powerbooks that is. That’s why i’m curious about the new ones.

benseven's avatar

I would imagine, as the form factor for the MBP has stayed more or less the same since it was released, that it might be time for a refresh.

The ‘heat’ issues people talk about are of course problematic, but it was noted a while ago that Apple no longer market these computers as ‘laptops’, but instead ‘notebooks’ – supposedly a subtletly that reflects the fact that they run pretty toasty, and apple know that this is not so good for your genitalia.

And in terms of battery life, I expect the battery life of any piece of tech I own to degrade year on year, because manufacturers seem to be far more keen on cramming in another needless feature that sounds great to market with, instead of focusing on battery technologies. That’s something you would expect from many laptops, not just particular lines made by Apple. But if you look at how substantially Apple has pushed the battery life of the iPod Nano – 24 hours by 3rd generation – I’m sure they can push the capabilities power wise for their portable computers as well.

A lot of people seem to be expecting a touch screen macbook at the next product launch. I’m pretty sceptical, but if anyone’s going to do it hand in hand with decent UI then I guess it would be Apple.

phred78's avatar

Everything is “made in Taiwan” these days. I hoped Apple would have kept their products top quality but that’s not the case. I owned a PowerBook before and it was a solid and resistant piece of hardware. And it was truly a laptop.

benseven's avatar

True, but I happily make the compromise of having a faster, more powerful machine and having to keep something between it and my crown jewels!

I think there’s been a drop in quality, but I think that also comes with trying to hit mass market more.

I’ll be jumping to an MBP as soon as I get the chance, and by the time it starts going wonky in a few years there will be a newer, shinier version – that’s how the Apple addiciton works, right? :)

phred78's avatar

Too bad it’s an expensive addiction LOL I’m as guilty as anyone else :P

benseven's avatar

I have three eMacs sitting in my lounge right now,
my old high school was selling them off for £20 with a mouse and keyboard.
Dang, the things are heavy though! About 50 pounds. One of them has been repurposed as a jukebox with Airport Express through the house.

Currently wishing my MB was 2nd Gen so that Wireless N and 4GB Ram would be an option!

ohmyfluther's avatar

Maybe I should just get this haha.

aidje's avatar

I’m actually on the phone with AppleCare right now seeing if they’ll replace my battery. It started at 5500 mAh, now it’s down to 1919mAh. It kept its charge capacity for a long time, and then dropped off really sharply in the past couple of months.

StellarAirman's avatar

@aidje, if you’ve had the battery over a year they won’t help you. The battery is not covered under warranty and ALL batteries will lose their capacity over time. It was very rare that we would replace someone’s battery when I worked at an Apple store. Usually it would have to be an extreme case like only holding a charge for 30 minutes after 6 months of use, or if it was having the swelling problem, etc.

aidje's avatar

I know that’s the official position, but I was told by a former Apple employee that I should try my luck anyway. I wasn’t expecting much; the battery is at 268 load cycles, and it’s 32 months old—and yet the call I just made was successful. A new battery is on its way for a twenty dollar deposit that will be refunded once they get the old battery back.

dreamwolf's avatar

Go MacBookPro.

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