General Question

mvgolden's avatar

What is the advantage of the 15" MacBook Pro over the 13" Macbook?

Asked by mvgolden (821points) November 13th, 2006
Is it only the size of the screen, and shared graphics memory in the macbook vs independant memory macbook pro?
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26 Answers

ben's avatar
Non-glossy screen (some see this as very important), aluminum casing, worse airport reception, FW800, ... I bet there are other advantages too... Anybody?
andrew's avatar
Non-glossy screen. Big deal unless you're a college kid watching movies in your dorm room.
mvgolden's avatar
So the macbooks have better WiFi than the macbook pros?
mvgolden's avatar
is the shared memory a big deal?
b's avatar
A big difference is the on board video. The 13" has a low end graphics processor that shares system memory with video memory. Basically, the Pro models perform better.
b's avatar
The MacBook is still a very powerful machine, and the glossy screen is not bad. For your basic use, it will serve allyour needs just fine.
bob's avatar
The MacBook has better airport reception, yesThe aluminum of the Pro actually interferes with airport reception.
bob's avatar
"airport" means WiFi
bob's avatar
Is the shared graphics memory important? The lack of a separate graphics card makes it difficult to run games on the machine. I don't know if it has other noticable drawbacks.
mccorrado's avatar
There is no advantage justifying the price difference.
blachman's avatar
Mac Book Pro has higher max clock speeds (2.33 vs 2.0). Larger screen sizes 15.4/17 vs 13.3. Larger RAM capacity (3GB vs 2GB). Express Card/34 Slot. Firewire 800.
hoist2k's avatar
nothing worth the huge price difference. stick with the cheaper one
b's avatar
It really depends in what you are using it for. If you are working on professional audio/video, the MB Pro is workth the extra grand. For general internet, workd processing, and home movie stuff, the MacBook is your bet.
joshiewitz's avatar
one is bigger than the other.
benjiwitz's avatar
yeah, not a fan of squinting
joshiewitz's avatar
yeah, go with the bigger one, otherwise get an S-VIDEO Cable and hook it up to a large TV monitor, but then that defeats the purpose of a laptop
bob's avatar
So much different advice. But I think the general differences have been outlined. As for the size thing: personally, I have a 15" Powerbook, and I will be upgrading to the 13" Macbook... but only once I buy an external monitor for home use. That way three things happen: 1) I have a 20" monitor (much nicer than 15" or 13") when I'm at home; 2) I have a smaller computer to lug around to coffee shops; 3) I spend less money overall!
b's avatar
Good choice, I am planning on doing the same.
mvgolden's avatar
Thank you all for the input. I should tell everyone that I currently have a 1st generation aluminum 12" powerbook. It has suited me well. A little beat up after 4 years. I think the MacBook is winning me over.
ben's avatar
If you're thinking about buying, there may be special in-store discounts this Friday only (black friday--or you could boycott Capitalism)
alley's avatar
it's true the differences seem negligable when talking about screen choice, size, and CPU speed, but for many people who work with graphics, or like games, the difference in graphics processing is huge. this is not something you can upgrade so if video processing matters to you for work or gaming better go with the pro. otherwise the macbook is a great deal and a better consumer model than the pro.
samkusnetz's avatar
this is largely good advice, but a couple of key things have been overlooked or under-emphasized.
samkusnetz's avatar
(oops... premature hitting of respond button...) 1. the MBP has a backlit keyboard, which is essential if you work in the dark a lot (i do; i'm a sound designer and stage manager.) 2. MBP has an expresscard slot, which is sometimes the only way to attach certain external hardware. 3. MBP has a firewire 800 port, which is important if you do a lot of data transfer to external disks. 4. the MB
samkusnetz's avatar
damnit! i hit return expecting a new line in the text field, even though it says "pressing enter will send your response" (nevermind that on a mac, enter and return are two different things.) anyway... 4. the MBP has a DVI port for attaching an external monitor, and supports spanning, which means the external monitor is an extension of the built in screen. on the MB, the external monitor connection is analog only, and can only mirror the built in screen.
samkusnetz's avatar
(now i notice that fluther cleverly combines my posts so that i don't look like an idiot from having hit return too much. well done, fluther!)
b's avatar
Actually, the MB has a Mini-DVI port, which supports spanning as well. The old iBooks had only the analog out. To quote the MP Specs from store.apple.com: "Mini-DVI video out with support for DVI, VGA, S-video, and composite video output via adapters (sold separately)"

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