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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

Not sure which MacbookPro to buy...


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dloeffler

 
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I hate asking questions that are like, framed around what should I buy, however, I'm a Mac noob and feel like someone can give me some guidance, so I don't buy more than I need.

The basics, I'm starting college in the fall, and I need a new laptop. I thought, ay, Mac would be nice, but I'm tore as to which to buy. I liked the Macbook at first, but then again, I preferred the MacbookPro after comparing the two (I like the MBP's body material, blacklight keyboard, etc)....so I've decided let's go with the MBP, 13" standard (lower priced one), with no additions, EXCEPT for Microsoft Office for Macs, and maybe the Apple Care...that comes out to $1,431.95, which includes my discount...might I add that I was shooting for the $1,250 range, so +$1,400 is a little high :/

Would I be making the right choice, or should I go for the higher up MPB 13"....like I said I'm just going into college, I am NOT a gamer, but I do a ton of work with documents...what makes me apprehensive is speed and space....I could be worrying about nothing....it's just I'm not tech savvy, especially with Macs...

Thanks in advance guys! (sorry for the which is right for me lol)
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6string

 
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Other than what you have pointed out... the MBP also has firewire, and individual in/out audio ports, as well as an SD card slot.
These features alone, yet alone the aluminium body and backlit keyboard make it a no brainer to me.
The older Macbooks had the firewire and individual audio ports, so then it would have been a harder decision for the extra money, but now without these ports in the new MB, it has made the extra expence for the MBP worth the stretch IMHO.
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SweetCosmicPope

 
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Not really enough info to know what computer would be right for you. If you are only going to be making text documents and research and such, then the low-end mbp or the white macbook will be perfect for you.

If you'll be doing any kind of graphic design courses or video editing, then I would suggest the mbp and upping the RAM and HD (either through apple, or doing it yourself). If you were doing that, though, I'd even recommend bumping to the 15 if you could afford it.

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Oneironaut

 
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You could save money by downloading OpenOffice for free, which will handle Word documents.
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SpinningCompass
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I started college six weeks ago. I bought an MBP (13" screen) the week before. It performed admirably throughout my first module. I was initially worried that the 13" screen might be too small, but it worked out OK.

In your shoes, I would choose the MBP instead of MacBook because of the aluminum body. As for software, I love iWork, but YMMV.
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dloeffler

 
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Thanks of the input guys

It's hard making a decision because everyone, and that includes all the different reviews I read on the computer, has a different opinion.

I really like the MPB, so I think I'm going to do that but I'm tore between the lesser 13" and the greater 13"....and if I should get iWork or MicroOffice....

I keep reading the iWork almost never has compatibility issues, and it's more user friendly, but then I read that I should just go with what the norm is (which would be Microsoft...)...


Any ideas on AppleCare?
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6string

 
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I think Apple care is a must....... but you have until just before the warranty runs out to buy it, so it's not an immediate outlay at least
I have iWork, NeoOffice and Microsoft Word, and even though I use Office (just out of habit), I have found no problems using Pages in iWork with compatibility.
As for the higher or low end MBP... Other than all of the above, I'd be going for the best I could afford to be honest, but then again, if you're not waiting for the next line of Macs to come out, I'd be going for a refurb from Apple and getting more bang for my buck
As for the seperate audio in/out, I have to extract what I mentioned above, as it's not until the 15' that you get the seperate audio input/outputs.
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EndlessMac

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dloeffler View Post
I really like the MPB, so I think I'm going to do that but I'm tore between the lesser 13" and the greater 13"....and if I should get iWork or MicroOffice....
If you have a budget then your decision is most likely made up for you. If you mostly do word processing, internet, and emails then you probably won't benefit too much from the faster 13". The faster 13" is meant for people who want the performance but in a smaller size. It's still not fast enough for some but a high performance compact laptop has been requested by a fairly large group. If you list the software you use most often then we can get a good idea if the low end 13" is fast enough for you.

As for the word processor software choice, do you exchange files with other Microsoft Office users a lot and are they complex files or just simple text documents? The reason I ask is because there are less compatibility issues if they are simple documents and if you don't exchange much Microsoft Office documents with other people then there isn't much of a need to get Microsoft Office Mac version.

Back when I was in college, most of the time I just printed out all my documents to turn into the teacher so it didn't matter what I used. Also any digital files they did give me or I had to turn in were usually simple documents such as text so there weren't many issues especially if the teachers were good about using universal file formats like RTF, etc. If you are going into a more specialized major such as engineering then you will have to use their specific software. If you are doing mostly essays then I don't think you will have much compatibility issues.
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dloeffler

 
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Quote:
I think Apple care is a must....... but you have until just before the warranty runs out to buy it, so it's not an immediate outlay at least
I didn't know that...awesome!

Quote:
Other than all of the above, I'd be going for the best I could afford to be honest, but then again, if you're not waiting for the next line of Macs to come out, I'd be going for a refurb from Apple and getting more bang for my buck
I read somewhere that there's "rumors" new MPBs are coming out? What are the chances that would be soon, I mean it's Apple, so I'm sure we will be surprised..

Quote:
If you list the software you use most often then we can get a good idea if the low end 13" is fast enough for you.
Right now on my PC, I use Firefox, Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel the most. Other than that I can't think of anything else. I usually just spend my time surfing the net, and doing reports, essays, research, excel spreadsheets, and powerpoints...lol
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SweetCosmicPope

 
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If that's all you're going to use it for (consider the future, too, btw), then I would suggest the lower end MBP. You're not going to use alot of resources for that.

You can always up the ram yourself, anyway. You really wouldn't notice a huge difference in the two processors.

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Cycledoc22

 
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You might wait a while as MBP is due for a revamping. At a minimum the older models will be cheaper and the newer ones faster.
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alexsd123

 
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Chances are that the 13" MBP will not be that effected if there is an update, the 15 and 17 inch models are likely to have the bigger change.

I would opt for the low end MBP. You may also want to look into iWork as an alternative to MS Office.

I personally never get the extended warranty on anything. If your Mac poops out on you after the year is up, you can fix it yourself (hard drive/RAM issue) or you can sell it (motherboard, CPU).

The 300 dollars or so is a third/fourth of what you payed for your computer, which is somewhat ridiculous in my opinion. Imagine buying a car and having to pay 20,000 dollars on a warranty for a car worth 60,000, not going to happen.
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6string

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexsd123 View Post
Chances are that the 13" MBP will not be that effected if there is an update, the 15 and 17 inch models are likely to have the bigger change.

I would opt for the low end MBP. You may also want to look into iWork as an alternative to MS Office.

I personally never get the extended warranty on anything. If your Mac poops out on you after the year is up, you can fix it yourself (hard drive/RAM issue) or you can sell it (motherboard, CPU).

The 300 dollars or so is a third/fourth of what you payed for your computer, which is somewhat ridiculous in my opinion. Imagine buying a car and having to pay 20,000 dollars on a warranty for a car worth 60,000, not going to happen.
Imagine if the logic board dies just after the 12 mths.... $600-$700 upwards for replacement.
Screen.....$200-$300 upwards for replacement.
Relatively new car's engines don't just suddenly pack up and die, and therefor, don't require a repair equivelent to more than half of the value of the car!
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osxx

 
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I am with 6string on this it will pay for itself almost 2fold should one of the major components fail not to mention 3 years of phone support.
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blackmac11

 
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I highly suggest you wait. The new models should be out within a few weeks of the iPad launch, so not much longer to wait.

I am also getting a MBP for school in the fall, so it makes sense to hold off for a little while and get right up to speed with the newest technologies. If you bought the current model now, I think you would regret not waiting.


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