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Thread: Hello, Questions

  1. #1

    Member Since
    Feb 27, 2007
    Hello, Questions

    I'm brand new to this website, so first I'd like to say Hi, and thanks to anyone who helps out. I've been doing alot of research on the Macbook, and the Macbook Pro's in the past couple of months.

    I'm looking to purchase one of the two for University. I will be studying Engineering, and possibly using a CAD program in the future. I've done my research, and the most widely used CAD program is AutoCAD, and the system requirements to run it are:

    * Intel® processor 3.0 GHz or greater
    * Windows XP Professional (SP2)
    * 2 GB RAM or greater
    * 2 GB of disk space available, not including installation
    * 1280x1024 32-bit color video display adapter (true color)
    * 128 MB or greater, OpenGL®-capable workstation class graphics card.

    (I plan on using BootCamp to have this program work). Now the enhanced of AutoCAD, which brings drawings to a third dimension and apparantly much more, requires:

    * Intel® Pentium® 4, Xeon™, or AMD Athlon™, 2GHz or better processor
    * 3.5+ GB free hard drive space (for installation)
    * 1+ GB RAM
    * 128+ MB DirectX or OpenGL Capable graphics card

    Now, these are all recommended requirements, and I obviously designed to suit better performance.

    Finally, here comes the question. I cannot decide if I would like to purchase the Mid-Level Macbook, or the Entry-Level Macbook Pro.

    I have no doubt in my mind that the Macbook Pro will run these programs flawlessly, I've seen it done. My question is, will the Mid-Level Macbook run these programs at a "good" performance. I've done alot of reading on the Intel GMA 950 Card which runs inside the Macbook. I'm just not sure if it will meet my requirements, if anyone else would like to take a look at what I've read, take the following link:

    Any suggestions or help is appreciated. (PS, I'm not worried about the Macbook having a smaller screen, I'm connecting it to a Cinema Display when I'm working on drawings).

    I've gone to stores like Bestbuy, Futureshop, Compusmart and they all are telling me Macbook Pro, everytime I ask will these programs even run on the Macbook, I get a "I don't know, I've never tried it"

  2. #2

    Member Since
    Nov 19, 2006
    I have a MBP and I use AutoCad but on my PC. It runs fine on 3.0 GHz, 1GB RAM, intergrated video card, no problems whatsoever even in very complex models. The MBP will be fine with AutoCad. I will recommend the MBP because t has more power, bigger screen (better for designs) and most inportantly it has a good video card. I have seen the MBP run AutoCad fine at my university computer store. And besides just look at the MBP it beautiful
    oh I almost forgot try out Blender in my sig! You might like it... Check this site out free Autodesk software CLICKY CLICK

  3. #3

    Member Since
    Feb 27, 2007
    Thanks for the help, although it doesn't completely answer my question.

    Will a Macbook , the one with 1GB of RAM, and the Intel GMA card be enough to run CAD based programs?

  4. #4

    ToddG's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2006
    I don't use AutoCAD, but the system requirements would seem to discount the possibility that the MacBook's integrated video chipset is up to the task.

  5. #5

    Ninjab3ar's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2007
    Miami, FL
    Hi, I'm currently studying architecture at my university and i own a MacBook Pro. I have AutoCAD 2007 installed in windows using boot camp. What I have to say about it is that it runs very well. I also know a couple of people who own MacBooks (the ones with integrated graphics) and can run programs like AutoCAD, Rhino, and 3D Studio Max well.

    If you plan to be using CAD programs and do a little 3D modeling, the Macbook would be fine, but to be safe I would rather go with the Macbook pro, they have dedicated graphics and faster processors.

  6. #6

    bobtomay's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 22, 2006
    Texas, where else?
    Both of the requirement lists you have indicate a minimum 128 MB video ram. This in itself would preclude the MacBook with it's 64 MB shared memory.

    I personally would be very hesitant to buy any piece of hardware for the purpose of running a specific piece of software that is not up to the minimum specs of the software. It may run fine for some tasks, but you are just asking for trouble at some point.

    And if you do have any problems, no matter what the problem, the only support you will get from the software manufacturer is "Sorry, we do not support that video card".
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  7. #7

    traded's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 15, 2006
    Los Angeles
    Just get the macbook and try running it. The people with actual experience with that program seem to think that the macbooks specs will handel the program just fine. Those recommended requirements are probably quite a bit higher than the true minimum requirements. If you find it doesnt work or the screen is just too small for your needs, return it within 2 weeks, at no charge, and get yourself a MBP. Alternatively, why dont you try to convince your schools computer store to let you install the software on a macbook on display.

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