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  1. #1


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    85
    Talking Some advice please :)
    Hi guys, I've just spent quite a bit of time reading all the boards and threads relating to my own questions, but I feel that I've now taken onboard such a wealth of information that I feel a little lost. If anyone fancies taking the time to reply to this, I'd really appreciate it!

    I'm 23 and I've been using a PC forever. I've decided to go Mac and the lovely, lovely white Macbook will be my choice. I've researched everything I can find because I want to buy a machine that I can use for as long as possible, I don't want to be left wishing I'd bought different (read: better) specs after just a month.

    However, I'm torn between opting the extra cash for the 2gig RAM. As I said, I want this baby to last and it'll be a bit of self-loving too, to treat myself to a top of the range machine, however I don't want to spend a lot of money for the sake of it and find it doesn't make much difference? But I'm a bit of a lazy multitasker, with a lot of browser windows open, iTunes, documents, a game of Minesweeper etc. so would the 2gig RAM be better?

    So, what will I be using the Macbook for? iTunes, archiving digital photographs (I'm a bigtime digicam fan but not excessively so. I'll just be using simple photoshop to resize, contrast, sharpen), internet mostly, some work with documents. I did sort of want to replace my Sims 2 games with MAC versions, I'm not sure yet though. I'm not a gamer at all but it's a game I like to waste a few hours here and there with. Don't know how well it would run on the Macbook as I've read about the integrated cards not displaying games well and I don't fancy paying for the MBP just so I can play Sims 2 :-) I'd rather just sell my games and not play it again, it's not that precious to me!

    I can't really wait until October for Leopard as my current computer is on it's last legs. I don't think it would cost much to upgrade later if I wanted to anyway, am I right? I don't think we're talking Vista prices here, lol. Still. I'd like a good spec Macbook that will last me a good few years and maybe even longer, with specs that won't deprecate too quickly. Which is why I'd quite like to get the 2.0ghz and 2 gigs of RAM.

    I'm not really too keen on opening up my machine and buying RAM from other sites. I've read that it's cheaper to go low and upgrade later, but it's not for me. So the RAM and processor I choose, I'll be stuck with it foreveeeer.

    I don't want to mess up my purchase and regret something later but I don't have oodles of cash either, so I don't want to buy equipment that is surplus to what would already be more than enough for my requirements. I'm going with the 80 gig hard drive because despite being an iTunes fan, I don't really have much more than about 15 gig on my iPod. I tend to delete music I'm not listening to at the time so my iPod isn't packed with 1,000's of songs I don't listen to anymore. I'm not really a hard-drive hungry sort of user. But does the 2ghz of RAM only really pay off with say, the 160gb hard drive? Do I need to upgrade in proportion with each feature or can I just do one or the other?

    Is the 2gig RAM worth it? Any noticable improvement over the 1gig RAM that would shine through especially with any of the software I'll mainly be using? (what I mean is, if the 2gig RAM only really improves performance of say, Office software or video editting or graphic design, then I probably won't really need it as I won't be using any of those things).

    Sorry this is long! Thanks in advance to anyone who replies!

  2. #2

    Kash's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 03, 2006
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    9,385
    Specs:
    Black Macbook C2D 2GHz 3GB RAM 250GB HD iPhone 4 iPad 3G
    Since your requirements are rather basic, it would seem as though 1GB will be just fine. However, since you plan on keeping this machine for a while and have some odd aversion to upgrading it yourself, it would seem as though getting 2GB would be a "smart" decision as you would be future-proofing your machine for the next couple of years.

    However, I really don't understand why you wouldn't want to get 1GB and then have the option of upgrading to 2GB later. That way you can get a feel for the machine and then decide whether you need the extra GB of RAM. It's very simple - took me 5 minutes at most and many others who were initially hesitant had no problems whatsoever. Also, the bigger issue is that it is MUCH cheaper to upgrade on your own than to get Apple to do it for you, especially since memory prices have been dropping recently.

    I personally think you should really reconsider your aversion to upgrading. But if you can't, then I would suggest getting the Macbook with 2GB.

    June 2007
    July 2009

  3. #3


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    85
    I'm hesitant because I can't really afford the AppleCare option, so opening my box would void my warranty, wouldn't it? I mean, I am actually lol, an I.T Consultant, I could probably do it but I'm new to Macs and hesitant about damaging a brand new lappie! It does make sense to see how the 1gig RAM works for me before plugging another few hundred for the extra, though.

  4. #4

    Kash's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 03, 2006
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    9,385
    Specs:
    Black Macbook C2D 2GHz 3GB RAM 250GB HD iPhone 4 iPad 3G
    Upgrading the RAM on your Macbook won't void your warranty. And if you're really worried about it, you could always wait a year and then upgrade

    June 2007
    July 2009

  5. #5


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    85
    ^ Good point, lol. I've always been under the impression that laptops are difficult, if not impossible to upgrade. Or at the very least more expensive to do so. I guess I just need to get over my fear of getting my hands dirty and breaking everything. I'm kinda clumsy by nature

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Member Since
    Dec 03, 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    709
    Specs:
    iMac 2.93C2D 4GB
    Upgrading the RAM really is this simple - CLICK.

    And the same goes for replacing the HD.

  7. #7


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    85
    Oh thank you! wow, that is simple, I feel sort of silly now haha. Does it matter what make of RAM I use, if I decide I need more later? Apple don't seem to have a parts shop like Dell does.

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Member Since
    Dec 03, 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    709
    Specs:
    iMac 2.93C2D 4GB
    No the brand doesn't matter. And don't feel silly, how were you to know and that's what we're here for.

  9. #9


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    5
    HD Compatability
    Talking about replacing a HD, Do the Hard drives from the Powerbook G4's (1.5 ghz specifically) work with the macbooks?

  10. #10


    Member Since
    Oct 27, 2005
    Posts
    4,702
    AFAIK, the PowerBook G4's (1.5Ghz specifically) have 2.5" IDE HDs, whereas the MacBooks have then more ( up-to-date ) 2.5" SATA 5400rpm HDs.

  11. #11

    jram's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 08, 2005
    Posts
    472
    Not getting Apple care with any Mac laptop is like playing russian roulette. They have issues.

  12. #12


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    85
    Thanks guys

    And yeah I know it's a game of russian roulette, especially for something like a laptop. But then it's the argument of BUT if nothing goes wrong, it was all a waste of money. And it's just extra expense I can't really afford, and yeah if it goes wrong I'll have to pay more but it MIGHT NOT go wrong lol. I don't know, I'll have to think about that a bit more.

    Without sounding like a complete lameass (not possible in this instance), does anyone know if I'd have problems playing Sims 2 on a Macbook? It's not exactly as graphics intensive as WoW but will the integrated graphics card hold up? As I said, I'm not that bothered, would just be nice to know whether to bother selling off my PC versions and getting MAC versions to play.

  13. #13

    narf1899's Avatar
    Member Since
    Feb 05, 2007
    Posts
    465
    Specs:
    iMac 20" C2D 2.4 ghz 2gb iMac 20" C2D 2GB 256MB Graphics Macbook C2D 2GB Powermac G4 Dual 450
    i would go with the 2gb of ram...because when you get the 1gb, u get 2 512 sticks, so you would have to buy another 2 gigs of ram and throw out the 512 sticks...
    as for the games, the IMA 950 or w/e is nottt a great graphics card...so ur fps might be pretty low, but still playable.
    iMac Aluminum 20" 2.4 ghz 2gb RAM 300gb HD
    iMac 20" Core2duo 2gb 250gb
    Macbook White Core2duo 2gb 80gb
    Powermac G4 dual 450

  14. #14

    walkerj's Avatar
    Member Since
    Feb 13, 2005
    Location
    New Orleans, LA, USA
    Posts
    1,186
    Specs:
    13" Macbook Pro 2.26Ghz Unibody 4G RAM 160G HDD Superdrive
    Quote Originally Posted by moss918 View Post
    Upgrading the RAM really is this simple - CLICK.

    And the same goes for replacing the HD.
    The difficulty of upgrading reputation probably came from the old iBooks notoriety of being difficult to upgrade anything. Heck, my old Mac Mini took some trepidation to get the case open so I could upgrade the 256MB it came with to 512.

    1 Gig is a sweet spot for the Mac. More is good, but I haven't seen any issues with my Macbook and it's 'only' one gig of RAM. My main issue is the 80 gig HDD which only has 10 gig free at the moment. I have an external 250 gig firewire drive where I keep lots of big stuff (movies, audio, etc.) but I'm going to be wanting to upgrade to a 120 gig internal drive before I'll be adding (or replacing) the memory to get 2 gig. My iTunes collection (currently at 22 gig) seems to be ....growing, and that's something I like to tote around with me wherever I go and not necessarily just on the iPod.

  15. #15


    Member Since
    May 09, 2007
    Posts
    85
    Thank you so much for all your input, guys. A few more questions

    From what I've read across the boards, I've now learnt that I don't have to buy AppleCare the same time as I buy my Macbook. Fantastic! I'll save for a few months and then definitely purchase it, I don't know why I assumed I had to buy it when I got my computer so that's great, I'll definitely do that.

    In terms of a few debates about using the Macbook on your lap, I know it shouldn't because of a heat sink or whatever it is, but is it only to keep your notebook on a level surface and cool? Because I tend to sit with notebooks on my lap, with a gap between my legs so really only the ends of the notebook are on my legs and there's a gap underneath it. Is that bad? I might buy a lap table though, sounds like a good plan.

    Another thing, do I need to buy an Apple mouse? Or can I use my current Logitech? I love it, it's not wireless or anything just connects via USB. I know I'm going to have lots to get used to with a Mac, I can't wait but I just wondered how it works. Does right click do anything?

    And I might keep a second monitor on my desk for when I'm working at it, as an extra display. Can it be any brand? I have a lovely Dell flatscreen that's 5 years old and I would like to use instead of selling it, really. Do I need an Apple monitor for it to work? I just can't see that a Macbook has the right port; this dell monitor has one of those quite thick blue serial port things, with a little screwy thing on each end to hold it in place.

    -Donna.

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