buying a macbook tomorrow: i7 dual core vs quad core and ram questions

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Key points/ about me:
Will be used mainly for web browsing, downloading music, watching shows, DVD's(have no tv/cable) and light openoffice work for school (no gaming or video/picture editing software)
Hope to get as many years as possible out of it, my macbook that just died gave me 5 1/2 years
Money is not an issue, I'm willing to make this big investment but do not want to waste money on options that are unneccesary for it to perform up to par three + years from now
These are my questions followed by the four macbook options I am considering:

Will dual core intel i7's processors be obsolete in the near future (3+ years from now)?
If dual core will still be up to par in the future, should I spend the extra $200 now for quad core ? Is quad core necessary for an everyday user like myself?
Should I spend the extra $200 to upgrade my ram from 4gb to 8gb?
Is it worth the extra $500 in the long run to upgrade my ram, go to quadcore, and have a 15 inch screen?

Below are my options with applecare included:

13inch w/ 2.8ghz dualcore i7 4gb ram 750gb harddrive $1748
13inch w/ 2.8gjz dualcore i7 8gb ram 750gb harddrive $1948
15inch w/ 2.2 ghz quadcore i7 4gb ram 500gb harddrive $2148
15inch w/2.2 ghz quadcore i7 8gb ram 500gb harddrive $2348
 
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Does anyone have any advice for me? It really would be greatly appreciated I've been doing intensive research for days and cannot make up my mind
thanks!
Amanda
 

pigoo3

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Will dual core intel i7's processors be obsolete in the near future (3+ years from now)?

EVERYTHING eventually becomes obsolete...the question is when.

If dual core will still be up to par in the future, should I spend the extra $200 now for quad core ? Is quad core necessary for an everyday user like myself?

Probably not.

Should I spend the extra $200 to upgrade my ram from 4gb to 8gb?

No...do it later when (and if) you need 8gig. Apple charges too much for ram. Apple charges $200...you can do it for $50-$60.

Is it worth the extra $500 in the long run to upgrade my ram, go to quadcore, and have a 15 inch screen?

You already asked two of these questions above!!! As to the 15" screen question...totally a personal choice.

Good luck,

- Nick
 
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hi there

Hi there. I'm in the same kinda boat as you. I have the same sort of needs. i've decided on the 13 inch macbook pro because although the extra screen is nice, I need to be very mobile, back and forth to work everyday, upstairs in the home office, down on the sofa, out on the patio. It would never sit in one place so the size is going to be a major factor for me so maybe thats something you should consider. That 15 inch might be nicer if you're gonna wanna play a few games on the thing.

3 years from now you'll no longer have the latest greatest as we all know but my current intel rig, core 2 duo and 3 Gb RAM from a few years ago is still gettin the job done for me so the quad core is really not a big deal for your needs IMO. and definitely shop around for the extra RAM. I've also seen an 8 Gb kit online for maybe 45 bucks now. the extra 200 bucks is just ridiculous.

enjoy your purchase...
 
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Without question, go for the

quad core. I would always advise getting the fastest processor available. The memory you can add yourself later if you need/decide to. Screen size - get the 15", your eyes will very much appreciate it. The 17" is a little big and heavy to lug about regularly but the 15" is fine, you will thank yourself for not getting the 13".
 

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