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Need Advice... im driving myself insane!
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kurt.physics
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Oct 29, 2008, 09:06 AM
 
Hey,

I am looking to buy one of the new macbook or macbook pros. Just to give some context, i am 15 years old at school in Australia.

I cannot decide which one to get, i love the prospect of having a macbook pro, but because of all the economics crap they are so god dam expensive ($3200 AU) where as the top range MB is ($2400). I dont come from an extremely rich family and so i only have so much money to spend, i mean i could stretch so much as to get a MBP but i am not sure if it is worth it, i mean, $700 more for just another graphics card and a firewire port. I will just say what i want to do, and then hopefully yous can guide me in the right direction as to what to get.

I want to do a little bit of gaming (nothing really hard core, im not much of a gamer, just spore), i will mostly be using it for school and also watching TV shows i have downloaded. But i want to start doing some Final Cut Pro, Shake and Motion type stuff just to play around, i mean, i might work on a few projects such as short films and stuff like that and i really enjoy it, its just i dont know if the MB can take it. So one of my main questions is Can the Macbook take FCP and Motion work?.

I will probably use this laptop right up until the end of high school, then definitely get a macbook pro for uni.

Another question is, i currently have a imac (aluminum, 2.0Ghz, 1 GB RAM with ATI RadeonHD2400 with 128 VRAM) and i was wondering how the RadeonHD2400 with 128VRAM compares to the MBs Nvidia 9400M integrated graphics card? Is the Nvidia card better?
I want to know this as my current imac seams to work okay with FCP.

Also, if i was to get a macbook it would be the 2.4GHz with all standard except i would upgrade it to 4GB Ram, whereas if i got the MBP it would be the base model with all standard. Which would be better for what i want to do?

I would really appreciate all comments and posts as it would put my insomnia to rest
( Last edited by kurt.physics; Oct 29, 2008 at 09:21 AM. )
     
SpaceMonkey
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Oct 29, 2008, 10:53 AM
 
For video work, the screen size of the MacBook would drive me crazy, performance questions aside. I don't want to sound condescending, but since you seem to basically be working on video as a hobby, I would stick with your iMac for your video projects (maybe max the RAM) and get a MacBook for school. Save your money and get a truly kick*ss "pro" notebook when you go to college.

"One ticket to Washington, please. I have a date with destiny."
     
imitchellg5
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Oct 29, 2008, 11:05 AM
 
The previous MacBook could run Motion and FCP okay, so it'd probably be acceptable. Your iMac would be better than the MacBook for editing especially if you upgraded the RAM.
     
kurt.physics  (op)
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Oct 30, 2008, 05:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
Your iMac would be better than the MacBook for editing especially if you upgraded the RAM.
I know the imac would be better, its just that i need something portable for school.
     
JKT
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Oct 30, 2008, 06:07 AM
 
I would keep an eye on sites like www.barefeats.com to see what speeds the various machines are getting in different software. There are already comparisons up for the MB and MBP in gaming which might give you an idea of how good a MB would be for your needs.
     
JKT
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Oct 30, 2008, 06:08 AM
 
E.g. this one compares the difference between the integrated GPU and the standalone card for gaming in the same MBP:

http://www.barefeats.com/mbpp07.html

The difference is quite significant, but that doesn't mean that the integrated chip is not going to be OK for your needs.
     
applesbiggestfan
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Oct 30, 2008, 08:09 AM
 
Final Cut Pro, Shake, Motion, Gaming.

That pretty much equals to Macbook Pro.

If you are going to do all that stuff + internet browsing and everyday stuff, then the Macbook Pro's speed and graphics should be best for you. Video editing and all that other stuff require a fast processor and a better GPU.

You are going to experience more lag in the Macbook than the Macbook Pro.
And also if you are going to use it until the end of high school you should stick MBP.

Why you should get the Macbook Pro:
- Faster processor (you can multitask and do all the things you listed faster, and the laptop will last longer without becoming obsolete)
- Faster GPU (also good for video editing, and gaming as you said.)
- Faster Hard Drive (good for video editing because you can import and export files faster)
- Bigger screen (good for video editing, gaming, and pretty much everything.

The Macbook Pro is better for what you listed and it will serve you longer than a consumer notebook.
     
Maflynn
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Oct 30, 2008, 12:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by applesbiggestfan View Post
Final Cut Pro, Shake, Motion, Gaming.
That pretty much equals to Macbook Pro.
Not necessarily, I ran some pro apps on the old MB before and it handled it. The MB would be even better at handling it.

You are going to experience more lag in the Macbook than the Macbook Pro.
That's not quite what the benchmarks have shown Except where the GPU comes into play the two computers are nearly identical in performance.

Why you should get the Macbook Pro:
- Faster processor (you can multitask and do all the things you listed faster, and the laptop will last longer without becoming obsolete)
Based on the OP's post, he'll either get the MB or the base MBP, so the processor is identical

- Faster GPU (also good for video editing, and gaming as you said.)
Agreed provided that his applications use that, games aperture etc.

- Faster Hard Drive (good for video editing because you can import and export files faster)
The MB can have the exact same fast drives that the MBP can utilize.

- Bigger screen (good for video editing, gaming, and pretty much everything.
Definitely a plus when working with images but could possibly be a disadvantage when trying to balance a computer a book and other things on a student desk found in schools

My opinion is that the OP could be very happy with the MB provided he wants a small light computer and the less powered GPU won't hamper him or the lack of firewire is an issue.
~Mike
     
applesbiggestfan
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Oct 30, 2008, 02:32 PM
 
The only way the Macbook can have an equally fast hard drive is if you buy it seperately.

And the processor is faster on the Macbook Pro.
Of course if you are only running Safari or iTunes you don't notice any difference.
But if you are running, Safari, iTunes, Final Cut Pro, and Shake then you will notice a difference, the processor is good for multitasking.
     
Maflynn
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Oct 30, 2008, 02:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by applesbiggestfan View Post
The only way the Macbook can have an equally fast hard drive is if you buy it seperately.
Yeah so, many people typically by the stock model and upgrade it themselves. Its generally cheaper alternative then going the CTO route. You have more flexability with returning the computer when purchasing a stock model and a better warranty. Crucial offers a life time warranty on the ram. Apple 1 year (3 with applecare).

And the processor is faster on the Macbook Pro.
a MacBook 2.4GHz is the same speed as a 2.4GHz MBP. The benchmarks being published like in macworld, ars and such bear that out.

Of course if you are only running Safari or iTunes you don't notice any difference.
But if you are running, Safari, iTunes, Final Cut Pro, and Shake then you will notice a difference, the processor is good for multitasking.
The only time you'll see a difference between the computers is when an application relies on the GPU. otherwise results will be identical. They use the same components and chipsets (aside from the GPU). You're only getting a better GPU, FireWire and a larger screen with the MBP. Everything else is equal.
~Mike
     
applesbiggestfan
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Oct 30, 2008, 03:03 PM
 
Maflynn... are you kidding me.

Why the hell would someone buy a 2.4Ghz Macbook Pro???

And of course I'm comparing the Macbook to a 2.53Ghz or 2.8Ghz MBP
     
Maflynn
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Oct 30, 2008, 03:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by applesbiggestfan View Post
Maflynn... are you kidding me.

Why the hell would someone buy a 2.4Ghz Macbook Pro???

And of course I'm comparing the Macbook to a 2.53Ghz or 2.8Ghz MBP
uhmm, a lot of people. Just because you went for a 2.8 means everyone can or wants to go that route.

While you're comparing a 2.4Ghz MB to a 2.8Ghz MBP, the OP in his first post mentioned that he was looking at the base model of the MBP and comparing that against the MB.

Edit: While I purchased the 2.5 I was extremely close to picking up the 2.4 and there's plenty of reasons why the 2.4GHz MBP makes sense. We're not a one size fits all society and people have different needs which means the 2.4 can make more sense for some but not others.
( Last edited by Maflynn; Oct 30, 2008 at 03:24 PM. )
~Mike
     
kurt.physics  (op)
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Oct 31, 2008, 04:38 AM
 
The reason i am considering getting the 2.4GHz macbook pro is because i am not rich and the macbook pros are quite expensive in australia. So i want to know the difference is between a 2.4GHz MB 4GB Ram etc and a 2.4Ghz MBP base? I know its (for me) $435, is this worth it for a bigger screen, another graphics card and a firewire port? Will the MB maxed out be enough for me?
     
GuyWithACamera
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Oct 31, 2008, 06:22 AM
 
Look in the refurb or clearance area of the Apple store for a previous generation 2.5 or 2.6 mackbook pro if you don't need the latest design. That can save you some cash and you get a very capable portable for video, etc.
I have no lid upon my head. But if I did, you
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Spheric Harlot
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Oct 31, 2008, 06:45 AM
 
[QUOTE=sryk;3752161]Hello boy. I just bought the macbook. I think you should purchase this one too. Its good and very easy for use and understand. Im very happy and getting used to my mac.
Thats why im in this forum now.

Edited out link -- OreoCookie
Really?

I somehow suspect the link in both your posts so far may have more to do with why you're here...
( Last edited by OreoCookie; Oct 31, 2008 at 07:11 AM. )
     
applesbiggestfan
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Oct 31, 2008, 02:13 PM
 
The differences between the 2.4Ghz Macbook and 2.4Ghz Macbook Pro are:
- Screen (macbook pro's is bigger)
- Graphics card (macbook pro has awesome graphics)
- Speakers (superb stereo speakers built-in macbook pro)
- Larger L2 Cache in the macbook pros (I dont know exactly what it does but it increases the speed)

The only thing better about the Macbook in any case, is it's size...

You can get a refurbished macbook pro. for cheaper prices
     
JKT
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Oct 31, 2008, 02:49 PM
 
FW800
ExpressCard slot
     
JKT
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Oct 31, 2008, 02:50 PM
 
Would a Firewire port be necessary for you if you are doing film editing, or is USB2 adequate?
     
applesbiggestfan
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Nov 1, 2008, 03:07 AM
 
sorry. forgot about FireWire because I never use it.

but yeah, if you are gonna do video editing u need firewire, probably.

and every computer comes with USB 2.0 ports
     
SierraDragon
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Nov 1, 2008, 10:33 AM
 
More screen real estate and pixels are important for the apps you mention, as is Firewire and/or EC/34. Your described needs are for a MBP. Look for refurbished or student pricing.

-Allen Wicks
     
kurt.physics  (op)
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Nov 1, 2008, 05:40 PM
 
I am the OP, i have pretty much decided on getting the New model MacBook Pro. Will the base 2.4Ghz model be sufficient for me?
     
Simon
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Nov 1, 2008, 11:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by kurt.physics View Post
I am the OP, i have pretty much decided on getting the New model MacBook Pro. Will the base 2.4Ghz model be sufficient for me?
The differences between the 2.4 and 2.5 GHz model (beyond the 100 MHz CPU clock) are 2 GB of RAM, 70 GB of HDD, and 256 MB VRAM. The disk and RAM can both be upgraded for less if you buy from a third-party like Newegg. The only thing you can't change later on should you want to is the VRAM. $500 for the extra VRAM and +4% clock is quite steep. For a professional user it's likely a no-brainer, but from your original post I get the impression you are on a tight budget and mainly interested in casual use of higher-end apps. To me that sounds like the 2.4 GHz model would be more appropriate.
     
Ted L. Nancy
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Nov 2, 2008, 10:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by applesbiggestfan View Post
but yeah, if you are gonna do video editing u need firewire, probably.
Steve disagrees with you. I tend to also.

I think USB 2.0 is sufficient for video editing (hence it being offered on most camcorders), especially for the author of the OP, who seems to only want to dabble with FCP et al. Nonetheless, this FW debate has gone far enough and will be moot sooner than later, as Apple, I suspect, is being forward looking (as usual) and will offer USB 3 in the MB ASAP.

kurt.physics, it sounds like it is too late to convince you to go with the MacBook, but I'm sure you'll enjoy your new toy when you finally get it.
10.7.1 on Mac Pro 8x2.8
     
Cold Warrior
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Nov 2, 2008, 11:21 AM
 
Originally Posted by Ted L. Nancy View Post
I think USB 2.0 is sufficient for video editing (hence it being offered on most camcorders), especially for the author of the OP, who seems to only want to dabble with FCP et al. Nonetheless, this FW debate has gone far enough and will be moot sooner than later, as Apple, I suspect, is being forward looking (as usual) and will offer USB 3 in the MB ASAP.
In the USB 2.0 context of video 'editing', it's more for just video importing. The editing happens on your computer's hard drive. If you're a prosumer or professional with lots of video footage, storing and editing may happen on an external drive and USB 2.0 throughput sucks compared to FW 800 or even eSATA via expresscard.
     
   
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