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georgemoore13

Gaming on the Macbook

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I am looking to get the Macbook for college. I think I am going to get the 2.0 GHz Core Duo Macbook with 2 GB of RAM. Most of what I have heard is you can't play any of the higher end game on them. I was curious if this is true even with 2 GB of RAM...I mean, can i play F.E.A.R. with decent graphics in the XP partition or will the integrated graphics hold me back?

 

I was also curious as how much can I save if I install my own RAM and internal hard drive? Is it worth it for the 2 GB of RAM and 120 GB hard drive?

 

Thanks for any help

 

: )

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Most of the higher end games will not play well, if at all on the MacBook due to it's graphic limitations. That said you have to remember that the MacBook (as with 99% of portable machines) was not designed for gaming. This really shouldn't make people complain as much as they do (not directed at you at all) because it's simply not what it was designed to do. If you want to game then I would say go with a desktop and honestly, a Wintel desktop at that. If you want to game on a Mac then the iMac G5 was a pretty good gaming machine and the Intel version should be even better (I know this doesn't help your need for a portable, but it's just not going to work very well, even on a Pro).

 

As for RAM/HDD prices... I actually looked into this yesterday albeit mainly for UK prices. I believe iBasden looked into USD prices and I had a quick shimmy around so it's reasonable to state this I think.

 

1GB: The prices generally for upgrades to the RAM are negligible at best. I was finding prices from $10-20 higher and lower than Apples price. Either way, by the time you have finished with any tax and shipping it's not worth the hassle for a few bucks as far as I can see. You may want to look around a little more before you buy, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say this is the first time I would buy from Apple.

 

2GB: Go it alone and save up to $300 (check out www.ramseeker.com as a good source)

 

HDDs on the other hand are cheaper elsewhere, $20-50, maybe more depending on the exact specs. Remember that you aren't just buying size, you are buying speed (which impacts on noise and battery life as well as heat). Another thing to consider is the new technology that is soon to be introduced. If you have another Mac, an external HDD or a network of some kind to use as additional storage then I would highly recommend waiting it out with a 60Gb standard for the new hardware to hit the streets first.

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Thanks, that was very very helpful..

 

Ok, so high end gaming is out...

 

What about Spore (when it comes out)?

 

And with the hard drives, will the Macbook take any 9.5 mm SATA drive?

 

And how much is a faster drive going to lower battery life?

 

 

 

 

(The Mac community is so much more helpful and accessible. I can't wait to switch)

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The MBP makes a quite good gaming machine. At least as well as the imac. It's not necessarily so to say that laptaps arent designed for gaming. Some higher end ones are, with chips that compare to the highest end desktop GPU's. I will say that you aren't going to do high end gaming on a laptop smaller than 15" because of space restrictions on the logic boards.

http://www.gen-x-pc.com/note_5950.htm There are some laptops around that are especially designed for gamers also.

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I said 99% for a reason Morn ;) As for the MBP gaming... You could but there is no way I would risk frying a brand new notebook. High end gamers simply shouldn't consider gaming on a laptop, period. (That isn't just my opinion, but the consensus of the gaming community.)

 

Spore I am not entirely sure about. I have not looked at the required specs at all but I would think it would be okay. It's quite borderline because the game should not require too much in the way of graphics processing from what I have seen, however it will undoubtedly be a CPU and RAM hog as all Sims titles were.

 

The MacBook will take any notebook (9.5) SATA drive yes and some really nice new ones are on their way from a number of companies as discussed in another thread around here. It's always tough to estimate effect on the battery from a different HDD. Part of it is always efficiency and this varies from company to company. It also depends what speed and how much you use it. I for one store most of my files online and the HDD spends 90%+ of it's time only accessing my iTunes library; not very hard work. If however you frequently use your HDD, keep an untidy system or run tons of applications at a time it will have a much higher effect. I for one would probably stick with a 5400rpm drive unless you really think you would benefit at all from 7200rpm (photoshoppers, "gamers", photographers etc.).

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I was just assuming that Spore would run on a macbookpro. Am I wrong? That would be a shame.

 

As far as I understand the Macbookpro is one of the faster core duo machines on the market but it's not a gameing machine. I wasn't expecting spore to have huge requirements.

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That's absurd, it's a high end pro laptop, it's designed to do tasks that generate a lot of heat. ;)

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I was just assuming that Spore would run on a macbookpro. Am I wrong? That would be a shame.

 

As far as I understand the Macbookpro is one of the faster core duo machines on the market but it's not a gameing machine. I wasn't expecting spore to have huge requirements.

 

Honestly, I don't even know if Mac is seeing a version, but if it is then I would imagine it would run on a Pro; how well is another question however. As a point of reference Sims 2 ran like rubbish (slow as hell and crashed a lot) on a very clean WXP install with an Athlon64 4000+, 2Gb RAM (2-2-2-5) and a dedicated 10,000rpm HDD. FSB I can't remember, but it sent tingles down my spine. Overall I guess what I am saying is that I wouldn't expect "world loads" or transitions to editors or even saves to be less than 5 minutes on any notebook computer, and borderline on most others. It looks pretty intense after all.

 

As always, this is my best guess based on some pretty ranged real world hardware and gaming experience. No one gets it right every time and perhaps they will take some hints from Epic Games.

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"Take the awesome power of a desktop and transform it into a sleek one inch dream. Mega-wide screen, super fast, intense graphics — enter the MacBook Pro. Whether you are a professional on the road, die-hard gamer or just looking for the best notebook available, this is the mobile solution for you (and it includes Front Row theater software with Apple Remote)."

 

Apples own web site on the MBP. ;)

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"Take the awesome power of a desktop and transform it into a sleek one inch dream. Mega-wide screen, super fast, intense graphics — enter the MacBook Pro. Whether you are a professional on the road, die-hard gamer or just looking for the best notebook available, this is the mobile solution for you (and it includes Front Row theater software with Apple Remote)."

 

Apples own web site on the MBP. ;)

 

I knew someone would bring that up. But then there was the real world.

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And the real world is that a 2ghz core duo and a x1600 do a really good job at gaming.

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Hahaha, Thanks everyone. You have been really helpful. I think I am going to stick with the stock drive and get a larger one or external one later. You guys rock.

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I would point out that 15 of my friends and even my Mom have dumped their PCs and bought new Intel based Macs.

 

While my Mom is not a huge gamer all of the others are, and they play hard.

 

The games that we have tried using Boot Camp and run GREAT with good graphic movement and sound on the following:

 

MacBook Pro

15"

2.16 GHz

2 MB Ram

 

and

 

iMac 17"

1.83 GHz

1 GB Ram

 

The games we have tested and work great are:

 

FEAR

AGE OF EMPIRES 3

THE SETTLERS : HERITAGE OF KINGS

TRAIN TYCOON 3

BATTLEFIELD 2

 

We are hard core gamers and these games we have tried work great on the Windows side of the Mac using Boot Camp.

 

Have fun gaming...

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This is encouraging. I am going to get it regardless of its gaming capabilities, but gaming is a nice bonus. I was extremely impressed with the Macbook. I was at the Apple retail store playing with the 1.83 GHz model with 512 MB of RAM and it was really impressive at multitasking. I opened iTunes and had it convert some songs to mp3, then opened iPhoto and had it export some photos, then I had it play back a 720p Xmen 3 trailer. It did it all flawlessly. The video was smooth and everything. I also tried playing a Fantastic 4 trailer and then playing the X men trailer full screen and still had no problems. I am so excitied. It should be quite an improvement from my current 1.7 GHz, 256 RAM Dell.

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