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MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...

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Les Kaye
MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 5:45:23 am

I'm currently on a PC at home, but had been psyching myself up on getting the new 15" MacBook Pro for home and LIGHT pro use. Today however, I happened to end up at CompUSA (via the Tower liquidation sale - another story), and came across the new Sony 17" VAIO QR250G. It truly was stunning - beautiful big screen that seemed more impressive than the MBP. It's a Core 2 Duo, and has a built in TV tuner (something that's not unimportant), larger 200G hard drive and Windows Media Center. So it's given me pause... The main reason for the move was to have the FCP Suite at home. However I'm also comfortable with Avid as well as WinXP, so it's not like I wouldn't have a pro option if I went the PC way.

Any thoughts? Is there a Mac option for the built-in TV tuner and Media Center? Will ITV be cross-platform. Should I take this to another forum? I guess I'm asking to be talked back onto the Apple ledge...


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Jeff Carpenter
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 7:01:16 am

If you want a TV tuner for a mac you should look here:

http://www.elgato.com/

They have a couple of different products.

As for the Sony, can you link to a page with the exact model? I can't really give advice on a computer if I don't know exactly which one it is and what it costs. Searching the Sony VAIO website for "QR250G" doesn't bring up anything.

Give us a link and I'd be glad to compare the pros and cons for you!


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Les Kaye
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 7:10:40 am

[Jeff Carpenter] "QR250G" doesn't bring up anything."

I guess it wouldn't Jeff, since it's the VAIO "AR250G 17" (my bad). Thanks posting. I look forward to your feedback.


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Gunleik Groven
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 8:02:00 am

This is a nice machine -;)

The MBP is marginally faster and has a similarily marginally faster GFX card, but you'll have to add an extra gig of ram and a larger drive to get the same specs.

(prices compared between amazon and applestore)

Mind you that you can run both OSX and XP on the MBP.

The 17" MBP is more expensive - but also nicer...


You're sort of in the "the price reflects the value" segment of hardware here, and its all nuances. But if you'd like a good XP machine and have a look at the OSX goodies, the MBP is the way to go.

You can either set up dualboot with Bootcamp or boot XP within OSX with parallels


Gunleik


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Jeff Carpenter
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 6:11:33 pm

What Gunleik said is pretty much it. Do you want to run Windows or do you want to run OS X (with the option of Windows too)? For me, the ability to use OS X and Final Cut is all I need to know. It's no choice for me.

Since you seem program ambivalent here's what I found, hardware-wise. I raised the Macbook pro to a 200 GB hard drive and ended up with a price of $2,900. The Sony on Amazon is $2,150 after rebate. So what differences are there for that $750? I may have missed some things, but I quickly counted up 13 "pros" for the Mac, 3 "pros" for the Sony, and 2 features that are different but coudn't really be called "pro" one way or the other.

It's up to you to decide if these extra features are worth $750 to you.

PROs for the MAC
* Macbook Pro has a 2.33 gHz chip to the Sony's 2.0 gHz.

* Macbook Pro has a 1680 x 1050 screen to the Sony's 1440 x 900

* Macbook Pro RAM is faster. (Mac's 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM (PC2-5300) to Sony's PC2-4200 533MHz DDR2 SDRAM.)

* Macbook Pro has 256 MB Video RAM to Sony's 128 MB. I think the Mac's card is faster too, but I'm not sure what that means, exactly.

* The Mac's ethernet is Gigabit 1000, the Sony's is only 100BASE.

* Sony's firewire port is 4-pin only, cannot power items. Mac's is 6-pin.

* Mac has Firewire 800 port.

* Mac has backlit keyboard.

* Mac has sudden-motion sensor that stops hard drives from spinning if laptop is dropped, hopefully preserving data.

* Apple claims "up to 5.5 hours" battery life, Sony claims "1.5 - 2.5 hours."

* Mac weighs 6.8 pounds. Sony weighs 8.4 pounds.

* Mac is 15.4" x 10.4" x 1"
Sony is 16.4" x 11.8" x 1.32"

* Mac can run OS X and Windows.



PROs for the Sony
* Sony has a Modem, the Mac's is sold seperately and external.

* Sony has TV tuner

* Sony has some kind of "Electro-Static touch pad" as an input device. I'm not sure what that is, but it's listed on the Sony site.



NEUTRAL Differences
* Both have express cards, Mac's is a newer, smaller standard, but this means there will be more cards for sale for the Sony since it's older.

* Sony has memory card reader, but for Sony cards, of course, not other standards.


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Les Kaye
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 7:03:51 pm

Thanks Jeff. Ignore my reponse to Genleik which I sent before seeing yours. You raise some great points, and if price were no object, or at least more more comparable it would be a no brainer. HOWEVER...$900 makes me stop and think. I suppose I could get the Sony, and with the savings just wait to get a MacBook when the Core 2 Duos hit the line (g).

Seriously, the benefits you raise were what I needed to hear.

Thx,
-Les


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Bob Woodhead
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 6, 2006 at 12:36:49 pm

Ignoring the laptops respective operating systems, I'd go with the Sony. 25-30% cheaper, relatively comparable boxes. BUT (**big** BUT) it's the OS that brings the system to life. I've been PC for 20 years, SGI/Mac/PC for 7 years, and now Mac/PC for 4 years. Until OSX, never had a desire for Mac as my primary box. Now I have no desire for another PC. Sure, I've got a XP box next to my G5, but 95% of my work is done on the Mac, and that's the way I now prefer it. Yeah, I sound like a drooling Mac syncophant, but bottom line is that after 20 years of computer use, I like the Mac better than the others, period. (Note it wasn't always that way. I even preferred NT over OS9!) And now that you can dual-boot a Mac.... well DUH.
So what I'm saying is, don't compare the hardware, compare the OS's.


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Les Kaye
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 6, 2006 at 4:02:45 pm

Thanks Bob. While I do prefer OSX marginally, I also don't think XP is the devil's work either. In my case it's not the OS, it's the APPS on the OS - meaning the FCP suite. Take that away and the Sony would be a no-brainer.

But because of yours and the other posts, I'll probably end up with a Mac.


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Les Kaye
Re: MBP vs Sony VAIO quandry...
on Nov 5, 2006 at 6:56:14 pm

Thank you Gunleik. I've tried to make them equally comparable and so added a modem to the MBP changed the Mac drive to 200MB. The processor is the variable. The Sony comes with a 1 year warranty vs. the MBP 90 days, but both warranties can be extended.

It just seems like a rather steep 30% premium for the MBP.


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