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Author Topic: MacBook Pro - matte or glossy? 7200 RPM?  (Read 13411 times)
deelight
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« on: January 30, 2007, 12:15:55 PM »
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Hi everyone on the forum!

I am in the market for the new Macbook Pro 17 and wonder about the qualitiy of the new screens (matte & glossy). Has anyone experiences with both screens? What about the new glossy screen? Looks great in the shop but are there any real world experiences under working conditions (professional photography)?

Is the glossy screen easy/well to profile?

Would you recommend the 7200 RPM 100GB small HD? Quite small but of course faster - but in real worlds working conditions noticable faster? Any other reasons for your choice?

Thanks for any input and have a nice evening!!!

Best,

Clem
« Last Edit: January 30, 2007, 12:17:29 PM by deelight » Logged

Gary Ferguson
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« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2007, 12:42:28 PM »
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The logic board on my 17" Powerbook died last week so I decided to get a new Macbook Pro with a three year warranty (wish I'd gone for the extended warranty option with the Powerbook-the logic board repair cost wasn't too far from the price of the Macbook Pro).

I looked at the anti-glare/matte screen versus the glossy in the Apple store and was advised that there's no calibration advantages either way. The glossy screen gives richer colours and deeper blacks, but as you'd expect it's more prone to reflections. As I sometimes use it outside and tethered I went for the anti-glare screen, if I used it only inside or if it was the main computer I used for editing then I'd have probably gone for the glossy.

IMO it's not a decision worth losing sleep over, whichever one you choose you'll likely forget about it the day after you get the laptop. It's not like choosing between glossy or matte paper, that is a big deal!
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David White
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« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2007, 10:36:02 PM »
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I just ordered a MacBook Pro 17" with the glossy screen (due in tomorrow morning).  The increased gamut seemed like a plus to me.  A lot of people reported no or minimal problems with the glossy screen.  Many reported problems with looking at the matte screen for long periods of time.  It is probably just a personal preference which you won't notice after the first day or so as Gary said.  Glare problems can always be worked around with small changes in position or screen angle.

  I went with the 160GB 5400rpm drive since I figure that I can change it later as the 7200rpm drives increase in size.  100GB just seemed a little small since I will be running   Windows XP under Parallels Desktop.
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Ken Tanaka
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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2007, 12:04:39 AM »
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For my 17" Mac Book Pro I chose the matte screen after looking closely at both versions.  The glossy screen can give the appearance of a slightly higher contrast given the right background lighting.  But the veiling reflections on the glossy screen would have, in my opinion,  have negated such slight additional clarity as often as not.  It's important to also keep in mind that the appearance of the screen has absolutely no affect on the "gamut" or color correctness of an image whatsoever.  

So the best display is the one that you'll find most comfortable to use in all situations.
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David White
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« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2007, 01:34:16 AM »
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Quote
FIt's important to also keep in mind that the appearance of the screen has absolutely no affect on the "gamut" or color correctness of an image whatsoever. 
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=98452\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Understood that the screen type has nothing to do with the gamut or color of the image.  Perhaps I should have said that I preferred the appearance of images as seen with the glossy screen.
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David White
deelight
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« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2007, 02:10:49 AM »
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Understood that the screen type has nothing to do with the gamut or color of the image.  Perhaps I should have said that I preferred the appearance of images as seen with the glossy screen.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=98461\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Thank you all for your thoughts and answers.

I am still not sure where I will be going, but each opinion helps to find my choice. Thanks.

I still do not know, if the 7200 will be noticably faster than the slower drives, will they possibly slow the macbook down a little bit? Anyone who compared the HDs? Of course you can change, but aswell to another, bigger 7200 later...  

If the glossy screen is well to calibrate I think I will go with it, as Dave said there will always be little workarounds to avoid glare problems. And I think I will mostly use it under studio or indoor conditions.

Okay then, have to work a little bit  
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med007
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« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2007, 04:45:01 AM »
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Thank you all for your thoughts and answers.

I am still not sure where I will be going, but each opinion helps to find my choice. Thanks.

I still do not know, if the 7200 will be noticably faster than the slower drives, will they possibly slow the macbook down a little bit? Anyone who compared the HDs? Of course you can change, but aswell to another, bigger 7200 later...   

If the glossy screen is well to calibrate I think I will go with it, as Dave said there will always be little workarounds to avoid glare problems. And I think I will mostly use it under studio or indoor conditions.

Okay then, have to work a little bit 
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I had to make the same choice. I tried out both and found that to be least distracting for critical work the reflectivity of the glossy screen was for me at least unacceptable.

Moreover, the regular screen is superb!

I'd say it is up there in quality approaching my Eizo CG 210.

The contrast ans color seems pretty well perfect. No that's not good enough. This is the most wonderful laptop I have owned. I must admit that my Dual 2.3 GHZ Tower is sitting unused as I have gotten connected up with my SATA Express 34 card to my Mercury Elite Pro SATA enclosure with 2 500 GB drives. So I have a powerful Nirvana photography editing system.

Frankly I cant see anything better coming around the corner.

I have zero issues working with CS2 or iview and forget that I only have 2GB RAM!

Asher Kelman

[a href=\"http://openphotographyforums.com]http://openphotographyforums.com[/url]
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Roy
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« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2007, 12:21:24 PM »
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I still do not know, if the 7200 will be noticably faster than the slower drives, will they possibly slow the macbook down a little bit? Anyone who compared the HDs? Of course you can change, but aswell to another, bigger 7200 later...   
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

You will find a good comparison of hard drive performance here:
[a href=\"http://www.barefeats.com/mbcd7.html]http://www.barefeats.com/mbcd7.html[/url]

After reading this article, I wish I had not spent the extra money for a 7200 rpm drive. A larger 5400 rpm drive is better value and uses less power.

I chose the regular non-glossy screen. Too many reflections from the glossy screen. The whole point of a notebook computer is portability and that means uncontrolled lighting conditions.
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Roy
Kirk Gittings
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« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2007, 12:51:50 PM »
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Rather than upgrading the oldest of my desktop workstations (I now have two Dells, one a generation old and one two generations old), I am thinking about buying a current, top of the line 15" laptop, to replace the oldest workstation and my current laptop ( I now have a 13" G4 Powerbook). This would be used on the road of course for tethered shooting and in the home office for working on image files and accounting etc. with a separate desktop large monitor (could I use the laptop monitor, when I am at home for the secondary monitor?). This would enable me to run Windows on everything (my brain aches from having to mentally switch back and forth) and consolidate down to just two computers.

How much speed improvement are you seeing on the MacBook Pros? The G4 was barely adequate (by my impatient standards) for working on image files so I only used it when on the road when necessary and for communication.

One of my out of town clients requires that I deliver files before leaving town. That is about 50 38MB images with individual CR conversion and some post processing. So I need this laptop to perform.

Thoughts? A MBP with maxed out memory and HD? Will this serve my needs in the home /office (with a separate monitor) and on the road?
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Thanks,
Kirk

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deelight
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« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2007, 03:24:39 PM »
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A MBP with maxed out memory and HD? Will this serve my needs in the home /office (with a separate monitor) and on the road?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=98731\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

This is an interesting point: with the seperate monitor it should be an allround workstation.

I currently use the last iMac G5 and am quite satisfied with the speed (could be faster though of course), even if my files are a lot bigger, around 125 MB after raw conversion.

@med007: would you say, the screen is good enough for more or less critical professional color corrections? (at least as good as the iMac screen, which is definitely not the best   ...)

Best,

Clem
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deelight
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« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2007, 03:34:58 PM »
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You will find a good comparison of hard drive performance here:
http://www.barefeats.com/mbcd7.html


[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=98726\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Roy: Thanks for the link, indeed VERY interesting!

Clem
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David White
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« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2007, 05:00:09 PM »
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My MBP 17" with glossy screen arrived on Tuesday.  I've had it in a lot of bright places and find that I am not at all bothered by glare.  Even when there are reflections or bright light on the screen, the contents are highly visible.  Most extreme instances can be easiy fixed by shifting my position an inch or so or slightly adjusting the tilt of the screen.  My old Toshiba would get washed out in bright light and be pretty unusable.  I'm very pleased with my choice of the glossy screen.
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David White
jjlphoto
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« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2007, 05:28:56 PM »
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I saw a new glossy one next to my old matte one in an extremely bright setting. The glossy one seemed to allow you to see it better in that type of situation, like outdoors.
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eronald
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« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2007, 07:38:17 AM »
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I now have a recent production sample of the 17" MBP sitting in front of me, and the screen looks rather better than the demonstration samples; homogeneity is good inside the panel (away from the eges), but directivity remains an issue. I quite like it, but it won't compete with my desktop screen.

Edmund
« Last Edit: February 03, 2007, 06:40:21 PM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
tedchoi11
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« Reply #14 on: February 05, 2007, 10:34:10 PM »
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deleted- repetitious.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2007, 10:35:02 PM by tedchoi11 » Logged
ddolde
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« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2007, 11:03:52 AM »
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Apple is soon going to release a new model MacBook Pro using LEDs instead of cold cathode tubes for backlighting.  This is a good reason to wait til the next generation, not to mention Leopard.

See  http://www.appleinsider.com/article.php?id=2426
« Last Edit: February 06, 2007, 11:05:40 AM by ddolde » Logged
Dale Allyn
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« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2007, 10:11:18 AM »
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I much prefer the matte screens. I have a several Apple displays and laptops, but the one glossy that I have (MacBook, not MacBook Pro) is a real pain for photo viewing and editing IMO. I've compared all the screens at the Apple stores and if you can do the same it would likely help you. That said, if you do go to make the comparison I would recommend that you log on to a site to view your own photos if possible.

I have one photo on my site that prints beautifully, show beautifully on my matte screens (all Apple) and is a total blown-out, overly contrasty mess on the glossy screen MacBook. And I tend to be VERY conservative in my processing, not liking "pumped up" photos. Luckily I use the MacBook as my traveling internet appliance mostly, as well as a place to view photos shot while in Asia, etc., but I can't reliably edit photos on it. It's just too contrasty IMO.

I don't find it badly affected by glare or reflection. I just don't care for the hyper-contrast and saturation.

Obviously, everyone prefers different equipment and workflows, so please don't take this an emphatic statement. I'd just caution the OP to study the screens in person if you can. I'll try never to buy another glossy screen, even to the point of buying another MacBook Pro where the lesser sibling would be fine for my traveling tool, just to avoid the screen.

Good luck with your decision.

Dale
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eronald
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« Reply #17 on: February 08, 2007, 01:03:05 AM »
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I have been profiling my matte MacBook Pro 17" with a variety of devices and software.

It took me a lot of time to get an acceptable (read not good) rendering out of it. There is some banding.

I'm not going to throw rocks at the guys who make the software or hardware, not because they're all my friends, but because their stuff works fine on everything else I own. This is simply not a graphics screen.

However, I'm not sure that a naive user would get decent renderings - on the other hand if they don't complain maybe they don't deserve better.

My friends who know this product and market and own good desktop screens opine that the design/edit market is now at most 5% of the laptops sold and it's simply not worth it to Apple any more to provide better color.

Nice machine, average screen.

Edmund
« Last Edit: February 08, 2007, 01:22:22 AM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
Dale Allyn
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« Reply #18 on: February 08, 2007, 06:41:00 AM »
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I agree with Edmund's remarks. I don't edit on my portables. Calibrating the displays is a exercise in frustration in my opinion. Some use quality external displays with their PowerBooks/MacBook Pros, and this is what I would have to do in order to get acceptable results when in my apartment or office in Bangkok. Luckily, I don't have edit here and can normally wait until I return to my home in the States.

Likewise, we have one iMac (17") which is very difficult to calibrate, in that it is not consistent.

For me, the bottom line is that I don't like laptop displays (or the iMac) for color critical work. For me, the frustration is just not worth it. That being said, I still prefer the matte screen on the MacBook Pros.

Cheers,

Dale
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deelight
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« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2007, 10:17:56 AM »
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Dear all!

Yesterday I received my 17" Macbook Pro  

I decided for the glossy screen and the 7200 HD.

My findings were, that pictures on the glossy screen looked much better: sharper, more contrast and nicer color (I saw my own website on different glossy and different matte screens). And a note aside: I am happier with glares that are obvious and with sharp corner than with fluffy glares on the matte screen where you might not notice them or cannot exactly decide between glare and picture brightness.

On the other hand it is important to say, that I will not do color critical work on the laptop screen. I will buy a seperate monitor for this work. The screen of my Macbook is not good enough, has differences in brighness between the corners and the rest of the screen, also very slightly darker sections. I see them best with a grey and empty desktop.

Concerning the HD I decided to only have the software on the laptop and some data stuff, but no pictures. With my Leaf Aptus I will work directly to external HD. This will be the following solution which I already ordered: Sonnet eSATA express card (3 GBits/s) and the Sonnet Fusion 500P with Port Multiplier.

This connection will in best case nearly be 4 times faster than FW800. Although it should be mentioned, that the current HDs are not that fast and that the Aptus has FW400  

However, thanks for the input and have a nice day with a LOT of work, guys!!!

Best,

Clem
« Last Edit: February 09, 2007, 10:18:34 AM by deelight » Logged

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