Quantcast Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

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  1. #1
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    Default Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    So after 6 long years of wanting to get a mac, I finally bit the bullet and ordered one - the retail US$2200 Sandy Bridge 15" Macbook Pro. Was clearing out my 2-year savings worth it? Going to pick it up at the store tommorow, we'd see.

    Anyways, I digress..

    I was wondering; since I'm OCD when it comes to scratches/smudges on expensive (US$1000+) electronics, what kind of accesories would you recommend? I've used Windows on every computer I've owned to date. What apps/plug-ins should I install to make my "transition" easier?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    ....are the stickies not helpful enough?
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    Yes please have a look at the sticky topics for software. If you have any particular needs ask a more detailed question. Have a look at the Mac freeware sticky and the switcher guide.

    The same goes for accessories. There are so many for with price ranges of 10 - 200$ or more. So we would need a price range and some more details what you are looking for.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    I recommend you don't install any custom software first, but rather play around and figure out what OS X comes with. There's plenty of great stuff. Start with my favourite app: System Preferences. ;D

    I would just install Chrome and OnLive to begin with.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    Quote Originally Posted by wave View Post
    Yes please have a look at the sticky topics for software. If you have any particular needs ask a more detailed question. Have a look at the Mac freeware sticky and the switcher guide.

    The same goes for accessories. There are so many for with price ranges of 10 - 200$ or more. So we would need a price range and some more details what you are looking for.
    Thanks guys!

    Since I've already spent so much already, I don't have a lot of dough left to spare. Say US$100 on accessories? Screen+keyboard protector or maybe a leather case if they're not too expensive perhaps? Already got the magic mouse so that's off the list.

    As for the apps, what shurcool said sounds reasonable enough. Chrome and onlive it is.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    I am in a similar position, having just got a 13" MBP after years of owning Windows PCs. I've had the opportunity to borrow and use Mac Pros and MBPs for video editing projects though.

    Anyways, these are my recommendations because I still use my Windows desktop for gaming so I wanted to see certain features on my MBP:

    Hyperdock ($10)-Allows you to preview open windows for each app just by hovering over the icons on the dock.

    Tuxera NTFS-3G Community- Write and modify NTFS drives. Kind of buggy but it works fine for the most part. I tried something else and it wouldn't mount my external.

    Insomniat- for those times you want to close the laptop but still have it playing music or downloading. You need to create a .command file to have it enabled every time you power on but I can't get it to work. Something about permissions but I don't need it enabled anyways.

    Divvy ($14)- Windows snapping feature. It is better than iSnap and I didn't try the other ones.

    Also, XBMC as a media extender to stream if you need it.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    Went to pick it up and guess what? The salesman didn't place the order and I have to wait until Wednesday.

    Got a keyboard cover protector for 17 bucks. The keys are most prone to wear-and-tear; figured why not.

    Who here thinks the protective cases are worth it? I wouldn't be taking the notebook out a whole lot but I do plan to from time-to-time.

  8. #8
    Rock Chalk Jayhawk
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    $40 is worth the risk of a dent in the aluminum. Speck and incase are the most popular cases.
    Desktop: i5-2500k@4.2Ghz & MSI GTX 660 Ti PE/OC
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    I d go with:
    1) defensive shell of your choice (there you can put it into any bag you currently have)
    2) external mouse and maybe keyboard (i prefer one because i use it with external monitor a lot)
    3) photoshop (obviously optional)

    I guess thats all i need.
    Using safari btw.
    Sure thats only thing that ever crashed on my mac but its like once per month so i refrain from downloading additional software.
    MBP 15. 2.2GHz Core i7 Quad. 6750m 1GB GDDR5.
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Getting started with the Macbook Pro (recommended accessories, apps, etc..)

    I purchased a 2011 Core i7 13" MacBook Pro. These are the accessories that I purchased along with it:
    • Black Spec SeeThru shell - I wanted this as I thought it would allow me to carry my MBP anywhere but it still left some of it unprotected and I often found lint and dust between it and my MBP (which could lead to scratches). I wanted more protection for my money so I returned it.
    • Incase protective case - $40 and offers extremely thick padding, it is enough that I can throw my MBP in a backpack and not worry about it getting dented or scratched. The inside is also extremely soft using fake fur that somewhat wipes my MBP clean every time I take it out or put it back into the case. It was one of the more expensive sleeves for the 13" MBP but it is worlds better than the cheap polypropylene (ie thin plastic) slip cases sold by Incase and many other companies.
    • Magic Mouse - I didn't want an external mouse as I love the built-in trackpad but I hook my MBP up to my 1080p HDTV all the time and having said mouse makes couch surfing a lot easier.
    • Apple bluetooth keyboard - Again, I didn't want an external keyboard but having a wireless solution makes couch surfing better.
    • Twelve South BookArc - This is essentially a "dock" that holds my MBP next to my HDTV and gives me full access to all its ports. It is as a little expensive ($50 at Best Buy) but it is a lot better than just having my MBP sit there on my HD cable receiver+DVR unit.
    • 8GB of DDR3 1333MHz RAM - This was about $85 and that included the $4 for the appropriate Phillips head screwdriver. If anything, I think upgrading the RAM should be the very first thing that you do (it was the first thing I did).
    • MATLAB - I am an engineer and MATLAB runs through my blood. I need it for my job and my next degree (which I will be starting soon).
    • Office 2011 - I didn't want Office but I run some spreadsheet macros that work only with Excel.
    • Parallels - I need to run Windows but didn't want to bootcamp my MBP.
    • Windows 7 Ultimate x64 - I run this using Parallels. I really only run two things in Windows: Internet Explorer (for the government sites that are still using archaic scripts that work with IE only) and SigmaPlot.


    I purchased the software for a total of $50 from my university bookstore (future university). Otherwise it would have come out to a higher price that what I paid for my MBP to begin with. Anything that isn't software comes highly recommended by myself for certain uses. You don't need an external mouse and keyboard unless you plan on using your MBP from a distance. Otherwise the built-in options are good. I actually think that the built-in trackpad is better than the Magic Mouse.
    2012 MBP 15" - Core i7 2.3GHz - 16GB 1600MHz DDR3 - 1TB Seagate Momentus XT - OS X 10.9.2
    64GB Dell Venue 8 Pro | 64GB iPad mini

 

 
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