Thanks for the replies! Seems easy indeed to install the drive.
On the one hand I am deciding between the W520 and M4600....on the other to go bigger with the Clevo 170EM maybe. The The M4600 especially with the IPS screen looks awesomely tempting....hehe. But pricey.
I have been using Windows for all my life but still feel like I want to try the forbidden apple.
For me its gonna be either the W530 or the MBP 15".
Question here: How do they compare in terms of gaming (if you think of the MBP having the 650m/7770)?
They are both roughly equal at gaming, since the Quadro 2100M (not much faster than 2000M) is similar to the GeForce GT 555M, and the 555M more or less is similar to the current-gen MBP cards (I would like to say they're also similar to the 650M and 7770, but I'm not 100% certain).
If you really want to try OSX so badly, you can always run a W530 as a Hackintosh for cheap (OSX discs are ~$30) and have the best of both worlds (whatever you find interesting of OSX + the cheaper/better hardware you get with a Wintel).
I agree with you that the W530 is the cheaper version with at least the same power.
here are the pros and cons for me:
- Chassis is less scratch affected than the aluminum body of the mac.
- more ports
- better support (I want to go with it as my business machine with onsite service)
- Gaming on Windows might be slightly better due to better drivers than the MBP
- Price: well, my company will pay for it so price is not that critical here
MBP 15" 2012 pros:
- Trackpad in compbination with MAc OS
- I already have an ipad3 and I am planning on getting a iPhone5, so this would have some benefits.
- More than the 180GB SSD only on the W530 (I dont want to upgrade on my own)
What I like about the Mac is its size (much thinner than the Thinkpad- I have to carry it to work every day), its better battery life and the retina display
--> I am not so sure if the retina display makes that much sense right now, because just little content is really made for such a high end screen. Also (I would like to game some games like MAx Payne3, BF3 and SCII) I am not sure if the GPU in the MBP can handle the games and the resolution at the same time).
What would you do?
Btw: Can I use the CD key (W7) of my current T60 for the boot camp of the MBP?
You forgot to list in the W530 pros that the Thinkpad lineup can stand much more abuse than a MBP. I refuse to baby my W520 and I treat it like crap (toss in bookbag with other books, off-road biking with it, toss on bed, several times I've dropped it from chest-height while both running and not, etc.). Drop a MBP on the floor and it'll certainly leave a dent, maybe even crack something. I'm ignoring any damage to the storage drive, because that's largely a HDD/SSD argument and is OS agnostic. Battery life on my W520 with a 9-cell and using only Intel graphics, I can get nearly 8-9 hours of Internet/Office use; using OSX and Windows Bootcamp, the MBP can get about 6-7 hours and 4-5 hours real-life battery life respectively.
1080p/1200p is pretty high as it is, and until Windows can scale DPI properly I don't see the point in have a "Retina" display in a laptop. Once you pass a certain DPI (200, iirc), the human eye cannot detect any differences between that and higher DPI levels. As for gaming, the current MBP GPUs are capable of handling those games at near-high/high detail at 1080p without problem, but the MBP body will heat up like an oven (burning you and/or your desk). I woundn't recommend any heavy gaming on a MBP (for that, I'd go for either a FirePro-based workstation or a gaming laptop; the Quadro 2000M/2100M can handle gaming as well, but it's expensive).
Since you've used Windows for most of your computing life and have no compelling reason to switch to another operating system (other than being curious), I'd recommend sticking to a Wintel system like the workstations listed. Download VirtualBox or VMWare, install OSX on that, and then feed your curiosity that way.
And no, you cannot use your T60 Windows license on Bootcamp. You'll need to purchase another Windows license to do that (either retail or OEM, EOM being cheaper).
Can someone comment on heating, fan noise? M4600 has two fans by which I suppose it should run cooler and quieter than the other two? I'm debating whether to buy the w530 now, or wait to see m4700/8570w. The price of W530 for my configure (3720qm, K2000m) is about $1500b before tax. I doubt neither m4700 nor 8570w can come down to this price right after release?