Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.
That’s the sound of me laughing at Apple fanboys spluttering and fuming over Microsoft’s new “I’m a PC” ad, in which “Lauren” says she can’t afford a Mac and buys an HP notebook instead.
The hardware in question is the $699 at Best Buy HP – Pavilion Laptop with AMD Turion™ X2 RM-72 Dual-Core Mobile Processor… It is the epitome of what people dislike about PCs… It runs Vista Home on a slow AMD mobile processor. It has DDR2 RAM which is what $300 Netbooks run.
The cheapest Mac notebook you can buy (the one “Lauren” rejected) is the $999 white model, which is based on a three-year-old design with a more modern CPU and graphics chip. What kind of RAM do you think it uses? Please, look to the right, where I have helpfully highlighted the specs as captured from Apple’s website a few minutes ago.
So, to sum up. Apple’s $999 computer uses the same crappy DDR2 RAM as the HP. You know, the junk that, according to Weintraub, should only be put in $300 netbooks. The same junk that was in any MacBook or MacBook Pro sold before January 2009.
Yes, that’s right. Using Weintraub’s impeccable analysis, if you paid $2800 for a MacBook Pro last December, you are a complete loser and you should probably remove those inferior DDR2 memory chips it came with, hone them to a sharp edge, and slash your wrists with them. Or donate that useless four-month-old piece of crap to charity or sell it on eBay and replace it with a new MacBook Pro with DDR3 RAM for (cough) another $2800.
And how about the Intel P7350 CPU in that $999 MacBook? Personally, I think it’s fast enough for most mainstream uses, but benchmarking pros would probably call it “a slow Intel mobile processor.” Check out where its performance falls relative to other Intel and AMD CPUs in the PassMark Software benchmarks. (Hint: You’ll need to scroll way down to the bottom. I’ve pasted a thumbnail of the chart on the left, with the P7350 circled in red.)
Of course, Lauren could have gone looking for a 15-inch screen, in which case she would have been able to go to CompUSA.com and spend $950 on the HP Pavilion dv5-1010us ($999 list, with $50 discounts typical). It uses the exact same P7350 Intel processor as the bottom-of-the-line $999 white MacBook that Apple offers today but also includes 4GB of RAM (Apple charges $100 for the 4GB upgrade), a 320GB hard drive (Apple will hit you for $175 to upgrade from the ridiculously small 120GB drive in its $999 model), a 15.4” screen (34% more screen area than the 13.3” MacBook screen), a wireless remote ($19 extra from Apple), draft-N wireless networking, a webcam, HDMI and FireWire outputs, built-in Bluetooth, and a 64-bit operating system (Vista Home Premium).
More memory, bigger screen, bigger hard disk, a 64-bit OS, costs a lot less. A similarly configured MacBook (but still with that 13.3” screen) costs $1293, which is a $300+ premium over the HP notebook. And the good folks at Retrevo, who make their living at this stuff, analyzed 33 user reviews for the dv5-1010us and found that 93% were positive.
Of course, if Lauren had asked me I probably would have suggested she visit Dell’s website and look at the Studio 15 notebook, which is available with nearly identical specs to the HP model above but can be upgraded to an Intel Core 2 Duo P8600 CPU that will run rings around the P7350. When I configured that model at Dell’s website a few minutes ago, it cost a mere $874.
Why do Apple fanboys have such a hard time acknowledging that Apple hardware really does cost more than similarly configured PC alternatives?