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Old Dec 10, 2012, 04:04 PM   #1
fenner
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
iMac or MBP

Hi Guys. I currently have an old Mac Pro (Xeon Dual Core 2.66Ghz) which I want to upgrade. I am toying between two options:

1. 27" iMac with my old 24" cinema display as a second monitor
2. 13" MBP (2.9Ghz i7 or the 2.5Ghz Retina i5) with a 27" Thunderbolt display

I mostly use Photoshop, InDesign, Filemaker Pro and the usual email, etc. No games and minimal video editing (occassionally as a hobby). I don't really need the portability - but would be a nice extra. I must have two screens, but 2nd screen need not be large - I largely use the 2nd screen for app panels. I am tending towards the MBP with Thunderbolt Display. My current, dated computer c. 2007, seems fine speed wise so I am sure both above options will be leaps ahead anyway.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. If MBP should I go with the non-retina version - I don't want my 2nd screen to look better than my primary screen and I wouldn't need a CD drive on my desk too then.

Or what about the top MB Air instead of MBP - slower processor, but flash storage?

Thanks, Peter

Last edited by fenner; Dec 10, 2012 at 04:08 PM. Reason: Added Query
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 04:57 PM   #2
jrasero
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: NYC
Quote:
Originally Posted by fenner View Post
Hi Guys. I currently have an old Mac Pro (Xeon Dual Core 2.66Ghz) which I want to upgrade. I am toying between two options:

1. 27" iMac with my old 24" cinema display as a second monitor
2. 13" MBP (2.9Ghz i7 or the 2.5Ghz Retina i5) with a 27" Thunderbolt display

I mostly use Photoshop, InDesign, Filemaker Pro and the usual email, etc. No games and minimal video editing (occassionally as a hobby). I don't really need the portability - but would be a nice extra. I must have two screens, but 2nd screen need not be large - I largely use the 2nd screen for app panels. I am tending towards the MBP with Thunderbolt Display. My current, dated computer c. 2007, seems fine speed wise so I am sure both above options will be leaps ahead anyway.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. If MBP should I go with the non-retina version - I don't want my 2nd screen to look better than my primary screen and I wouldn't need a CD drive on my desk too then.

Or what about the top MB Air instead of MBP - slower processor, but flash storage?

Thanks, Peter
I would say your 1st two choices of iMac or MBPR make sense. While I would love to recommend the MBA I think your usage could put strain on it.

The iMac i7 is comparably fast to the MBPR 15" i7, so it's not really a speed issue but rather portability. IMO I would go with the MBPR 15" because you get the same power as the iMac but you also get portability.

But again I love the new iMac. I used to have the 2011 iMac and sold it just because I never used it and found myself using my Air. Do you find sitting down to do a lot of your work or do you use your computer on the go?
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 05:58 PM   #3
theluggage
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by fenner View Post
I don't really need the portability - but would be a nice extra.
If you're never going to use the portability - I'd get the iMac. Having 27" + 24" screens should be nice...

If you're planning carrying it around a lot (e.g. on flights or trains) and it is powerful enough for you, I'd get the 13" Air - which is much thinner and lighter and has a slightly higher screen that the "original" 13" MBP. The Thunderbolt display should address the limited connectivity of the Air. (Or spring for the Retina).

If your idea of portability is to sling it in the back of the car and "desk hop" then I'd go for the 15" - it is nicer to use 'stand alone' & you can get the discrete graphics.

If you go the laptop + TBD route I'd recommend getting a full-sized wired keyboard, a mouse or magic touchpad and something like a Griffin Elevator stand: makes it just like using a 27" desktop - but when you want to move you just unplug and go.
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