I am after a Mac for graphics work

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by robins2001, Jan 3, 2004.

  1. robins2001 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #1
    hello, let me explain my situation...

    I am a current pc user (p4, 1.6), i am a training digital illustrator and use alot of photoshop/illustrator etc maybe some lightwave/formz in a few months too. we use macs at college (g4 450-500?) they seem ok but getting on abit now.

    i am going to be switching over soon, thats certain. i just am not to sure what to get for now. money is a real problem at the mo (student with hardly any income) however in a few months a start a work placment and will be paid handsomely...

    i have been considering a dual 1.25 g4 tower and a 17" formac lcd display, but after adding everything up it still seems a little expensive for me at this stage, although i could stump it up!

    i have now been thinking about somthing like the new 20" iMac, i think i could benefit from the bigger screen over the 17" but the overall machine wouldnt be as quick.. if i stuck say a gig of ram in do you think it would do me for the time being, and for my first mac? would it prove better than my current pc for photoshop tasks etc?

    what should i do? keep in mind money is an issue and i will probably be buying from an online store i know which lets my pay off the machine in 6 months intrest free...

    thanks
     
  2. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #2
    Can you give us a budget? It's much easier for people to advise if they know what you want to spend.

    edit: oh yeah, and also where do you live, it's no good be pointing out a greal deal in the UK if you live in the US (or the other way round).
     
  3. robins2001 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #3
    sorry, i am in the uk yeah...

    budget wise im not exactly certain because with me going for the 6 month thing i will spend upto £2000 if i am totally convinced that i would benefit by paying a little more...saying that, i want to spend as little as poss but i know i am looking at around £1800 anyway...

    what do u think would benefit me more, the larger screen of the 20" imac or the extra cpu of the dual g4? i guess thats what i need to work out
     
  4. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #4
    I want to say you should get the biggest, baddest Mac you can get. If it's a tool you will use to make a living you'll be doing yourself a favor in the long run. In the US you could write the computer off your taxes as a business expense but I don't know how those things work elsewhere.

    However, you still need the money for it up front, so here's my backup plan: Those older Macs you're using at school are still very capable and will run all the Adobe/Macromedia software you're likely to be using. They can be bought much cheaper than a new Mac and would make a good starter machine. Later, when you're rolling in cash, you can get a dual 15ghz G6 or whatever.
     
  5. robins2001 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #5
    hey man, thanks for the advice..

    just wanna point out that i dont see myself going into freelance straight after i finish my degree, its just too competitive aspesally for somone straight out of college.. so using the machine to make a living isnt really me at this stage, but as you said, once i start rolling in the dough i can spend the money on a ninja machine...

    i know a local graphics company that has a stack of macs ranging from old g4's to new ones that they are selling, do you think i should try n pick one up from them rather than buying one brand new?

    i know the older macs are capable of doing the stuff i need but then again, so is my pc... if there is one thing i want its that the mac must be better than the pc or its just not worth the switch imo...

    what do u think?
     
  6. neut macrumors 68000

    neut

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2001
    Location:
    here (for now)
    #6
    your pc is fine for now...hold out till you can afford a powerbook or a nice tower with dual displays...in the meantime throw a second display on your pc and call it good (maybe more ram too?).

    save you money man and gook luck with digital designing. :)


    peace.
     
  7. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #7
    CW Online will do you a dual 1.25GHz G4 PowerMac for £1,152 inc. VAT (education price, which I presume you would be entitled to being @ college), and you can pay this off over 6 months @ 0% interest. Get yourself a nice 19"/21" CRT for a couple hundred pounds and have a kick ass system that will be faster than your 1.6GHz P4 for apprx £1,350, good deal?

    PowerMac Link.

    edit: oh, and spend £50 on more RAM from crucial.com ;)
     
  8. robins2001 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #8
    hi, that actually sounds like my best solution at the mo...

    can anyone tell me how many dimm slots the dual 1.25 towers have? it comes with 256meg, i would like to buy another 512 & 256 to make a gig...

    this machine also doesnt come with a superdrive so i think i would stick a pioneer 106 in too,...

    thanks
     
  9. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #9
    If you are into graphics work, you'd probably want to stay away from the all-in-one format -- way too easy to outgrow the machine.

    With the PowerMac DP 1.25 G4 or the PowerMac SP 1.6 G5 -- you've got two/three more DIMM slots than the AIOs, spare drive bays, and PCI slots.

    When configured similarly the DP G4 edges out the SP G5 -- since the G4 has SW better tuned to it and the disk drive makes them equal, when the OS page swaps.

    Toss max memory into the G5, some recomplied SW, and the G5 could pull ahead a bit. If it had 8 DIMM slots -- I'd say go for it -- with 4 in th G5 1.6, it's a tossup (since you'd pobably end up with equal memory in both).
     
  10. robins2001 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #10
    ive seen benchmarks for photoshop and stuff and the dual g4 seems to be quite a bit better than the 1.6 g5...but especially in apps which can use both chips.. so im not really considering a single cpu g5 because a dual g4 1.25 will obviously be better for me
     
  11. James Craner macrumors 68000

    James Craner

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2002
    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    #11
    The advice other users have given you on the Duel G4 1.25 is excellent, but you may have another option.

    If your monitor on your present PC is still in good shape and suitable for graphics work you could afford a Duel Processor G5 ( the Duel 1.8 is a good deal), but I would wait a month or so, as Apple is expected to speed bump the current line of G5's.

    You could then buy a better monitor when you can afford it.
     
  12. robins2001 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #12
    my current monitor is actually quite good (iiyama vm pro 411) although it is only 17",,, i really wouldnt mind a 19" (atleast)

    i think i have decided to go for a crt over an lcd at the mo just for the higher resolution basically....

    the 19" mitsubishi 230 looks good

    as for waiting a month or so, i will see what happens at MWSF then make my decision, i can always buy a new system in 6 months if i feel its worth it, but i can see a dual 1.25 lasting me till i leave college easilly, which is april'05
     
  13. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #13
    That's just over a year--I certainly hope you can see it lasting that long! ;)
     
  14. manitoubalck macrumors 6502a

    manitoubalck

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #14
    If your into graphics, then linsten and listen up good.

    LCD's are no good for the kind of work you want.
    Apple LCD's are way over priced.
    Buy a little as possible from apple, eg small HDD, and min RAM
    Wait until after MacWorld.
    Get a good flat screen CRT >75Hz, >17".

    Also CRT's are great for gaming, but I'm guessing that's a minor consideration.

    If it were me at this exact minute I would have to buy the Dual 1.8G5, but hey like you I'm a poor Uni student, but me can dream.
     
  15. m4rc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2003
    Location:
    UK
    #15
    Don't forget the software! It's alright adding all this stuff up, but Photoshop and Illustrator will come in at a grand +, and thats without office, Lightwave etc.

    Sorry, didn't want to ruin the party, but kind of essential stuff.

    Marc
     
  16. Brundlefly macrumors member

    Brundlefly

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2003
    Location:
    Hamilton Ontario
    #16
    ugh

    I do freelance graphics work, and I do it all on a 17 inch powerbook 1 gig processor, with a gig of ram.

    Using Full Adobe CS Suite, and Macromedia MX 2004, I am never in the least processor bound.

    If you are wanting to get into heavy duty video work perhaps you might want to get into a g5, but for print and web design, the 20 inch Imac is going to be fine.

    Seriously, I just did 3, 350 meg billboards off this laptop, and it probably took less time than if I had used my P4 2.66...which btw has been collecting dust since I switched back to apple.
    :D
     
  17. Brundlefly macrumors member

    Brundlefly

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2003
    Location:
    Hamilton Ontario
    #17
    oh and...

    the apple flat displays are awesome for print, I have had no colour shifting on jobs I send out CMYK or pantone.

    If you can get yourself a decent printer they can send you profiles for their printer which will accurately represent colours off their in house system.

    The argument that LCD doesn't compare to CRT's, is a dead one, CRT's might be better, but in actuality, they have far too many factors that can mess them up that flat panels don't have. Temperature, warm up time, magnetic shifts etc....

    I have been through it, apple LCD's are fantastic, although you need to go digital with them to have the perfection in colour...which the G5 or the 20 inch both have......as does my 17.
     
  18. DavidFDM macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2002
    Location:
    Maine, USA
    #18
    Just wanted to say I picked up a 20" iMac for a new work@home machine. In December, I moved my design studio into an office but wanted the ability to work from home. My wife and I just had a baby so it's important to me to be flexible for them.

    I find the 20" iMac a really nice rig. I upped the hard drive to 160GB and the RAM to 768MB and couldn't be happier. I was on a serious budget with the newborn and all so I needed the best bang for the buck. I felt the 20" was it.

    Plus it doubles as a DVD theater for the bedroom.

    I seriously considered the dual 1.8 G5 as my new work computer and bring home my Quicksilver 867 G4 but I would have had to have purchased another monitor so in the end the cost exceeded my budget. Same with the powerbooks.

    Just mt 2¢.

    Happy New Year All.
     
  19. rt_brained macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2002
    Location:
    Creativille
    #19
    Even with years of experience under your belt, the 20" iMac loaded with RAM would be a workhorse. I moved to working on a Powerbook full time and haven't been panging for a cranked up G5 at all.

    As such, I've recently considered the 20" iMac for the home office and loading it with RAM.

    Not only do the best and fastest machines NOT make you a better designer, but there's very little you'll do on a daily basis that will push a 20" iMac to its limits or leave you begging for more.
     

Share This Page