2011 21" iMac vs 2012 13" Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dammagededdie, Jul 3, 2012.

  1. dammagededdie macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #1
    I am debating between keeping my current 21" 2.5GHz iMac or selling it to buy the 2012 13" 2.9 GHz Macbook Pro, just looking for opinions on what I should do. The issue I have is my iMac is in an upstairs office and is rarely used as we have a windows laptop downstairs that is more accessible. Just looking for opinions from people. I am a relative Novice to the Apple brand, so anything helps! :) Thanks!
     
  2. Cubeeless macrumors regular

    Cubeeless

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    Apr 6, 2012
  3. Mizzou02RS macrumors member

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    Sep 13, 2005
  4. user418 macrumors 6502a

    user418

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    #4
    I understand the accessibility issue. Just curious as to what you were using the iMac for? That 8.5" loss of screen real estate is a big change.
     
  5. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #5
    As of right now I am just using it for basic stuff. I'd eventually like to use it for photo editing and videos and stuff. Is that going to be terrible on the 13" screen? I'd go for the 15" but I'm not sure it's in the cards to afford. Plus doesn't the 13" I listed here have better specs and more power than the cheaper 15"?
     
  6. user418 macrumors 6502a

    user418

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    #6
    15" is quad core vs dual core and has better graphics than the 13". Price difference of $300. RAM is cheap now and you could probably add 4GB to the 15" for about $60 later if needed. In my opinion (everybody has one) the 15" with the larger screen would be better for photo editing and videos. Granted the 13" has a faster processor but based on your stated usage I'd prefer the advantage of the other features I mentioned. As far as HD, I guarantee you'll be shopping for an SSD in the near future regardless of which MBP you buy.

    Just a matter or personal choice as both are excellent machines and either would meet and or exceed your needs.


    15-inch: 2.3 GHz

    2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7
    Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz
    4GB 1600MHz memory
    500GB 5400-rpm hard drive1
    Intel HD Graphics 4000
    NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 512MB of GDDR5 memory
    Built-in battery (7 hours)2
    In Stock
    Free Shipping
    $1,799.00

    13-inch: 2.9 GHz

    2.9GHz dual-core Intel Core i7
    Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    750GB 5400-rpm hard drive1
    Intel HD Graphics 4000
    Built-in battery (7 hours)2
    In Stock
    Free Shipping
    $1,499.00
     
  7. InlawBiker macrumors 6502

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    Apr 6, 2007
    #7
    It's between a big screen and portability. They're both important considerations. So I picked both.

    I almost got the iMac, but I instead bought a "late 2011" MBP and I use it in my office with a 23" 1080p LCD monitor. They don't cost too much these days. When I want to bring it downstairs or on the go ... I do!
     
  8. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #8
    Thank you user for your opinion. I know quad core is better than dual, but is there much of a difference? And would there be a noticeable difference in the graphics? Also, I know we both mentioned the 13" is faster but again, would it be noticeable?

    ----------

    That was my other thing too, I wa going to get an external monitor to use with this and my windows laptop. Is a Mac easy to hook up to an LCD monitor?
     
  9. user418 macrumors 6502a

    user418

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    #9

    Computers are not just the CPU. You may not notice much of a difference. Depends on what programs you'll be running and how deeply you plan on getting into photo editing and videos. The 13" has "shared video memory", meaning that the CPU and the GPU battle it out for access to a common pool of RAM, with a corresponding performance hit. The 15" has dedicated VRAM and heftier GPUs, meaning a faster graphics response.

    The monitor should solve the screen real estate issue when you're at home. You'll lose that when you're on the go. Here again, portability appears to important for you. Connection is no problem. All you'll need is a single cable with the right monitor.

    I've owned both the 13" and 15" and the one pound weight difference was not a big deal for me.
     
  10. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #10
    So ignoring the screen sizes, out of the 13", 15", and the iMac have, which is the better machine for the price? And even better machine overall?
     
  11. user418 macrumors 6502a

    user418

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    #11
    In a perfect world I'd sell the Windows machine, keep the late model iMac, and buy the 15" as they both have a better screen resolution than the 13". You can get a refurb 15" for $1359 with a full one year warranty on the Apple website or possibly cheaper as places like Amazon clear our for the 2012 units. The 2011 is a great machine and with an SSD it's blazing fast. You won't notice the approximately 10% or so difference in speed from the 13". I know people want the latest and greatest but the 2011 15" is a solid performer and nothing to scoff at. Its really a toss up, but as you can tell I am biased toward the 15" model.

    You might ask the poster InLawBiker below why he chose the 15" over the iMac and the 13". Like you he's also using a monitor but yet still chose the late 2011 15" model. At the end of the day it's all a matter of personal preference. One thing for sure is you can't go wrong with a Mac.

    I know you said ignore screen size but my only suggestion at this point would be to pay a visit to Best Buy and check out the 13" and 15". Open up iPhoto on both and see which one you would prefer doing your photo editing and video viewing on. Then hold them both and see if that one pound difference is really that noticeable to you. Good luck on whatever you decide.
     
  12. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #12
    Is there a particular reason you chose the 15" over the 13"? I'm still debating here fellas as the 13" is cheaper and an external monitor would help.
     
  13. InlawBiker macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #13
    Yes for games and for video processing. The 15" has a dedicated GPU which makes a huge difference. For processing video, a quad core is nice to have but not essential. It was a luxury choice to be honest, if you don't need those things I think the 13" is perfect.
     
  14. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #14
    Yeah, I noticed the 13" is about the only one without dedicated GPU. I wouldn't be doing any gaming, just mainly everyday stuff and hopefully some photo and video editing eventually. Problem is, the 15" has a processor that isn't as fast, not even as fast as the iMac I have, which I believe has dedicate video. Sounds like I might be better off just keeping the iMac.
     
  15. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #15
    How big of a difference will the dedicated GPU make? And what exactly does the dedicated GPU do?
     
  16. dammagededdie thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 3, 2012
    #16
    I'd be using the computer for basic things like Internet, word processing, watching movies, slight photo editing, and little video editing. There wouldn't be heavy video editing. I'm a noob, so I'm just hoping you guys an clarify if the dedicated GPU would be necessary for these tasks?
     

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