$2500 what to buy? video and design

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by beachdawg, Jan 27, 2009.

  1. beachdawg macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2009
    #1
    Here's where we need advice: My husband and I both need a new computer. However buying two at once is not financially easy. It's hard enough to buy ONE apple computer. He is a videographer and I am a graphic designer. Both of our current apple computers are 7 years old and making it impossible to do any freelance work at home. We bought them when we started college and have been using them ever since. I have a 400mhz original G4 Titanium laptop (yeah its a dinosaur...and chugs even in Photoshop CS) and my husband has a G4 tower 933 mhz. Even the internet is slow on these things...it's gotten really bad! At our jobs we both work on macpro systems loaded up and are quite spoiled, but are realistic that we cannot afford 7 thousand dollar systems. We currently have $2500 to spend on a new computer which we will share temporarily (and it will not be easy to do...I can see us fighting already over this) till we can save up for me a macbook pro... (that or we are going to bite the bullet and pay cash for one and charge the other). Anyway, he will not use a laptop, so macbook pro is out for him. Considering the $2500 would it be better to wait till the new imacs are released, go ahead and get the 24inch iMac out now, or get the bottom of the line mac pro listed on mac mall's site(it's only a 4 core, 2.8 quad processor with the ATI radeon card). It's listing at a little over 2grand. Is the imac better since it has the better graphics card or is the outdated mac pro still way better? I know the macpro is expandable, but what's the difference in buying a new imac in three years or spending over a thousand or so dollars to upgrade the processor, ram, graphics card, etc during that time. For now we would put 4 gigs of ram on either. Obviously the imac would be maxed out altho I have read on here you can put 6 gigs on it.

    And also, if the macpro is the better choice of the two, are there any IPS panel monitors out there that are under $500? From what I have found they are all still pretty high for a decent 24 inch monitor. As much as we would love to have a 30inch apple cinema display like we use at work, it's just not very feasible financially.


    Any advice would be grateful!

    nutshell...
    top of the line, maxed out imac or outdated bottom of the line macpro?
     
  2. beachdawg thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 27, 2009
    #2
    oh yeah...

    I forgot to mention we will be running Adobe CS4 photoshop, indesign and illustrator as well as final cut pro and pro tools. I know a new macpro is better, but when compared to a brand new top of the line imac, is the outdated macpro still better for these programs?
     
  3. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #3
    You keep saying outdated. How is it outdated if there is nothing out that is better?

    Both the iMac and the Mac Pro are woefully old. Getting either will last you for many years to come, but if you want "fresh", the iMac will be getting updated first, and then the Mac Pro.
     
  4. twig16 macrumors newbie

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    Jan 25, 2009
  5. theMaccer macrumors 6502a

    theMaccer

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    SoCal
    #5
    I would say buy a refurb unibody MBP and an external monitor, this way when you have enough money for a mac pro you can still use the monitor and you get your MBP.
     
  6. leighonigar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 5, 2007
    #6
    Since absolutely anything new would be about 5 times faster than what you have why not get a Macbook and a basic iMac, or two iMacs, or an iMac and a Mac mini? Or some combination of the above. If you put enough RAM in these things (2-4GB +) they will be fine. Though, I must admit, I suspect video would be slow on the mini.
     
  7. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #7
    They do work in CS4 and Final Cut Studio... I don't think that the Intel GMA950 will cut it for that.
     
  8. leighonigar macrumors 6502a

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    May 5, 2007
    #8
    Point taken. I haven't used CS4... but that does use GPU accel, yes? CS3 works ok on my Mac mini, and it's running single channel RAM. It does bog down a little with multi-gb files, and thinking about it the stock hard disk is stupidly small.

    Despite that It would still be a good deal faster than any G4. There's a much bigger difference between a 5 year old computer and a new one than their is between any of the current iMacs. I was just pointing out that for their budget they could get a new white macbook with a proper GPU and, say, the 20" 2.66GHz iMac and upgrade RAM/ external screens as and when. It's the second way.
     
  9. beachdawg thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 27, 2009
    #9
    when i say outdated...

    when I say "outdated" macpro, I just mean that they are not selling that particular one on the apple site anymore. Here is the one I was referring to though. It's through MacMall. So since it's only 4 core, that's what I meant by outdated since all the one's that are selling now from Apple are 8 core. Is there a big difference between 4 and 8 core? and what does that do really?

    http://www.macmall.com/macmall/shop...2600+XT+&+16x+SuperDrive-Mac+Pro&dpno=7371990
     
  10. beachdawg thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 27, 2009
    #10
    what makes a thread show up in the main forum of this section? the only way I'm finding this is by doing a search for my screen name? sorry guys, new to the forum. thanks for your help.

    oh...nevermind...I see I've been moved to another thread...been searching in the macpro thread.
     
  11. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #11
    Looks like it's just about at the top.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/forumdisplay.php?f=54
     
  12. beachdawg thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 27, 2009
    #12
    yeah, I see...i realized it got moved to another thread. =)

    so about the graphics cards. Can anybody tell me if the Nvidia makes a huge difference compared to the ATI radeon?
     
  13. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #13
    While the 8800 GT is a better card, the drivers suck, and so the 3870 (and even the HD 2600 XT) is better for non-gaming needs.
     
  14. HBOC macrumors 68020

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    SLC
    #14
    i am in school for web design right now and in my class yesterday, i was running bridge cs4, PS CS4, ILL CS4, Mac Word, and Aperture 2 with no slow up what so ever. It was kinda sad, the HP's in the lab (i hate when i have a class in the PC labs) were slowing way down when they had Bridge CS3 and PS CS3.
     
  15. DarthTreydor macrumors 6502

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    May 25, 2007
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    Richmond, VA
    #15
    if you can wait a couple months, i'd hold out for the updated mac pros, then you can either buy new or get the current one as a refurb at a discount.
     

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