Buying advice needed - details inside!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Epsilon67, Feb 8, 2009.

  1. Epsilon67 macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2009
    Hi everyone,

    Long time lurker, first time poster here. Anyways - down to business.

    Earlier this week I was burglarized (on my birthday too...) and got my iPod, MacBook Pro and 5 yr old dell laptop taken from me. Very annoying! Especially that they took my reserve computer that's crappy and will last all of 30 minutes without the charger they didn't steal... but I digress. So now I find myself computerless, and am seeking advice on what I should do - I want to purchase a 24" iMac.

    First, a little about myself and what my computing needs will be. I am currently a 5th year senior in Engineering, graduating this upcoming May. Upon graduation I'm moving in with my wonderful girlfriend who will be purchasing a MacBook Air (We are both fortunate enough and thankful to have jobs out of college in this economy :/ ). Additionally, both of us will have laptops assigned for work and to be used primarily for that - perhaps some internet browsing at home. Anyways, I think it would be nice to have a primary computer for our heavy duty needs, and an air for just browsing on the couch. For this reason the iMac would be great to have for the wireless drive it would provide.

    The main reason I'd like to get the 24" is for the bigger screen, though I'm also impressed by the specs. I would use it mainly for music, internet and office work, with a little light gaming mixed in (WoW). I feel like the iMac can easily handle this and more. Also, I would maybe like to get the 24" monitor from apple for more workspace if I find it's needed.

    Okay, with that covered, here are my questions:
    a) What computer should I get? MBP with external display, or iMac?
    Cost is a factor, which is why I'm leaning towards the iMac. Also, with 1 more semester left I am less worried about portability. With a MBA in the future I believe I'll be covered for any work portability. Also, with a job in the future the LCD display will be easily achievable - though that goes for the MBP too.

    b) When should I get said computer?
    I would really like one ASAP. It is a little frustrating to not have a computer right now. I know the MBPs were just updated, so it would be nice to be ahead of the curve on that. The iMacs are in for a redesign, but I'm not sure how long I'd like to wait around. It isn't imperative to get one, I can always use the library- it's just more of a convenience thing. Also, with what I do would it be better to wait for the new specs? How great of an increase will it be?

    Thank you so much in advance for your help. Also - if you'd like any more information let me know and I'll try to be timely about it.

  2. bozz2006 macrumors 68030


    Aug 24, 2007
    I would suggest waiting. I think that since the burglary happened so recently, your routine is still thrown way off. The longer you go without a computer, the easier and less frustrating it will be. I would try and wait for the imac to get refreshed. It shouldn't be too much longer. but, if you can't wait, the current imacs are nice too. I wouldn't expect a ton of improvement in the refresh. newer generation processor and ddr3 RAM, not much else. if you don't use your computer for intense (3D graphics, heavy video editing, etc.) stuff, you'll be fine with the current imac.

    But, if it were me, I'd try and wait until the refresh.
  3. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Yea, wait.

    How much portability is worth for you? I suggest 2.66GHz or 2.8GHz iMac + Macbook or crappy PC notebook (depends of your wallet).

    Sorry to hear that:(
  4. MacAgent84 macrumors member

    Jan 11, 2009
    If you are certain that you would use the iMac with the MacBook Air, and you would really spend time taking advantage of the large screen, I would definitely hold out one more month or two for the new iMac, and if nothing shows, I would purchase one of the new MacBook Pros. Either way you will be getting a lot of bang for your buck. But, if you really think you will utilise the 24" screen at home more than taking advantage of the portability of the MacBook Pro, then the iMac is a much better value all around, even if you don't get the updated version coming soon.
  5. nickcliborne macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2008
    Nut house
    Just yesterday I saw the previous model 24" iMac 2.4Ghz for 1299 on the refurb store. Keep an eye out I'm sure more will be poping up.
  6. Epsilon67 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2009
    Hi all,

    Thanks so much for the responses! I've definitely been watching the refurbs and some of them are quite cheap - which is quite tempting.

    However, I thought of another idea that I'd like some advice on. 2 options.

    A) Get a laptop now (MBP) and when I start work get a 24" ACD when price is less of a factor. If this happens my girlfriend and I will have the MBP as the main computing station, hooked up to the ACD. The MBA will be our floater, but I could still take the MBP around

    B) Get an iMac now. With this no ACD would be needed, and we would just get the MBA when we start working together.

    I've come up with some pro's and con's of each.

    +Get a computer now, as was recently redesigned. Get almost the most for my money.
    +Have portability when needed
    +Will have more screen space than the iMac when the ACD is purchased
    +Addl - Have a 32" LCD I can hook it up to now for watching LOST :)
    -More expensive! Cash is sort of a limiting factor right now. However, with financing I can pay it off very quickly when I start work in July - that would leave me with only 2 months of interest with the apple financing.

    +Better stats? I would like some clarification on this. Will the base 24" iMac outperform the base MBP?
    -Would wait to get one, and remain computerless for now.
    -Not as portable... but that may not be needed.

    A in the long run would be much more expensive - but with the financing and paying later I should be fine with my starting bonus.

    Those being laid out - how would a MBP perform attached to the ACD? Would it be a good setup? Also, is there a side by side compare of the iMac vs MBP? Which would better? Also - if I we ended up doing the 2x laptop + ACD (in the future, mind you) both of us could hook up to the ACD.

    Thanks so much for your help!
  7. petenice15 macrumors newbie

    Feb 9, 2009
    I think you should go with the MBP now and wait for the iMac. You'll be buying yourself some time and saving yourself from the dreaded buyers remorse.
  8. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    base 24" is more powerful than MBP. Get iMac when new ones are out and MBA with your GF.
  9. HazRutter macrumors regular


    Jan 2, 2009

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