Buying advice

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by omicron, Jun 21, 2011.

  1. omicron macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    Hey guys! So I've decided to develop apps for the iOS platform which means I need to get Mac hardware! I'm paying attention to the buying tool on this site and I think most of the PCs are due for a refresh if not a refit to include Lion.

    Should I get a MacBook or a Mac mini? The Mac mini I'm thinking of because when programming a large screen really helps, in which case I can hook it up to my 22" monitor that I already have.

    I'm also thinking about getting a MacBook because when I leave for grad school I'm thinking about leaving my laptop at my parents house. It's fairly modern with a pentium dual core and the compter they were using before had a pentium 4 northwood... From like 2002.

    So which one do you think I should get? Thanks! :D
  2. soco macrumors 68030


    Dec 14, 2009
    Yardley, PA
    Why do you need Mac hardware to develop for iOS? I'm not being snarky. Genuinely curious.
  3. omicron thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
  4. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I would recommend either the 13 in Macbook Pro or the 11.6 in Macbook Air. The MBA option is for portability. It depends what you will be studying in grad school. If windows software is required to get through your degree, you might stick with the MBP as it has more storage and would have more than enough room if you decide you want to run Windows under parallels or vmware.

    BTW, I think you are right about the SDK. As many times as I've downloaded it, I've never seen an option for Windows or Linux. I suppose you could go the hackintosh route but if you can afford it, go for the MBP.
  5. omicron thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    Well I'm gonna shoot for a PhD in Social Psychology. I don't need power though, I have plenty of it because I just upgraded my desktop to a Core i5 and it has Windows 7. And it has 7TB of space. My all in one media center :)

    I detest the MacBook Air :p because it has a 1.8GHz Core 2 Duo and a small screen. I can't imagine how slow it would be. It would be somewhat nice to have speed when compiling programs, especially if I'm going to make games.

    I'll also consider the MBP :) I do like the aluminum design... I've heard about how graduate school stipend isn't a lot. So I'm hoping to shoot off a few programs/games to supplement the meager stipend income!
  6. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    Yes the MBA is a dawg. It's small and light but geekbenches slower than my 3 and a half year old white Macbook. Stick with the 13 in MBP then.
  7. AppleDApp macrumors 68020


    Jun 21, 2011
    Have a look at these benchmark seems like the MBA is a good system I would go for that because it has the faster SSD, Cloud is the future and you have 7tb in your media center rig so no lack of storage space.
  8. omicron thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    I can't stand small screens... I really can't. Plus the MBA doesn't have a DVD drive right? So what happens if you need to reinstall macos? The bigger screens do help tremendously when programming when you need lots of details. I suppose I could always hook it up to my monitor...
  9. KylePowers macrumors 68000


    Mar 5, 2011
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 3_1_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/528.18 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile/7E18 Safari/528.16)

    I got a 27in iMac for iOS development (among regular usage and engineering school work).

    I almost got a Mac Mini, but I didn't want to wait for the refresh... Plus it'll have an Intel IGP, meh. Same with a new MacBook Air.

    Some of the most popular apps though are made using AirPlay SDK and/or Dragonfire SDK on Windows, so you don't have to get a Mac :p
  10. omicron thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    Thinking about getting one....

    Hey all. I'm thinking about getting a Mac, don't know which one to choose. I won't consider the MacBook because it hasn't been updated in awhile... if it gets a refresh maybe I'll see but I'm shooting for devices that will most likely be refreshed soon. Maybe a macbook air... how is it? The only thing that might frustrate me is the screen... I want to know your experiences with this thing :)

    1. Is the screen bearable? I'm a sucker for big displays. I have a 22" on my desktop right now.

    2. Is the keyboard comfortable? I know on laptop keyboards they have to re-arrange the keys a bit because of the smaller space. Obviously the MBA is going to have less space for its keys.

    3. How is the build quality?

    4. Is it fast enough? (won't take 15 seconds just to load a page)

    I also have an iPad 2... would having this and the iPad make it a little redundant?

  11. omicron thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    I need your opinion!

    Hello all :)

    I have considered getting a mac... and I WAS waiting for a refresh. Lo and behold as I logged onto eBay ... I discovered I had a 10% off coupon from them. Up to 100$ off.

    That expires tomorrow.

    OF all the times.... I have the money on hand. But seeing as I could score a laptop for cheapz I want your advice :D

    I am considering getting a new MacBook white ... but this is my least desirable option. I can buy it for $850, but with all last gen parts .. when there might be a refresh soon.

    I could get a used last gen MacBook Pro, with a Core 2 Duo. Some guy is selling his with an AppleCare warranty through 2014! The price on it is $850.

    Or I could just get the Core i5 MacBook... I don't want to shell out too much money but I could get it for $1037.

    So... what do you think? :confused:
  12. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Personally, I'd get the core i5 model.

    If you want opinions on whats the best use of your money, then you should post how you plan on using the laptop. That is word processing, emails, surfing, or other more intensive tasks.

    Just doing surfing and light document creation, the C2D based laptops are fine.
  13. Dark Void macrumors 68030

    Dark Void

    Jun 1, 2011
    get something that fits your usage. if you need a more powerful cpu, get the current model. if the core 2 duo is enough and you prefer an nvidia gpu, get the 2010, etc.

    it seems like you are rushing though with the deal popping up, you should probably relax and really think it through instead of buying on impulse.
  14. omicron thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    Haha well it's not on impulse I was just considering my other options :X I think I'm settling for the core i5 MacBook pro. For less than $200 more I'll be getting some recent stuff. I think it uses less power than the core 2 duo.

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