Buying for graphic design 13" or 15"?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Coweyeboy, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. Coweyeboy macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2012
    Stuck on which MacBook pro is best suited for me to purchase... My 4 options right now is the 13" m313ll, m314ll or 15" m318ll, m322ll?
    My main uses for it will be for Photoshop and Illustrator for my silkscreening business
    Other uses will be heavy iPhoto and iMovie
    Can video encoding and heavy CS5 master uses be handled with the 13"? Or do I jump to at least the 318?
    Because if the 13" can handle my demands without lag, I'm cool with that... Thanks everyone!
  2. Ohrstrom macrumors 6502


    Mar 18, 2012
    Do you intend to use an external screen? I would imagine otherwise that a 13" would be a bit small for someone whos main use is graphical design. The only issue otherwise would be RAM I think, and either laptop can have its ram upgraded to a suitable amount (8-16GB)
  3. nudoru macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2012
    Hardware wise, either would work. I think the biggest issue is screen real estate. I take a look at the hires 15" with antiglare. It'll be better for colors (so i've read) and give you a lot of room to design in. Also upgrade RAM to at least 8gb, or even 16 now that it's around $100.
  4. azentropy macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2002
    I don't think you could go wrong with either...

    The MBP 13" is plenty fast enough for what you want to do although the 15" would definitely be faster and if it is going to be your only display is preferable. For the price savings of getting the entry 13" over the entry 15" you could also max out the memory to 16gb (~$120) and get a really good 24" IPS external display (~$300 - like the Dell U2412m) and even add a SSD which might be a better overall value to you than just a 15" MBP.
  5. derickdub macrumors 6502

    Mar 13, 2011
    If you're going to be using the MBP's screen I'd get the 15" with the antiglare screen. You get much better color reproduction which is important for graphic design IMO.
  6. iDuel macrumors 6502a


    Jul 20, 2011
    15" with an anti-glare screen would be the most ideal for graphical design. You'll probably be better off with the extra screen real estate in the long run.
  7. lamboman macrumors 6502

    Aug 13, 2011
    Definitely the 15" rather than the 13". The 13" is a great machine, no doubt, but the quad-core processors available with the 15" will likely speed things up very nicely over the 13". Also, the resolution of the 13" is way too low for the work that you propose to do.

    15" high-res anti-glare along with a nice IPS monitor from the likes of HP or Dell (the anti-glare coatings on some of the Dell monitors might not help though). It's a big buy, but if you're doing this professionally you don't really have much choice IMO.
  8. SDAVE macrumors 68040


    Jun 16, 2007
    15" or 17", Antiglare.

    15" here...a graphic designer. Get the high res if you're getting the 15".

    Also another option would be 13" MBP + 20" iMac.
  9. No1nfoProvided macrumors 6502

    Dec 1, 2009
    Question: Why do people believe antiglare screens have better color reproduction than glossy screens?

    I would think that glossy screens would have more accurate color reproduction, because there is no film to distort the light from being reflected back at you as there are with screens with antiglare coating. This film should distort the light coming from the screen as well (even if it is minimal/indistinguishable)
  10. Coweyeboy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2012
    Everyone BIG Ups for the great input... One thing I will mention, is that I DO have an external monitor, for color reproduction, I use Pantone Huey pro, I also have an external keyboard and mouse, and use a wacom intuos 5...
    So maybe now, would u still recommend the MBP 15" or is the 13" plenty enough? Even for the upcoming adobe CS6?
  11. Mojo1 macrumors 65816

    Jul 26, 2011
    Glossy displays tend to oversaturate images; I find matte displays easier to work with and I don't have to deal with annoying reflections. I use the excellent $35 Power Support anti-glare film on my 13" MBP.

    No portable Mac display is ideal for critical color work. If the OP wants maximum portability I recommend the 13" over the 15" (I've owned both models). Whichever MBP is selected the OP should budget for an external display suitable for graphic design/image editing. I prefer NEC CCFL backlit displays; the company has thirty displays starting at $300 MSRP. Discounts on some of the better displays can be found at B&H Photo and other online retailers.

    I use a 24" NEC display with my 13" MBP. It's the recently discontinued 2490 WUXi2; I got it at B&H Photo for $550. It's MSRP was $899. I use Aperture, Nikon Capture NX2 and Photoshop. Works like a charm. When I hit the road I just disconnect the MBP and I have all my data with me. Just be sure to invest in an external drive for backups. If your data is really important to you add an online data backup plan. I like Crashplan: it has the lowest cost, it's easy to setup and use and Crashplan doesn't throttle upload speeds like Carbonite.
  12. mordecailee macrumors newbie

    Feb 28, 2011
    As a designer I faced the same decision a while back. I purchased the 13" and ultimately returned it. Hooking it up my external display looked awful and there didn't seem to be any work around. The text was terribly fuzzy.

    I went with a 27" iMac and I couldn't be happier. If you need a laptop, don't let me talk you out of one. But... I use a Wacom tablet constantly and it seemed like a waste of money to buy a powerful laptop hooked to an external display/speakers/tablet/etc... Hardly portable. The 13" was also not powerful enough for what I do. It wasn't terrible but the speed difference between the 13" and my iMac is huge for me. (I also installed 12gb ram, btw) Illustrator (vector) will be fine, but depending on your photoshop use I would spend the extra coin for more power. Get the ram too. I got mine from newegg for like 30 bucks.

    As for the display, (glass/antiglare) don't sweat it. I wracked my brain trying out both screens in the Apple store and now that I have the glass on the iMac it doesn't matter at all. I know this sounds like sacrilege to some, but I do a lot of print work and I've never had an issue. You are a silk-screener, I am sure you have pantone books.
  13. nudoru macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2012
    Color aside, I'm firmly in the anti-glare camp. I used a 15" glossy for a while, and unless I was in a very dark room, I could see a lot of reflection in dark colors. Was a pain trying to discern detail in dark areas for me. And if you're mobile, it's not always possible to control glare.

    +1 for the external monitor

    For the CS6 suite (everything except Premiere and Afx) I think any recent computer will be fine. Just feed it RAM and a quick HD or SSD.
  14. chilly7 macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2012
    According to my knowladge Apple Antiglare does not use film,so the sreen is not distorted,because they remove glass from the sreen, right?
  15. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502


    Dec 8, 2011
    Melbourne, Australia
    Yes, the anti-glare is not really a film, but a machine manufactured material which is much much better than those anti-glare screen protectors that you can get for your iPhone.

    And I'm surprised that no one has mentioned that one of the biggest differences for getting the 15-inch over the 13-inch is that the 15-inch models has a discreet graphics chip while the 13-inch only has an integrated one.

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