Hi all. I'm a design student of two years...should be wrapping up my final few classes in the next semester or two. I've already been talking to professors and other pros who suggest that I should go all out when purchasing a computer. We use some badass Mac Pros at school. However, I don't have $2400 on hand to buy just the tower. I've been looking at the iMacs, and one of my professors told me to get the top of the line, 27 inch, fastest i7 processor with the biggest and best hard drive offering and maxed out RAM. Obviously, that sounds cool and all...but I've built that machine several times in the "Build Your iMac" section of the Apple site. More and more, I'm looking at a laptop, or the high end 21 inch iMac. Downside to all of this...is that even with the extra grant money, after classes are paid for and the few supplies I need...like read/write CDs, flash drives and sketchpads are bought...I only have about $1200. And because of some...odd circumstances earlier in life...I never had a job until I I was 19, and I have family members who are slowly ruining my credit through some bs. My questions are as follows... Do I really need the top of the line 27 inch iMac? Would I be better off taking a loan out to buy it, or wait and stockpile the cash? Would it be a smarter investment to buy a used Mac Pro, and customizing and upgrading as I need? Is a laptop better? If so, which one? Is the 21 inch iMac capable of handling graphic intensive applications without overheating and cooking itself? Solid state drive, traditional hard drive, or a hybrid? Is anything under the i7 capable of handling graphic intensive programs like Illustrator, Sketchbook Designer...etc. ?