first time buying a mac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by weipim, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. weipim macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2008
    Hi everyone. Im new to this forum and my first post is asking which mac to buy.

    I am a pc user for many years, somehow after get into college, with the increase of accessibility I start to like macs a lot. the convenience of OS X really impresses me.
    I recently got a hand of gold enough to buy some new gear. However it is hard to decide which product to pick for an add-on to my entire working system.

    I was using a lenovo t60 for about two years, but i would like to squeeze out the last second from it.
    So my plan was like this:
    There is the 17" MBP at bestbuy for a little bit more than 2000 dollars, which is with in my budget. Although I heard ugly stuff about this product over the internet.
    My second choice would be the new MBP just came out. The built quality seems outstanding and it offers a fairly priced performance. the downside is it only has 15.4" and a low resolution. (sorry, so used to 1440x1050 on my t60 for 14.1 inches. hope didn't offend anyone)

    On a daily basis, it should serve me for web-browsing, school project(office, datastudio and other professional software). I also planning on connecting a line 6 pod with it and could play my e-guitar sometimes. Photoshop is a must for me, since outdoor photography is one of my passion. I forgot to mention that I have another lcd monitor samsung 193+ which is a pva 19" screen I loved a lot.

    I know I have a lot of compromises for a limited budget, here's another one, since I already have an individual screen, an IMAC would probably not be the right choice for me, then buying a mbp might be my only choice , an expensive one!

    right now I'm really confused which computer should I pick and this thing keeps bothering me for last couple days. Can anyone give me some advice? thanks
  2. johto macrumors 6502


    Jan 15, 2008
    If you need portability and have the cash, i would go with MBP + extra screen. If you dont need portability, i would get 24" imac (and maybe a second screen too) :D
  3. richard.mac macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2007
    51.50024, -0.12662
    the 17" MBP is pretty big! if youre fine with carrying it around then go for it. it also has a choice of matte if you really like it. you also have the choice of getting 1920x1200.

    the new 15" MBP will kill your Lenovo in terms of specs and performance. the Lenovo had a 15" screen and the resolution of the MBP is only 12% less and being 16:10 this is understandable. if you will like the widescreen then the resolution wont be a problem for you.

    you also said you were thinking of getting an iMac? forget about that you already have a screen as you can connect that to the iMac and have way more pixels than just with a MBP… do you need portability? if so then go for the MBP.
  4. The Hammer macrumors 6502

    The Hammer

    Jun 19, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
  5. weipim thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2008
    thanks guys for replying in such short instance, this forum is the best muhahaha

    to johto:
    that what i first thought about, however yesterday i went to apple store and looked at their screens, i dunno why but it seems different than my school's imac 24. it looks more like a tn pannel which i can't stand for the colors, the school's one are just flawless...

    yeah, people also reminds me about the size issue. the thing is, i would like to have good screen and also some sort of portability. i used to have a vaio 15.4 which sucked ass. I loved the 17 from mac store, it's really good. but again i'm also amazed by the new built quality and 4 finger gestures...

    Hammer: well the thing is, the 17" they are selling now on bestbuy only cots 2099 usd which is in my budget, i think this is pretty much the maximum i would willing to put on a computer...
  6. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
  7. Winni macrumors 68040


    Oct 15, 2008
    There's always a new product coming soon, so waiting does not always make sense. However, I think waiting for the next version of the 17" MacBook Pro could make sense - my bet is that it will have one of the first mobile Intel Quad Core CPUs. And when you work a lot with RAWs, you will want that additional horse power.


    I'd go with the 17" MacBook (with Apple Care), an external keyboard and a mouse. Unless you're really into the design, don't buy the Apple keyboard and Mighty Mouse, though - Logitech and Microsoft sell much better input devices for that money.

    Max out the notebook's RAM (currently 4 GB) and hard disk (320 GB) and buy at least one external hard disk for backup purposes (meaning: Time Machine).

    The size of the notebook is not an issue, at least not for me. It fits in a backpack and you don't need to carry it around with you when you are shooting pictures. But when you want to edit your photos while you're on the road, you will appreciate the larger screen. And at home, the 17" display makes a good primary display in a setup with that other screen of yours.

    PhotoShop is a powerful tool, but when it comes to digital photography, Aperture is even more important to me. MUCH more important, actually. Others prefer Lightroom, which is also a fine product, but Aperture is more compatible with me and the way I think and work. I could do without PhotoShop, but I wouldn't want to do without Aperture. For me, Aperture is the killer application for OS X. (Okay, Scrivener is another one, but that's for writing and might not interest you that much.) Download the Aperture trial and see for yourself.

    If you go with Aperture, it will also make sense to buy a second external hard disk to use exclusively as a file vault for Aperture in addition to the hard disk for the regular Time Machine backup. Hard disks are cheap. Your photos and other data are not.

    iMac: Well, you -can- connect an additional display to an iMac. I have used an additional 20" Cinema Display with my iMac Core Duo - until I "upgraded" the iMac to a Mac Pro. Just get the Mini-DVI-DVI (or Mini-DVI-VGA) Adapter from Apple and you're good to go.

    But if you only want to use -one- computer, make sure it is a notebook and not a desktop. A few years ago, things were different, but nowadays all common computer needs can be serviced by one notebook.
  8. weipim thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2008
    WOW, Thanks Winnie!

    You just opened my vision !
    I guess the disadvantage of being a pc user for too long is that the ignorance of extra software from os X. If you wouldn't told me, I will still struggle with photoshop until the last day of my life haha. just few minutes ago, i was looking on insanelymac and had a thought of building up a pc like i used to do while putting os X into it. somehow I think a 17" mbp will fits my needs way better than anything else. Also wondering if applecare is the solution to its mediocre building quality?
    the 17" model i could afford is: MB166LL/A, is this a good reliable choice?
    thanks again

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