Freshman art student looking at macs...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Bojingle, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. Bojingle macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2009
    So, as the title suggests, I'm going to be a freshman in college and my major is art. Computer animation to be precise. From what I understand, a MacBook Pro would be my best choice. I've been looking at the 15-inch: 2.66GHz, but of course, not being exactly computer savvy doesn't help when looking over the specs. There's always a chance that I may change my major, but it would still be within the art field and I work with Photoshop and the like as it is.

    Also, I came across a person that commented that "They're [macs] not good for graphic programs like Photoshop and they're generally not graphically oriented. They're also bad for PC games too, which I also use. Macs are more for people who use computers for business matters."

    Now I'm pretty sure I've heard the exact opposite in nearly all cases. Is this person just full of it?

    Anyway... Any recommendations, explanations as to why you recommend what you do or anything else is appreciated. c: Thanks!

    EDIT: If I did consider an external monitor, what should I look for? Would I have to buy more cords? Are those pricey?
  2. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    The person telling you this *****, may have been full of it, or s/he was sarcastic. But s/he was true about PC games, as they are normally written for Windows, so they won't run under Mac OS X. But there is always Boot Camp.
    Beware that an Apple laptop is not made primarily for gaming though.

    The MBP with 2,66 GHz is a good choice as there is an integrated graphics card in there, which will will tremendously help with Photoshop in future releases, when the trend continues to integrated the GPU more into the computing experience besides games.
  3. razyorv macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    Macs are awesome for graphics. I have a 2.16GHz 3rd Gen Black MacBook and I do graphics work every day on it. Adobe CS3 runs superbly even on this 2007 machine with 2GB of RAM and integrated graphics. The 1440x900 resolution might be a tad small though, so you might want an external monitor to go with that.
  4. Bojingle thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2009
    Well, the nice thing about the gaming bit is that I've never been a big computer gamer :3 I'm happy with my Wii, DS, 360, Ps2, etc.
  5. 007bond macrumors 6502a


    Dec 12, 2008
    DFW, Texas
    look for a dell or a samsung. apples monitors are pricey and not worth it unless you have the cash. also, you will need to buy a mini-display port to dvi adapter which costs about $19
  6. Bojingle thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2009
    Only $19? Well that's not bad at all. I was afraid it may have been one of those ridiculously expensive cords that run about $100 or so.
  7. mgridgaway macrumors 6502


    Feb 25, 2006
    Nope, just a display that costs $700:p

    At any rate, the 2.66 should suit you just fine. Whatever you go with, make sure it has a DEDICATED or DISCRETE (same thing, different words) graphics card, and not a INTEGRATED card, despite what a previous poster suggested. Integrated graphics are rubbish for professional work, and you should avoid unless you're a casual computer user (i.e no games, no FCP, just internet, some photoshop, etc)

    The cheapest MBP that has a discrete graphics card is the 2.66 MBP. Anything less and you'll run into problems (ie wishing it would work faster) should you really want to do professional work (and why wouldn't you, since you'll one day be making a living off it).
  8. gavin83209 macrumors regular

    May 24, 2009
    Be careful which adaptors you buy. Most displays use DVI, but some like the 30" Cinema Display use dual-link DVI, which requires a more expensive adaptor to run at the proper resolution. You will need to check your display to be sure that you have the right connection.

    Single DVI supports resolutions up to 1920x1200, and dual DVI supports up to 2560x1600.
  9. rjsmith18 macrumors member


    Aug 17, 2008
    For computer graphics the larger the screen the better. If you can afford it, go with the 17 inch Macbook Pro. I do computer graphics and I find a large difference between the two sizes. If you can't afford that, then go with the upgraded macbook pro with the 512 graphics card. RAM and graphics capabilities are important. It takes a powerful computer to run Adobe.
  10. PhixionFilms macrumors 6502

    Dec 6, 2008
    Deployed atm
  11. DeusInvictus7 macrumors 68020

    Aug 13, 2008
    Kitchener, Ontario
    This is pretty much a useless statement as of June 8th. lol
  12. Aljovido macrumors member

    Mar 30, 2008
    I'm also an art student, going into my senior year this fall, so let me tell you my experience.

    Before college, I totally thought I would need a laptop, so I invested in a 2.0GHz Core Duo Macbook. However, you'll soon realize that any class you need a computer in, will have the computers provided. That said, my Macbook stayed put, on my desk. Because of this, I ended up buying a monitor (Dell 2407WFP) some WD MyBooks, and a mouse and keyboard... It is actually decent at photoshop, flash, illustrator, even light final cut pro work, but it couldn't even compare to the iMacs and Macbook Pros of friends (Who were able to get comparable work done much faster than I).

    Regardless, I regret not buying an iMac (with decent graphics card) right from the start. You simply get more bang for your buck, and any class where a computer is required, a computer will be provided. If you are completely against the idea of a desktop, don't get anything less than a Macbook Pro (with a decent graphics card). Just be aware that if you do purchase a laptop, you'll soon find the need for huge amounts of screen real estate, a mouse, a tablet, usb hubs, external drives, etc...

    Oh, and to whomever told you Macs weren't good for graphics, ask them why art schools are filled to the brim with iMac and Mac Pro labs. I have yet to find an art professor of mine who doesn't use a Mac for their work!
  13. Bojingle thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2009
    Haha, I'm hoping to get something a little cheaper than $700. But thanks for clearing up the difference between dedicated/discrete and integrated. c: That's helpful.

    Thanks c: I'll keep that in mind, too.

    I'd love to get the 17 inch, but it's a little more painful than the 15 inch, lol. I was planning on getting an external monitor anyhoo.

    Yeah, I'm not even considering the Macbook at all. Though the desktop idea sounds good, I've a habit for taking the laptop just about everywhere I go for some reason or another, so I'd want portability.

    c: I was taking an external monitor into consideration already. As well as a new Intuos4 tablet. They look mighty sleek, and I'm currently stuck with a 5 year old itty bitty wacom. I think I'm due for an upgrade in that aspect, lol.

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