Help! rMBP or iMac?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by lawsonks28, Jul 17, 2012.

  1. lawsonks28 macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2012
    Hey everyone!

    First time poster but long time reader. I currently have an HP laptop which has seemed to be on its last limb for years now, just recently lost the ability to run my video editing software so I have been using Avid Studio on my iPad but am missing the effects, color corections, ect. So I've decided to finally fully convert from PC world to the Apple world and am fairly excited to do so. However I'm torn between a few things, get a retina MBP, current iMac, or wait for possible iMac release in September/October (can't wait any longer past that). So I figured this was the perfect time to turn to you guys, I'm going to list below what I use it for and am very open to thoughts, feedback, or what people did who were in a similar position and were they happy?

    *Video editing- I edit as a hobby, know quite a bit and like to make my videos look professional but am not doing anything over 10min. Just fun videos from GoPro cameras so editing in 1080p.

    *Novice programming- I have just recently started to learn programming language to one day develop an app for fun. Nothing groundbreaking this is just another new hobby.

    *Household computer- I will really be the only one using the computer (my wife uses her work computer) but I want to make sure it seemlessly hooks up to other devices, iPad, iPhone, ATV2, movies from harddrive, music ect. (movies and music can be stored externally)

    *I really like all devices to work very well together without much effort. My wife and I each have an iPhone and new iPad and we have an ATV2 in the family room to play movies from our movie library.

    *On the fence for portability- I don't need to edit things or use it away from home, iPhone/iPad does everything I need while traveling. However, I'm not sure if I would be bothered by needing to go to the office to do things on an iMac vs edit videos on the couch in front of the TV. (looking for feedback for others who had the same delima)

    Price isn't an issue but I do not want to spend money needlessly. For example if I'm not going to notice a difference between 2.6 GHz and 2.7 GHz ($250 upgrade) then I would save my money. But if upgrade in RAM or storage seems logical and worth it I will.

    I hope this helps others and sparks a good discussion, thanks in advance for feedback!

    Off topic question (just need answer no discussion): Is having a 2TB time capsule any different than having a 2TB harddrive hooked up to a wireless router?
  2. will waters macrumors regular

    Jul 19, 2011
    Great Britain
    I would go with the iMac, ideally wait until the new ones come out...

    Or you could get a Mac Mini and a MBA for portability

    However if i was in your position i would go with the iMac, you won't be let down...

  3. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2008
    Silicon Valley
    I would skip on the CPU upgrade. I would skip on the RAM (unless it's the MBPr in which case you should decide whether 8GB is enough). Judging from your OP, 8GB sounds like plenty. The internal drive is where I'd spend my money on, be it an SSD or a bigger SSD (in the case of the MBPr).

    If you're looking to spend over $2,000, I highly suggest waiting for the new Mac Pros. Personally, I am not buying another Mac unless it's the Mac Pro. It lasts 2-3 times longer than any other Mac. It's the best bang for your buck. If you aren't looking to spend that kind of money, then I suggest downgrading to a 13" or 15" MBP. Your usage doesn't sound too taxing and less than what I do on my 13" MBP Late 2011 stock base model.

    Failing the Mac Pro, the iMac is the next best option. You spend way less for the performance. If portability is on the fence, chances are you don't need it. In the example of me, I wasn't on the fence because I'm a student and I work in all sorts of places like coffee shops, lecture halls, apartment, friend's places, home, etc. so I need it.
  4. lawsonks28 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2012
    Do you think it is worth waiting until Sept/Oct for possible new iMac or just bite the bullet and get one now?
  5. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    I'm one for working at a desk, so I'd hate to give up my iMac. The most basic model would do for your needs (but I'd suggest the 27" if you have the room -- it's great for video/photo editing).

    A lot of people are talking about the iPad/iMac combination around here as the best solution for portability plus a good home system. I'd go that route myself (although probably substituting an 11" MBA for the iPad) except I need lots of "horsepower" on the road.

    The new iMacs, if they come this fall, will offer USB3.0 and will be slightly faster, but not something you would notice without a stopwatch. The cost will undoubtedly be the same. The only other advantage to waiting is that if you are willing to buy a refurbished computer the prices of the previous generation drop, so you would save probably $150-$200 on the current model.
  6. lawsonks28 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2012
  7. Sam2lucky13 macrumors 6502


    May 26, 2011
    Id go with a base retina and get a wireless keyboard, trackpad, and thunderbolt display.

    now you have a desktop and a kick ass laptop to take on the go when need be.
  8. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    I'd wait and see if the iMacs get an upgrade, but if not, I'd seriously consider the retina MB pro. That display is gorgeous, and the higher resolution makes it feel bigger than 15 inch. I think it'd be perfect for video editing.

    Our 2009 iMac is still in good working condition, and could last us another year or two, at least, but our next Mac is definitely going to be a retina model, no question.
  9. Dagless macrumors Core


    Jan 18, 2005
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    I'd wait for the iMac upgrade. Though I'm not entirely sure it's necessary for most people. I use my machine an awful lot and push it with work and games, but my 27" iMac rarely ever splutters. It's a powerful machine.
  10. bf2008 macrumors member

    May 28, 2008
    Join the club of confused apple desktop users! From your options, iMac is better, since rMBP is overkill. I still believe that the experience you get form a nice desktop monitor is much better than from a laptop, even if it's retina.

    The problem is that the iMac is not a great proposition actually. You could go Mac Mini plus monitor route but the mac mini is quite outdated at the moment. Also, you could go MBA 13 plus monitor.
  11. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    If you are looking at all the possible alternatives, you need to also look at the cost (unless you have money to burn, and then just buy one of everything!).

    Assuming no particular requirements that would push one beyond the basic models, that Applecare is purchased, that when the Thunderbolt Display is purchased, the wireless keyboard and mouse are purchased as well, and ignoring any possible discounts (such as refurbished or Educational Store) and sales taxes:

    21.5" iMac + iPad = $1966
    27" iMac + iPad = $2466
    mini + TBD + iPad = $2483
    13" MBA + TBD = $2585
    21.5" iMac + 11" MBA = $2616
    27" iMac + 11" MBA = $3116
    mini + TBD + 11" MBA = $3133
    rMBP + TBD = $3685

    Frankly, if I were happy with just an iPad for portability, the most sensible choice is to pair it with an iMac of either size.

    And regarding the unanswered question at the end of the OP, TimeMachine doesn't work with arbitrary network attached drives, so the answer is most likely "yes". But if you are just using it for additional storage (rather than backup) the answer would be "no".
  12. martinm0 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2010
    I'd recommend the iMac as well. I was thrilled when the MBPs went quad core and I picked up the first gen MBP 15" i7. It was a great machine, but I found I didn't need all that horsepower in a laptop, and when I did put it to full use doing video encodes, it would get hot fast (and stay hot). I then tried the Mac Mini quad core when that came out, and found that to also run much hotter and louder than I really wanted.

    In the end, I went base 2.5 i5 iMac 21", added 8GB RAM (12GB total) and have a last gen 13" MBA and iPad 2. As Talmy stated, I just can't give up working at a desk. And the iMac cost me $999 refurbed (vs the $1700 for the MBP, and $2k plus for rMBP).

    Food for thought.
  13. lawsonks28 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2012
    This has helped alot and appreciate the thoughts guys, I think I'm going to be getting an iMac in a few weeks just to wait long enough to see if new iMac comes out with ML.

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