iMac 21.5 vs Macbook Pro?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by lostforwords, Sep 22, 2010.

  1. lostforwords macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2010
    Hey guys, first post. :D
    I've searched around for a topic like this but I haven't found any similar to mine. Hope this is okay.

    I'm looking to purchase my very first Apple computer. I've wanted one since the first Macbook Pro but silly me thought I'd be better getting a Windows machine. I instead got a £800 laptop, thinking it would be a good investment, but the motherboard went after a year and I ended up getting a £700 one for free on home insurance. I've had it for a couple of years, but it's gotten sooo slow and I've had to completely reset it 4 times. It's really on its last leg. The fan is also unbelievably loud and I just can't take anymore Windows PCs.

    My parents are paying for this, and they really don't have the money to spend £1000 (my mum has a £500 gift card she bought last year, which is the only reason they are paying for it), so I'm looking at the base models. I'll be using it for The Sims 3, which isn't really an intense game, but I tend to run things like WLM and Firefox when I'm playing. My current laptop (2.0ghz Core 2 Duo) was fine with that but as I've said, it's gotten incredibly slow, which is why I'm a little scared of the 2.4ghz of the MBP. It's not that much of an improvement, or is it?

    I'm also planning on moving out sometime next year, so I'd probably use it more if it was a laptop so I could sit around on the sofa or on the bed like I do now, but will the MBP be fine for what I'm using it for? I would sacrifice portability for a way better machine. I want it to last a good while, more than a year at least. :p

    What do you think I should get, the iMac 21.5" or the Macbook Pro 13"? Thank you in advance! <3
  2. zhenya macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2005
    It sounds like you utilize the portability of your current laptop, so I suspect you might be disappointed to become tied to a desk. For your use I would not be terribly concerned that the processor is not much faster than your old computer. In general, it is not the processor that makes a computer 'feel' fast or slow. It is primarily the RAM and hard disk speed, combined with the condition of the OS. Your old computer would feel fast again were you to do a clean Windows install.
  3. tpg macrumors regular

    Mar 19, 2010
    Processor-wise the imac is about 1.5x faster than the macbook pro. This probably wouldn't be an issue for you.

    However, the graphics card in the imac (HD 4670) is twice as fast as that in the 13" macbook pro (GT 320m), and so would be more suited for gaming if that is an issue.

    Overall, the iMac is definitely the way to go if you want the most 'bang for your buck', and like the larger screen. If portability is more of a concern, go with the macbook pro, or even the macbook, as the price & specs are very similar.

    Processor comparison chart:
    Graphics card comparison chart:
  4. lostforwords thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2010
    Yeah, I probably would. I wouldn't mind so much right now as I'm living with my parents, but when I get a house with my boyfriend, I'd rather be sitting with him than stuck to one spot while on the computer. :p

    Ohhh okay. I don't really know much about computers. Would it be faster than my current laptop, anyway?
    And I did a recent clean install but it's still slow. Faster than it was, but not as near as fast as when I bought it. It'll last me until I get a Mac at Christmas or next year. :D

    Thanks for helping! Definitely thinking about the MBP over the iMac. As long as it's okay for what I'm using it for, anyway.

    @tpg - I forgot about the graphics card! I'm not really into gaming, The Sims 3 is about as far as I go with that, though. :p And yeah, I do like the larger screen.. it's so pretty. Thank you for all the helpful information! I did a geekbench of my current system and it came to 918, so whatever I buy will at least be an upgrade. :p

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