iMac 24", MacBook or MacBook Pro 15"?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by JoelHodder, Apr 9, 2009.

  1. JoelHodder macrumors member

    Apr 2, 2009
    I'm looking to buy my first Mac within the next few months (or after Snow Leopard is released), but i'm not sure which one to buy!

    I currently have an old Acer Aspire 5051 laptop which runs quite smoothly with XP, but after 2 years of bearing with Windows i've decided its time for a Mac.

    Now, I can save about £1000-£1500ish but I don't know what to get. I already have a 24" Full HD Dell monitor on my desk and I would use the Mac for:

    Heavy internet use,
    Microsoft Office (either via VMWare or the Mac version),
    The occasional Photoshop,
    The odd video edit for YouTube,
    Storing 20ish GB of photos,
    Using Google SketchUp,
    A (quite) large iTunes library with some HD videos
    Occasionally gaming on Sims (Sims 3 by the time I get the Mac), COD4, COD6 (when it comes out) and other games made this year (nothing Crysis- like, so major graphics aren't a big worry but i'd want it to be capable of running COD4 in high settings at at least 50fps). All of these games would be run via XP on BootCamp or on the Mac version of the game, not VMWare.

    My options are (based on the current models (the slashes (/) show where i'm not sure!)):

    24" iMac, 4gb DDR3 RAM, 2.66ghz/2.93ghz C2D, 640gb/1tb HDD and GT120/GT130.

    13.3" Aluminium MacBook, 2gb DDR3 RAM (i'd upgrade myself when necessary), 2.0ghz/2.4ghz C2D, 160gb HDD (again, i'd upgrade myself when necessary) and the 9400m. However, I think i'd like the illuminated keyboard so the 2.4ghz model would probably be the one i'd go for.

    or finally the 15" MacBok Pro but I can't really be bothered to write out those specs (just quite a 'low' end MacBook Pro!).

    I'm going into my local 6th form/college in September but although its a 'nice' school I don't think I would want to take a MacBook in, let alone a MacBook Pro, and I already have a laptop which i wouldn't worry about taking in and it could easily handle word processing and SketchUp (i'm taking product design so these are the main things i'd use at school (the school computers are shocking so i'd probably need to take in a laptop)).

    I also don't like having loads of wires coming out of my laptop when its sat on my desk as a desktop (i.e. headphones, a mouse, printer etc.). Pathetic I know, but I do like as clean a desk as possible!

    So, if you've been kind enough to read this far you're probably thinking that its leaning towards the iMac, but I LOVE the designs of the Apple portables even more so than the design of the iMac (which I still LOVE!).

    Any advice or if you could just say what you'd go for, i'd be VERY grateful. Thanks for reading!;):D
  2. Cboss macrumors 6502

    Dec 11, 2008
    Sorry to throw another option at you, but the mac mini might be a good choice since you already have a large monitor. It is basically a Macbook without the screen so would have similar performance. However, I'm not sure a mini or a Macbook would give you the gaming you desire.

    If it was me I would get an iMac. If you don't mind spending a little more consider upgrading the 2.93 Ghz model to the ATI Radeon HD 4850. I think this would give you the best bang for your buck, and still keep you happy in a few years.
  3. JoelHodder thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 2, 2009
    Thanks for the reply. Urm I dunno why but I just wouldn't want a Mac Mini because it seems far harder to upgrade, and for the price it is I really worry about the other things you could get on a PC! With the iMac its different because your getting a lot more for your money, but a Mac Mini just seems outright ridiculously expensive!!:p

    I like the netbooky feel of the MacBook aswell though! And the MacBooks are by no means slow!?!:confused:

    Thanks for the recommendation, I hadn't considered the ATI 4850.
  4. AAPLaday Guest


    Aug 6, 2008
    Manchester UK
    Hard one to call as its personal preference. Both are great machines and either would suit you well. Since you dont want to take it to college then you might as well go for the imac. Unless you really want to be able to surf the net whilst on the sofa :D
  5. JoelHodder thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 2, 2009
    I spose i'm fine surfing the net on the sofa with my current laptop, its just that immense design of the MacBook is like::eek:! :p

    Anyway, thanks for your opinion.
  6. jtgotsjets macrumors 6502


    May 20, 2004
    Lawrence, KS
    Go for the iMac. The MacBooks are sexy--I'll give you that--but there's just not a lot of point to having two portable computers, especially if you're not even going to be porting one of them.
    With the iMac you just get so much more for your money- it doesn't make sense for you to get anything else.

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