iMac for operating a business?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by zachlegomaniac, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. zachlegomaniac macrumors 6502a


    Sep 20, 2008
    Hey MR,

    I started an estate management business a year ago, and it's going well. So far I've been operating off of my Spring '09 MacBook using MS Office, iPhoto, Quickbooks, etc. I've always had a laptop, and I am considering bringing this one into the field more with me this year. I know this is a relatively subjective question, but for those of you who own desktops, what tends to be the benefit? I imagine a larger screen would allow me to have multiple windows and spreadsheets open, and that the desktops tend to have a bit more power, but really don't have much experience with a desktop machine. Are they more conducive, in your opinions, to efficient billing, web designing, photoshop, and etc., or does it really not matter that much at all?

    Thank you.
  2. zenio macrumors 6502

    Feb 2, 2011
    Big mistake. One hardware issue & the entire computers out of commission.
  3. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Oct 22, 2007
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    I am always a little leary of hearing people whose sole business computer is a laptop. There is always a disruption to the business when it's sole system is off-line (broken/stolen/etc) but a laptop is much more vulnerable to failure or loss than a desktop system.

    If you are happy with the performance of the laptop, generally, you will likely be pleased with a Mac Mini or an iMac. Make sure that the desktop system is backed up nightly to a bootable backup on an external HD. If the main system is lost/broken/burnt/etc you can literally boot up from the back up HD on your laptop and bring up the the Desktop as it existed when the backup was created. All the emails, documents, apps, etc are right there. It's as if the Mini/iMac were still there working for you.

    I do my heavy work on a Mac Pro, and save the laptop for travel.... either away from the house, or just into the living room.

    Make sure you have an off-site backup too. There are too many things that can happen to both the desktop system and the external HDs.
  4. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    Unless you need the additional processing capability of a quad core iMac or a second computer you could just get a large external screen (24" or better), extended keyboard and mouse.

    When it comes to working with spreadsheets, surfing the internet or anything else requiring multiple windows to be open I far prefer my desktop. The only time I use my Macbook is when I need portability.

    The large screen is great for working with multiple windows. I can have spreadsheets side by side for inputting receipts and invoice and viewing my chart of accounts or a browser window open for reference when typing a letter.

    A high quality ergonomic keyboard and gaming mouse are much easier on the wrist. They are also quicker for work flow. I can move the mouse to the point I want far quicker. The gaming mice are also easier on the hands than standard mice and the extra buttons can be programmed to operate common commands. An ergonomic keyboard is easier on the wrists and feels more natural once you get used to it. While the 10 key speeds up number input drastically over the upper row of number keys.

    The only reason's I can see for buying a desktop rather than just the keyboard, mouse and monitor are as follows. You have a need for a second computer, you want it as a backup in case the Macbook goes in for repairs, or you want two large screens.
  5. cootersgarage6, Feb 9, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 25, 2011

    Nov 6, 2010
    It's great!

    Yeah, my stepdad owns a Pawn Shop that usees PC's... but he is opening 2-3 new gold shops in a couple weeks. He is is putting 3 iMacs in each of them. See, the iMacs make everything look better, because it's simple, clean looking, expensive looking, and only has ONE cord. And you are right, the desktops have a lot more power, and are meant to be used/last longer than laptops. You can also upgrade them, like the RAM and things like that a lot more, and easier. One you get the desktop, it will be awesome. Because then you can probably sell your MacBook, and just use an iPad. The iPad is great for typing on the web, all the apps, and things like that. Also has powerful word processing. But it will never replace a laptop if you use it for a lot more stuff.

    Now, for light work, that you are going to use just word emailing, and PDF's and things like that, then yes, like the other person stated, it would be fine with a Mac Mini. But then you have to have a monitor, buy a keyboard, buy a web-cam and mouse also.

    The iMac would be good for multi-tasking, lots of video, and lots of web. and also video chatting and things like that.

    The Mac Pro is GOOD for all of the above, plus high end gaming, lots of video editing, servers, and everything. It's the best Mac you can buy, and they stay up to date the longest.. and you can upgrade them the most also. 10 years later, it should JUST THEN start getting slow. They are meant to last forever. lol
  6. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    I'd say that's far more the case with a laptop. Far better to use a desktop for reliability.
  7. zachlegomaniac thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 20, 2008
    I have an external hard drive that I back up to automatically multiple times per day, so fear of data loss isn't so much of an issue. I also keep important files in my dropbox folder, etc. I really appreciate all of the input. I find that my MacBook just sits on my desktop 99% of the time anyway now that I am not taking any grad courses (and also for fear of damage).

    The selling the MB for an iPad and using that in conjunction with an iMac seems like a brilliant idea. It's amazing how resourceful I've been able to be with clients just having my iPhone on me. Someone can ask me the botanical name of a plant, and, if it has slipped my mind, I can grab it on the phone in seconds.

    Presentation isn't so much of an issue as customers rarely come to my office (I am usually on their estate). Just trying to get a feel for whether or not it was worth the expense, but it seems like it will increase my own productivity from what everyone has stated. Right now I'm coming off a great first year, but I still wear all the hats, so the best computing experience I can have is huge.
  8. MacFanUK macrumors 6502a


    Jul 29, 2009
    I would definately advice that you go with a desktop system. As much as anything else, from a practical point of view, it's just nice to sit down at your desk and your computer's already there instead of having to faff around with a laptop.
  9. Vantage Point macrumors 65816

    Mar 1, 2010
    New Jersey
    Laptop and a external monitor offers the best of all worlds - it's what I use
  10. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Reasons to switch to a desktop:

    1. Not likely to lose it and less chance of being stolen (and losing all your business data!) as you can also tie it down with a security cable.
    2. Easier to back up a system that is stationary.
    3. Ergonomics of a desktop system are much better -- reduced fatigue and chance of repetitive stress injuries.
    4. Desktop systems are more reliable.
    5. Desktop systems cost less for equivalent performance.

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