iMac/MBP: help!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by dexterie, Nov 8, 2016.

  1. dexterie macrumors regular


    Sep 4, 2015
    BE, EU
    OK guys... I need some help. I really can't make up my mind...

    Ordered a new MacBook Pro 13" (i5 3.1; 16Gb; 512 SSD). I'm still waiting for it to be processed. The thing is that I keep having second thoughts. Should I keep this order and then use it with an external display (a good/great one will add around 600EUR more to the final cost) + external speakers and magic keyboard and mouse OR just go for the 27" iMac 5K (basically the prices are the same...)?

    Even though the MacBook Pro seems nice, I don't care much about mobility (I have a 7 Plus and an iPad...+ an old Windows laptop for emergencies or for when I go visit my parents lol). I need a new Mac to replace my mid-2010 iMac 24.5" (i3 3.06) and is giving me headaches (random freezes and sometimes quite sluggish...and won't decently read 4K or deal with heavier just can't handle it).

    On the other hand, I'm afraid to buy now an iMac and see it outdated in a month or so.

    Should I stay put and get the MacBook Pro OR just buy the iMac?
    If iMac, are there many differences between the GPU? (I will use it mostly for media consumption and some photo editing, some light video editing and text editor).
    Is the AMD Radeon R9 M380 that bad when compared with the M390 or the M395? Is it worth it to get the M395?
    In terms of HD: 2TB Fusion drive or SSD (256, max 512)?
    For the RAM, I'll get the 8Gb and add some later on (cheaper).

    Thank you a lot and sorry for the long post. I can't decide...
  2. bounou macrumors 6502


    Jun 6, 2012
    You will absolutely get more performance out of the iMac then you will out of the MBP, not even close really. If mobility is a non factor and you will just keep the MacBook connected all the time then it's really not a decision, get the iMac.

    If the iPad is all the mobile solution you need then you really should just get an iMac.

    I think ultimately you will always better served by having 2 dedicated devices rather then one jack of all trades, plugging and unplugging a laptop is a pain and you can end up not bothering out of sheer laziness.
  3. varian55zx macrumors 6502a


    May 10, 2012
    San Francisco
    The m380 can't even power the screen.

    Every animation lags and simple operations like using google maps are all but impossible. The experience is choppy and a disgrace.

    M390 at a minimum.
  4. dexterie thread starter macrumors regular


    Sep 4, 2015
    BE, EU
    What about the disk? Will I have decent speeds with the fusion 2TB? Or should I stick to the 256 SSD and then use an external disk if needed?

  5. IngerMan macrumors 65816


    Feb 21, 2011

    I get 600's Writes 1500 Reads with 2TB Fusion. The reads can fluctuate at times given using the Fusion process of transfer. I am not sure if the 256GB speeds are much better but I have seen the 512SSD and they are 1600+ Read and Writes. You will max out about 400 read and writes on a external USB SSD or Thunderbolt drive SSD.

    So in my opinion if 256 is not enough storage then 2TB is going to better option then 256 with external storage.

    If I could pick again I would go 512SSD M395 i3.3 Refurbished. Because 512GB is more than enough for me, if it was not enough storage and 2TB was I would stick with 2TB.

    It comes down to how much storage you need.
  6. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    It really boils down to the mobility factor, if you need mobility. The MBP is your machine you need. If not and the MBP is going to be sitting on your desk hooked up to an external monitor, keyboard etc. Well then the iMac is a better choice

    I would opt for the M395 version with 2TB fusion drive, if you can easily live within 256GB SSD, then go for that, otherwise the 2TB Fusion drive is a good product. I have the stock M395 model with the 2TB Fusion drive and I'm happy with it
  7. Firebrand macrumors regular

    Sep 13, 2016
    Very much true so. In the end, an iMac is way more comfortable than laptop + external monitor.

    The ‘M390’ iMac 27" 5K makes a reasonable compromise between performance & budget, IMHO.
    Maybe you can strike a bargain somewhere.

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