iMac or MBP for video and photo editing?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by nyguy4u, Jan 12, 2009.

  1. nyguy4u macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2008

    Now that the new MBP is out, I am going to be purchasing a new Mac in the next week or so.

    Here's my dilema, I am switching from a PC. In doing so, I will be switching from Photoshop to Aperature. And Premiere Pro to Final Cut Studio. I also use a DV cam with firewire to export to my current PC, and would like to continue using firewire to whatever Mac I decide to purchase.

    While portability would be nice, it's not a deal breaker.

    I'm torn if I should get the iMac or the new 17 MBP. Other than portability issues and screen size, is there any reason I should go with one over the other for video and photo editing?

    I'm open to all opinions!

    Thanks in advance.
  2. The Hammer macrumors regular

    Jun 19, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    The 17" MBP has an option for the Ant-glare matte display.
  3. EmperorDarius macrumors 6502a

    Jan 2, 2009
    You can work perfectly with the most powerful 15 inch macbook pro. Just get the best options available: 2.8GHz, 4GB RAM, 320 GB 7200 HDD.

    I know because I video/audio/photo edit myself.

    You can get the 17 inch macbook pro but it seems a waste of money for me.
  4. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    This is a pretty simple decision. Go with the 24" iMac. It has an 8-bit panel compared to the MBP's 6-bit TN panel.
  5. nyguy4u thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2008
    Hammer, that doesn't really bother me one way or another. Actually, I like the glossy display better anyways. But, that's just my opinion.

    Emperor, dropping down to a 15" will be tough. I have a 17" now, and I couldn't see myself going down a size.

    CaveMan, I have no idea what that is, or what the difference is lol

    Comparing specs between the iMac and 17" MBP, it seems that the iMac has the leading edge spec wise, am I correct on that? I also notice that while you are giving up portability, you are gaining more for your money, at least that's what it seems like to me. Please correct me if I am wrong. I know a TON of people that do video and photo editing on a MBP, but I rarely see it done on an iMac. That's why I want some advice if there is a reason for that other than the portability issue.
  6. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    The 24" iMac's panel can natively display 16 million colors. The laptops (and 20" iMac) can only display 260,000 colors (but tries to fake it with dithering). This will be apparent when you have gradients in your photos - they will be nice and smooth on the 24" display, but blocky on the 17" (or 20") display. The panel in the 24" (an H-IPS) is far superior to that of the others (a TN panel). If you do critical photo work, the 24" iMac is really the best way to go.
  7. nyguy4u thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2008
    So, in what I'm understanding, the 24" iMac seems to have better specs? The only real reason for the MBP is for it's portability, but if I sacrafice that, I have a more powerful machine with the 24" iMac?
  8. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Well, the new 17" MBP is built on the NVidia 9400M chipset, while the iMacs are built on Intel Santa Rosa. It is likely that the next iteration of the iMacs will also have the 9400M, so if you can wait then we can re-evaluate it for you. The 9400M allows OpenCL - not sure if the current iMac video cards will. The technology for OpenCL was introduced in the NVidia 8800 series, so the old MBP will not benefit from it.
  9. Santabean2000 macrumors 68000


    Nov 20, 2007
    Not sure what you mean, I use Ps CS4 at work and the OpenCL definitely kicks in on my 20" iMac. I thought any computer with a dedicated graphics card would benefit from this technology:confused:

    With re to the OP, unless you need the portability - go the desktop, better value for money and better specs all 'round.
  10. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Are you sure you're not referring to OpenGL? OpenCL comes with Snow Leopard.

Share This Page