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macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 13, 2012
I am a a designer for over a year and my main working base is powerful combo of two 27" iMacs. Next step I'm planning is to get something more portable for remote work and that's where my dilemma starts. I am thinking of MacBook Pro with retina or iPad 4. I know iPad is just a tablet but with today's apps development and adobe great photoshop touch, ideas and few more creative apps you could really start design on iPad and finish off with finish touches on iMac. I also like touch based factor which speeds things up. Unless there are some things I am not aware of.

What is your experience guys?


macrumors 65816
Dec 7, 2001
Charleston, SC
I tend to use the iPad as a supplement to my MacBook Pro. I use it for sketching ideas and occasionally some research. But I don't think the iPad is at a place where it can replace most professional design work done on a laptop quite yet.

I'd suggest a small MBP for portability. But I also admit I'm fairly conservative about changing up my workflow.

I don't even know if there are viable page layout or vector creation programs for the iPad - or if they are compatible with Adobe products.

macrumors 6502
Aug 29, 2011
While they are almost there, I wouldn't say it's a replacement quite yet. There are apps that really make a push for it like iDraw, but most of the high quality refined apps that are better suited to tablets (Adobe Ideas, Procreate, Sketchbook Pro, Paper) are still in the sketchbook / ideas category. That being said I've been keeping a very close eye on Adobe's project Mighty and Napolean tools. They're really doing some cool stuff that could really link the mobile experience with your desktop workflow (particularly if you're on Creative Cloud). We're right on the cusp of something I think.


macrumors 6502a
Jul 6, 2011
CA Central Coast
I agree. The iPad is convenience, but isn't - as yet - to the point of the MBP for graphics work - particularly if you want to work with Adobe products. You can get some Adobe mini-programs for the iPad, but once you are used to using the full programs, the annoyance factor goes through the roof with the "simplified" apps. So many things you can't do. Plus, you would likely need an external keyboard and mouse for fine work. At that point, the iPad's portability is challenged.

I use my MBP 13 (late 2011) to actually run my graphics programs (Creative Suite 6) and it does very well. I have an external monitor (20 inch) for actual desktop-style work, but portability is outstanding with the MBP.


macrumors 68040
Oct 12, 2005
I have a Macbook Pro and take client sample on my iPod touch and apple TV, carrying around an iPod Touch with keynote presentations is far easier and I'm finding better to present.

Still I do have an iPad, it's great but I hardly use it for work anymore :|


macrumors 6502
Oct 1, 2008
I find waiting until i get home the ideal...but im in full time work so different ballgame.


macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2012
Austin, TX
My wife has an iPad and I use it occasionally (primarily for comics, games, and Netflix) but I find it too limiting anytime I try to do any sort of actual work on it.

I'd probably get a 11" Macbook Air if you're looking for something super portable to concept on.


macrumors 6502
Dec 3, 2009
Go with the MBP. I don't know if it's because I learned on a computer, but I still find it easier to use Photoshop on my computer than on the tablets.

I find if I need to do something detailed, the iPad's touch doesn't cut it (a good stylus like Adonit Jot Pro helps a lot though). But even when I use the Galaxy Note 10.1 with the stylus+digitizer built into the tablet, I still find it easier to do Photoshop work with my MBP.

I'd go with a MBP or MBA. If you really want the touch abilities of a tablet, perhaps go for a graphics tablet along with the computer? Some of them are very reasonably priced (though the cheap ones may or may not be sufficient for your work).
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