laptop or desktop?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jetjaguar, Dec 11, 2016.

  1. jetjaguar macrumors 68030

    jetjaguar

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    #1
    which do you prefer ?? I'm trying to decide .. I have my iPhone and iPad Pro for mobile use.
     
  2. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    #2
    All depends on what you want to do and whether you value the larger screen of a desktop (though you can add to a laptop).

    For doing artwork and items that take real advantage of screen real estate and possibly GPU, the desktop is the right choice. If just overall work and play and portability, laptops can't be beat.

    I use both.
     
  3. Specwar762 macrumors newbie

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    Dec 5, 2016
    #3
    I'm a laptop guy for anything but PC gaming, but I wouldn't use a Mac for that anyway. If you do hardcore video or picture editing, you could get much more power for much less money with a desktop, but you can't sit on the couch and watch football with it either.
     
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G4

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    #4
    Since you already have an iPad, I say: desktop.

    Which do I prefer? Hard to say.
    Nice to have a MacBook to carry around, but I still wouldn't want to use it in place of my desktop (a 2012 Mac Mini with a 27" display)...
     
  5. cruisin macrumors 6502a

    cruisin

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    #5
    Generally if you don't need the portability of a laptop you should get a desktop. You get a bigger screen and more performance then a equivalently priced laptop. A laptop don't deal with heat well, so if you need high performance for extended times a desktop will deal with heat more efficiently and be quieter.

    Do you like to or need to move around as you work? Do you need to meet with clients and work with them? Can you work from a desk and use the iPad for everything else or do you need to bring a Mac with you?
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #6
    My preference has no impact on your purchasing decisions, budget and preference may very well be different.

    Well, the easiest question is, do you need something for travel, or mobility? What are you planning on using it for. Do you already own a desktop or laptop? Could you keep using the existing one, and buy the other, i.e., if you have a laptop, buy a desktop and use the desktop as your main machine and the older laptop for your mobile needs.
     
  7. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #7
    What works for me is "the best of both worlds" - a laptop with an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse at my desk.
     
  8. Zazoh macrumors 6502a

    Zazoh

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    #8
    Agree with @Tomorrow, I love the portability of the laptop, even in the house, I can use on the sofa, in the kitchen, in the office and when I need the real-estate or a consistent light of a monitor, then I plug into external monitor.
     
  9. jetjaguar thread starter macrumors 68030

    jetjaguar

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    #9
    I guess I just think a high end iMac would be faster than my loaded mbp .. I always feel that stressing a laptop is a bad idea and the fans go full blast .. I originally wanted a 5k monitor or two to go with my laptop but fear using it on clamshell mode would heat it up too much
     
  10. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

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    #10
    If you don't need portability then get a desktop if you do need portability you have no choice. It's a pretty simple decision.
     
  11. cmanbrazil macrumors regular

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    Feb 3, 2010
    #11
    In the Mac ecosystem, if I didn't need a laptop, I would buy an iMac. You get way more for the money, and if you have a 27in, you can upgrade the ram up to 64 gb, and its not as expensive as when it is installed by Apple.
     
  12. UnluckyXIII macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Personally I've always been more of a Desktop person, my usual Desktop sessions last for 7-10 hours and I don't think I would enjoy the laptop experience for that type/length of work. I do however own a MBP 17" and although not really a "portable laptop" by most peoples standards its served me fine for when I've needed to take my work with me and proved useful when on trips away. This year I plan to add a new 15" tMBP to replace the aging 17" and hook it up to a 4k display when back at my desk. I'll still be keeping my Desktop computer though as its a beast spec-wise vs a laptop and gives me the best of both worlds (macOS and Windows).

    XIII
     
  13. dwig macrumors 6502

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    #13
    In the real world it boils down to how you use your computer; what software you run and the nature of your "work" environment.

    In general, I prefer notebooks up and until I turn them on. At that point I prefer a desktop. When I'm not using my computer, either doing non-computer things or carrying the computer from one place to another, I prefer that it be a notebook so that it consumes little space and/or is easy to carry. Once I turn it on to use it, I prefer a desktop's large monitor, separate keyboard, and mouse instead of clumsy trackpad. With the software I run, I also prefer to have the processor power, large quantity of RAM, and massive harddrives (plural!) that are easy to achieve with a desktop.

    Its true that you can attach external monitors, mice, keyboards and multiple external HDDs to a notebook, but few notebooks, no MacBook of any sort, has the guts (processor, RAM, GPU, ...) to match a good desktop. Those few Windows and Linux notebooks that come close are heavy and have only rather modest battery life and serve a market that Apple doesn't try to service.
     
  14. jaduff46 macrumors regular

    jaduff46

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    #14
    The kids all have MBPs of various vintages which they like for the portability.

    The combination of an iMac 27" (2010) and an iPad Air 2 had served me well, even without cellular on the iPad.

    I like the screen real estate of the iMac and the horsepower, and the iPad allows me to connect using wifi or personal wifi hotspot on my iPhone.
     
  15. Billy Underhill macrumors newbie

    Billy Underhill

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    #15
    I was in the same situation as you. I have an iPhone 6S, iPad Pro 9.7", and an old Macbook Pro (2009). I decided on getting a refurbished 27" iMac because I do a lot of photo editing and the Retina 5K display is one of the best available. I also needed more disk space. So I was able to get a 2TB hard drive and saved a lot of money compared to getting a Macbook Pro with similar specs.
     
  16. tod macrumors regular

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    #16
    My thoughts exactly. In the last 16 years, I purchased 5 Macbooks or Powerbooks. I owned them all for less than a month. I love the idea of not being chained to a desk, but I will never be comfortable working on a laptop.

    I suggest getting the desktop and discarding the terrible keyboard Apple includes. Comfortable keyboards are ugly. If you're going to use a desktop, there is no need to contort your hands to fit an unnatural, designy rectangle. Your hands are not rectangles. I highly recommend the Microsoft Natural 4000 Ergonomic Keyboard. Ugly name, weird looking thing, but my hands will never let me go back.
     
  17. Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030

    Ulenspiegel

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    #17
    It depends on your pattern of use.
    Personally, I prefer Laptops. Meets my needs and portability is important for me (iOS ≠ OS X/MacOS).
     
  18. jetjaguar thread starter macrumors 68030

    jetjaguar

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    #18
    I think I'm going to keep the mbp and pick up dual 5k LG monitors when they become available .. I guess it will be the best of best worlds
     
  19. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #19
    I worked for years with that arrangement (external monitor) and it served me well.

    Be sure to validate that your MPB can drive two 5k monitors
     
  20. jetjaguar thread starter macrumors 68030

    jetjaguar

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    #20
    The 2016 15" can drive two 5k monitors at 60hz.

    Did you notice any slowdown when using a mbp with dual monitors in clamshell? Performance hit? The mbp getting very hot or the fans spinning loud
     
  21. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #21
    I only drove a single monitor and it was on a 2012 rMBP. I didn't notice any issues but then I didn't have a huge monitor (an Apple Cinema Display)
     
  22. 62tele macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 11, 2010
    #22
    I have been weighing this decision myself and I think I'm going with an 21.5" iMac, non-retina, 16gb, 256 or 512 SSD.

    I really like the new MBP (regardless of the naysayers) but I prefer the extra real estate of the 21.5" plus it's more bang for the buck. I mostly use my Mac for Logic Pro X recording (guitars, etc) and rarely get beyond 12 to 16 tracks. It's just more important than portability since I already have an iPad.
    My eyes must not be very discerning because the FHD version looks great to me even when comparing it side by side with Retina.
    I am also hoping that Apple drops the price of the MacBook 12 at some point. Their current price points for the MacBook vs the MacBook Pro make no sense whatsoever.
    I thought of waiting for the new iMacs but I'm sure that there will be a massive price increase like with the MBP and Skylake is not that great of an advance over Broadwell from what I can gather.
     
  23. Bart Kela macrumors 6502a

    Bart Kela

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    #23
    I have both (desktop & notebook) and I prefer the desktop. Larger screen, better keyboard, better audio, etc.).

    That said, I can't haul my 24" monitor and AC-only Mac desktop onto an airplane, nor can I store my ~600GB iTunes library on my MacBook Air's 128GB SSD drive.

    It's really dependent on how you would use the device, something you fail to mention in your original inquiry.

    Anyhow, think it out for yourself, after all, we're not the ones going to be using this, it's your usage case.

    Good luck.
     

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