Mac buying advice for my brother

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by J. J., Jul 26, 2014.

  1. J. J. macrumors regular

    J. J.

    Oct 15, 2012
    Hi. My younger brother currently owns a MacBook Pro 13" (Mid 2010). He uses it mostly for photo and video editing as he has a YouTube channel, and his hard drive is filled up with heavy applications like Photoshop and Screenflow.

    With Mavericks his computer is almost unusable; it is very slow and unresponsive, it takes minutes to start up and it often runs out of memory, so he would like to buy a new Mac.

    He would like not to spend over ~1400$ and he doesn't want another MacBook Pro because he says he needs a larger screen and he doesn't care much about mobility. Since the Mac Pro costs too much and he doesn't want a MacBook, basically he can only choose between a Mac Mini and an iMac.

    Which model do you think is best for him? And should he wait until October for new models to be released before buying one? Thank you.
  2. thetechfixer macrumors 6502


    Apr 21, 2010
    I would go with the higher end Mac Mini, the $799 model, and then max out the RAM at 16GB or 8GB, 16GB would be better for video editing. Also Purchase an SSD, I recommend Samsung Drives such as the 840 EVO which is what I use or the 840 Pro. May be a better idea to wait for the update.

    If he wants an iMac, the $1349 configuration should be plenty but I would not go with it since It does not come with an SSD standard and upgrading to one would go over his budget.
  3. mripadmini macrumors regular


    Aug 24, 2013
    mac mini $799

    Upgrades i would get

    -2.6GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
    -16GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x8GB


    put the remaining money into getting a decent monitor, keyboard and mouse.
  4. mad3inch1na macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2013
    For $1400, there really aren't iMacs worth buying. They have a large up front premium, so if you cannot afford the upgrades, they are really mediocre computers.

    The high end Mac Mini uses literally the exact same components as the 2012 MacBook Pro. If he buys a Mac Mini and upgrades it to the quality of the MBP, it will cost at least $1200. At that price level he should probably just get a 2012 15" rMBP used. You can find them on eBay for $1400, and for even less if you don't mind scratches. You can also find them on craigslist for around $1200.

    It will be exactly the same computer spec-wise, come with a beautiful screen, it will be mobile, and it has a camera/mic for Skype/facetime. The Mac Mini is basically all the components of the rMBP thrown into a box. The rMBP is my highest recommendation.

    Your second option is to get a used 4.1 cMP for around $500. You can buy a GPU, RAM, HDD, SSD, and all your externals. You can get a really nice setup, comparable to a $2500 iMac, for about $1300. A $300 GPU, $100 for RAM, $60 HDD, $140 SSD, $120 monitor, and an $80 keyboard/mouse. You could also upgrade the CPU at some point for around $200. Just something to think about. It would be a project, but if you put in the time and research it could be really worth it. The cost estimates are weighted pretty heavily on the GPU, so you could find a decent graphics card for about $150-$200 if you wanted more RAM or a nicer CPU.

  5. J. J. thread starter macrumors regular

    J. J.

    Oct 15, 2012
    Thank you very much for your answers. I showed my brother your advices and he think he'll go for this:


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