Mac buying dilemma! Need advice please?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Fallinangel, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. Fallinangel macrumors regular


    Dec 21, 2005

    I'm currently using a 3.06 GHz iMac with 4 gigs of RAM and a NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GS. It's still serving me well for my every day needs, such as email, web browsing, music listening, video watching (>720p), Photoshop editing, scanning, music ripping, etc..
    However, heavy work loads under Photoshop (>300 dpi), Illustrator and InDesign push the machine to its limits.
    Modo, AutoCAD, Maya and other 3D-oriented apps could easily devour even more power.
    Currently, I'm not using CAD- and other 3D-apps that much, apart from Sketchup :D and Maya, but once I start my architecture classes in March, I'm going to need something far more powerful, and even portable.

    I'm probably going to sell my current mac. Then, I'll purchase a MacBook Pro or even another iMac!?

    The iMac would easily be my preference, since it usually sports a similar or even better performance than the MacBook Pro for less money, a bigger display, and more voluptuous HDD.

    However, I absolutely need some degree of portability to do some serious work when I'm travelling or spending my holidays at my parents'.
    I'm talking here about 3 to 4 months a year.
    The MacBook Pro does also feature the anti glare screen that I'm really fond of, but does it/is it going to have enough juice?

    Any suggestions? The iMac isn't prone to be upgraded very soon, however rumor has it that the MacBook Pro line will get a refresh in the foreseeable future!?

    I'm willing to spend 2,500 Euros.
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Well, if you need portability, then MBP is your only choice. It's possible that MBPs will get option for quad core which would be great for your needs.
  3. chrismacguy macrumors 68000

    Feb 13, 2009
    United Kingdom
    Yeah, a 15"/17" Quad MBP would be perfect for what you want (portability, great screen + you can always hook up an external cinema display/ whatever when your not away)
  4. Vantage Point, Jan 16, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2011

    Vantage Point macrumors 65816

    Mar 1, 2010
    New Jersey
    Current iMacs are faster than current MBP's, but current MBP's can be faster than your 3.06 C2D iMac. I have a base model 15" i5 MBP which replaced my 2009 27" 3.06 C2D iMac and in many types of photo editing work it is noticeably faster. 8GB of RAM that I added also helps a lot as software like Photoshop CS5 is 64-bit and can use more RAM instead of a slower hard drive as scratch.

    Take a look at my Geek score - 32-bit free version. The 64-bit test would offer about a 12% higher score but there is a fee. Check that out vs the score you get on yours to compare (quit all software for the test) and remember the free 32-bit version doesn't really offer higher scores with more RAM. Here's a link to do the test on yours

    Attached Files:

  5. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Oct 22, 2007
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    Also, look at RAM capabilities. You might find a slower machine with more RAM works faster than vice versa. Look at the RAM requirements for the programs you want to run to help gauge what you need.

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