Macbook + iMac or Macbook Pro + monitor?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by bigfried, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. bigfried macrumors newbie

    Mar 18, 2008
    I was just about to go for a Macbook Pro with an external 24" monitor and then realised that for a similar amount of cash I could get a 24" iMac and a Macbook!
    2 computers for the price of 1.

    I guess there are pros and cons for each setup, the main one with 2 computers being synchronisation I suppose. I am new to Macs. Is it easy to do so, can they network wirelessly through a normal router. I have never had 2 computers so are there problems with this?

    Which setup would you prefer and why?
  2. MacInTO macrumors 65816


    Apr 25, 2005
    Canada, eh!
    I have the MBP and external monitor.

    I don't like the glossy screen because I edit photos most of the time.

    Two mac are good also though.

    Macs are easy to network as well.
  3. quidire macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2004
    Washington DC (in Kalorama Triangle)
    MBP + 23" ACD + Time Capsule

    One computer is going to be easier than sync'ing, no matter how easy the latter is (and w/ .Mac, it's pretty damn easy).

    The main benefit of having two computers to one, is the implicit backup. Get a Time Capsule, you'll have painless backup.


  4. jackc macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2003
    MacBook + monitor

    I don't see the point of getting an iMac in that situation.
  5. andiwm2003 macrumors 601


    Mar 29, 2004
    Boston, MA
    it's always better to have two computers in case one computer dies. also allows to download a movie on one and work on the other. in addition the imac is faster than the mbp because of the faster HD.

    i vote for macbook plus imac.

    if you have already a second mac or need a more powerful notebook then go for the mbp.
  6. lwcoffer2 macrumors member


    Jan 26, 2007
  7. Globetrotter macrumors regular


    Nov 5, 2007
    Except that the Macbook may not be suited to the OP's needs, no?

    Plus, the Macbook video out is limited, I believe.
  8. anti-microsoft macrumors 68000

    Dec 15, 2006
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    If you don't do anything special (Professional) I'd go with iMac and MacBook. This way you have two beautiful computers: One for the road and the other for home.

    Just my opinion

  9. EB66 macrumors 6502

    Mar 4, 2008
    ive always wanted to have a desktop in addition to a laptop so if I was you id go for macbook + imac, i just like the idea of it i guess

    plus it looks cooler on the desk ;)
  10. iDAG macrumors 65816


    Sep 9, 2007
    Athens, Ohio
    If I were you I would go with the MacBook Pro and the display because everything is in one place (the idea of getting a Time Capsule mentioned earlier by quidire is good for the just in case thing :)).
  11. EB66 macrumors 6502

    Mar 4, 2008
    ill take my last post back, i feel bad telling someone to get something based on looks because all in all having a portable machine that is just as powerful as a desktop is a better choice in my book

    ive never owned two macs at once but would think keeping everything on one would be easier
  12. bradbowl macrumors member

    Aug 10, 2005
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I use a MBP and an external LCD/keyboard/mouse as my sole computer. It is nice having everything in one place as other members have stated. I use an external 2TB hard drive array for data backup and storage which works well.

    I go on many meetings/conferences around the US and I do get a little nervous taking all of my files with me despite having them backed up at home however. When I do work on the road or in at my university I do enjoy the high quality MBP screen and added real estate over the smaller display of the macbook.

    For the price, I would say getting the macbook and iMac is a better value. But it depends on how much work on the road you do.
  13. iJesus macrumors 6502a


    Jun 30, 2007
    Reno, Nevada
    Definitely get the macbook & iMac.

    I have a MBP and a 24" iMac and I have to say that it's nice having both.

    The sync really well and you can always use them over the network.
    Also, I love how my iPhone is able to sync between the two things.

    The screen on the iMac is really nice and because I have a laptop and a desktop I don't have to lug my laptop to my room everyday.

    In the end though, it's your choice.
  14. benlangdon macrumors 65832


    Jan 13, 2008
    mbp and monitor.
    i love my setup

    just make sure you get a good external monitor as ones with big dot pitch will make using both unbearable
  15. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    From someone who is up to 9 computers........heres my take:

    I would go with the macbook pro and monitor. Heres why:

    First, the macbook pro will be poeerful, but if you get it get the ram from crucial or newegg, max it to 4 gb and get the model with the 512 vid card (if that suits your needs) and a 7200RPM harddrive so you can get the most power out of your notebook.

    Then, pick your monitor and run it in extended desktop mode, that way you have two screens to work off of. I edit lots of photos so I keep my tool palette and AIM on one screen and my photo on the big screen.

    With the macbook pro you have all the power you want in a portable OR desktop solution.

    If after this setup you still REALLY want an iMac you can pick one up as it should be updated by then :) Also you never stated what you will be using it for.
  16. daneoni macrumors G4


    Mar 24, 2006
    I have an iMac & BlackBook and its nice having both computers. I use the iMac as my main workhorse for video/music/photos conversion/storage/editing and its the one that syncs my gadgets.

    The BlackBook handles school related stuff like Keynotes/Essays/Thesis and general couch/on the go computing

    Syncing is not hard between both just drag & drop over Wi-Fi or ethernet. Each computer has a backup of the core files of itself & the other computer (...and yes these are backed up on an external medium...not TimeMachine/TimeCapsule)

    Recently the MacBook's display inverter had to be replaced and i easily just left the computer with the genius because i knew i had the iMac at home and wouldn't lose on productivity.

    Having two computers allows each to be true to itself. The desktop remains a desktop and the laptop remains a laptop. I tried to do the MBP+ACD combo and just found it was clunky...always having to disconnect/connect cables and soon found myself constantly leaving the MBP connected because i didn't want to deal with reconnections ....meaning i had a desktop-esque setup most of the time

    So i sold both the monitor and the MBP and got the iMac/BlackBook combo and i'm happy

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