Hi, I'm a long time lurker and first time poster. I got my first iPod (16gb touch) last week and am now in the market for a computer. For a quick background, I'm coming from a quad core Windows XP machine with 4gbs of ram, an 8800GTS, yada yada yada. I'm getting a mac because I want to persue my photography and video hobby more seriously, and windows seriously lacks the software for this and I simply want a change. Now, I need to chose between a Macbook Pro with Hi-res 17" matte screen and 200gb 7200RPM hard drive which comes out to $3459 before taxes, or a mac pro octo-2.8ghz, 500gb hard drive, 8800GT machine which is $3199 plus tax. Software will come later (FC4, Aperture), and storage isn't a concern, I can use networked external drives for that. Now, I currently have a 46" Sony Bravia W3000 1080P LCD that will be hooked up to either system, but I also have 24" Samsung 245BW. It's a decent monitor, but the viewing angle is terrible and I'm certainly not "impressed" especially for editing. If I get the MBP I'll sell this to eliminate the extra cost, but if I get the MP I'll keep this as one of my displays. I know the Mac Pro is a more powerful system and also slightly cheaper, but I honestly don't think I'll ever use 8 cores or even all 4, I've yet to find a use for the four on my current Windows system... I'm going to university next year and I'll be staying at home and have an ultra portable for note taking, so the laptop won't travel too much, but it may travel a bit during trips and such. Plus, having the option to take it with me will be great. I'm kind of leaning towards the MBP just because I've always been particularly fond of them, and I quite honestly don't think I'll need the extra power of the MP. [I just realized a 24" iMac and black MB cost basically the same as either of my above options... rawr, too many decision!] I'll likely be buying whatever I chose in late February/March, so please try and sway me either way! Thank you to anyone who read my big ramble of aloud thoughts and can offer some insight.