MacBook Pro vs. iMac + MB

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jodr, Feb 3, 2010.

  1. jodr macrumors member

    Jan 18, 2010
    Hey, you crazy kids. Waiting for anything?

    I'm done holding out for the "next level", but the Apple Store has given me something to think about. I've realized I could get the low-end 21" iMac and a Macbook for about 2,400 using Apple's student discount.

    I could get a MacBook Pro with the specs I want for about 2,500.

    As MBP users, is there any reason you think I'd be happier, healthier and more virile just sticking with the single Pro machine? I'd be getting better specs in the iMac alone - except the graphics card situation. And I plan to do some video editing on the thing.

    But as with Apple, I was focusing more on the experiential matters. In your gut, would you rather have the MBP, or the nice desktop and low-end laptop. It's purely unscientific, just wondering. I'm oh-so-close to pulling the trigger.
  2. dragonmantek macrumors regular


    Oct 16, 2007
    New York
    From what I hear the 9400m is very well suited for graphical editing in any way that doesn't include 3d designing. I'm still waiting for a MBP update for the outdated card to be updated, till then I'm sticking with my current imac.

    You could just go the length and purchase the 27" if you don't need the portability.
  3. Sanderr macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2007
    If you don't need a powerhouse on the road, definitely go for the imac and macbook. I would too if i did not need some serious processing power while being away from home. But i do want that, so i'm going mbp soon.
  4. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    9400M is a capable chip.

    I'd go for the iMac (with discrete graphics) and MacBook. That's a similar setup I'm going for: 21.5" iMac and 13" MBP.
  5. Feng Shui macrumors regular

    Apr 9, 2008
  6. arcobb macrumors regular

    Feb 3, 2005
    I've got a Macmini and the 24" display along for the ride is a 12inch macbook. Sweet set up and have nothing to complain about. Not really a gamer but I do plenty of design work. Mostly photoshop, indesign and illustrator. Happy camper here!
  7. dan5.5 macrumors 6502

    Oct 26, 2008
    I would get a refurb macbook pro for 999... and the iMac.
    I dont like the design of the macbooks...
  8. palmerc2 macrumors 68000


    Feb 29, 2008
    Los Angeles
    MacBook Pro, definitely........

    I currently have a 24" iMac, and I am just waiting for the refresh to dig my paws into a 17" MBP. I do design work on the road so I need the screen real estate at all times.....I may end up getting an external monitor for when I am at home, but I should be good with the 17" screen for now....

    If you really want to get an iMac, I would recommend getting the 27" for a little more $ cuz then you would have an amazing monitor to plug your MB into if you wanted to....

    me personally, I prefer to have all my stuff on one machine....if I have an important project on one computer, and not the other then I need it.....only to find out its on the other machine, I'M F***ED!
  9. Hellishness macrumors 65816


    Jan 27, 2010
    Bay Area, CA
    i would not choose that for the sole reason that the macbook looks cheap and ugly imo. otherwise i need almost no processing power but i would just pay the extra $200 for looks, blacklit keyboard, etc.
  10. jodr thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 18, 2010
    Thanks for all the replies.

    That is something I'm concerned about - the feasibility of two machines. I assume two macs would play nice together, and I've heard of a neat "back to my mac" feature in the latest OS X that I thought might seal the deal.

    So I like the specs, portability, stability of the two-machine set-up, yet the simplicity of one machine to hold all of my data and programs is also appealing. Something tells me I'll still be at this by the time there are i7 MacBook Airs.
  11. eninety88 macrumors newbie

    Oct 14, 2008
    i have a 27" imac, 13umb and 15umbp.... it really depends on your needs. the 27" imac is amazing. for me the imac + macbook is a great idea, but if you compute more at home, you're not going to use the macbook too much. if youre okay with that, then hell go for it. Sharing files and whatever, its an inconvenience but the sacrifice for 27" screen is worth it. if you use your computers for work and work mostly, then get the 15" mbp. its a solid work horse. if you do a lot of things, i.e. music, movies, photos, web, then you don't need all of your data all the time. for the important stuff use dropbox, gdocs or mobileme. The 15umbp is my work/school computer. i have the imac in my living room with a desk and my macbook on the couch/in the bedroom.
  12. jedivulcan macrumors 6502

    May 15, 2007
    I have a 13" and a 15" uMBP. I personally use the 13" for school and the 15" around the house and at the desk. I always prefer portability, mobility and power redundancy over larger screens.

    Furthermore, I have a 22" screen in a crunch for either MBP.
  13. dan5.5 macrumors 6502

    Oct 26, 2008
    I also recommend dropbox, it give you 2 gigs of free storage...
    I use it to "sync" crucial docs with multiple computers, and my bootcamp partition.

    here is an invite (you got 250mb more if you use an invite)

    Best of luck with your decision
  14. kny3twalker macrumors 65816


    Oct 25, 2009
    What about getting a MacBook pro and a high end 24", 27" or 30" monitor like a Dell UltraSharp, HP LP series, or Apple Cinema Display along with a external keyboard and mouse?
  15. jonnysods macrumors 603


    Sep 20, 2006
    There & Back Again
    Wait for the MBP. I am just coming out of a MB/iMac setup - file syncing is a pain, it's best to just have the one machine. But I would wait for the next upgrade because the new iMacs outpace the current MBP's.

    I'm waiting for the next MBP because of this reason - one computer keeps it all simple.

    I really hope that it's just a few weeks away though.....!
  16. Alvi macrumors 65816


    Oct 31, 2008
    Firstly better wait for the Core i5 Refresh of the MacBook Pros, but I'd say you better get 1 High end computer, the MBP or the iMac than 2 Low end ones, I'd say you should get the High end 15" or even the 17" depending on what you're planning to do with it
  17. mobi macrumors 6502


    Jul 26, 2004
    Penn's Woods
    Several people that I have spoke with are taking the same approach:

    iMac + MB vs MBP

    I would go for the iMac + MB!
  18. jodr thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 18, 2010
    Done and done. I actually knocked some of the RAM off the iMac, and plunked the extra money into making the Macbook a low-end, 13" MBP.

    This is a nice set-up, for the same price as just a souped up 15". Which would be preferable if I needed tons of power on the road, but I don't.

    The iMac is still on the way, but I've got the MBP and am investigating how exactly I'm going to keep them reasonably synced up. But my God...this is a nice machine.
  19. CP123 macrumors regular

    Dec 22, 2008
    You made a good choice. You will love both machines. I have a 20 inch iMac, a black MB, and 15 inch MBP. I find that I use the laptops more than the iMac.

    Your next investment should be in a good external hard drive.

    Good luck and enjoy.
  20. duky macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2007
    North Carolina
    I recommend Windows Live Sync! Love it. Enjoy the computers, I'm sure you will
  21. MMM.PWR macrumors 6502


    Sep 21, 2009
    iMac + MB is ideal. Congrats and be sure to post pictures. :D
  22. iMacThere4Iam macrumors regular

    Dec 28, 2009
    Good Move

    Excellent choice. I may go the same route when I get my tax refund. I love the 21.5" iMac; it seems like a lot of value for the money. The display is phenomenal. The 13" MBP is the perfect complement to the desktop. Be alert for one of the Macs replacing deleted items on the other while synching. Otherwise, it's all good. Congrats.
  23. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502


    May 21, 2009
    Personally, I'd go for a high end MBP and a nice external display.

    I currently have a Mac Pro + 13" MBP setup, and I'm probably going to sell both to consolidate down to a single machine once the new MBPs are released. The main reason is so that I only have to worry about maintaining, updating, and backing up a single machine that would serve as both a home and work machine that comes with me on my daily commute. As it stands now, I take the 13" to work, and have to sync my files between the two on a daily basis.

    A high end 15" or even 17" MBP along with my LED ACD would fit the bill quite nicely :)

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