My dad needs a Mac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by MacMini2009, Jul 21, 2009.

  1. MacMini2009 macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    May 22, 2009
    Location:
    California
    #1
    My dad is a architect/drafter and he uses an old HP pentium desktop computer. He uses AutoCAD. The computer is really slow and giving him a lot of problems. He comes to me a lot with problems with his computer asking me to fix it. I just thought, he needs a Mac. Macs are easy to use and I think it wont give him anymore problems. I have narrowed it down to two Macs, a 2.26GHz Mac Mini and the 2.66GHz 20in iMac. He already has a 19in HP monitor. He cannot use his current keyboard/mouse because they use the old style connectors. So here are the two possible ways to getting him a Mac.

    1. Buy the 2.26GHz Mac Mini (upgrade to 4GB of RAM and a SSD), buy an Apple Keyboard/Logitech MX Revolution, plus his HP 19in Monitor.

    2. Buy the 20in 2.66GHz iMac (Upgrade to 4GB of RAM) and connect the 19in HP monitor to the iMac.

    Please suggest to me which one we should get him. We are on a tight budget but he really needs a new computer because he uses a computer for work.
     
  2. doox00 macrumors regular

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    May 10, 2006
    #2
    Imac has better built in video card plus a slightly faster cpu.. may help him out?
     
  3. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

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    #3
    I recommend an iMac simply because it has much more raw processing power. It also comes with the aluminum Apple keyboard and wired Mighty Mouse. If cash is tight, go with a refurbished iMac. Also, the 24" iMac has a better LCD panel, which may or may not be important to your Dad's line of work. Instead of a cheap TN panel, 24" iMacs use the S-IPS panels, which are much more color accurate. But stay away from the Minis, I don't think they provide enough power for your needs.
     
  4. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604

    thegoldenmackid

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    #4
    While SnowLeopard2008 and I differ on the opinions of the MX Revolution, he is definitely right about the iMac.
     
  5. Hrududu macrumors 68020

    Hrududu

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    Jul 25, 2008
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    Central US
    #5
    Keep an eye on Apple's refurbished page. These are great deals. Right now you can pick up a really nice 24" 2.66GHz iMac for $100 more than a new 20" that has double the RAM installed and 2x as much hard drive space.
     
  6. MacMini2009 thread starter macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    #6
    Thanks guys. Do you think the 20in 2.66GHz iMac is good enough for his needs? Will the 9400M suffice?

    I will keep an eye on the refurbished Macs.
     
  7. rgarjr macrumors 603

    rgarjr

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    #7
    that depends if he does 3D modeling on ACAD. If all he does is 2D then it should be alright.
     
  8. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

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    #8
    Graphic cards don't do much more than display stuff on the screen. AutoCAD's render is all done with the CPU, not GPU.

    3D renders are done by CPU, not GPU, unless the application incorporates GPU-acceleration, which I think it does not.
     
  9. MacMini2009 thread starter macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    #9
    So I should be more worried about the CPU instead of the GPU?
     
  10. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

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    #10
    Yes. Majority of the stuff you do on a computer depends on the CPU.
     
  11. MacMini2009 thread starter macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    #11
    Ok thanks. I'm set on the 2.66GHz 20in iMac.
     
  12. mcpryon2 macrumors 6502

    mcpryon2

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    Dec 12, 2008
    #12
    Don't forget to factor in acquiring a copy of Windows since, as of now, AutoCAD doesn't run on OS X.

    I second the refurb option, overall they offer a terrific experience at a decent discount. The 2.4GHz MBP is $1349 right now, it's a great machine. You may want to consider that option in addition to the iMac or Mini.
     
  13. MacMini2009 thread starter macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    #13
    Serious? AutoCAD doesn't run on Macs? I guess we will have to buy Windows XP or Windows 7 when it comes out.
     
  14. LynnW macrumors member

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    Jul 4, 2008
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #14
    Autocad System Requirements

    For 32-bit AutoCAD 2010
    Microsoft® Windows® XP Professional or Home edition (SP2 or later)
    Intel® Pentium® 4 or AMD Athlon® dual-core processor, 1.6 GHz or higher with SSE2 technology
    2 GB RAM
    1 GB free disk space for installation
    1,024 x 768 VGA display with true color
    Microsoft® Internet Explorer® 7.0 or later
    Install from download, DVD, or CD

    or
    Microsoft® Windows Vista® (SP1 or later) including Enterprise, Business, Ultimate, or Home Premium edition (compare Windows Vista versions)
    Intel Pentium 4 or AMD Athlon dual-core processor, 3 GHz or higher with SSE2 technology
    2 GB RAM
    1 GB free disk space for installation
    1,024 x 768 VGA display with true color
    Internet Explorer 7.0 or later
    Install from download, DVD, or CD


    For 64-bit AutoCAD 2010
    Windows XP Professional x64 edition (SP2 or later) or Windows Vista (SP1 or later) including Enterprise, Business, Ultimate, or Home Premium edition (compare Windows Vista versions)
    AMD Athlon 64 with SSE2 technology, or AMD Opteron® processor with SSE2 technology, or Intel® Xeon® processor with Intel EM64T support and SSE2 technology, or Intel Pentium 4 with Intel EM64T support and SSE2 technology
    2 GB RAM
    1.5 GB free space for installation
    1,024 x 768 VGA display with true color
    Internet Explorer 7.0 or later
    Install from download, DVD, or CD


    Additional Requirements for 3D Modeling (All Configurations)
    Intel Pentium 4 processor or AMD Athlon, 3 GHz or higher; Intel or AMD dual-core processor, 2 GHz or higher
    2 GB RAM or greater
    2 GB hard disk space available in addition to free space required for installation
    1,280 x 1,024 32-bit color video display adapter (true color) 128 MB or greater, Microsoft® Direct3D® capable workstation class graphics card
     
  15. lars666 macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 13, 2008
    #15
    Keep in mind that the 24" version has a much nicer display panel, as SnowLeopard2008 pointed out.
     
  16. Fishrrman macrumors G3

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    Feb 20, 2009
    #16
    RE: My dad needs a Mac

    RE:
    "Do you think the 20in 2.66GHz iMac is good enough for his needs?"

    How's his vision? The 24" iMac has a far better display than the 20" model. And a sharp, clear display is important for CAD.

    VERY IMPORTANT QUESTION:
    You said one of the main programs he uses is AutoCAD.
    Is there an equivalent program that will suit his needs on the Mac?

    If there is NOT, he'd better be prepared to use BootCamp for the CAD, and use "the Mac side" for everything else. Be forewarned.

    - John
     
  17. MacMini2009 thread starter macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    California
    #18
    I think I may just get get him a Dell because the main things he do is AutoCAD, and surf the internet.
     
  18. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #19
    My friend Eric uses Auto CAD in a tool design and manufacture environment. All of the computers they use are quad core Win boxes. If your Dad only or mainly uses Auto CAD, go with a PC. Maybe add a Mac Mini if the budget will allow.

    Dale
     
  19. rgarjr macrumors 603

    rgarjr

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    #20
    A mini and Windows on Boot Camp will suit him just fine.
     
  20. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #21
    If he must run AutoCAD, I would expect to eventually encounter the same kind of problems, even if Windows is running on Apple hardware.
     
  21. MacMini2009 thread starter macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

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    California
    #22
    I've been looking at Dell.com and customizing some desktops, it gets really expensive. I think the 2.66GHz 20in iMac is the one we will be buying, plus Windows 7.
     
  22. armoguy94 macrumors 6502

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    Nov 9, 2007
    #23
    If he uses computers for long hours then I would not recommend an iMac. The eye strain that the stupid glass causes is awful, and I can notice that within the last year (not even...) since getting my iMac, my eye sight has gotten much, much worse, and I'm only 15
     
  23. dr. shdw macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 27, 2008
    #24
    You're supposed to take breaks at least once an hour lol..
     
  24. feelthefire macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 13, 2006
    #25
    A 9400M will be the absolute, no holds barred BARE MINIMUM for running AutoCAD. The windows drivers for it are terrible and it will be slooooooow. Not worth it when a much faster iMac with sufficient RAM and HD space is not much more.
     

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