Howdy All, I'm an entering graduate student that is passionate about photography. I shoot photos every day and am working to get noticed so I can earn income as a photographer during my years as a grad student. I need a computer that will allow me to edit photos in Photoshop quickly. Also, it would be nice to have the ability to edit audio and video since this is rapidly integrating with digital photography. Lastly, I will use the machine to design my own website. Having something portable will be important in school and otherwise so I might hold onto my current laptop or sell it and buy another one. My current five-year-old computer is a Dell Inspiron 9200 laptop with 17" screen, 1GB of RAM, and a 2GHz single core processor. Needless to say, it nearly dies working with large TIFF files in Photoshop CS2. In fact, multiple things have failed on it in the past couple years, but I fixed everything myself. I have experience working on PCs and am comfortable doing so. Here's the deal; I am pretty sick of every Microsoft OS other than DOS. My laptop came with Vista, which was terrible, so I switched back to XP, which stalls/crashes often. My Parents have a new Core2Quad Dell running Vista and even that thing feels dog slow compared to a mid-range Mac running OSX. Perhaps Windows 7 is the fix, but I doubt it considering that every OS since Windows 2000 Professional has gotten slower and more bloated. So, I need something powerful, and I need to still have something portable available. Being a student, my budget isn't great, around $2k, if I sell a couple other things. The options I am considering are the MacBook Pro (13" or 15", and selling my current laptop), 24" iMac, building my own PC for a grand, or getting a base model 2009 Mac Pro with an affordable 24" monitor and living like a poet. Will a MacBook Pro with external monitor make the cut? Should I just save hundreds and built an ultra fast PC to run Windows 7? Or, should I drop everything into a quad-core Mac Pro? I was originally going to get a 24" iMac and hang onto my laptop, but I have not been hearing good things about them. Here's a sample of my photography: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ericksonphotography/ Thanks in advance! Man, this is a stressful but exciting process I am VERY happy that I will be able to save time during editing.