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Please help me buy the correct MacBook

tmal85

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 27, 2017
22
6
Hi everyone

I was waiting for the updates to the MacBook line and am now looking to purchase

However for what I think I need the offer end MacBook Air and lower end MacBook Pro I think will work are very close in price so I thought I would ask the experts

I plan on mostly using this for

Using iBooks Author and writing
Using with my iPhone for normal photo editing and saving
Email,internet, and normal uses

I would prefer a very good screen for photo editing but both look nice to me

I would plan on an external HD to store photos etc and thought a 512 Mac internal but maybe even 256

I think 8 gigs of ram ? Would be fine for what I need

The last MacBook I have which is now really slow and old is the giant 17 inch one from 2010 so I haven’t looked at these in a long time

The only other thing I may do is use this for song ideas with logic

I have a home studio with a loaded iMac that I do real recording on but a portable idea machine would be cool but if it takes it into a whole other price range I don’t need that

So I was wondering what you thought for book writing and photo editing and then regular use such as email and internet etc

Oh also what is a great and reliable external hd, 1 TB that u recommend ?

Thanks so much
 

TorontoJen

macrumors member
May 17, 2016
42
25
Toronto
Hi everyone

I was waiting for the updates to the MacBook line and am now looking to purchase

However for what I think I need the offer end MacBook Air and lower end MacBook Pro I think will work are very close in price so I thought I would ask the experts

I plan on mostly using this for

Using iBooks Author and writing
Using with my iPhone for normal photo editing and saving
Email,internet, and normal uses

I would prefer a very good screen for photo editing but both look nice to me

I would plan on an external HD to store photos etc and thought a 512 Mac internal but maybe even 256

I think 8 gigs of ram ? Would be fine for what I need

The last MacBook I have which is now really slow and old is the giant 17 inch one from 2010 so I haven’t looked at these in a long time

The only other thing I may do is use this for song ideas with logic

I have a home studio with a loaded iMac that I do real recording on but a portable idea machine would be cool but if it takes it into a whole other price range I don’t need that

So I was wondering what you thought for book writing and photo editing and then regular use such as email and internet etc

Oh also what is a great and reliable external hd, 1 TB that u recommend ?

Thanks so much
 
Comment

TorontoJen

macrumors member
May 17, 2016
42
25
Toronto
I thought I would reply since I am an author and my own cover designer, and this is my daily use scenario.
I’d probably pick the MacBook Pro over the Air, just because the difference on price is negligible and the entry-level Pro is a quad core, not dual core, processor.
I use my 2015 Pro for writing, creating ebooks, and editing photos with Photoshop. It still handles the tasks beautifully and effortlessly. I have never regretted opting for the Pro. Mine only has 8gb of RAM and 256gb, but I save stuff on my external drive or in the cloud.
Hope this helps.
 
Comment

tmal85

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 27, 2017
22
6
I thought I would reply since I am an author and my own cover designer, and this is my daily use scenario.
I’d probably pick the MacBook Pro over the Air, just because the difference on price is negligible and the entry-level Pro is a quad core, not dual core, processor.
I use my 2015 Pro for writing, creating ebooks, and editing photos with Photoshop. It still handles the tasks beautifully and effortlessly. I have never regretted opting for the Pro. Mine only has 8gb of RAM and 256gb, but I save stuff on my external drive or in the cloud.
Hope this helps.

Hi

Yes it does, what u do is very close to what I want to use it for so your experience is great to hear about

I was thinking the pro did have better specs for close to the price but if saving a couple hundred dollars could be had then that would be cool to

So far then meaning entry pro

Thank u
 
Comment

Howard2k

macrumors 68030
Mar 10, 2016
2,906
2,160
I’d go with the Pro over the Air too if you can make it work. Just don’t forget you’ll need a backup strategy too so factor that into your spend.
 
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tmal85

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 27, 2017
22
6
Thanks Howard

I am not familiar with today’s external drives for a new MacBook and read u need to format a backup drive for Mac ? Can u recommend a good drive for this and what that entails ?

I thought to store the photos which there are of course a couple thousand in an external drive and thru my account the iCloud I think ?

Thank you
 
Comment

Howard2k

macrumors 68030
Mar 10, 2016
2,906
2,160
Thanks Howard

I am not familiar with today’s external drives for a new MacBook and read u need to format a backup drive for Mac ? Can u recommend a good drive for this and what that entails ?

I thought to store the photos which there are of course a couple thousand in an external drive and thru my account the iCloud I think ?

Thank you


If it comes as NTFS it will need to be reformatted. It’s a piece of cake though.

The real issue is that the drive may come with Windows backup software but no Mac version. That’s also trivial to work around. You can use Time Machine in macOS and/or third party solutions.

I would figure out a budget and them go over to Amazon. For backup I would not use an external SSD, performance just isn’t that important IMO.

If you are storing data externally you can back that up too. You’d have two external drives, one is your data drive and one is your backup drive.

If I was using a 1TB data drive with a 256GB internal SSD (for example) I would want a minimum of 1TB + 2 x 256GB of storage on my backup drive. So at least 1.5TB.
 
Comment

tmal85

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 27, 2017
22
6
If it comes as NTFS it will need to be reformatted. It’s a piece of cake though.

The real issue is that the drive may come with Windows backup software but no Mac version. That’s also trivial to work around. You can use Time Machine in macOS and/or third party solutions.

I would figure out a budget and them go over to Amazon. For backup I would not use an external SSD, performance just isn’t that important IMO.

If you are storing data externally you can back that up too. You’d have two external drives, one is your data drive and one is your backup drive.

If I was using a 1TB data drive with a 256GB internal SSD (for example) I would want a minimum of 1TB + 2 x 256GB of storage on my backup drive. So at least 1.5TB.
[doublepost=1563654221][/doublepost]Thank you all

I went to Best Buy and tried a few out

Air and pro

I fully intended to just look and test and ...

Ended up with a pro lol

13 inch
2.4 i5
8 gigs ram
256

They were having a sale on HD ready for Mac and I bought a 1TB one and got the cable to connect it

I brought it home and set it up and have to say I love this thing ! You all were a great help to me as well

The old giant MacBook Pro I have was barely working and so heavy

I love the keyboard on this and the fingerprint is is nice

I have no idea how the touch bar works so I’ll be learning that

I also need to learn the trackpad and finger gestures better

I downloaded iBooks Author and set up the rest if my stuff thru iTunes and it went perfect and quickly

I love the size of this and it’s very responsive

I wasn’t sure how the 2 connectors worked but that seems straight forward and I don’t need to daisy chain devices like it do with my iMac in the studio so this is a very simple setup

Just wanted to report to you all and say thanks again for the help

Going to a store is dangerous

Thanks again !
 
Comment

PVDHell

macrumors regular
Sep 4, 2018
101
300
PVD
Get the pro; more computer per dollar I think; and it’s better to be over computer’d than the other way round.
 
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Glockworkorange

Suspended
Feb 10, 2015
2,511
4,179
Chicago, Illinois
Hi everyone

I was waiting for the updates to the MacBook line and am now looking to purchase

However for what I think I need the offer end MacBook Air and lower end MacBook Pro I think will work are very close in price so I thought I would ask the experts

I plan on mostly using this for

Using iBooks Author and writing
Using with my iPhone for normal photo editing and saving
Email,internet, and normal uses

I would prefer a very good screen for photo editing but both look nice to me

I would plan on an external HD to store photos etc and thought a 512 Mac internal but maybe even 256

I think 8 gigs of ram ? Would be fine for what I need

The last MacBook I have which is now really slow and old is the giant 17 inch one from 2010 so I haven’t looked at these in a long time

The only other thing I may do is use this for song ideas with logic

I have a home studio with a loaded iMac that I do real recording on but a portable idea machine would be cool but if it takes it into a whole other price range I don’t need that

So I was wondering what you thought for book writing and photo editing and then regular use such as email and internet etc

Oh also what is a great and reliable external hd, 1 TB that u recommend ?

Thanks so much
Air.
 
Comment

Glockworkorange

Suspended
Feb 10, 2015
2,511
4,179
Chicago, Illinois
Let me explain--maybe you can save a few shekels.

You are basically using the machine for text related purposes.

My father is an author with a similar use case and his 2013 Air is still fantastic.

I know others are talking about quad core processors, but for your use case, they really aren't needed.

It's true the Pro is only a few hundred more, but you can either: 1) save that few hundred bucks or 2) use it to upgrade RAM or storage.

I don't think you can go wrong either either; however, if it were me, I would go with the Air.
 
Last edited:
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Howard2k

macrumors 68030
Mar 10, 2016
2,906
2,160
Let me explain--maybe you can save a few shekels.

You are basically using the machine for text related purposes.

My father is an author with a similar use case and his 2013 Air is still fantastic.

I know others are talking about quad core processors, but for your use case, they really aren't needed.

It's true the Pro is only a few hundred more, but you can either: 1) save that few hundred bucks or 2) use it to upgrade RAM or storage.

I don't think you can go wrong either either; however, if it were me, I would go with the Air.


I recommended the Pro, because for that much money I’d rather have a quad core. But I can’t entirely disagree with your rationale either.

I use a dual core and I use it for harder use than the OP. And it works great. Some tasks it doesn’t really matter whether it take one minute or thirty seconds. And if that few hundred is the difference between a suitable router or decent backup strategy, then it’s an easy choice.
 
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kp98077

macrumors 65816
Oct 26, 2010
1,439
498
[doublepost=1563654221][/doublepost]Thank you all

I went to Best Buy and tried a few out

Air and pro

I fully intended to just look and test and ...

Ended up with a pro lol

13 inch
2.4 i5
8 gigs ram
256

They were having a sale on HD ready for Mac and I bought a 1TB one and got the cable to connect it

I brought it home and set it up and have to say I love this thing ! You all were a great help to me as well

The old giant MacBook Pro I have was barely working and so heavy

I love the keyboard on this and the fingerprint is is nice

I have no idea how the touch bar works so I’ll be learning that

I also need to learn the trackpad and finger gestures better

I downloaded iBooks Author and set up the rest if my stuff thru iTunes and it went perfect and quickly

I love the size of this and it’s very responsive

I wasn’t sure how the 2 connectors worked but that seems straight forward and I don’t need to daisy chain devices like it do with my iMac in the studio so this is a very simple setup

Just wanted to report to you all and say thanks again for the help

Going to a store is dangerous

Thanks again !

Good choice! that's the machine I have as well, great balance....! enjoy
 
Comment

Glockworkorange

Suspended
Feb 10, 2015
2,511
4,179
Chicago, Illinois
I recommended the Pro, because for that much money I’d rather have a quad core. But I can’t entirely disagree with your rationale either.

I use a dual core and I use it for harder use than the OP. And it works great. Some tasks it doesn’t really matter whether it take one minute or thirty seconds. And if that few hundred is the difference between a suitable router or decent backup strategy, then it’s an easy choice.
He can't go wrong with either. He's going to need to budget for dongles either way!
 
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