RMBP or MBA 11" + iMac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by r23w, Aug 10, 2012.

  1. r23w macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2008
    #1
    Im on the hunt for a new mac. I originally wanted to get the top of the line MBP 2.7 GHZ, 16 GB RAM, 512GB SSD for $3,249.00. But then I thought about getting an 11" MBA with 2.0GHZ, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD for $1349 and then I would wait for new iMacs to come out and get a top of the line model either 21 or 27 for about $2000 - $2500.

    I use macs a hell of a lot, I'm a Film and TV student. I currently have a new iPad and would sell it if I went with the MBA + iMac. Also I have access to discounts on the macs as well, so it looks like i'd be spending about 100-200 more for the MBA+iMac setup, after discounts + selling my iPad. I really haven't been using my iPad too much, the only downside of the 11" air is the 5 hour battery life.

    I was checking out geekbench for all of these three devices and the score for the high end RMBP is 13279 for 64 bit, and the 11" maxed out mba is 7553 which is a little more than half of the rmbp score. Also a maxed out iMac today is 12503, so a next gen iMac would be around maybe 1500-1600 possibly. So my reasoning is that with the iMac + MBA I would get more processing power, especially if I wait for a next gen model. I could maybe use the two as a cluster for FCPX, except im not sure if you can use two machinces that are not the same model.

    Also the MBA would be replacing my iPad, which I don't really use too much. So I would use the MBA in class for taking notes etc, I could move files between the two via a external drive or even time capsule. Right now I have a 3TB desktop thunderbolt drive, holding my media + backups.


    I do some gaming, lots of photo / video editing using FCP / Photoshop

    Any thoughts guys??
    Thanks.
     
  2. hafr macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2011
    #2
    The MBA will be better than the rMBP when you're running around campus, sitting in class and so on. The iMac will give you a much larger screen. If you're ready to sacrifice portability and screen estate for a slightly more power machine, go for the rMBP.

    Personally I'd never go for the one computer setup, unless you're out and about a lot and need to edit photos and so on somewhere else than at home.
     
  3. r23w thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2008
    #3
    Thanks, and I've edited a movie and edited photos on the base model 11" MBA and it didnt feel terribly sluggish at all, in fact I was surprised by the performance. And again if I wait for a next gen iMac its going to be more powerful than the RMBP
     
  4. JoeG4 macrumors 68030

    JoeG4

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    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Bay Area, Ca.
    #4
    This is a surprisingly tough one for me to give me opinion on because I like both a lot; I'm a HUGE fan of desktops, and when it comes to things that like using up lots of disk space & CPU time, desktops are where it's at.

    On the other hand, the RMBP has an amazing screen.. but so does the 27" imac :]
     
  5. thinkinblue613 macrumors 6502

    thinkinblue613

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    #5
    If I had that budget, I would go do the MBA 13" and iMac 21 or 27.
     
  6. Scrub175 macrumors 6502

    Scrub175

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    Apr 25, 2012
    Location:
    Port St Lucie FL
    #6
    Same dilemma. Trying to decide MBA and 27 iMac, or rMBP and iMac. I'm going to follow this thread.
     
  7. thinkinblue613 macrumors 6502

    thinkinblue613

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    #7
    Have you thought about the rMBP and Macbook Air combo?
     
  8. Scrub175 macrumors 6502

    Scrub175

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    Apr 25, 2012
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    #8
    Honestly no. I'm hung up on my main computer being a desktop. I've had windows laptops as my main machine but recently test drove an iMac and was in heaven.
     
  9. Blackberryroid macrumors 6502a

    Blackberryroid

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    #9
    The MBA does FCP X perfectly. Rendering a 5 minute footage with some color corrections with stabilizations and some vignette takes 6 minutes, though. I'm patient so I'm fine with that. I'm not sure about you. Normally, I would recommend the rMBP, but are you really doing a lot of FCP work? I mean like, once every 2 weeks with tight deadlines? In that case, I would recommend rMBP. If you're doing FCP occasionally (once every 3 months), then the Air will do just fine.
     
  10. r23w thread starter macrumors member

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    May 9, 2008
    #10
    Well I would use FCP on the iMac and just replace my iPad use with the Macbook air.
     
  11. r23w thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2008
    #11
    Is there any way of gettin the iMac and MBA to sync all files? So like I could access all my files on both machines?

    Is there a way to do that automatically via a local network or even thunderbolt? I know I could do it via time machine but I want something automatic. Has anyone used chronosync?
     
  12. musique macrumors regular

    musique

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    #12
    Yesterday, I sat next to someone who had a relatively new MBA 11" in a meeting. It was the first time I'd ever seen an 11" MBA. Although the screen was crisp, the colors were not nearly as robust as the MBP.

    You say that you've edited on a MBA 11. Was it comfortable? Did you spend hour after hour doing serious editing? I could not imagine editing a movie on such a small screen. I use FCP and PP for editing and, personally, I think it would drive me a little batty to use such a small screen for editing video.

    Just one man's opinion. Good luck on your decision.
     
  13. JoeG4 macrumors 68030

    JoeG4

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    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Bay Area, Ca.
    #13
    It sounds to me like his plan is to edit video from the imac and use the mba when he's in class.
     

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