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macrumors 604
Original poster
Apr 11, 2005
I am willing to consider all opinions and suggestions. I would like to rethink my current setup and what I've had for several years now. Typically I have an iMac and a notebook as well as an iPad and an iPhone. I don't think I am getting the most out of my devices and would like to change what I have.

27" iMac (late 2013) 3.2GHz Quad-Core i5 24GB RAM 256GB SSD
w/ external 4TB USB 3.0 iTunes Media Drive & external 4TB USB 3.0 Time Machine Drive
Fujitsu Scansnap scanner & HP printer
13.3" MacBook Air (mid 2012) 1.8GHz Dual-Core i5 8GB RAM 120GB SSD
iPad Mini 2 (Retina) 32GB Verizon LTE
iPhone 6S Plus 64GB

The iMac is a media server, always on, never sleep except display for Apple TV streaming (mainly for kids movies) and to play music to kids bedrooms through Airport Express.

I don't particularly like smaller screens so I tend to gravitate to my office to surf the web, do remote desktop work and even when I was in grad school in 2012-2013 I only really used my MBA for class and did most of my work on my iMac. Screen real estate is a big thing. Also the iMac is wall mounted. It is the VESA model.

The iMac is primarily an iTunes server and hosts the iPhoto (now Photos) library and I use it for mail and web surfing as well as connecting the family iPad Air for syncing movies and apps. At two years old, it still has some time on it and I don't particularly like the idea of setting up a NAS and the workarounds of getting access to all our iTunes content.

But I may need to do a lot more work at home. I can remote in on the iMac. But I can also consider getting either a work laptop or a Surface Pro 3 or 4. This has me wondering if I should consider getting rid of my iMac, MacBook Air, and iPad Mini and getting a Mac Mini and a SP 4 and connecting them both to an LG, Dell, or Samsung 34" Ultrawide monitor.

Unfortunately the new Apple iPad Pro doesn't have the advantages of the SP4 (which I honestly never thought I would consider), namely full OS, more powerful specs, and the tilted keyboard - I prefer my Apple BT wireless keyboard and use an Apple full size USB keyboard on my Windows machine at work because of the angle and chiclet keys over the MBA keyboard which is nice but not angled. Likewise I didn't care for Apple's decision to leave the keyboard flat in the Smart Keyboard Cover.

I've also thought about the Mac Mini and screen along with a 12" MacBook, keeping my MBA, or a 13.3" Retina Pro. But I don't know that this really solves my work needs. And I would like to consolidate devices. My iPad Mini is so rarely used I should honestly sell it. I'm worried the the Mac Mini is underpowered compared to my iMac but I probably don't truly need the power. I am also concerned that the SP4 will be a disappointment because while I suffer Windows at work (and have yet to use 10), I am not sure I will enjoy it as my sole machine, but want to be more mobile.

But I really think Apple made a mistake not making the iPad Pro capable of running a modified version of OS X. If I could dual boot a SP4 with OS X and Windows for work, I'm fairly sure that would be the direction I would go.

I appreciate anyone taking the time to read through this and express any suggestions. Thanks.


macrumors member
Nov 20, 2014
Regarding the SP4, specs are not everything. If you want to try one, buy one. Worst case -- return it if you do not like it. Windows 10 is nice, but it is not OS X and won't feel like OS X.

In your case, I would get rid of the iPad Mini and the MBA and get a new Macbook 12" (since you're not overly concerned about power). Keep the iMac, it sounds like it's doing a great job.
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