What to buy for educational technology doctorate?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by japanscholar, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. japanscholar macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
    #1
    Hello,

    I will be starting a doctorate degree in Ed. Tech in April and I am looking to buy a macbook pro to use for the program. For my courses I will need to install and use these software packages:

    Microsoft Office 2008
    iWorks
    iLife
    Adobe CS4 Web Premium - Flash CS4, Dreamweaver CS4, Fireworks CS4, Contribute CS4, Acrobat 9 Pro, Soundbooth CS4 and Photoshop CS4

    Obviously if money was not an option I would buy the biggest and baddest one out there but I am on a budget. What is the least expensive option that I could get away with?

    Thanks,

    Daniel
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #2
    The low-end macbook pro would be fine for you. The only think you'll need to decide for yourself is what size screen you want.
     
  3. keysersoze macrumors 68000

    keysersoze

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    NH
    #3
    If no external monitor, then Low-end 15" MBP with anti-glare screen. Look at the refurbs for a good deal.
     
  4. japanscholar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
    #4
    Options

    Thanks for the advice. Can I just buy it as is or do I need any of the options like the hard drive upgrades. Also, is it a worth it to get the AppleCare Protection Plan?
     
  5. keysersoze macrumors 68000

    keysersoze

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    NH
    #5
    Hard Drive & RAM is very easy to do yourself later on, if you need to. Applecare is a very good idea, but you have a whole year to decide if you want to buy it or not.
     
  6. japanscholar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
  7. Habitus macrumors 6502a

    Habitus

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Location:
    Where ever my life takes me...
    #7
    The 13" or entry level 15" MBP will work fine for your needs. I'd go with the 13" and save some money. Also, you'll want 4GB of RAM and a 500GB hdd.

    Habitus :apple:
     
  8. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #8
    In terms of software, why buy both Office and iWork? If you're going to buy Office, don't bother with iWork.

    As a student, you'll most likely be eligible for student pricing at your university; for example my school sells Office for $30; right now you can get Office from Microsoft via their Ultimate Steal program for $30 as well. iLife is free and comes with your computer, so don't worry about that. For Adobe Web Premium and Photoshop, again see if your school offers discounted student versions of those? If worse comes to worst, I'd go buy the Master Collection instead of Web Premium with Photoshop. I believe the former is a little more, but you get all the programs.

    Computer-wise, what you is your budget? Do you factor in the cost of software? I'd check out the refurbished store on Apple.com; computers are all the same as new except for packaging. Nonetheless, I'd get the 15" mid-range model with the dedicated 9600M GT graphics. Sure the entry level computers may do the job, but that's like buying a entry model compact with no A/C. Something you'll need to live with later on unless you make the right choice now.
     
  9. js81 macrumors 65816

    js81

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Location:
    KY
    #9
    I get what you're getting at, but I don't think that's a fair comparison. Very few people could deal with a car that does not have A/C. I think a more fair car comparison would be to say buying a compact as a family car when a mid-size would "fit" better.

    The 9400M is a perfectly acceptable graphics card for most basic (and even moderate) users. However, I do agree with you suggesting the 9600M, if the OP has the budget for it. If not, the 9400M 15" (or any 13", my preferred size) will be totally OK.

    While not as heavy into graphics as you sound like you are, I still use my old 17" iMac in my sig for everything I do. Sure it ain't the fastest, but it gets the job done.
     
  10. dbwie macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM, USA
    #10

    iWork can be had for $41 edu price with a new MacBook purchase. Not a bad deal for using Keynote, especially, which is preferable to Powerpoint in my opinion. That is the only reason I would buy iWork in addition to Office 2008 (I have both).
     
  11. brendu macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #11
    I got the entry 13" when I began my education masters program, I love it but would highly recommend you go for the entry 15" with matte screen. The glass screen really gets annoying when using it in a bright classroom / outside / near windows. If money is any issue go for the 13" though... it can be dealt with and will be plenty powerful enough for you.
     

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