Which mac is the best for a designer

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by simplyfab86, Jan 6, 2009.

  1. simplyfab86 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #1
    Hey,
    Which mac is the best for a graphic designer who at the moment works in mostly print.But is starting to do web, flash and after effects? I really don't want to spend more than $1500.
     
  2. nick9191 macrumors 68040

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    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Britain
    #2
    Is the screen (quality and size) important?

    Notebook, desktop?
     
  3. simplyfab86 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 6, 2009
    #3
    Screen quality isn't really that important. I'm still undecided of whether to buy a desktop or laptop. I'd prefer a laptop but I am very clumsy, and I dropped my last one a couple times.So i guess it would be helpful if I got feedback for both desktop and laptop versions and then I can move on from there....

    Thanks really appreciate it:)
     
  4. Emerica macrumors member

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    Jun 25, 2006
    #4
    Well it really depends on if you need portability or not. If you don't need to bring your computer anywhere with you, an iMac would be great. But if you do need to lug your computer around, you should get a MBP, seeing as you are a designer you probably need the extra screen real estate they provide over the MB. Also, you should be on the lookout for the new 17" MacBook Pro which is coming out soon.
     
  5. akbc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    #5
    My friend is in multimedia studies in University and his WhiteBook with X3100 is serving him well enough, although he sometimes complains he had a little more CPU power. He too uses After effects, flash and lots and lots of video editing as well. With $1500 budget, I'd say go with previous generation of MacBook Pro 15" or the new Aluminum MacBook (2.4GHz preferably).
     
  6. JasO macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #6
    A refurbished previous generation MacBook Pro.

    I would give more advice but you're starting post doesn't really impress me.
     
  7. simplyfab86 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 6, 2009
    #7
    Y even give any advice if you don't have anything helpful to say? Apparently you get off by starting arguments with people online.Get a life loser....On a better note thank you all who provided helpful advice. I am going to look into all of your suggestions!
     
  8. JasO macrumors regular

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    Jan 11, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #8
    I actually get off on people providing decent descriptions of what situation they're in and what they need. Learn it, use it.

    This isn't a text message, learn how to spell.

    'Y' ... get a clue.
     
  9. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

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    Dec 26, 2008
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    North Korea
    #9
    Refurbished Macbook Pro, get a unibody one if you can, definately need it for graphic design, not flash, but after effects yes.
     
  10. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #10

    How can the screen not be important if you're interested in print? Surely you'd want a PVA LCD panel, at minimum. :confused:

    Besides that, you really haven't provided enough information for anybody here to help you. Do you want a laptop, or desktop? Do you work away from the desk often, rarely, or not at all?

    What's your budget?

    Honestly, the Mac Pro (any current model) with a 30" ACD is the best combination for graphic design, and will last you many years. With regards to laptops, the 17" MBP with the matte screen and 8 GB of RAM is the best laptop for a graphic designer.

    Of course, if your budget is below that, or you want a laptop to carry around often, neither of those things are the "best" for your situation (and we don't know what that is).
     
  11. lucidmedia macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 13, 2008
    Location:
    Wellington, New Zealand
    #11
    I would actually make the counter-claim that monitor quality is more important for interactive work than print...

    I have never felt the need for a super accurate monitor to to do print work... a monitor cannot accurately reflect the way that ink and typography interacts with paper. Print design is abstract until the work hits the press. My 30 ACD is no better at representing print on the screen than the 20" CRTs i used 16 years ago... its different, but i do not do "more accurate" work because of it.

    Production artists doing photo work and color correction need accurate, calibrated monitors, but one should not assume that every designer:
    1) wants to do such work
    2) is skilled or sensitive enough to do this kind of work.

    To respond to the OP: I would go for the best laptop you can afford. My mac pro with the big screen gets used less than my laptops because of portability issues - i work on site, work on planes, on location, wherever I need to be depending on the project.

    Having a large screen to plug into is nice, but only go for a desktop if you know you will be working on projects that require the extra horsepower...
     
  12. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    #12
    Then maybe you should reconsider buying a pro-level mac in the first place...:p

    Zing!
     
  13. drichards macrumors 6502a

    drichards

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    Nov 30, 2008
    #13
    Triple your budget or so. Buy a 24in iMac and a Macbook Air. Be happy.
     
  14. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #14
    the iMac with extra RAM is probably your best bet within budget
     
  15. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #15
    He said he doesn't WANT to spend any more than $1500 "or so". He didn't say that was how much money he had to spend on a computer. ;)


    If this is a business investment, he'll probably have to pay more than $1500 to get something decent.

    Of course, a MacBook can do the job with an external monitor.
     
  16. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    #16
    Oh yes, I never actually answered your question.

    At the very least, you'll need the base 24" iMac. That's your cheapest solution (you could go for the high end 20", but I wouldn't recommend those screens to anyone doing work on a professional level), though I would strongly consider a 4core Mac Pro. A MBP would be pretty similar to the iMac.
     
  17. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    norcal
    #17
    If the OP saves a little more and gets the Macbook Pro, and I know it's still $500 over budget, but hypothetically, get the Macbook Pro and later, perhaps many months later, after saving more, get a 24" LCD of their choosing.

    That way, one has portability, and when at home where I hope most work will be done, the screen real estate.

    I still think a 20" inch iMac is pretty large but one has to see it in person, it's not all that small.
     
  18. spunklemonkey macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2008
    #18
    I personally dont see how anyone can be happy using a laptop for designing, there not really designed for that and having at least 19" screen helps with workflow speed and above all else, allows you to look at the design, not to mention you can test a site in a variety of resolutions but youll be forever designing websites using a laptops resolution and since most people have desktops you need to be careful to see how its looking for most people.

    Id say one of the most important things as a designer is using the best tool for the job and getting on with it, a laptop is and never will be the best tool to design from because there not as fast and the screen resolutions are not very good, even a 17" isnt that big.

    Id say if you really want a laptop then get one, but you should have a desktop as well. Try getting a powerful pc or a second hand imac.

    Another important point is that as a designer you end up with lots of windows open and need the extra screen space and power that a desktop has.

    (im a designer with first class degree, I made my final project on an ancient athlon 64 machine with 1gb ram, so its not really the tools, but it must be awkward on a laptop and a real pain when working with large images)
     
  19. spunklemonkey macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2008
    #19
    Ive seen top end design companies in London making top end websites on 20" imacs not 24"(yes still using the old ones) Most design companies are small and actually dont use mac pros as there not needed for web and flash based companies.

    If there into modelling and 3d modelling animation Id use a PC.

    Ive made top quality flash interactive websites on a 19" screen. The minimum should be the resolution at which most users will see your work, at the moment its still 1024x768. Its easier to work above that and then have a look at that resolution. Laptops all tend to be too small screen wise.

    Sure bigger is more useful, but its a bit strong to say 24" is minimum when most websites are not made on that screen size.
     
  20. mBox macrumors 68020

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    Jun 26, 2002
    #20
    In the evenings, I teach at a local college where its mostly 20" iMacs. At day-job Im on a Dual 30" MacPro. I also have access to a few 17" MBP. I can honestly say that Id die if I was stuck on anything less than a Dual 30" MP, but judging from students who dont have access to anything other the 20" iMacs, their work and work ethics dont seem to be hindered due to their environment. However I have a few students that are complete whiners during class cause they too have access to almost/same system as I have.
    For the price you have Id get a 20" iMac and top it off.
    If you do go further, it makes a great second computer :)
     
  21. spunklemonkey macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2008
    #21
    I personally dont want too large a screen because I feel it diverts too much from how the design will look on the users computer, so a 30" is all very well for lots of screens and stuff but as your designing you lose touch and the feel for what the user will be seeing because your screen is so large. I suppose its very much dependant on the project and how you use the monitor when its that large, but still, how often do you look at just what the user is viewing? Not that much on a mac because I guess most are using PCs :)

    anyway, laptop design is too small, im sure you can still create and award winning site in one, but your head and fingers will be annoyed at the end of it.
     
  22. simplyfab86 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #22
    Thank you all for your advice. It's greatly appreciated. I think I am going to still decide between either a 20' or 24' imac. Most of my work can be done from home. There are times when I do go away for a weekend or so and need to get work done so the laptop comes in handy. I have a 17' powerbook which I thought would be too pricey to fix.I've found an alternative so that it can now be fixed at a reasonable price. So now I can use the imac primarily and laptop for mobile purposes. Thanks again for your input:)
     
  23. spunklemonkey macrumors member

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    Dec 15, 2008
    #23
    I cart about from two houses with imac and pc, its a bit of a nightmare packing the pc up everytime, but the imac only has a few wires so its a bit easier with portability. Still a decent laptop for mobility is a great idea for some work away.
     

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