Which Mac to buy?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by aj8973, Jan 31, 2008.

  1. aj8973 macrumors newbie

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    Jan 31, 2008
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    UK
    #1
    Hi Guys,

    I've never owned a Mac before but have decided to get one as I'm a Multimedia student who is doing video encoding, sound editing & graphic design.

    The big question for me is do I get an iMac, or a MBP?
    I had pretty much decided on a MBP but the iMac's are a hell of a lot cheaper for more or less the same power, not to mention the larger screen size. There are a few things on my mind though that maybe you can help me clear up. iMacs only come with a glossy screen option, I've heard this sucks for design & photography which I'll be doing a lot of. Also, I'm concerned about the MBP's not being about to display "Millions of colours" as advertised. There is a whole site devoted to this issue. As you probably know, Macs are a hell of a lot cheaper in the U.S. (Lucky buggers), but my sister is going there for some shopping in two weeks meaning I have a chance to save about $250 dollars if she picks it up. Or should I wait until this new Penryn chip update? I really need the machine sooner then later though.

    Thanks a lot guys. Looking forward to working on an Apple machine.
     
  2. mortalvic macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #2
    If you don't need the portability I would get the iMac. Neither screens will be fabulously accurate for design work. You can always get an external monitor.

    I hate the glossy screen of the iMac, but the speed gains and extra upgrade possibilities are better. I used a MacBook Pro for a while the second last generation. It drove me crazy comparing it to my desktop.

    If you have the bucks for a laptop I would try and snag a refurb Mac Pro and pick up a decent monitor - S-IPS type panel like the Apple Cinema Displays or the Dell 2005FWP. I have the dell and have been pretty happy with it - rotates to portrait mode which has been great for some photo editing work.

    Other option is to pick up a refurb white iMac - no glossy screens! Good luck
     
  3. BlueZombie macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2008
    #3
    If you NEED portability, get the MBP. If not, the better choice IMO is the iMac. If you feel the screen isn't good for your graphics/photography work, you can always go dual monitor with a better display for your needs. I do graphics work, but not for print, and I absolutely love the iMac screen.
     
  4. aj8973 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 31, 2008
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    UK
    #4
    I don't super need the portability, however it would be handy for taking to Uni & also bringing around to clients. I have a HP Pav Notebook but the screen is really glossy and things look a bit distorted on it. I thought the anti-glare was the best for graphics work, but you reckon a Dell Screen? I'm trying to get away from the PC :p

    I live in the UK but travel back to my native Ireland sometimes, I mean, The iMac is small enough that I could protect it with bubble wrap and a hard case during the flight; Or is this a terrible idea?

    Cheers guys.
     
  5. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #5
    Yes.

    And you can get transport cases for iMacs, for flights and the like. Let's see...

    http://www.4allmemory.com/search/upgrades/carrying-cases/ilugger.cfm?q=iLugger

    Here's the popular iLugger. It's not a hard case, so... sue the airline if they damage it.... Hmm... I'm reading that there's a hard plastic layer in between the innermost and outermost fabrics... Well, that's good.

    http://www.casesbypelican.com/computers/apple-imac-24.htm

    Here. The Pelican case. They even have one that can hold a Mac Pro and 30" Cinema Display. Sheer protection. And of course, there are a variety of MacBook Pro cases...
     
  6. tersono macrumors 68000

    tersono

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #6
    As the owner of a 17" Macbook Pro, I still have to say that I agree with most of the comments above. If you don't NEED portability, then the iMac is most definitely the way to go - it's a far better general workhorse than any portable. Ultimately, it's going to be down to how much mobility is worth to you...
     
  7. aj8973 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    Thanks guys. The case looks pretty nice as well.

    I've been watching some YouTube videos on the iMac and I have to say the glossiness scares me a bit. Good graphics for photographs and multimedia apps are really important to me, this is the one big thing that is affecting my decision.

    Why can't they make the iMac with the matte display :(
     
  8. Father Jack macrumors 68020

    Father Jack

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2007
    Location:
    Ireland
    #8
    If absolutely true color is essential, don't go glossy
     
  9. aj8973 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    OK, MacBook Pro it is!

    But should I wait until the new Penryn chips are released in the Macs? I don't wanna wait for a few months and put up with potential first release problems. But if it's really worth the wait... I would.
     
  10. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    That there big London
    #10
    Yes, you will save a bit of money. But have you factored-in US Sales Tax (which you might not be able to claim back), the VAT you'll pay on re-entry to the UK, putting up with a US keyboard and a US mains plug, and what the warranty implications will be?

    You're also gonna get pretty pissed off lugging an iMac back and forth on the plane between Edinburgh and Ireland. Sounds like you need a Matte 15" MacBookPro - maybe a refurb - then maybe get big external monitor too when you've saved up a bit more cash. Sure the iMac gives you "more" but the MBP will be have plenty enough grunt for what you need (although you may want to max out the hard drive and RAM).

    Good luck
    SL
     
  11. aj8973 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    UK
    #11
    Ahh U.S. sales tax, this is charged on after a sale like VAT, but not included in the retail price? U.S. Keyboard and stuff, hmm yeah.

    I'll just buy it on Educational discount here from my Uni. Thanks a lot for that advice man, you rock. Will buy RAM separately for just 28 pounds for 2 GB's, and I can stick 4 GB's in right? hehe that's gonna be nice.
     
  12. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    That there big London
    #12
    I don't actually know the ins & outs of buying a US Mac for use in Europe... so you may be right to go ahead. Just that in my experience with that sort of thing usually end up saving less than you think and get more aggro in return (unless you're buying Adobe stuff, where the UK-US price differential is scandalous). Do your research carefully.

    Your MBP will come with two 1GB sticks - so to upgrade to 4GB you'll need to replace those with two 3rd party 2GB sticks - which sucks somewhat but 56 quid is still a pretty good price. Alternatively, just stick with 2GB for now, you might just find it's enough for you (but you'd be gutted if memory prices went up in the future).

    SL
     
  13. aj8973 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 31, 2008
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    UK
    #13
    I think you're right anyway, it's not worth the hassle and might end up costing me more. I'll stick with the U.K. model.

    This is the RAM. The cost for 4GB's is 56 pounds, not bad at all eh.


    So the only question is, to wait for the MBP hardware upgrades, or get it now?

    :cool::apple:
     
  14. danuff macrumors member

    danuff

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Location:
    Allentown, Pennsylvania
    #14
    Which computer to buy?

    Hi,
    From one college student to another, get the MacBook Pro (if you can afford it). It'll save you from having to transfer your projects from either one computer to another, or from a memory stick to a computer. Better to have your projects all on one computer (with backups of course!)

    My 2 cents,
    Dan
     
  15. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

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    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    That there big London
    #15
    Personally I'd wait a couple of Tuesdays if possible. But the question has been discussed to death on here!

    Good luck!
    SL
     
  16. aj8973 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 31, 2008
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    UK
    #16
    I'll read the other threads, thanks for your help!
     
  17. panda macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2004
    #17
    double take

    my view???

    1) get your gf to buy a macbook in the US and save some money vs buying in the UK. now you have a porty to take around with you.

    2) also buy an imac... in the UK.

    put the price of the 2 together and you will find it is about equal to buying ONE mbp.

    whaddyathink?

    ---oh and you will love mac:)
     
  18. panda macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2004
  19. mortalvic macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #19
    Here are a few links for you to check out...

    this one gives you an idea of the performance based on processor and memory alone of the different mac models. Ranging from 100 to 8500 ratings with MBP hitting below the median.
    http://www.primatelabs.ca/blog/2007/12/mac-performance-december-2007/

    Whatever you buy - check out OtherWorld Computing for memory upgrades. Highly recommend them. They offer rebates on the your oem memory.
    http://eshop.macsales.com/money-back-rebate/macbook-memory-harddrive-hd

    If you decide on the MBP there is a great refurb available on apple.com or apple.ca at least. HD resolution 17 inch http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/canadastore.woa/wa/RSLID?nplm=FB077LL/A

    Another excellant site for info is barefeats.com
     

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