Which setup do you prefer?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jharvey71884, Jul 14, 2014.

  1. jharvey71884 macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2011
    So it's been a long couple of months for me trying to upgrade my computers and what not, but almost done. Wondering the setup you would prefer?

    What I will be using it for: Currently I'm a sports reporter, so I'm out in the field a lot. Edit a lot of interviews in Final Cut Pro (but nothing taxing) and also take a lot of photos and edit in Lightroom. In addition, I'm starting to take classes from TeamTreeHouse.com and am getting into more front end web design.

    Option #1: I currently have a late 2013 Macbook Pro with 8gb of ram and the 128 SSD. I keep it and get an Mac Mini i7, decking it out to 256SSD and 16gb of ram.

    Total cost w/ monitor: $1350

    Option #2: I sell my 13' Macbook Pro, I have a standing offer of $1275 and I get a 15 Macbook Pro refurbished with 16GB of ram and 512 SSD. (http://store.apple.com/us/product/G...-20ghz-quad-core-intel-i7-with-retina-display) I would then get a 27 inch monitor as well.

    Total cost after selling my computer and getting monitor: $1100

    So either I get a 13 inch Macbook Pro and Mac mini or 15 inch Macbook Pro.
  2. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Jul 1, 2004
    I have no experience with the type of work you do, but the bold section above is a great reason to go with a single-computer setup. Go for the 15" and you'll save a lot of time not shuffling files back and forth.
  3. phrehdd macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2008
    Consider if you take your laptop out and it gets damaged..what will you do to keep working?
  4. mad3inch1na macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2013
    As a general rule of thumb, having a single computer is much more convenient than having two systems. I would recommend the 15" as long as you don't mind the extra weight. It is a beautiful computer, and it will perform much better than a Mac Mini.

    You will get performance at the cost of weight. That is only a choice you can make.

  5. Th3taJ macrumors member


    Jul 14, 2014
    Milford, NH
    So far the general consensus is go with the MacBook Pro 15", but I can't help but worry about the wear and tear of the device since you're out in the field often. If you don't absolutely need a laptop available when you're out in the field, I would suggest the Mac-Mini with a monitor. You can then keep your current MacBook Pro for the occasions that you do need a laptop out in the field.
  6. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    I'd go with the 15" as well. I assume for the 27" monitor you aren't getting an Apple branded one. You should get one that is 2560x1440 resolution or better for more workspace. Whether you stick with 1080 or go 1440 I'd get one that uses an IPS panel not TN for greater color accuracy. Given your uses.

    Laptops don't really get any wear and tear out on the field. It's not like your using it to dig with, smack flies, &c. You keep them in a protective bag when carrying around then take it out when you're sitting down. My 2006 Macbook is still going strong and it's been all over the place.
  7. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I would keep the 13 in MBP and add the Mini. It gives you a second Mac. You can always go back and add more SSD or RAM to your existing MBP. Once you go Retina you are done doing upgrades and must get a new Retina MBP to get more RAM or internal storage.

    I do a modest amount of video editing in iMovie on my late 2011 15 in MBP with 750 GB SSD and 8 GB of RAM. No sweat. I do some of the same on my wife's late 2010 Mac mini with 8GB of RAM and 500 GB SSD. Very little sweat. I manage about half a terabyte of photos in iPhoto (with import to iPhoto Library turned off). Again no sweat on either machine (with the photos stored on an external firewire drive or a network drive).

    I have not played with FCP or Aperture (which is EOL'd). Again I would err on the side of having a "road" and an "office" machine so if one of them goes down you can still meet your deadlines. Another thing to consider is to put your "home folder" on dropbox and cough up the $99 a year it costs for a 100 GB dropbox. I'm still too cheap to do that so I have an almost daily battle deleting stuff to avoid blowing through my dropbox quota but still keep important files accessible from all my iThings.
  8. spatlese44 macrumors 6502

    Dec 13, 2007
    My wife and I are on opposite sides of this. She has a 15" MBP and I have a 13" MB and a 2012 Mac Mini. She is an English professor and a writer and absolutely wants the 15" screen for what she does and wants the portability and to have a single machine. I'm forced to use a windows box at work, but once a month I'm the secretary for a car club and take notes for our meetings, which is fine on my 13" screen. Beyond that the laptop is for light internet and a smattering of other tasks. The 13" is a nice size, especially as I travel a lot with it. When I want to do programming, I want a desktop with a big screen and a keyboard and trackpad that aren't locked to the screen. Both laptops are 7 years old and need replacing soon and we'll probably each get the same size machines as we had.

    BTW, wife writes poetry and uses a strange device for most of her work: paper. By the time she types it into the MBP it's 80% done.
  9. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    I've gone the two computer route for the past dozen years, but I'm tired of the synchronization issues. The next round of purchases will be a 15" MBP that I can dock (27" monitor, standard keyboard and mouse) at home.

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