Which Setup Do You Think Would Be Better?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by 160225, Dec 14, 2008.

  1. 160225 Guest


    Feb 8, 2008
    Hi. I was thinking of getting a new MBP with all the upgrades, and than someone gave me a suggestion. The idea was that instead of an MBP, get a MacBook and an iMac. This way, I have a nice desktop to use, and a laptop for portability. I would create a VPN to the iMac, and also use ACTS, since it is faster than VNC (my internet is 12/2, so its a pretty solid connection).

    I will be going to college in one and a half years, so that is an important factor. I currently have a PowerBook (specs in my profile info, look at bottom of post), which runs Dreamweaver. Fireworks, and Flash pretty decently for the system. I would need those, plus Photoshop and Illustrator, and the other not so intensive apps, like iWork. I'm not big on video editing, but I do want to learn Cocoa and work in Xcode. The portable system I get now will probably be the system I take to college. Anything I absolutely need that won't run on my MB, I will use through ACTS to my iMac, but that selection should be limited, if it even exists.

    As for gaming, I do once in a while (I'm not a huge gamer), and the games I would put on the MB aren't that graphics intensive. I would use the iMac for most of my games anyways.

    This setup is only a few hundred dollars more, which seems like a lot, but I am getting 2 systems, one (MB) a little under the MBP and the iMac, which would be equal to or better (spec-wise). I need a system to carry around, but I also like a system I can always have on, but it's not neccesary. Any, and all, systems I get will have a copy of Windows 2008 Server Enterprise Edition installed, only because that is what I have for Windows. Not actually using for a server. I plan on having 4GB of RAM on both systems if I go with that setup, and a VM may be used once in a while for testing (also use Parallels to boot from BootCamp partition when just need Windows for something quick.)
  2. airjuggernaut macrumors 6502a

    Oct 16, 2007
    I vote MBP, with any 20"++ external display.

    The MBP is more than Powerful enough for all the stuff you mentioned, even gaming is supposedly decent.

    What kind of games do you play anyways?

    If you REALLY are worried about gaming, then get the iMac and MB.
  3. rick3000 macrumors 6502a


    May 6, 2008
    West Coast
    I am a similar situation. I currently have an eMac and iBook and will be going to college next year. I am torn between getting an iMac (to use w/ my current iBook) or a MBP w/ an external display.
    With an iMac you get a lot more for less, and then you can use your current laptop to carry around, beat up and take notes on.

    But I am seriously leaning toward getting just a MBP instead. Here are my reasons:
    -ExpressCard so you can have an eSata Connection
    -It is simpler to have 1 computer, because you don't have to sync everything
    -Right now the MBP can be configured to 2.8Ghz the iMac tops out at 2.6Ghz for the 20" (but this may change after Macworld)
    -You can hook the MBP up to an external monitor if you need the screen real estate
    -Easier to take your files with you, especially when you travel home (try lugging an iMac home at Christmas or every weekend)
  4. 160225 thread starter Guest


    Feb 8, 2008
    This would be a non issue for me. I would keep the iMac at my house, and on it, install Leopard Server edition. I would than configure the MacBook as a portable computer with a Mobile Account from the server, with a local copy of my home folder on the MB and on the server. What happens is that I will create a VPN to my house, so that all I have to do is connect, and both home folders will sync themselves automatically (or only certain folders I select). Since the account is mobile, when I am at home, it logs into the domain account (authenticates against the server), but it caches the login information so that I can login anywhere.
  5. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

    Oct 21, 2008
    Why not just buy a top-shelf iMac and keep your Powerbook for portability needs? Maybe invest in a new battery if it needs it.
  6. 160225 thread starter Guest


    Feb 8, 2008
    Because I am getting to the point where I need Windows on all the machines I have, including my portable.
  7. jackiecanev2 macrumors 65816


    Jul 6, 2007
    Are you set on buying one now? Because if you're concerned about college, I'd suggest waiting as long as possible. What you buy this year will be somewhat dated in by the fall of 2010; that goes for both machines. Scrape by on your powerbook, or even grab a new macbook now. Trade up when you go to college, for a new portable or portable/desktop combo and see what your options are when the time comes.
  8. sangosimo Guest


    Sep 11, 2008
  9. soLoredd macrumors 6502a

    Mar 12, 2007
    I vote MBP and just utilize an external monitor when at home. Personally, I don't see the need for 2 computers if your laptop is just as (if not more than) powerful than the home computer. Just slap an external on that badboy when at home and you're set.
  10. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020


    Apr 5, 2004
    Huntsville, AL
    Seconded. Buy the best portable you can afford, then add a nice LCD (I'm partial to Dell's displays lately) and a large external hard drive for backups.

    If you use time machine, get *two* drives. Use Time Machine on one, but make regular bootable backups (I use SuperDuper!) on the other. The bootable backup will be a lifesaver if your system crashes the night before a huge assignment is due.
  11. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    I would get one computer. The one computer system is much easier to maintain and keep track of files. I recently went from having a MBA (gen 1), MBP (v 2,2), and a Dell M70 Precision Laptop; I commonly had problems of the wrong file being updated and trying to go back and get a file when working on different computer. I now have ONE computer with everything. It is so much easier ensuring I always have the latest file in front of me. And, these MB, MBP, and even the new MBA, have plenty of power to do everything and they all three can drive up to a 30" Apple Cinema Display now. The new Nvidia Graphics with mini Display Port is really a great deal. You don't have to spend that much either as the new Apple Cinema Displays. I bought a Viewsonic to last til I have the budget money in January to get the Apple Display. I am actually going to go with the MBA in January and use it with a new Apple Cinema Display. It is plenty of computer and super portable. As long as no gaming is required, you should even consider it.

    Good luck and Happy Holidays.
  12. geoffreak macrumors 68020


    Feb 8, 2008
    You can't beat a MacBook Pro. If you really want two computers, go with a MBP and a Mac Mini as your server.
  13. ACiB708 macrumors regular

    Apr 6, 2008
    I think that if your going to college in 1 1/2 years, the high-end MBP would be the way to go since it will last longer being completely usable. Bang for the buck. What I mean is that if you get 2 computers, instead of one they would be lower end, and their usable lifetime would be shorter so by the time you get to college they'll be slow, but that would not happen if you get the hi-end MBP. Besides, Macbook Pros are beautiful.

Share This Page