Which to buy first?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mattwallace24, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. mattwallace24 macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2010
    I've made the decision to finally switch from a PC to an iMac and MBP.

    If I bought both today, I'd probably get the following:

    27" iMac i7 8GB RAM, 2TB HDD + SSD

    15" MBP i7 8GB RAM, 500GB (7200) HDD

    Mostly casual use, but also some game play and photo editing.

    After reading forums like this for months, it can be an obsession to try and wait out Apple for the next latest thing.

    If you knew both an iMac and MBP were in your future, but didn't HAVE to buy them now, which would you buy first and when?

    My gut tells me to wait until the day the next upgrades for each are announced (hopefully Q1), but the more I wait, I wonder if its ok to buy one now to jump into the Mac world. I'm thinking buy the iMac now, as any improvements wouldn't be THAT BIG of a leap forward, but we could see some bigger changes in MBP.

    Your thoughts?
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Well, the main question is, do you need portability now? If you don't, then I would just buy the iMac now and wait for next gen MBP.
  3. waloshin macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    Second suggestion get a Mbp and a alright monitor to connect to it.

    Why do you need a Mbp and an iMac?
  4. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    I was going to ask the same question. Get a nice MBP with SSD and an external monitor. I used to have two systems and now just a MBP -- much simpler.
  5. waloshin macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    And cheaper.
  6. peoplevoice, Dec 18, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2010

    peoplevoice macrumors member

    Aug 19, 2008

    I'd buy iMac and then MBP. I'd buy now because you're planning to have in both i7. More than i7 next update? Difficult.
  7. mattwallace24 thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2010
    I have a Toshiba laptop now, so instant portability is not an issue. Eventually I'll want to get everything onto the same platform.
  8. mattwallace24 thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2010
    I probably don't NEED a MBP and iMac, but do want them. :)

    I've been working off a Toshiba laptop for the past two years connected to a nice monitor and while it has worked for me, it does have some limitations and inconveniences. Storage space on the laptop is an issue with me. I also don't like the sloppy look of my laptop on my desk with monitor cables, power cables, etc. The look of the iMac really cleans things up.

    For one, while not a pro, I take a lot of photographs, particularly underwater and at high resolution, so I've quickly run out of space. My thought is make the iMac my main photo storage and processing computer. It has better performance reviews and I can get it with both SSD and a 2TB HDD.

    The MBP would probably be overkill for what I'd use it for 90% of the time which would be web browsing, some game play, etc...but occasionally would be taken on trips where I might want to do some photo processing on the spot. With the new Air's, I've debated forgoing the MBP for one, but am hung up that the 2 weeks a year I take photo dive trips, the Air without an integrated card reader, less processing power, etc would be a drag.

    Finally, why both? I finish putting my daughter through one of the most expensive liberal arts schools in the country in a few months and think I deserve it. ;)

    So back to my original question...if you were to get both, would you wait for the next 2011 refresh on both, get one now, one after the refresh, which one first, etc.

    Thanks for everyone's help.
  9. SuperCachetes macrumors 6502a


    Nov 28, 2010
    Away from you
    You sound like one of those government agencies that is "forced" to spend the money or else they'll lose it. :rolleyes:

    I would get the iMac now, move everything of value to it and make it the "main computer" then get the new MBP in the spring/summer. This would be in line with the MR Buying Guide as well.

    However, as others have said, a 15" i7 MBP would make a heck of a standalone machine. Hook it to a Apple display, and you're done. If "instant portability" isn't an issue, don't pick the MBP up. ;)
  10. kenflynn macrumors newbie

    Dec 18, 2010
    Well it certainly doesn't sound like budget is a concern.

    All I can go by is when I first witched over and I went with an iMac at the time. The one you detail is exceptionally powerful and will blow away the basic tasks you are looking at. Similar with the MBP.

    I agree with previous poster and would consider the MBP and a separate display. It would meet both your desktop and portability needs.
  11. mattwallace24 thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2010
    Not a government agency, but after 4 years of paying $40k+ PER YEAR towards my daughter's college tuition I see the light at the end of the tunnel and it may be a Mac (or two)!

    Thanks to everyone for their feedback.

    Although I'm still leaning towards 2 computers (iMac + MBP), I'm still open to consideration. If I could find a cleaner way to have the MBP + monitor setup on my desk, it would be a more viable option. However, the way my desk is setup today, I can't hide the laptop in a drawer (and heat may be an issue anyways), so I end up with a cluttered desktop. I'd be leery of stacking a 27" monitor on top of a MBP (anyone do this?).

    Plus, and I'll finally admit it, the 27" iMac is just an awesome looking machine. Every time I pass an Apple store or see it in Best Buy, I can only stare and drool.
  12. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816


    Nov 27, 2010
    How about a MBP with an LED Cinema Display, with one of these:
    Henge Dock

    The Cinema Display uses one cable to charge the MBP, power the display, and do video, and the dock keeps it all nice and neat. Not to mention the stupidly high resolution. The only down side is the glossy display.
  13. tom vilsack macrumors 68000

    tom vilsack

    Nov 20, 2010
    ladner cdn
  14. peoplevoice macrumors member

    Aug 19, 2008

    Having two computers at home is a very good backup strategy in case one of the computers stop working. The iMac and the MBP are two completely different computers if you can have both of them, do it and congratulations. I have both and cannot be more happy.
  15. Santabean2000, Dec 19, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2010

    Santabean2000 macrumors 68000


    Nov 20, 2007
    If I were you I'd be getting a MacBook Air over a pro.

    My wife bought one recently, and having used it, I must say I'll never buy a MBP (in their current form) again.

    Seriously, with the massive iMac you're looking at, there is no need to get the i7 in the portable too.

    The MBA would give you A LOT more satisfaction for the 90% of uses you described. [You don't sound like a heavy gamer.]
  16. mattwallace24 thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2010
    Given me something to seriously consider with the MBA + iMac. Enough so that I went to the Apple Store after work to play around with the 13" MBA. I'm a cautious buyer, but at this point don't see the downside of buying the top of the line one. I do wish they made a 15" version, but it really didn't seem small. My thought process is that the MBA will give me some time to get used to Mac software/hardware prior to an iMac purchase.

    Plus, there is something to say about instant gratification. I was able to walk away from it to give me another day or two to think about it, but seriously considering the MBA + iMac (maybe wait till next release).
  17. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Oct 22, 2007
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    Get your daughter to buy you both as a (small) "Thanks!!" for everything....

    ps the buyer's guide (someone linked to it above) is probably the best information you are going to find. Everything else is 'rumours'.....

    and congratulations.....
  18. mattwallace24 thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2010
    Pulled to trigger on a 13" MBA (4GM RAM, 256 DRIVE) yesterday. My plan is to play with it during the holidays to confirm I really want to make the full leap into the Mac world before purchasing an iMac next year (as soon as the next update).

    In my first few hours of playing with it, I must say it does feel fast. The Toshiba laptop I have today has a faster processor on paper, but I believe the drive on the MBA makes up for it.

    Thanks for everyone's input. Now that I've made the leap, I'm sure I'll have a 1,000 more questions for everyone.

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