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Thread: Question for iMac/MacBook users

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    Ausphotography Regular kaiser's Avatar
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    Question for iMac/MacBook users

    Well my laptop is on it's last legs and i'm thinking of crossing to the dark side of Mac. My plan was to get the base model 13" Macbook with some extra RAM- and the 24" cinema display to hook up the MacBook at home for the more serious editing. Some questions on this: 1. Will I get the full benefit of the 24" display running through the base model 13" Macbook? ie HD resolution. 2. Will the base model MacBook be enough to run cs3/4 efficiently? 3. I've heard the new mac lcds are overly saturated- will proper calibration solve this issue in order to do accurate colour matching? Cheers, matt.
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    Matt, I'm not going to be much help on the technical side there.
    My Grandson has a macpro and he runs a seperate display without any problems and he is studying Multimedia so it must be ok.
    If you don't need a macbook why not get the imac, plenty of powerful options there and would work out cheaper perhaps.
    I have a 24" and I can calibrate very easily with a Pantone.
    Hope you can grab something from that. Might be wise to speak to Apple direct before you make that final decision.
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    Hi,
    Make sure you max out the RAM - 4GB makes a substantial differences. I don't know about the behavior of the new 24" LCDs, but the 24" iMac screen suffers from excessive brightness, not excessive saturation. The new monitors use LCD backlighting rather than fluorescent, so that might result in a difference.

    I considered a laptop but chose the iMac in the end - better bang for buck and, whilst it is an all-in-one unit, that made for better utilisation of space in my study.

    Make sure you plan your migration carefully. Some data may need to be converted on the PC before you pour it across to the Mac.

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    Thanks for the feedback. Unfortunately I was unknowingly redirected to the US Apple Store last night so here I was thinking I could get a 13" MacBook for $999 and a 24" display for $1099
    Now that I'm working in real dollars my theory has lost a lot of its momentum. The portability of a laptop is fairly important as I tend to travel a fair bit and use the computer at work.
    If it wasn't for that then I'd definitely be going straight for the 24" iMac.
    So I could either go for the baseline MBP for $3199 or;
    Base 13" MB and the 24" Cinema display for about the same $$. Second option seems good as I get portability when I need it and screen real estate when I need it.
    Now just a matter of deciding whether the slightly different specs of the two (graphics card, processor) will make a real difference in performace.

    To be honest I'm not even sure if I will purchase CS3/4 yet. Will be running Nikon's NX2 and I'm still trying to get my head around the difference between Aperture and Lightroom. I know theres a few threads on here about that so I will have to do some reading today.

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    Argh - I've run into another dilemma. If I plan to run a 2nd display from the lappy, the base model MB may drag down system performance with its lower end graphics card. So that would mean I'm looking at a MacBook Pro - more $$$

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    is this going to be a 2-computer solution? iMac plus low-end laptop? Sounds like your costs are increasing rapidly...

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    Thinking now a mid range MacBook with a dell or nec 24" display. They seem to be getting great reviews for colour accuracy etc.

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    Another PC user realising the error of their ways, thank the Lord. ONLY JOKING!!!!

    If you get the mid level MacBook, you will be very impressed with the performance. If you're not really working in 3D land, I think that you can give the MBP a miss to be honest.

    I'm a MacBook (BlackBook) user and I have never had problems with the speed of CS3 or anything else for that matter. An NEC, Dell or even Samsung display that you've calibrated will also likely meet your needs.

    The bottom line:

    IMHO if you go for the 13" MB, get the mid-level one or better. If your budget will stretch, throw in the 24" display. Otherwise get the other brands mentioned above. Either way, you won't regret moving to Mac.
    Cheers!

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    The only tech difference I can see between the mac 13" white and black is a slight boost in CPU speed and ddr2 to ddr3 ram. They all have the 9400m shared graphics. Given that ram is easily upgraded is the slightly faster CPU going to make a difference? The higher end 13" MacBook is getting close to MacBook pro price range.

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    If you need the portability get a mid-range MacBook (max RAM - NOT FROM APPLE - too expensive) and a nice 24" display. As you say it is about the same price as the MacBook Pro. My brother uses an old white low-end MacBook on a 23" display and it runs fine.

    I would only go for the Pro if you need the graphics performance - not sure about performance gains using NX or Lightroom - google some benchmarks, they may not be as significant as you might think. I am running a Pro on a 23" Cinema Display and it's great having the desktop at home and the portability when you need it.

    A good option is the refurbished models in the Apple online store - saves you quite a bit and you can get one of the new unibody models, which are sweet. They come with full warranty.

    As for Aperture vs Lightroom - whole 'nother issue I was using NX 2 and still do sometimes, but Lightroom is great for photo management and development.

    Good luck!

    FYI refurbished 2GHz unibody MacBook is $1799 - new is $2099 (from here)

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    Thanks for all the feedback so far. My budget is around the $2k mark so a MacBook Pro with a quality 24" is over 3k. Deciding between the white & black MacBook models and here's what I've found: white MB can be had for $1299 refurbished, has a couple of extra ports (1 x FireWire 400?, black MB only has 2 USB and that's it), ddr2 ram, duller non led backlit screen. Black MB $1639 refurbished. Aluminum unibody, ddr3 ram, led backlit screen, only 2 USB ports for connectivity. Both models have the same nVidia 9400M 256mb shared graphics. So far as I can tell the $500 price premium for the black MB you get a nicer screen, case, slightly bigger HDD, backlit keyboard and slightly faster ram. So performance wise they should be pretty close? Am I missing anything? Only having 2 USB ports is pretty stingy especially for desktop connectivity. No FireWire or eSATA . Sorry for the bad paragraphing- I'm typing on an iPhone

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    I have an iMac with a ViewSonic mionitor attached, I found the glossy screen very hard to work on, although images look stunning they aren't that accurate even calibrated, the performance though is great with 4GB RAM, I have two external HD one for back up and one for data, I don't keep any data on the iMac HD, CS4 runs like a dream and I can have quite a few progams running at the same time without loss of power. Shop around for prices, if you are in Sydney let me know and I will put you onto the suppliers that I have been using for years. Margaret
    Margaret

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    New iMacs are rumored to be out very soon also - resellers seem to be low on stocks and not replacing with current iMac line. Maybe a slight increase in specs and hopefully the new Mac OSX Snow Leopard

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaiser View Post
    New iMacs are rumored to be out very soon also - resellers seem to be low on stocks and not replacing with current iMac line. Maybe a slight increase in specs and hopefully the new Mac OSX Snow Leopard
    Yes i am hanging for this also. After recently splashing out on a lowest end 20" iMac since i was kind of desperate to get away from windows, i'm now looking forward to a newer 24" with spec refresh. Hopefully within the next few weeks. Heres hoping anyway. Only solid evidence that they are coming is, as you said, very very low stock levels of current model ones, across a lot of stores. I know for a fact my local JB, i completely out.
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    maybe there will be a chance the new imac's will have a matte display option too...
    worth thinking about.

    my vote is a uni-body macbook + the 23inch Apple Cinema Display (matte), its not LED backlit... but its a very well rounded monitor. S-IPS panel is fantastic.. and its proven to calibrate very accurately - I was very close on purchasing the 24inch LED Apple Display... but its just not accurate

    The NEC 24inch WUXI is a better monitor with more inputs for the same price as the apple but then it may not match your notebook...
    C & C always welcome / Matte Mac User / Leica M2 - M8 - 28mm 2.8 Elmarit ASPH / Voigtlander 35mm 2.5 Skopar / Sony NEX-5 - 16mm 2.8 - 18-55 Kit - A mount adaptor - 30mm Macro / Rayqual E-mount to Leica M adaptor

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