View Full Version : Type of Mac?

04-17-2006, 10:20 PM
I plan to get a mac notebook of some sort for when I go to art school. Which type of mac do you suggest?

04-18-2006, 12:15 AM
You might want to cross post this over to the Computers & technology forum as well

04-18-2006, 11:48 AM
Need more info, what is your major? What exactly will you be using it for?

04-19-2006, 07:25 AM
Communications Design
I'll be using it for PS, Flash, etc.

04-20-2006, 12:54 AM
The new Macbook Pro would be my choice. But it all depends on your budget. If its not in your budget look in one of the last of the remaining PowerBooks, there is some good deals to be had on the remaining stock of PowerBooks.

04-22-2006, 03:51 AM
Before you buy anything, see what the school says. For example, the School of Art at my university recommends that we not buy a computer until acceptance into upper division programs (spring of sophomore year/fall of junior year) because the specs required change so dramatically over those first two years and labs are available for use by all students.

If that's the case at your school - it's almost to the point where it's impractical to not have a computer your first two years of college, but you can definitely skimp on the specs now and buy a quality machine your junior year. Also, check to see what your school bookstore carries; they may have excellent student discounts or an extensive warranty exclusive to computers bought through them. For example, one of my friends somehow managed to dump a fishbowl, complete with fish, on her school-bought laptop and they fixed it, no questions asked. That could be pretty handy. ;)

04-22-2006, 06:00 PM
DO NOT BOU A COMPUTER UNTIL YOU CHECK WITH YOUR SCHOOL! Did I scream this loud enough. Different schools have differing requirements. I can't emphasize this enough.

04-23-2006, 01:53 AM
I am a design major, we use g5's, although i do know a g4 can run the software- i have an imac, the advice i was given was to get the most ram and hardrive space you can afford- the other thing to check is the apple website has student discounts- so once you find out what the college recommends, be sure to check them out. Also check on refurbished macs- if you go to the macfixit.com forum you can get lots of pointers. hope that helps- be sure to check with your adviser though


05-21-2006, 09:32 AM
Either platform will do, Mac or PC, however the graphic design industry largely runs Macs, and it is very likely that a Visual Communications or Graphic Design department will also use Macs. However, you should contact the college to double-check. Still, the new Intel-chip Macs can run both the Mac operating system and Windows. The Windows feature is still in public beta, meaning that it can be utilized by the public, but that there may be bugs. Apple plans to make their systems fully bootable and compliant with Windows soon enough. So, if you get a Mac, you can run both platforms.

Laptop or tower? Tower models tend to have larger harddrives, better video cards and can handle more RAM, and the more RAM the better. Most laptops max out at 2 GB of RAM which is pretty darn good, but I coouldn't work on some multimedia projects w/o the 4 GB on my G5. The newest G5s can load up to 16 GB of RAM. For G.D. work including Flash-based projects, 2 GB of RAM is sufficient. If you are editing video, you will benefit by more and I recommend a tower. However, for the college environment, I recommend a laptop you can bring to the library, etc. Most campuses are wireless these days.

One nice thing about laptops or powerbooks if the limitations on RAM and harddrive space are not a problem for you is that you can hook them up to a second monitor. I have used a 15-inch powerbook with a 20 inch LCD display. Macs do this better than PCs - or at least, it is easier to set up I believe. Be aware that not all laptops/powerbooks and monitors are compatible and some need adapters that can cost as much as $90 so do a little research.

Bottom line for G.D. or photography or web design? The 15-inch MacBook Pro (intel chip) is an amazing system and perfect for your needs. If you can, get 2 GB of RAM and a 20-inch display to use at home. You will also have the benefit of being able to boot up Windows.

If you are into video or high end 3-D animation, wait for Apples Intel-based towers so that you can use Apple -only software like Final Cut Pro and Shake as well as boot up with Windows if necessary.