Advice please- For Graphic Design/Illustration/Photoshop: iMac or .... ?

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Hi guys, newbie from New York here.

I posted this in another Mac forum since I'm trying to make a decision and need feedback from real users.

Well, I have been thinking about taking classes of Digital Imaging/Graphic Design to make a switch in my advertising career, and I'd have to get a MAC, since that is the standard for the Industry, everywhere. I've been a PC user for years



I have been thinking about getting the new iMac for this. My budget is not unlimited and i don't have a "mom" who can pay for my toys (I'm an adult you know, living in the real world), so at the very-very most, I could spend US$ 1,500 and that's it. So, I'd buy the cheapest new iMac or maybe -if I save a bit more- the following one ($1,500 in the US)



What I want to know is: Should I go with an iMac, or should I try to save a bit more to get a Mac Pro?

I really don't care about "mobility" for a career like this, so don't need a Mac laptop.



I am just wondering if an iMac is good enough for Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesing, you know, all the Adobe CS3 suite. Also Quark, since that is another standard for the industry.

I am not interested in the professional Video Editing/Video Production. Maybe I'd try to edit a short home video and that's it.



Could you guys give me some feedback on this? I'd really appreciate it.



P.S: I don't mind buying an used Mac Pro, but for the iMac i'd prefer it to be new.

Thanks!

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    buddhabuddha Posts: 386member
    Right now the Mac Pros are somewhat overpriced (they are overdue for an update but I doubt we'll see one until the new year). Unless you're into video editing I would say an iMac would be the smarter choice. If screen size isn't too much of an issue get the 20" unfortunately a lot of graphic designers prefer larger screens (like the 24"). Whichever model you get I highly recommend getting 2GB of ram.
  • Reply 2 of 10
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tripo11 View Post


    Could you guys give me some feedback on this? I'd really appreciate it.



    P.S: I don't mind buying an used Mac Pro, but for the iMac i'd prefer it to be new.

    Thanks!



    iMac should be fine. You could also look to the Apple refurbished ones to get a price break. Extra memory would help if you went that way (and you can get that from an outside source to save a good chunk of change -- many listed in discussions here on AI), for the larger files you might end up working with can use it. Also, if you go for a smaller iMac, you can always add a second monitor later for more work space if you want. When huge bucks start rolling in, you can always move up to a Mac Pro with double 30" monitors.
  • Reply 3 of 10
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,217moderator
    Make sure you like glossy screens because that's all you get with an iMac now. I reckon the ideal computer for you would be the computer a lot of us want Apple to make but don't and that is a small tower between a Mini and Mac Pro. That way you can choose the best display(s) for your needs.



    If you're ok with glare then the iMac might be fine, if not try a used iMac or a Mac Pro. I think the Mac Pro is far too big but it is certainly a powerful machine. I have seen iMacs struggle with high resolution animations whereas the Mac Pro just sails through them.



    I don't think either option is ideal though so it's really a lesser of two evils affair. Given that the workload may be light, I'd sway towards the iMac but if you don't like glossy, it has to be a tower because Apple don't like to give people options.
  • Reply 4 of 10
    thanks guys.



    Now, what do you think about iMacs and their heat? I have read that they tend to over heat, and since I want to use it for long hours, with intensive software, I don't want it to freeze/crash.



    I understand that due their design they do get hot, but I wonder if that is a major problem or not.
  • Reply 5 of 10
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tripo11 View Post


    Now, what do you think about iMacs and their heat? I have read that they tend to over heat, and since I want to use it for long hours, with intensive software, I don't want it to freeze/crash.



    The iMacs and heat? I've not heard of that. As far as I know the iMac(Intel) is the most reliable Mac available.
  • Reply 6 of 10
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,217moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tripo11 View Post


    thanks guys.



    Now, what do you think about iMacs and their heat? I have read that they tend to over heat, and since I want to use it for long hours, with intensive software, I don't want it to freeze/crash.



    I understand that due their design they do get hot, but I wonder if that is a major problem or not.



    That was the G5 iMacs. This is one reason Apple switched to Intel because IBM couldn't make their chips cool enough for laptops, which the iMac essentially is.
  • Reply 7 of 10
    yamayama Posts: 427member
    I have one of the new iMacs, and I let it run overnight, transcoding video. It never overheats, and it certainly hasn't crashed yet



    Both cores will be chugging along at 80-90% CPU usage and I don't even hear the fans on the damn thing. Mind you, I haven't tried stessing out the graphics card in any way because I don't play games much these days.
  • Reply 8 of 10
    pevepeve Posts: 518member
    i'm in design too



    at home i got a imac g5 1.8 ghz

    all adobe cs3 apps run good enough



    at work i had a intel imac

    adobe cs2 was a big speed-problem -> adobe cs3 is a must



    and no - heat is no problem
  • Reply 9 of 10
    thank you for taking your time to help me.



    So, I just want to be sure that for this type of work an expensive graphic card isn't that necessary, right?

    I have read the specs for the new iMacs, and besides the amount of memory, I don't know the difference between the two of them.



    Like I said, I don't intend to play games or edit hours of professional video so is that "basic" graphic card good enough?
  • Reply 10 of 10
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tripo11 View Post


    thank you for taking your time to help me.



    So, I just want to be sure that for this type of work an expensive graphic card isn't that necessary, right?

    I have read the specs for the new iMacs, and besides the amount of memory, I don't know the difference between the two of them.



    Like I said, I don't intend to play games or edit hours of professional video so is that "basic" graphic card good enough?



    I would get the 2.4 ghz model and the x2600 gpu. You can get either the 24" or the 20'" in that configuration.
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