iMac or MacBook?


**Thanks in part to Martha’s (Rob’s Wife) previous thread, hubby and I have decided that our next computer will be a Mac. Now, help us decide between a desktop or a laptop!!! Please:)

I am leaning towards a laptop because I like the portability (great with a baby at home, lol) and he is leaning towards the desktop because it is more powerful.

What do you think?



I’m going to tell you to wait on any decisions until after tomorrow’s “steve-note” (a Keynote address by Apple CEO Steve Jobs) at the world wide developers conference (WWDC). There is a rumor going around that the iMac will see a major revision and form factor change.
Personally, I like the portability of a notebook. I have an iBook now, but in about a year I’m going to be upgrade to a MacBook Pro.
Do you have a wireless network in your house? That is what makes the notebook really portable.

I’ll let you know what Steve says tomorrow.

Yours in Christ,


What are you planning on using it for? Just basic day to day things? Or is your husband looking to do something more extensive with it and thats why he wants a faster computer? I 'd go here to do some research and see what people likethis is Apple’s forum for their software,hardware, etc.

Personally for me, screen size is a big factor for me so I’d either go with the Mac Book Pro or the imac. I use a Mac for work and I love it. But my setup is proably vastly different than most people on this forum:)

Whatever you get make sure you get their Apple care plan. I don’t usually recommend warranties, but for them I do. Only because, there not that many places that do computer work on Macs if something goes wrong.

Another big factor for me with a laptop is that its a little more “fragile” than a desktop.


While I have no physical evidence, yet, I’m fairly certain Steve Jobs is the devil incarnate. :smiley:


I have an ‘older’ powerbook and love the portability, not having to be tied to one spot in the house. Wireless is built in, but you have to buy a base station.

At some point I will get a desktop for the kids, but for now the laptop does everything I need it to do.

As far as laptop vs. desktop “power” goes - unless you are doing some high level photoshop or video work, you won’t go wrong by getting a laptop. It will do the basics plus you will be able to download your photos and movies with decent speed.


I’m still leaning toward the iMac.

I like the portability of the macbook, but since everything is built into the iMac, it’s somewhat portable as well. Unlike our current conglomeration of wires, giant tower, moniter, speakers, mic, and modem. If we get a wireless router, which we would need for the macbook anyway, we would just have to unplug the iMac, pick it up, and move it somewhere else in the house. The only thing else we would have to move would be the keyboard and mouse, which if we got the wireless ones wouldn’t be that bad. Besides, i’ve heard from people with laptops that they still prefer using a mouse because it’s easier to control than that little pad on the actual laptop.

Again, the bigger screen and bigger hard drive are really winning me over to the iMac since my iPod takes up around 30 gigs of space through iTunes anyway. That, plus I still want the option of running windows for some programs that may not be compatible with OS X, which again will eat up more space. Plus the ability to have more power is always a bonus. Even if we don’t think we’ll be doing any high end video or graphics intensive projects any time soon, it’s always good to have the ability to do them in the future. Especially after seeing all the things that can be done with iLife. One has to say that the reason we may not do any projects like that now is because we can’t, but again, iLife would make that easier. I just don’t like limiting myself right off the bat.

That being said, I still really like the macbook. However, I see it as a future addition as opposed to our sole computer in the house. I guess we could just keep the PC and get the macbook as a second computer, but I think my wife would agree that we don’t want to keep that monster, at least not where it is now, and we don’t really have the space to put it anywhere else.


Here’s the big deciding factor:
Do you play any 3D games?

If yes, you need the iMac with a dedicated graphics card built in. (the lowest end one may not have this)

If no, you should choose based on how much portability you need. Personally I find the iMac to be a great computer, but for real portability I need a laptop. To get the 3D graphics that I need (for games and game development), I had to buy the MacBook Pro (which has a dedicated graphics card).


I’ll share what I currently use doing high end video, graphics and photoshop.

I have a Mac G5 (Dual 2.5 Ghz) with about 3.5 SDRAM. We also use 2 SCSI (Medea Raid) external with about 766.90 GB on each one.

Now obviously this is more than you need, but if you plan to do any video, photo or music work. I highly recommend getting a very large hard drive, because video takes up a lot of room.:slight_smile:

I have a 24 inch Cinema screen and I love it.


According to my boyfriend, who currently owns an iMac and a MacBookPro, they are apparently the same in terms of stats/power. The iMac is incredible portable, for a desktop. It’s all in one compact design. So unless you want to take it to take notes in class, it’s portable, no worries. Only the computer, the keyboard, and the mouse. Keep the box it comes in, and it can come with you to visit the grandparents for a week. The MacBook/Pro is obviously more portable, but yeah… Either one would be good, I’m sure.


You are right about the iMac being portable. You could pretty much move it around the house, wherever you wanted to plug it in, quite easily. You just couldn’t run down to Starbucks and surf the net while you sip your coffee, like you can with a MacBook.

My daughter has an iBook and I have an iMac. We both think we made the right choice. She likes to use her computer in bed. I like the big screen of the iMac and having a full sized keyboard and mouse. I always find laptops uncomfortable to use for very long. Although I know she was glad to be able to take hers over to her friend’s house on Sunday and do some video editing for a school project.

I also have this fear, with three boys, that if I had a MacBook it would end up getting tossed around the room like a frisbee.

I think they are running the free iPod and free printer special right now too, aren’t they?


On Mac’s website too they also offer refubrished computers that will come with a warranty as well…


One thing to keep in mind when buying a computer-laptops use less energy than desktops. Another thing to keep in mind-laptop users have more back-related problems than desktop users. Typing this on an 8 year old blueberry iMac (333 mhz G3) that I’ve owned since new (1999!), the iMac is a standout little computer. I bought it then b/c it was the most portable desktop and it still is.

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