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    questions questions

    Im off to uni in sept so looking to build a PC (as my laptop just killed itself) my dilemma goes beyond component choice in that I will be studying graphic design and its from my understanding that mac's are the industry standard so intend to purchase a macbook pro about feb 2012.

    I have been pricing up different builds; on one hand I have a i5 2400 with a Nvidia 560 or AMD 6870, 4gb RAM, H67 mobo etc etc which puts the total build just over £500. This build focuses on value for money giving me entry / mid level components with little room for overclocking (isnt important)

    On the otherhand I specced a PC that included a i5 2500(k) 6950 2gb, 4-8gb RAM, P67 mobo allowing for overclocking (future-proofing) and total spend would be around £750 mark

    I will use the computer for the majority of adobe products related to my course; photoshop, illustrator etc. But also like to take advantage of some of the steam sales that I am always seeing, used to be big into the likes of counter-strike 1.6 and moved over to dare I say it? World of Warcraft which I would like to dust off and give another go. I do have a xbox360 which i see the most time being spent playing games.

    I am concerned that my macbook will replace the desktop with time and upon reflection at a later date i wish I hadnt of spent the extra money future proofing the desktop. I look at the components and its like an extra £15 to get the 2500k over the 2400 and it seems silly not too, but then all components follow suit and the price soon goes up.

    I love writing long winded threads :/ cheeeeers. x

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    Re: questions questions

    A lot of Adobe products will run under Windows anyway, but you might want to find out what you will be using at University as it makes sense to use the same type of machine - so if they are using Apple, get an Apple PC.

    You might also want to find out if they can source machines at a discount, or if Apple offer a student discount as that will save some money.

    Running games is likely to be harder on a Mac, but you could run a virtual achine on the Macbook, and run Windows in that - you will need a legit copy of Windows to do it - but you can get a student edition which will keep the cost down.

    Running a virtual machine will take a bit of a performance hit (although I have heard anecdotal evidence that Windows in a virtual machine on a Mac runs faster than Windows natively on a machine of the same spec) so if you are planning to go down that route, get as high a spec machine as you can - the more grunt the processor has, and the more Ram, the better (be good for running machine intensive applications under Mac OS anyway.)

    There are other alternatives, but as they involve hacking the Mac OS and breaking the terms of the End User Licence Agrrement, they can't be discussed on HEXUS.

    So - check with Uni what machines they recommend/use.

    If it is Apple - find out about discounts

    Get the best spec machine you can afford in terms of CPU and RAM - and check the virtualisation capabilities.

    Enjoy.

    If the Windows route is OK, again go for the best spec you can afford - some of the CAD/CAM packages require a fair amount of power to ger satisfactory performance (as they do on the Apple platform)

    Hope that helps.
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    Re: questions questions

    I was looking beyond Uni, in terms of going into the industry it is commonplace to find design studios full of macs so it is important that I get to grips with the Mac whether I like it or not.

    From what I remember on the open day the design suites are full of macs, I will be able to get student discount through the apple store so I intend to get one at some point or another.

    At this present time however I am without a PC so need to build something to take with me in september, blowing over a grand on a macbook pro isn't what I had in mind as from what I gather the first year will be more about taking us away from the computers and focusing on core skills such as idea generation, typography etc etc.

    It is interesting what you mentioned about putting two OS on the macbook as a friend mentioned that, in all fairness I think that would eventually be what I would do possibly leading to the desktop gathering dust, I suppose I can only decide for myself if the extra bit of money for the 2500k is worth it over 2400 CPU, what about if I ask this question?

    i5 2400, H67, 4gb RAM, 6870 - Lifespan = % years?

    i5 2500k, P67, 8gb RAM, 6950 - Lifespan = % years?

    Like I mentioned the difference between the builds is around £250 depending on GPU choices, im all about value for money and hate that feeling of buying something and seeing it half price the week after I bought it or something twice as good is the same price, so try to avoid wherever possible.

    Thanks in advance. x

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    Re: questions questions

    I forgot to add, I havent encountered a problem in terms of using a PC instead of a mac, my last year at college I used my sony vaio exclusively and just moved files across onto the mac's to print on the college network. The software is cross compatible when saved under the correct filetype.

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