What computer / laptop do you use ?

Discussion in 'Graphic Designers' started by jorizh09, Jun 6, 2014.

  1. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    Hi Philmuggers and fellow designers, newbie here. I'm just wondering what machine do you use for your design projects and what do you suggest?

    I'm currently planning to upgrade my laptop into something more powerful and futureproof. ;) I'm currently using an Asus K43sj from way back 2011: Corei3 2.1Ghz, 8GB ram, 1GB VRAM. It's not that bad but I have been struggling with overheating issues for the past months now even under 20C temp room.


    Thanks,
    Jon
     
  2. raypin

    raypin PhilMUG Addict Member

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    Mmm......a built-to-order MacBook Air (portability, long battery life) or a MacBook Pro (more processing or computing power) plus Wacom digitizer. Those are the best options, not just for design work but other professional applications.
     
  3. rowinms

    rowinms Member

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    Was hsing a macbook 13" retina, but have to change to mba 13" this week. The retina is just slow and heavy
     
  4. porkypork

    porkypork Active Member

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    I expect the rMBP to be heavier than the MBA but I don't think it's as slow or even slower?
     
  5. warmgreentea

    warmgreentea PhilMUG Addict Member

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    I think the retina MBPs should be of equal, if not, faster than their MBA counterparts. But for me, I'd go with a Macbook Air. Simple reasons: weight, battery life, and the resolution of MBA is adept to graphic designers. Having a rMBP for my graphic work, my softwares (like A-CS6) and a lot of websites looks very low-res jagged; it is hard to work with that resolution (I always have to adjust the display). If I didn't buy a rMBP, I'd probably get an Air.

    A friend of mine owns an 11inch MBA and he designs really well with it, and once he gets home he just hooks it up on his 27inch cinema display and continues his work there. He's very happy with it and his works are to be awed of, he got the 8gig ram 256gig ssd variant. :)
     
  6. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    I was actually eyeing on the MPBr, because the screen is just beautiful and I thought it would be the perfect screen for graphic design works. But now, after hearing issues about the workaround I think I'll go for a custom build Macbook Air. Do you know where I can get it faster? I already asked BTB and they told me that it would take a 4-6 weeks before it arrives ? I'm itching for a new machine already :D

    Anyways, thanks for the suggestions guys.
    I'm also wondering how your workflow changed when working in a retina display compared to non retina ?
     
  7. porkypork

    porkypork Active Member

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    issues about the workaround? you mean the screen ghosting?
     
  8. miggyhipolito

    miggyhipolito Active Member

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    What model is the retina and the air? How can the retina be slower than the air? :eek:
     
  9. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    Yes, I already heard some people experiencing screen problems as such and the workaround of changing DPI or resolution to get the actual pixel size. I'm designing for web and mobile devices so this might be a problem or inconvenience..
     
  10. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    Have you tried connecting your retina MPB to an external screen too and working from there like your friend ? I think that might solve my resolution concerns, what do you think ? I always design from 72DPI at 100% but the retina MBP has higher DPI so it would look smaller in retina at 100%. I'm thinking maybe you can still get 72 dpi at 100% when connecting it to other screen, does that make sense ? :D
     
  11. kenshinx

    kenshinx Active Member

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    for personal use: MBP 13" (mid 2011)
    office computer: iMac 27" (2013)
     
  12. warmgreentea

    warmgreentea PhilMUG Addict Member

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    Yes, of course it makes sense. :)

    The thing is I'm usually on my iMac to do all the work, then on my rMBP for polishing and revisions purposes on the spot. I haven't used the external monitor method, but I think that will surely work (assuming that you'll be working with a 1440p or 1080p monitor, not a 4k one). Since you're more into web and UI, I truly suggest going the MBA route, as working on a rMBP feels like working with a 72dpi (and less) even though I'm using the likes of 300dpi for print. It is actually very tricky, but time will solve these retina woes.

    You'll hate retina when doing web and even viewing web, as many websites aren't just that optimized yet. My fellow designers who specializes in the web industry are mostly into MBAs, the 11inch example I gave you is actually a web designer as well. You will get your 72dpi at 100% with the MBA, no problem.

    It is true that the retina is a big step gorgeous of an eye candy than the MBA's screen, but we're talking about practicality and means of earning for a living here. Function over form I guess, and besides, i still think that the MBAs has better screens than the Dells, HPs, Toshibas, etc out there; the color gamut and contrast of those machines are terribly wrong. :p
     
  13. rowinms

    rowinms Member

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    rMBP' retina has some effect. If you maxed the resolution the softwares take time to load. Then again if not use retina, then just buy a regular mb.

    Now i tried with mba 13", great stuff, even with parallels ON, speed is extremely fast.
     
  14. warmgreentea

    warmgreentea PhilMUG Addict Member

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    Wait! Wait! The solution to a better resolution for the likes of Photoshop is getting the Creative Cloud (latest) version! So basically, all apps will get updated soon. I got to tinker with a fellow designer's 15' rMBP and the resolution problem was fixed with his PS. So now it's up to you if you'd want the MBA or rMBP. But like what rowinms said, the retina does take effect with the processor/graphics card load since it needs to have an output of 2x the resolution rather than the native 1440x900. :)

    You can probably get the Adobe CC suite if you'd go:
    [​IMG]
    But still, going retina makes usual/native websites still look bad. Even pinterest looks bad, haha. :)
     
  15. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    Dude, Thanks for the info. I've tried designing in retina yesterday and borrowed my friends rMBP base model. It isn't too bad. Photoshop looks small though and the workflow I imagine I'll be doing there would be designing for 144 dpi then resizing it in 50% when saved to image to get 72 dpi, although there might be some issues i just don't know as of now, its a quick fix aside from working with an external monitor though I haven't tried it too.. I'm assuming the future updates from Adobe would fix retina issues on Photoshop. Illustrator on the other hand works well at managing pixels.

    I agree that some websites isn't retina ready yet, but the texts are sharp and nice on the eyes to read.

    Im thinking about purchasing the MBA but I imagine that it may be outdated after a month or year, thinking that retina displays will soon be the standard for laptops and the web. And I think that it's really near. I don't know, I may be wrong. lol :D

    One more question: Since the BTO Units will arrive after a month after placing an order. I'm thinking that I'll get the base model 13" MBA, will that be enough for intensive graphic design works?
     
  16. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    Thanks for the info. :) Does all the rMBP suffers from these ? or just the base model? I'm thinking of getting the rMBP middle specced with i5, 8GB 256GB ssd model (ME865ZP) or the MBA 13" Base model.

    Based from the youtube vids I watched, the performance has been quite similar MBA vs rMBP base model but still the Pro has the edge in doing some intensive tasks.. But what about the mid specced ones?, maybe it can do more judging from the specs. Nevertheless, I think they are both powerful machines..
     
  17. warmgreentea

    warmgreentea PhilMUG Addict Member

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    A base model MBA is more than enough if you're just going to use it for photoshop and illustrator, especially that you're into web as well. You won't be doing designs with the size of a football field right? Just get the 2013+ just to be sure. The only problem with these is that they're not user upgradeable, best to get a model with 8gig ram + 258gig hd (or 128 and an external HD) to further futureproof your machine.

    Everything will get outdated from the time it was released, so go with what you're most comfy with. And I don't think retina will be a standard until the next 3-5 years, just look at this chart:

    [​IMG]
    No retina Macs there (or even windows resolution), and 4k resos. For me, retina optimization is still on it's baby age. :)
     
  18. jorizh09

    jorizh09 Member

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    Haha. Thanks for the info dude. I think I'll just get myself the rMBP and the d*mn Creative Cloud. As you said Photoshop has been updated and if not, they should !. The deal breaker for me was the screen and the semi performance bump. If all else fails, I'll just use an external monitor or a cinema display. Anyways, Where did you get the chart ? It's from last year?
     
  19. warmgreentea

    warmgreentea PhilMUG Addict Member

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    You won't go wrong in either machines, you'll be very happy with them either way. :)

    Ahh you should have that app (being a web/UI designer), it's a plug in using Chrome called "Screen Resolution Tester", and I have another one called "Mobile/RWD Tester". It updates from time to time, I think every 4 months or so. Sometimes I do web or mobile apps as well, these are a few of my tools for design.. Download it as these are really useful stuff. :)
     
  20. rowinms

    rowinms Member

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    I was using a maxed mbpr before and i can feel the lag. But that was a feb 2013 model the oct 2013 can be very different.

    Just that now i use mba maxed out for acrobat, ps, ai, mails, word/excel/ppt and everything is good.

    Also noticed that 2013 vmware for mac is quite heavy so becareful, now i use parallels and my mba has not a single lag with coherence mode.


    But i also like to credit thinkpad x240 and T440 as my desktop notebooks. I bring thin in a construction site all the time.
     

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