View Full Version : What is a good computer setup for a designer?

7th July 2009, 09:05 PM
I just wanted to check what people think are good computer set ups for a designer ?

a designer : interior design, graphic designer, architect ?

Macbook pro + 24" screen?
mac pro ?

Take value for money into consideration!
Can some practicing or any senior designers or people who no from experience, give me there opinions into what is good / sufficient / overkill / average.

7th July 2009, 10:37 PM
Mac Mini (http://store.apple.com/au/configure/MB464X/A?mco=NDE4NDM2OQ) + any nice, big external hard drive (http://staticice.com.au/cgi-bin/search.cgi?q=external+USB+1TB&spos=3) for storing / backing-up projects.

Dell 2408WPF (http://www1.ap.dell.com/au/en/home/monitors/monitor_2408wfp/pd.aspx?refid=monitor_2408wfp&s=dhs&cs=audhs1) or 2209WA (http://www1.ap.dell.com/au/en/home/monitors/monitor-dell-2209wa/pd.aspx?refid=monitor-dell-2209wa&s=dhs&cs=audhs1) Ultrasharp Monitor (plus a stupid converter for mini-DP to HDMI or whatever)

That is seriously enough for most 2D graphics tasks - and is by far the best value set-up I can think of.

Anything more and you'd want to look at getting a second-hand Mac Pro for the extra processing grunt if you are doing a lot of 3D model rendering. I'd still recommend a Dell display on top of that as well, you just can't beat their performance for the money.


7th July 2009, 10:40 PM
Dux has the right idea.

You could also sub in a Macbook Pro instead of the mini, depending how often you'd need to take your work with you.

I often use my Macbook Pro for presentations and for demo work for clients.

Either way it's tough to go wrong.

7th July 2009, 10:42 PM
24" iMac is a pretty good setup, IPS screen etc

7th July 2009, 10:42 PM
Yeah - if you are really mobile I'd recommend the 13" MBP. The display is finally at a quality I'd be happy to recommend for a graphics professional (although you'd still want to be doing your proofing on a real 8-bit IPS or VA screen, ie the Dells listed above).

24" iMac is a pretty good setup, IPS screen etc

Really? I was under the impression it was just a really bright TN display. I know a fair amount of pros who discourage the iMac since its screen can get less accurate and 'yellow' over time, just like most TN LCDs.

8th July 2009, 11:57 AM
I use a Mac Pro at work, but have a 24 inch iMac at home with 4 GB of RAM that I use for freelance. The iMac gets a fair bit of use, running all the Adobe apps, and I have no complaints. It handles everything really well. I was a bit hesitant about the glossy screen when I bought it, but it has not been an issue.

St Cornelius
8th July 2009, 05:58 PM
admril is there a massive jump from a imac to macpro ?? generally speaking ofcourse i understand they are completely different machines

10th July 2009, 12:55 AM
I highly highly recommend the 15" 2.66ghz Macbook Pro + an Apple Cinema Display. I love the new cinema displays. Their colours are amazing, and the built in iSight + Magsafe come in handy! The 2.66Ghz Macbook Pro comes in really handy if you ever want to show off you work at a customers office/other location. I have a 2.4Ghz Unibody Macbook Pro that I've been using since Oct. 2008 that I absolutely love. For me the 256MB Vram is enough and it runs a lot of intensive apps well: IE: Photoshop CS4. The only reason I'd swap this Macbook Pro is for a newer version (I want a 2.8Ghz processor - I'm greedy :P)!
My particular version is on the Apple refurbished store right as I type this. It is going for $2149! The new 13" Macbook Pro is going for $1899, for an extra 200 you get an extra graphics cared with integrated graphics + a larger display. An AMAZING price! The Cinema display is going for $1150, so I'd click away and buy buy buy. Apple refurbs are pretty much brand new, though they may use some parts from another faulty device. Their cases are new so there won't be any scratches, etc etc. Please don't forget to use the Mactalk link (Mactalk gets a cute of the money, to upgrade servers etc etc).
Good luck with your Mac choice. They are all fantastic, but I believe it's best to spend that extra money to get a better machine that will keep you running for longer :)

11th July 2009, 08:29 AM
Would say A 17" 2.66ghz Macbook Pro with a 24" screen. That will be a perfect set up for you. I use this setup for lots of work.