DIY desktop PC or MBA?

Started Apr 17, 2012 | Discussions thread
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XFitter Junior Member • Posts: 36
DIY desktop PC or MBA?

Sorry for posting in both mac and pc forums, but it has to do with both. My Dell Studio 15 is on the fritz, so I can see an upgrade in the near future. My question is this: should I go with a Macbook Air that I can attach to a larger monitor (that I don't have), or custom build a PC. I have built my own computer before, so I'm not worried about that. I am by no means a professional photographer, but when I think of things that are important to me, it's my photos! Here are my initial thoughts:


heavy internet (blogging, reading, research...usually have 10 or so tabs open in chrome at a time)

moderate photo work (for casual photos use Picasa, for "nicer" work like vacations I use Lightroom)

light video work (if I have a faster computer, I would play around with making Dell sucks at even playback right now so I don't even bother)

Going with MBA: (would spend whatever is needed for 13", SSD, 8gb RAM, etc)
ultra portable
only one computer needed
more expensive than DIY
less powerful than DIY (but probably adequate)

need to back up to externals and photos won't always be available (not required, but nice to have)

Going with DIY: (would spend about $1000 on computer, extra for monitor...components would probably be i7 2600k, 16gb RAM, SSD for OS/programs and redundant hard drives to save pictures)
obviously customize everything I want
larger storage that can always be "on" and available
would probably want a laptop or ipad to bring on vacation/travel eventually
faster performance
ability to upgrade parts down the road
the satisfaction of building it myself

I don't have any particular loyalties of windows or mac...I grew up with PC and have a mac laptop for work (strictly work computer). I guess if I had to pick, I'd go with PC just for being more familiar with it and comfortable.

Any feedback or things I should be thinking about would be helpful. Should I wait to see the Macbook Pro upgrades that are coming soon? Thanks in advance!

 XFitter's gear list:XFitter's gear list
Sony RX100 Canon EOS 6D Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Canon EF 135mm F2L USM Canon EF 16-35mm F2.8L USM +3 more
Samsung i7
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