Time to buy a new machine for editing. Needing advice please.

Started Jun 16, 2013 | Discussions thread
MikeFromMesa Senior Member • Posts: 2,849
Re: Comparing the Retina and non-Retina MBPs

theswede wrote:

The Retina display is IPS and the non-retina is TN. If you're working with photographs you want IPS.

Early 2012 and older iMacs have TN screens (at least the size you're looking at) and late 2012 have IPS.

Unfortunately this did not do much to help me decide which machine to buy.

Macbook Pro Retina, late 2012 iMac or a separate IPS screen with a Mac Mini or hackintosh. Unless you want to spring for the Mac Pro.

This has turned out to be more complex than I thought it would be. Not the decision as to which machine to buy. I have decided on the iMac, probably the 21", 16 GB, Fusion, 2.9 or 3.1 Gz chip. But rather where to buy it and what do you get when you buy from online vendors.

Online store 1 sells several iMacs that fit this spec, but they are at widely different prices. Some are list price, some are bundled with 3 year AppleCare and Parallels at almost the same price. Very tempting, but why are their prices so low?

Online store 2 sells a single iMac fitting this spec at the same price as Apple, but offers free Parallels software.

Online store 3 sells a single iMac fitting this spec at about the same price as Apple, and offers no free software.

Online store 4 sells this iMac for about $600 more than the listed price but gives a phony list price.

You would think that this would make the choice easy, but it does not because I don't know what the differences between the machines are. Their manufacturer numbers are not the same and none of them show up on Apple's website as a valid number. I don't know if that means that Apple gives different numbers to different vendors or if all of the machines are not current or something else. One of the vendors told me that current machine mfr numbers start with Z0 and older machines with MD which might explain why the bundled machines are such great bargains, but even then I don't know what the differences might be so it is hard to make an informed decision.

I am tempted to just go to the local Apple Store to buy the machine but would prefer to not waste a couple of hundred dollars. This should be simple, but it isn't.

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