Originally Posted by MBstortsiii
I’m going to be a freshman in college next year and I’m majoring in Art with a concentration in Graphic Art/Design. The Art department at the University I am attending uses Mac desktops and recommends purchasing a Macbook Pro (I would get it loaded), but they also allow PC notebooks. I love to game, and if I’m going to invest large amounts of money into a notebook that is to last me at least four years, I want it to be able to play the latest games; after researching I decided if I were to get a PC, I would get a loaded Dell XPS 1710. The Dell is so much more appealing to me and is the computer I really “want”. The teachers (and what I've read around the web) say that Macs are an “industry standard” and are better then PC’s for Graphic Art/Design (with programs such as Adobe Photoshop). Is it really that much of a difference? Also, teachers have told me that if I were to get a Dell, I may have problems transferring files from the Mac to the Dell and I could experience issues with the programs. Is this true? Would these problems get in the way of my schoolwork or turnout to be too much of a hassle? The only thing stopping me from getting a Mac is their inferior gaming performance…what should I do?
i'd also ask u to consider the value of gaming on a notebook. if say for instance u absolutely need to have a notebook as your 1 and only system then packing the kitchen sink into that for your uses makes more sense. even so i'd ask u to think about how much u game and how competitive u r with it. personally, my eyes would and do go buggy w/ strain when i try and play on anything smaller than 19". so, gaming on a 17" notebook for me would be "fun" but nothing i'd give a thought to if i had a match to play online. imo, widescreens need to be 20" at least to start to be usable for gaming, preferably 21-24" to be comparable to the actual vertical room u get on a 4:3 screen. also, notebook keyboards are less than ideal for fragging worth your salt. in any case, long story short, if u want something for any degree of serious gaming i'd consider going the way of a macbook for school and possibly building your own desktop. there's more than a handful of "build your own budget gaming rig" articles done by the tech sites. so in sum, u could likely get a MB and put together a gaming desktop for less than the MBP or the Dell. also, a 15" or 17" screen is fine for a moderate degree of use. if however you are going to be looking at a screen for 6+ hours at a time (i did graphic design in school as well) then u need to ask yourself how functional a notebook really is for your work. at home, given the scenario i had suggested w/ getting 2 systems, u can simply plug the MB into your equipment and have access to the larger monitor. this also takes into consideration that at school it may be unlikely that u could really make use of your laptop for working on a project for any extended amount of time as they're not going to have extra screens just sitting around for your use. so as mentioned already, i'd ask specifically about what kind of equipment they have in their computer/design labs so u can get a comparison between what u are interested in getting for your laptop and what they have. i.e.-if they use 17" screens then there isn't a huge difference between your prospective systems. if they use 19"-20"+ screens then you're probably going to notice a big difference in eye strain on longer term projects. in which case, u could make do w/ a more mobile system as the bulk of your work will be done in the labs or at your place w/ the MB linked up w/ your desktop KB/Monitor/Mouse. just some thoughts...