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Your experience using only a Macbook Pro for motion graphics

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I'm considering purchasing a Macbook Pro. I wanted to hear from people that use only a Macbook Pro for their freelance motion graphic and 3D work. Are you able to accomplish everything you need to do? Do you regret the purchase and would rather have an iMac or Mac Pro? Did you purchase an external monitor? Any pros and cons you can think of.

 

Thanks.

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I work on a dual-core macbook pro, using AE and C4D and photoshop and all of that, although primarily doing storyboards, so render times aren't terribly important to me. I'd say if you're doing modest 3D renders, you're ok, but if that's your main game, or all you're doing is 1080p effects-laden AE work, you'll want to look to desktops. This might be less of an issue with the new macbook pro quads, but I can't say. Screen space is initially the biggest question mark, but you get used to it surprisingly fast, given that you still have 1920 x 1200 to work with. Thought I'd get a second monitor, but found I just don't need it all that much.

 

Major upside is not being tied to a desk anymore. Not that you can really take it out in the sun and expect to see what you're doing, but you don't have to be at that goddamn desk to get anything done.

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I survived for two years on a regular Macbook. I think you can do it with a Pro. ;)

 

With that hardware, the only way you are limiting yourself is screen size, something thatt can easily be remedied with an external monitor at home.

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What Binky said. Except - I think you do need an external monitor but I do tend to have pretty complex timelines, multiple comp views and scriptUI panels open etc.

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Similar deal to Binky - I tend to use a similar Macbook Pro when on-site with certain clients, but render out the heavy AE & C4D stuff at home on a pretty decent PC.

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Cool. Good to know that the Macbook Pro can handle 3D and AE renders. That's my bread and butter, but I wouldn't say the stuff I do, or at least have done, is super complex. I like the mobility of the Macbook Pro, but I guess I'm concerned it won't have the horsepower for some future project. I would also be worried with an iMac due to the expandability problems in the future. I thought about a Mac Pro, but the money and the over kill are also a problem. I guess that's the trick though, finding the balance between too much and too little.

 

Has anyone here purchased the latest Macbook Pro? If so, can you compare it to the past generations in regards to speed?

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The new quad-core MBPs looks nice. But it only handles 8GB of RAM max, the 27 inch iMacs may be a better solution if you don't want a mobile computer that much.

 

I have never worked on a machine that has more than two cores, but i mostly have worked for graphic design firms that are not used to the horsepower of video related work and did very little 3d work commercially. Still, i've handled some pretty heavy AE comps, and some lengthy ones, when it was necessary i asked friends for their computers to render (if freelancing and felt the deadline was reasonable and i was the one late), when it wasn't possible, i had to deliver less than expected (by me, giving the client less than they expects is hardly an option for us) to cut render time or try to expand my deadline. That sucks.

 

I would say, if you can handle the price of a better computer, it may be worth, unless you NEED a laptop computer. It's pretty depressing see what an 8-core macpro render in 2 hours what took you 18 in your MPB.

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I just recently stopped splitting time between a PC with dual monitors and my 2010 MBP to go to only the MBP.

Runs like a champ, and haven't found anything I really hate doing on it.

 

I'm considering getting one of the 2010 iMacs now that they're way cheaper, and you can use them as a secondary monitor for about $500 more than a 27" ACD

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The new quad-core MBPs looks nice. But it only handles 8GB of RAM max, the 27 inch iMacs may be a better solution if you don't want a mobile computer that much.

 

I would say, if you can handle the price of a better computer, it may be worth, unless you NEED a laptop computer. It's pretty depressing see what an 8-core macpro render in 2 hours what took you 18 in your MPB.

 

 

The new MPB handles up to at least 16gb ram max.

http://eshop.macsale...C/1333DDR3S16P/

price of the single 8gb sticks dont justify it quite yet. But the availability is great to know that the 2011 MPB can handle the 16gb ram and hopefully more brands will roll out eventually. bringing down the price.

 

I bought one of the 2011 MBPs, 15inch quad core. 8gb ram.

Rendered an AE project of mine faster than it did on a 2010 8 core macpro.

I was surprised.

 

 

Im finding myself using my MBP more and more for the convenience and knowing its powerful enough to handle pretty much all the work I've thrown at it.

Edited by Encity

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Just to rant, I've been using my girlfriend's macbook pro the last two days from home while the internet situation is fixed at the office. I gotta say I absolutely hate it and feel 3 times slower. To be fair, its mostly due to being on the couch rather than sitting at a real desk.. and I'm using the trackpad.. but ugh.. I feel like its almost pointless to try. Made me realize how much I depend on the num pad. Where the hell did the alternate num pad go on these things? Haven't been on a MBP since college. Seems like a horrible thing to get rid of.

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I use a 13 inch macbook pro with a 23 inch screen at home. I find it's pretty good for simple AE stuff but it gets really hot and is really slow with c4d. I haven't tried the newer large ones but I presume the air flow is gonna be pretty much the same.

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Just to rant, I've been using my girlfriend's macbook pro the last two days from home while the internet situation is fixed at the office. I gotta say I absolutely hate it and feel 3 times slower. To be fair, its mostly due to being on the couch rather than sitting at a real desk.. and I'm using the trackpad.. but ugh.. I feel like its almost pointless to try. Made me realize how much I depend on the num pad. Where the hell did the alternate num pad go on these things? Haven't been on a MBP since college. Seems like a horrible thing to get rid of.

 

1. Use a mouse for the love of Jake.

 

2. I didn't realize how often I used the number pad until I didn't have one. I love that thing.

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...price of the single 8gb sticks dont justify it quite yet.

 

I didn't know they could handle 16GB of RAM, just checked the apple store quickly. But this price is an absolute deal-braker right now, it's almost the price of the computer.

 

Rendered an AE project of mine faster than it did on a 2010 8 core macpro.

Are you serious? Could post the time it took and specs/render settings on both computers? Seems interesting, and probably would help a lot the guy who opened the thread.

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Rendered an AE project of mine faster than it did on a 2010 8 core macpro.

Yeah that doesn't sound quite right unless the Mac Pro was totally starved of RAM or something else was wrong. I know the new MBP's are fast but the 2010 8 core MP's should still be faster.

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