Which MAC Laptop Is Best For Graphic Design 2022?
So you would want to use a Mac for your graphic design job. But which is best for you? We have gone over Apple’s line-up to determine the ideal machine for certain kinds of designers, but first we would like to discuss some basic guidelines to keep in mind while purchasing a new Mac. Here’s a rundown of the top Macs for creative and design work.
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We will go through why Macs are excellent for graphic design, look at the various components (RAM, graphics, and storage), and give recommendations on the best specs for a designer’s Mac.
We will also go through the advantages and disadvantages of the new M1 Macs, particularly the 24in iMac, which has the M1 processor. Is the M1 making the iMac less suitable for creative work? Continue reading to find out.
We will then gather up the many Macs Apple offers depending on their appropriateness for various kinds of design work – and add the greatest money-off bargains available right now so you do not have to pay full price!
You may also be interested in our recommendations for the best Mac for video editing and the best Mac for picture editing.
Why do designers like Macs?
Back in the day, Macs were at the vanguard of the desktop publishing revolution, outperforming PC competitors in terms of colour fidelity and typography. The differences between macOS and Windows are less apparent these days, and file compatibility is usually excellent when utilising suites that are accessible on both platforms, such as Adobe’s Creative Cloud. Nonetheless, the Mac continues to be popular among designers.
This is due to a number of reasons, including dependability, great specialised applications accessible exclusively for Mac (such as Sketch), tradition, and, simply, Macs looking a lot better than PCs.
What a designer needs from a Mac?
The more defined and concentrated creative jobs were, the farther back in time you went. However, a designer may now work in a variety of areas. That is not to suggest that individuals are not still working exclusively in InDesign to create magazine layouts, but the contemporary designer is just as likely to be dabbling in illustration, interface design, and 3D, all of which may be especially demanding and processor heavy jobs.
The very fast transition to digital complicates things even further. A decade ago, when it came to purchasing new equipment, a designer’s primary priority may have been flawless colour reproduction. However, today’s designers are more likely to work on screen-based design, with their work destined to be seen on screens of various kinds and sizes. With this in mind, a designer’s choice of display may be critical, since they may be attracted to 5K or even 6K screens.
Because the nature of their jobs may demand them to be more mobile, while before many designers opted for a Mac Pro or iMac, the MacBook Pro with a secondary monitor may now be appealing.
Two aspects that have not altered much over the years are the proclivity of design programmes to be RAM-hungry and the bulk of design projects to need a significant quantity of storage. In both instances, you must exercise caution since Apple now generally considers Macs to be sealed devices, which means that you cannot add additional RAM or storage afterwards, so you may need to configure at the time of purchase.
With that in mind, we will begin by going through our recommendations for CPU speed and cores, RAM, graphics, storage, display quality, and connectors.
MacBook Pro RAM
As previously said, design programmes are RAM-hungry, and since the RAM inside most Macs cannot be upgraded later, we recommend that you select the maximum RAM available when purchasing your Mac. Because Apple allows you to increase RAM in most models at the time of purchase, it is a good idea to get the most RAM you can afford.
Some Macs do allow you to upgrade the RAM later – the 27in iMac, for example, has a hatch at the back of the display that can be opened and additional RAM installed. RAM may also be upgraded in the Mac Pro and the 2018 Mac mini. If you want to save money, you may buy the RAM from a third party rather than Apple, but keep in mind that doing so would invalidate your warranty. For further information, see our guide on replacing RAM in your Mac.
As a graphic designer, you are likely to work with a large number of large files. You will most likely be searching for the Mac with the largest SSD available – and it is worth upgrading at the time of sale since, like RAM, you can not increase the SSD afterwards.
Some designers may be dissatisfied that Apple no longer offers Macs with Fusion Drives, which combined an SSD and a big hard drive. We believe Apple made a smart decision, although it does mean that you receive less storage for your money (entry-level iMacs used to ship with 1TB drives for example).
However, solid state storage has significant advantages: it is considerably quicker to retrieve data and is less likely to be destroyed.
If you need additional capacity, you may utilise external devices to house large files and archives.
With the introduction of the M1 Macs in November 2020, the decision of which CPU to purchase is more difficult than ever. The M1 chip (also known as a SoC, or system on chip) is Apple’s first silicon processor to replace Intel CPUs, which the firm had utilised since 2006/7. Apple has said that by the middle of 2022, it will have transitioned the whole line of Macs to its own ARM-based processors.
All M1 Macs come with 8-core CPUs. Other Macs typically have four, eight, or ten cores, but Apple still offers a dual-core 21.5in iMac (which we recommend you avoid) and the Mac Pro has up to 28 cores. The typical user may not need more than four cores, but designers should aim for six or more cores.