Desktops

Macworld on choosing the right Mac

You'd think that it would be easy to pick a Mac computer--after all, there are only six product lines (three desktop, three laptop) to consider. Unlike with PC manufacturers, you don't have dozens of different product lines and configurations to think about.

But once you do decide to buy a new Mac and you start perusing the Apple Store, you're presented with a series of choices. Should you choose with a Mac mini over an iMac or a Mac Pro? Or should you buy a notebook instead of a desktop Mac? And if so, why not opt for a MacBook Air instead of a MacBook or a MacBook Pro?

These questions and others like them are among the ones most frequently asked of the Macworld staff. And with good reason: Not only do we test and review every new Mac, but we also have strong opinions about which Mac is best for a certain type of user . If you're in the market for a new Mac, you can count on our advice.

In this article, six Macworld editors and contributors talk about why they chose the Mac they use every day. While each person has their own, unique set of daily tasks, those tasks may be similar to what you do every day. And other considerations--such as price, size, and specifications--also influenced each person's decision.

Need some guidance? We're ready to help. Read the articles below. We also have complete benchmark scores for each current (and some older) Macs, in case you're interested in gauging performance.

And be sure to add your thoughts in the comments section for each article.

[Photos by Peter Belanger.]

MacBook: The great compromise

Macworld's Blair Hanley Frank explains why the MacBook is the ideal computer: it's an affordable Mac laptop that does everything you need without sacrificing quality.

MacBook Pro: Portable powerhouse

Senior Editor Roman Loyola thinks the MacBook Pro is the ideal Mac for anyone who demands processing power while out and about.

MacBook Air: Thin traveler

Macworld Editorial Director Jason Snell is a strong proponent of the MacBook Air. He'll take a tiny, light laptop over a full-size, heavy one every time.

Mac mini: All you'll ever need

Senior Contributor Kirk McElhearn ditched his gigantic 2006 Mac Pro for a Mac mini. And he's smitten with Apple's smallest desktop computer.

iMac: Bang for the buck

Just a few years ago, an iMac was woefully inadequate for Senior Editor Dan Frakes. But boy, times have changed. Today's iMacs are, for most people, no longer compromises.

Mac Pro: Tower of power

Senior Contributor Rob Griffiths is a very demanding user. The Mac Pro is fast, has got room to grow, and can drive more than two displays. What's not to like?

Mac benchmarks: Speedmark 6.5

Macworld Lab uses Speedmark 6.5 to test and compare each new Mac's ability to perform using popular applications.

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