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mileafly

Mac to buy for app development?

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mileafly    346

I have used Mac in Cloud for building my games in Xcode so far, but I have some extra cash to spare right now so I think I would make it a bit easier on myself and get a proper Mac for development. What would be your guys recommendation? I want to go as cheap as possible, but at the same time be somewhat "futureproof" and not sit on a piece of junk in a year or so when Apple makes a new OS and disgards the one I have bought, (dont know how often that happens?)

 

Just for clearification, I will stil be using my PC for development, the Mac is only used at the very last step to actually build the final build in Xcode.

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Syntac_    1355

I'd probably recommend the most basic retina MBP, it's reasonably powerful but it won't burn a hole in your pocket.

On a side note the refurbished Apple store is excellent. I recently picked up this MBP, which as far as I'm aware is more or less equal to current model, but cheaper.

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Bregma    9214


I will stil be using my PC for development, the Mac is only used at the very last step to actually build the final build in Xcode.

I'm just going to take a few hits of heroin to see what it's like.  I'll be able to quit any time.

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jpetrie    13162

Buying a Mac just to rarely use it seems like maybe not the best idea, necessarily. How long does it take for the Mac to pay for itself versus the hosted service you're using now?

 

 

 

I wouldn't get a Mac mini, which maybe runs counter to the typical recommendations for this kind of scenario, but the mini's are nearly a year into their current release cycle right now (which makes them "old" and likely to be updated sooner rather than later). They are also, even if they get updated tomorrow -- historically not a very good deal (particularly if you are worried about the 'longevity' of your purchase).

 

A MacBook Pro is probably a reasonable recommendation; you don't need a high-end one with a dedicated GPU, the low-to-mid range models will suffice. It will save you from needing to deal with extra hardware (keyboard, monitor, et cetera), they are usable for a very long time (Apple does not phase out old Mac hardware nearly as quickly as they phase out support for iOS hardware), and even if you get the 15" instead of the 13" model they are nice and compact and can be stuffed away somewhere when you aren't using them.

Edited by Josh Petrie

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A Mac mini will do just fine.  As long as it is Intel based it will be good to use for years.  At work we use a mid 2012 mini as the build machine for our Adobe AIR apps.  Even on the iOS side it is really years before an older phone is completely obsolete.  It is really the fact that just more and more frameworks are moving to iOS 7 as the base that iPhone 4 and older devices are falling off the map.

 

But depending on how far from the low level your chosen tool chain is saving the Mac for last might bring you a world of hurt.  Android and iOS are too completely different beasts and only designing for one in mind usually doesn't work out well for the other.  Use source control and a KVM switch and actively do builds on both.

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Promit    13246

The Macbook Pro Retina is easily a solid choice if you're also going to use it as a day-to-day laptop. I ran out of memory trying to do development on the older 8 GB model MBP, but I don't know how big or heavy your stuff is. (I didn't feel like ours was big, but...)

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