Buyers’ Guide 2015: Mac for business

Looking to refresh your business’s computer deployment? These days, looking to Apple is probably your best option. As well as their power, flexibility and ease of use, they’re also incredibly durable and reliable, so you can count on a better TCO and ROI than with PC counterparts.

Your options are much simpler too – you have a choice of MacBook Air, MacBook Pro and, now, the new 12″ MacBook, as well as desktop computers in the form of Mac Pro, iMac and Mac mini, which can come with differing internal features depending on your needs. When shopping for PC ‘ultrabooks’ and desktops, on the other hand, there simply isn’t one single contender to match Mac, but a whole universe of laptops and desktops sporting differing processors and screen sizes (not to mention vastly varying build quality), which can get rather confusing.

To make things even easier, we’ve broken down the range below, giving recommendations based on the team’s actual experience using Mac within the business, as well as links to buy. If you are wanting to deploy a raft of new notebooks and desktops, you’ll probably want to talk to us first, as experts in all things Apple, including integration, rollout, management and post-sales support. But let’s take a look at the actual products available first…

MacBook Air

Ideal for: Mobile workers who need long battery life

MacBook Air on Jigsaw24

MacBook Air has been around since 2008, and in that time, Apple have really worked on making its internals match its external form factor. One of the thinnest (just 1.7cm at its thickest point) and lightest (as little as 1.08kg) notebooks around, it is undoubtably good looking, but that stunning design also means it’s incredibly portable. That makes it a great choice for anyone who needs to run applications on the move when a tablet just won’t cut it – so salespeople, client-facing consultants and other staff in the field, for example.

Equally, if we are called in to a meeting, we can just pick up our MacBook Air and head down, hooking up to the room’s display (either wirelessly over AirPlay and Apple TV, or through a wired Mini DisplayPort connection) to share with the group. The 11″ model in particular, can easily be stowed away in your bag and carried around all day without putting your shoulder out.

Another feature that’s bound to be a boon for business is the battery life. Apple say the 11″ model will go nine hours without a recharge, while the 13″ model, which includes larger batteries, tops out at 12 hours. Of course, your mileage may vary depending on what apps you’re running, display settings and other factors, but that’s more than enough to get you through a full business day before you have to plug in again. The fact that they rely solely on solid state flash storage also means MacBook Air is speedy too – 17x faster than a traditional 5400-rpm notebook hard drive, in fact.

The latest versions feature:

11″ MacBook Air

– 11.6″ high-res glossy display.

– Up to 512GB flash storage.

– Up to 8GB RAM.

– Fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

– Intel HD Graphics 6000 processor.

– From £549 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.

13″ MacBook Air

– 13.3″ high-res glossy display.

– Up to 512GB flash storage.

– Up to 8GB RAM.

– Fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

– Intel HD Graphics 6000 processor.

– From £702 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.


MacBook Pro

Ideal for: Those needing more power from a portable computer

MacBook Pro on Jigsaw24

Now we move on to Apple’s performance notebook, MacBook Pro. With the fastest components and plenty of CPU, RAM, and storage, not to mention a wide range of ports including Thunderbolt 2, MacBook Pro is a solid choice for creatives. So if you have an internal marketing team who need to create, edit and deliver video, design layouts and high-res imagery, while still remaining portable, you should be looking at going for the Pro.

Indeed, as well as our design team’s desktop Mac Pro and iMac workstations, they use MacBook Pro when out on shoots and case studies. It will happily handle rendering and exporting compositions in processor-intensive apps like Adobe Creative Cloud’s Photoshop and InDesign, while you get on with the rest of your workload. And that also means it’s comfortable handling multiple, massive Excel spreadsheets at the same time too!

While MacBook Pro still is technically very portable, it isn’t quite as easy to carry around as MacBook Air, weighing in at 1.58kg for the 13″ model, and quite a hefty 2.02kg for the 15″ version. But that is the price to pay for the higher-end spec and increased connectivity. Apple have now actually done away with the behemoth that was the 17″ MacBook Pro, but anyone who does need to see their work in finer detail than on the Retina display can still hook up to a second screen for more clarity.

13″ MacBook Pro

– 13.3″ high-res glossy display.

– Up to 512GB flash storage or 1TB hard drive.

– Up to 8GB RAM.

– Fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

– Intel HD Graphics 4000 processor.

– From £742 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.

13″ MacBook Pro with Retina display

– 13.3″ ultra-thin Retina display.

– Up to 1TB flash storage.

– Up to 16GB RAM.

– Fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

– Intel Iris Graphics 6100 processor.

– From £827 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.

15″ MacBook Pro with Retina display

– 15.4″ ultra-thin Retina display.

– Up to 1TB flash storage.

– Up to 16GB RAM.

– Fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

– Intel Iris Graphics 6100 processor.

– From £1299 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.



Ideal for: Mobile workers who need a Retina display

MacBook on Jigsaw24

New to the Mac notebook lineup for 2015 is the overhauled MacBook (you may recall this was the name given to Apple’s previous plastic unibody notebooks). It’s the thinnest and lightest of all the MacBook computers available – even more so than MacBook Air. It’s the first non-pro Mac notebook to feature a Retina display and also the first to come in a range of colours. While it’s not as powerful as the MacBook Pro and Air, it’s still speedy, complete with the new Intel Core M processor, up to 8GB of RAM and up to 512GB of flash storage.

Apple say it’s also their most energy efficient computer, using just five watts of power, and doing away with the fan for silent running. Most revolutionary though, is Apple’s inclusion of a new single, reversible, backwards-compatible USB-C port. This allows for super fast (5 Gbps) transfer while also carrying video streams and electrical charging over the same wiring as data. So essentially you have one connector for charging, transferring data to external devices, and carrying signal to external monitors, meaning you will need to employ adaptors if you want to hook up devices and connect to storage while you’re charging.

12″ MacBook

– 12″ Retina display.

– Up to 512GB flash storage.

– 8GB RAM.

– Core m processor.

– Intel HD Graphics 5300.

– Gold, silver or space grey colour schemes.

– From £866 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.


Mac Pro

Ideal for: Video and heavy creative work

Mac Pro on Jigsaw24

Moving on to desktop workstations, we have the Mac Pro – Apple’s workhorse. While you may not need 64GB RAM or 12 cores of processing power for everyday business tasks and systems, if you have an in-house creative team, they’ll thank you for investing in Mac Pro, the industry standard for design work, and video and audio editing.

This latest generation of Mac Pro, released in 2013, introduced a radical new design. Ditching the classic tower form factor in favour of a sleek cylindrical casing, Mac Pro manages to pack all its internals into a 25cm high, 5kg casing that will happily sit on a desk, and it comes with enough ports that you’re able to connect all the displays, storage and peripherals you require. And, if there’s a specific configuration you need, you can add your own RAM, processors and storage with our online Mac Pro Configurator.

Mac Pro

– Up to 2.7GHz 12-core processor.

– Up to 1TB PCIe-based flash storage.

– Up to 64GB (4x16GB) memory.

– Up to Dual AMD FirePro D700 with 6GB GDDR5 VRAM.

– Support for three 4K displays,

– Six Thunderbolt ports.

– From £1999 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.



Ideal for: Creative teams or those needing an all-in-one workstation

iMac on Jigsaw24

iMac has long been the choice of graphic designers and imaging specialists for its power and large display, but it’s perfect for the office too. An all-in-one workstation, all the internals and connectivity are neatly contained within its incredibly slim form factor, so there’s no desk clutter, and it comes with an Apple keyboard and Magic Mouse or Magic Trackpad too. In 2014, Apple also launched a 27″ iMac with Retina 5K display, which is great for seeing content with an increased level of colour and detail, as well as being ideal if you want more screen real estate so you have a larger workspace to fit your toolbars, and work on the content itself.

21″ iMac

– 21″ widescreen display.

– Up to 1TB flash storage.

– Up to 16GB (2x8GB) RAM.

– Up to Core i7 3.1GHz processor.

– From £690 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.

27″ iMac

– 27″ widescreen display.

– Up to 1TB flash storage.

– Up to 16GB (2x8GB) RAM.

– Up to Core i5 3.4GHz processor.

– From £1195 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.

27″ 5K iMac with Retina display

– 27″ 5K Retina display.

– Up to 1TB flash storage.

– Up to 16GB (2x8GB) RAM.

– Up to Quad Core i7 4.0GHz processor.

– From £1317 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.


Mac mini

Ideal for: General office work

Mac mini on Jigsaw24

The smallest of Apple’s desktop options, Mac mini is ideal for the desk, but that doesn’t mean it’s lightweight. With up to 16GB RAM and 3GHz processing power, it’ll breeze through spreadsheets, as well as more processor-intesive tasks, while using up a tiny amount of power. All you need is to hook it up to a display, and add a keyboard and mouse.

Mac mini

– Up to 1TB flash storage.

– Up to 16GB (2x8GB) RAM.

– Up to Dual Core i7 3GHz processor.

– From £329 ex VAT on Jigsaw24.


Want to know more about MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro? Give us a call on 03332 409 306, email or just pop your details in the form below and we’ll be in touch. For all the latest news and tips, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.


Or fill in the form below to find out about our b7 proof of concept trial for executives that lets you see the benefits of Mac – such as improved productivity and lower total cost of ownership – before you invest.

Call us: 03332 409 306

One thought on “Buyers’ Guide 2015: Mac for business

  1. Hi, I would like to buy an imac or mac mini for small/medium design for print jobs. I have been out of the market for some years and would appreciate some advice. I would like 27′ display but do not need retina. I would like 16 GBRam and had been advised to get a 2012 mac mini which doesn’t seem available anymore. Any suggestions, thanks

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