So, I haven't been playing Priest very long. Hit 80 shortly after Blizzcon '09, didn't start gearing up PvE gear until around October-November. I started out Disc, since I was coming from Disc PvP so I knew the spec enough to jump into heroic healing, after 2-3 pieces of t9 from badges, I switched to Holy and have been strictly Holy for PvE ever since. I enjoy the play-style and the variation of style available in the spec.
Until recently, being the only cloth healer in our normal ToC25 & ICC25 runs (granted not overly far through ICC25), I've gotten geared up faster than other healers in the guild, however, lately, the Shaman and Druids that we normally run with are starting to catch up to me in gear. I used to have no problems topping charts and in general carrying my weight. However, recently I feel I'm just starting to fall behind. The past 2 weeks, I've been last or second to last on Festergut, where I used to be first or second every week for the previous month. It's happening on other fights too, overall I sit around the middle simply because I can mold to the different fight styles, and I'm strictly a healer whereas some healers do the cannons on the gunship, since it can be 2-3 healed easily even on 25 man, not needing 6 healers for Saurfang, etc.
It's not by much, and I'm not being explicitly asked to switch, but I'm beginning to wonder if I wouldn't do more service to our runs if I switched to Disc. We have an occasional Disc/Holy Priest that runs with us on occasion, but lately he hasn't been around. From my understanding of Holy & Disc, gemming for one hinders the effectiveness of the other if going Disc/Holy dual-spec using 1 set of gear. I think gear-wise my gear itself is ok for Disc, but I'm not very well versed on Disc gemming/gearing. Going by wow-heroes and looking at the "top" geared Disc Priests on my server, as I said my gear itself seems to be good, not perfect, but good enough. Gemming seems like it'll need to change to be playing Disc properly.
We normally run with 1-2 Resto Druids, 1-2 Resto Shaman, me and occasionally another Priest, at least 1 Holy paladin (occasionally a second), some mix to get to 5-6 healers depending what we're doing that night.
So I guess there's a few questions. Would I be able to switch to Disc with the gear I have and if so, what gem's would I have to change, I'm assuming I can keep most of the pure SP gems and just swap out the SP+Haste & SP+Crit gems, but even those are 8 gems. Is there a middle ground gemming-wise where I can have my gear be effective for both Disc and Holy? (I recently obtained Death Surgeon's Sleeves, no gems yet)
Also, I understand the whole PW:S is powerful thing and the other tools are all really useful and nice, but would a raid-healing(/damage-prevention) oriented Disc spec be more beneficial?
Any constructive criticism is welcome, and please none of the "play what you like best", I know the mantra, I'm fine with either one, I'm looking for what will benefit the guild and general information of the potential using 1 set of gear for both specs.
Link to my Priest in sig.