Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

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Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby JeremyZ on Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:45 pm

I'm thinking of buying a new computer. Was thinking of a mid-line PC laptop by HP. Around $600-700.

For a bit more, I could have a Mac Book. I like Apple's quality and design. Ever since the Apple ][ it has been above reproach.

I became an iPod owner a few years ago. I'm mightily impressed. I'd like an iPhone, but I balk at the $100+ monthly price. (buying once is one thing, financing it every month...)

Ever since high school in the early 90s, I've been using PCs. Never learned to use a Mac. But I hear they are pretty quick to learn, pretty secure, never crash or break, and have excellent support. That's where the extra $$ goes.

A couple of concerns though:

In my personal life, I use a computer 95% for internet. Shopping, buying, researching, fora, etc. I've heard that some pages & sites are inaccessible to Macs. Is this true? How about the page load speeds?

I do photography too. I hear Macs are far superior in that area. How so?

I do the occasional video editing. How are Macs for that?

My neighbor is a Mac guy, but he bought a PC laptop because he says sometimes, if one writes a resumé on a Mac, it is not viewable elsewhere. (don't they have the ability to save in .rtf format?)


Any other disadvantages to a mac online?

Any comments on transition from PC to Mac? (I've already heard too much for those who try to transition to PC)

Any other thoughts?
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby sooznd on Tue Jan 05, 2010 6:10 pm

Hey Jeremy
I do not know much about the current generation of Macs. When I worked for a publishing company we used Macs exclusively--So I worked on a Mac for 5 years.
It was not true that Macs did not crash--our hard drives froze up and computers crashed. Unlike with PC's--our IT support did not try to trouble shoot--they just replaced anything that broke. I would think much has changed since then.. But I remember being frustrated by the fact that you could no go "behind the system" to troubleshoot and fix things. I have a friend who uses a Mac, every couple of years she replaces her machine. I do not know if Macs are upgradable, or if she just likes to throw away money....

My first experience on the internet was through a Mac---I think if you use Firefox, browsing sites would be the same as with a PC. I do know there are some sites that you cannot use with Firefox even if you have a PC and you can only access with IE, but these are not many.

My Mac experience was during the mid to late 1990's. They were fun and easy to use. But then again,I have never had trouble with PC's either. I have only owned pc's and never had any of my systems crash or get viruses.

I think Macs are superior for graphic design, but business programs used to be way more expensive and not as plentiful with Mac.

I really like the design of Macs, they are beautiful to look at...
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby Paddy_Crow on Tue Jan 05, 2010 8:24 pm

I've had my iMac roughly 3 years, it has been extremely reliable. Not one issue. My only complaint is their customer service, they won't talk to you unless you're paid up on your maintenance agreement. I bought an Airport wireless router on eBay (at the time it was the only router that would allow me to route music to any computer on the network). Anyway, the procedure for hooking it up was ridiculous, no way I'd have figured it out on my own. I had to fork over the bucks before I could get any help.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby JSeaScoot on Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:38 am

Hey, awhile back there was a thread I chimed in on.

One recommendation - buy a refurb MacBook Pro. It's the same price as a MacBook, and a superior machine. They're in the online refurb store pretty often, though you might have to wait a day or two. I have one, and love it. No problems, same warranty as new, and you'd never know it was a refurb.

As far as websites: very, very few don't work with Safari (standard Mac Browser), but they usually will work with Firefox, and that's available on the Mac. I can't tell you the last time it's been an issue for me, however.

You can buy the iWork suite for $99. I personally really like it, and have created a couple cool newsletters using their built-in templates. It includes Pages (word processing), Number (Spreadsheet), Keynote (Powerpoint). I have not had any problems viewing MS documents, but I haven't tried viewing MS Office 2007 documents; maybe that was the neighbor's issue? Other options: MS does have an Office version for the Mac. Open-source NeoOffice is free, a little clunky, IMO, but very usable. Google Docs online doesn't require any software install and works fine for pretty basic stuff.

Macs do include the "iLife" suite:
- iPhoto, which is a photo organization tool. There are some basic tools included that you can use to edit photos. You can also try Google's free Picasa software. If you need professional grade, Apple's Aperture software or Photoshop is available.
- iDVD/iMovie/Garageband - movie and audio editing tools. Again, basic editing software, and I have not personally done very much with either. I have seen the results of someone who took more time with iMovie and iDVD, and it was impressive - this was also a couple versions back.

The other "investment" that I would make is time - Apple posts some very useful "how-to's", faqs etc., online, particularly in moving from a Windows world. One thing that I even have trouble with is that Apple users tend to not think in terms of "files". For instance, if you want to put a photo in a document, you don't have to go through the menus, look for a file, import, etc. You just have iPhoto open, and you just click and drag your photo into the document. Even "seasoned" users like me learn all sorts of new tricks.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby Smorris on Thu Jan 07, 2010 9:02 pm

I have Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, but hate the interface. I liked 2005 much better. We still use Office '97 on Windows at work, and file transfer back and forth flawlessly. I have the other free open source Office killer, too, OpenOffice.org. I like it better than NeoOffice (which I have on an older non-Intel Mac) OO.org and iWork can handle almost any MS Office files in both directions. If you have to have an Office document, though, MS Office Home Edition is only $107 at Amazon.

iPhoto and iMovie have fantastic capabilities. Between iPhoto and the shareware Graphic Converter, I rarely use Photoshop any more.

If you're a gamer, you won't like the Mac. There's just not the selection of games. If you use Quicken, the Mac version is OK, but not nearly as nice as the Windows version. I've spent the last couple evenings evaluating iBank as an alternate to Quicken.

Browser choices are Safari, Firefox, and Google Chrome for the big players. There's others, but I stick with Firefox because of the functionality and the add-ons. Adblock Plus is indispensable!

If you must use Windows, you can always install a version alongside Mac OS X. I have XP Pro that boots using Apple's free BootCamp. You have to restart to swap OSs, but that frees up all RAM. A paid option is available that runs Mac OS X and Windows side by side, but shares RAM. The only thing I use Windows for any more here at home is to run a high-end CAD program called Solid Edge. It runs just as fast on my $1900 24" iMac as it does on the $6000 Dell Precision Workstations at work. Here's a low res video of it running a 30+ MB casting model showing how smoothly it zooms, pans, and rotates. In some tests, Windows runs faster on an Intel Mac than on a native Windows machine.

While there are some pretty cool Windows only programs, there are also some amazing Mac only applications. Once Apple got their Java straightened out so that I didn't need to boot in Windows to use financial web pages, I haven't found anything that *I* do that I can't do on a Mac as well or better than on a Windows box.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby longhairedrockstar on Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:04 pm

hands down: switch and win.

no problems with my mac version of Word.

i can do everything a PC does except waste my life with antivirus, antispyware, and the crashing all the damn time.

AND: Applecare will save you thousands.

can you get a computer cheaper in the PC world? yes.
will it cause you to curse the heavens above on a regular basis? yes.

mac just works.


cheers!


as far as photo and video.
it depends on what you want to do.
macs come with iPhoto and iMovie.
if you want to do anything more sophisticated, you'll need Photoshop and Final Cut...but that's only if you need broadcast/publishing quality results.
tv is my biz, so message me if you need any crazy advice there.
if you just want to make DVDs of family trips and stuff, the standard included software will do a dang SLICK job of it without much hassle.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby Paddy_Crow on Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:23 pm

One thing- my Mac can not play windows media video files. Embedded files are no issue, but if someone sends me a WMV, I have to play it on my laptop. I have not found a free player for it.

Not much of an issue for me, I rarely get one sent to me that I want to watch.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby longhairedrockstar on Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:31 pm

flip4mac

http://www.telestream.net/flip4mac-wmv/overview.htm



install this on your OSX machine my man.
a must have.

once installed you don't have to do anything to activate it.
it will play the WMVs for you.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby Smorris on Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:59 pm

longhairedrockstar wrote:flip4mac


+1 Do it! :)
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby Paddy_Crow on Fri Jan 15, 2010 7:32 am

Thanks! I'll get right on that...
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby drewdle on Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:21 am

All I can say: Do it!

I've been switched to Mac for almost four years now. I got in just as they made the switch to Intel processors. I've found them to be well built, robust, dependable machines, even in harsh user circumstances. I've owned five of them; two Mac Minis, two MacBooks, and a third MacBook (the new unibody white one), only because I couldn't decide what I wanted, or wanted something better when they made an announcement. I didn't buy most of them new, and I've only had one issue with the lot (the new unibody one, the trackpad stopped working, which was odd as it's two months young). That's a fair track record compared to most PCs I've owned.

Some software reccomendations: Use Firefox for your main browser. This way, all websites will be compatible. Safari, Apple's browser, is faster, but it isn't recognized by all websites as compatible. For photography, get your hands on Aperture, which is Apple's version of Adobe Lightroom. It's half the cost, does all the same things, and arguably has a better interface and is tons faster. For office, you'll only get 100% compatibility with Office on PCs with Office for Mac. If you can live with 95%, download OpenOffice, which is just as good and free. Flip4Mac will solve QuickTime's WMV and WMA woes as mentioned above, and Perian will do the same with AVI and DIVX files, allowing you to watch pretty much anything natively in QuickTime (and subsequently in your web browsers).

Apple refurbs are a 50/50 thing. Sometimes they're great, sometimes their life-spans are sub-par, but they can be a great deal for getting into a Mac. If you need a desktop on the cheap, a Mac Mini is an amazing option. For $600 you get all the feel-good action of the white MacBook, but in desktop form.

Anyways, yeah. :D Good luck with your purchase!
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby benjo on Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:27 pm

If you can afford it, try it out! I use them all... Windows XP on a desktop, Max OSX on a laptop, and Debian GNU/Linux on another desktop and laptop. :-B

The only reasons I am using XP on one of my computers is to watch Netflix Instant movie streaming and an easy way to do a dual-monitor setup. :p

I can only have one computer, I would get a higher-end (but refurbished) MacBook.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby DaBinChe on Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:02 pm

yes go mac. I've switched over 3.5 years ago and haven't looked back.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby metronid on Mon Feb 08, 2010 7:51 pm

The only Mac I have is a Big Mac,
That is now gone with the fries.
Macs are high quality and great for what most people do on computers.
The internet .

Yes they can do a lot more.
My only concern is the amount of available software.
The OS is more stable than Windows and there is less viral software written to attack presently.

In any case it is quality and the OS and hardware are from the mind set Apple.
No offshoots to screwup the works.
Enjoy.
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Re: Thinking of going to Mac for next computer

Postby christophery on Fri Jun 12, 2015 2:00 am

Macgo Mac Player has Windows Version and Mac Version for playing high definition Blu-ray Discs. http://www.macblurayplayer.com
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