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Thread: MAC vs PC

  1. #1
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    MAC vs PC

    Here's the ultimate thread. Lindsey is trading in her PC (HP should stand for Horrible Product) and she has an option of going to a MAC right now. I'm looking for people that know about Mac's since I've never used one, never upgraded one, and have ZERO experience with them.

    T-Mo, JFord, Donald, other graphics/photographers: I especially want your opinion as she is starting up her own photography stuff and would be most likely using this for picture editing and storing of pictures.

    So a few questions about the following:
    1. Software (antivirus/spyware protection, photo editing software, internet, money managing {Quicken}, instant messaging)
    2. Hardware replacement (If something goes out, can I go to newegg and just plug in the new part?)
    3. Upgradability (processor, RAM, hard drive)
    4. Will it be obsolete in 2 months like PC's??
    Finally, for what she's going to be using it for, would YOU buy a MAC or PC??

    Don't put your trust in anyone on this forum, including me. You are the key to your own success.

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    Doc,
    I currently own 6 Macs of various vintage (my wife publishes a shopper paper) and except for a couple of instances I would choose the Mac every time. Photoshop, InDesign, etc. were made for Mac and run like a champ. I use Quicken at home on a Mac and it works fine. Upgrades are very simple, I have been upgrading Macs for almost 20 yrs with no prior knowledge or experience, so I would say just about anyone could do so. I am not familiar with Newegg, I have always used CDW or one of its predesescers, no problems, overnight shipping, etc, But I have rarely had problems with any of the Apple hardware. A nightmare with the shortlived Apple clones several years ago, but very few problems with Apple hardware. There are a few programs that have quit supporting or upgrading for Macs (Quickbooks and Internet Explorer to name a couple) but there are always better alternatives anyway. Hope this helps.

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    I am thinking about upgrading to a Mac myself. I am most concerned about the ability to transfer files from a PC to a MAC and vice versa. Is microsoft office for Mac the same as regular microsoft office? Are spreadsheets, power point presentations, and word documents able to be transferred from a MAC to a PC and vice versa? Also, does Mac have a "right click" function?

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    Office works virtually the same, there may be some very minor differences. Mac will open and read PC created files seamlessly, depending on your version of Office for the PC, you may have to save in the proper format, but no problem. Yes, the Mac has the right click, scroll and pretty much all functions of the PC, but in a more intuitive operating system.

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    I just talked to one of our friends (Suz) and she was telling me about Apple's new bootcamp program that comes with apples.. giving you the ability to basically partition your hard drive, or cut into pieces how you want it to be cut. She said for example she cut hers in half.. and then was able to run both Windows and OSX. That seems pretty sweet.. does anyone on here have any other info or maybe experience with doing that? Does it bog down your computer to have 2 operating systems on it?

    It seems like the only major downfall to apple that i'm hearing is well price of course.. and then the transfer of things from PC's to apple and vise versa... The only thing i know going into it that will no longer be compatable with the apple is my copy of photoshop.. but other then that I dont have anything to transfer to the new computer.. My old computer was wiped.. and I'm not in school now.. so I dont have to worry about school stuff being compatable with other computers.. I guess you could say i'm at a point where I can make a fresh start.. i'm just starting out in the photography world.. and i'm trying to see if its worth it to put my money into an apple.. or use it else where and stick with PC. thats my main concern.. of course matt (doc) has all the techniqual things hes worried about being the computer nerd.. lol.. but I just want to know i'm making the right choice!

    thanks guys!!

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    I've used them both and my answer to which is better is...it depends. I do some photo and video editing at home on a dual core PC with Photoshop and Premiere and I can say that it is adequate if you don't mind waiting a bit longer for videos to render. As far as your standard productivity software (Office, e-mail, etc) I don't think you'd really notice the difference.

    I used a Mac G5 when I was in my Master's program to do video work and as far as the video editing side goes, all I can say is that there's no comparison. Granted these were the ultra souped up systems (U of M spares no expense on some things) but I could render a 5 min video in about 30 seconds to a minute when it takes 15-20 min on my PC.

    They will both do the same thing for you and I, personally, have been lucky and never had any major hardware issues with any PC I've owned. What it really comes down to is if you're willing to pay the price for the Mac vs the PC and what are you going to use it for. If you predominately use it for normal office stuff, I would stick with PC. If you're a heavy graphics/video person and want speed, go with the Mac.

    This all probably doesn't help much, but this has been my experience, anyway.

    Dawgyinmiami

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    The apple will read and open PC files with no problems, in reverse, you may have to change the file extension, or most programs will allow you to save as a PC file. As far as Photoshop and many other graphics programs, you can't tell any difference whether it was created or saved on a PC or Mac

  8. #8
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    The number one factor should be price. If you feel that you can spend $3000 on a good Mac Pro, you will have an absolutely great machine that you will never have a problem with. However, do look closely at waht PCs can offer you in the same price range. The most frequent mistake in comparing PCs and Macs is comparing different price points. I've had so many people tell me how much better their MacBook Pro is then their Gateway laptop that costs $450. I think you could buy a much better machine for photography applications than a iMac or Mac Mini at the same price if you go PC. If you are going to spend over 3 Gs, you need to go ahead and go MAc Pro with the 23" monitor and around 4 gB of RAM at around 4 Gs.

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    Re: MAC vs PC

    After posting this, I went over to the Apple store to see if I was even close to right. It is possible (and even reasonable) to drop 20 grand on Mac Pro. That is freaking insane.

  10. #10
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    Quote Originally Posted by DocMarvin362 View Post
    1. Software (antivirus/spyware protection, photo editing software, internet, money managing {Quicken}, instant messaging)
    2. Hardware replacement (If something goes out, can I go to newegg and just plug in the new part?)
    3. Upgradability (processor, RAM, hard drive)
    4. Will it be obsolete in 2 months like PC's??
    Finally, for what she's going to be using it for, would YOU buy a MAC or PC??
    And now to address your questions directly:

    1) For graphics applications, doesn't matter. Photoshop, Quark Xpress, etc... are all on both. You don't need antivirus protection as bad on a Mac, IM is cross platform, and there are great financial software options. So no advantage in this case. It would be if you wanted to play high end games.
    2) You can order replacement parts, but getting them repaired professionally is much harder than PCs in my experience at Ruston company that used Macs.
    3) Same as above.
    4) It will become obsolete at the same rate as PCs with similar specifications. Moore's Law will probably hold regardless of the operating system being run or the manufacturer who made it.

    My recommendation for what she should do is posted in my first reply. I will say that I own a Gateway $450 laptop that I carry around every day so that when I destroy it, I won't be the least bit upset. I use a high end PC at work (purchased for $3,000 last spring) and a middle of the road Mac Mini at home. I am happy with all of them.

  11. #11
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    Well heres the thing... I am looking for something to be my main computer... but i'm also into photography. so my thing is.. for different reasons I want/need the mobility of a laptop. But as being my primary.. really only computer i will specifically own.. I want something good dependable.. that meets my needs. the apple i am concidering is the macBook pro priced at $1999.99. My thing is.. I could see validating spending that kind of money on a laptop that is dependable.. reliable.. and will last me awhile (according to what i've read 6+ years) however I am not willing to spend the same amount of money on a PC that will be outdated much quicker.. and will last me around 3 years. If I go with pc i will most likely spend significantly less then I would on the apple.. because its just what i'm willing to do.

    I think i'm leaning significantly at this point in the direction of apple.. but your right.. its very pricey.. especially when you include the needed software.. such as photoshop.. and microsoft suite and quicken and possibly a virus protection.. all of those things could be pushed to the back burner yes.. but its still alot of money.

    still thinking!
    THANK you all so much though this is great!
    linds

  12. #12
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    If you're a right-brained type, a Mac will probably make your computing experience more enjoyable.

    In my opinion, if money is a consideration, I can't justify the extra dough for a Mac. They really put it to you with the cost of their hardware. You get more bang for your buck with a PC. Having said that, it all boils down to personal preference. Do your homework and read up on as many recent laptop reviews as possible.

    Regarding the cost of Macs: you can purchase "refurbished" Macs. I don't have any experience with them, so I can't comment on quality, dependability, etc of a used Mac.

    If you ever upgrade an Apple, avoid the Apple store like the plague. They are actually charging ten times the amount as Newegg for 2GB of RAM:

    Apple Store
    Newegg

  13. #13
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    Quote Originally Posted by linds_Marie View Post
    I am not willing to spend the same amount of money on a PC that will be outdated much quicker.. and will last me around 3 years.
    PCs and Macs become outdated at the exact same rate. I still have a great PC that I built in 1999 with the best parts out there and I can do everything my Mac Mini (that I bought recently) can do on the 8-9 year old PC.

  14. #14
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    Unless there is a major shift in software, PCs just aren't going obsolete like they did 10 years ago. I have a 9 year old PC that still works fine -- unless I'm doing major development. My three year old machine at work can handle anything I throw at it. Only very high end graphics make much of a difference, and if you get a top of the line machine, that won't get old very quickly.

    Unless we finally get a real 64 bit OS, the constant obsolesence is pretty much old news. There just isn't software to drive the problem we used to have.

  15. #15
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    Re: MAC vs PC

    I have a MacBook (non-Pro) that I've had for 3 years now, and haven't had to upgrade one thing on it. I work in one of the worst environments for computers, and it does just fine. I travel weekly, and let it sit in my truck for days in temps ranging from low 20s to 100+. It is my everyday computer at work and home, and I love it. Macs don't go obsolete as quick as Windows (a Mac is a PC too, I hate the Mac vs PC nomenclature). I worked on dozens of Macs and Windows boxes at Tech as a student, and with machines bought at the same time, the Macs lasted years longer.

    For video/photo editing, the software runs better on the Mac. It was designed for the Mac, and then ported to windows. And no, you can't compare a $450 gateway to a MacBook or MacBook Pro. Apple doesn't make cheap products. Apple doesn't want to sacrifice the quality of it's name for more sales.

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