Thursday, June 17, 2010

Getting My Mac On.

I am seriously considering biting the bullet and shelling out the cash for a Mac.

Between all the photos I take and writing/blogging I do, it seems like a more than worthwhile investment, right?

I have a Dell that sits in my office collecting dust since it's SO slow, has a battery that won't hold a charge unless plugged in, and just generally does not serve my purposes. It just feels ever so slightly gluttonous to purchase a $2000 computer in this economy.

Anyone out there with tips on buying a Mac? Any programs I absolutely need/can live without? Any great add-ons?

I've honestly never heard a single negative comment about Macs, but in case I've missed something, anyone with any words of warning or negative feedback?


  1. First off....I LOVE the new blog layout (really pretty) and it no longer says that you're last post was 6 months ago! Hooray!!! Secondly, I LOVE macs!! I will never (well, probably never) go back. I've had a mac since college, thanks to my dad who has always given me his hand-me-downs when he upgrades. This past Christmas I got my very own and brand spanking new mac book! Seriously the best thing ever, especially since having Jack. I can't say one bad thing about it and it's definitely worth the money. It is expensive though, and had I not gotten it as a gift, it'd be a few years before I forked over the money to buy it myself. It's great though and if you have any questions, let me know. My dad is a computer geek so if I don't know the answer I will ask him. :)

  2. Coming from a technology-oriented standpoint, the new Macs are fairly bomb-proof. I spare you the details on the underpinnings, but they are pretty hard to "break."

    That being said, they're expensive, you can only buy replacement parts from Apple (which is also expensive) and they run HOT. This is not an exaggeration, my work laptop wasn't that old and used to run 141 degrees can imagine how that felt on an aluminum case! Even the new ones run hot enough to burn you. I'd be wary of having a laptop that runs that hot around grabby baby.

    I had a Mac book for work, and had I not had it for work, I wouldn't have bought one. They have less problems overall in software use...that is, you have to work and I mean REALLY work to crash one. But all the software that comes for them is expensive, and that added to the cost of the hardware makes it an investment. They're hard to break, but they're expensive (either way) to fix.

    Unless you plan on doing some heavy-hitting photo and video editing, a Mac won't pose any great advantage in terms of software.

    A laptop to do what you describe costs about $700, $900 if you want to get fancy (Joe's old laptop that I took with me to D.C. cost $900 and is VERY nice.) It's a PC, and Windows 7 is the most stable of everything I've worked with, but it can still have some truly idiotic quirks.

    Learning the Mac interface will take some time, because it is absolutely nothing like Windows.

    So, to recap:



    Hard to crash
    Hard to break
    Easy to learn (relatively)


    Not as much available software for some things
    Laptops generally run VERY HOT
    Expensive support...hardware and OS
    Hardware upgrades later on are expensive



    Tons and tons (too much?) available software
    Fairly stable, Win 7 is standard and generally doesn't crash
    Cheap. Seriously.


    More prone to crashing than Mac OS
    Windows is Windows...still has some quirks
    Laptops aren't quite as well made, though they are much better made than they were

    It really depends on preference, and how much you have to spend. I like Macs fine, I prefer them because their back end is UNIX based and I use that for my work, so I make use of a lot of tools you're never likely to see.

    But even though I like them and even though they are nice, they are not nice enough in my mind knowing computers to pay that much of a premium for them. It's the one thing that's kept me from buying one, ever.

    The final decision is yours. I found out about the overheating the hard way. No matter how hot it got though, it had to hit almost 170 degrees inside before it powered itself off to prevent frying. By that time the outer case was so hot, I couldn't touch the bottom.

    Our Mac guy at work who was certified Apple repairs said they do run hot (cause I know a sales guy will tell you I'm full of it if you ask) but trust me, I've worked in computers a LONG time...and they run hot. Average inside a normal PC is 120 degrees.

  3. By the way...if you get a PC...

    Be wary of Dells...Joe just got one and it's sort of a PITA. I rather like the Toshiba we got, so far it's been rock-solid despite abuse and one poorly-behaved game.

    Also, don't get a ThinkPad unless you need a laptop with added security. It's got a premium on it too, and it's not really worth it.

    If you get a Mac, don't get a Macbook Air...they're severely underpowered despite being neat (and your parts cost goes way up with em.) If you get the 17-inch screen, it's bright and beautiful, but it weighs an awful lot.

    I also wouldn't recommend an iPad...they're neat as hell, don't get me wrong, but they're underpowered, won't play everything on the Internet (no Flash) and have some other limitations I won't go into unless you wanna call me and have me explain.

    Whatever you pick, have fun...and if you need advice on whether something's a good deal, let me know, I'll be happy to keep some sales guy from taking you for a ride.


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