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Old Nov 15, 2004, 03:31 PM   #1
ViNESWiNGMAN
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Mac recommendation needed..

I recently sold my PC for $1,750 because the only thing keeping me with windows was the games/software, and the fact is that PC gaming is in a sorry state today. Sure, the hardware is there, but where's the AAA games to justify the cost? It just isn't there anymore. I found I was upgrading my hardware just for the sake of upgrading it, not becuase I needed it. Plus, I just don't have time for games like I used to.

About a year ago I bought a powerbook (1.25ghz, 15") and I absolutely loved it, but I realized that I dont have much need for a desktop AND a laptop, so I sold it before it lost it's value. I loved the damn thing though.. The OS, the style, everything..

I also found I have become to attatched to the world of computers / the internet. I want to take a step back and enjoy the better things in life. The biggest draw to me right now is the garage band app in iLife '04.. I'm always recording stuff on my computer from my guitar and mic and I think this app looks great.

Portability would be nice... however, it's not required.. Right now, I think the powerbook line is a little overpriced (compared to what you get in the ibook line) and I know it's going to go to g5 very soon (in the next 6 months.) I also like the g5 imac's (is it me though, or was the g4 design way cooler?)

I can get an educational discount, so $1674 can net me a 12" ibook (Airport / 80gb.. I'd buy another 512MB of ram somewhere else), .mac, garage band jam packs 1 and 2, m-audio 61es keyboard and the m-audio mobilepre usb audio interface. That's a lot of stuff for my $.. But, I'd also have to later on buy an external HD and an external DVD-R drive.. So we're talking almost another $300.

Or I can get an imac g5 17" w/ 250GB, airport, superdrive, 512mb (i'll double that later) and the Maudio Keystation 61es for $1886. Also a good deal. However, I'll have to wait on the jam packs if I do this option.

Now does the g5 imac have both line in and microphone inputs? or will I need the m-audio mobilepre usb audio interface for that too? If so, that's another $150. How does the quality between those and the hardwired apple ones compare?

How does the speed between the 1.2ghz g4ibook and the 1.8ghz g5imac compare? specifically, will I notice it with garage band, and day to day use? I'm also a photoshop wiz, and eventually plan to get into digital photography (another reason I'm drawn to apple.)

And my last question, right now I have a 2.1 set of klipsch speakers that I absolutely love.. But does A) the imac have a good speaker out (or any?) and B)honestly, black speakers will clash like crazy with an all white apple, so are there any white speakers that sound anywhere near as good in the $100-$150 range? I know the built in imac speakers wont do it for me.

thanks guys..
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Old Nov 15, 2004, 03:46 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ViNESWiNGMAN
I'm also a photoshop wiz...
Photoshop?
Treat yourself: get the iMac G5.

No Mac is fast enough for my Photoshop mis-adventures, even the dual 2.5s at work.

Damn the torpedoes! Speed, more speeeeed...
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Old Nov 15, 2004, 03:55 PM   #3
Fender2112
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Unless being mobile is a necessity, go with the G5 iMac. The extra horsepower will pay off. The 17" screen also comes in handy when you start adding tracks.

I don't know about the tech spec. You should be able to find this info on Apple's web site.

As for speakers. I use JBL Creatures and have been very pleased with them. They come in white and silver, both of which would compliment the iMac.

Good Luck
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 12:27 AM   #4
Solafaa
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Like you said if you need a portable mac then get the PowerBook 15", if you dont need a laptop then get a G5 iMac but you would need o upgrade RAM in whatever mac you get.
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 12:57 AM   #5
ViNESWiNGMAN
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Does the osx version of itunes support non-ipod mp3 players? (namely the creative nomad jukebox zen xtra) I had an ipod (3rd gen) but was unsatisfied with the sound quality.

Also, do you guys think the the 20" imac is worth the $200 or so jump in price from the 17" imac? I know the resolution isn't much higher, but how much better is the screen? I'm used to a 19" LCD right now.. Is the 20" lcd used in the g5 imacs the same one used in the 20" cinema displays? What about the 17" display, is the one used on the 17" powerbooks?

Last edited by ViNESWiNGMAN; Nov 16, 2004 at 02:13 AM.
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 05:01 AM   #6
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i would go with the g5 imac. prob the 20" if you are going to be doing loads of photoshop etc. the imac does have line out etc.

i second the jbl creatures, i have a set of the silver ones and the sound quality is really good.

also, how do you know there is going to be g5 powerbooks in the next 6 months?
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 05:33 AM   #7
tombo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by russed
i second the jbl creatures, i have a set of the silver ones and the sound quality is really good.
I also have a set of JBL Creatures, but I wouldn't say the sound quality is really good. They are very good for the price, and I do love them to bits but they don't cope very well at high volume (like, Maximum).
They are fine for a bedroom, but I don't think they have enough 'in hand' to be loud in a large room. I am fussy, but I get some distortion when listening to them very loud. Great for gaming and mp3, but not for listening to classical music or hard-house up high.

They look superb, though
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 07:02 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ViNESWiNGMAN
Does the osx version of itunes support non-ipod mp3 players? (namely the creative nomad jukebox zen xtra) I had an ipod (3rd gen) but was unsatisfied with the sound quality.
no. but if you want better 'sound quality' then use a higher quality compresion (192 kbps instead of 128 kbps it makes a difference and sounds MUCH better than the 96 kbps that some mp3 players compress at). with 40 GB or the new 60 GB photo iPod availble you should have plenty of room for a better compresion.

as for the computer. it sounds like the iMac would be better for you. especially if you want to buy a lot of recording stuff. having a stack of recording hardware is pretty hard to lug around with your iBook thus rendering the portability useless. the iMac will also last longer for you because it does have the G5 which will be great once Tiger comes out.
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 07:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tombo
I also have a set of JBL Creatures, but I wouldn't say the sound quality is really good. They are very good for the price, and I do love them to bits but they don't cope very well at high volume (like, Maximum).
They are fine for a bedroom, but I don't think they have enough 'in hand' to be loud in a large room. I am fussy, but I get some distortion when listening to them very loud. Great for gaming and mp3, but not for listening to classical music or hard-house up high.

They look superb, though
i would disagree but i feel the quality is very good for what you are paying for. i have never managed to get them to full volume as it was so loud i couldnt stand it! i do not think there is any distortion at pretty loud listening when listening to heavy rock, metal, dance and cheese! i think a lot of it comes down to the quality of what you are playing (all my mp3's are 192kbps aac) and also the set up of the equilizer on itunes. if you get it correct it sounds amazing, even on my pb speakers!
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 07:57 AM   #10
tombo
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I did a test when I got the speakers.
I played a cd direct over the speakers with no EQ. I got distortion at the highest volumes.
Most of my ripped music is at 128kbps AAC and some at 160kbps, and the distortion is much the same at high vol.

But mostly what they are designed for is use around their 'medium' volume. I just wanted to see how loud they went and if they couldn't handle it. I am very happy all the same and usually I play stuff quietly when I'm working. I just wanted to give a fuller perpective to VINESWINGMAN, to insure the group a little in case he says "these speakers say 8W each on the box and in my opinion they can't handle this"

No probes
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 12:26 PM   #11
ViNESWiNGMAN
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Quote:
no. but if you want better 'sound quality' then use a higher quality compresion (192 kbps instead of 128 kbps it makes a difference and sounds MUCH better than the 96 kbps that some mp3 players compress at). with 40 GB or the new 60 GB photo iPod availble you should have plenty of room for a better compresion.
I always rip to the highest compression rate, or uncompressed.. My problem with the ipod was that at loud volumes it distorted. The problem is with the signal-to-noise ratio on the device..


I'll look into the JBL Creatures... But I think I'm going to have a hard time replacing my THX 2.1 Klipsch speakers. I'm going to see how good they look alongside my mac.. I dont know if you guys have heard these speakers before, but they are amazing!

Thanks for the suggestions.
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Old Nov 16, 2004, 01:56 PM   #12
fedupwithIbook
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Bose Speakers are the way to go

Bose makes the best speakers for computers and they work with the Mac and I-pod. The best thing is their price--less than $100 (right around that price). They come with the subwoofer builtin, making them easy to move around. They are called Media Mate. They come in a few colors that definitely match the Imac or any other Mac color.

As for which computer--I say stay away from the Ibook. They have a logic board problem that still is not fixed--I know I've gone through 5 of them already.
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Old Nov 17, 2004, 12:38 AM   #13
ViNESWiNGMAN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fedupwithIbook
Bose makes the best speakers for computers

no highs? no lows? go with bose...

I gotta disagree with you, man.




Creative iTrigue 3400 2.1

i went to the store and checked out these speakers, and although they aren't *quite* as good as the klipsch's they come real damn close, and look damn nice too. I'm surprised nobody suggested them..

Last edited by ViNESWiNGMAN; Nov 17, 2004 at 12:50 AM.
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