Thinking about making the switch...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by rpavlick3, Dec 21, 2004.

  1. rpavlick3 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2004
    #1
    2005 is almost upon us and I'm ready for my biannual upgrade to a new computer. For the first time, I am giving serious consideration to buying a Mac, specifically a PowerMac Dual 2.0Ghz G5.

    I like the elegance of the design, interior and exterior. I like the seamless integration of an innovative, friendly user interface with the stability and power of Unix. I like running X11 apps along side native apps. The price is higher than building my own dual Opteron but I'm starting to think it might be worth it.

    I have a few questions:

    1) Is there a good book for Windows powerusers switching over to Macs? Is there a book for people proficient in Unix?]

    I briefly glanced at a few books in the local bookstore but they seemed to be written for the computer illiterate or people upgrading from Mac OS 9.

    2) Can I use my current DVI monitors or do I need to buy Apple displays?

    3) Are there any other good Mac websites other than MacRumors?

    4) When does Apple usually release new machines? Should I wait a few months til the next release or is now a good time to buy?

    I don't need to upgrade in any urgent way. I just like to get a new computer every odd year. Sometimes I get it in January, sometimes I wait till December.

    3)
     
  2. Rod Rod macrumors 68020

    Rod Rod

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #2
    It's great you're seriously considering not only switching, but doing it in a big way by buying a seriously fast computer.

    To address your questions:

    1. I don't know if there are any Windows power user Mac introduction books, but Mac OS X for Dummies is good. Once you learn the keyboard shortcuts you'll be set. There are a number of books out there about using the Unix underpinnings of Mac OS X. Whichever books about Mac OS X you get just be sure to get the 10.3 / Panther edition.

    2. Yes.

    3. www.macosxhints.com ... This site will astound and amaze you. Incidentally the webmaster has compiled hundreds of hints (many of which relate to Unix type stuff) into a book, "Mac OS X Power Hound Panther Edition."

    4. We can only guess based on past patterns. The Buyers Guide tab in this site may give an indication.

    If you want to save a few bucks you can buy a refurb, as they come with a full warranty.
     
  3. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #3
    Just wanted to clarify that the "yes" in (2) means that you can use your current DVI monitors. All PowerMacs now ship with two DVI ports, not the 1 ADC/1 DVI port from before.
     
  4. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #4
    And I also want to congratulate you on your consideration of Macs - I know of no one who has switched over and regretted it.

    There are numerous web sites and forums (like this one) where you can ask questions about how to do something on the Mac which you know how to do on Windows - many of us use Windows (one flavor or another) as well, and, even if not, most of us know most of the shortcuts. Feel free to ask.

    I recommend picking up some OS X books (some suggestions are "Mac OS X Killer Tips" by Scott Kelby as a quick way to learn cool Mac shortcuts and capabilities - each tip takes only seconds to read, and you can read the book in any order - and "Mac OS X - The Missing Manual" by David Pogue, which is more in-depth). As far as UNIX goes, pretty much any UNIX experience translates perfectly to OS X. The Terminal app, for example, is just a UNIX shell.

    As far as updates go, the three major announcement times are mid January (MacWorld San Fran), mid-June (World Wide Developers Conference) and the Paris Expo, usually in August. Of course, announcements can come at any time.

    It is unlikely that anything earth-shattering is going to be announced for the PowerMac line in the near future. I expect a dual-3 GHz chip to come out relatively soon, likely by June if not before then, but the architecture won't change much for a while. The PowerBook line is expecting change within six months (hopefully). Of course, you never really know, and, as someone who's used a dual-2 for over a year now, it's plenty fast.

    I wish you luck with your decision and, hopefully, your purchase!
     
  5. Steven1621 macrumors 6502a

    Steven1621

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2003
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #5
    I find the best way to find tips for the mac is to just read the macrumors forums on a regular basis. I have have stumbled on many great things randomly.

    I personally didn't find the books very helpful. Too general was my problem with them. Maybe it was just the book I was using.
     
  6. Rod Rod macrumors 68020

    Rod Rod

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #6
    Yup good clarification. However, only nVidia 6800 (Ultra and GT)-equipped Power Macs ship with two DVI ports. Every single other currently shipping Power Mac has 1 ADC and 1 DVI.

    If you'd like to have dual-DVI, well it's only about $40 away in the form of an ADC - DVI adapter. Here's Dr. Bott's, Belkin's and a couple of examples from eBay.
     
  7. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #7
  8. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #8
    Yup. Sorry. Jumping the gun. :eek: I expect two DVI ports to be the norm shortly.
     
  9. bryanc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    Fredericton, NB Canada
    #9
    Looks like your questions have been answered

    So I'll just add my encouragement: go for it! Apart from the Powerbook line-up, which is really starting to lag compared to the competition, there's never been a better time to switch.

    I know 16 people who've switched from Wintel/Linux to Macs over the past couple of years, and every single one of them has been amazed at how good the Mac platform has become. None of them would consider going back, and several have become unmitigated Mac evangelists.

    So the only thing for you to worry about is that you'll be so completely overwhelmed with how insanely great Macs are that you'll start effusing to all your friends and they'll think you've joined a cult.

    Cheers.
     
  10. Cooknn macrumors 68020

    Cooknn

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2003
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #10
    I came in from Windows to a Dual 2Ghz G5 last year and haven't looked back since. This box ROCKS.
     

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