Do you *know* that Apple is better?

profmatt

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Mar 7, 2015
1,612
1,604
UK
I was reading an article about diamond and cubic zirconium earlier on today.

Apparently diamonds were originally prized for their beauty and this is in part where their great cost came from. But there is a scientific argument that cubic zirconium is more beautiful than diamond, yet diamond remains far more expensive.

It made me wonder about Apple products.

I'm slavishly loyal to Apple. I joke to my friends that I'm addicted to Apple products -- except I'm not entirely sure I'm joking.

This year I spent over £2,000 on a new laptop. That's a huge amount of money. I think that's more than I've ever spent on any single thing other than my car.

Yet I didn't consider any other options. It was Apple or nothing. And the new MacBook Pro was, er, new. So I had to have it.

Many people on these forums criticised the new MacBook. I ignored them.

How do you know that your Apple products are the best in their class?
 

QzzB

macrumors regular
Mar 7, 2015
128
55
London
I think what people think are better or the value is subjective. Its all about your use-case and what you think is value for money.

There is no such thing as best in class, or the best of a product - its all subjective based on your use case. If all you do is browse the web, then a chromebook will be the best in class for a laptop for you, for example.

I personally don't really look at reviews that much - the new MacBook Pro was criticised for not having newest processor or the limited RAM. some reviews I saw said that it works perfectly for their needs. Often people think Pro means you need have high amounts of everything, but if you look at your specific use case and make a judgement you can't go wrong.
 

theluggage

macrumors 601
Jul 29, 2011
4,672
3,509
Apparently diamonds were originally prized for their beauty and this is in part where their great cost came from. But there is a scientific argument that cubic zirconium is more beautiful than diamond, yet diamond remains far more expensive.
People buy jewellery to display their wealth: being expensive is a selling point - value for money is not an issue.

This year I spent over £2,000 on a new laptop. That's a huge amount of money. I think that's more than I've ever spent on any single thing other than my car.
(A) How many hours a day do you spend sitting in your car?
(B) How many hours a day do you spend using your computer?

Hardware-wise, you have to bear in mind that comparable PC ultra-slim laptops aren't spectacularly cheaper - e.g. the entry-level non-TB MacBook Pro is £1450; a comparable Dell XPS 13 (15W i5 processor, 'retina-like' display, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD) is £1,300 - the Microsoft Surface Laptop with similar specs is £1250, HP Spectre - same ballpark. They all cranked up their prices in the last year. If you move further up the price range, you will find, say, Dell XPS 15 models that start to seriously undercut the higher-end 15" MBPs in terms of on-paper specs - but you're not talking diamonds vs. cubic zirconium.

What you will get with PCs is (a) a range of far cheaper options that are thicker, heavier, have cheaper-feeling keyboards and trackpads, lower-resolution screens, worse battery life etc. but will, nevertheless, get the job done for a fraction of the price and (b) the option, for serious work, of getting a PC tower customised to the exact specs you want (The Mac Pro is, basically, a Final Cut Pro/Logic Pro appliance instead of a general purpose workstation).

Software wise, Windows 10... will get the job done. For my money, its not as nice as Mac OS in terms of responsiveness or attention to detail (including the ability to cope with a mixture of Retina/4k-class and standard def displays) - plus I dabble in web development, for which Mac OS's mixture of Unix, a nice GUI and support for Office, Adobe etc. plus well-designed native alternatives hits the absolute sweet spot. Linux is great on servers, or to write text-based software, but the application software... least said, soonest mended.

However, everything I need to do I could do in Windows or Linux (and, in the past, I have done).

Also, a bit of perspective: I've been using personal computers since 1980 - and for from that time until a few years back, a decent (by the standards of the day), non-Apple personal computer system (processor, keyboard, display, disc drives) for serious use came in at about £1500. Or, something that would let you learn BASIC and play Pacman, about £300 (by the time you'd bought the computer, a second hand portable TV, cassette player etc.)

Except £1500 in 1980 money is the equivalent of £6000 today, and the "decent system" is now several orders of magnitude more powerful and has shrunk from a big beige box to a laptop (and probably has a bigger display than the 9"-12" CCTV monitor you used in the 1980s)...

What has happened recently, though, is that honeymoon has come to an end: computers aren't doubling in power every 2 years and the prices are starting to go up with inflation.
 

OriginalAppleGuy

macrumors 6502a
Sep 25, 2016
624
569
Virginia
Diamonds are expensive because DeBeers makes them that way. They control every aspect of the raw diamond trade and take out those who get in their way. Getting a Cubic Zarconia rock is not thought any differently than say a Chinese knock-off.

There are many ways to state "best in class". But what really matters is customer experience. When they use your products, are they able to do more with less time required? QzzB stated use cases are what matter. Which is true. And you may know what your use cases are today but may not tomorrow. When it comes to technology, unless you have a very short term need, it's always best to buy the most you can afford.

Apple does something very well that others do not. They make products with operating systems that all integrate very well together. They make the user experience somewhat seemless. And that is the secret sauce.

When comparing costs between a MacBook Pro and its competitors, it's important to consider what equates to an apples to apples (no pun intended) comparison. The build quality of the MacBook Pro is only similar to Pro or Enterprise versions of competitors. Which, often are more expensive than their consumer models.

Is Apple the best in the world? Not with everything. You should compare to others. However, I often think of the Nissan NSX where Apple is concerned. That car wasn't #1 in everything. In fact, it wasn't #1 in anything. It was the second fastest, second best handling, second at just about everything. But if you had one, you would be pretty much guaranteed victory as it had the edge over its competition as long as you weren't just going in a straight line.
 

Starfia

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2011
682
357
profmatt –

I'm also no expert on other products.

Of course, I do know a lot about Apple's products. And I have much more insight into the thinking that went into a lot of them. I've listened to almost everything I can find that Steve Jobs and Tim Cook have ever said about values (the environment, privacy, inclusion, our place as people on the planet and the universe), approaches to technology, the world, and how all this stuff is created. I'm a developer and dive somewhat deeply into some of those things.

Apple products are not better for everyone. They're not better for many gamers who prioritize sheer graphics muscle on their desktops. They're not better for early adopters of high-end VR during this particular period. They're not better for people who have a different philosophy on which parts of a computer's software should be tightly bolted and fastened into place, and which should be accessible and hackable. I think all of Apple's executives would agree with just about all of that. Apple receives plenty of praise and criticism from the masses – some of the criticism is deserved, and I think they'd agree. Some is uninformed or misinformed and not deserved.

Apple products are certainly better for me – not only do I resonate with their waxings, but I feel and experience it daily. They've helped me make the modest living I have along several fronts: as a programming enthusiast, artist, musician and more. I experience the occasional frustration, but the emphasis is on "occasional." I remember technology a decade ago – if it was still like that, I don't know whether I'd have weathered it before abandoning it for pursuits I was less passionate about.

I'm no expert on other products, but I'm not oblivious to them. I haven't done similar dives into Android, Windows or Linux, but I've gleaned what I can from their users, and from hearsay. The competing companies, whoever they are, are still made of cool people attempting to do cool things. They may not align with Apple's spirit, but there's clearly something driving them, and that's wonderful. If someone else truly and broadly beats Apple, we all win. Even Apple, because they'll have a challenge in their lap. And if they don't embrace that, they're not Apple.

But to my perception, that's still hypothetical.
 

Wando64

macrumors 6502a
Jul 11, 2013
748
827
If I could install MacOS on an HP laptop (without silly hacks) and IOS on a Samsung tablet, I would consider them. As it stands I go for the only option that allows me to use my OSs and ecosystem of choice. For me it's all about the software.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,803
33,772
Boston
How do you know that your Apple products are the best in their class?
I ignore that term and rather look for a well built machine that fits my needs and feel that I'm getting value for my money. Does the Mac check off those for me? In the past it has, but recent events have caused me to rethink what my next computer will be.
 

lowendlinux

macrumors 603
Sep 24, 2014
5,258
6,508
Germany
I was reading an article about diamond and cubic zirconium earlier on today.

Apparently diamonds were originally prized for their beauty and this is in part where their great cost came from. But there is a scientific argument that cubic zirconium is more beautiful than diamond, yet diamond remains far more expensive.

It made me wonder about Apple products.

I'm slavishly loyal to Apple. I joke to my friends that I'm addicted to Apple products -- except I'm not entirely sure I'm joking.

This year I spent over £2,000 on a new laptop. That's a huge amount of money. I think that's more than I've ever spent on any single thing other than my car.

Yet I didn't consider any other options. It was Apple or nothing. And the new MacBook Pro was, er, new. So I had to have it.

Many people on these forums criticised the new MacBook. I ignored them.

How do you know that your Apple products are the best in their class?

Never worry about the consensus of a forum particularly a tech forum, if your MBP make you happy and productive then that's all that's important.
 
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Kcetech1

macrumors regular
Nov 24, 2016
190
92
Alberta Canada
I ignore that term and rather look for a well built machine that fits my needs and feel that I'm getting value for my money. Does the Mac check off those for me? In the past it has, but recent events have caused me to rethink what my next computer will be.
Major reason I have a varying bunch of computers for my work, best tools for the jobs I do.
 
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