I want to "INVEST" in a Mac..(n00b)

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by SecondHandSmoke, Apr 6, 2005.

  1. SecondHandSmoke macrumors newbie

    Apr 6, 2005
    Hello, I'm a 20 year old student from So Cal. I don't know that much about Macs, all I know is that I NEED to switch. I consider myself an advanced PC user and built the computer I use now. I have been wanting to switch for a while now, but the past couple have days have pushed me into overdrive. I am SICK of Windows. It's not fun to use the computer anymore..it almost feels like a chore. I almost felt like crying the other day. All I wanted to do was send a quick email to a friend and head out the door. Turned on the computer and all this crap started to pop up, new hardware this, blah blah that, ugh. And I consider my self advanced :eek: I used to say I wanted to "buy" a Mac, but now it's "invest" b/c I'm sick of Billy. I have a few n00b questions(sorry for the long intro :eek: ):

    1) I kinda know that "Tiger" will be coming out very soon, so I should at least wait until that comes out, right?

    2) I'd like to get a laptop. Are new laptops do out soon?(I heard they might, I don't want to buy one now and have the new version come out a week later)

    3)Looking for the laptop to be my main computer. I do a lot of video, audio, creative work(web, music, video). Should I look at getting an iBook or PowerBook? Any config. suggestions?

    4)I'm only 20, I don't have $2000 to drop, any suggestions on some good places to buy/get financing at?(as far as I know I have "no credit established")

    Any other knowledge or info you can give me would be much appreciated. Thanks! :)
  2. macbaseball macrumors 6502a


    Feb 27, 2005
    Northern California
    1) Yeah, definitly wait for Tiger, as it should be out by the end of the month.
    2/3) I'm pretty sure that a new Powerbook isn't coming out anytime soon, except perhaps a 17 inch high resolution, which probably wouldn't be in your price range anyways. I would definitly reccomend a Powerbook for the things you were describing. New iBooks are due out soon, but for the things you want to do, the higher resolution of the Powerbook will benefit you.
    4) I don't know anything about credit. I would reccommend getting a refurbished or a discounted Powerbook (Rev. C?) as your going to save a lot of money. I don't think there is that much of a difference between the models, but I'm not sure so don't take my word for it.

    As for model, I would reccommend getting a 15 inch, because the 17 inch is probably too big and the 12 is too small for video and web work without an external monitor.
  3. Blackheart macrumors 6502a


    Mar 13, 2004
    Don't forget that as a university student, you have an educational discount that you can take advantage of.

    Also, in regard to product release times: it doesn't have the BEST accuracy, but looking at past release spreads can be very useful.
  4. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    3) The enhanced video memory on the Powerbook will probably do you a lot of good for that kind of use, too. (I have an iBook, FWIW). As far as configuration, just the obvious thing: get as much RAM as you can afford. :D Have you had a laptop before? If not, spend some time with laptops of different screen sizes if you can. It's a personal preference thing, wrt big vs. small. Consider also whether you would be happier with a lower cost PB, such as a 12", plus a big external monitor (such as the Dell 2005FPW that people here have been raving about), since such a monitor will be better than any laptop screen for the creative stuff.

    4) Make sure you look into educational pricing (available through the Apple stores or Apple online). I'm pretty sure Apple has liberal terms for getting students to qualify for credit. Ditto the prevous recommendation, however, to look for a refurb. Apple store online also frequently has these. The Powerbook got some nifty features in its latest revision, but nothing is a dealbreaker, at least to me. These features include a scrolling trackpad (Sidetrack is cheap and does better, and there is also a hack to activate this feature in older iBooks and PBs), a faster HD (might be useful for you), BT2.0 and hard disk drop protection.
  5. anubis macrumors 6502a

    Feb 7, 2003

    Is there any particular reason you want a laptop to be your main computer? I ask, because about a year ago, my girlfriend was convinced she needed a Powerbook for her main computer. She got it, and she has taken it outside of her dorm room literally one time. Otherwise, she only uses it on her desk.

    Kind of defeats the purpose of having a portable computer, huh? So, do you want a Powerbook because you know you will be taking it out and really using it at least once or twice a week, or just because a laptop has more "cool factor"?

    If you are limiting yourself to a laptop, you are really limiting your power options and increasing your cost.

    Consider this: for $1884, I bought my current Powermac G5 with dual 1.8ghz, 512mb ram, radeon 9600, combo drive, bluetooth, wireless keyboard and mouse. It's got outstanding speed. My girlfriend's laptop, which was purchased only a couple of months before I got my G5, is markedly sluggish compared to the G5.

    So, if you're going to do a lot of video/audio/creative work, you might find the Powermac G5 to be more to your needs, especially since, IMHO, you'd find yourself very limited by the Powerbook's built-in screen on anything but the 17-inch model, especially for the web design. You'd probably find yourself wanting a nice, big, sturdy external LCD display to hook up to your Powerbook, at which point you will find yourself with a very expensive, underpowered desktop machine.

    Sorry for the rant, I've just seen many a'laptop go to proverbial waste because, although designed for portability, the users never take them anywhere ;)
  6. GorillaPaws macrumors 6502a


    Oct 26, 2003
    Richmond, VA
    I have to second this opinion. I had a laptop for the first 3 years of college and literally left it on my desk 99% of the time. I ended up getting an iMac, since it had a small footprint, and had a lot more power per $. Plus w/ the all-in-one design, It's easy to take home for the weekend/summer/winter breaks. Anyways, good luck with your decision, and welcome to the Macrumors community. You'll find the people generally are very friendly and helpful.
  7. 840quadra Moderator


    Staff Member

    Feb 1, 2005
    Twin Cities Minnesota
    If you spend time in Dunn Brothers (local coffee shop with FREE wifi (none of this pay as you go Starbucks crap!!)), then you need a laptop.

    I spend more time doing articles (freelance) and work papers at the coffee shop then I do at home, or at work.

    As far as waiting for Tiger, it looks like it will be cool, and may offer a better first experience for a Macintosh user. It will however be slightly more complex, because of the many added features to the current version. But to each their own. I have had Macintosh comptuers for years, and only recently (3 months ago) upgraded to using OSX as my primary Macintosh OS. But that is only because I bought a used G3 off of ebay that had OSX loaded on it..

    I have since switched to Apple as my primary home computer, built a G4 Digital Audio, and last week, took the plunge and ordered a DP Powermac G5. Switching is good, especially when you want to get away from Bill, and if you are also sick of Intel clone hardware.

  8. JzzTrump22 macrumors 65816

    Apr 13, 2004
    New York
    1) Yes, wait for Tiger

    2) No new notebooks are comming out right away, especially the powerbooks since they were just updated. A new iBook is due out soon, but no one knows when.

    3) Sounds like you need a PowerBook. Only problem is the PB is pricey. You could get the 12" and save yourself some money and then hook that up to an external monitor to increase the screen soze. Not a bad idea if your using it as a desktop/main computer. I think the 15/17" will run you more money then you want to spend.

    4) Have no idea.

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