My Experience Switching- A Long Time Windows User Goes Apple

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Josheua, Dec 29, 2007.

  1. Josheua macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2007
    United States
    Hey all, I wanted to take the time to write a long and detailed post about my switching experience. This is a long read, I know, but I think it will highlight some important things for those considering switching.

    Background-Proof of my Experience
    I have built computers since I was 11 years old. For the past 8 years, I have built, repaired, and troubleshooted Windows computers as well as toyed with various linux distros. I purchased an iPod about 4 years ago, (after they dropped the iPod Photo brand name and the greyscale screens and went completely color). That was my first taste of iPod technology and moving from a creative zen touch, I was quite impressed. Another three 1/2 years with windows XP and 4 months with Windows Vista (a WHOLE different, disturbing story), I decided I would switch for christmas and set my eyes on an a refurbished santa rosa macbook pro.

    What is in the box?
    My refurbished macbook pro came in pristine condition. I ordered the glossy screen as I would only be doing iPhoto editing and some minor concept art work in adobe illustrator/photoshop. I have to say that moving from a matte dell to a glossy macbook pro, I am quite impressed, I can turn the monitor to much lower brightnesses and it is still much more usable (mind you, I am sure the macbook pro benefits from LED technology). As for the box itself, the only difference between the new and refurbished is the refurbished is a unsuspecting brown box with the apple logo and a few lines of text on the side. All items included with a new computer are included with the refurbished model and all of the extras (i.e. power adapter, remote, etc.) were brand new (unless those guys are really good at reapplying those sticky wrappings that come with the new ones :) )

    How I transitioned
    The only things I needed to move over to my new mac work pictures, word files, and music (from iTunes). As such, I just used my external Western Digital hard-drive to dump my work onto, then switched out computers and dragged it over to my Mac. Using firewire 400 compared to USB made a huge difference. Transferring my music from my Dell to the hard-drive took 1.3 hours over USB 2.0 (18.67 gigs). Transferring my music to my mac over firewire 400 took (22 min). Needless to say, my next purchase will be a firewire 800 capable drive. For anyone who is transferring simple items like I was, I suggest this method because there is really no set up required (on the Apple side) and you will have a hard-drive ready to use with Time Machine.

    Windows vs. Leopard-My Opinion
    I have to say, after using a Mac for a week, I will say this: Things on a Mac just seem to be more logical. Mind you, the menu bar still irks me a little. The concept of having one bar for controlling the active program is somewhat difficult to comprehend from moving to the windows world, but its somewhat familiar placement (above your active window), makes the transition easier than you think. The visual quirks of Apple also seem to be much less annoying than Windows Vista. However, the first thing I did was download a program to turn the menu bar non-transparent (and even apply a somewhat grayish tint which makes it blend with the interface nicely in my opinion). Also, the interface for the included programs (windows calender vs. iCal, iTunes vs. Windows Media Player, iPhoto vs. Windows Photo Gallery) seems to be much better designed. Mind you, Apple has vastly more experience in designing these type of programs where Windows has just started including them with their systems. Perhaps with Windows Vista's successor, we will see a little more refinement in this area. I also prefer Dashboard to Sidebar, as I can bring my widgets up only when I need them rather have them annoying me at the side of my screen every time i go to the Desktop. There are a few things I am getting use to still. Apple is not 100% honest when they say that if you know how to use iTunes you know how to use Finder. Mind you it helps, but there are a lot of things different between the two that can hamper a smooth transition and frustrate a long time Windows user down the road (such as the different views in finder and the functions they serve). Overall however, the stability, speed, and ease of use offered by Leopard make it a much superior operating system than Windows Vista (though Vista has potential and shows that their is competition on the horizon-Though i am sure 10.6 will blow us all away...)

    Final Impression
    I am beyond happy with my choice to switch. I should have long ago. The system works much better than any PC I built myself or have purchased in the past. The included extras (such as the remote, backlit keyboard, and the mag-safe power adaptor all coupled with the operating system) makes the system worth the price (in my opinion). Is there room for improvement, always. The macbook pro could stand for a magnetic latch, a few more configuration options, and is in dire need of the option for a user replaceable hard-drive. However, it still is a stellar computer that blows the competition out of the water. I am a very Happy Switcher, and those of you considering doing the same, know that you will most likely love your Mac (unless you are just 100% attached to Window's interface for productivity- in which you will struggle initially)

    I hope this helps you guys out there switching. I am always here to answer any question you might have about Apple and my experience switching, just throw me a private message.

    Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

    -Josh :apple:
  2. CashGap macrumors 6502


    Sep 15, 2007
    Music City, USA
    You just got it at Christmas? Wow, you're going to be happy in a week. It just gets better.
  3. evilyankeefan macrumors regular


    Aug 12, 2007
    Oh just wait Josh. The MBP and OS X are the gifts that keeps on giving. I still find something new and/or tweak things and I've switched almost 2 years ago.

    Glad you're having a great time.
  4. kaiwai macrumors 6502a


    Oct 21, 2007
    Need one invoke the song, "things can only get better" ( :p

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