Office Suite Dilemma

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by rlm22b, Mar 10, 2008.

  1. rlm22b macrumors member


    Mar 8, 2008
    I am a mathematics major and economics minor who plans to purchase his first mac in a few days. I discovered today while reading that Office 2008 does not have the the Data Analysis package/add ins. I really need this so I'm trying to weigh my options. Excel 04 I believe is the only spreadsheet software out for Mac at the moment with that functionality. I really hope I'm wrong on that.

    I was thinking that I should try to obtain a copy of Office 04. Then I was thinking would I really be missing out on Word and Powerpoint 08 by doing this? And then a combination of Excel 04 and Word and Powerpoint 08 would require me to have Office 04 and Office 08 which would get expensive. Then I was thinking Excel 04 and iWork 08. I hear Keynote makes great presentations but they aren't the most compatible with Windows and I'm not familar with Pages at all. I'm not sure how I should go about this. Any advice?
  2. kuwisdelu macrumors 65816

    Jan 13, 2008
    I think Office 04 and iWork 08 would be a wonderful combination for someone in your situation. If you need the features of Excel 2004, there's really no good replacement for them, and Office 2008 isn't much of an option. I don't think Office 2008 is all that great anyway, and I think you'll find Pages and Keynote much nicer than Word and PowerPoint. Numbers is lacking, but since you'll have Excel 2004 (and since that's what you need) that doesn't really matter. Keynote is a wonderful for presentations, and it blows Powerpoint away. You can export to Powerpoint, and you'll lose any special Keynote features you may have used, but chances are it can still be much better than a Powerpoint. Personally, I find Pages much better than Word, too. iWork as a whole loads a lot faster than either MS Office for Mac, anyway.

    iWork is great for Pages and Keynote. And if you can locate MS Office 2004 for Excel (shouldn't be too hard, my university is still selling the 2004 Mac Office as it hasn't received 2008 yet), then you should be all set. I don't think there's anything in 2008 really that you'd be missing out on other than a new interface. They even removed macros from it.

    If you can get Office 2004 from your school, it should be fairly cheap. If you can only afford one, then Office 2004 should be fine for you. If you can manage to get both, Office 2004 + iWork is they way to go if you need real Excel functionality and the best word processor/presentation software.
  3. digitalnicotine macrumors 65816


    Jan 11, 2008
    Have you looked into Open Office? It's a free multi platform office suite. Perhaps that will fit into your needs? I haven't heard good things about the new Office 08 suite by MS. Perhaps it's just too freshly released and buggy, but on the other hand, having the older version may be a good way to go. Good luck on resolving this.
  4. unknown87 macrumors regular

    Mar 19, 2007
    Just to even things out slightly... I've been using Office 08 solidly for a while now and I've had virtually no problems. Yes it takes about 10 seconds longer to open than it probably should, but I don't find this to be a real problem. I've had only one crash too and everything was returned via auto-recovery.

    For the OP, I think Office 04 is the way forward. That way you can try the rest of the suite and if it doesn't suit, you can try iWork.
  5. powerbook911 macrumors 68040


    Mar 15, 2005
    If you hurry up and find Office 2004 at a retailer, you could buy it at the full student price, then send this in: Mac_Technology_Guarantee.pdf

    and MS would send you the 08 version too, but you have to buy by march 15 and submit by April 15.

    Of course, you could also get Office 2004 on ebay cheap, but the above way you might try, if you want both versions.
  6. rlm22b thread starter macrumors member


    Mar 8, 2008
    Thank you all for your help so far in this decision.

    How much is full student price? Would that include if I got it at a further discounted price through a university? Say $129. I may be able to see if some friends at other universities could get it cheaper.

    I guess my first plan of action could be to just acquire Office 04 and see how it goes first. I hear it's slow however on Intel Macs. How true is this? I have never used it extensively but from what I have seen it moves quick. That was on a non-SR MacBook. I plan to get one of the new MacBook Pros.

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