PC guy contemplating MacBook Air

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by ZBoater, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #1
    I'm a 26 year veteran of the PC, having done tech support, network engineering, etc. I'm a PC guy. :rolleyes: I've scoffed at Macs all this time. But the new MBA has me intrigued enough to contemplate coming over to "the dark side". :D

    I'm also an avid gamer, so my big honking Win 7 desktop PC will keep it's place on my desk. But for everything else I'd like to jump ship. I do maintenance on a couple of websites, so HTML editors, FTP clients, and things of that nature don't concern me. I also have access to MS Office for Mac, so productivity-wise I think I'm set.

    There's a couple of things bugging me, primarily Quicken (I'm a looong time user with online connection to my bank) and a couple of apps (like DVD Profiler) that are Windows only. So running Windows virtual will likely be in the mix.

    I have my eye on the 13" i7 256GB model. I'm thinking go big or go home... :cool:

    Any comments, suggestions, words of wisdom or encouragement (or scorn :p)? Any former Windows users out there that can share their experiences with me?
     
  2. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    #2
    I ordered the 11-inch ultimate and this will be my first Mac, and I know that's the case for a few others around here.

    It seems like you are tied to Windows with the programs you run and the stuff you do. I think you should, but then again you also said the Mac wouldn't completely replace Windows for you as your only computer.

    I would look at how you feel about the design of the OS and a Mac in general. You said you didn't like Macs before. For me, I'm a writer. So I've wanted a Mac for awhile now.
     
  3. fitshaced macrumors 68000

    fitshaced

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  4. Muncher macrumors 65816

    Muncher

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    #4
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    Between the ssd and the relatively fast ram (at least compared to my old clunker hahaha) if you run a vm it might not even be that painful an experience. I heard some news about quicken for mac being specially ported to lion (it uses power pc code which is being dropped). I've been coding on my imac for a while and it's a significantly slower machine in every respect so with the exception of perhaps wanting more screen space you should be set.

    Just remember to keep an open mind ;). When I first switched my mac felt like a toy. Then. I learned how to use it.
     
  5. ZBoater thread starter macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #5
    It's not that I dont like Macs, but rather PCs have paid the mortgage all these years. :D I also have somewhat of a philosophical difference of opinion with Apple on how much control an end user should have over the guts of their "personal" computer, but that is a topic for another thread...

    I have come to respect and admire the ease of use and advatages of a more tightly controlled ecosystem. I'm at the stage of my life where I just want the thing to work and not have to tinker with it. I have plenty of old PCs I can play with if I have the urge. What I am hoping is for a personal use computing device that will let me do what I need to do, and the new MBAs and Lion look very, very nice. I am pretty sure it will do what I need, although I expect I will need to change some elements of my personal work flow to fit into my new platform.

    That is why I am hoping some folks who have already experienced this transition can share with me some of their pearls of wisdom... :D
     
  6. ZBoater thread starter macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #6
    Thanks for that. I am expecting a steep learning curve just because of all the "bad habits" I've accumulated over the years... ;)
     
  7. JesseW6889 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    #7
    ZBoater, I was in the same position as you a year ago, right around the time the 2010 Macbook Airs came out.

    I have spent the last 14 years fixing computers and developed it into a business, which eventually grew into Web Design and SEO using ONLY Pc's for as long as I have been alive.

    Eventually, I got my hands on an iPod Touch and found myself falling in love with a company I hated. Everything just worked. I bought the MBA and I haven't looked back! If I use Windows, its because I have to. I DREAD having to now. I'm using the 2010 11" Base Model Air (had the 13" 2010 for a while) and it is the fastest computer I've ever used, there is no way around that.

    If you live in a PC world, it will be painful to have to go between the two. If you can spend all your time on your Mac, you'll be all set! Just keep in mind, it won't be long before you end up with an iMac or Mac Pro, so plan your budget accordingly and welcome to the Dark Side! ;)
     
  8. Muncher macrumors 65816

    Muncher

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    #8
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    Keep in mind the idea that apple doesn't eliminate power user options, and you can always tinker. They just don't make the mistake geeks do when they make an operating system (I'm looking at you ubuntu) which is mixing everything together without thinking out human interaction implications fully.

    In all fairness, I really shouldn't be bashing ubuntu. The last release I used was 7.04 hahaha, my brother tells me it's really solid and not at all half baked now.
     
  9. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
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    Isla Nublar
    #9
    Like you, I was a former PC who worked in IT (and still does). I jumped ship because of Vista and haven't looked back.

    I still use Windows daily at work but for everything else I'm all Mac. The productivity enhancements this OS has is amazing. (I always catch myself in Windows trying to tap spacebar in order to quick look.)

    Just ship, you'll be happy and amazed how awesome Mac OS is.
     
  10. ZBoater thread starter macrumors G3

    ZBoater

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #10
    Well, I did it. I pulled the trigger on a his and hers MBA 13" ultimates. I picked up a Time Capsule and a Magic Mouse while I was at it. If the Time Capsule installation is any indication of how the MacOS experience will be, I am in love... :apple:
     
  11. PDFierro macrumors 68040

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    #11
    Great! I can't wait until I get mine. My first Mac and it will be my only computer.
     
  12. jeffg819 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2006
    #12
    That kind of is like my first experience. I bought my first Mac in November 04 -- a PowerBook -- and came home to hook it up to a wireless router and printer. I took out a beer and figured it was going to take awhile to download drivers, etc. Ten minutes later I'm done, everything working, and I had no idea what to do next! So I sat down and started using the computer....
     
  13. Jaro65 macrumors 68040

    Jaro65

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #13
    Consider trying the Magic Trackpad. It is a revelation, if you at all enjoy using the laptop trackpad. My Magic Mouse has been sitting in a garage ever since I got the trackpad.
     
  14. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

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    Location:
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    #14
    ZBoater,

    Personally I think that once you start using - really using - the Mac you'll kick yourself for not making the switch earlier.

    However, in spirit of full disclosure, since you mentioned Quicken in your first post - Quicken for the Mac SUCKS. First, it has only a small subset of the features the PC version has, banks have to pay extra to Quicken, Inc. to have their services work on the Mac version, and the application hasn't been updated since 2007. In fact, the whole app is dependent on PowerPC code and won't run at all in its current state on OS X Lion.

    Your shiny, new MacBook Air won't run Quicken for the Mac. Nor will any other Mac running Lion. Quicken, according to rumor, has asked Apple to provide them with an in-app runtime of Rosetta specifically so their software will work. See, they have no interest in modernizing their app nor in adding the features missing from the Windows version. All this despite the fact that the CEO of Quicken sits on Apple's board of directors (a criminal shame, if you ask me).

    Quicken Essentials, which will run on Lion, is an even worse piece of software with no redeeming value whatsoever.

    If you're really a heavy Quicken user, plan on running the Windows version in a virtual machine. Or break with Quicken altogether and try iBank, Moneydance or one of the other Mac apps. Unfortunately, they're not going to have all the features of Quicken for Windows, either, and you'll likely loose data in the conversion process.

    Quicken, Inc. is clearly to blame for this. They've neglected their Mac software for so long that it'll be almost impossible for them to do anything about it.
     
  15. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #15
    Not necessarily, though Lion and it's reversed scrolling model will change things somewhat. I have used Macs at home for 3 years and have no problems switching back and forth. The biggest annoyance is that Windows uses Ctrl where Macs use the Cmd key. The latter seems more natural (Ctrl-C in particular is a stretch to type on a Windows PC).

    There are some nice things about Windows 7, and it's the best Windows yet, but I like OS X. Not having to deal with a registry, having a Migration Assistant that actually works, having less malware to deal with, and using Apple's refined hardware (e.g. the touchpad) are all benefits.
     
  16. Panch0 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #16
    Congrats! Now as soon as it arrives, pack the magic mouse up and send it back. I know you think you hate track pads and need a mouse. We all did, right up until we laid our fingers on Apple's take on the track pad. There is no room for a mouse in your new computing life - except for Gaming, and you have your Windows Desktop for that.
     
  17. ZBoater thread starter macrumors G3

    ZBoater

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #18
    Yeah, I am finding the Trackpad very, very interesting. Having used the iPad for over a year the new gestures didn't take long to feel familiar. The Magic Mouse is pretty sweet though, but I can see where it could get returned inside of 14 days...

    And yes, I am planning to install Windows 7 in Bootcamp, and also install Parallels to run Quicken, DVD Profiler, and a couple of other apps. It seems I may need a CD drive, as I've read the bootable USB drive instructions, and I can do it, but I have developed a severe case of laziness. I just want it to work with as little hassle as possible. And the external drive may come in handy for other things as well.

    I am already kicking myself for taking this long... :D
     
  18. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    #19
    I was in the same boat you are in last year. I'm a PC guy mainly and work in IT. I ended up buying the MBA in December of last year. My reasons for buying it were several. I wanted an ultra-portable and I wanted good battery life. I also wanted a Mac simply to familiarize myself with it for those occasions I get asked a Mac question, which was happening more and more often.

    7 months later, I have not regretted my decision. I'm still a PC/Windows guy primarily and I prefer W7 over OSX (Lion included) but I don't dislike OSX and love the multi-touch pad.

    It has helped me professionally also as I get asked a lot of questions anytime someone sees me working on it. Those questions lead into a conversation which lead into me handing them my card and a possible future client.
     
  19. Apple... macrumors 68020

    Apple...

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    #20
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    Magic Trackpad FTW!!! :D
     

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