should i REALLY buy a mac??

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by ndDesign, Dec 9, 2008.

  1. ndDesign macrumors newbie

    Dec 9, 2008
    I know I'm on Mac site but I'm sure there are some very knowledgable people here...

    I'm a graphic designer needing to buy a new computer. My main concerns are the life span of the computer, right now I've been using a Toshiba Satellite that I've had for 3 1/2 years that has reached its end. I'd like to go a longer time, at least four years or so.

    My second main concern is stability. As I'm sure many of you can feel my pain I'm very tired of "Illegal operations" and "Not Responding" notices in the middle of projects. I understand these types of things are unavoidable but I'd to minimize them as much as possible. OSX, XP, Vista??

    Third concern is performance. I'm looking to get Adobe Master Collection and run a least a few of these programs at a time. Specifically I'd like to be able to run Affect Effects and Photoshop without having to wait forever to for a ram preview in AE. I would really like something that moves fast and does what I want it to, when I want it to.

    I've looked a lot into the MacBook Pro, its seems like a suped up version of that (2.53GHz, Intel Core 2 Duo, 4GB memory, 320GB HD) could definitely do the job, but that runs upwards of $3000. Is that really the best way to go? I hear that it is but it's hard for me to believe that when I see a PC with3GB ram and 350GB HD for $500. Even if I had to buy a new PC every two years that would still be a better way to go.

    Is there a PC brand (Sony, Toshiba, etc) that's better than another? Mac the way to go?? Mac Pro refirb??

    Thoughts? Advise? Let me have it!

  2. south8212 macrumors 6502

    Oct 18, 2008
    Go with the macbook pro, it is worth the extra cost.

    If stability in an OS is one of your main concerns you cant go wrong with osx.

    As for your design work....I usually run DW, PS, safari, and many more applications simultaneously without any problems.....and ive only got 2gb of ram.
  3. davidleon macrumors member

    Nov 5, 2006
  4. tMac85 macrumors 65816


    Sep 15, 2007
    in a great place
    youre in design work and you dont already have a mac?!?!!
  5. MacJohnson macrumors regular


    Dec 8, 2008
    South Dakota
    I am a Advertising Major in College and they require us to get Macs for school, I thought about it for a couple weeks and I deciede that if i was going to buy a Mac I would upgrade it so i could use those type of apps to do better projects and yet when I get a job I wont have to buy a new one. Id say go with what you think would work for you, and as always its always nice to have more then what you need.
  6. Trip.Tucker Guest

    Mar 13, 2008
    Mac = no viruses
  7. dmw007 macrumors G4


    May 26, 2005
    Working for MI-6
    If you want or need mobility, then I would say to go for the 2.53GHz or 2.8GHz BTO MacBook Pro. Otherwise, I would say to go for a Mac Pro. :)
  8. OmahaGTP macrumors member

    Oct 15, 2008
    I work for an IT company, and we've gotten a few (not many) clients with some weird Mac viruses. Then they always complain to us claiming "but I thought Mac's didn't get viruses."

    They do. Just rarely, and mostly it ends up being the end user's fault to some degree (pretty much like most viruses).

    Also to the OP, I just got my first Mac, and at my work we deal with mostly business class HP's. It's considered a bit of heresy for me to have gotten one, but so far I am totally in love, and even though they won't admit it, my coworkers like it.
  9. dmw007 macrumors G4


    May 26, 2005
    Working for MI-6
    Ah, an IT Employee with a Mac...I LOVE IT! :D :)
  10. ndDesign thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 9, 2008
    i really appreciate the responses and opinions, thanks...

    so far, i'm seeing that you all think that mac is worth the $2000 difference...can I ask why more specifically?
  11. dmw007 macrumors G4


    May 26, 2005
    Working for MI-6
    For me. the big difference is the Operating System. Mac OS X is awesome, it is rock-solid, security wise (viruses, spyware, etc) it trumps Windows, all of the cool & useful features such as Expose, and the list goes on... :) :apple:

    After using Mac OS X for the last several years, there is no way I would ever switch back to using a PC.
  12. OmahaGTP macrumors member

    Oct 15, 2008
    Check out some of the crazy clearance deals on MacMall and the like. I think you'll find some generous prices on some good products, I know I did.:D

    As far as paying any extra money at all. I don't know. I've only used a Mac now for like 3 days. Well, first time since grade school and our Mac lab (OS 6 or 7). It has a certain indefinable something that is just.... well, indefinable.

    And hey, at the very least, you get a rockin' laptop case and build construction, so you can just boot into Vista full time. Which is what I was semi-planning on, but I have been very, very impressed with OSX 10.5 so far. When I found the "all applications" hot key, I think I think my brain exploded. :cool::apple:

    Edit - Also, a 'huge' difference is the trackpad. I don't even have the new models, but even with the early 08 model, the trackpad is insanely awesome. I bought a Logitech VX Nano mouse expecting to use it instead of the trackpad, because I hate... no, loathe, trackpads. But between the two tap right click, swiping three fingers left and right to go back/forward, the general response and glide. It puts all other trackpads to shame.

    Anyway, now I sound like a shill. :rolleyes:
  13. tMac85 macrumors 65816


    Sep 15, 2007
    in a great place
    Why does BMW/Mercedes charge more than a Kia?

    There has to be a luxury option for every thing. Apple is the luxury option. and you are getting what you pay for.
  14. mAc-warrior macrumors member


    May 11, 2004
    I don't know what things are like on Windows, but I haven't had any errors of any kind in over a month using my new MBP. You simply will not see things like "Illegal Operation" errors on OS X. They don't exist. Either that, or you never see them. I haven't seen an error analogous to that one once since I started using OS X (10.1, many years ago). This isn't just internet browsing either, I do video editing as well as some amateur Photoshop.

    It is not nearly a $2000 difference if you spec the machines similarly. In fact, its often $100-200. Considering your anti-virus protection costs on Windows I say that anything less than a $500 difference is moot over the lifetime of the machine. Further, these $500 notebooks you see advertised have nowhere NEAR the performance of a MBP. They all use outdated Core Duos (like a T2350 or something) that were used in Apple products in early 2006! Those processors are 2 generations old! And they're slow for your uses. The RAM is slow, often 667Mhz, whereas the MBP uses brand-new DDR3 RAM at 1067Mhz. Doesn't matter how much RAM you have if you're using a processor that's 2 years old, or the bus is half the speed. Apple uses the latest, fastest, coolest Intel processors as well. My MBP is twice as fast and half as cool as those things, not to mention it weighs often pounds less. Try to find a PC laptop with a P-series Intel processor and a 9600M GT graphics card for less than $1500. These are the things that will give you longevity from the machine.

    You simply will not find the quality of a MBP unless you look at the highest-end PC laptops out there. The software is a whole other angle, but other people have covered that decently.

  15. six.four macrumors 6502

    Oct 24, 2008
    I don't know about always getting "illegal operations" or "not responding". I work on my Windows XP desktop (my main rig) for probably > 100 hours a week and I rarely (if ever) get "illegal operation" or "not responding" errors. It's all about maintaining an efficient and clean PC.

    If you're concerned about performance - you should seriously consider investing in a desktop. Especially if you're a graphic designer.

    The screens on the new MBP are great, but cannot compare to a real IPS panel LCD. Additionally, you can build a loaded nahalem based desktop rig for under $1k - with plenty more power than you'll ever get with your top of the line macbook pro. If you really want OS X, just install leopard and you'll have an extremely powerful hackintosh.

    If a laptop is a necessity, there are other companies that produce higher end graphics work systems than the MBP (Dell Precision line comes to mind). Aside from their more advertised consumer lines, HP, Dell, and other large laptop manufacturers also offer professional lines. These less advertised professional lines offer the type of performance and longevity you'd be looking for - at a price of course.

    If you're dead set on getting a macbook pro and you're on a budget - I'd suggest getting a previous gen. I own both a previous gen MBP and the unibody MBP - and I can say with confidence that the previous gen MBP's currently offers the best value. At the online apple store, you can currently pickup a refurb 2.5ghz last gen MBP for $1500 - and it would perform very close to the $2500 2.53ghz current gen MBP. Look to your school for even deeper discounts.
  16. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    Yeah. The macbook pro will do everything you want to a degree, but if you want stellar performance across a multitude of CS4 apps working on, say, HD content for Premier or AE, you'll be better off with a Mac Pro. The fastest 7200 RPM drive you can stuff in a Macbook Pro can't compete with 10k drives in a RAID config and maxed out ram of a Mac Pro.
  17. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3


    Apr 6, 2007
    Portland, OR
    you're right a $3,000 dollar laptop can't compete with a $7,000 dollar workstation. What's your point?
  18. yaemes macrumors member

    Mar 24, 2008
    just got the new macbook pro and by god its the greatest laptop frikin' EVER. its rock solid, as in the system never does any weird crap like winblows does and the casing is solid. worth $2600 is an understatement... there are no substitutes if you want a performance laptop. oh and macs last a long time. they'll be obsolete quicker than a pc, since apple refreshes the macbook like once a year, but apple stuff lasts much longer.
  19. MowingDevil macrumors 68000


    Jul 30, 2008
    Vancouver, BC & Sydney, NSW
    To the OP, if you need to ask....
    Stick w/ your PC. Seriously, if you think a $500 laptop is what you want to spend then knock your socks off. The MBP is totally worth the money, but thats my opinion. I wouldn't have considered a PC. I have always used Macs from my background in music and would never choose a Windows machine but thats just me. Its all personal preference; if you get a Mac it will last longer (all things being equal) but if you don't mind going through several PCs in that time frame then thats probably the route to take.
  20. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    You'll want to do some research on the definition of virus and then come back and edit your posts.

    Trip.Tucker was correct.
  21. smokedog macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2008
    My 2 cent, any end high laptop is as good as the next, be it PC or Mac.

    A Macbook Pro will handle any graphic work but your way of working will change. If your a PC user the first thing that will bug you the most is the missing taskbar. Switching windows requires the use of expose and learn keyboard shortcut to work efficiently.

    But a good PC alternative would be the Sony VAIO FW21Z.

    Happy computing.
  22. OmahaGTP macrumors member

    Oct 15, 2008

    Spyware, malware, trojans, rootkits, viruses.

    It's like saying "my car has engine troubles, it won't start!"

    You - "That's your ignition, your car engine is fine."

    In reality, you have problems either way. No point in arguing semantics, Macs have issues too. Accept it.
  23. ARK macrumors 6502

    Jul 20, 2008
    Indianapolis, IN
    My current PowerMac G4 is 6 years old and still going. No problems at all!
  24. HawaiiMacAddict macrumors 6502a

    Dec 28, 2006
    On one of my Macs of course
    Aloha ndDesign,

    You will get a variety of answers on either side of the issue, but here's my input. I was a Windows user until 2006, when I finally switched to the Mac. I work in the IT sector and am very used to Windows. After having used Mac OS X for a few days, I was shocked at how much better it runs than Windows, even on an "efficient and clean PC."

    To me, that is probably the biggest reason to consider purchasing a Macintosh - the OS. Mac OS X 10.5 has been certified as UNIX, and is rock solid and more secure than Windows. Don't worry about longevity - I have a PowerMac G4 Gigabit Ethernet (built in 2000) that still runs fine, albeit a bit slowly. After all, it only has a 100MHz FSB, 2x450MHz PPC CPUs, and a 16MB graphics card :eek:

    My primary Mac is the iMac I bought in 2006. I've since upgraded it to Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, but it still does everything I need it to do (Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Xcode, etc...) and will hopefully continue to do so for several more years. I also recently purchased a new MacBook Pro, after selling my previous one (bought in 2006 also) for $1000. In other words, Macs hold their value extremely well, so your TCO (title cost of ownership) mitigates the "high" initial price. Words can not do justice to the new trackpad, although you may want to use a mouse with Photoshop.

    You will definitely get your money's worth if you purchase a Mac. Read up on Mac OS X 10.5 and visit an Apple Store, if you have one nearby. You are encouraged to get hands-on with the computers in the store, which is another welcome change. If you decide to purchase a Mac, you will shortly begin to appreciate your decision. After some time using your new Mac, you may also decide to stay the course and not go back to the PC platform.


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