Switching to a Mac - HELP!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Doju, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. Doju macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #1
    So, I'm switching to a Mac, and am willing to spend quite a bit of money to do it. Though, I have quite a few questions before I make the switch; could you guys help?


    1. I'm going to buy an iMac. Will I notice any difference between the 2.8GHz and the 3.06GHz model?

    2. Will I notice a big difference between the 256mb and the 512mb in the graphics card?

    3. What in god's name does a Mac Mini do? Xserve?

    4. What's the difference between AirPort Express and AirPort Extreme, besides price? Is Extreme just plain better?

    5. What do the ethernet ports do on the AirPort Extreme? Like, is that where you'd plug in your printer to it, and then be able to print to that printer from anywhere in the house? Do I need to plug that into my computer to use it? How good is the range on the Extreme?

    6. I'm going to buy either a Macbook, or a Macbook Pro. My only worry with the Macbook (I could care less about the specs, the 2.4GHz model does everything I want x10) but the screen size scares me. I have an HP Compaq laptop right now, at 15" (cost me about $500 for 2GHz and 2GB of RAM, heh) will I notice a big difference between changing to a 13"? I'm sort of doubting I'll care much about the 2" difference, anyone else make the change and have some advice? On the bright side, it would be more portable, right?

    7. When buying a Macbook/iMac, does iLife automatically come with it? What about iWork? iWork is a lot better than Microsoft Office, right? Especially Pages.

    8. Why should I buy an AppleTV? Can anyone recommend it? The one thing I don't understand about it, is do I buy the movie ON the actual television from iTunes, or do I buy it on iTunes on my computer, and 'send'/stream it to my AppleTV? Is it worth the price, and is there better devices to do this?

    9. In regards to the Apple Keyboard. I'm not sure whether or not to buy the wireless, or ... wired ... model. With the wired model, it seems to have a lot more keys (number pad, etc.) is that a handicap, do you wireless users miss it? I know it uses batteries, how often do you have to replace them, I don't want to have to replace the batteries in my keyboard excessively.

    10. In regards to the Mighty Mouse. Again, wired or wireless? I'd definitely go with wireless, but the same question I must pose again, does the battery go quite quickly? Like, how many days? What do the buttons on the side of the mouse do - back and forward? Can I right click with it, like I would a normal microsoft mouse?

    11. For us old Windows users, does the lack of 'our delete' get annoying? I kinda doubt CTRL+Delete is that annoying, but... yeah.

    12. Is there anyway to COMPLETELY maximize the current program running? Like, I know the plus button fits it to the screen, but I'd like it to completely fill the screen like on Windows, can I do this?

    13. Would you recommend a Time Capsule? If I buy one of these, do I need an AirPort Extreme?

    14. Should I buy refurbished, or from a third-party retailer like MacMall? How do I get the educational discount working on the Canadian site?

    15. Do I get a free printer with my iMac purchase?

    16. It kicks the crap out of Vista/Windows 7, right? (Mac OS X, that is - especially with Snow Leopard.) It's just a better OS, right? Like, more stable, obviously, almost no viruses (how often does a virus come up?), and a lot more visually pleasing, especially with the dock and the like.

    17. For an average Windows user, will I have a lot of compatibility problems switching to a Mac?

    18. Do I get a mac e-mail address (@me.com, right?) free? Or do I need MobileMe?

    19. What in god's name does Firewire do? Do I really need it? Can I hook up my Macbook( Pro) to a display without it? Will I have compatibility issues hooking it up?

    20. What does the Option, Command and Apple key do?

    21. Can I open Microsoft Office documents (word, powerpoint, etc.) just for viewing if I don't have Microsoft Office 2008 installed?

    22. Is it true that Mac OS X requires 2-4x the RAM of a Vista computer? How much RAM will I need to effectively use a Mac? How much does a gig of RAM cost, I assume I shouldn't buy it from Apple?

    23. Convince me why gloss > matte/is suitable. :p

    24. Does the iMac/Macbook models get really hot/fans get really loud?

    25. What's overclocking mean?

    26. Is iPhoto and iMovie as easy to use as they say?

    27. How good are the iMac speakers/will I need another kind?

    28. Should I get a carrying case, do they scratch easy?

    29. How do I turn the iMac on?

    30. Big difference between SSD and HDD? DDR2 and DDR3?

    THANKS! I may add more after. I know this is a lot of questions but I greatly appreciate it, and it should be fairly easy for a seasoned OS Xer.
     
  2. techound1 macrumors 68000

    techound1

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    #2
    Ooh, I'll take #3. A MacMini is a cheap bring your own display, keyboard, and mouse suck-in-the-switchers-who-are-cheap device, er, desktop.
     
  3. HiFiGuy528 macrumors 68000

    HiFiGuy528

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #3
    thats a lot of questions. :):):):)

    1. I'm going to buy an iMac. Will I notice any difference between the 2.8GHz and the 3.06GHz model?

    - not really

    2. Will I notice a big difference between the 256mb and the 512mb in the graphics card?

    - better video playback for games or graphic designs

    3. What in god's name does a Mac Mini do? Xserve?

    - iMac without the monitor --- Server version of OS X

    4. What's the difference between AirPort Express and AirPort Extreme, besides price? Is Extreme just plain better?

    - AX wireless is an expander --- AE is a N wireless router

    5. What do the ethernet ports do on the AirPort Extreme? Like, is that where you'd plug in your printer to it, and then be able to print to that printer from anywhere in the house? Do I need to plug that into my computer to use it? How good is the range on the Extreme?

    - AE is a wireless router for your modem

    6. I'm going to buy either a Macbook, or a Macbook Pro. My only worry with the Macbook (I could care less about the specs, the 2.4GHz model does everything I want x10) but the screen size scares me. I have an HP Compaq laptop right now, at 15" (cost me about $500 for 2GHz and 2GB of RAM, heh) will I notice a big difference between changing to a 13"? I'm sort of doubting I'll care much about the 2" difference, anyone else make the change and have some advice? On the bright side, it would be more portable, right?

    - I thought you wanted an iMac???

    7. When buying a Macbook/iMac, does iLife automatically come with it? What about iWork? iWork is a lot better than Microsoft Office, right? Especially Pages.

    - iLife is stock, iWork is $79

    8. Why should I buy an AppleTV? Can anyone recommend it? The one thing I don't understand about it, is do I buy the movie ON the actual television from iTunes, or do I buy it on iTunes on my computer, and 'send'/stream it to my AppleTV? Is it worth the price, and is there better devices to do this?

    - Because you like buying shows on iTunes and you don't have cable

    9. In regards to the Apple Keyboard. I'm not sure whether or not to buy the wireless, or ... wired ... model. With the wired model, it seems to have a lot more keys (number pad, etc.) is that a handicap, do you wireless users miss it? I know it uses batteries, how often do you have to replace them, I don't want to have to replace the batteries in my keyboard excessively.

    - Go wireless. what year are we in?

    10. In regards to the Mighty Mouse. Again, wired or wireless? I'd definitely go with wireless, but the same question I must pose again, does the battery go quite quickly? Like, how many days? What do the buttons on the side of the mouse do - back and forward? Can I right click with it, like I would a normal microsoft mouse?

    - Go wireless. what year are we in? --- You can assign them to do Expose' dance

    11. For us old Windows users, does the lack of 'our delete' get annoying? I kinda doubt CTRL+Delete is that annoying, but... yeah.

    - Mac users can adapt to changes

    12. Is there anyway to COMPLETELY maximize the current program running? Like, I know the plus button fits it to the screen, but I'd like it to completely fill the screen like on Windows, can I do this?

    - Drag a corner of the window

    13. Would you recommend a Time Capsule? If I buy one of these, do I need an AirPort Extreme?

    - No & no

    14. Should I buy refurbished, or from a third-party retailer like MacMall? How do I get the educational discount working on the Canadian site?

    - Buy form Macmall for better price and no sales tax

    15. Do I get a free printer with my iMac purchase?

    - Only from Apple

    16. It kicks the crap out of Vista/Windows 7, right? (Mac OS X, that is - especially with Snow Leopard.) It's just a better OS, right? Like, more stable, obviously, almost no viruses (how often does a virus come up?), and a lot more visually pleasing, especially with the dock and the like.

    - You'll never go back

    17. For an average Windows user, will I have a lot of compatibility problems switching to a Mac?

    - No

    18. Do I get a mac e-mail address (@me.com, right?) free? Or do I need MobileMe?

    - Yes ---- if you want everything sync

    19. What in god's name does Firewire do? Do I really need it? Can I hook up my Macbook( Pro) to a display without it? Will I have compatibility issues hooking it up?

    - You don't need it --- Apple agrees

    20. What does the Option, Command and Apple key do?

    - Shortkey commands

    21. Can I open Microsoft Office documents (word, powerpoint, etc.) just for viewing if I don't have Microsoft Office 2008 installed?

    - yes

    22. Is it true that Mac OS X requires 2-4x the RAM of a Vista computer? How much RAM will I need to effectively use a Mac? How much does a gig of RAM cost, I assume I shouldn't buy it from Apple?

    - I thought you wanted a Mac --- No one wants Vista!

    23. Convince me why gloss > matte/is suitable. :p

    - Go gloss

    24. Does the iMac/Macbook models get really hot/fans get really loud?

    - Not hotter than any PC

    25. What's overclocking mean?

    - Hackers

    26. Is iPhoto and iMovie as easy to use as they say?

    - Yes

    27. How good are the iMac speakers/will I need another kind?

    - Garbage --- Buy Adam Audio if you want the BEST

    28. Should I get a carrying case, do they scratch easy?

    - yes

    29. How do I turn the iMac on?

    - Power in the back

    30. Big difference between SSD and HDD? DDR2 and DDR3?

    - SSD is a type of drive DDR is a type of memory ---- two different animals
     
  4. duncyboy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #4
    So, I'm switching to a Mac, and am willing to spend quite a bit of money to do it. Though, I have quite a few questions before I make the switch; could you guys help?
    1. I'm going to buy an iMac. Will I notice any difference between the 2.8GHz and the 3.06GHz model?


    What will you be using your Mac for? Video encoding, gaming, iMovie/Final Cut, 3D Rendering will be quicker but not massively so.

    2. Will I notice a big difference between the 256mb and the 512mb in the graphics card?


    If you're gaming, yes. If you're not- no.

    3. What in god's name does a Mac Mini do? Xserve?


    What do you want it to do? It's a computer. Xserve is a rackmount server.

    4. What's the difference between AirPort Express and AirPort Extreme, besides price? Is Extreme just plain better?


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AirPort#AirPort_Express_.28802.11g_or_802.11n.29

    and

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AirPort#AirPort_Extreme_.28802.11n.29


    5. What do the ethernet ports do on the AirPort Extreme? Like, is that where you'd plug in your printer to it, and then be able to print to that printer from anywhere in the house? Do I need to plug that into my computer to use it? How good is the range on the Extreme?


    Dunno about the range. The Ethernet is for wired connectivity or, as you asked, a printer.


    6. I'm going to buy either a Macbook, or a Macbook Pro. My only worry with the Macbook (I could care less about the specs, the 2.4GHz model does everything I want x10) but the screen size scares me. I have an HP Compaq laptop right now, at 15" (cost me about $500 for 2GHz and 2GB of RAM, heh) will I notice a big difference between changing to a 13"? I'm sort of doubting I'll care much about the 2" difference, anyone else make the change and have some advice? On the bright side, it would be more portable, right?


    Dunno.


    7. When buying a Macbook/iMac, does iLife automatically come with it? What about iWork? iWork is a lot better than Microsoft Office, right? Especially Pages.


    iLife comes with Macbooks, iMacs, Mac Pro's and Mac Minis. Never used iWork so I don't know.

    11. For us old Windows users, does the lack of 'our delete' get annoying? I kinda doubt CTRL+Delete is that annoying, but... yeah.


    Actually it does annoy me but it's not a deal breaker.

    12. Is there anyway to COMPLETELY maximize the current program running? Like, I know the plus button fits it to the screen, but I'd like it to completely fill the screen like on Windows, can I do this?


    You can hide the dock and re-size a window to be as big or as little as you wish.

    13. Would you recommend a Time Capsule? If I buy one of these, do I need an AirPort Extreme?
    Dunno about the recommendation, never used one, but a Time Capsule is a basically a wired and wireless router with a hard drive built in.

    16. It kicks the crap out of Vista/Windows 7, right? (Mac OS X, that is - especially with Snow Leopard.) It's just a better OS, right? Like, more stable, obviously, almost no viruses (how often does a virus come up?), and a lot more visually pleasing, especially with the dock and the like.


    Windows 7 and Snow Leopard aren't out yet so I dunno. I used Windows (98, SE, XP Pro and XP MCE) for about 9 years and have been using Leopard since March 31st this year. In my experience Leopard is much more stable, can be left running with minimal 'rest' for weeks at a time. I have no anti-virus, no anti-spyware, no disk defragmenter, no CCleaner-type software.

    17. For an average Windows user, will I have a lot of compatibility problems switching to a Mac?


    Depends what you use your PC for. I tried to resist the temptation to find a way to do Windows-type stuff on OS X. 8 times out of 10 the Mac way is better.

    18. Do I get a mac e-mail address (@me.com, right?) free? Or do I need MobileMe?


    No, you need a MobileMe subscription.

    19. What in god's name does Firewire do? Do I really need it? Can I hook up my Macbook( Pro) to a display without it? Will I have compatibility issues hooking it up?


    If you don't know what it is, how can you miss it? Firewire was/is used by many for cameras, audio devices, external hard drives- even older iPods used to use it. Firewire's like an alternative to USB- nothing to do with displays.

    20. What does the Option, Command and Apple key do?


    What do the CTRL, ALT and SHIFT keys do on your Windows keyboard?

    21. Can I open Microsoft Office documents (word, powerpoint, etc.) just for viewing if I don't have Microsoft Office 2008 installed?
    Depends on the file-type. iWork and the free, open-source Neo-Office are compatibly with pretty much all MS Office files.

    22. Is it true that Mac OS X requires 2-4x the RAM of a Vista computer? How much RAM will I need to effectively use a Mac? How much does a gig of RAM cost, I assume I shouldn't buy it from Apple?


    Probably the other way round. OS X is very memory efficient and, with general use, 1GB is plenty. If you're editing photos, videos or gaming then obviously the more RAM the better.

    Shop online for RAM- I bought the RAM upgrade for my iMac from Crucial, miles cheaper.

    23. Convince me why gloss > matte/is suitable. :p


    No.


    24. Does the iMac/Macbook models get really hot/fans get really loud?


    Can't comment on the Macbook but my iMac is virtually silent. I can only hear it when burning a CD/DVD.

    26. Is iPhoto and iMovie as easy to use as they say?


    Who are 'They'? The druids?

    27. How good are the iMac speakers/will I need another kind?


    For watching TV shows they're OK- no better or worse than a flat-screen TV's speakers.

    28. Should I get a carrying case, do they scratch easy?


    For what? In this post you've asked about iMacs, Mac Pro's, Macbooks, Macbook Pro's, XServes and Mac Mini's? Throw us a bone here.

    29. How do I turn the iMac on?


    Pray to baby Jesus, he always turns my stuff on for me.
     
  5. Greenturtle macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    #5
    DjAmTraX what a fantastic reply! I'd agree with the user's answers.
     
  6. Doju thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #6
    I want an iMac AND a Macbook (for different occasions). I was curious what the others did. MacMini still confuses me, could someone go into more detail, sorry. How do I use a computer without a monitor, is it just like a massive portable flash drive?

    And if all I need to render AppleTV useless is a cable, why in gods name would I spend hundreds of dollars on an AppleTV?!

    What about battery life in mouse/keyboard?

    THANKS EVERYONE!! <3333
     
  7. duncyboy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #7
    You don't use a Mac Mini without a keyboard/mouse/display- it just doesn't come with those included.

    It's a cheap, small Apple computer where you provide your own peripherals (if you want)

    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=7FJcLSM5-Dg
     
  8. nick9191 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Britain
    #8
    A Mac Mini is just a computer. Thats all. You buy your own monitor, or use the monitor you already have. Thats it. Its exactly the same as the rest. Whilst it looks unbelievably small, it is a full blooded Macintosh. Shot in the dark here, but did you know the iMac has no tower, everything is behind the screen.

    XServe is a rackmount server, nothing you need worry about.
     

Share This Page