What to buy?...PC vs. Mac!

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by djtet, Apr 7, 2003.

  1. djtet macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2003
    Charleston, SC
    I'm looking for some advise/feedback concerning what to buy. Let me start by stating I would rather have a Mac. OK, here's my situation...

    I currently use my fiances old HP 500 mghtz Intel celeron, 192 mb ram, Windows 98, etc... AND, my old clamshell (tangerine) ibook, G3 - 333 mghtz, 192 mb ram, 6gb harddrive, OS 9, etc... I use both machines for graphic/web work...photoshop, illustrator, flash, dreamweaver! Both get the job done, but it's a slow, painful process.

    I want a powermac, but can't afford one...(I know, the same problem as everyone else!) With a wedding coming up, student loans, bills, etc. and the fact that my current (40 hour per week, crappy - non-design) job pays next to nothing, I just can't afford a powemac yet...(until I get a new job - and I'm looking; there's not a design market where I am now and will hopefully be moving!)

    So I was thinking of getting, sooner than later, a pc running 2 gig Pent. 4, at least 512 ddr ram, nice hard drive, decent graphic card, etc., for hopfully less than $1000? Then, once I get a new job, I'll wait until next year and get a (hopefully by then) PPC970 powemac! Does buying a cheaper PC for now, and then buying a Mac later, sound like a good idea or a waste of money???
  2. Rower_CPU Moderator emeritus


    Oct 5, 2001
    San Diego, CA
    If you need something immediately, by all means get the PC.

    I always say get the best computer you can afford, but since you might get a new job later, you can probably skimp a little on the specs and save some cash in the meantime.
  3. Vlade macrumors 6502a


    Feb 2, 2003
    Meadville, PA
  4. losfp macrumors regular

    Jul 16, 2002
    I guess it depends on how much you use each computer. I use both platforms quite a lot, so I don't mind having a reasonably up to date PC AND Mac. If you're going to use the PC now, but then ignore it when you buy a mac... might as well save up for the mac.
  5. pgwalsh macrumors 68000


    Jun 21, 2002
    New Zealand
    I use a PC and a 400mhz b/w power mac. I'm waiting for Apple to offer something more than what's in their lineup than what I have. What I've done in the meantime is update my b/w graphics card, put 1gb of ram in it and I just ordered the PowerLogix ZIF 800.

    I know this doesn't compare much to a 2 ghz computer but it's much better than what I had. My PC is an AMD 2100+ OC'd to 2700+... That works well, but I don't do much web work on it. I do all my web work with my mac GoLive etc.
    So, essentially you could upgrade you mac if you wanted to. That'll be less than a grand and may give you enough performance to last the 1 year period.
  6. djtet thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2003
    Charleston, SC
    As far as an emac...I really would like something that I can easily upgrade to. I like having open PCI slots and room for more ram...

    I would love to just upgrade my old ibook for the time being, but I've checked it out, and there's not much I can do it! No processor upgrades, no room for ram, no cheap enough external hard drives etc...

    I guess it all depends on how soon I can find a better paying job. I love designing and don't mind spending money to buy something up-to-date, IF I have the money for it. That's why a PC appears to be a much cheaper alternative.

    I use both of my current machines, but must admit, I find myself using the PC more nowadays (although dreaming it was a Mac!)
  7. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Apr 26, 2002
    Get the PC.
    If you have the apps (sounds like you do), a decent PC can be had for under a grand easy. The eMac is not upgradable as far as PC slots, but that's not necessarily bad as there are other ways.
    Please don't saddle yourself with more than you need just because you want a Mac. A wedding??!! THAT'S what's important, not a computer. It's not fair to your new wife either.
    Actually, why buy anything? You gear can get the job done, and you'll have a few hundred to pay your loans. By the way, know how much a freaking reception costs? Mine was $10,000. Save your money dude.
  8. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    If you're only looking for a PC as a temp computer, you may as well get an even crappier computer than a P4 2GHz Windows PC with 512DDR Ram for $1000. Just get a piece of s*** computer for now. Why the rush? You have used your slow machines up until now, right? I'm sure there are ways to purchase a computer for $700 that are much faster than either of your two current computers. Just think of it as a temporary thing you need to put up with temporarily. I'm sure it will be very usable, and more than adequate if you have managed to use a Celeron 500GHz computer up until now. There's very little long-term loss for you this way.

    Either that, or get a refurbished Mac. Some places are selling the old 600 or 700GHz iBook with CDRW/DVD (or not) for under $800. But make sure it comes with some Applecare remaining. :)
  9. cb911 macrumors 601


    Mar 12, 2002
    BrisVegas, Australia
    i would say go for the PC now, hold onto that for a while and then hopefully when the time comes to get a Mac the 970 will be out and you'll be able to afford it.

    and let us know when you've made the decision, it'll be interesting to know.:)
  10. coolsoldier macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2003
    The 909
    If you have a 500GHz PC, by all means, don't get a new computer for another, say, 10 years:)

    Seriously, though, if it's just a temporary thing, get the cheapest computer you can find. Refurbished or not, that WILL be a PC.

    Just make sure you don't get stuck with Lindows .
  11. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Re: What to buy?...PC vs. Mac!

    You have a machine that seems to be working. There is no question here. You cannot afford what you want, so you are considering buying a computer that you don't want. What sense does that make? If you don't want something, it is too expensive--irrespective of the price. Save the money you are considering wasting on that Windows machine until you can buy what you really want. The money you save buy not buying two computers will pay for one much nicer one.
  12. djtet thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2003
    Charleston, SC
    Thanks for all your help...

    I really appreciate everyone's input...I guess with getting a PC for now, I really am just looking for a temporary solution to a not-so-big problem (it's not like I don't have any computer or have one that doesn't work - they're just both slow) It does seem logical to save those extra dollars that I would be spending on a PC now, and save that money to put towards a Powermac (which is what I really WANT). Hopefully by the time I get enough money saved up (and hopefully by then a new job!) I can buy the PPC970 (of course if the rumors are true and the 970's do actually come out by next year!!!)

    For now I think I'll wait a little bit for a Powermac, but I'll keep everyone updated if anything changes...
  13. Coca-Cola macrumors 6502

    Dec 10, 2002
    Optimal solution-
    Take the money you were planning on spending on the PC and buy apple stock on www.sharebuilder.com. Wait until the stock price goes up after the 970 is announced and sell the stock and buy a new mac. Oh sure it is a little risky but APPL is trading for a bargain price right now if you ask me.
  14. MacAztec macrumors 68040


    Oct 28, 2001
    San Luis Obispo, CA

    Build a PC. I just built one for about 800 dollars with the following specs:

    P4 2.66GHz (533FSB)- 220$
    Gigabyte AGP 8x Mobo w/USB 2.0, Firewire, etc.- 101$
    Radeon 9500 Pro (128MB DDR)- 185$
    512MB DDR 400 RAM- 85$
    I didnt need a HD, but a nice 80GB one would be- 85$
    LiteOn CDRW- 52$
    RaidMax Case w/400w PS- 80$
    -85$ if you dont need a hardrive

    No need for an OS if you already have one, or just pirate XP (Pro Corporate Edition).
  15. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    And like I said before, you may as well just get a crappier computer than what you wanted if its really only temporary. The configuration that MacAztec just posted sounds great, but I think you can get even cheaper parts than that. Just get a 2-2.2GHz AMD processor, keep the DDR Ram, get a Geforce2/4 with 64/128MB Ram videocard for $50 (I actually paid $60 Canadian for a 64MB Geforce 2, or around $40 American). I'm sure at this point in time, you can get an even better card for cheap.

    Damn it, I hate when I post in GHz instead of MHz. :D Apple and their stupid chips that aren't fast enough to be quoted in GHz. :p
  16. djtet thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2003
    Charleston, SC
    Building a PC...

    The only problem I have with buying parts and building my own PC would be the fact that last time I tried that (which was years, and years ago), I ended up spending more than I wanted...then there was the whole compatibility issues. This graphics card doesn't work properly with that motherboard, and that ram won't work, etc...system crashes would follow. However, now that I'm better educated I might do a better job this time around!!! If I do, in the near future, decide to take that route and build a PC, does anyone know where to look for good, cheap hardware???

    Also, does anyone know where the best place is to look for refurbished Macs???

    Once again, thanks for all of your replies!
  17. yzedf macrumors 65816


    Nov 1, 2002
    Dude, you're getting a Dell

    Which, seriously speaking, is fine. Use your existing monitor and other stuff, and just buy a new box. You can start at about $558 for a Celeron 1.8GHz system, and add $200 for more memory, bigger hard drive etc.

    Another problem with buying an eMac, is your paying for stuff you don't need (monitor mainly).

    For build your own: www.pricewatch.com

    A good place to buy from, that has GREAT service: www.newegg.com
  18. acj macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2003
    Re: Building a PC...

    Don't buy from the cheapest place. Buy from somewhere with decent customer service. I like mwave.com. Newegg.com is also good. Also, not only are you more educated but computers are easier to build now as far as compatibility problems. You may want to spend a bit extra for name brand ram, that can always help things. Since it'll be easy to build a computer for under $1000, you might consider an LG combo drive, since it's only a few bucks more than a burner only. It's hard to complain about 48X cd burning and DVD reading for only $69!
  19. Riko19 macrumors member

    Mar 5, 2003
    Warrington UK
    hi im a technician in the united kingdom for PC computers, for what you really need right now there is not too much difference between celeron and pentium 4 stick with celeron for now and move up to mac, i have been working with pc for too long about 14 years now and getting bored because know so much on them now i think mac are more relaible, but stcik with a celeron, cheap relaible and updateable, i recon you should build from scratch due to some places you get custom built ones let you trade in parts if you bought them off that company give them a price to work with and what you need it for and say you want a celeron chip.

    Hope this helps you on your way.

    Riko :)

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