When buying, is a pc ever an option?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jtgotsjets, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. jtgotsjets macrumors 6502


    May 20, 2004
    Lawrence, KS
    [quick sidenote: I like how my iPod Touch knows all the models of apple computer and will autocorrect my capitalization, but doesn't know "pc."]

    I'm just curious if, when the time comes to buy a new computer, do PCs ever even figure into your buying decision? Do you even research PCs?

    I ask because I am looking into a new computer and it only just occurred to me that a PC was an option. I thought about it and quickly threw the idea out. I'm not entirely sure why- I use PCs at work and in school computer labs and don't hate the experience. In fact, I can't remember the last really bad experience I had with a PC (ok, so I witnessed no fewer than three of my friends' notebooks self-destruct within the last two years or so. They all switched.). Even so, I find myself without hesitation looking at a new mac to replace my iBook.

    This was not always the case. I got my iBook five years ago. To refresh your memory, iPods were just becoming the massive success we recognize today (era of the 3g iPod- or the original iPod touch, lol), but mac sales had not yet followed and were not exactly the super-hip items they are now.
    I knew I wanted a mac at the time as well, but it was not the same clear cut decision. I learned computers on a mac lcII and my elementary/middle schools had been mac-exclusive (and actually provided a mac to the family of every student), but my family switched to PC when I went to high school. As a result, I was mac-saavy but had never had a chance to use osx or any of the new hardware.
    As I graduated high school, everyone was getting new laptops to take to college. I ended up as the only one in my group of friends with a mac (which, as I said, I knew I wanted, by I had also considered other options at the time). If this decision had occurred this year- I feel like all of my friends would have gottenacbooks for college, no decision neccessary.

    What do you think?
  2. Big Boss Man macrumors regular

    Oct 27, 2006
    PCs are great if you like to build your own. I use a self built PC in addition to a MBP. I doubt I would buy a PC I did not build myself though.
  3. iBookG4user macrumors 604


    Jun 27, 2006
    Seattle, WA
    To answer your question, no, I do not consider PCs when I need to buy a new computer. I buy computers that will maximize my efficiency for the money spent, and since I am most efficient on a Mac, I buy a Mac.
  4. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603


    Apr 29, 2005
    San Francisco
    No. I never consider PC's when buying a new computer. Unless I was building a hackintosh (which I very well may do for my next machine).
  5. NoSmokingBandit macrumors 68000


    Apr 13, 2008
    I dont ever buy a pre-built pc. I always build my own. Its not difficult and it saves a ton of money. You can also tailor a pc for Hackintoshing which give you the absolute best of both worlds: cheap, diverse hardware and OS X
  6. srl7741 macrumors 68020


    Jan 19, 2008
    In my world

    I never consider a PC when buying a new computer. I look at what's new and available but that's it.
  7. statik13 macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2008
    Yes, but only if I was looking for a netbook or perhaps a HTPC. For a desktop system, not a chance.
  8. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    Yes, depending on what I am looking for in a new machine. I am considering a netbook for future portability but it will probably run as a hackintosh. Many people have purchased PCs as gaming rigs because they will be running Windows anyways and it allows them to customize.
  9. Macjames macrumors 6502a

    Dec 12, 2007
    Yorkshire, England
    for me personally a pc would never even enter into my head, but if i was advisors others then it would.
  10. Luis Ortega macrumors 6502a

    May 10, 2007
    Fetcham Surrey UK
    If you are going to buy one, I would recommend a Dell or else build one yourself.
    Dell offers many good deals in terms of components and price. Build your own is more expensive but it gives you total control.
    I spent many years building my own pcs. Now I have a mac pro and it's great, but I miss the opportunity to keep upgrading it as things evolve.
    In a way, it's more economical because I am forced to keep my computer for 4 or 5 years and then buy another one.
    With my pcs, I was always upgrading components and essentially getting newer one every year although it looked the same from the outside. My wife never had a clue what I was doing!
    If you do buy a Dell, the first thing to do is wipe it clean and reinstall your os yourself so that you can get rid of all of the unwanted software that they install on it.
  11. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    No longer logging into MR
    Actually, I own only PCs, since I do not find any extra value in Apple's OS or hardware for general use. That said, I do have an iPod 3G and an Apple TV.
  12. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Never factors into my decision. I'm not going to spend my time dealing with windows while I can be more productive on a Mac. 10 years ago it might have been a different story though.
  13. ziggyonice macrumors 68020


    Mar 12, 2006
    Rural America
    No, I never even consider PCs. I think miles01110 put it best:

    Part of the reason why your family probably switched from Mac to PC was because your school gave them OLD Macs! Anything before Mac OS X was pretty much the "dark days" at Apple, when the computers they made weren't that great. Once again, just as miles01110 put it: "10 years ago it might have been a different story though." Your family probably was using a Mac that was more than 10 years old! No wonder they switched to a PC!

    Currently, I'm a college student at one of the largest universities in the midwest. I work at a tech store on campus that also does computer repairs, and we service both Macs and PCs. The number of problems that PC users have is unbelievable. While Macs are still computers, and all computers have their share of problems, it's the fact that PCs run Windows -- and Windows is a terrible mess of an operating system. More and more students at my school have switched to Macs now than ever before. And even though a Mac sometimes look a little more expensive at first, it pays off over time. Seeing PC users at work everyday, we charge them $75 every time they need a virus removed, during which we erase their entire computer, and charge them an additional $40 if they want us to backup their files. That never happens with a Mac.

    There's no way I'd ever consider a PC. The problems are just to many to name.
  14. mcpryon2 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 12, 2008
    It depends what I want in the computer. I'm really considering the Studio XPS 16 right now because it's got a 1920x1080 16" RGBLED with an insane gamut, BD reader, and HDMI. The last two matter to me because I can use it as a BD player without having to move my PS3 from the projector room. Considering what I can do with the 16 I can't justify paying $1300 more for the 17" MBP.

    But, of course, if I want a machine for using Final Cut the choice is obvious. It really depends on a lot of variables, but I do consider a Windows machine.
  15. steve2112 macrumors 68040


    Feb 20, 2009
    East of Lyra, Northwest of Pegasus
    That's the way I feel. It really depends on what I want to do with the machine. Most of the time, I really can't justify the extra cost of the Mac. I bought both of my personal Macs used/refurbed, and I really don't see myself paying full price for it. To me, it's just another OS. I can use OSX, Windows, or Linux with equal ease. As for all the problems people have with Windows...I've never really had any, and if I did, I would fix them myself. I have never had one of my Windows machines get infected with any malware.

    As you pointed out, that Studio 16 is pretty sweet. It has specs as good as or better than the 17" MBP, and it even comes with the Bag of Hurt(tm). Good luck getting that on any Apple product.
  16. Azmordean macrumors 6502

    Mar 10, 2004
    Silicon Valley
    Yes. Honestly, if I ever find myself in a situation where I want a desktop, it'll be a PC. I'm not a fan of the iMac, as it uses almost all notebook parts, and in general I do not prefer all-in-ones. I frankly see the iMac as all the disadvantages of a notebook, with none of the portability. And the Mac Pro is so ludicrously overpowered and expensive for anything a home user would do that I won't consider it either. And the mini is flat too weak.

    So yeah, I'm one of the pro-sumers long left in the cold by Apple's current desktop lineup. I don't see that being remedied eiteher. So yes, if I wanted a desktop, I'd likely purchase a PC.

    That said, currently, my needs are well met by having a good laptop. That being the case, I purchased a MBP, as I prefer Macs, all else equal. Assuming I continue to want to stick with just a laptop, I'll stick with Apple as well.
  17. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    It depends on what your needs are. Apple simply doers not make a full range of hardware. They are lacking in three areas (1) mini-notebook (aka netbook), (2) Servers other then their entry-level "xserve" and (3) mainstream desktops.

    The PC I use for work, is an HP dual Xeon box with U320 SCSI disks that runs Linux. I needed a computer to run a small telephone switch and had to buy a micro-ATX sized PC and I'm running BSD Unix on that. Both are what you'd call a generic PC. But, no. I have no use at all for MS Windows. It does not do anything I need to do.
  18. MattZani macrumors 68030


    Apr 20, 2008
    For my main PC, an Apple Product is the way to go. And Most Likely a Laptop Until i get to Mac Pro area.

    As For a Gaming Machine, Self Built PC, Running XP is the Best Way to go. Pure Power and Satisfaction, in a Very Artistic (Yet not as beautiful as Apple's Offerings) Package.
  19. dsnort macrumors 68000


    Jan 28, 2006
    In persona non grata
    Just bought a PC on ebay, a refurbed eee PC. Running Linux!
  20. LeviG macrumors 65816

    Nov 6, 2006
    Norfolk, UK
    Yes very often as apple doesn't suit my requirements for a workstation graphics card. Due to my 3d app usage (on windows too) I want a decent gpu (quadro/firegl) which is no longer available on a mac pro and has never been available on a laptop. This is mainly on the desktop these days where for my needs the 'benefits' of os-x and mac are lost as the programs I use are only windows based anyways.

    I'll look into a mac for the graphics side of things and to allow for multiple platform testing of websites etc but considering safari is on windows now even this is becoming less important in my view.

    And before people moan about how inefficient windows is - well I'm just as fluid in windows as I am os-x and my windows machines are just as stable :)
  21. Reventon macrumors 6502

    Jan 31, 2009
    Toronto, ON
    No, not anymore. In the past 16 years I've used Windows based PCs, I've used every version of Windows from MS-DOS to 3.1 right up to Vista (including the god-awful ME). I've found each of these computers unreliable, never lasting more than 5 years or so before crapping out on me. After all the problems those computers gave me, I don't think I will ever switch back to PCs again. Even when I was doing research buying this Mac, I didn't even look or compare with any of the current PC desktops available.
  22. instaxgirl macrumors 65816


    Mar 11, 2009
    Edinburgh, UK
    I won't consider a pc.

    I bought a mac in the first place because I didn't like windows, and I still don't. And I don't think it likes me either - me and my boyfriend have a running joke about how his pc freaks out every time I try to do something on it. (and I don't try to do anything complicated on it that I would mess up because I'm a mac user. I'm talking about opening Office/Google Chrome etc and the whole computer freezes on me :( )

    Also battery life seems to be A LOT better on a mac, and me and my macbook owning friends seem to have less problems generally.
  23. thegilly macrumors member

    Mar 4, 2008
    Auckland, New Zealand
    A PC is an option. Microsoft Windows is not. Nor is paying for Windows knowing I'm not going to use it. Nor is buying from any store that swallows the Microsoft line and treats me like a pirate because I plan to supply my own operating system (a Linux of some flavour).

    Most sources of PCs here in New Zealand will not offer a discount if you don't want Windows, or will not even consider supplying a machine without Windows. So my choices for a PC are extremely limited, often expensive enough to be in the Mac price range, and usually fugly. A computer is a tool, yes, but looks do matter. My wheelchair is a tool also, and I wouldn't want it to be ugly, bulky, 3 pounds heavier than necessary, or Zune brown. A pencil is a tool, and I don't buy the ones decorated with weird cartoon characters. If I have to look at something every day, it shouldn't be an eyesore. (This is something I think a lot of the Mac naysayers don't get. Many of us appreciate Apple's design not because it impresses random strangers but because it is pleasing to our own eyes.) So, realistically, a PC is only an option if I can get it without Windows and without the Windows tax, it's dead cheap, and it's either a good-looking machine or I'm wanting it for some kind of use where it's not seen (headless file server sitting in a cupboard, maybe).
  24. Kardashian macrumors 68020


    Sep 4, 2005
    No. I use a Mac.

    To me, going shopping for a PC is like shopping for shoes* when I want sunglasses.

    *and womens shoes, at that.
  25. displaced macrumors 65816


    Jun 23, 2003
    Gravesend, United Kingdom
    Interesting one...

    For home use, no, not really. My current set-up's all Mac and I'd want any addition to fit in seamlessly. If I put media on a new machine, I want to be able to get to it via Front Row on my TV-connected Mini.

    I do have a PC in a loose sense: I've got a couple of VMware virtual machines running Windows on an external drive. One of them is for my own software development and the other is the copy of XP and all the apps which my work give me. I just carry that drive to and from work and fire up the appropriate virtual machine on either my company Dell or my own MacBook Pro.

    These days I only ever run Windows if I'm being paid to do so, or if I'm writing apps which one day I hope to publish myself. Windows for work, Mac for everything else. Mind you, that's already beginning to change – I use NetBeans on my Mac to do J2ME development for 'old-school' mobile phones and I'm getting my head around iPhone app writing at the moment too.

    The only advantage I can see to going PC is that I can build it myself... and to be honest, after many many years of doing that in the past, I'm pretty bored of that now. The end result's always the same, isn't it? Building a PC isn't actually creating anything. It's just sticking parts together in the same old way every time and it always results in just a blank desktop (whatever the OS) waiting for me to do something with it. I'd rather tinker with code and apps that do cool, useful things these days than messing with BIOS settings and optimising my RAS-to-CAS delays.

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