why macs better than pc? (discussion on low level integration, IC's,drivers etc)

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by jayo123456, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. jayo123456 macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2010
    OSX is a big part, but aside from that.

    I know they both use the same basic parts (HD, memory, cpu etc). But aside from that too, surely there must be something else going on in there that makes them run so much better.

    All the IC's, diodes, transistors, etc, surely Apple must be somehow integrated these parts really well together. The drivers, the bus', custom mobo, I'm looking for someone knowledgeable in the very low level of it for an answer.

    I'm in comp Engineer, sophomore.....we've touched on this stuff, but the big picture isn't really clear to me yet.
  2. Moomba macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2008
    Charlotte, NC
    One of the singular biggest reasons is very simple. Apple only has to create drivers for a small segment of hardware. People complain about Apple saying they are monsters controlling every aspect of their creations. However, by having control over all aspects/variables you can build custom systems (both hardware and software) that are able to utilize them to a greater potential.

    A company like Microsoft has to deal with varying quality of components and even greater variance in driver quality. Literally, they are dealing with thousands upon thousands upon thousands of combinations. Plus, Microsoft also maintains legacy hardware support for practically ever.

    Apple only has a few hundred permutations by comparison to deal with, and they aren't afraid to yank the carpet out from under customers when dealing with legacy hardware.

    This is the core of the perceived quality disparity between the companies. Microsoft is plenty capable of creating a quality OS, but their job is much much harder than Apples.

    AlsoApple doesn't just slap the cheapest components into a chassis and call it an iMac. There is a lot of testing in terms of how the hardware behaves. One must always remember that not all hardware is created equal. This isn't saying that no corners are cut in designing the systems, but rather the corners that are cut are calculated. In the end the emphasis is on quality and stability of components.
  3. MacVibe macrumors regular

    Dec 21, 2009
    "run so much better"?

    If you spend $700 on a desktop computer you could have debates all day long about whether a $700 mac runs better than a $700 windows 7 pc. The Mac looks cooler, but has less memory and a less powerful cpu than the pc.

    Apple used to have an "it just works" ad campaign. In terms of absolutes, that sure isn't my experience with the mac- both hardware and software problems. However, on a sliding scale, in my experience the mac with os x does "just work" more often than a windows computer "just works".

    I chalk this up to Apple being in control of the hardware and the software. Microsoft is in a much different position of being expected to solve integration problems for two-three orders of magnitude more hardware components. As much as I'd like OS X available on a high performance, low cost hardware setup ($700 i5, 8 GB ram) I don't want all of the headaches associated with getting a hackintosh to work and then have it break with every OS update. Microsoft deals with these headaches as part of their business strategy, Apple washes their hands if it isn't their hardware.

    As far as being an engineering student looking at specific components- that would really have to be ad hoc. There are plenty of examples of Apple hardware problems, 27" screens, MBP gpus, ibook mobos, etc. Apple seems to get through all of these with a fairly undamaged reputation due to their stellar (by comparison) customer service. ICs, diodes, transistors, etc.- these are all commodity parts and Apple buys from the same vendors other OEMs do. Modern motherboards are much simpler than their predecessors as more and more functions move into the cpu and accompanying chipset. Apple doesn't need to build a USB3 chipset, or buy one from an external vendor, as long as Intel just includes with their chipset.

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