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Need Advice: Which Mac to buy?

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EmuBite    0

Hey Gang.

Got a question that maybe some of you could help me out with. My wife and I are considering leaving the world of PCs and jumping into the world of Macs. I've been reading a book on OS X and am very impressed with the OS as a whole. (Note: I'm planning on doing amateur video editing, word processing, web browsing, and perhaps the occasional game, although I am by no means a gamer. Oh, and I love the fact that BSD is the OS X kernel...) As many of you know, Macs tend to be A LOT more expensive than PCs, which therein lies the problem.

Here's my general question: Do MHz/GHz really matter that much in a Mac environment? Coming from the PC world, I know that MHz/GHz do matter. However, I hear from Mac users that a Pentium IV 2.4GHz cannot reliably be compared to a Motorola G4 933Mhz. I guess I have some sort of psychological reaction to putting up $2,200 for a computer that is only 133Mhz faster than my current Pentium III 800Mhz. Comments?

Okay, with that question out of the way, here's my second question: If I DO decide to get a Mac, should I go with the new iMac 800Mhz or spring for a PowerMac G4 933MHz tower? I'm not sure expandability will really be an issue for me, as everything that I have "expanded" in my current computer is already present in the iMac and G4 tower. However, I have heard that the graphics card in the iMac is not that great, and the iMac only has a 100Mhz FSB and a smaller cache. As I may want to play the occasional game, this may cause a problem if I go with the iMac. However, the iMac is quite a bit cheaper if you include the fact that it comes with its own monitor.

Another thing to throw in the mix is that I have a 19" Dell P991 monitor that I hear displays OS X wonderfully. The iMac only has a 15" LCD screen, which although is probably better overall quality, has substantially smaller viewing real estate. As my eyesite isn't the greatest (I just graduated law school and have read in the past three years about a zillion pages), I think the tower may have the advantage here.

So, to sum up: iMac vs. PowerMac?

Information overload -- I'll shut-up now. Any comments or suggestions are welcome. Thanks in advance.

Cheers,

RW

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MxxCon    0

why would you buy something more expensive that does exactly same thing?:ponder:

unless you have too much money(most lawers do;)) you don't need....

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Vlad    12

Buying a mac is like flushing money down the drain. Stick with PC's. They're cheaper and do the exact same thing Macs do (as MxxCon said).

If you're so excited about the BSD kernel, maybe you should actually try FreeBSD or OpenBSD.

Sheesh with 2200 dollars I could throw together an awesome PC with dual Athlon XP's (yes, I said XP's), and plenty of memory to satisfy hungry video editing software.

Then there's always the fact that most games are either released only for PC's, or first for PC's. Seems like enough reason to evade the Macintosh bullet to me...

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Chad    0

Ok did you two read the question? First I wouldn't really post this at neowin...even in the mac section. Too many no nothing pc users. go to the macnn.com board.

Well...I used to use pcs...about 3 months ago. bought my first mac...dual 800. Love it. Wish i would have gotten one sooner. What I've found is pc users tend to know nothing about macs...thus the "pcs are cheaper and faster" line always comes up. If you really do any kind of research...you'd know neither is true. The Mac, even though the ticket price is higher, the price is cheaper in the long run because: 1)you'd save time and money since you wouldn't have to format and fix the mac all the time like you do pcs b) pcs go out of date sooner (in a study done by Byte magazine) so you'd be spending money upgrading it, etc. As of right now, OSX isn't going anywhere. If you buy a G4 today (especially a tower) its gonna last for a few years and still do everything. Whereas a pc you buy today will be out of date in 2 years or less. So therein lies how Macs are cheaper in the long run. As far as megahertz/gig, take the Macs mhtz and double it...thats roughly the pc equivalent. so a 933 G4 would be about the same as the 1600-1800 mhtz pc (amd or p4). But it is hard to compare mhtz to mhtz crossplatform. Megaflops would be a better approach to comparing. And of course OS X is better than any windows.

I personally prefer the G4 towers mainly because of expandability. And since you already have a 19" monitor, thats another reason. And of course the video card will be better in the tower, and is upgradable later.

But you'd get more answers at macnn.com, at apple's own discussion forum, or at macosx.com

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MxxCon    0

yes, i know nothing about macs other than using imac once and reading some stuff online.

but yet i don't see how mac that cost $2k+ is cheaper than top of the line pc that cost $900 and which will last me ~2 years+another upgrade in 2more years for ~$400? in 4 years i'll end up with faster system for less money. i don't see how macs can be cheaper in the long run. unless you mean buy it once and keep using for the next 10years.

and still i ask same question, what can you do on mac that you can't on pc?

but i digress, seems like indeed tower would allow you more room for expanstion(which you don't need with macs anyway?:roll: ).

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Deckhand    0

*Deckhand runs for the hills to take cover!!!

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Vlad    12

Yeah, that's it. I don't know anything about macs, but I work as a system administrator in a company that has over two dozens macs.

1) A good PC user doesn't format his computer whenever something goes wrong. The user FIXES IT.

2) Just because something is out of date DOESN'T MAKE IT OBSOLETE. You don't need an athlon xp 2000+ to run microsoft word now - old pentium 3 500's work just fine.

3) You can't just double a PC's speed and arrive at the "mac equivalent". Both systems are based on different architectures and are better at different things. As for upgrading anything, I haven't upgraded my computer in about 20 months, and most things still run well enough or me to continue playing them.

I would never use OS X - if I wanted a half ass operating system I would use OS/2. If I wanted the real thing I would run linux. Do you not like the "cheaper and faster" argument because it's true or because everyone uses it? It's great that you talk about how macs "don't need upgrades" then go into "expandability and new video cards" at the end of your post, superfula. (is that superfula as in superfula****?)

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Wickedkitten    11
Originally posted by bizcobird

Hey Gang.

Here's my general question: Do MHz/GHz really matter that much in a Mac environment? Coming from the PC world, I know that MHz/GHz do matter. However, I hear from Mac users that a Pentium IV 2.4GHz cannot reliably be compared to a Motorola G4 933Mhz. I guess I have some sort of psychological reaction to putting up $2,200 for a computer that is only 133Mhz faster than my current Pentium III 800Mhz. Comments?

Mhz in fact don't matter when you're on a mac. I'm using a 450mhz Cube at the moment and I can run things fine. Word Processing, Game Playing, Music you name it. The only slowdown that you will get on a mac is based on the amount of ram that you have. Seeing as how they don't sell 450mhz g4's anymore you should be fine with even a 800mhz Mac just make sure you have over 384 of ram.

Okay, with that question out of the way, here's my second question: If I DO decide to get a Mac, should I go with the new iMac 800Mhz or spring for a PowerMac G4 933MHz tower? I'm not sure expandability will really be an issue for me, as everything that I have "expanded" in my current computer is already present in the iMac and G4 tower. However, I have heard that the graphics card in the iMac is not that great, and the iMac only has a 100Mhz FSB and a smaller cache. As I may want to play the occasional game, this may cause a problem if I go with the iMac. However, the iMac is quite a bit cheaper if you include the fact that it comes with its own monitor.

First rule of Mac shopping is don't buy from an Apple store cos you ca guarantee that you are going to be paying in between 10-20% markup just cos it's from Apple. Because of the fact that you already have a 19 inch monitor I would go with the tower.

Word of Advice though, smalldog.com has a load of macs that are cheaper than the ones you can get from the apple store plus you can normally get a rebate on them as well. Right now there they have a PowerMac G4/800 256/40/CDRW/Radeon 7500 Dual/56k for 1349.

If you are going to get a tower though it's not necessary to get one with really high specs at all so go for the lowest amount of ram and hd that you can since you can easily toss in a higher capacity hard drive and some pc-133 ram if you have some laying around. As for drives just get a firewire external.

Hope this helps a bit

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Timan    554
Originally posted by Vlad

1) A good PC user doesn't format his computer whenever something goes wrong. The user FIXES IT.

thats not true at all other wise dell wouldnt sell so many protection plans lol

Thanks Wicked Kitten on that one ;)

Think about it yall. If he wants a mac he wants a mac don't go yaking yo him about getting a pc. Somepeople find macs faster slower cheaper more money you name it. same with pc's.

I say get a tower too. get the lowest end one on that site kitten gave you. looks good and will LAST YOU LONGER than a pc would, seeing how you would have to update a pc every week just to stay on top ;) *thats not a flame just my 2cents*

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configure    1

Please stick to the topic and keep it cool.

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DisinfectedDuck    0
Originally posted by superfula

1)you'd save time and money since you wouldn't have to format and fix the mac all the time like you do pcs b) pcs go out of date sooner (in a study done by Byte magazine) so you'd be spending money upgrading it, etc. As of right now, OSX isn't going anywhere. If you buy a G4 today (especially a tower) its gonna last for a few years and still do everything. Whereas a pc you buy today will be out of date in 2 years or less. So therein lies how Macs are cheaper in the long run.

And you say PC users don't know anything about Macs?? funny.

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AyA316    0

Macs suck, they have no future, only pc's and microsoft do. And thats all i got to say about that. :mad:

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Dazzla    5
Originally posted by configure

Please stick to the topic and keep it cool.

AyA316, what the hell are you even doing on this thread. Just grow up or get lost. Is it so hard to ask for advice without some stupid fanboy teenager on the forums spouting ****.

You have sontributed absolutely nothing to this thread and have simply proceeded to bring the quality of it down.

I dare not look at your other posts for the fear of them being the same.

For people reading this thinking about posting, don't add to the flamebait. This is not a Mac VC PC thread and we don't need fanboys. Get Kitten, deadzombie etc on here, and the rest who have something to say along the lines of what AyA316 said don't waste your time hitting the post reply button.

Now, onto the question in hand. First of all, the fact that it has a glimmer of BSD in OS X is largely irrelevant.

As for performance of the iMac, it is good. Admittedly you could get a PC for a similar price which will more then likely be faster in certain apps, especially gaming.

I've personally got the iMac 700 combo and I can tell you that the gaming performance is quite good. You can play Return to Castle Wolfenstein with all the setting's maxed out and at max res (unfortunately 1024) at well over 60fps (And please, no fanboy, PC gamers respond saying that 200fps is the min, it's not).

Video Editing also is very quick and easy, I've used a Digital camcorder and iMovie is extremely good, there is no delay in editing video because iMovie is heavily optimised for the G4 processor. The ease of use is also something that the PC cannot compare to. I tried the equivelant of plugging the camcorder into my VAIO laptop and there was simply no contest.

And from the mouth's of Microsoft themselves, Office v.X is better then Office XP.

Like kitten said, you can get good deals on Towers if you hunt around.

One more thing, I would suggest trying a mac out thoroughly, Apple staff/resellers are usually very friendly and more then willing to demonstrate/let you have a play.

And please, not more fanboy-ism, good responses only.

I hope this has helped.

Dazzla

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configure    1

Thanks Dazzla :)

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butterific    0

Well minus all the Mac flames, this has been quite informative.

I'm getting ready to dive back into the Mac scene [grew up with them], but since I'll be heading back to school come fall, and my school works on G4 Cube's, I'm looking at purchasing one of mine at home, so I can do more work at home, and less work at school [like I really want to spend more time there than I have to :p]. But it came down between the new iMac, which I heard was pretty slick, or the G4 tower. Though I've always leaned more towards the tower just because I can get in there and add things. [one can never have enough storage].

My question in all of this however, if I should go all out with the processors, or if a 933 will be suitable. I'm really leaning towards the dual 800's, even though I love the dual 1gig's, it doesn't much like my bank account.

What would you guys suggest?

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freeza    11

tower tower

damn macs are sleek looking

grew up with them all throughout elementary school

i would love to get one myself but i dont have the money

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Dazzla    5

If you can afford it, go for the tower. It all depends on what you are going to use it for. I bought the iMac cause all i do that pushes a PC in any way is play around with photoshop. Don't get me wrong though, it's no slouch, but if you can afford a tower then I would go for it.

Also, looking at the Apple store, they don't actually stock dual 800's any more, which is probably a good thing because you'll probably find a bargain. You might be able to get a tower for the same price as the imac in which case there is no contest.

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butterific    0

I think I might just have to stop in at my local Mac dealer and see what sort of deals I can rustle up. Those dual 800's would be so nyce.

I'm using the machine for a lot of graphic and video editing and that, so the dual 800's would really make it fly.

Macs are sexy.

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nosnhojm    0

get an XServe :-)

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butterific    0

Mmm... how I'd love one of those. However its price doesn't much love me.

[starts the "buy butter a xserve fund"]

Yes, that'd do nicely.

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EmuBite    0

butterific,

I had the same question as you and asked it on the Ars Technica Macintoshian Achaia forum. Follow the thread here.

In a nutshell, I was told to go with the 933Mhz G4 Tower.

Hope this helps.

RW

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atomoverride    0

mac = evil

pc = good.

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Timan    554

bizcobird let me ask you this how much $$$ you willing to spend on this. *should be cheaper since you have the monitor.

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Dazzla    5
Originally posted by atomoverride

mac = evil

pc = good.

OH MY GOD, WHAT THE HELL IS THE POINT.

WHY DO YOU EVEN POST ON THESE THREADS IF THAT'S THE SORT OF POST YOU COME UP WITH, EITHER GROW UP OR DON'T POST.

Take a look at the updated community rules as well if you're unsure.

No Spam: Advertising, useless and OT posts, raising post count will be deleted

Pay attention to that word useless.

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