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How long does a Mac usually last?

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Xtreme $niper    51

I don't understand people. Mac hardware still works 5 years later. Yes. Its amazing it doesn't explode after a certain time limit. Mac hardware must be special...

Chill. People are just replying to the OP. I doubt most of them are even seeing your comments before they reply. If you don't think the conversation is worth your while, then why do you keep coming back to say the same thing?

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Malisk    142

I have a question for all you Mac fanatics out there, and that is how long do you usually keep your Mac (hardware) before upgrading to a newer model?

In the "PC" world, I have found myself upgrading hardware every 6 months to 1 year, however I am not certain of how such an upgrade cycle works when it comes to the Apple platform due to different system requirements by software applications and such.

The specifications to my Mac are in my forum signature. Also, here is some background particulars as to what I do with my Mac:

  1. Listen to music (iTunes library, radio streams, etc.)
  2. Watch videos (DVDs, on-line streams)
  3. Photo editing with iPhoto '08 (considering purchasing Aperture 2 for my computer in the weeks ahead)
  4. Image editing (currently using Pixelmator 1.2, which I feel is a great piece of software for the price)
  5. Recording and editing audio using GarageBand (this also includes podcasts)
  6. Browsing the internet (using Safari 3.1.1 currently)
  7. Instant Messaging (I use Adium 1.2.5, which seems to be a fairly solid release and includes all of the features that I need in a client)
  8. Managing contacts, appointments, and e-mail (as you guessed it, Address Book, iCal, and Mail are working away perfectly for these tasks)
  9. Programming (currently learning the UNIX terminal and all of the associated commands, I use TextWrangler for any shell scripts, etc. that I have created)

I would really like to know how long my MacBook Pro will last me for these tasks and for handling upcoming software releases.

Thank you everyone in advance for taking the time to read this thread (and hopefully, reply!) and I hope you all have a great day ahead. :)

I'm on a late 2008 MacBook Pro, so on year 3 here, and I'm experiencing absolutely no special difference in usability/performance compared to when I bought it, and is using Aperture 3 as my "heaviest" software (see my edit though). It's much more taxing than both iPhoto 08 and Pixelmator of yours, which I also have installed. Other than that, I can only see GarageBand as reasonably "big" for your system, and perhaps Xcode if you want to take programming specifically for the Mac even further, but those aren't super heavy though. I think you'll easily get at least two more years out of your system, if it's currently handling those well.

Of course, this depends *a lot* on how much taxing OS X Lion will be on our systems, but if it's not, that's when things get easy. :) Or if you aren't planning to upgrade OS X.

I have, with my 2008 Mac, high hopes of being able to run Lion OK. I'm an optimist. ;)

Edit: I should perhaps say that I did upgrade my RAM from 2 GB to 4 GB though. That made a big difference on Aperture 3, which is basically the only heavy program I use. Going from 2 GB to 4 GB may have given my system 1-2 years more of being frustration free. :)

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Skyfrog    787

I'm still using my Powerbook 1400c with Mac OS 9. It was made in 1996. :laugh:

Of course I don't use it to go online (even though it can). At this point it's mostly just a glorified ebook reader and word processor, and a few old games now and then. Anyway Mac's last a very long time depending on what you need them for.

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AJerman    761

Macs last until you're done with them. I'm still using my early 2008 Macbook daily. It runs 24/7 hooked up to a 37" screen because I broke the screen and haven't replaced it yet. Still good as new.

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Shadrack    601

Just to throw another data point in the mix I was using a DELL 2002 laptop (Inspiron 8600) at work until just a few months ago. Got upgraded to a ThinkPad and I expect it to last at least 3-4 years if not more. I'd consider myself an "Apple Fanboy" and thats based on my enjoyment of using Apple's products. But there is good PC hardware out there that will last you years. It really comes down to your need for speed and avoiding cheep hardware.

I think "business class" hardware tends to last better. Price wise it is about the same as Apple, however.

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vf-    40

I'm into my 6th year with a Power Mac G5 Dual 2.7. I bumped 8GB of memory into it sometime in 2006, even though it only takes DDR400. Though I did have to replace the PRAM battery, last March the clock started resetting to January 1970. To this day it's still lovely and snappy? ?_?

It plays 1080p clips/whatever and such silky smooth on a 30" ACD. Pity I'm stuck on Leopard 10.5.8 and CS4 for design. Still on the original install November 2007.

Still looks new to this day as I never allow it to build up with dust so everything stays cool and quiet.

G5 Dual 2.7 came with Tiger bought May 2005.

Crucial 8GB PC3200

NVIDIA 6800 DDL Ultra

Pioneer DVR-A18L 22x DVD?RW with Labelflash

2x Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB SATA-II 32MB

Samsung SpinPoint HD501LJ 500GB

Belkin Bluetooth with Apple aluminium keyboard and Logitech MX1000 + steermouse

I'd love to get Wireless N without the gigantic external aerials thats not at silly prices but the stock AirPort Extreme G is doing it fine for what I need. Though there's a EDiMAX EW-7728In in the PC thats not getting used I could pinch.

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DeadEndAccount    508
Just to throw another data point in the mix I was using a DELL 2002 laptop (Inspiron 8600) at work until just a few months ago. Got upgraded to a ThinkPad and I expect it to last at least 3-4 years if not more. I'd consider myself an "Apple Fanboy" and thats based on my enjoyment of using Apple's products. But there is good PC hardware out there that will last you years. It really comes down to your need for speed and avoiding cheep hardware.

I think "business class" hardware tends to last better. Price wise it is about the same as Apple, however.

There is a temptation I guess by some to get the hardware with the top of the line specifications even if the over all quality is horrible. It's like Lenovo Thinkpad versus Dell, sure the Dell has higher specifications but you're probably better off getting the Lenovo for the sake of build quality.

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