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Old July 15th, 2009, 10:30 PM   #16
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Hi Andrew,

We have to be careful not to turn this into another Mac vs Windows discussion which is where these threads always end up.

I think there are pros and cons to both and I'm happy with both my Macs and my PC's

I really think it's dependent on which platform your software of choice runs on. If it runs on both - flip a coin. I'm running XP on this system and it hasn't hung in - can't remember when. Certainly not in the last year or two.

My wife's Mac bigged down terribly once - turned out to be a problem with the newer version of Office sucking up all the memory. $40 of memory cured the problem.

Heck- a computer is a computer. I like OSX and dislike Windows, but I don't think the Mac GUI is all that wonderful.

Even so, for some reason I like the Mac OS better than Windows Go figure.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 10:39 PM   #17
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Sounds like you had some bitter times with the Windows side of the game and are voicing your opinion of Mac from that perspective. Regardless of what anyone says, Mac is a MUCH more expensive platform to own.
What perspective did you want me to have personal experience is the best teacher in my opinion. I used to run large computer labs, Mac and PC, for a large university. PC lab was much more costlier to maintain. Mac lab required fewer IT personnel, had fewer issues, and lasted longer. Bottom line Mac lab saved the university thousands compared to PC lab.

If you compare a Mac and a PC with same specs and having equal manufactures warranty, in many, if not most, cases the Mac is cheaper. Add the cost of anti virus software and yearly renewal fees and Mac is cheaper.

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Don't worry about the viruses and associated FUD. Mac computers get them too.
This is incorrect. Show me one virus in the wild for a Mac. The last virus in the wild for a Mac was in 2006 and was patched within days by Apple for a problem with iChat.

Ryan, if your budget is $1800 and you feel you have the knowledge and resources to do your own IT/warranty work go for the PC. Otherwise spend the money and have some peace of mind and worry about other things like getting more clients etc.

I entered into this discussion because PCers frequently misstate many of the facts about viruses, cost, etc. Discuss the merits of a platform/software without repeating old wives tales about Mac.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:01 PM   #18
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By the way - I should have added that the folks at the Apple store figured out that the problem was Office sucking up the memory.

If this had been Windows, I'd have been on my own. Apple support IS a plus - that's why my wife's machine is a Mac. She can drive a couple of miles down the street and make them miserable rather than making me miserable.

For my own machines, I got a MacBook Pro because I didn't want to get anywhere near Vista and I needed a new notebook. If I were in the market now, I'd probaby wait for Windows 7 which seems pretty good and get a Windows notebook.

If you've been using Windows and you're comfortable with solving the occasional problem yourself and just need a new machine, no reason to switch to Mac, particularly if you already have Windows versions of the software. I don't know that you'd see much performance difference. I've been using this machine about 4 years now and it's fine for anything I really need to do. If it weren't for single frame renders running for 3 days on it I wouldn't have even thought of a new workstation. But they do run for 3 days so I got a fast machine to run them on and there's no Mac version of the software so I got a PC.

It's as simple as that. But next machine might be a Mac - I'm completely insensitive to the brand name of the box, just what I can run on it.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:07 PM   #19
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Agree with Jeff on virus.. Mac's have very few viruses, same with linux. Don't agree that it's cheaper to maintain. Best anti-virus software is AVG, it's free and updated daily. No yearly cost to maintain. If you include the yearly OSX "update" cost I'd say the OS costs are about the same, although I will admit that OSX has brought more to the table in their combined years since OSX came out than Windows Vista (and soon Windows 7) did/will bring. I wish the OSX game market would gain momentum.

In terms of software, you'll pay more for Mac as there is a lot less of it to choose from. There is tons of free software for Windows that does just about everything the commercial stuff does, just gotta dig for it sometimes.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:27 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Ryan Thomas View Post
Thanks guys, I appreciate the feedback! I should be a little more specific, before this gets into a PC vs Mac debate.

I use Premiere and After Effects a lot, but software isn't really an issue; I can use Adobe products on a mac if I had too.

I am just tryin to figure out if I build a $1800 PC (quad core i7 2.6ghz, 6-12gb ram, etc), how that will compare to a $2500 quad core Mac with only 3gb of ram. Is a Mac THAT much more effecient, that it only needs a fraction of the ram? How will the two compare? I hope this helps. Thanks again.

Ryan
If I'm not mistaken, a $2500 quad core Mac Pro is built around an 2.66GHz Nehalem (i7), essentially the same as the PC you are considering building. Premiere should run about as well on either machine.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:27 PM   #21
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Cost of next Mac OS (10.6, Snow Leopard) is $29. So, how expensive is Windows 7 Ultimate going to be, free? It's tough to beat $29, common. Cost to purchase Leopard, $129, cost to purchase Vista Ultimate Business or XP Pro at Office Depot, $299.

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In terms of software, you'll pay more for Mac as there is a lot less of it to choose from. There is tons of free software for Windows that does just about everything the commercial stuff does, just gotta dig for it sometimes.
same is true for Mac, plenty of shareware and freeware, last time I looked several years ago, there was over 25,000 programs for OS X. Check out VersionTracker (a CNET company) and MacUpdate.

Adobe has what is called a cross platform upgrade that allows a PC user to switch their PC software for the Mac version for about $25, total cost. It covers the disks, manuals and shipping.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:37 PM   #22
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Jim,

VirtualBox was bought by Sun earlier this year. It runs on Windows, Mac, Solaris and Linux and runs all those as guests (except OSX). The 3.0 just came out last week or so, definitely worth a check. It's amazing a piece of software like this is free!

Jeff, to be fair, I would much rather run OSX than Windows if I could find a way to get used to the way things operate. I don't know why, I am not that old.. I just can't get used to OSX. In fairness.. you left something out about the price of OSX.. it gives you FIVE licenses! So yes, in that regard, OSX is a much better deal. I also find that each incarnation of Windows basically copies many features OSX brought a year or two prior. I do NOT like the installation system on OSX tho. It's very odd not to be able to uninstall applications. Having used an installation program for a product I wrote a couple years ago, it was much harder to get integration of our app into OSX than windows or linux. To uninstall in OSX you drag to the garbage can. However, unlike every other OS, it does not trigger any sort of uninstall notification, so thus we couldn't "clean up" our product when someone wanted to remove it. Things like that and the way menus work and the keyboard.. drives me nuts. I use the MS Natural for my big hands, can't use that tiny mac keyboard, and windows keyboards don't translate nicely to Mac with their big START button and all. ;)

Mind you, I am more a linux fan (Ubuntu is VERY nice and easy to use/install in minutes) than windows and Mac with the downside being all the good games, video and audio software is on windows and to a lesser degree Mac, so I am still stuck using one.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:40 PM   #23
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Robert, the Mac with 3GB ram won't run as smooth as a PC with 12GB ram. But.. OSX (and other *nix variants) are MUCH better at memory management in my opinion than Windows. You CAN run smoother in a 3GB OSX than you can in a 3GB Windows box. Vista gobbles up memory and swaps way too much to the HD. Little performance tweak you can do is change the swap drive to a 2nd physical HD on separate controller or better yet, a USB stick, and make use of a USB stick, although Windows Vista now allows you to use a USB drive as cache if it's fast enough.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 11:50 PM   #24
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The five licenses come in what's called a Family Pack and is $179 vs. the $129 I quoted. I'm not sure what the Family pack for 10.6 will cost, probably $69 or $79. You can use any keyboard you want on a Mac, many students preferred a PC keyboard and mouse. I use a PC trackball for all my editing. Again, best tool for the job, for me.

Most people love the fact that to uninstall a program you merely drag the app to the trash. The little bits and pieces left behind rarely amount to even a meg of space and typically are only several hundred KB. The hassle of uninstalling a program makes windows less user friendly for most people. However, companies like Adobe do make uninstallers for their software and it is a separate app that is installed when the Adobe app is installed. Look in any Adobe app folder and you'll find an uninstaller. Basically all it does is gather up the few remaining files and place them in the trash.
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Old July 16th, 2009, 12:20 AM   #25
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Jeff, yup.. that is what we did finally. It was more of a "if they click this, it will clean up.. if not.. oh well." But our app used a local small database that was also very small, but good to clean up upon uninstall. I agree..just dragging it to trash is great. I just think OSX should have included a programmatic notification when something is dropped to allow programs to uninstall without any extra uninstaller needed.
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Old July 16th, 2009, 08:59 AM   #26
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For me, the issue is performance - I'm able to afford more raw processing power and the video software for Windows is better able to take advantage of it. But I can provide my own support.

If your main issue is support, go with Apple.
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Old July 16th, 2009, 06:40 PM   #27
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Software and "long term" price not really an issue. I just want to make sure one won't be way faster than the other(in PP and AE, working with HDV or AVCHD). Thanks guys for the input!

Ryan
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