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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

Convince me: Why get an iBook over any other WinTel Laptop?


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J-Money
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Hey guys, just a bit of background information first: I'm planning on getting a laptop for when I start university next semester, and I remember reading in a information pamphlet on my program (Education at the University Of McGill, Montreal) that the Education department uses (or maybe used) Macs, but I really don't know what for.

Anyways, I've been working on OSX for the past 2 years in my college program (cinema/communications), and I'm quite comfortable with OSX. I've used it pretty much only for Final Cut Pro and photoshop, and I pretty much know how the OS fuctions.

Now, if I get an iBook, this would be my first Mac purchase. I'm still not 100% comfortable with it since I use Windows all the time at home. One of my reasons for not getting a Mac is not being able to play Counter-Strike, and I was hoping I would be able to play CS: Source once I get a Laptop. That's the only game I play, and I'm hoping I can find a replacement and not having to go back to this old PC. But then again, I shouldn't be playing games, because I really need to focus on school.

Anyways, I keep changing my mind on whether or not I want to get an iBook. The upsides of me getting it is that it's light & portable, it's sturdy and durable (will last me my 4 years of university *hopefully*), and the 5 hour battery life I've read from numerous reviews. But those same reviews say "It's a good compliment to your Windows Desktop." I want to get a laptop that will replace my desktop. I think to myself, "What if this is just a phase, and after my first few months with the iBook, I'll just regret getting the apple?"

That's where you guys step in. I've posted questions on other message boards on Windows/Apple laptops, and I don't get much other than "Mac sucks" and responses like that. I know you guys *might* be a bit biased, but I also know that you have more knowledge on Macs. So what I'm asking for is just some supporting arguments, so I don't have to feel so uneasy about making my decision. hahahha.

Thanks!
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mmoy

 
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How about the equiv of a Mac Mini PC to replace the desktop (use and AMD K8) with an iBook? I use a Windows
laptop as my main machine and have a backup Windows laptop. We also have a PowerMac G5 for the household desktop which I prefer using but have a lot more of my real applications on my K8 notebook.
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BigBear

 
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well, i'm a recent switcher myself. i was more than willing to take the plunge and have been looking at macs for a while now. i've had my ibook for about a month and i can honestly say that i have no regrets! i love my ibook. while you are correct in that you won't be doing much gaming on your ibook, for all other intensive purposes you really can't beat it. the mac os is an absolute pleasure to use. i've used my ibook as my desktop replacement and while i can't really play the latest greatest games lets face it, thats why there is ps2/xbox etc... the portabililty factor of the ibook is another plus, i find myself taking it everywhere.

hope this helps a little.


my apple is bling *tisk tisk, you shouldn't have any bling.. just nice things*
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Kokopelli
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Hmm... Macs suck. So do Wintel boxes. Macs just suck in a different way. Bear with me.... There is no silver bullet. No computer or OS out there today is perfect for every user. Each has their advantages and disadvantages. Oh crap, this is going to be a long, rambling post. I can feel it.

Ok first off I will touch briefly on comparitive value.

You can get a slightly faster Wintel laptop for the same cost as the iBook. Fact of life, some will disagree with me but I am prepared to defend it. Now the operative question is for email, text editing, browsing, etc... With the exception of gaming, how big a difference will it make? Nothing, nada, nitch, squat. Well it will make some difference but it is more a question of perception than productivity. The utility of the OS makes a much more significant difference, but that varies by user. I think, for the money, iBooks are better constructed though.

Software... There is less of it for Macs. Is there a piece of Wintel Software that you can not live without? If so, then the iBook is not you thing. Counterpoint: Do you want to be able to work in Final Cut Pro on your laptop? Guess what, you are not doing that on Wintel. What software do you need. MS Office (which I despise) is available for both platforms, as is Photoshop.

Onto the OS itself. OS X is not Windows. This may seem obvious but I find much of the dislike some have with OS X is that they seem to expect OS X to be Windows. It is not. There are a plethora of differences, more than I want to write, or even care, about. http://www.xvsxp.com/ is a fairly impartial comparison of the two. If you have a surplus of time you can see how they copmpare on different tasks. But you say you have familiarity with the OS, so you should have at least some idea whether you like the way it operates for you. Me? I love it. (With the addition of QuickSilver. Without QS I would be back on Slackware for my primary laptop.) Configuration is fairly straight forward. OS X has a *nix core. As of this moment OS X is virus and spyware free, something Windows can not claim.... Let me youch on that a bit more. Virii are a fact of life on Windows. With proper precautions and safe practices they can be avoided, but it is a matter of maintaining a vigil. OS X is free of this onus and I for one am glad.

I find OS X to be a more "comfortable" OS than XP to operate in. The hard part here is that the differences are a matter of perception, which gets into a touchy feely intuitive argument that I would just as soon avoid. XP is a little more responsive, but not in any way that makes a signiciant difference to productivity. Application install is about as simple as it gets in OS X. The majority of the time it is drag and drop. Removing the app is (usually) just a matter of dragging it to the trash. (Side Note: I would like some way to automatically clean setting of deleted apps though. It is not a terribly big deal but I do not like leaving remnants.)

Productivity. CS: Source is not available for the Mac. You can be productive on either OS, personally I find OS X gets in my way less. There are fundamental differences in the way the two systems operate and thus how a person uses them. I am so completely and obnoxiously keyboard centric that Macs work far better for me. I do not need to remember esoteric keystrokes. Every app uses the same basic set and adds a few of its own. This was a bit of a shock to me because I always went under the assumption that OS X would be mouse centric. It is not, Apple worked to maximise the ease of use for both interfaces, something I feel Windows did not do nearly as well.

Appearance: Personal judgement there, I will leave it out to save some typing.

So why get an iBook? Because you want it. You want to avoid many of the security concerns Windows brings. You want to think different, or at least slighly skewed. You like OS X's interface and persona. Non conformists are more interesting.

Why get a Wintel? You don't want to shop for software in the "little corner." You want to be on the Same OS as your friends/family/dog/random guy down the street. You need to be able to play Counter Strike. Conformism breeds comfort and acceptance.

Ok I am done.... Well except the real answer. Work with each yourself, at least 3 separate times. Invesitgate the software available. Determine your budget. Then decide. There is no wrong answer, it depends on the user and use as to which is better. Much of the time neither is "better" just different.
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James

 
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Personally i don't give a tinkers if you switch to Mac or not. In fact the more of you that switch just brings the day closer when there will be enough Mac users out there to draw those little pencil neck nerds who like to write all those virus and trojans that the windows users love so much. Do us all a favor and stay with windows and put that day off a little longer...

If you have been working with OS X for two years and can't see the advantage of it over winders, then your a winders person at heart so stay with it. But if your sick and tired of virus, spyware, program lockups that take the whole system down, and just generally bad software, then give the Mac a try. It might not have every program you can think of, but it has what it takes to get the job done.

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rmhop81

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James
Personally i don't give a tinkers if you switch to Mac or not. In fact the more of you that switch just brings the day closer when there will be enough Mac users out there to draw those little pencil neck nerds who like to write all those virus and trojans that the windows users love so much. Do us all a favor and stay with windows and put that day off a little longer...

If you have been working with OS X for two years and can't see the advantage of it over winders, then your a winders person at heart so stay with it. But if your sick and tired of virus, spyware, program lockups that take the whole system down, and just generally bad software, then give the Mac a try. It might not have every program you can think of, but it has what it takes to get the job done.
i'm a recent switcher myself. but i won't completely let go of windows. you are one of the people that every windows person doesn't like. You think you are all badass bc you have a Mac and REALLY hate people that have windows. Who gives a rat's whisker what computer you have. Now that i have a mac that doesn't mean i'm better than people with windows, but i surely won't go acting like a local playa making fun of windows people and such like you are. That is the main reason why people hate mac's so much, it's not so much the Mac itself it's the arrogant people like you that use them.
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J-Money
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Hmm... interesting ersponses.

I've exclusively been using OSX for Final Cut, and I think I'll want to use it more in the future, so that was one of the reasons I was looking into buying a mac. It's also the one I consider the best "bang for buck," with it's durability.

Honestly, the Viruses/Spyware argument doesn't really affect me, because I've always been able to take care of my computer. Except just being that much more secure/stable also made me want to get a mac.

I'm not asking any of you to make me switch, I was just asking about the advantages of the Mac over the WinTels. I thought I could have gotten a more intelligent response (which I have from Kokopelli) than from the overriden PC-user forums I've posted on. I guess not. Every other time I've posted this, it was always pretty much to make me go against Macs. I know what they can do, and I know what I'm going to buy, but I just wanted some feedback from those who have used the product, not of people's miseries and their own personal agendas.

I've researched as much as I can on which laptop to buy, and even though I find different models, I always have the iBook as a choice, mostly because of it's affordabilty and quality. But like I said, I just wanted feedback of the consumers themselves, so I can be "convinced" that I am actually getting what I think I am.

P.S.: Thanks for the XvsXP.com site.
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cardwellm
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I am a experienced computer user and have been using PC's since my IBM PS/2 8 mHz. I am very experienced with Windows and, in fact, administer a Windows 2003 Server (among several other machines). Bottom line is, I know Windows. I recently purchased a Power Mac G5 and Powerbook G4. Here is my opinion coming from a long windows background:

1. Mac OS X is just a pleasure to use. It just feels good to use. Things work like they are supposed to (well, at least a lot more than they do in windows). To install a printer, for example, you just plug it in.

2. With Windows you spend a lot of time fiddling with it. Inevitably, after a few months, it slows down for no apparent reason. And no, I'm not talking about slowdown that is a result of spyware etc.. Windows just seems to get cluttered up as you install new programs. When you uninstall something, it almost never gets all the parts. OS X stays quick, responsive, and can stay running for long periods of time without needing a reinstall.

3. With a Mac, you'll find that you spend all your time doing what you WANT to do, not fiddling with the system.

4. When something breaks, there is no finger pointing. Apple makes the hardware and software. They will have a solution for you if there is a problem.

5. Spywarea and viruses are not a problem. You don't even have to run anti-virus software.

My honest opinion is that Mac users enjoy their machines a lot more. OS X is, frankly, fun to use. It has made computers enjoyable for me again. You can choose to believe me or not, but I think you will be much, much happier if you choose to go with the Mac. It's a system that you will be happy with and proud to own. It's elegant, it's poweful, it's well engineered. It's just better.
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cardwellm, Very well put.

XP over time does seem to slow down even if all the spyware is zapped and even Defragmenting the HDD. I can usually after a lot of work get it back to speed but it takes away from the work and fun stuff I need to get done. So far after 1.5 years with Jaguar and Panther I have not once had to reinstall or fix and fix and fix stuff and it keeps on going and fast.

I can show anyone who doubts cardwellm just how much garbage is left in the registery after you uninstall the programs you don't need. It's simply amazing! Norton is very bad at leaving the registery full of stuff.

To the OP, since you have 2 years of experience with OSX, and for what you do with your computer, I would give the Powerbook or IBook a try. I have a feeling you will be very glad you went with Mac and OSX. Really all CS will do especially in school is get in the way of you spending the time you should spend on your schoolwork! So to me it would be better not to have it. That will take away the temptation! And believe me, I know what being tempted by games is like!!!

Give the Mac a try.
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J-Money
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Ha, thanks guys. That's one thing I've never read about the OX's yet, how Panther doesn't "slow down." One thing I'd like to stop doing is having to re-format every few months, especially if I have files for school. And, that's the same reasonning I had for geting an apple about games.... hahha.

Thanks again!
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Pizza God
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How about "It's time to grow up and use a grown up computer?"

PC's are fine for a lot of things-they are great for levelling tables when the legs are uneven, and I recommend them highly if you want to use them for bait when you don't want your iBook stolen.

Convince you? Heck, you're too smart to do anything else but buy an iBook.
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James

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmhop81
i'm a recent switcher myself. but i won't completely let go of windows. you are one of the people that every windows person doesn't like. You think you are all badass bc you have a Mac and REALLY hate people that have windows. Who gives a rat's whisker what computer you have. Now that i have a mac that doesn't mean i'm better than people with windows, but i surely won't go acting like a local playa making fun of windows people and such like you are. That is the main reason why people hate mac's so much, it's not so much the Mac itself it's the arrogant people like you that use them.
My my aren't you uptight and defensive. Hit a nerve did I... Didn't happen to forget what yesterday was did you...April 1st in case you forgot. Is your eyesight as bad as your humor seems to be, if so you must have missed the fact that I also have a Pc, the self built amd64 gamer, and that only tells part of the story, i also have a pc laptop, well partly, it dual boots to Xp and Linux. I've been using pc's since the 286, so i know a little about them.

Hate people with pc's do i, not really, more feel sorry for em having to fight the constant fight of virus, trojans, spyware, and an os that tends to give lots of problems when used a lot. As far as "arrogant" friend, go take a look in the mirror, i think you missed something the last time you did.

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James

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J-Money
Hmm... interesting ersponses.

I've exclusively been using OSX for Final Cut, and I think I'll want to use it more in the future, so that was one of the reasons I was looking into buying a mac. It's also the one I consider the best "bang for buck," with it's durability.

Honestly, the Viruses/Spyware argument doesn't really affect me, because I've always been able to take care of my computer. Except just being that much more secure/stable also made me want to get a mac.

I'm not asking any of you to make me switch, I was just asking about the advantages of the Mac over the WinTels. I thought I could have gotten a more intelligent response (which I have from Kokopelli) than from the overriden PC-user forums I've posted on. I guess not. Every other time I've posted this, it was always pretty much to make me go against Macs. I know what they can do, and I know what I'm going to buy, but I just wanted some feedback from those who have used the product, not of people's miseries and their own personal agendas.

I've researched as much as I can on which laptop to buy, and even though I find different models, I always have the iBook as a choice, mostly because of it's affordabilty and quality. But like I said, I just wanted feedback of the consumers themselves, so I can be "convinced" that I am actually getting what I think I am.

P.S.: Thanks for the XvsXP.com site.
Ok, so maybe my sense of humor stinks....April Fool !!!

There ya go, see, you didn't need us to "convince me OS X over Wintel", after a couple years of using OS X you already knew what the advantages of a good powerful stable operating system were, you didn't need to be "convinced".

If you feel you need convincing go to http://www.anandtech.com and see what he has to say about the Mac. A die hard pc site for sure that doesn't mind telling the truth about Mac. And yes, the virus/spyware did effect you as you had to buy extra programs and do extra work in order to prevent problems and that money and time could have been better spent doing actual work or loafing if you wanted.

I am no computer expert, have never claimed to be. I have however, used pc type computers since the 286 was king so i do have some slight knowledge of them and how they work with windows. And i can honestly say that since i purchased my first Mac i have never been so happy with computers. I really doubt that you will ever be unhappy with your Mac laptop, they're a fine machine and will give you great service despite what the M$ FlameHeads say.

Mac Pro Intel 2.66 - 4 Gigs Ram - 10.6.1 - 30" Apple Monitor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J-Money
"What if this is just a phase, and after my first few months with the iBook, I'll just regret getting the apple?"

Apple computers hold their value pretty well, if you buy even the cheapest iBook now and a couple month later decide you don't like it, you could sell it and have enough money to buy a decent Dell laptop, check slickdeals.org, they have a link to a 15.4in widescreen notebook with a Pentium-M processor and wireless card for $710(for a bit more you could get that laptop with a Radeon X300 graphics card which would do decent at playing CS:Source).
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the mods on this website can go FCUK themselves.
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