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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?" :)

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AccessPA

 
Member Since: Mar 22, 2011
Posts: 72
AccessPA has a little shameless behaviour in the past
Mac Specs: 3/11 17" MBP 8g/500 Glossy, IPod Touch 4thgen 8gig, 32Gig Verizon 3G + WiFi IPadII

AccessPA is offline
Howdy all.

Not really a switcher but an adder.

Am anticipating my first Mac, a 17" MBP that is likely over the Pacific right now enroute from Shanghai.

I'm a PC user since 1989. Not into the jihadist stuff or us vs them, I consider neither better, just different. OK, a visit to the Mac store in Reston, VA did impress me with some things that are better, starting at the start (impressive boot speed!) and the continuous comments about "you'll love it" and that a lot of things are handled for you. I can fix a lot of stuff, and MS has gotten some of the message and actually improved things XP and later (vista notwithstanding) but sometimes I'm just not interested in maintainence and clueless dialogs (on my older machines, I have not upgraded to 7 yet but will shortly.)

Being an Access programmer, I do not anticipate ever being without a PC. I know about the dual boot, but in a sign of an open mind, I am keeping my new Mac Mac-pure. No dual boot, no MS software. I do wish to indulge a pure Mac experience in order to keep my objectivity. So, my home editions of Access will stay on the PC. If the case presented and experience are what I expect, I will likely use the Mac primarily for most everyday use, in no small part because it will also be my newest machine.

It is with the basic 2.2 processor, the quad core I7, and I bumped it up to 8g of ram. I took the remote, a copy of Bento and the glossy hi-rez. I did strongly desire a lit keyboard. I can type like the wind but still occasionally need to look. So the keyboard is eagerly anticipated since I'm a late night low light huddler. I knocked the HD back to 500 so I could get the higher RPM.
I took iwork to go with the iLife. Because iWork claims to both open and saveAs .docs and .xls files, it allowed me to skip MS Office. As a contractor I need to be able to open and edit resumes and have always been an Excel junkie for figuring out things big and small, business and personal. if iWork handles all that, I can go on vacation or a road trip and be able to react if new work comes in. Confidence is high.

I do own a hi quality Sony HD vidcam which will dump stills and vids. I want to surf with greater speed and less virus risk and believe the Mac will handle that well. I have an older but still competant Kodak still digicam. I already own a wireless Epson of the kind that Apple seems to hawk with new purchases and it has been standard for more than awhile that mac will run all my existing periperals.

I am in a rural PITA internet zone. I have to pay about 60 a month for a Verizon cellular USB wand, and I'm hoping it will not only work when I plug it into the Mac but that it may also generate a Wifi signal so I can sit in the living room with other devices (have not fallen for the iPadII yet but iI'm thinking about it). We shall see.

I'm glad you're all here. i'm glad there's still a two-platform world because I honestly think the two make each other better. MS would be far worse off without Mac for a competition, and equally so MS failings make a niche for MAc to exploit. God help us if we lose either one. I can see some very cool stuff that Mac is doing and they've certainly made the case for me or I wouldnt be here, and MS has given me more than 16 years of employment doing useful programming. Maybe I'm just a tech geek.

I am salivating for the little monster to arrive and will let you all know how it goes or if I need to replace any broken windows (no pun intended) if I decide to toss my pc's out of one!

Standby, I'm sure there'll be questions though I have read the awesome FAC up top. Good reference.
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cwa107

 
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Member Since: Dec 20, 2006
Location: Middletown, Pennsylvania
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Mac Specs: 15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD

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Sounds like you're in for some fun. Congrats on the new purchase and welcome to Mac-Forums!

Make sure you have a poke around the Windows & Other OSes forum - particularly this sticky:

Running Windows on a Mac: A Switcher's Guide

Make sure you update this thread with your impressions and any initial questions you might have and we'll be happy to help.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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AccessPA

 
Member Since: Mar 22, 2011
Posts: 72
AccessPA has a little shameless behaviour in the past
Mac Specs: 3/11 17" MBP 8g/500 Glossy, IPod Touch 4thgen 8gig, 32Gig Verizon 3G + WiFi IPadII

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Thank you. It should be here thursday.

I should add, this forum has already been helpful. Some lurking prior to purchase helped guide my decisions. While all mechanical manmade devices will be subject to problems, it seems some of the people with satisfaction problems here just aren't following the instructions, or ran into a once in a blue moon lemons that all manufacturing processes are prone to.

This forum tends to help you see the forest for the trees.

Just in: 11.5 hrs from Shanghai to the FedEx hub in Memphis. I ordered it last friday night. might be here Weds, fingers crossed!
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bobtomay

 
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Member Since: Dec 22, 2006
Location: Texas, where else?
Posts: 25,191
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Mac Specs: 15" MBP 2.33 C2D 256 4GB, MBA 13" i7 1.8, MB 2.0 2GB, Nano 4th, 3GS, iPad 1

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Congrats on the new system. A first Mac always seems to make even us long time computer users feel like a kid in a candy store.

I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.
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mcbrew

 
Member Since: Feb 05, 2011
Posts: 52
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Mac Specs: 2010+ Mac Mini, 2.4 ghz, 8 gigs RAM / iPad (1st gen) 32gb 3G / iPhone4 16gb / iPod Video 30gb

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Congrats! I just switched a few months ago to a Mac mini. I am loving it! I was a bit anti-Apple in the past, but I have grown to love their style, refinement, and simplicity ever since owning a few iPods, an iPad, and an iPhone4.

I have really gotten to like the whole idea of "apps" instead of going out and buying software at a store. Everything is cheaper and easier to find, since it is all in one place and there are lots of reviews. I think it is so cool that I can download a fin game on my iPad or iPhone while waiting in a doctor's office for 99 cents... and I can easily find a program to convert sound files to different formats for $5 on the Mac. Of course, there are many free apps, too. And, yes... there are free and cheap programs for Windows PCs, but they are all spread out on the internet and are potentially full of mal-ware and viruses.

I had fun in iPhoto the other day, creating a hardbound coffee table book from photos of a Caribbean sailing trip I took in 2008. It ended up costing about $40, which seems like a heck of a deal! I didn't have to subscribe to any photo service to make it... just did it all in iPhoto and it was charged to my iTunes account! I can't wait for it to arrive!

On a more personal note: I can totally relate to your internet issues. I live in a rural area that didn't have cable, fios, or DSL... and dial-up was lucky to reach 14.4. I live in a duplex, and split the cost of a 128k ISDN line for about $160 a month... not including the $800 modem. I tried the cellular service for a while, but at $60 a pop for two accounts, it was getting expensive... and to get a good signal, I had to sit out on my deck. They FINALLY installed cable on my road after a neighbor of mine (lawyer) sued Comcast. I'm loving it! I hope you get a good alternative in the near future.

Have fun with your new Mac!
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AccessPA

 
Member Since: Mar 22, 2011
Posts: 72
AccessPA has a little shameless behaviour in the past
Mac Specs: 3/11 17" MBP 8g/500 Glossy, IPod Touch 4thgen 8gig, 32Gig Verizon 3G + WiFi IPadII

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcbrew View Post
I had fun in iPhoto the other day, creating a hardbound coffee table book from photos of a Caribbean sailing trip I took in 2008. It ended up costing about $40, which seems like a heck of a deal! I didn't have to subscribe to any photo service to make it... just did it all in iPhoto and it was charged to my iTunes account! I can't wait for it to arrive!
This looks like fun...I would really like to check this out!
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AccessPA

 
Member Since: Mar 22, 2011
Posts: 72
AccessPA has a little shameless behaviour in the past
Mac Specs: 3/11 17" MBP 8g/500 Glossy, IPod Touch 4thgen 8gig, 32Gig Verizon 3G + WiFi IPadII

AccessPA is offline
It's here!

No questions just yet, I seem to have fallen right into it.

You do have to jiggle the mag-safe connector till the light comes on. Saw the battery shrinking and went furiously searching for some control that needed to be set.

It arrived from Shanghai fully charged. My first 3 hours on it were on Chinese electricity!

Ok, here something I havent been able to figure out. The Verizon software in PC has a usage button. Mac set the connection up perfectly but does not appear to give me that option. I suppose I could install the VZ disc and see what happens but I don't want anything I'm not gonna need. Ideas? I do need to check system usage since I'm on a 5gig limit and **** if the MBP didnt just need to download almost a gig of updates.
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AccessPA

 
Member Since: Mar 22, 2011
Posts: 72
AccessPA has a little shameless behaviour in the past
Mac Specs: 3/11 17" MBP 8g/500 Glossy, IPod Touch 4thgen 8gig, 32Gig Verizon 3G + WiFi IPadII

AccessPA is offline
Heres a good question, first I cannot answer.


What heck is that extra power cord for?

I got the part about the magsafe one, it clips in and the clunky blocklike thing has the prongs that plug into the wall.

There is a second cord in the box, with a very standard looking 3 prong wall plug, and the female end does not match anything on the MBP or anything else in the box. Actually there was nothing other than the system DVDs and the remote.
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MikeM

 
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Member Since: Oct 06, 2007
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 201
MikeM has a spectacular aura about
Mac Specs: 13" MBP - Mid 2012 - i7 / iPad Air / iPhone 5s / ATV3

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Quote:
Originally Posted by AccessPA View Post
Heres a good question, first I cannot answer.


What heck is that extra power cord for?

I got the part about the magsafe one, it clips in and the clunky blocklike thing has the prongs that plug into the wall.

There is a second cord in the box, with a very standard looking 3 prong wall plug, and the female end does not match anything on the MBP or anything else in the box. Actually there was nothing other than the system DVDs and the remote.
Take a closer look at the plug on the charger. It disconnects and the extra cable extends the length.

I leave the long cable plugged in at home and take the charger with the small connector with in my laptop bag.

-MikeM
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cwa107

 
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Member Since: Dec 20, 2006
Location: Middletown, Pennsylvania
Posts: 26,632
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Mac Specs: 15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD

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Just to elaborate, the fold-out two-pronged portion is what we like to call a "duck head" connector:



Pull on it, and it pops right off. From there, you can attach the longer, three-pronged cord. Additionally, you'll notice that the power brick also has two flip-out "wings" that allow you to wrap the other end of the cord up, for easy traveling.

As Mike mentioned, I find it convenient to just take the brick with the duck head with me in my bag on daily travels. It doesn't take up a whole lot of space and is handy for emergencies.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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AccessPA

 
Member Since: Mar 22, 2011
Posts: 72
AccessPA has a little shameless behaviour in the past
Mac Specs: 3/11 17" MBP 8g/500 Glossy, IPod Touch 4thgen 8gig, 32Gig Verizon 3G + WiFi IPadII

AccessPA is offline
My initial thoughts and impressions are that this is a pretty stunning device. It's matured and improved since my last adventure in the early 90's trying a Mac at work and I recall it being frustrating.

This is completely different. I haven't gotten a stopwatch out yet, but the cumulative waste of time waiting for a conventional machine to boot up compared to instant on and instant off using Sleep is compelling to say the least.

Apps not having food fights with each other in the memory spaces competing for resources is also a welcome relief. Maybe its just this machine is new and has a lot of RAM, but on my VAIO with 3g of ram, too many open windows in IE will put on a light show of non-stop blinking that essentially renders the open web pages useless and forces a complete dump. Close all the IE pages completely. That's an improvement for MS, at least an app crash only happens within that apps memory, whereas you used to have to reboot the entire machine. But it would be nice if it didnt happen at all. In Vista anyway, I haven't seen 7 yet.

Still, all kind of things open on the Mac and no problems...at ALL. Sleep is pretty impressive. This is another MS impression I have shaken off. Windows has had a sleep or hibernate function too, but its BS. If you use it, the memory buffers still don't clear out the way a Mac's apparently are managed. Wake up a PC off sleep and it will usually come back to life, but sleep in and out of it over 2 or 3 days and it will get slow and cranky and finally you just realize that you need to re-boot if you want to get anything done.

With the Mac, I cant tell the difference between fresh out of the box. It doenst have any random pauses, those little mini seizures the PC has where it stops for a few seconds then resumes while some subterranean resource hog does something that's apparently none of my business.

I still have some learning curve left to go with the keyboard issues, but a lot of it I've figured out.

Thanks for the power cord update.

Me Likey.
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cwa107

 
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Member Since: Dec 20, 2006
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Funny you should mention the sleep mode - that's one of my favorite qualities of the Mac. I close the lid when I'm done and open it back up and I'm right back where I was - seamlessly. I go weeks (and sometimes months) without rebooting.

Add to that the fact that I don't have to update anti-virus, run spyware scans, CCleaner, a defrag tool or a daily stream of Windows Updates, and I think the Mac is pretty compelling as a notebook. Sure, it has its own eccentricities that can sometimes be annoying, but the pros handily outweigh the cons.

Anyway, glad to hear you're getting along OK and thanks for checking in!

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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