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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?" :)

A brief intro and questions...


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Grifter

 
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Hi, my name is Grif....and I'm typing this on a PC.


At least for now anyway.


I've been toying with making the complete transition to the Mac family for some time now. I mean, I've owned iPods...I have an iPad. Don't have the iPhone - yet. It just came to Verizon, and to be honest, ATT sucks in the San Francisco Bay area. So - I'm waiting for the iPhone 5 to be released.

So I've never felt like I was a "true" member of the Mac family, but it looks like that's all about to change over the next few weeks. I've been looking at the iMac 27" 3.2 i3. I was really considering jumping to the quad-core 2.8, but in reality, I don't need that much power. I don't do a lot of picture editing...like, rarely. And I've never done any kind of video editing. Ever. Now, I know that all of that may change when I get the iMac. I just might want to learn more video and graphic stuff on it. I certainly have the interest., but for now, I think that the 3.2 i3 will be enough.

I work in IT (desktop, end user administration stuff), primarily it has been Windows based my entire 15 year career with the exception of a brief time supporting Macs at an ad agency. That is, until they hired a team of Mac technicians a couple of months later, then that job went away.

So, I'm not completely tech stupid...although, making this leap is having me feel like I opened up a computer for the first time and went..."WTF do I do now...??"

So, I have a few questions to the more knowledgeable than me population here...

In regards to purchasing from the Apple Refurb store - what are the Pro's and Con's in regards to getting a refurbished machine? What about warranty? Replacement?

Should I wait on the anticipated iMac in April that will have Thunderbolt and the Sandy Bridge processor?

Any real inconveniences to making the switch from PC to Mac?

Anything to watch out for in regards to known issues that us about to be former PC users aren't aware of?

I have a wireless Cisco 4 port router here at home. I currently have my PC and my Xbox 360 plugged into it. I did see the Time Capsule in the Apple Store. Can this be used to store and share data over the wireless network at home (pictures, files, music, video, etc.)?

How easy/difficult is it to have a printer perform wirelessly? Because let me tell you...Win7 does not like my Kodak wirelessly shared. Like, at all.

And since we're on the topic of printers...Any good reccommendations on printers for the Mac world I'm moving into? I currently have a Kodak ESP-3 that I will be replacing as well.

I know enough that I should have 2 seperate drives. One for backing up files, and one for data storage/sharing on my private network.

Thanks for reading and looking forward to making new friends here and gaining a wealth of knowledge from all of you!
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chscag

 
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First, Welcome to the Mac Forums.

Quote:
In regards to purchasing from the Apple Refurb store - what are the Pro's and Con's in regards to getting a refurbished machine? What about warranty? Replacement?
No cons. A refurbished machine from the Apple store will likely be in new condition and is fully warranted. You can even purchase Apple care for it.

Quote:
Should I wait on the anticipated iMac in April that will have Thunderbolt and the Sandy Bridge processor?
My personal opinion... yes, wait until you see what the new iMacs will have before buying. We may see a refresh around the April - May timeframe. No guaranty of that though, only Apple knows for sure.

Quote:
Any real inconveniences to making the switch from PC to Mac?
Maybe a slight learning curve, possibly none for someone of your experience.

Quote:
I have a wireless Cisco 4 port router here at home. I currently have my PC and my Xbox 360 plugged into it. I did see the Time Capsule in the Apple Store. Can this be used to store and share data over the wireless network at home (pictures, files, music, video, etc.)?
I'll let someone more familiar with the TC answer this. I don't use one.

Quote:
How easy/difficult is it to have a printer perform wirelessly? Because let me tell you...Win7 does not like my Kodak wirelessly shared. Like, at all.
Kodak printers make great door stops. Enough said about that... As for setting up a printer for wireless with your Mac, it's no more difficult than Windows 7. (which is fairly easy) Just make sure you have a printer that's Mac friendly - drivers included for the latest iteration of OS X.

Quote:
And since we're on the topic of printers...Any good reccommendations on printers for the Mac world I'm moving into? I currently have a Kodak ESP-3 that I will be replacing as well.
See above my opinion of Kodak. HP, Canon, and Brother are all Mac friendly and generally have drivers available for their latest printers and even some of the older models.

Quote:
I know enough that I should have 2 seperate drives. One for backing up files, and one for data storage/sharing on my private network.
Always a good idea to have external storage for large files such as videos and music. Also a must for backups. OS X includes a great backup program called Time Machine. You can read up on it - do a Google.

We'll look forward to seeing you on here regularly when you buy your new Mac. Any other questions or concerns, just ask away.
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chas_m

 
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chscag did a good job of answer the questions, so I'll only add on to his answers where I have something to add.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Grifter View Post
Hi, my name is Grif....
(Room en masse) HI, GRIF!


Quote:
In regards to purchasing from the Apple Refurb store - what are the Pro's and Con's in regards to getting a refurbished machine? What about warranty? Replacement?
Most of the machines I have bought -- all but two or three over the last (jiminy, is it really) 22 or so years have been refurbished. No problems ever.

Quote:
Should I wait on the anticipated iMac in April that will have Thunderbolt and the Sandy Bridge processor?
I have a standard line about how always waiting for the next big thing is generally (note that qualifier) a fool's errand, but at this point I have to agree with chscag, I suspect the new models will be substantially improved and worth a few weeks' wait.

Quote:
Any real inconveniences to making the switch from PC to Mac?
Defining "inconvenience" is kind of tricky, but I guess I would say that having to wait a few months for that hot new PC game to be available on Mac (or Steam) is an inconvenience. I don't use my Mac for any sort of serious gaming personally, I play the occasional casual game so this is a non-issue for me.

The big trick for a guy like you is going to be learning to be bi-platform.

By this I mean having to UNlearn some of the Windows mindset. A side effect of this (which could be an inconvenience) is that you'll suddenly see how some things on Windows are just WAY more complex than they need to be, which will annoy you -- and your complaining about it will annoy your Win-using friends!

Quote:
Anything to watch out for in regards to known issues that us about to be former PC users aren't aware of?
aaaand here's one of the first things you need to unlearn -- the fear, uncertainty and doubt!

Short answer: no. Apple tops the rankings on both quality AND after-sale service if needed ... from independent sources like PC Mac and PC World, which all by itself should tell you something.

Like any other mass-manufactured product, there's a chance you could get a defective one -- but you'll generally know this right away and this forum is (literally) FILLED with stories of great Apple treatment above and beyond the call.

Quote:
How easy/difficult is it to have a printer perform wirelessly? Because let me tell you...Win7 does not like my Kodak wirelessly shared. Like, at all.
Depends on the model, but it generally works very well. Bonjour is an ingenius protocol.

Quote:
And since we're on the topic of printers...Any good reccommendations on printers for the Mac world I'm moving into? I currently have a Kodak ESP-3 that I will be replacing as well.
I've been an Epson guy for years, but Canon is also fine. HP makes the setup too complicated for my liking, but the hardware's okay.

Let us know when you get one and if you have any further questions, we're here!
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Slydude

 
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I don't think you will have much trouble adding a Time Capsule to your network. I have one connected to a Belkin router with no issues. I use the TC drive to store files the entire network needs to acces though I have a small network.

Windowscdoesn't seem to have a problem seeing the TC though I did have to install the Windows utility on the TC setup disc.

Sylvester Roque Former Contributing Editor About This Particular Macintosh

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Grifter

 
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First of all - Thank you guys for your aassistance and information. You're all truly a great help.

So for now, I have decided:


1) While it's going to freakin' KILL me to wait I will wait it out and get the newer version of the iMac with the updated processor and Thunderbolt. I did speak with someone at the Apple Store last night, and they did say that if you buy it and within 30 days a newer model comes out, they'll exchange it (he did kind of spill that I should wait 2 weeks). But I'll just wait it out. Hopefully I can last that long

2) I will investigate more on the Time Capsule hardware and how it interacts with Windows computers on my home network - I am sure someone on the forums here has probably had the same question at one time. My Cisco router works great and I may just end up getting 2 1TB hard drives (1 for data backup, 1 for data storage on the network) as a "Plan B". Still unsure until I do more digging. The issue I might run into with TC, is a Windows laptop that needs to connect to the router for work use that I have to have. I really need it to connect flawlessly all the time.

3) I will be getting rid of my doorstop/paperweight (Kodak) printer and looking at a better performing Epson or Canon most likely. Which is fine. This is my 2nd Kodak inside of 3 years...you'd think I'd have learned my lesson by now...

Having worked on Macs for a short time before, I know I have a lot of Windows B.S. to unlearn....I do remember using Macs about 10 years ago and thinking, "Wow...the difference between a Mac and a Windows PC is like the difference between an automatic and a stick-shift...."

Thanks again everyone for your assistance! Truly appreciated!
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Slydude

 
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I have XP Pro running on my MacBook Pro for those times I need Windows and it seems to have no trouble interacting with the TC. This article might be a good start for your search. Use Apple's Time Capsule with a Windows PC

BTW if you are concerned about the TC not interacting well with something you need for work itvwould be possiblevto set up two wireless networks~one running on your current router and one on the TC.

Sylvester Roque Former Contributing Editor About This Particular Macintosh

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Grifter

 
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Thanks a ton Sly - I will definitely be reading up on that thread.

I have never set up 2 wireless networks in the home, so that would be something new for me. Would I be able to just port the TC into the router since I technically don't have 2 seperate lines?

I'll go read up on the thread - maybe there's something in there.....thanks!
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schweb

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
I've been an Epson guy for years, but Canon is also fine. HP makes the setup too complicated for my liking, but the hardware's okay.
Really? I've got the HP Envy 100. Awesome WiFi printer, setup was a breeze. Apple packages all the HP drivers with Snow Leopard and updates come via Software Update. Super simple.

I'd really recommend the OP consider it.:
Amazon.com: HP Envy 100 e-All-in-One D410a Printer (CN517A#B1H): Electronics

FWIW, I replaced my Kodak ESP9 with this one and couldn't be happier. Kodak's printers are garbage and this one is very "Mac-like" in style. It's also small, quiet, and adds duplexing which I really like.

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Ooooo....Thanks Schweb....I will definitely look more closely at that....
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grifter View Post
Ooooo....Thanks Schweb....I will definitely look more closely at that....
You'll definitely like it.

I too spent a few years in the purgatory of Kodak printers. Went through several models thinking, "boy they can't really all be this bad". But I was wrong. Had several replaced, tried a new model, but all had the same problems, especially the flaky printhead. Never again.

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The thing I have had about the Kodak printer, is that it works for a little while, then just barely prints anything legible for no apparent reason. I'll be upgrading my computer set up soon...printer along with it...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grifter View Post
The thing I have had about the Kodfak printer, is that it works for a little while, then just barely prints anything legible for no apparent reason. I'll be upgrading my computer set up soon...printer along with it...
Yep, that's the printhead. It just randomly stops working and you have to replace it. I'd say I was lucky to keep it working for 3 months at a time.

I don't print a lot, but it made it really inconvenient when I needed to print a paper for school.

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I did a little research on that printer you mentioned Schweb...I see some people have complained about losing connectivity with that printer on their network, difficulty of set up, not able to print from iPad or iPhone - any of those issues with you? Of course, most don't mention what OS they're using or anything like that to help fill the back end of information either....

I was reading one review and I went back to locate it but can't find it now....someone said that you can't print duplex from iPad or iPhone?

Also, the duplex is internal, correct? I am not finding anything that states to purchase a seperate duplex for installation.

*To the moderators - I don't mean to create several topics inside of one thread, I blame that on my excitement on getting a new machine, looking forward to using it and just overall giddyness. I will post future hardware related questions in the appropriate place*
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grifter View Post
I did a little research on that printer you mentioned Schweb...I see some people have complained about losing connectivity with that printer on their network, difficulty of set up, not able to print from iPad or iPhone - any of those issues with you? Of course, most don't mention what OS they're using or anything like that to help fill the back end of information either....
No issues here. I mean you could lose connectivity if you have a flaky router I suppose, but that would affect any printer. So far the Envy's never lost connection, I used to have to reboot my Kodak all the time to get it back on the network.

I also have never had an issue printing from the iPad or iPhone. I wonder if the people complaining were from when AirPrint was first released last year? There have been several firmware updates for most of HPs printers that improved AirPrint compatibility.

Quote:
I was reading one review and I went back to locate it but can't find it now....someone said that you can't print duplex from iPad or iPhone?
You can, I just did it yesterday. There's actually a toggle on the print dialog box to turn duplex on or off each time your print from an iOS device.

Quote:
Also, the duplex is internal, correct? I am not finding anything that states to purchase a seperate duplex for installation.
Yep, it's built in to the printer.

Quote:
*To the moderators - I don't mean to create several topics inside of one thread, I blame that on my excitement on getting a new machine, looking forward to using it and just overall giddyness. I will post future hardware related questions in the appropriate place*
No worries, happens a lot in our new switcher threads.

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Originally Posted by Grifter View Post
Thanks a ton Sly - I will definitely be reading up on that thread.

I have never set up 2 wireless networks in the home, so that would be something new for me. Would I be able to just port the TC into the router since I technically don't have 2 seperate lines?

I'll go read up on the thread - maybe there's something in there.....thanks!
If you use the Airport setup utility included with the TC and do a manual setup you can either create a new network or extend an existing network. Currently I have the TC connected to a Belkin router via Ethernet. Once I had them physically connected I completed the rest of the setup steps for the wireless network. I can provide more details when I am at my Mac.

BTW if you have a printer that you want to use that does not natively support wireless network printing the USB port on the TC can work well assuming the printer has Mac drivers. The one problem I have had with that arrangement is that you may loose some functions of the driver such as the ability to check ink levels from the utility.

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