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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?" :)

Most ideal mac for me?


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mapleridge818

 
Member Since: Mar 02, 2013
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Hello everyone, I'm new to the forum, and to be honest don't know a lot about computers, just that I need a new one, haha.
I'm using a powermac with the 1.8 single processor, and it's lacking a bit. I can't really watch youtube videos or anything like that, so I've opted to upgrade to a slightly newer, faster mac. I like macs more than PCs. I always had constant problems with PCs freezing, and acting different every time I used them. After buying my first mac (the one I'm on) I don't want to go back to PCs, but I'm on a budget and can't afford a new Mac.

The two macs I'm looking at are imacs and mac pros. Both from the 2006-2009 era. There are a couple of mac pros available for a reasonable price. They have the dual 2.66 processors with twin cores, but have lower bus speed (677) and DDR2 ram etc. The Imacs are 2.4 processors, some with ddr2 some with ddr3 ram, and higher bus speed 800-1.3.

I guess the question is, is an older mac pro (2006) better, or faster than a newer imac (2008-2009)? The mac pro has more processors, but slower ram, and bus speed.
Is there any year or model that should be avoided? Is there any year where there was a major change worth paying extra for? Are the older 2006 white imacs good (there are a couple 24" 2.16 for sale too)?
I do some video editing, but nothing serious, watch youtube videos etc and play the odd game.

Any info would be great. Like I said I don't know a lot about how bus speed, ram speed, and extra processors help the speed of the computer. I know more is better, but don't know which is the most important.
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pigoo3

 
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Given the computers you mentioned (1st generation Mac Pro's & 2008-2009 iMac)...the iMac is probably the better choice...since the iMac's can run the latest OS version...and the 1st gen. Mac Pro's cannot.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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nickyr

 
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my mid 2007 iMac is happily running mountain lion (I have upgraded the RAM to 4GB)

what have the Roman's ever done for us?

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mapleridge818

 
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It looks like the "quad core" mac pro I'd be looking at would be able to run at least Lion, 10.7. Is there a major advantage to running the newer OS? Is 10.8 something that should be of major importance to me? I'm still running 10.5 right now.
What would running 10.8 enable you to do that 10.7 would not?
Thanks for the responses.
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chscag

 
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To be quite honest.... I wouldn't even run Lion on that machine. Buy a copy of Snow Leopard 10.6.8 from Apple on line ($19.99) and run that instead. It will run faster, allow you to run older PPC apps, and you'll still have access to the Mac App store.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mapleridge818 View Post
Is there a major advantage to running the newer OS? Is 10.8 something that should be of major importance to me? I'm still running 10.5 right now.
What would running 10.8 enable you to do that 10.7 would not?
Thanks for the responses.
You're not considering one other possibility...what about OS versions beyond OS 10.8 (such as OS 10.9, OS 10.10...or whatever they are called). No guarantees that the iMac's you're looking at will be able to run them...but you already know that the early Mac Pro's cannot (since it cannot even run OS 10.8).

You can also run into a lot of compatibility problems if you cannot run newer versions of the Mac OS. Printer compatibility, browser compatibility, iPhone, iPad, iPod compatibility, etc.

If you are running OS 10.5 currently...and need continued PPC app. compatibility...then the Mac Pro would be a possibility.

But if you currently have the chance to buy a newer computer...wouldn't you want it to be as modern as possible?? From the day you get it...it will only be getting older...and less and less compatible as time goes on.

Just some stuff to consider.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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harryb2448

 
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Put a few dollars extra in and go as suggested with a later model. Have a look at Apple Online for refurbished iMacs.

Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!
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mapleridge818

 
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Ok, thanks for the info. I'm headed to go look at a 2009 2.66 20", running 10.8 already.
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Much better value than an older machine that cannot run Mountain lion.

Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!
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Ctrl-Opt-Del

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chscag View Post
Buy a copy of Snow Leopard 10.6.8 from Apple on line ($19.99)
They still sell that? Thought they stopped shipping it when Mountain Lion dropped & it became two generations out of date...

For my purposes as an engineering undergraduate; Windows is respectable (& generally necessary), Linux is admirable (& often useful), OS X is enjoyable (& requires no further justification, although plenty could be given)!
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ctrl-Opt-Del View Post
They still sell that? Thought they stopped shipping it when Mountain Lion dropped & it became two generations out of date...
Yes Apple did stop selling Snow Leopard (OS 10.6). But then they started selling it again something like 6 months ago (maybe longer). I'm waiting for Lion to show up again (fingers crossed).

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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chas_m

 
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The ONLY reason Apple started re-selling SL is because there are hundreds of thousands (well less now) of customers who CAN upgrade to Mountain Lion (ie their machine meets the specs) but (foolishly) DIDN'T and now need to be able to upgrade to ML in order to run new software and have no other path. Apple had always sold SL through phone sales but apparently demand warranted that they move to making it available through retailers and the online store again.

There is no chance they will do the same for Lion, IMO.
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