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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?" :)

Which laptop to buy?

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skyecade's Avatar
Member Since: May 04, 2006
Location: Outside of Boston
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Hi guys and gals. I'm a PC user who is extremely curious about OS X and Macs in general. I own a Dell XPS desktop and an XPS laptop (among other PCs). The laptop is gigantic and not very portable, so I was considering a second, smaller (and cheaper) laptop.

I figured this would be a great opportunity to try out a Mac. The problem is, I know nothing about them. Nothing! Essentially I'm looking for the cheapest laptop I can get that will still give me a decent Mac experience. But I don't know where to begin. Maybe some of you can help. Ready for my list of question?

Should I buy a refurbished Mac or a brand new low-end Mac.
What is a good entry level model?
Where is the best place to buy a Mac? i.e., Apple Stores, Ebay, etc...

I think that's it for now. BTW, a friend of mine is giving me one of the older lamp style iMacs. I'm not sure if it will have OS X on it or not. Or if it can even run it.

Thanks everyone.
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I would either get the 12 inch powerbook or the 14 inch ibook, I am not a fan of the 12 in ibook.

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Member Since: Mar 15, 2006
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OS X would run nicely on a 'lamp style' G4 iMac (one of these: )

Just make sure you have at least 256mb, ideally 512mb +.

I have one of the older G3 400MHz iMacs which runs OS X Panther nicely with 640mb RAM. It's no speed demon, but it runs fine.

I love the G4 iMac design (one of the best from Apple IMHO) and I really want to buy one to replace my G3. But they hold their value quite well.

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My wife has one of those and is running 10.4.6 right now. It's getting a bit "long in the tooth" and we are going to buy her a new iMac in the next few months, but not a bad machine at all.

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Member Since: May 04, 2006
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go all out and get a macbook pro

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i was in your exect same situation a few months ago so i decided on a 14" iBook brnd new and couldn't be happier osx isn't anything to learn its so simple your'll love it go with the iBook GREAT for portability but you may want to wait for the intell iBooks (unless they will change the name of the)
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if you are just starting to get into macs, I would NOT get into a macbook pro. Personally i'd wait for the intel ibooks also, because you will see a speed increase in the next release. It will also be running on intel chips, so it will have better resell value if you ever decide to sell.

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Aren't the intel ibooks the "Macbooks" that have been rumored to be released on the 9th. Anyways, I agree with the above poster. I've found that Mac OS X doesn't NEED that much to run processor wise, it's more the RAM it seems (get a gig). So unless you're a gamer, which I'm still not sure if you'd need it then, or you're going to be doing some heavy video/audio editing on this thing I'd say an iBook ("Macbook" -not MacBook Pro-) would be perfect for you.
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Member Since: Apr 16, 2006
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I am a recent switcher that sold both my pc and sony laptop. I have 20" iMac and now I am in the market for an ultra portable notebook. I am waiting to see what the the intel notebook (macbook) will offer. I don't plan on going over 13.3", I can't stand the look of the iBook, it looks and feels cheap to me. I would wait if I were you or I would get a powerbook.
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Powerbooks are still very good machines to own, I would go for the 12 inch one whilst stocks last, I have a strange feeling that there won't be such thing as a 12 inch powerbook or a 12 inch macbook pro soon enough, especially since there might be a 12 inch intel Macbook on the way. The only downside about it is that unlike the other powerbooks this one doesn't have a cardbus slot, although it isn't really needed since cardbus slots on powerbooks would only really be used for aiport which is built in standard!

Back with the mac!
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Member Since: Apr 25, 2005
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Yeah id wait for the intel iBooks. even a 12" iBook should do you if you want to buy now, but id wait maybe a few months if possible
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This is always a good question and a hard one, because macs cost, "just a little more" LOL.. than a pc would, but I would have to say you are looking in the right direction even considering a mac. Bottom line is that OS X works, and it works perfectly on any mac. I am a casual/school/web research user on my mac and I find that the speed weather it is on my mothers imac g3 or my macbook pro isnt' really an issue. Some how the way the macs work is that you will never have a program error out or have the mac lock up because your hardware can't handle the software u are running. Simple what will happen is you will see things happen a slower or faster.

I switched over to mac's 2 years ago and I couldn't be any happier. Like I said, I have a macbook pro, which I have setup to dual book WinXP. It is a sweet deal, this is my second mac. The only downside is that right now, there isn't much universal software being written in the gaming industry. So i prefer to game in winxp vs. os X. this just run faster atm. :batman:
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I was in a similar position you in a few months ago. Go all in, you won't regret it.

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