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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?" :)

One last attempt to switch?


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asolo

 
Member Since: May 30, 2006
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Mac Specs: iMac 20" core duo 2ghz; OS-X 10.4.7; 2gbram; 256mb graphics; 250gbHD; delivered 6/14/06

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Newbie. Hello all.

OK, here's the deal....(sorry for length, but I'm new here and really, really, really would like to avoid making another mistake!)

I'm an "ideal" Mac candidate. I hate(!) PC maintenance and I have money. Just want a machine that does what its supposed to and doesn't break. Been using PC's for 15 years. However, I also have had two bad Mac experiences 1) new G4 desk-top that wouldn't work and the dealer techs couldn't get it to work. Refunded. 2) new G5 two years ago that wouldn't work and dealer techs couldn't get it to work. Refunded.

I WANT(!) the benefits Macs are supposed to offer. Currently running HP media center pc m490n (pentium 4; 3.4; XP media center). After two years I finally have it settled down but maintenance chores (registry, anti-virus, malware, spybots, etc.) are a constant part of my computer-life. I know how to do it but I hate it, resent having to do it, and it eats my time. I surf a lot and do lots of music and photo stuff (3-20mb files and lots of them) along with usual e-mail load. No business apps. Retired and lovin' it. Just want to do what I want to do.

Considering purchase of Mac laptop to ease the transition while my existing PC is still running reliably so I'll at least have a familiar fall-back as opposed to changing over entirely and being frozen out if the thing doesn't work. That's partly why previous two Mac attempts were so disastrous. Assuming it works, intention would be to purchase G5 hot-rod desk top within another year. Otherwise will probably build my own PC and continue in the purgatory I've become so accustomed to.

So...the question....is THIS the time to buy my Mac laptop and begin the hoped-for change-over or should I wait until Mac's intel-transition is further along? (Considering 2.O pro with 2mg ram and 7200 HD -- I like speed.)

Hoping for sage advice. Ok to slap me around if I need it.
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playm0de

 
Member Since: Feb 24, 2006
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What do you mean the previous macs "wouldnt work"? They wouldnt even turn on?
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asolo

 
Member Since: May 30, 2006
Posts: 205
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Mac Specs: iMac 20" core duo 2ghz; OS-X 10.4.7; 2gbram; 256mb graphics; 250gbHD; delivered 6/14/06

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Quote:
Originally Posted by playm0de
What do you mean the previous macs "wouldnt work"? They wouldnt even turn on?
G4 wouldn't recognize printer, scanner, or any peripheral. Dealer tech couldn't accomplish either. Also kept looping in its own programs with no way out except hard shut-down. Tech seemed astonished at that. Assured me they could fix everything and make it right. Inasmuch as this kind of thing was precisely what I thought I was buying my way out of, I declined. Local retailer. I bought after their assurances none of this would ever happen with a Mac. (much more, trying to keep short)

G5 (different local dealer) wouldn't recognize peripherals either. Tech got past that. However, would not recognize its own dealer-installed RAM either. Plus it looped frequently. Plus it wouldn't recognize or read files from WD external hard-drive which had all my data on it. AppleCare and Tech both said my external hard drive was bad. It wasn't. I took it to their store and plugged it into several of their own computers all of which recognized it instantly. Tech couldn't figure it out. AppleCare no help to him. Gave no assurances. Again, this is the kind of thing I thought I was avoiding by going with Mac. (much more, trying to keep short)

Both of these purchases were high-end selection but were at transition points for AppleMac software OS9 and OS10 respectively. May have something to do with that. I don't know. All I know for sure is after my research and dealer assurances, they 1) failed to deliver and 2) I know it wasn't me or my PC mind-set because their own techs couldn't get them to work either.

I was very dissapointed both times because I researched carefully and discussed all with dealer/owners at some length before purchase -- including all previous experience and intentions. I have little doubt my experiences were exceptions. However, they did occur and they were deal-breakers.

I STILL want what AppleMac promises. That's why I'm considering present approach of beginning with laptop while present PC still operational.
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techster82

 
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Member Since: Jan 07, 2006
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You could always get an Intel imac thus having the ability to run OSX, and fall back to Windows anytime you want via that Angel called Bootcamp. We bought one of the first 20" Intel imacs off the line and have not experienced any problems to date. It runs Windows beautifully and I would stack it up speed wise against that HP box you have any day of the week.
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asolo

 
Member Since: May 30, 2006
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Mac Specs: iMac 20" core duo 2ghz; OS-X 10.4.7; 2gbram; 256mb graphics; 250gbHD; delivered 6/14/06

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Quote:
Originally Posted by techster82
You could always get an Intel imac thus having the ability to run OSX, and fall back to Windows anytime you want via that Angel called Bootcamp. We bought one of the first 20" Intel imacs off the line and have not experienced any problems to date. It runs Windows beautifully and I would stack it up speed wise against that HP box you have any day of the week.
I am considering one of Macbook Pro models for portability along with my experimentation. I would regard 3G+ expenditure as well worthwhile if the product works as represented. Are these units better/worse/same performance-wise compared with your iMac in your opinion?

Are you really saying your Intel iMac runs XP better/faster than P4 PC's? Very interesting. I must learn more about such comparisons.
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techster82

 
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Member Since: Jan 07, 2006
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Yes, my 2GHZ Intel core duo imac runs windows faster than my 2.4HT P4, or a 2.8 Dual Core P4. It boots faster and is all around snappier. The Macbook Pro models seem to be solid machines. There was a heat issue with many of them due to Apple not teaching their Chinese builders how to properly install thermal paste. A friend purchased a 15" Macbook Pro a couple of months ago and his runs fine temperature wise. Of course you get all of the speed and features of the Imac with a Macbook Pro, plus portability. I don't think it would be a bad choice at all for you based on what it looks like your needs are. Good luck with your purchase if you decide to make one.
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coach_z

 
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they say that the third time is the charm, right?

it sounds like you have had pretty interesting experiences with your first two macs that are very uncommon or you have been trying to use perhipials that simply were not supported at the time.

i have had two macs that run beautifully, a g4 1ghz powerbook and a dual 2.7 G5 powermac.

my advice would be to not use authorised resellers this time and go through apple, maybe you got refurbs that werent refurbed by the right people or simply mistreated machines by your techs working on them.

all in all the switch is up to you but it appears they are making some fabulous machines right now and i cant wait until i find the money and a real need for a third mac

-chris

MoTM honor roll...
when?
i dont remember
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asolo

 
Member Since: May 30, 2006
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Mac Specs: iMac 20" core duo 2ghz; OS-X 10.4.7; 2gbram; 256mb graphics; 250gbHD; delivered 6/14/06

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Quote:
Originally Posted by coach_z
it sounds like you have had pretty interesting experiences with your first two macs that are very uncommon or you have been trying to use perhipials that simply were not supported at the time.
-chris
Peripherals in question were each purchased with Mac in mind -- all compitable and recognized by AppleCare, dealer, and dealer-tech as such. Nobody in the chain could identify the problem in failing to connect the G4. Two years later, G5 tech was able to get them to work but it took him 3 hours on-site to do it. Not exactly plug'n'play. Interestingly, when I bought my then-new HP to replace the failed G5, all this stuff pretty much just plugged in and ran. As a result, I'm pretty much a walking example of cognitive dissonance at this point.

Interesting your comment about "resellers". Both of these purchases were from resellers. Tomorrow morning (Wednesday morning) I'm going to stop in the Apple Store and tell my tale of woe and of ambition. Think maybe I'll tote along my external hard drive. Who knows but what I might make some new friends.
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mac57

 
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Just my two cents. I just purchased what you call a "G5 Hotrod" machine, a dual core 2.3 GHz Power Mac G5. I have hooked it up to a new printer (Epson R800), a new Viewsonic monitor (VP2130b), new speakers, a USB ZIP drive, a Firewire Compact Flash card reader and of course my two iPods. EVERYTHING has worked seamlessly and right away. No glitches at all. With most of this hardware being new, driver support etc. should have been more challenging than for older, longer established hardware. Despite this, everything JUST WORKED.

I love my new Mac. It *is* a hotrod, and it is so much better than a Windows box in SO many ways. Dashboard widgets alone are worth the price all by themselves! However, lets not forget the speed, the elegance, the sheer beauty of the interface itself and all of the EXCELLENT included apps in the iLife suite, not to mention the VASTLY underrated Preview app, which is nothing short of incredible - the best I have ever seen in its class.

I would recommend that the third time should be the charm. I am a first time Mac user, who like you had used Windows forever. My experience has been excellent. I can only offer this as a hope that your experience has been very atypical.

Good luck!

My Macs: iMac 27" 3.4 GHz, Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, PowerMac G5 Quad 2.5 GHz, G4 Cube with 1.2 GHz Upgrade
My iStuff: 64GB iPhone 5, 64GB iPad4, 30GB iPod Video, 16GB iPod Touch
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caveatipss
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mac57
Just my two cents. I just purchased what you call a "G5 Hotrod" machine, a dual core 2.3 GHz Power Mac G5. I have hooked it up to a new printer (Epson R800), a new Viewsonic monitor (VP2130b), new speakers, a USB ZIP drive, a Firewire Compact Flash card reader and of course my two iPods. EVERYTHING has worked seamlessly and right away. No glitches at all. With most of this hardware being new, driver support etc. should have been more challenging than for older, longer established hardware. Despite this, everything JUST WORKED.

I love my new Mac. It *is* a hotrod, and it is so much better than a Windows box in SO many ways. Dashboard widgets alone are worth the price all by themselves! However, lets not forget the speed, the elegance, the sheer beauty of the interface itself and all of the EXCELLENT included apps in the iLife suite, not to mention the VASTLY underrated Preview app, which is nothing short of incredible - the best I have ever seen in its class.

I would recommend that the third time should be the charm. I am a first time Mac user, who like you had used Windows forever. My experience has been excellent. I can only offer this as a hope that your experience has been very atypical.

Good luck!
Why not a quad core?
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asolo

 
Member Since: May 30, 2006
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Mac Specs: iMac 20" core duo 2ghz; OS-X 10.4.7; 2gbram; 256mb graphics; 250gbHD; delivered 6/14/06

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Update...FWIW...visited local Apple Store this morning carrying a CD with various of my own files on it to "test" the various machines with. Tested from the CD and also transferred files to machines' own HD and worked with them that way. No decision today, but did come away with following opinions:

1) iMac very impressive. Speed of functions and transfers greater than expected...I would estimate close/same as my P4 3.4. I expected it to be tolerably quick but was not expecting the speed I found. Was not expecting it to be comparable. Optical drive was slower, otherwise fast all around.

2) iMac much faster than equiv-spec Macbook Pro laptop. Suspect wait-times related to drives more than actual internal processing speed, but still a deal-breaking difference in how I would work with it. Only advantage I see is quick/easy portability -- which I don't need.

3) In two separate visits, talked with six different staffers. Each was focused and knowledgeable. None had any particular agenda. No pushing. Only listening and helpful responses. Compared to staff at computer stores I've become accustomed to, really a breath of fresh air.

4) Although I am not considering the Mac Mini and it was slower than the others, its speed and bang-for-the-buck was absolutely astonishing. Was expecting a silly toy and found it to be a very capable machine.

The wheels continue to turn. Enlightening visit.
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Jabjabs

 
Member Since: Feb 02, 2006
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That plug and play problem is strange maybe the USB board was fried or something like that?

Quote:
4) Although I am not considering the Mac Mini and it was slower than the others, its speed and bang-for-the-buck was absolutely astonishing. Was expecting a silly toy and found it to be a very capable machine.
That's what I though when I first saw it, now I own one. By the sounds of it the iMac is for you but that's your decision.

Mac Life - Apple Mac computers news, forums and more...

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alucard

 
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I just bought a Mac mini from ebay and got it yesterday. I am VERY impressed. It's pretty fast. I think the only thing i would change is to upgrade the 5400RPM drive to a 7200RPM drive and i think it will go much faster. So far i am very happy with it and since the mini it a stepping stone for me into the Apple world i may even get an iMac at some later time if i feel the need. Plus having the Intel chip doesnt hurt so i can dual boot if needed.

Let us know what you end up with.
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Aptmunich

 
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Quote:
.iMac much faster than equiv-spec Macbook Pro laptop. Suspect wait-times related to drives more than actual internal processing speed,
You can order the Macbook Pro with a 7200rpm drive as well, which would make them identical to the iMac, spec-wise.
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asolo

 
Member Since: May 30, 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aptmunich
You can order the Macbook Pro with a 7200rpm drive as well, which would make them identical to the iMac, spec-wise.
Thanks for this advice. I'm thinking my "test" was likely with a 15" Macbook Pro model with slower optical drive and slower hard-drive and I may not have paid sufficient attention in my comparison to the iMac which had faster drives. Thinking maybe I'll return to the store and see if they have an upscale Macbook Pro model available for re-examination. Interesting.

Do you have opinion about reliability of Macbook Pro compared to iMac? I know from my own and friends' PC experience that PC laptops tend to be slower and not very durable.
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