switcher's look back (2 month review) ***long***

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Well it's been 2 months since I got my first mac (last apple was an apple IIc), so I thought I would do a little look back at why I switched, and how it went.

I decided in Oct 06 that I wanted to get a Mac, I switched for the same reasons as most, viruses and other problems with Windows. I also was bored with windows and wanted to try something new. I started looking at all the different models. I choose the iMac, because I wanted to play WoW, but didn't want/need all the power of a Mac pro. I also really love the look of the iMac. One of my complaints about Macs is that there is a big gap between models the Mini Mac is nice but there is no video card, and to get the video card in the iMac there is a nice jump in price. Same with the laptops I feel the price jump between the models is a bit much, but I don't run apple. I choose the 24" iMac, and was told by my wife that I was going to have to wait until after Christmas. I spent the time in between listening to a ton of apple podcasts (maccast, typical mac user, macworld, macbreak, and others). I choose to wait until after the keynote on Jan 9th since it was so close. There were no upgrades at Macworld so I ordered a 24" iMac with 2.16ghz, 2 gig ram, 256mb video card, and 500 gig hard drive.

I got my iMac in mid January, and I actually took photos of me unpacking it (seems to be a mac thing). I did order myself the spanish keyboard by mistake, but apple fixed it for free. I feel in love right about the time the startup tone dinged. I had no problems setting it up, but had to call apple for the missing garage band loops. I got .mac with it, and had a website up that night. I plugged in my digital camera, printer, and video camera without an issue and had made my first DVD within a week. I transfered all my files from my PC to the Mac with an external drive by following the Apple sites instructions. There was a short learning curve, but it only took about a week to get use to how things worked. I had a little problem with how you installed programs, but after I got use to it, and I prefer the way apple does it.

After a few weeks I started downloading new software. I found that I could play WMA files by downloading windows media player from Microsoft ( go figure). I also found adium which allowed me to chat with my MSN live using family. I got skype for video chat with windows users. Then it happened...I found Quicksilver this programs is everything you will ever need. I spent a lot of time watching various videos on how to use it, and really love how easy it makes using a Mac. I played with a ton of other software like rapido write, virtue desktops, app zapper, and super duper, there are too many to list.

Comparing Apple to Windows is hard, but I don't have many things I prefer about windows over mac, except apple's choice of a mouse (which you can change easy). For the most part if you can use a windows machine you will figure out a mac, and then after awhile you will prefer the Mac. I have found for the most part there is the same software available for the Mac as for windows (Microsoft Office, Firefox, Skype, Turbotax, and others. If there isn't the same software there is one like it (Internet Explorer vs. Safari, Outlook Express vs. Mail.app, TextEdit vs. Notepad). I found that in most cases I prefer the apple version to the MS version; in fact I can't think of a windows program I prefer to the apple version. Then we come to the iLife programs iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, Garageband, and IWeb. These are free with your new Mac, and are really great for the average user. Each does it's own task, but it is easy to move projects between them to get a great finished project. I had a website on .mac in about 30 mins, and a movie on a DVD in about 1 hour. I also found that home movies become about 200% more watch-able if you set them to music. I love the fact that all my photos go into one folder, and I can post and update my website with one click (for me .mac is worth it).

About two weeks ago I sold my PC, and with my tax returns I got MBP 15" 2.16ghz, 2 gigs ram, 128 video card, 120gig HD. I like having two computers, and I just had no need to fight with my windows machine, when I can do all I need on a Mac. After I set up the MBP I sync'd with .mac, and got all my e-mail, bookmarks, and contacts to my MBP. I wanted to try setting up a network which I had never done, and in about 5 mins I had it set up printer sharing, iTunes, and iPhoto sharing, and access to the other computer's files. I was really surprised at how easy it was I ran into a few snags, but I searched the help files and fixed it. I was also impressed with the MBP all the laptops I've had in the past were slower then a desktop, but the MBP is really a desktop replacement.

After 2 months I have to say I love Macs, and don't plan on returning to windows. There are people that should use windows (ie hardcore gamers, people who's job forces them to use windows apps), but for the rest of us e-mailer, web-surfers, digital photo takers, and typical computer users there really is no reason not to switch to Mac. I have found that I can get to what I want to do faster on a Mac then on windows machine, and that's what sold me. I'm more concerned about the content of the work I'm doing not what I'm using to do the work. I heard a good analogy about this; when you drink a cup of coffee you should be able to enjoy the coffee not the cup it's inside.
 
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Thanks for the detailed look back. Thanks to plenty of research, I also slowly have been figuring out various programs, software to d/l to help do things even easier, etc.

I haven't yet made my switch, but I'm working towards it. I have the strange feeling I'm going to be working on convincing my gf she should try the Mac when it's time to replace her pc, too.

Glad to hear that you're enjoying the new machine.
 
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I'm not at the 2 month mark yet or even close. I have had my MBP for about 6 days or so now and I am in love with it.

I don't miss Windows at all.
 
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imac 20" 216 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 1GBSDRAM, 250 GB hd, Airport Extreme, Bluetooth 2.0
Thanks Sachsr1 for such a well written recap of the last 2 months. You've had a great experience with your Mac and it about sums up my experience too except I'm going on 3 months with mine.
I've really adopted the Apple saying "it just works" as my introduction to those asking "how do you like it?"
After 3 months, I don't even compare anything to Windows anymore. I don't usually give it a thought!
Anyway, it's good to hear from another happy switcher. :D
 
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2 iMacs 17+20" 2.16GHz 2GB RAM 500MB HDD 256MB Graphic card. 60Gig 5th gen iPod with Video
Thanks for sharing this . I too switched in Oct 06 and haven't looked back. Many of your thoughts I have to say I have had too. I have since purchased a 17" iMac 2.0 GHz for my son.

Ps. A free app I love to use is Jumpcuthttp://jumpcut.sourceforge.net/I haven't tried Quicksilver at the moment
 
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iMac 21.5" Core i5 Quad - MacBook Pro i5 - 24" iMac c2d - Mac Mini c2d - iPad 2 - iPhone 5S - ATV3
I have had my 24" iMac for three months now, and I am delighted with it.
I had a few little niggles at first - due to a faulty machine, but after that - no problems. I like the look of the iMac, plus I like the whole un-clutteredness of the OS.
My one gripe is iMovie. For me, it is truly dreadful (ducks to avoid the stones) But I did not choose to buy an iMac on the strength of that, so I cannot complain. My partner, who is as computer literate as a toaster, can use it with no problems, so that must be a miracle. it's a great machine.
I still have my PC (although not used now) but I will not slag it off as during it's 6 years service it performed very well, but you know the feeling when you need something more....so I looked at Apple - and I am glad I did.

For thoses who keep looking at PC's, then Mac's, then back to PC's, then reading this Forum, then back to PC's............and so on, just as I did.......then take the plunge.


Cheers


Philip
 
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Yeah, I kept on saying I wanted a Macbook Pro as my next upgrade, but I figured why get another laptop, when all I have to do is max the RAM out on this iBook, and just buy an iMac. So that's what I'm doing. I'm just waiting until Leopard is free with the computer, and they release the new iMacs lol.
 
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I can see where people call some Mac users "snobs", there is a lot of windows bashing out there. I feel it's like a ex-smoker or a born again Christian. You have been on both sides of the fence, and you know how much better it really is. When people say, oh I don't wanna learn a new operating system, or they are scared because they don't know what button to click on to get on the web. I see people getting turned off of Mac's because someone says "your using windows that's stupid. We have been thru that and know how simple it is to make the switch. You really want people to just try it, and see how nice it is on the Mac.

I have a long time Mac using friend that I use to tease for using a Mac in the mid 90's. In my defense there wasn't a lot going right in the Mac camp back then, but now I think they are the system to use. You can own a Mac and run OS X or windows, you can surf the web without viruses or spyware, and use the windows side for what you you need to do on that platform. When we say that the Mac has no viruses they all say "that's because no one uses them". I say that may be true, but don't you think that some hacker would wanna be the one who made the first big Mac virus, wouldn't that be a big feather in your hacker cap. I also say that I don't have to run anti-virus or spyware programs, and they say "well what if there is a virus". I have a feeling if there is a virus I won't be the first one to get it:)
 
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Well I have a little update, and things are not as "rosey". I'll keep this post constructive, but I'm going to be honest. I've been having problems with both my iMac, and my MBP. I've had the MBP in to the genius bar 2 times (3rd time tomorrow), and the iMac is also going in for service.

I've had about 10 "kernel panics" on my MPB (fyi kernel panics sound cute, until they happen:p) I tried to verify the disk on the MBP and there was a disk error, so I tought that was it. I brought it in to the apple store (75 miles round trip), and they fixed the disk error, and when I got home it crashed a few more time. I brought it back again and after 2 hours in the apple store they did and "archive and install", and I brought it home. Well it's at it again, and this time they want to keep it for a few days to run "hardware tests". I'm going to push for a new machine. Other then the crashes it's been a great machine, and the best laptop I've ever owned/used.

Now on to the iMac...first off the day I got it I had to call apple support to find all the apple loops for garage band (no big deal, but a hassle). Then I was having random wireless drop outs, and called about 4 times to try to fix it, and learned how to "zap P ram(control+option+p+r on boot-up). I never could fix the wireless problem, until I bought the wireless N airport extreme (the easiest network I have ever set up). I also started having problems with the DVD/CD drive not working. When I started up iDVD it would say I couldn't burn DVD's, because I didn't have supported DVD drive. A zap of the "P ram fixed that, but it has come back a few times.

I bought the final cut express with the iMac, and have started to dive into it. I tried to launch the soundtrack program, but it crashes before it starts. I asked the last time I was at the genius bar, and they said delete the plist, and the cache, but it didn't work. I even went so far as to un/reinstall it. It still doesn't work. This part really made me mad I called apple support 4 days outside of the iMac's phone support, and told them I knew it was out of the 90 days, but that I had a MBP that was inside the 90 days and was wondering if they could help me. They quickly told me NO, and that if I wanted support I would have to uninstall it from the iMac, and install it on the MBP. If I called back with it on the MBP they could help. I understand that there are rules, but come on you have to use a little common sense.

Well needless to say I was going to call back and tell them that it was on my MBP, but then I tried to run ONYX on the iMac, and the disk now has an error, so I'm just going to bring it to the genius bar to have them take a look at it also. With all the small problems I want to have them see if there is a hardware problem.

I'm still happy with the apple OSX, but I'm concerned about the hardware, and now can only hope that apple fixes the problems.
 

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