PC Laptop or MacBook

#1
Ok. Mrs I needs a new laptop. Hers has given up the ghost.

Now then, I think of myself as no slouch when it comes to PC's. I am an IM in the RAF, I build my own and like to tinker. So, I can find my way around NT4, 2K and XP, and am slowly learning about Vista.

My problem is that Mrs I wants to defect and get a MacBook!!!!

http://www.apple.com/uk/macbook/

All her feminine logic tells her that "It looks nice!".

OK, I cannot argue the design part, Mac have always looked good, but I am somewhat concerned about software availablity (I have lots and lots for PC...all legit...honest!), and finding my way around the OS, as I really, honestly have only touched Mac OS once or twice in the past.....I still cannot get my head around the fact that there is only one mouse button ffs!

As a complete Mac novice, what should I know. Do I try to persuade her to stick with what we know?

I know that the new MacBooks can run Windows as they have Intel chips. How much of a pain is it to dual boot them?
 
#2
Actually the mighty mouse has a few buttons built into its design.
If you look at Apple home page, all software games and compatible accessories are shown with reviews.


PS check out the ratio of viruses to Mac vs PC
 
#3
With the new Intel chip Macbooks you have a few options for running windows... with Bootcamp you actually need to restart the machine however with Parallels you can just swap between the two.

I know of a few PC guys who have switched and would never go back...!

I've used MAcs for 12 years and only fairly recently had to start using a PC and I found it very frustrating - the beauty of Mac is the same company design both the OS ( which MSoft tried and failed to copy with Vista ) and the hardware, so it just, works!
 
#4
It can be expensive to feed and care for a Mac. It's hard to find drivers online for a lot of accessories; as you've observed, a lot of software simply doesn't come in Mac versions (too small a market?) and good luck finding anyone outside of London to repair it.

But I love mine. OS is simplicity itself to use, it basically steers itself, the virus problem is negligible, and it's fantastic for creative or graphic work. Oh, and the customer service is up to my American standards. :wink:

If she just wants it because it looks pretty, but doesn't know the difference, you're better off getting her something less branded but cheaper to run and fix. And I say this as a Mac devotee. But they are really nice to have!
 
#5
Use my laptop for both work and play and switched from PC to Apple Air a couple of months back - took a little time to get used to the Mac os, but wouldn't go back now.

The combined system of OS and hardware it is stunningly stable, in all my learning and loading programmes etc it has never crashed or frozen. Sadly cant say that of the Dell and XP.

Have parallels installed for the couple of XP programmes that dont have mac equivalents.

Highly recommend the "Missing Manual" book "Switching to the Mac" was a simple way of learning the differences.

Must warn you though, you are likely to end up buying two macs, because before long you'll be fighting over it if you only have one!
 
#6
I have been using pc's since my first IBM PC-AT in 1985. DOS, then Windows..... etc.

A couple of years ago my laptop died and I needed a new one in a hurry due to an influx of consulting work on the side from my real job. Due to an affiliation with Harvard I can get great prices on computers so I trotted down to the Harvard IT store. Windows machines were backordered and Mac's were in stock. I called my 27 year old godson who is the CTO of a software firm. He immediately told me to get the Mac. I got a G5 Powerbook and I love it. No Intel chip but why do I need Windows when I have something that boots faster, does not crash, runs all the software I need. I use MS Office for Mac and Firefox and Safari browsers plus Quicken for Mac. . I am not a comuter expert but was able to set up my wireless router to cable modem with no calls to tech support.

As work I continue to use Windows as I have to use some US govt software that is Windows specific.

Buy the girl a Mac. Please do not use her Mac as if you do you will want to junk all of your windows stuff and get another Mac (or get in constant fights over access to her mac)
 
#7
I have a Acer Vista laptop and if i could make the decision again i would save another few hundred quid and get the Mac Book....
A friend has one and i am well jealous.
 
#8
Well this is easy. I use both.

In the event of fire I will pick my daughter up with one hand and my mac with the other. I'll go back for the wife if there is time.

Does that answer your question ?
 
#9
You know, I thought that this would be quite easy. I really belived that I would hear a lot of stick for the Mac and everyone would recommend the PC for software availablity etc.

In fact it's very much the other way round.

I think the thing that is starting to convince me apart from statements like that made by Pocoyo, is the fact that I can, if needed boot into XP, so we can still use the old software if we need.

Thanks for the gen guys....please keep it coming though...the more gen I have be better decision I can make...although it is starting to look like the argument has been won!
 
#10
Moved over to Mac last year, wouldn't dream of going back, wouldn't even consider it!

So much easier to use, so much easier to find things, Ilife package gives you everything you'll ever need for home use, Iphoto is just brilliant for keeping your pics. - I even went over to Pages rather than Office, and have only had two or three problems with that (on proforma paperwork, losing borders etc.) - so would say get Office if you need it for work.

Seriously, far nicer to use - have not ever been in need of software, no problems with drivers, they are telling the truth when they say "it just works"

I promise you that once you've gone over to the dark side (and after you've figured out how to do the # sign) you will not go back!

if you can swing an educational discount, then you're back in the same price range as a PC again - you must know someone who works at a school or has teenage kids off to college!
 
#11
Well for hardware specs you could probably get a much better laptop than you could a macbook. Oh and whatever you do, stay the hell away from the macbook air. No optical drive, you can't change the battery and you've only got one USB port. Oh and dont forget-no ethernet port, so you can't get into that wireless router to config it so you can use the Internet. Well to everyone using a macbook out there enjoy your slideshows, and I'll enjoy right clicking :twisted:
 
R

rogermellie

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#12
I use macs at work and to be honest they just work no problems no blue screens etc.
If i had the money i would throw my pc away and get a mac, they just really are the dogs testicles!
Looking at what people have posted i think your'e gonna get a mac!
 
#13
tothepubandbeyond said:
Well for hardware specs you could probably get a much better laptop than you could a macbook. Oh and whatever you do, stay the hell away from the macbook air. No optical drive, you can't change the battery and you've only got one USB port. Oh and dont forget-no ethernet port, so you can't get into that wireless router to config it so you can use the Internet. Well to everyone using a macbook out there enjoy your slideshows, and I'll enjoy right clicking :twisted:
I'd have to agree. Macbook air really only compliments a desktop Mac.
 
#14
tothepubandbeyond said:
Well for hardware specs you could probably get a much better laptop than you could a macbook.
Hmm, but the counter argument would be that you need a higher spec to run the fat, slow, cumbersome & inefficient software written by MS

tothepubandbeyond said:
Oh and whatever you do, stay the hell away from the macbook air. No optical drive, you can't change the battery and you've only got one USB port. Oh and dont forget-no ethernet port, so you can't get into that wireless router to config it so you can use the Internet.
I would like to think that no-one would be foolish enough to own a macbook air as their only computer!

tothepubandbeyond said:
Well to everyone using a macbook out there enjoy your slideshows, and I'll enjoy right clicking :twisted:
ah, but we've got a magic apple button to play with!
 
#15
Just to add.

I had exactly this conversation with the good lord flashy last week. If you play lots of games and have heaps of expensive windows apps then you should stick with a pc.

Generally speaking it will be difficult to find someone who owns a Mac that didn't start out with a PC, logically this means you get an opinion of someone who has used both and this is quite important. I think I have only ever met one Mac user that decided to go back to a PC, purely because of gaming. A lot of people are quick to rubbish Macs but from my experience they have never had one, or at best they have had a quick go on one. It isn't the same OS and operates very differently, it takes a bit of getting used to but is very intuitive and you'll never need to open a manual to learn.

That's my ten pence worth.
 
#16
I have currently sat on my offfice desk a MacBook Pro (a work toy as several members of staff have them and I needed one to support them) with OS X Leopard, many varied Dell laptops running XP Pro, a smattering of the Asus EeePC in various configurations and last but not least my own Lenovo (IBM) ThinkPad T60.
The MacBook Pro is very well specced with 4GB RAM and a 200GB hard drive should be a great performer, but after almsot a years use it stil falls wel below the standard I would be happy with for a laptop. It plods...a lot. And just to shatter a few Mac fanboy myths it crashes and hangs just as much as Windows (it just does it 'nicer'). They also lack a certain 'flexibilty' that Windows based computers have in buckets i.e. software that does what you want for a specialised task.
My personal preference would now be to phone a company like these: http://ict-direct.co.uk/index.htm and ask them what they have in stock as much is not listed on the site. Then stick the latest distro of Ubuntu Linux (Hardy Heron 8.04) on it. I have in the past appreciated Linux as a server OS, but never before as a consumer product. I have been using it for 2 weeks now and have not yet found it lacking in any respect. Need software? Simple go to the 'Add\Remove Programs' applet and download it for free. This includes games (3D Shooters etc), office apps, programming and virtually everything else.
Anyway, back to my original point. Macs are a bit like a chav car. it's only when you get closer you realise that beneath all the bling it has drum brakes on the rear and the tinted windows have air bubbles on the film covering.
 
#17
I'm a self confessed Apple whore and so is my brother who runs his own IT Company. The parents have got a 24" IMac and they've got no problems using it which says a lot about its simplicity and ease of use.

I've got a macbook running 2gb of ram and nothing taxes it. I've got parallels for running software on XP from the Open Uni but that's the only time I boot it up to be honest. I've got MS Office for Mac and there are no compatibility problems. You can get MSN Messenger for Mac but the only downside is that it can crash quite often and doesn't support the built in webcam.

If you want to watch dvds, surf t'internet, play music, edit phots and create movies, then get a mac.

If you want to play games, then get a PC or alternatively just buy a Wii/PS3/Xbox 360 because macs don't do gaming. Mind you, neither do I so I'm not really bothered.

I've got a T-Mobile mobile broadband usb stick and that works flawlessly with OS X.

Yes they are expensive but you do get jealous looks off people when they see it :D

Vista is about 3 years behind OS X in terms of development and the security on OS X is top notch compared to Windows-my background is IT Security so I'm fairly up to speed on this. Of course, there will always be people who slate mac and that's their choice. I've found that a lot of them have never used a mac more than clicking on a display mac in the Apple store so I tend to ignore them.
 
#18
Pocoyo said:
Generally speaking it will be difficult to find someone who owns a Mac that didn't start out with a PC, logically this means you get an opinion of someone who has used both and this is quite important. I think I have only ever met one Mac user that decided to go back to a PC, purely because of gaming. A lot of people are quick to rubbish Macs but from my experience they have never had one, or at best they have had a quick go on one.
That would be me. I started computer classes when they were putting Macintosh Classics into the California schools as part of their teaching initiatives. And when I left high school and went to work, it was in a design-based industry that has always run on Mac. Short of a mistake my dad made with a Dell, I've almost literally always been a Mac user.

I can use PCs just fine; I have to use them at work now. But it feels clunky and scattered; plus, if I don't know the precise name and location of the file I'm looking for on the server or hard drive, I can't find it. And forget about graphics software.

So given my druthers, I'd never choose to go to PC. I'm not a gamer or programmer, though, so it might be different if I was.
 
#19
labrat said:
tothepubandbeyond said:
Well for hardware specs you could probably get a much better laptop than you could a macbook.
Hmm, but the counter argument would be that you need a higher spec to run the fat, slow, cumbersome & inefficient software written by MS
My counter argument to that: At least I dont need to spend over a grand to get a decent laptop. At least I don't get shafted by Steve Jobs every time my hardware gets dated. At least if my webcam breaks I don't need to send off the entire computer to get it fixed. You think Microsoft is bad for it's monopoly on software, well better than apple having a monopoly on software and the hardware build.
 
#20
I think your comment about hardware getting dated is a bit wide of the mark - best mate has been running his G4 ibook since 2003, so has had five years use out of it on panther and tiger, but its not specced enough for Leopard, still runs fine on tiger though!

Not many five year old laptops that would take vista either, so I'd say thats horses for courses!
 

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