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Forums: General Discussion
Created on: 09/07/11 10:35 PM Views: 1663 Replies: 14
Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 10:35 PM

I am thinking of getting a new computer, and was wondering if anyone has strong points on a PC or IMAC.
I have always had a PC, but the IMAC looks pretty good. Just wondering if someone thinks one is better than the other. Is there a big learning curve on switching from one to the other?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:02 PM - Response #1

Made the move from PC to MAC 10 years ago and it was the best thing for me. I do a lot of Photo work and Medical Imaging and the MAC platform is more effective and friendly. I am in the process of moving Lion into my program and so far so good. Teaching others to use MAC is very easy and setting up a system for someone is not very hard. The iPad has made the MAC much more popular and the iPhone all link together for better connection and moving files between systems. Good Luck

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:07 PM - Response #2

Just completed our reunion for over 400 guests - all I can say is my mac was fast and efficient through the whole CC process.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:13 PM - Response #3

I switched from PC to a Mac mini 6 years ago when we retired. Upgraded to a new Mac mini last year. Could never go back to a PC. My husband still uses a PC. Rarely I need it to do something I can't do on the Mac. I also use an iPhone and do lots of work with photos. Have had no issues with class creator and mac.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:14 PM - Response #4

Hi Gary,
You'll probably get views all over the "map" with this inquiry. I was a double agent: PCs in the office and, since my wife was in education, we had the latter at home. It kind of boils down to what you're comfortable with in terms of the apps you use most often. Gamers probably buy more PCs while creative professionals probably buy more Macs; however, in the age of internet communication it probably doesn't matter.
If you haven't already seen it, you might want to check: ( an interesting article that appeared last month on ZDnet. I've been highly satisfied with Mac hardware and products from the Apple store. I'm less satisfied with 3rd part apps, but they're still adequate for my needs.
If support matters to you, do visit an Apple retail store and see what they offer. When none are close, I have found Mac User Groups to be extremely helpful.
Good luck.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:14 PM - Response #5

After YEARS in the PC world...back to the DOS days...I finally converted to Mac several years ago with a MacBook. My PC died a horrible death last Fall, so bought an iMac and wonder why I waited so long!!! Good luck...I hear, however, that if you are a gamer, you might want to do more research re: PC vs. MAC.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:16 PM - Response #6

I started using Macs while teaching as all the teachers were given a MacBook Pro laptop. I love my Mac and would recommend one to anyone. Go to your nearest Apple Store and let them demonstrate everything a Mac can do...they are awesome! And yes, compatible to the IPhone and IPad..another advantage. They are a little more expensive than some PC's but you get so much more for your money.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:31 PM - Response #7

It doesn't matter what you buy as long as you are comfortable with your decision. Most of all consider the software you are using now and will it be compatable with your new operating system. Consider all the files, documents and programs because as certain as tomorrow being daylight something won't work!!!! You may want a Tablet or something with a touch screen. Make sure it is going to do "What You Want" and not some salesmans idea. Good Luck in your decision.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 11:47 PM - Response #8

The genius bar at the apple store and online AppleCare are amazing. Don't buy without AppleCare especially as a new user. The help they offer with almost no wait time is phenomenal. As a new Mac user it is essential. No matter what you want to do they will help you. I have Microsoft Word, Excel & PowerPoint for mac so you don't need to give that up either.

As to question you asked about learning curve it was small but there. I continued to do things the hard way ie the old way because I didn't realize there was a new easy Mac way. One to one if you are near an apple store would be helpful but I learned eventually by trial and error and calls to apple care. Could never go back.

Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 1:33 AM - Response #9

I switched over to the dark side after being a dedicated PC user. I had a lot of problems with my Dell Computer and the horrible service they offered to me. So after numerous visits to the Apple store, I purchased an IMAC. I absolutely love it!! There is a learning curve and I signed up for the training that Apple offered to help me. I am still in learning mode and truly have not unleashed all the capabilities of owning an IMAC. I also purchased the software to run windows based programs on my IMAC as my income tax software does not run on a MAC. Still trying to master that whole thing. The IMAC is awesome.

Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 1:47 AM - Response #10

Apple products do have nice style. Some PC products have a nice style, but one has to look around in specialty stores. Is style (which always gets old) more important than performance? This is much like buying a car.

I don't know what you know about hardware specs, but there lies the key. The only way to tell to tell one computer from another is knowing exactly what one is buying. Applies to either one.

Since a Mac and a PC are now based the SAME hardware platform, knowing the differences for what looks like the same system becomes the key to a dynamite system vs a "it's ok".

Some main factors are (more or less):

Processor - I7-990X (or closest to whatever budget allows),
Graphics card - discrete high end separate much harder to list
Memory - 8GB minimum, plus know installed vs maximum memory possible. Windows 7 professional and above can use 192GB. (IOW, get Windows 7 professional) - don't know MAC max.
Disk Drive - get a 7200 min, prefer 10,000 RPM drive - 1 TB (or more).
Monitor - at least 24 inch (another spec driven area). 1920x1080 (HD res) or better.

A lessor factor is the power supply. If you do not have a large enough power supply, it can limit future expansion since high end video cards can be power hungry (of course you can upgrade later.)

The graphics cards is a significant contributor to performance for games, image editing and now browsers. PCs have more choices because of driver support. A high end graphics card can cost as much as a complete low-end PC.

It's also easy to upgrade a PC later because of the huge number of choices. This is also true for software. So starting with a medium card and deciding you want the best is not a big deal for a PC. Sometimes it is for a Mac.

Hardly anyone ventures outside of email, some simple word processing and for ones here some web editing. Not very demanding tasks. Games are actually the most demanding.

There's always a learning curve.

So the above more a breakdown of objective criteria vs just looks. It's easiest to just buy some package, however, be sure you know what the parts are in case you want to upgrade and know what you can upgrade either PC or MAC.

The only objective way to do this is to list same specs and compare the cost for exactly the same parts. Any money left over can be used to upgrade one of them.

You can never have a machine that is too fastIdea

For kicks, here's a $12,000 PC LINK Gives you an idea of what I mean about high end part prices.

Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 9:49 PM - Response #11

WOW, what a great response,I see I have some homework to do. I just live about 4 miles from an Apple Store.
I do photography and video work for the University of Wisconsin Marching Band, I have thousand of pictures, and we are just getting into HD Video of our Pre-Game and Halftime Shows.
Most of my co-workers have an iMAC, and said I should check into for my use, as they are great for making movies.
Would it make sense to keep my PC for docs, Word, Excel, and Access and use the iMAC for photos and videos?
Thanks again to everyone for their reply.

Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 9:56 PM - Response #12

You might be able to cut a deal for MS Office Professional so you can keep all the programs on your IMac. You won't be happy with (2) machines. Be sure to get as much Memory as you can if you use a lot of photos, movies and other memory hogs. There is never enough memory especially with the new programs that come out every year. Happy Computing.

Edited 09/08/11 9:59 PM
Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 10:29 PM - Response #13

Originally some image software was made only for the Mac. Then that reputation "stuck" and people get a bit prejudicedCool The reality is that there is little difference between the two now since high end software (e.g. Adobe) is the same for video or image editing.

The objective is to just ask: which one offers the most memory and the best video card at your price point (using same processor). You also should get multiple hard drives, at least two at 1TB each for video work.

The brunt of the work is already done by the recording device - not a computer. Editing is actually a pretty simple task today on either - with the right hardware and software.

What used to be awkward 2 years ago is now easily handled. However, the processor is the one thing that should be the best right up front. Starting price for your system is around $2000.

In a school environment you can get really a really good price for many products - although you probably know that.

IOW, it's not a PC vs MAC at all. It's which one gives you the hardware to do the job right. The rest is tomaytoe, tomahtoe.

Saturday, September 10, 2011 at 10:24 PM - Response #14

Update - talked to some people that do this stuff way more than I do:

There are some excellent video/image editing software suites by Apple that are only for the MAC. For example Apple Final Cut Pro most used professionally, Apple iPhoto and Apple iLife .

It looks like the Final Cut prior version is preferred over new because some features were deleted or did not work correctly. Price is high for consumer $299 (but cheap compared to what it used to cost). Final Cut also supports some special hardware accessories.

Check Apple store and see if they have a working version to evaluate. Then compare to this LINK list).

Windows 7 comes with basic video editing. It is very coarse in frame selection and clunky. It did do a good job of converting formats that one program did not support to a supported format.

Apple may have same basic free editing software on new machines. Maybe someone can comment on that.

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