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 Rockula's Mac v.s. PC quandry 
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Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2002 7:00 pm
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Post Rockula's Mac v.s. PC quandry
Back in 2004, I asked you guys which way to go, took the advice and bought a Mac Mini (because that's all I couuld afford)
Well, it worked out fairly OK but here are the problems I ran into
1- The Mac seems to make lots of decisions for you and has very vague ideas about your choices (no graphic EQ on Garageband?!?)
2- A vast majority of Mac users that I know have been complete elitist douchebags with absolutely no time and/or ehtusiasm to help me with my problems
ESPECIALLY THOSE FUCKESSES AT THE APPLE STORE!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sorry, you will have to make an appointment a few days in advence with a Mac "Genius" who will tell you things you already know instead of the things you need to know (i.e. qestions about things that don't involve buying new product)
Meanwhile, all the PC people I know have been gracious and understanding people who shrug and say "That's why I use a PC"

Here's what I need to do
I just got a windfall of $1000+
I want to buy a laptop to do music and video (and not to surf the internet for porn etc...), therefore, I can avoid most of the pitfalls of viruses etc....
The new 13"Mac book does not have firewire (which my vid camera uses) but the older style Macs do
I can get an older model for $1000 and will get all of the reliability of hardware with the unreliability of human-ware
Whereas, I can get a pretty powerful PC for $600 with the pitfalls of PC hardware problems but reliable people to advise me through said problems


All in all, it comes down to the fact that I have more ideas than knowledge
Most of my work is done off the computer, using it mostly for storage and communication (downloading , sharing etc....)
Therefore, I am less attracted to all the trendy shit Mac puts on their systems (fuck I-tunes) but leery of the problems PC users encounter

I am also able to wait until after the Christmas season in order to get more savings so I am not in a hurry
Thanks

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Sat Dec 06, 2008 6:49 pm
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I'm a Mac user because I'm an idiot about what it takes to keep computers running. Give me an "on" button and Creative Suite and I'm a happy little latte-sippin', art-critiquing twit.
Which computer you get depends on what kind of work you want to do on it. You say you do mostly storage and communication; I'd recommend a PC and then use the money you save to buy good anti-virus software. Maintain your files, filter your e-mail and vigilantly clear out cookies and things and you could probably avoid most of the ick that's out there.

But what would I know? I use a Mac. ;)

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Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:13 pm
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The Mac is all about standards and consistency and ease-of-use. All the software for it generally follows the same conventions, since it's written by Apple. This requires less thinking, less trial-and-error, and less adapting to a bunch of random programmer's ideas of "usability". If you have a problem with any of the tools, you pay the $300 a year (or whatever it is now) and call one 1-800 number to get help.

The PC is the opposite. It's all about choices. For anything you want to do, there WILL be software available on the PC to DO that. But you have to find it, hiding somewhere on the internet. Then you have to install and try all 3 or 20 different choices to see which one works the best for you. Often there will be one choice that does one thing great but is missing a feature, so you have to learn TWO tools to get everything done. The menus, keybindings, and button layouts will probably be wildly different between the two. They may or may not support drag&drop. You want help or support for those tools? You get to go look for their support forum, hiding somewhere on the internet.


Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:37 pm
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I have never been good at solving computer problems (both hardware/software)
95% of the time, I get to a point where I can no longer overcome my problem with trial and error
That is when someone has to help me in person
I can't read manuals or successfully recieve help on-line or over the phone
It usually comes down to something minor but extremely important (like the wrong file type etc...)
Once I get over the problem, I can keep going for a while until another one pops up
So
I have 2 computer programmers in the family as well as a bunch of PC friends
Mac users, well, I have already told you about them

I am also more involved in production of my material before I use a computer (mixing/EQing tracks etc...) so I don't intend to use my computer as an instrument, more as a pre-performance tool for sharing/storing data

I might use the computer as a operformance tool in the future but i will have to become much more savvy before I attempt that

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Sat Dec 06, 2008 8:15 pm
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Garageband has a graphic EQ. But, if you're looking for pro-audio, I'd get something a little better than Garageband. It's fun and all, but it's def. got it's limitations. Also, new MacBooks don't have firewire? That just seems odd. Can someone verify? I'm lazy.

Get what you're used to. If you grew up on PC's, you should probably get one of those. My 2 cents. I use both, but prefer Mac.

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Mon Dec 08, 2008 12:07 pm
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i use a mac for porn and a pc for music.

i'm messed up.

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Mon Dec 08, 2008 12:16 pm
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That's not very PC!
Haw Haw Haw!

I have only used Garageband and I-movie because that's what is loaded on my Mac Mini
I don't wanna jinx it, but i think I might have a 2nd band member soon and he's the I.T. guy for his company, so I hope to have him take care of everything
Once I get this going, it means that I can start producting the Theater for the Insane again

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Mon Dec 08, 2008 12:44 pm
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Post 
Rock-

You are a Mac guy.

That's the short answer. Now for the long answer...

There is a lot of good advice in all of these posts and I agree with almost all of it. The stuff about the 'options' a PC offers is very true. The stuff about the Mac stuff being consistant is very true. Knowing you as I do I suspect you will like the consistancy and reliability of the Mac approach better than the PC world.

For starters, the Mac operating system is superior to Windows Vista in just about every way. I use both platforms every day, and I've found the Mac OS is a huge step up from Vista. I still prefer Windows XP over Vista, despite what Microsoft is trying to have people believe. Vista is garbage.

You are the sort of guy who says 'I just want it to work' or 'I just want to be able to do <insert>'. Those people love Macs because they simplify the interface and make things generally pretty easy to accomplish. Sometimes that comes at the expense of some higher functionality, but people that want it to 'just work' don't generally go that deep into it anyway.

Garageband is an entry-level user-friendly music studio package. It's not meant to be professional. It's meant to be sort of Fisher Price and simple to screw around with, have fun, and make music for the average Joe. It accomplishes that. There are lots of recording/studio packages available for Mac and PC that you can use which will do professional work if you want to go that route. You can probably accomplish 95% of what you are setting out to do in Garageband- yet another reason why I think you're a Mac guy.

The only problem with these arguments is the cost factor. You're a Mac guy on a PC budget. Macs are EXPENSIVE. You're looking at spending just shy of $2000 on a proper Mac notebook setup. For the same thing in PCville, you're talking about under $1000 most likely. There are lots of PC notebooks that are pretty good for under a grand. Not so with Mac. Keep in mind you'll need software for the PC as it won't come with it the way Garageband does- but there are so many options in PC software that you can hit any price point you want (or pirate it).

That being said, I still recommend Mac for you. You can get a decent Mac notebook and even buy the extended warranty on it (worth it since you'll be gigging with it and using it so much) and come in under $2000. If you buy a decent PC notebook and then buy some good recording/virtual studio stuff for it you'll spend less but it won't be as intuitive, reliable, or fast as a Mac. You might even get stuck with Vista *gasp!*.

The long and short is if you can afford it, go for the Mac. If not, PC is a very cost-effective option and it sounds like you've got a lot of friends you can tap for information/help with it so it's hard to put a pricetag on that.

~Ether~

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Mon Dec 08, 2008 4:54 pm
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nothin wrong with refurb units.

(says a continuation engineering guy...)

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Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:14 pm
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My sister was creating a PC online and one of the options was a "windows vista downgrade"
Funny that you should chose to have them retro-fit your operating system

Ether's comments hit the nail on the head in general
However, I have a vast amount of people around me who can advise me on the PC problems whereas there are virtually no Mac users who will take the time to help me

Maybe someday I will have a super Mac but I think that $700 v.s. $2000 is the biggest question
After all, I haven't been to the dentist in 20 years and iI'd like to throw some money at that too

So far, I am leaning towards PC

btw
Has anyone else had as shitty of a time trying to get people at the Apple store to help them as I did?

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Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:57 pm
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Macs are very intuitive. People can figure out how to do most things on them without having to "tinker" much, and without even needing to be very <i>smart</i>.

PC's with all their hardware and OS and software options are perfectly suited for "tinkerers". You're not a tinkerer. You're doing stuff that's outside the norm, and it's probably "experimental", but you KNOW what you're trying to do. "Tinkerers" are people who enjoy fiddling around with stuff just to see what it CAN do, without any purpose or goal in mind.

The ideal situation for you is to team-up with a tinkerer. They'll set up a cheap PC, try a dozen different software packages, tinker around with them, and become familiar enough with all of them so that when YOU come along and say "I wanna do _this_", they'll be able to say "Ah! Tool#1 can be used to do this part, then export it in format XYZ and use Tool#2 to do that other thing to it", and actually sit down and demonstrate the steps.

You're a smart guy; you'll see it in action once or twice and be able to do it yourself, even if the process isn't <i>remotely</i> intuitive. You don't need big colorful icons and wizards to walk you through every mouse click every time. But you're not the patient tinkerin'-for-its-own-sake type either. So if you can round up a buddy to do that, who can benefit from YOUR skills (because you can't pay enough for somebody to tinker and tutor just for YOUR purposes), that would be perfect, and a cheap PC would work out fine.


Mon Dec 08, 2008 7:01 pm
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You pretty much summed up my situation in a nutshell
First, let me give you an example of what I have been doing on my Mac
<object><param></param><param></param><param></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/FzC73nYKc3E&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

There's more at
http://www.youtube.com/user/Rockulaproductions

Anyways
I don't wanna jinx it, but I think I may just have found said co-conspiritor
He's an I.T. guy for his company and he's got lots of ideas (both nefarious and on the level) about the computer
Plus, he's just as bitter and cynical about things as I am

You are correct in that I can learn just about anything if you personally teach it to me (except math dammit)
I did that video stuff after watching Kidwell edit an Autonomy video 4 years ago
The PC way seems to be the most muscle for the buck
Besides, the "mac or Pc" situation is starting to look like I can use both
Might as well use all the equipment I have

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Thu Dec 11, 2008 2:35 pm
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