What is a good beginning Mac?

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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:03 am

Deanjo wrote:
The Egg wrote:If you want the most bang for your buck, get something used, possibly a Mac with some sort of mild issues (assuming you're handy enough to resolve them). Mac users are typically not handy at all, and often just buy a new computer rather than deal with it.


I actually beg to differ on that. I find most Mac users are more capable fixing their issues than the typical PC guy.

Case in point, a few years ago someone handed me an Intel-based iMac for nothing. The guy was having problems and didn't want to deal with it or pay Apple support to diagnose/repair it. Turned out to be a dying hard drive (which was a bi**h to replace), but after that worked flawlessly. I did a bit of messing around with the OS (Snow Leopard), and then eventually sold it. I imagine there are plenty of other Mac users who are frustrated with a mild issue and in the same boat as him.



Care to guess how many PC's I have received over the years because the user did not want to have to reinstall Windows or replace a drive?


I am not picking sides Deanjo but there are way way more PC's out there then Macs buy a whole lot. Last I checked you can not build your own Mac like you can a PC.....you can on buy a Pre built Mac. This does not include Hackintoshes, but the vast majority of them are built by PC builders.
I think Most of the Mac people who can repair there own machines are previously PC owners who switch to Mac's out of necessity.
Also you have to factor in price since grandma on her fixed income can not afford a Mac but can afford a PC. Just a example.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:14 am

Arvald wrote:Actually the process is just walk into a apple reseller (yes those still exist) and drop the $30 on the latest OSX.
You can acquire it legally without piracy
The running of the system on non Apple hardware on the other hand is the license violation in the USA and a few other countries. Apple is one of those companies whose EULAs violate laws in many countries.


Apple hasn't hasn't sold or created physical media since 10.7.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:17 am

Buub wrote:
geekl33tgamer wrote:
riviera74 wrote:If anyone here were to suggest a Mac over a PC for anything

Can I stop you there? I wouldn't take a Mac over a Pc for anything at all. I was forced to use one for a while at work on a client's project (2013 MPB 13", non-retina). Sure it felt nice, and I'm not so inept I couldn't learn OSX.

But I had some interesting compatibility problems with it trying to co-exist (and share files) between it and my PC's. It also needed very expensive software to replace windows equivalents. It was also wildly overpriced and under-spec for the money - but that's no shock neither.

Unless there's a killer software product you need that is only on OSX, I don't really see the appeal. Sorry, I was glad to give mine back.

Can I stop you there?

Not trying to start a flamewar here, but these are your experiences.

I wouldn't buy another PC, myself. And I explicitly requested a Mac for my work computer, at my third company in a row. Because it Just Works Better. IMHO of course. (And just to forestall the fanboy assertion, I've been building my own Windows PCs for decades, so I've got feet firmly wet in both camps.)


The one thing I'll say about Macs is that they're built nice. The hardware just seems well put together. Solid. Tight. No question about it; compared to other brands, Mac devices are built better.

But as far as the OS goes, and how they "work" - well, let's just say we disagree. I really don't see the benefits, to be honest. The OS is nice looking, and rock-solid in terms of stability. But there is really nothing I've ever seen that makes me go "Yeah, I wish Windows could do that..."

Software isn't nearly as limited as it used to be; but there are still plenty of compatibility issues. We have a handful of Mac users in our company, and we're always having to deal with network issues, problems connecting to displays in conference rooms, issues with software not working as expected, inability to find a Mac version of things, etc.

On the other hand, there really isn't anything you can do, or even do better, on a Mac versus a PC. Years ago, you could make the argument that Macs were better for graphic design, or sound engineering, but even that isn't the case anymore. They're not better at crunching numbers. There is really no niche, business or entertainment, where anyone can truthfully say "You need Mac to do that."

So it all comes down to aesthetics; the look and feel of the hardware and the OS. And, if those things are important enough for you to pay the premium, then more power to you. But anything more than that is wishful thinking.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:42 am

Lot of great responses here. Am I the only person who noticed that the OP seems to have disappeared from the thread?

He really got people wound up and then is MIA? Maybe somebody should PM him/her?
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 2:24 pm

Deanjo wrote:
Arvald wrote:Actually the process is just walk into a apple reseller (yes those still exist) and drop the $30 on the latest OSX.
You can acquire it legally without piracy
The running of the system on non Apple hardware on the other hand is the license violation in the USA and a few other countries. Apple is one of those companies whose EULAs violate laws in many countries.


Apple hasn't hasn't sold or created physical media since 10.7.

So?
10.7 would have been current till July 2012 (when 10.8 came out)
you think brick and mortar stores would not still have copies? but that sounds about right for the last time I went into an Apple reseller.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:20 pm

Psystar's case is different in that:

1.) They were modifying the operating system
2.) They were selling the operating system pre-installed

That was all in the Snow Leopard and previous era. Nobody is buying or selling now.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:50 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:Psystar's case is different in that:

1.) They were modifying the operating system

Which is still done with hackintoshes. Also, Psystar also was not so much modifying the software. They were providing a specialized EFI to fake a mac and to make it appear as legitimate one to OSX

2.) They were selling the operating system pre-installed

That was all in the Snow Leopard and previous era. Nobody is buying or selling now.


The DMCA act doesn't care if it was sold or not.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:03 pm

If you're modifying system files with a hackintosh you're doing it wrong. Nobody's circumventing anything modding the OS. FakeSMC loads a profile into memory so that things like SpeedStep work correctly.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:37 pm

Deanjo wrote:The DMCA act doesn't care if it was sold or not.


We get it, Deanjo. Either report the thread to a mod or stop derailing it.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:52 pm

I had to double check the mod forums. I was pretty sure we discussed this before and had already collectively come to a conclusion.

Virtualizing OS X or using a OS X Hackintosh does not cross over the intent of rule #1 here on these forums.

Pirating OS X on the other hand would cross the intent of rule #1 on these forums. So long as hackintosh or virtualization suggestions/tips include a way to buy OS X then we leave the contractual dispute over use of OS X in that context between Apple and the individual.

In other words we will allow the forum guests to present all three options (cheap mac, virtualization, hackintosh) to the opening post so long as the options include buying a copy of OS X.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 6:12 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:
In other words we will allow the forum guests to present all three options (cheap mac, virtualization, hackintosh) to the opening post so long as the options include buying a copy of OS X.


So if someone has bought their DVD/Bluray you would allow talk of ripping and methods?

http://definitions.uslegal.com/s/software-piracy/


Software piracy is the unauthorized copying/distribution of software. Most retail programs are licensed for use at just one computer site or for use by only one user at any time. Purchasing software means that you are actually purchasing a license to use the software. That license defines how you may lawfully use that software. Any use of the software beyond the scope of the license, would be a violation of the license and possibly, copyright law. You are allowed to make copies of the program for backup purposes, but it is against the law to give copies to friends and colleagues.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 6:55 pm

Nope.

Not going to argue semantics either.

http://techreport.com/blog/18434/buildi ... ring-storm
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:40 pm

Image

(sorry, couldn't resist)
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:00 pm

Dude. That is awesome.

So anyway - Hackintosh. That's the beginner's Mac.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:10 pm

If you want to make an enormous unsupportable assumption about the potential user's computer skills and patience, I suppose. Or those of the cultist who's trying to convert people.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:47 pm

Neutronbeam wrote:Lot of great responses here. Am I the only person who noticed that the OP seems to have disappeared from the thread?

He really got people wound up and then is MIA? Maybe somebody should PM him/her?


No need to worry about that. I asked the original question because I went to an Apple store and asked the same question. No one could really give me a straight answer. I will also admit that a used or a refurbished Mac does sound intriguing, rather than buy brand new.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 3:25 am

A new Mac isn't the best proposition unless you like to spend money. Go with a used one for sure, much better value. They're still not as cheap as PCs but they're certainly built much better than most PCs as well.

Depending on what you need to do I would go with a 13in non-Retina Macbook Pro. Good machine all-around, portable, upgradeable and won't break your bank. If you're lucky you can find the rarer i7 version with Applecare. Stick an SSD in it, 8GB RAM and you're set. Can probably get it for $800 or so without upgrades.

My current machine is a 15in MBP Retina. I transitioned from a Thinkpad and 20 years of Windows. It was NOT an easy transition but still interesting in some ways.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 6:56 am

derFunkenstein wrote:So anyway - Hackintosh. That's the beginner's Mac.

*snort*

Yeah ... no. If you want to go Hackintosh, there's nothing wrong with that per se, but I definitely wouldn't rate it as a beginner's option. If you're experienced with building your own PC and are comfortable with the idea of modifying the OS installation media, then by all means, go nuts. But it's not for somebody who doesn't want to get dirty with OS internals, which is (one of) the way(s) I interpret "beginner", and it's definitely not for somebody who isn't prepared to carefully check that they have supported hardware before they begin.

Me? I can do it, I just value my time too highly to do it. Fiddling around like that is too much like my day job.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 8:51 am

Ryu Connor wrote:Nope.

Not going to argue semantics either.

http://techreport.com/blog/18434/buildi ... ring-storm


It's one thing for the operators of the site to do what they want, it's another to allow exceptions for the public that clearly violates the spirit and rules that are set forth on terms of use (if a person doesn't have to follow terms of an EULA, what makes the forum rules any different?). I'm sure you would have issues if someone was to post how to use a Windows upgrade to install windows and validate it without being eligible for that upgrade. It can be done so I guess that is OK as well, EULA and DMCA be damned right?
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 9:10 am

The mods have decided that discussing Hackintoshes are OK. Drop the subject, you're polluting the thread.
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 9:45 am

Okay, and now for my non-humorous answer.

The answer really depends on whether you want portability or not, and how long you expect your "beginning" Mac to last before you outgrow it.

Everymac.com lists every (and I mean every) Mac that has ever been made. You should use it as a resource. Here are the options I'd consider, depending on how much processing power you want. New isn't always necessary; eBay and Craigslist can be your friend, but make sure you're getting a fair price (a lot of average people think their Mac is worth more than it is on the used market).

Macbook - The late model Core 2 Macbooks (before Apple eliminated the Macbook from its product line) are still great laptops. I would not buy anything earlier than the Core 2 (Unibody) models, and I would not buy anything that has Intel-based graphics (you would want the nVidia models). These should support 4GB-8GB of RAM depending on model, and could be sped up by adding an SSD. They should run anything through OS X 10.9 Mavericks.

iMac - I have my Dad still running a 20" iMac Aluminum with a Core 2 mobile and 4GB of DDR2, and it's running 10.9, supported fine. I'd probably go just a little newer here, with a Core i3 or i5 from Intel's Sandy Bridge family, so you'll have something that lasts awhile, and probably stick with the 21.5" display so you don't pay a ton.

Macbook Pro - I tend to like the smaller, 13" versions of the Macbook Pro due to the portability, but display size is a preference. Due to performance-per-watt improving, I'd probably go minimum Sandy Bridge i5 here as well.

Mac Mini - great choice, pick-your-own-monitor. Anything Core i-Series or newer should be good, the late Core2 P8800 model with Geforce graphics should be good too if you're on a budget, and you could consider an SSD upgrade for speed.

Macbook Air - I wouldn't buy less than a Core i-Series on these, because you're going to probably want good battery life and reasonable graphics, so you'll want Intel HD. Remember with these, what you buy may be what you get -upgrading them is a pain, when it is possible at all. Also, you'll need USB-to-Ethernet if you use wired connections. They are however, really nice on the portability front.

If your budget is higher, I'd check Apple's certified refurbished gear from the online Apple Store. You can't tell it from new, and it has the same one-year warranty. If you buy a portable Mac, you might want to use the savings to purchase AppleCare which upgrades the warranty to three years. One repair beyond the standard one-year warranty is all it takes for AppleCare to pay for itself (in the early 2000s I was an Apple Certified Tech; Apple parts are expensive out-of-warranty).
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 10:25 am

LoneWolf15 wrote:Image

(sorry, couldn't resist)


:lol:

TWO knobs? Isn't that a bit much for a Mac?
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Re: What is a good beginning Mac?

Postposted on Sat Aug 23, 2014 10:46 am

http://youtu.be/9BnLbv6QYcA

Nah. One button should do. XD ( And I use a 13 inch retina macbook pro with a haswell i5 :P )
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