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Mark W

Possibly Gonna Be Buying A Mac...

94 posts in this topic

I didn't really think this qualified as a "Mac Problem Thread" post, so here we are.

Basically, all the stuff we do at uni is done on Macs, and it basically means that some of the time I have to do all my work at uni because I don't have the compatible software on my PC at home. For a slacking nightowl like me, this "Up early, straight to uni to work" setup is pretty weak, and a situation I'd like to avoid. I've saved up some money from my student loan, so over the summer I'm thinking of buying a Mac.

I've been looking at either getting some kind of Macbook, or something along the lines of a MacMini. I've got about £600 or so to spend, so it's gotta fall within that price range, ideally.

I think the cheapest Macbook available is £599, so that might be pushing it, so I've been leaning more towards the Mac Mini. I'd probably go for the slightly more expensive £499 version, simply 'cos that extra space = ideal. However, that leaves me needing a keyboard, mouse and monitor. I'm going to assume that my PC stuff isn't going to be compatible (I've got an aftermarket keyboard, wireless mouse and monitor), so how much would I be looking at for a relatively basic setup to get me going? I looked on the package options on the Apple site, but their cheapest combo monitor is some 20" widescreen one that's the price on the Mac Mini on top, so f**k thaaaaaat.

So yeah, basically: Should I go Macbook, or Mac Mini (And if Mac Mini, what sort of setup should I get?)?

Cheers for any help...

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Out of those two i'd probably go for the macbook purely because it's alot more portable.

Baring in mind when moving from home to uni and around various places. Little things like if you don't want to be stuck in your room/where you keep your computer, you can just shift your laptop to the lounge, bed or whatever. The white macbooks are damm nice and i'd defiantly go for that option, baring in mind you'll get it on student discount as well.

Apple care especially is only about £50 instead of £200? on education price which is a great deal.

I'm not sure about your keyboard and mouse set up. If your mouse works off usb I don't see why it wouldn't?

Also if your going away you'll have that portability of looking up things on the net, backing up photos etc.

Good choice on the mac anyway, they are just so so good (Y)

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Im super tired and just on here quick so cant reply in depth but if you wanna hassle me via msn feel free.

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Yeah, I saw the "Education savings" shit, but on the Mac site, the "Higher education" link is FUBAR'd, so I didn't know what I'd be saving. The portability of the Macbook is a tempter, but what's the 13" (Think it was...) screen like for image editing 'n' stuff?

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Yeah the macbook is 13" and fine for editing i'd say. Probably the best set up you could do is buy a laptop and then if you do find yourself leaving it on a desk or whatever eventually buy a 20"/23" monitor as a duel screen.

I've got a 15" MBP which is perfectly fine for editing. The screens are really nice, defiantly get a matt screen too, glossy is horrible in my opinion.

Wouldn't bother too much with the education site as i'm not sure they are totally correct, you'll get a much better deal if you ring up apple. They throw you discount left right and centre.

Also they are light too, so carrying it around in your bag is gonna be a lot easier than your average 3 foot thick dell :P

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Yeah, I saw the "Education savings" shit, but on the Mac site, the "Higher education" link is FUBAR'd, so I didn't know what I'd be saving. The portability of the Macbook is a tempter, but what's the 13" (Think it was...) screen like for image editing 'n' stuff?

i have a G4 12" powerbook and it is awesome, super small and portable, i do a graphic design degree and have had no problems with image editing etc.

good choice with the mac sir!

best off getting the macbook over the mac mini because then as you get more money you can upgrade RAM, hard drives etc etc whereas with the mac mini you cant do that.

also try giving them a ring or access the store from your uni intranet for bigger discounts!

cheers

Dan

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Yeah, I saw the "Education savings" shit, but on the Mac site, the "Higher education" link is FUBAR'd, so I didn't know what I'd be saving. The portability of the Macbook is a tempter, but what's the 13" (Think it was...) screen like for image editing 'n' stuff?

Educational discount is ~20% but you can only get on the site via your university network. Or go into an Apple shop and show them some ID.

You can use any old PC USB (or bluetooth) keyboard and mouse with a mac mini, it doesn't matter although the cmd/control/alt buttons will be in the 'wrong' place (Compared to the computers at university), so for what it's worth I'd probably get a mac keyboard. The right mouse button on the mouse will work just fine (I use a logitech mouse with my mac).

The 13" screen on the Macbook is widescreen, 1440 x 900 resolution. I like (Photoshop) editing on widescreen since you can have your palettes at the side and a nice square area in the middle for your image. The macbook screen is glossy and the colours look really nice on it but you might have problems with reflections. Some people prefer the gloss, some don't. I quite like it.

Of the two, I'd go for the lowest Macbook. £200 more, but take away the cost of a screen, keyboard AND you get a slightly better spec than the mini (faster CPU) and it's portable.

If you really didn't care about portability and wanted a computer solely for image editing, I'd get the mini and a decent 20-22" widescreen. Actually I wouldn't, I'd get a PC but there you go...

i have a G4 12" powerbook and it is awesome, super small and portable, i do a graphic design degree and have had no problems with image editing etc.

Really? I've got the same and it's so slow for Photoshop. My older PC is many, many times faster. Don't get me wrong, I really like the little 12" PB, but a workhorse it ain't.

EDIT: This is off topic anyway cos the Macbooks are way more powerful than a Powerbook.

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*Loads of useful stuff*

Yeah, I'm definitely leaning more towards the Macbook. Main reason is just that since moving from Halls to private accommodation, I've realised I've got a lot of 'shit' - just stuff I thought I needed, but really don't, and I want to strip down what I need in my life to the bare minimum just for convenience, so being able to just have a Macbook would be < than having a Mini with a shitload of cables and the like everywhere. Plus, Mr.Mackinnon tells me that the new Macbooks are coming out at the start of June, and as I'm gonna be spending the £££s on the Macbook in July, that works out pretty nicely.

I'm largely going to be using it for image editing, but potentially for video stuff too, and just random stuff in general as it'll probably be taking over my PC as my 'general use' computer. For £30 more you can upgrade from the 120gb harddrive to a 160gb harddrive, which is a tempter too, as £30 for 40gb is a pretty good ratio.

Cheers for all the help from everyone anyway, much appreciated :)

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What do all you Mac Users, use as an alternative to msn?

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I'm largely going to be using it for image editing, but potentially for video stuff too, and just random stuff in general as it'll probably be taking over my PC as my 'general use' computer. For £30 more you can upgrade from the 120gb harddrive to a 160gb harddrive, which is a tempter too, as £30 for 40gb is a pretty good ratio.

Pfft no it's not :P

You can replace the hard drives on Macbooks really easily - they just slide in under the battery. So you can stick any old notebook hard drive in. Like this one: 250Gb for £57 which works out at 23p per Gb, not 75p for the Apple upgrade price :)

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mini-laptop-fujitsu-P7230.jpg

+

raidiator-satin10.GIF

=

macbook.jpg

whats so great about macs?

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Plus, Mr.Mackinnon tells me that the new Macbooks are coming out at the start of June

These are all rumours though - Apple never announce the new PCs until the day they're available for sale, so no one actually knows. They do have fairly consistent 'product cycles' though, so it's kinda possible to predict, but it's not an exact science: http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/#MacBook

whats so great about macs?

Yeah, you hit the nail on the head. It's just the paintjob. Now go away.

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Pfft no it's not :P

You can replace the hard drives on Macbooks really easily - they just slide in under the battery. So you can stick any old notebook hard drive in. Like this one: 250Gb for £57 which works out at 23p per Gb, not 75p for the Apple upgrade price :)

Awesome, cheers :) I'll have to bear that in mind. I'm going to try and improve my workflow with my photography so hopefully I won't have a shitload of unusable photos taking up Gbs + Gbs of space like I do on my PC right now. I don't reeeeeeally want to delete them, but at the same time I don't reeeeeeeally need to keep them...

mini-laptop-fujitsu-P7230.jpg

+

raidiator-satin10.GIF

=

macbook.jpg

whats so great about macs?

As this thread has probably highlighted, I'm not amazing with computer related shit, but I'm probably still advanced enough to know that Plastikote doesn't completely change the operating system and make my life vastly, vastly easier in terms of compatibility between working from home and working at uni. Just a hunch, you know?

These are all rumours though - Apple never announce the new PCs until the day they're available for sale, so no one actually knows. They do have fairly consistent 'product cycles' though, so it's kinda possible to predict, but it's not an exact science: http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/#MacBook

Yeah, you hit the nail on the head. It's just the paintjob. Now go away.

Cool, cheers for the heads up :)

If they announce the day after I buy my Macbook that the new ones are available, I'll probably go back to whichever Apple store I go to (Probably the mahoosive one on Regents Street) and shit.

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These are all rumours though - Apple never announce the new PCs until the day they're available for sale, so no one actually knows. They do have fairly consistent 'product cycles' though, so it's kinda possible to predict, but it's not an exact science: http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/#MacBook

EDIT: I think I just f**ked up big time... brb.

Let me off... I've been awake for 36 hours with 5 hours sleep... :(

But I've heard June is going to be a time for new MacBooks, because Apple have just had a load of 13" alu cases ordered, or something. I don't know, I'm tired!

Edited by JonMack

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I'm getting a Mac Book soon.

But - if I buy it, and they do upgrade in June, will I regret it.

Bearing in mind I'm gonna be using it for Logic 8 basically.

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EDIT: I think I just f**ked up big time... brb.

Let me off... I've been awake for 36 hours with 5 hours sleep... :(

But I've heard June is going to be a time for new MacBooks, because Apple have just had a load of 13" alu cases ordered, or something. I don't know, I'm tired!

Yeah, there's always rumours. I read that there's a new Intel chip out in June so the Macbooks will be updated with that in, but you can never really tell. 13" alu cases = smaller MBP, surely? If that's true I am sooooo getting one.

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What do all you Mac Users, use as an alternative to msn?

msn, you can download a mac version @ mactopia (Y)

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I got given a couple of Mac Keyboards by my neighbour, don't know if your intrested in one?

Edited by Joeee

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I didnt fully read much of this thread but im just gonna go ahead and post some shit here anyway...

Buy a Mac Mini. They are updating the processor and stuff soon so maybe wait for the new ones..

The student discount comes in 2 forms, one that is like 6% off or something that any old twat can use, student or not, and one that you can only use if you are signing in from a uni computer, other wise the link goes nowhere. that discount is maybe 10% or more, i dunno.

As for the screen and crap, you can use any screen mouse and keyboard, they all work as long as its usb, some with work better than others. i got a razer mouse for my mac, was like £24 and its better than a mighty mouse. have a mac keyboard that is nice, £30. i would have stuck with a pc keyb but i use all the function keys loads. you can get a nice samsung 19' monitor now for like just over a hundred squid. i have one, its amazing if a little small..

as for software, when i got my mac a few months ago i tried hard to find all the same software i had for the pc, like msn, office etc.. then realised its all total shit and makes having a mac pointless. a mac comes with pretty much everything you need, like email and ichat, itunes and the likes. all i have extra installed is logic express and photoshop. as long as you dont install any dodgy 'pc software converted by blind monkeys' on the mac it will run super smooth.

having said all that, my mate has a macbook and its hella nice. but unless you fully need a portable machine, get a mini... infact, i take my mini to college all the time and just plug in a monitor, works really well, and im the koolest kid in school now

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Depends what your using it for really, macbooks are swish, Im typing on mine as I speak. Pretty fast, personally I dont like the mini's, to slow but then I do like to kain every graphics programme going on them so thats why. Go with the macbook if you want something movable around, should fill most your needs. (Y)

And if your still stuck, there white and cool looking so that might help you make up your mind...

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Educational discount is ~20% but you can only get on the site via your university network. Or go into an Apple shop and show them some ID.

The 13" screen on the Macbook is widescreen, 1440 x 900 resolution. I like (Photoshop) editing on widescreen since you can have your palettes at the side and a nice square area in the middle for your image. The macbook screen is glossy and the colours look really nice on it but you might have problems with reflections. Some people prefer the gloss, some don't. I quite like it.

Higher Education discount on the MacBooks is 14% and Applecare is £47 instead of £199 which is a bargain. The screens on the MacBook's are only gloss which is a bit shit for image editing but it could be worse. Ideal solution would be using a MBP 15.4 and then get Antiglare screen which gives more realistic saturation and contrast replication.

Mac Mini's are shit. Upgrades are hard, they're messy and I think you would be much better suited for a MacBook. If you buy through the online store I think you may qualify for something called Tricare which is if you buy through your Uni. It's shit hot and may save you £47. Gives same applecare hardware coverage but without the phone support.

Putting 4gb's of ram in to the MacBook is easy peasy too and using stuff like PS and AI it's much better, kinda making up for the shoddy graphics card in them.

When are you looking at buying? If you can wait out for 6 weeks I would....

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Right.

I went into the Macshop in Southampton, and this is the info I got :)

It's £757.59 for a 13" 2.5GHz Macbook, 2GB's Ram, and a 120GB 5200 hardrive and apple care.

£712.94 for the Macbook

then

£44.59 for 3 years Apple Care.

After having an in-depth chat to the bloke serving me, he seemed pretty certain that Macbooks weren't going to be changing.

I'm tempted to actually ring up Mac to see if they say anything different, just incase he was lying to get me to buy it.

Hendrix.

edit : it might be a smaller GHz, but is defiantly that price.

edit 2 : Actually. There are enough websites, which have got it right before, saying that they're updating, that this could well be true. I think I'll wait a month to be honest.

Edited by Hendrix

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yes, phone them up and they will reveal secrets of line upgrades to you. :P

chances are they will. but the new ones will probably be hella spensive.

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Chances are the new ones will be the same price ;) They always are. I'd like to get a Macbook but the tiny screen really puts me off. I'm used to using a 20"+ screen and I don't think i'd ever quite adapt to using a 13" screen.

To all of you slagging off Mac Minis...bugger off :P

Mine's a 1.4Ghz G4 with 512MB of RAM and i've got Logic 8 running on it just fine! It also gives me a choice of screen and peripherals. I've got a 20" Dell screen, a white mac keyboard and a Microsoft mouse.

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