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Spend more and buy a mac?

For current or would-be users of Apple Mac computers, with answers to many FAQs.

Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby The Red Bladder » Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:05 pm

OK Dan - I do this stuff for a living and therefore you will get no religious 'this-versus-that' nonsense from me. So let's go through this all point-by-point -

MadManDan wrote:I am on a tight budget and am about to finance a daw. My objective is to set it up stable as possible and keep it as many years as I can.

Either you are using finance, or you are on a tight budget. Paying finance companies is the precise opposite of tightening your budget. There are plenty of good, used Apples and PCs out there that are more than capable of running a DAW. I am running 96 tracks on a five-year-old Acer that cost $400 new.

You do not have to pay through the nose for some brand PC, just because it is endorsed by your fav. DAW maker. I bet you go down to the store and get brand-X washing powder and ignore the sticker on your washing machine that tells you (on pain of death) that only brand-Y will do! The same applies to DAWs.

Then we have these two statements -
MadManDan wrote:I am on a tight budget.
MadManDan wrote:I have protools 12 and will only buy an Avid approved laptop.
In my world, those two statements are in direct conflict with one another. There used to be a very good reason for running PT and that was because either (a) you are working in a multi-user environment and everybody else is using PT and you need to exchange material several times a day, or (b) you are a facility owner and PT is what the customer asks for.

If you are one of the above, fine and carry on (and carrion as well) with PT. If not, Reaper will be far more stable and can do far more, especially in video post-production. It also allows you to use a much less powerful PC or Mac.

Even if you stick with PT, it pays to download Reaper, so that you can perform certain tasks quicker and in some cases better. (It may also pay to have a back-up DAW that you know well, as the future of Avid is very uncertain and the pay-as-you-go customers may easily find themselves without a DAW from one day to the next.)

But now we come to Windows v. Mac - domestic Windows is to be avoided! We have both Macs and PCs here and (quite apart from the fact that I hate both systems!) Windows Pro is worth the little extra. I do love the old Apple keyboards from 15 years ago and sadly the new ones are nowhere nearly as good! I am using one right now with my old Acer laptop and it just is the best. However the Apple OS seems a bit too Mickey Mouse to me, as I need to know where things are and not move little toy symbols around.

MadManDan wrote:the only Avid specified pc laptop, an hp z book g2.
Let's be quite clear about this - HP do not make laptops! What they do is to specify and badge laptops. The same applies to most 'Made in China' budget products, from mixing desks to computers. If you spec-up a computer to the same standard as the HP (screen, , you will get a very similar product.

However - if you are 100% stuck on PT, the Gold Standard is a Mac and not a PC, approved or otherwise! PT can cause all kinds of silly problems on a PC that just do not appear on a clean, stripped-out Mac. Even a 'dirty' Mac (i.e. one that has had all kinds of dufus software loaded all over its drives) that is also running PT in our place has never fallen over. There are all kinds of really good used Macs all over the Interweb and if you can come to terms with the Toys-R-Us OS, that (and not a PC) will run PT without any danger of getting a nose-bleed!
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Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby desmond » Thu Jul 12, 2018 2:23 pm

The Red Bladder wrote:if you can come to terms with the Toys-R-Us OS

You say you were trying to avoid the nonsense, but couldn't *quite* manage it... :lol: :tongue: ;)
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Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby TheLegit » Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:06 pm

I had an audio PC built from an established respected company (I won't name names as it's unfair and they offered an impressive level of support), and it's developed problems after a few years. I didn't get a Mac at the time as the spec I wanted meant double the cost. Now projects won't load and hang. I've been using PCs for music for years none have been trouble free, thought a proper music one would be fine and not the case.

Maybe I've been unlucky but I'm taking no more chances and an iMac order is on the way. If you have to save up and wait a bit longer do it (or get it on finance), APR on Apple isn't extortionate and 3k for a well specced iMac (27inch screen, i7, 16GB RAM + SSD) = £100 a month over three years which is bugger all really. The 27inch version allows you to increase RAM but the 21.5 doesn't so bear that in mind.
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Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby Panas1 » Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:08 pm

Macs have become a big ripoff as with every iteration they cut down on physical hardware ports. The idea of a "pro" computer that has no built-in Ethernet or USB 3 ports is ludicrous.

Then there's the built-in obsolescence enforced through Apple's yearly OS updates that make apps not run on older OS versions for no good reason, so if you want the latest version of your favourite apps you are eventually forced to buy a newer Mac despite the fact that your current Mac is perfectly capable and will work fine for many years.

Apple needs to be legally forced to change their disposable device policies.
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Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby TheLegit » Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:40 pm

Panas1 wrote:Macs have become a big ripoff as with every iteration they cut down on physical hardware ports. The idea of a "pro" computer that has no built-in Ethernet or USB 3 ports is ludicrous.

Then there's the built-in obsolescence enforced through Apple's yearly OS updates that make apps not run on older OS versions for no good reason, so if you want the latest version of your favourite apps you are eventually forced to buy a newer Mac despite the fact that your current Mac is perfectly capable and will work fine for many years.

Apple needs to be legally forced to change their disposable device policies.

They are always a rip off when you compare spec but it's the reliability that's key. I read an article showing the percentage of users with problems from Macs is lower than PCs. That's what I'm paying for ultimately.

Wasn't aware of the Mac App obsolescence though that's really bad.
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Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Fri Jul 13, 2018 5:42 pm

Well to give an example, I'm on Sierra. I'm currently up to date with Logic but but one version behind with Final Cut Pro. I won't be able to move off that until I move up to a later version of Mac OS. New versions of the OS are free, of course, but as time goes on older Macs do drop off the list of updateable machines. However that drop off point is back quite a bit. I'm on a 2012 Mac Mini, that will update to High Sierra and also (I just checked) Mojave. My wife's 2011 Mac Mini is still good for HS but not Mojave. Because Apple support the previous two versions to the current version that means that she can upgrade to HS and still be supported until autumn 2020. That's 9 years from the release date of her machine. Whether you regard that as good or not I can't say. Personally I think it could be better but it isn't bad.

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Re: Spend more and buy a mac?

Postby jagraphics » Sun Jul 15, 2018 10:52 am

ConcertinaChap wrote:Well to give an example, I'm on Sierra. I'm currently up to date with Logic but but one version behind with Final Cut Pro. I won't be able to move off that until I move up to a later version of Mac OS
CC

THAT is the problem with MAC's I am using a MAC PRo (silver tower) and a MAC Book Pro also of an older vintage (I can upgrade memory, battery, HDD/SSD and has a lot of io ports) The new versions of the OS won't support the MACBook Pro so I have El Capitan. This means I can't up date several of my programs.

NOTE when updating to El Captain the SDHC card reader in the macbook pro stopped working. I now have to use an external one.

Also my stand alone full Adobe Creative Suite CS6 (PS, Ai, Id, LR ) won't run *reliably* on the later versions of OSX.

SO if I want to update m OSX (which is free) my hardware may not handle it well and I would have to go to the subscription Adobe CC.

Now I would like to get Logic X but I delayed my decision (I am primarily a one man camera/sound team) and the ONLY version of Logic X I can buy from Apple won't run on El Capitan. (If anyone can sell me a copy that can I would be happy)

As soon as a new version of the OSX comes out the new versions of any Apple program takes advantage of it and usually becomes incompatible with any previous versions of OSX. Apple does NOT do backwards compatibility.

Enough of my woes but I hope this illustrates the problem. With a MAC either you stay up to date with Apple's Road map on both software AND hardware (which is expensive) or you start to have problems

The Apple infrastructure is more IoT and consumer than the hard core professional users and I think they have lost their edge.

The Silver MaC Pro Towers were very well designed and (over) engineered. the NEw MAC's are designed to limit any user serviceable stuff and seem to have built in obsolescence. The Quality of the Apple OSX is not what it was. At the same time Windows is improving.

Linux is not as good as either before anyone asks.

Starting now I would use PC not MAC/s (though I dearly love the MACs I do have). Though I think Apple got its arse bitten with the trash can Mac Pro so they may have learned their lesson and the next one might be worth having.
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