Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mac or PC?

Location: Bedroom floor
Listening to: HP & The Half-Blood Prince
Days Til College: 3!!!
Followers: 45!!!!!!!

WELCOME NICOLE!!!! :) It makes me happy that you decided to follow my random musings. Thanks!

You guys. I have a dilemma. My current laptop is an ancient, dinosaur of a Dell that used to belong to my mom before she got a new computer last year for her business and decided, instead of gifting me a new computer for college, I could have her hand-me-down one. This thing is at least 5 years old and still runs on Windows XP. The keys are literally falling off and refusing to reattach. Every once in a while, the fan makes this terrible wheezing sound, like it's seriously considering just giving up and dying right now.

In other words, it's time to start looking for something new.

My problem lies in deciding what kind of laptop I want to buy when I have the money to buy a new one. All I really use my computer for is sitting on Facebook or blogging, writing papers, listening to music, and occasionally playing games, which any PC can do.

But, with a future career in journalism, one day I might need to run Photoshop or InDesign or other big, graphic-design-ish programs that I learned how to use on a Mac and that Macs are generally more capable of handling.

As my mom likes to remind me, if I ever have an in-house job at a newspaper, they will most likely provide me with the computer and programs I need to accomplish my job, so I could easily just get the less-expensive option now and just be bestowed a new one when I graduate and get a job. But, if I end up having to freelance, I'll need to get the computer and programs on my own, so it might make more sense to get what would be most practical in the future now, just in case.

And computers are always, always changing and there's always something bigger and more capable coming out.

And I'm working on a pretty limited budget. If I get a PC, I could afford one by Thanksgiving. If I go for a Mac, I'd have to wait longer.

The whole thing just kind of blows my mind.

I really need your help, guys. Are any of you tech whizzes who can break down the differences (performance-wise and cost-wise) between Macs and PCs for me? Because that would be extremely helpful. If you're not a tech whiz, which do you use: Mac or PC? What do you love and hate about it? Which would you recommend to someone like me?

And do you have any recommendations for a specific model (Mac or PC) that you think would fit my needs? Because I really have no clue where to start with this.

Sorry for a post that only begs for your help. I promise I'll write something to amuse you soon!


  1. I'm so not a tech whiz! Though I think you should get the cheaper PC at the minute because that's all you need right now. Your mum is right, they'll probably give you the proper equipment if you're working to a company so you'd just be wasting money. But if you do freelance work, then at least you'll be earning money to afford to buy a Mac plus software whereas you don't at the minute. Hope this helps :)

  2. I'm not a tech wiz either but I am majoring in Communications (Production) and for Communication-related careers I know Macs are where it's at. I had a Dell (and still do) but things got way too complicated when working on all kinds of projects and such. Although it could take you longer to get the Mac I think it's an investment. Besides, Macs are pretty amazing. :)

    Hope this helps ya. :)

  3. I recently went through a Dell-Suicide myself and decided to research everything in the world to find the best suitable replacement. I will say this, if you plan on running a lot of the fancier design programs, Macs are certainly great for those, but from my experience they are most helpful with large amounts of photo editing (like if you were a professional wedding photographer or summat) or if you work with creating a lot of music and videos. My boyfriend is a graphic designer and film maker, so he uses Photoshop and InDesign, but he uses a PC and has so far been able to create everything he needs just fine. Since I cannot justify spending over a thousand dollars in one go on a laptop, I decided to go the PC route, and managed to find an affordable and legit piece of machinery for my needs: I ended up buying a Lenovo Ideapad, and it has so far been really great. I got to upgrade from Windows XP as well and I like Windows 7 a whole lot more. The Lenovo is sleek and pretty and makes me feel like a secret agent spy when I use it (always a plus) and has a bunch of hard drive space, good amounts of Ram, a one-touch reset button in case it decides to kill itself, you can press this and it will revert to original settings rather than just die on you for forever, and it runs nicely. As far as brands that last, Lenovo (which is the new face of the old IBM) and Toshiba are the PCs I'd steer you toward. Just do the research and look at customer reviews for known problems, those end up being the most helpful for the stuff the sales guy at Best Buy may not clue you in on.

    Uh, right, so long story short, I'd go PC if you want a good machine that you can get soon that will be capable of running those larger programs, but go the Mac route if you really feel like in the long run that will serve you better. At this point, PCs are getting better all the time at being able to run the programs you're talking about, so it comes down to personal preference. Hope this helps some! I love my Lenovo (his name is Lancelot), so there's one tried-and-true recommendation for ya.

  4. I use PC cos it's so much less expensive! Plus you can do almost everything you do on a mac on a PC.
    But I am not a tech whiz, so feel free to discount my opinion :)

  5. I was directed here by the lovely Emma Harr. I am a graphic designer and filmmaker, with my degree in visual communication. I have the Adobe creative suite for PC, and I like it fine. While Macs are great for this kind of stuff, and most people in the industry do use them, PCs also do a good job, and I think you'd be fine with getting a PC. If you do freelance work, it shouldn't make much of a difference, and if your work gives you a Mac, then great. Macs do cost a lot more, sometimes doublish what a PC does, for about the same specifications. However, if you buy the Adobe products for a PC, that license will not work on a Mac, so be aware of that. So, if you get a PC version, you can't just install it on a Mac version if you end up getting a Mac a little later.

  6. I use both but PC is the way to go price wise. I do have a related comment while you are still at school make the investment in Adobe full suite you pay about .10 on the dollar of full price. You will use it and it is mad expensive at full price. There are many other software discounts for students too so you might be able to find a PC less the OS and save about $100 bucks. My only other advice is spend what you need for a laptop but get a desktop once your settled. They can be modified and upgraded and like me I use 3, 22" screens and have 8-10 things running at any given time. No laptop even comes close.