13 Replies Latest reply: Nov 18, 2011 7:52 AM by markfrompluneret Branched to a new discussion.
markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi. New to Mac, but heard a lot about them. That they're faster and more stable. I work with video and more often now in AVCHD or direct in MPEG. What Mac do I need: will an imac do and if so, i was thinking of the same spec as my pc: intel i7, 12 gb ram 2Te disk. Or can I get away with less or do I need a Mac Pro? If the latter what are the advantages over and above easier upgrades?


Many thanks for your feedback.

  • John Hammer1 Level 4 Level 4 (2,805 points)

    The fully-BTO-loaded 27" iMac is currently the fastest Mac available by most measures.


    I wouldn't recommend a Mac Pro to anyone right now unless they need PCI slots because the current model was first released a couple of years ago. The cost premium for the Mac Pro just isn't worth it for the vast majority of users, including some who think they need the "expandability" or "upgradeability" in the future.

  • markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'd like to get some feedback if possible from anyone who uses a Mac for Video and how they get on with Final Cut Express as opposed to Final Cut full version. Does the thing run without fault? Can you scan a timeline in real time without jerkiness, is the machine responsive? What is the average uptime and crash rate? My perception is that its worth buying a Mac for performance; is this reality or is a Mac just as susceptible to instability?

  • Beddo Level 1 Level 1 (25 points)

    Do some research on the iMacs before diving in. 


    The aluminum iMacs have been plagued with issues since 2006 and Apple expects you to pay a premium on top of your premium to have confidence that you will have a fully functioning computer for 3 years.


    I would not recommend buying unless you can afford the Apple Care plan because this computer will have issues eventually and any issue equals time without the unit since it is an all-in-one device.


    Expect to defend yourself and your "work" environment where the machine is kept because Apple tends to blame the harsh users for the fault of their product.


    I've fixed many iMacs for people, from several failing HDDs to rebaking solder points to swapping LCDs.  Heat is a killer, and these things run hot.


    Below you will see comments about operating at normal temperatures..etc, but look up what the maximum temperature any magnetic media should be running at, and then read about how hot these things run.  Apple has not implemented special wiring which makes it much more difficult to swap or upgrade a HDD too.


    Good luck in your decision.

  • markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    That seems a little more negative! I can say that my i7 CPU runs at about 30°C with a 750W power supply, so the room is pretty hot as it is. I'll see what info I can dig up, but interesting about the care plan (will have to see price). Do Mac Pros run cooler than iMac. I was a little concerned about the gubbins all being in the screen. The Sony Vaio that came out like that never had much success. It seems to me that the best selling Mac is a Mac Book but I dont want one. Tx

  • John Hammer1 Level 4 Level 4 (2,805 points)

    The people who come here for help are obviously those who are having trouble. Similarly, people who retain the services of repair folk such as Beddo. But they are a tiny fraction of the number of people who purchase and use.


    The suggestion to purchase AppleCare is a good one, no matter what you buy from Apple. I wouldn't worry much about the rest.

  • markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm not here to start a smanging match. I'm pretty sure I'm going to buy a Mac anyway since I already have six business PCs running and I'd like a change! I am however quite excited at the prospect of something working solidly and look for reassurance on that. In general I'm against extended warranties since I expect top price hardware to work.


    The second question is which one: to which I already had something of an answer: a new config iMac could be faster than the current MacPro config. I figure that if a Mac keeps its price, then I can cross that bridge later while getting on and learning.


    However, is taking top spec (16 Gb RAM) worth it or is that purely a personal choice? If I do, the idea is that the machine will run better (that must be true) and last longer on the upgrade path, as long as the hardware lasts. In my PC experience, hand made computers tend over the long run to consume money through config errors. The theory of Mac as I understand it is good quality well matched hw. Right?

  • John Hammer1 Level 4 Level 4 (2,805 points)

    RAM is trivial to install and much less expensive at Crucial.com or other reputable dealers of Mac-compatible RAM than if you have Apple install it for you. As for reliability:


    http://www.macrumors.com/2010/11/30/apple-smokes-the-competition-in-reliability- survey/


    You get a 1-year AppleCare warranty free with the purchase of any new or refurbished Mac from Apple. The purchase of AppleCare (which you can do at any time before the 1-year warranty expires) extends the warranty period to 3 years from date of purchase. Only you can decide if the extra 2 years of insurance is worth it for you.

  • Beddo Level 1 Level 1 (25 points)

    In addition, from the department of providing links to support ones own beliefs:


    http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/computers/apple-laptops-fourth-in-reliability -study-20091118-im8t.html


    Even your own link proves that 9% of Apple issues are NOT able to be fixed by Apple.  That doesn't count issues that are brought to their attention over and over.  At least my ference study covers years of data, although I doubt it is accurate itself.


    I will also add that you have 14 days to return your product for a refund.  Anything after that it is a repair or swap with a refurbished unit.


    When you get your iMac home, turn all of the lights off and place a solid light colored backgroun in place or use a blank web browser to check for discoloration.  It typically will start in one area and spread.  Do NOT attempt to fix this yourself and contact Apple Care if you see issues. 

  • John Hammer1 Level 4 Level 4 (2,805 points)

    You need to calm down. This aggressive attitude, "department of providing links to support ones own beliefs," stuff is the reason you've had a post deleted and another edited for you by the mods today.

  • First Magus Level 6 Level 6 (15,850 points)

    markfrompluneret wrote:


    In general I'm against extended warranties since I expect top price hardware to work.


    I also normally do the same.  But when it comes to Apple the Applecare plan is great.  I always buy it for my Macs and it has paid for itself over the years.  Now matter how good a product is sometime stuff happens.  My DVD drive went out on my old MacBook after 2 1/2 years.  Apple replaced it and a few other things that they didn't like the look of.  A cracked keyboard.  No cost and it kept going for a few more years before I replaced it with a MacBook Pro and an iMac.


    LA Computers sells the applecare cheaper than apple and it is the same thing.


    You need to decide do you want portability or not.  I can attest to both the new iMac and the new MacBook Pro are great. 


  • markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well that's all done. I bought an iMac (with warranty)

    Very impressed (until I discovered a bug in Final Cut Pro X which is getting on my proverbials).

    See separate post

  • markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well I'm just not sure.  A month later having worked with the iMac (i5) I've already boosted it to 16 Gb and its at 100% CPU for certain tasks (playback on CS5 Encore). Doesn't seem quite powerful enough. I'm seeing an Apple rep today to discuss. I think a more appropriate machine for my (video) requirements is an i7 but I'm wondering seriously if an iMac is enough and whether I shouldn't go for more (a Mac Pro?).

  • markfrompluneret Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well all this doubt came about because of a problem encoding with CS5. See http://forums.adobe.com/thread/925744


    I went to show the Apple guy the problem and the problem was no more! So: back to my i5 !!!