I bought a MAC but I am still a PC.

by | Jul 2, 2010 | IT Consulting

The PC and I have been BFF’s for years. For Christmas, my wife got a unibody Macbook to replace her aging Dell. Knowing my wife uses her computer mostly for photos, music, email and web browsing, the Mac was a safe choice and gave me an opportunity to fully appreciate the Mac operating system – OS X.

Unexpectedly, it lead me to consider, and ultimately purchase my own Mac when I needed a new laptop in January.

When shopping for my new laptop, I considered the Dell Latitude E6400 (the same that we have recommended to many of our clients), the Lenovo T Series (the newer model of the last 2 laptops I’ve purchased), and the 13″ Macbook Pro.

Of the three laptops I considered, the Dell was the best bang for the buck. It had all of the features that the Lenovo had, at a lower cost. My last three laptops have been Lenovo T Series systems (T41 and T61) and I was very happy with the quality that Lenovo built into their systems and was ready to pay for that. But the Macbook Pro had one feature that I could not find in the other two systems – It runs the Mac operating system. If I was going to accelerate my knowledge of OS X – I would need to be able to use it on a regular basis.

The Mac is also an excellent host for running additional operating systems at the same time. So while the core system is using Mac OS X, I can load up several virtual systems on my laptop and use Windows or Linux as needed. Also, I have some video, web, and graphics projects on my plate right now – and the Mac is excellent for working with those types of projects.

So – I’ve been using my new Macbook Pro for 6 months now. How does it really stack up?

What I like:

  • I love the size. Of the three laptops I considered, this was the smallest, having a 13″ screen makes it easy to carry around and I didn’t have to sacrifice on the screen resolution.
  • It is easy to switch between using my Mac as a Mac and using my Mac as a PC
  • It handles my video, graphic, and web projects very well.

What I dislike:

  • There are times that my touch/track pad has a mind of its own. I don’t care for touchpad’s to begin with, and this isn’t much better. The gestures are cool, but I don’t use them enough to like it
  • Apple doesn’t know the difference between backspace and delete. The key says delete, but it backspaces. You have to hold down the control key to use it to delete.
  • The simplicity of the operating system means that it is easy to use, but it also means that there are fewer options or ways for you to customize things to the way I like it. This also extends into 3rd party applications. Perhaps Mac users don’t like options, so developers don’t build them in.
  • A LOT fewer programs run on Mac. Finding a good program that you need is difficult and there are fewer choices.

Overall, I am happy with my decision. The things that the Mac does really well, are so positive, that they eclipse the negatives (for me).  I’ve even considered purchasing a Mac desktop to replace my Dell Optiplex – which I may do someday.

I should be clear about one important point. The Mac is great for graphics/creative users and home users who work with photos, videos, email etc. The Mac is also great for the geeks out there who need a system that can do everything with some tweaking. The Mac is a poor choice for everyday business/office users because you will severely limit what applications you will be able to run on your system. While you can run Windows on a Mac, it is expensive, and has little to no advantage over simply using a PC for the job.