Mac vs. PC

(DwarvenFury) #1

Hey guys. I’ve been hearing some good things about Macs lately, and I’ve been wondering about getting a Mac when I get a new computer. (I do apply for the Educational Discount, so that’ll save me a bit of $$$.) Do any of you have first hand experience with Macs and know how they compare with PCs especially in terms of how good they are for graphics programs? Is 512 MB going to cut it for Blender and other graphics programs, or do I need 1 GB + on a Mac? What’s a 1.67 GHz G4 processor equivalent to in terms of an Intel or AMD chip? Coming from the Intel/Windows side of things, I’m a real newb as far as knowing what I should get, if/when I get the money. Thanks.:smiley:


(z3r0 d) #2

First: performance will be sufficent

Second: like windows lots of ram is a good thing

Third: consider waiting for the intel-based macs to come out [the rumors say the beginning of next year]

We could argue for pages and pages about performace. It’s hard enough to tell the difference between the 2.0Ghz pentium M from the 2.8Ghz athlons from the 3.6Ghz pentium 4 chips, throwing another wildly different chip in the mix just confuses everything.

(Metsys) #3

Mac OS is really nice, and that’s why I would get it, aside from the fact that they are the best looking computer’s I’ve seen (and the new iMacs with the built-in camera and remote are pretty cool).

But you do pay more money for performance on a Mac. For everyday use, a Mac is fine for computing power. But I like to have as much CPU power as possible to render my animations, and in that case having a PC is better for that (since it will likely just be a headless computer, i.e. no monitor).

Get 1GB of RAM, especially if you use Blender. As we all know, RAM sets the bar as far as what your computer can and can’t do when it comes to rendering.

I guess it really matters as far as what you are going to be doing with that computer. For some I’d definatly say Mac, and for some I’d definatly say PC. I base it on what my needs are. I love Macs, but my needs (and money) prevent me from getting one, even though I love working on those machines.

(henrymop) #4

I’d personally say Mac, cause they have been around for years, they perform better than Windows(in my opinion), and they can run Linux.

(Enriq766) #5

I say BOTH…

(knellotron) #6

It’s sort of a toss up right now:

-OS X is great, but Apple’s hardware sucks this year.
-Windows sucks, but the hardware is great.

I think the ideal opportunity is to get a PC laptop and put either Linux or OS X (X as in haxx0r) on it, or wait until the Intel macs are on rev B.

(Artaures) #7

wait wait, there is a mac still?! O_O omgwtfbbq


ive heard 95% of the WORLD uses windows now.

(GAT-X105) #8

Macs are way better then Windows for any kind of art stuff (3D, movie making etc)… Plus Apple is just way cooler then Microsoft anyway :smiley:
Which is way I like them. Get a Mac.
Unless you’re a gamer. Windows owns Macs a games :frowning:

(DwarvenFury) #9

Just a bit more info. I’m not planning on gaming on my next computer. My current PC was built and designed for gaming, but now I don’t game on PC. :-? My main uses would be Garage Band, Final Cut Express HD(I think that’s what it’s called), Blender, general graphics, video-editing, and then DVD authoring for the videos that I make. Thanks for the tips so far guys.:smiley:


(Alltaken) #10

well any computer will do, they are pretty much the same these days, i have seen no significant differences between PC’s and Mac’s, nothing to write to my mother about.

i personally purchase on price performance, Macs are coming down in price, but Apple is going down in quality (they are nolonger a Moral company as they so wished to portray themselves) so whichever way you look at it, you are gonna be dealing with a microsoft, or a microsoft in apple skin clothing.

buy whichever you think you want to.


(Artaures) #11

i know this is somewhat gamer specific, but you will get a kick out of it

(osxrules) #12

If you look at some of the Blender benchmarks that were posted a while back, you can see that there’s not much performance difference between Macs and PCs as Alltaken said - just remember like with AMD, you can’t compare clock speed directly with Pentiums. One thing I will say is that people spend more time optimizing the PC versions. Some people don’t recommend getting Maya for the Mac because the PC version is optimized much better. If you get software that is optimized for AltiVec like an external renderer then the speed is much better.

You do need at least 1GB Ram and fast hard drives help too like SATA because OS X has good memory management but it uses hard drive space to do it.

The thing I like on my Mac is the video editing. The G5 is especially good for this because it has high bandwidth. You will absolutely need a G5 for video stuff. You can’t even play HD on anything less. My G4 can play 480p but no more.

For gaming, there are fewer titles available than for a PC but for me personally, gaming is not a priority and you can always get a PS2 or 3. A lot of good games are still available though like Doom 3, the Myst games, Lego Star Wars, Tiger Woods PGA, XIII, The Sims 2, Colin Mcrae Rally 2005, Call of Duty, Warcraft, battlefield 1942, Star Wars games, LOTR, Halo, SoF2:double helix, James Bond games etc. OS X made it much easier to port games and general software over.

The only Macs I like in the line up are the Mac Mini and the G5 tower - I really don’t like all-in-ones any more because I like to be able to upgrade the monitor without changing computer. The G5 price was a bit surprising to me:

dual-core 2GHz
GeForce 6600 128MB
3 PCI-X slots

for just £1399 - that’s the same as the 1.67GHz G4 powerbook.

As someone said though, the Intel Macs should be out next year and I think given that Apple will eventually stop selling PPC machines, the price will drop considerably - just like Rover cars. That might be the best time to buy a G5 actually. Consumers are stupid that way because as soon as they hear something is discontinued, they assume it’s worthless.

I would probably recommend to get a Mac Mini to tide you over and get you used to the system until the Intels come out but I feel you might be disappointed with the performance of it, especially if you have a fast PC. Plus, I don’t think you should buy the first Intel that comes out so you might have a bit of a wait - maybe a year or so. The first revision models are usually problematic and not all the software will be available.

But, there are rumours that you will be able to run Windows on it and Apple hasn’t denied the possibility of running Windows so that might not be a problem. You might even be able to eventually have a machine to run Windows, Linux and OS X together. Apple already support UFS for Linux but they’d have to support read/write NTFS - just now it’s read-only and read/write MS-DOS.

If you compare a G4 for performance, it’s about the same as a Pentium at 1.25-1.5 times the clock speed. That’s a really rough estimate but in my experience that’s about right. So a 1.67GHz G4 is roughly like a 2.2 GHz Pentium. If you look at this chart:

it gives a rough idea about how to compare Pentium, PPC and AMD. All the processors on each row have roughly the same performance. Again it depends on software though.

On that same site, you can weigh up the 1.67 G4 with a 1.6 P-M for features:

It doesn’t have a benchmark but contrary to their processor list, I think the Pentium-m is faster than the G4. The 1.67GHz G4 laptop will play Doom 3 on medium.

These days, your choice on which platform is more down to software than hardware. The costs to performance on Mac/PC is about the same but on Windows, there is more software available and it is better optimized. Mac laptops are usually lighter and have better battery life though.

(Metsys) #13

Garage Band and Final Cut? There’s your answer. Get a Mac. :slight_smile:

(JD-multi) #14

I’ve been working on Mac and PC for like years now. And one thing that’s still bothering me is that Mac is a Mac, when you let it meet something else, it refuses to work with it, and you pay the price of having Mac hardware or software. You can buy a PC HD for cheap stuff everywhere or a videocard with no problem, but finding the first time a good Mac shop is a pain in the arse. As well that most of those shops bother you with that you have to buy Mac hardware because Mac hardware is THE_SHIT as well that they keep saying PC hardware damages or doesn’t work with MAC, pure bullshit.

One time I had to buy a external HD, my boss said, ok find one to buy. I went to the Mac shop and they gave me a preview on one for like 200 euro, and told me it was the best and such. Sure it work on Mac only, and you pay for that. Aftherwards I bought a external HD that worked on MAc as well on PC, but believ me, they never let you know that. :slight_smile:

Most of the times I find those Mac guys a bit weird, telling me that Mac is the stuff to have and PC is crap, as well that opensource is some piece of crap, and always showing you, Look what mac can do, look what mac looks like, look how fast mac is, and when you say, What compared to PC? Euh… Well mac, this mac… the mac… euh mac…

Hehe, No way I buy one, you search yourself death to find stuff for mac, you pay your ass off for mac, and you get in contact with most anoying mac guys ever. NO way I ever buy a mac, unless they give me money and a mac. mmh but even then :stuck_out_tongue: Also try to build your own mac, like you can do with a pc, hehe let me know how long it kept you bussy? :smiley: And how long you search for componnets or at least some friendly help of someone who don’t bother you with a 200 dollar bill included a nice mac logo on it for helping you.

Also some funcky fact. You get a lot of software included with mac osx, really cool stuff and really usefull I have to say. It’a way better then windows, and the most awesome part has to come when they let you know when a update is there. “We have another update to a complete new version, click here to buy it” It’s like paying for window mediaplayer, notepad, wordpad or a mp3 video playlist organiser. hehe funny apple guys.

(DwarvenFury) #15

Alright, sounds like I’m going to be shopping for a Mac for my next computer, then.:smiley: Right now I’ve been trying to decide on whether I want a laptop or a desktop. Hard decision for me, b/c I’d love to be able to take a computer with me and still be able to work. But, then again, I want a powerful computer, too. The Dual-Core G5 (2GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB HD, 6600 LE) desktop that I’m looking at is almost the same price as the Powerbook G4 (1.67GHz, 1 GB RAM, 80 GB HD, 9700 Pro, 15" screen 1440x960) that I’d want if I got a laptop. I like the idea of either waiting for the Intel chips and buying one of those after a while, or getting one of the PPC Macs when the price drops. Any thoughts regarding laptop vs. desktop? Thank you all for your help so far.:smiley:


(knellotron) #16

PCs aren’t any different here, if you have decent RAM & SATA hard drives.

For gaming, there are fewer titles available than for a PC

This really isn’t as big of a deal as people think. I use Linux, and even then, I have no shortage of games.

You might even be able to eventually have a machine to run Windows, Linux and OS X together.

PCs can do this already, but it’s not 100% legal.

Apple already support UFS for Linux

I thought so too, but then I tried formatting an external hard drive in UFS in OS X, and Linux couldn’t read it.

but they’d have to support read/write NTFS - just now it’s read-only and read/write MS-DOS.

Fat32 = Windows 98’s format. It’s not that old.

Mac laptops are usually lighter and have better battery life though.

Not really. Their laptops’ performance has been up against a wall for about 2 years now. The laptops have the most to gain from the Intel switch.

People always say Macs are better for graphics, but I’ve never been able to figure out why. Those people all use Adobe’s software, which is also available for PCs. In fact, all of Adobe’s recent programs (Premiere, Audition, Graphics Server, Acrobat Pro, FrameMaker, and Encore) are Windows only. Final Cut Pro is usually referred to as Apple’s killer app, but I hate it. I vastly prefer Sony Vegas, especially if you’re working with HD, surround sound, animation, or recording music. I prefer it over Garage Band too.

My position is that Windows sucks, but there’s a lot of great apps for it. If Vegas could run under Wine, that would be the perfect solution. Macs are decent nowadays, but I’ve been boycotting them for 13 years, and I’m not backing down now. I reccomend buying a used one; that way they don’t get any of your money.

(@ce) #17

don’t go with mac, it destroyed my inner child.

(bmax) #18

Not to forget WinMe, it’s still good ol’ FAT32.

(Clean3D) #19

Forgive me for not reading the entire thread.

I create better artwork on the mac. Don’t exactly know why. Perhaps it’s because the interface is so much cleaner on the mac. I don’t really think so much about the technical side when I’m on a mac.

Of course, when I’m on a PC, (most) everything is easier to install. The amount of software available is probably at least twice that of the mac (I can use Deep Paint! :)).

Hope this helps.

(Sago) #20

The right mouse button is my friend…

… can’t live without it.