The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #126646   Message #2815613
Posted By: Stu
19-Jan-10 - 04:27 AM
Thread Name: BS: PC or Mac nicely, please!
Subject: RE: BS: PC or Mac nicely, please!
As a graphic designer working both traditionally and in motion graphics, I've been a Mac user since they came out, and it's no exaggeration to say I've worked on virtually every model and even the clones they licensed for a while way back in the early 90's. I have also worked extensively on PCs running the exact same software in various studios, and feel it's really what you're going to use it for that makes a difference, and how involved in the techy side of things you want to get.

Firstly, I'm not a techy by any means and the reason I like Macs is because there's not a lot of faffing about with drivers etc; virtually every accessory I've used is plug and play straight out of the box. I have little idea of the inner workings of my Mac (although upgrading the RAM etc is a breeze), don't spend hours configuring it (I could if I wanted to) and simply get down to work straight away. I recently purchased a 27" iMac and had it on my network, the internet and rendering 3D animations in about as much time as it took to install the 3D software (and the screen - ooooo!), So they're minimal maintenance and last for years.

If you're thinking of doing anything creative such as Photoshop etc then get a Mac. PC's have this godawful jerky mouse driver thing still going on after all these years, and they can feel a little like a blunt instrument after working on a Mac. That said, this is one of those things you do get used to so it's very much a personal preference. The software runs the same on both and the differences are in the way the OS handles the interface etc.

However . . . as Jack said if it's games you're after the PC has far more to offer and PC's can be picked up cheaply, although you get what you pay for of course. There is a huge amount of cheap software for and PC's can offer very cost-effective solutions to some specific problems and if my company was going to buy a render farm it would be PC-based without a doubt (although I'd stick with a Mac server). PC's also do have a huge installer base which can provide support, but with a Mac you're less likely to need it. Of course just because most people use PC's doesn't make them better; remember betamax vs VHS? Beta was by far the most superior but VHS became the domestic standard and we all ended up watching rubbish quality videos until DVD arrived, and to this day AV pros laugh in the face of VHS and carry on using BetaSP etc for their filming and editing.

If you do decide on the Mac, seriously think about an iMac rather than a Mac Mini, and preferably one with an i5 or i7 processor as they go like stink and will last you years (did I mention the screens - oooo!).