mac vs pc

I'm not going to even think of buying a mac. Why? Because I don't know of any way I could build one myself. But I am a curious guy and can't seem to find an unbiased opinion out there about which is better, the pc or the mac. Lets say you spend 2k on a mac and then spend 2k to build yourself a pc. Which is going to be better? (I'm having a "discussion" with one of my friends who is starting to turn towards a mac and I'm not so sure they are worth the extra money they seem to cost.)

It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
43 answers Last reply
More about tomshardware
  1. that depends on what application are you going to run on it.

    However, with the current PRO monitors, RAID, Graphics cards and better prices I think that the PC's are really taking some advantage over MAC's.

    I know some graphics designers and they are divided: some of them say "mac or nothing" and some others say: "todays PC's are OK for graphics"

    <b>(<font color=yellow>as good as it looks</font color=yellow>)</b>
  2. And then other graphics designers say PC or bust. I've tried Macs (the latest ones) and they are slower than hell in graphics compared to my system. It's rather pitiful really, for my system now is worth maybe 1.5K, whereas these were 5K machines.

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  3. wow. exactly what sort of graphics are we talking here?

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  4. Problem is they don't know how to build Macs. They simply have no imagination, no creativity INSIDE the box. It's all SDRAM, 128MB, poor Geforce 2 cards, little DirectX 8 presence, and speeds that just don't seem to scale. IIRC they were supposed to be over 1.5GHZ, but they're only at 2/3rd of it.
    I don't know why are they like this, they're worse than Rambus in getting better technologies OUT THERE.

    "Let Go." -Avril Lavigne
  5. they don't worth the extra money and they do break down just like wintel machines.

    Try both and see. Some people like MAC because it cost more and they like to have toys that cost more to show others they can have it, guess missing personality can be replaced with expensive toys to get attention in some circles. :wink:

    There is a few softwares that run better on MAC than Wintel, but if you don't use any of them then there is not one reason to bother changing from something you got to know well.

    They spend a fortune on advertising, they make it back on high priced products. :lol:

    <font color=red>Got a silent setup, now I can hear myself thinking.... great silence</font color=red>
  6. Let's see, I tried 3D graphics, 2D w/ Photoshop, and video editing. All of em sucked big time.

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  7. You won't get a straight answer here.

    <font color=red>God</font color=red> <font color=blue>Bless</font color=blue> <font color=red>America</font color=red>
  8. i think you can get a straight answer here, but not very informed. i doubt any one here has actually done any unbiased tests. that sounds like a job for!

    how do you shoot the devil in the back? what happens if you miss? -verbal
  9. MAC vs PC benchmarks, read it <A HREF="" target="_new">here</A>

    As you see, the dual Athlon is still the fastest PC we've tested, but the single Intel P4 2.53 GHz machine runs a close second, and even beats the dual Athlon on some of the tests. And, as expected, the Mac dual 1GHz G4 could not even come close to keeping up with these two PCs. Even though the P4 machine has only a single processor, it was easy for it to leave the dual-processor Mac far behind"

    <b>(<font color=yellow>as good as it looks</font color=yellow>)</b>
  10. Things have changed

    Newest Macs have DDR now, no single processor systems available, Geforce 4MX is standard and Radeon optional.

    OS X is preloaded now. The case is trick and has wireless and gigabit capabilites out of the box.

    Macs run photoshop/illustrator/quark/ applications better due to the dual CPU w/ quad altavec in the G4 CPU. Not much in terms of games and the selection of software that is available on the PC.

    Apple has enough business to survive, they continue to develop new products even though they are behind by almost a year in technology.

    It is possible to overclock the CPU by pulling the CPU and bridging the jumpers on the bottom side increasing the multiplier not th FSB.

    The new Imac is a laptop in that silly round case. was an easy conversion reducing production costs and sticking with standard hardware available.

    You are limited to what your mind can perceive.
  11. I have to admit, macs have some cool and handy features, but the performance you get isnt that great. My freind and I had a lond discussion about what is better and we calculated that you could build the fastest athlon or P4 system for about half as much and that is with the sam amount of ram and dual cpu's. Personally, I would never spend money on a mac. You cannot customize them (case mods and such) as easy, you cannot upgrade them and they dont run as much software. The only reason i would ever buy one is because of the dual 23" displays I could run. That would be tight!

    If an orange was driving a racecar would it peel out?
  12. Quote:
    Newest Macs have DDR now, no single processor systems available, Geforce 4MX is standard and Radeon optional.

    While the newest G4's do use DDR memory, the FSB of the PPC G4 processor is still SDR, only the L3 backside cache uses a DDR channel and that has its own dedicated DRAM memory to feed it. In short, it doesn't help that much.

    Macs run photoshop/illustrator/quark/ applications better due to the dual CPU w/ quad altavec in the G4 CPU.

    The benchmarks over at (someone listed another one above) says differently. The P4's SSE2 units are a lot more versatile and useful than AltiVec ever was or is. When you're dealing with precision applications that take heavy use of 64-bit FP math, AltiVec becomes useless as it cannot handle 2x 64-bit FP SIMD vectors, only 4x 32-bit. SSE2, on the other hand, can.

    "We are Microsoft, resistance is futile." - Bill Gates, 2015.
  13. Macs have always been geared to graphic and video pros. My graphics design buddies all use macs simply because that is what they have been trained on at school and because it is the industry standard. The graphics industry has traditionally been rooted in the mac platform. This is apparent as mac systems come out of the box properly calibrated for graphics use (color temperature match).

    Of course, another target of macs are those who think macs are so easy to use.

    Design aesthetics win points too (and adds to the price I imagine).

    Games are also lacking on macs, though this is changing somewhat. Choices are limiting in many ways also. As you said, you can't really build a mac.

    Quality is better than name brand, even regarding beloved AMD.
  14. interesting article there. I was suprised to see the dual mp 2000+ perform so well. I was also suprised that the single P4 could do so well but I suppose those applications must have been memory intensive???

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  15. hahaha.
    Dont even bother with MAC. I love all the pretentious MAC users who believe that their system is so superior to PCs. It makes me laugh. PCs are faster , less expensive, more customizeable, have more hardware available, have more software available and are generally faster. Mac used to dominate the graphics industry and I stll see people desperately clinging to that idea. (sad really)
    Sadly is that Apple just caught onto the idea of dual processors a little less than a year ago, PCs have been doing it since what NT? I have used Apple machines and they have crashed plenty of times they are not these invulrenable user friendly machines that they try to make themselves out to be.
    I also love all those apple "switch" ads where they take some moron who is too dumb to work a computer and blames it all on the PC. "Oh my PC was so confusing I didnt know what was going on how do you open microsoft word? Oh my god it's so confusing!" LOL
    Also think of upgrading, with a PC you might actually have to <gasp> open up your case and swithch out a video card. With a mac you just throw away your whole tangerine/blueberry imac and drop a few thousand on another one.

    -Bill D.

    Rock me Amadeus,

    Bill D.
  16. Quote:
    interesting article there. I was suprised to see the dual mp 2000+ perform so well. I was also suprised that the single P4 could do so well but I suppose those applications must have been memory intensive???

    I would say it's SSE2. As I mentioned above, the ability to do 2x 64-bit FP Vectors is incredibly useful in video editing programs. But when you come down to it, does it matter why it's faster?

    "We are Microsoft, resistance is futile." - Bill Gates, 2015.
  17. That's funny though, cause a friend of mine uses Adobe Premeire on his Mac, and he has to go to the menus, select, so forth. W/ pc, right click, select, done. Most mac users don't know how to setup their comp to use different mice, plus it dun go with the styling. Then for 3d apps, last time I checked, many of em had the same interface as on PC, so I don't see what the dilio. Furthermore, Macs aren't stable, hell, my friend has lost numerous prjects b/c his system crashed. My XP system is fine so far, and I've been running XP for quite a while now (only time system dies is when there's a power outage). IMO, the guys who use Mac just want some dumb pretty interface, and turn off any possibility that they can use Windows b/c they think it's too hard and thuse refuse to learn.

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  18. For the majority of us we will never take that step backwards and use a mac. We are all spoiled on x86 based systems and we have tasted the wide variety of software and hardware available.

    Mac is faster in the above applications, I use both and have benched side by side 533 G4 vs 3.1Ghz Rambus P4.

    You are limited to what your mind can perceive.
  19. Macs are far from stable, I agree. I find more software/OS errors than hardware problems.

    You are limited to what your mind can perceive.
  20. "turn off any possibility that they can use Windows b/c they think it's too hard and thuse refuse to learn."

    Ya but isn't that the majority of people in the world? lol!

    umm yes macs suck. Especially when you have to spend 5000 dollars everytime your system gets to slow because you can't upgrade it where i can just spend 300 bucks and pop in a faster chip for a PC. PC means modulairity! ok maybe not .... *shrugs*

    it's almost a DUH how much macs suck! common use a brain! lol!

    Life is irrelivent and irrational.

    <A HREF="" target="_new"> My Rig </A><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by xxsk8er101xx on 10/21/02 08:38 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  21. Amen to upgrades!!

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  22. I second that!

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  23. Oh come on, you're supposed to go "I hear ya brotha!!":) Once held an entire sermon on how camping is a natural evil in counterstrike while playing for fun hehehehe.

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  24. I'm afraid I haven't developed online "flavor" just yet. I'm from the NH. not exactly the multicultural capital of the world. But I can say things like:
    "That is whack!!!"
    "Bling!! Bling!!"

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  25. lol. Ight, das cool. I grew up in da hood see.:)

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  26. you ever heard the big L song "ebonics"? if not I reccommend giving it a listen. Big L has a lot to teach the world; it's too bad he had to leave it so early.

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  27. I concur, though I don't want to offend those who chose macs.

    My sis uses a mac and gets that little bomb picture enough times to dispel its stability. Once you get an error, it's much harder to troubleshoot than a pc for which their is a wealth of information on the net about.

    I personally loathe the finder too. You have to go the finder everytime you wanna switch apps. Then that darned one button mouse. Actually, macs are finally wiseing up and making scroll and the "confusing" three button mouse.

    I wonder if has anything to do with right brained (artistis) versus left brained (logical) people!? I'm sure I'll get flamed for that comment.

    I'm excited that future mac oses may run on pcs. More oses mean for choices and competition for the pc users. Hopefully the consumer will have better oses because of it instead of being confined platform dependent oses.

    The easy pc and stable idea is a myth. Mac users simply dish out tons of money to have an "expert" come in "fix" their computers. Yeah, it's service at premium and very unfriendly to the DIY'er.

    I urge my buddies to switch to a pc, but they can't because their afraid they'll be estranged by the graphics industry. Exactly what Mac wants.

    The only redeeming quality is that a graphics artist doesn't have really configure there system for color correction as much with Pcs. But this may not be so important except for those that really need accurate color matching (i.e. printing companies). The actual designers usually send the image to the printer along with pantone colors specified by client. I guess those printing people will really need the color matching. Anyways, it's not so hard to configure a PC (there's tons of information and software on how to do that).

    There is also an inferiorty complex associated with mac collective consciousness. Just look at the ads. One ad (kensignton touch pad scroll mouse ad) talks about a mouse that is exclusive for macs and not for pcs. Uhmm... didn't the pc first use multibutton mice?

    Another thing I don't like about macs is the aesthetics over performance appeal. Boustin acoustics or some other hi-fi company makes this really cool looking system that is basically crap in terms of sound. Yet mac lovers drool over it.

    Besides the establishment in the graphics industry and aesthetically cheerful appeal, there isn't much going for it. The establishment, IMHO, is like imprisonment.

    Quality is better than name brand, even regarding beloved AMD.
  28. I run an AMD system because of the price/performance advantage. I could be convinced to spend more money to buy an Intel system based on their superior performance at the moment. But you could argue t'ill you're blue in the face before I'd spend even more money to get a Mac and downgrade in performance.

    The Men Behind the GUNS!

    <A HREF="" target="_new"><b>MY SYSTEM</b></A>
  29. YOu're not suggesting I'm arguing for a mac are you? Quite the contrary. Besides the obvious performance(what, barely over a gig or something?) lacking, macs lack in so many more important other ways, but hangs by its graphics/video base it's built up over the years. Yet even that seems to be weakly hanging. PC program equivalents are already here, the graphics/video industry just needs to make the jump.

    Trust me, artists are trained on macs, at least a few years ago (don't know if it's still true as much as I see great windows photoediting software).

    Mac users aren't usually tech savy and performance hungry like pc enthusiasts. They buy for different reasons. Usually job necessity or worse, for ostensibly buying the "easy to use" pc.

    How many mac tweakers do you hear about?? My sister won't let me open the case! She thinks somethings going to break. Mac is more an appliance than a hobby. It's not even a question of mac or pc when it's discussed among computer jocks. Macs are really a nice looking and expensive prefabricated package, not a DIY kit. The very concept of the mac inhibits tinkering, though it may change. Mac may just be about OS and not proprietary hardware. Macs may just be another os rather hardware. It's already seen with the IDE compatibility with the new macs. A new os competing more directly with M$ may foster os improvements that benefit the consumer. Sounds risky for macs. The hardware (at least appearance) as well as software has defined macs for the artistic masses.

    Quality is better than name brand, even regarding beloved AMD.
  30. Quote:
    I wonder if has anything to do with right brained (artistis) versus left brained (logical) people!? I'm sure I'll get flamed for that comment

    I'm a graphic artist. We're not all stupid. Really! :wink:

    In all seriousness, I use my P4 system at home for all my graphics needs and its about 6x the speed of the horrible iMacs we use at school. A buddy of mine has a dual G4 system that cost him nearly $6000 CDN, and my P4 that I built myself for $1200 performs at twice the speed in 2D apps (photoshop), 3D apps, and video editing apps.

    Plus, my friend isn't really going to be able to upgrade his G4 without spending a fortune.

    Plus, he's got a shitty 3d card (GF2). Yes, the newest G4's provide GF4MX. Everyone here has surely read about the MX in GF4MX and why it's a horrible card. You'd think for a system costing >$5000 they'd at least have a better video card then an MX?

    Plus, I can play games, the only demanding thing I do as much as graphics. My buddy who does graphics on his G4 needs to own a seperate PC for games.

    Plus, (I'm at school right now on one of those godforsaken iMacs) i HATE this keyboard and mouse! The keyboard is cramped together like a laptop keyboard (only true on iMacs though, not G4s), and the one button mouse is killing me.

    My final opinion on macs; they've got some good technological ideas, IN THEORY. Cuz in theory G4 should be destroying PC CPUs, since it does a lot more in every cycle. But their clock speeds are so slow, their bus is SDR, their memory sucks, their... you get the picture. They're too far behind.

    Then there's those stupid switch ads. People who are just too retarded to use a computer switch to a mac, it becomes easy (and doesn't do anything useful), therefore everyone should switch to mac? Riiiggght...

    Okay, lets say most of the world drives an Audi everywhere. Nice engine, no? But in this alternate universe, it takes a bit of learning to figure out how to drive one, and they're not that fancy looking, just simple. Then someone makes a car with the engine of a Toyota Corolla (or some other cheap car) that looks fancy (bubbly blue plastic anyone?) and is easy to learn to use, but as a result has few fancy features. Should everyone switch to the pretty, easy, low-power new car?

    Yeah, well, there's my two cents (and probably a third and fourth).

  31. I know the analogy you are trying to get at here and I would say that the audi is a manual while the mac is an automatic.

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  32. I am a Graphic Artist and I work almost exclusively on PCs.
    Yes there is quite a huge mac-snob factor in the industry.
    I prefer PCs as you can do much more with them. Every single one of Adobe's products run on both mac and pc.
    I originally went the way of PC because I was interested in 3d programs and up until last year macs had sh*t for 3d packages. I bet the new OSX is going to be faster and more stable than previous mac systems but thats because its not apple technology anymore. Its now a GUI for unix!
    So many (especially Crapple fans) coomplain and whine about how Microsoft is a monopoly and its unfair and blah blah blah...
    Hypothetically switch the tables and lets say that macs are in 85% of homes instead of windows machines. Now those computers not only have an OS from apple but you must rely and buy all your hardware from apple as well. Microsoft is only an OS, you can build your pc out of parts from 20 different stores. Who's the monoply here?
    Check out this apple switch parody:

    Rock me Amadeus,

    Bill D.
  33. I normal glance through network world mag, a week or two ago, one of the columns was on macs and thier advertising of late. They commented on how the girl saved christmas with her mac and stuff. It was interesting that the camera wasn't even out last christmas. But anyways, in this weeks issue, all the editorials were from angry mac users saying "how dare you speak bad about macs!". They were trying to sound intellegent and computer savy, but it was quite apparent that they are not. They proceded to say how nice their macs are and blah blah blah. Mac users for the most part seem pretty ignorant to me for the most part.

    <font color=blue>Unofficial Forum Cop</font color=blue>
  34. ok, so i went to download that video posted above, and it requires that stupid quick time! that is another thing about macs, they have so much propriatary hardware and software that it makes them useless. So if you are a mac user, then all you can do is graphics and all you spend is 2-4 times as much money for a machine that can't do nearly as much stuff as a home pc. When I was talking to my hardcore mac friend, he said he would rather spend his money on a mac. He is a pretty big gamer to, so he wants to spend $5000 on a dual g4 system because it will give him really good performance, but by the time he saves up for it, well the next generation wont be that much faster, but still. I just dont undertand why you would want a computer that is meant for graphics and doesnt even do that well in it. I have to admit though, they do have a cool looking UI and pretty good cpu architecture, but they dont follow through on all the other areas that would make them worth wile.

    If an orange was driving a racecar would it peel out?
  35. Yeah. A company whose products cater almost exclusively to those who want a product that is "easy to use" and consider that a higher priority then all else is bound to wind up with a majority of mostly computer illiterate users. This is a financial decision, really, and not an insult, but it is true.

  36. You've got the point exactly. A good CPU architechture surrounded by crap componants just doesn't work.

    It'd be like if VIA (or some other chip maker) announced a new chipset for quad UltraSPARCII CPUs on a single board, offering ATA-33 IDE controllers, two SIMM memory banks, and a single ISA slot. Umm, thanks, but no thanks.

  37. Good call! That adds quite nicely to my analogy. :smile:

  38. Quote:
    YOu're not suggesting I'm arguing for a mac are you?

    If you were, I'd call the exorcist!:)

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  39. Bad analogy. Audi is luxury class and Toyota is economical class. They target different sectors of the car consumer market. It would be like comparing a Geforce 2mx to a radeon 9700. I get your point though.

    "If you sign up for AOL now, we'll give you 1024 hours of slow service and disconnects free of charge"
  40. my friend is not convinced. i think he has been brainwashed. he likes to throw all kinds of numbers at me that i don't know if he can back up. i'm afraid i can't convince him to turn away from the dark side.

    It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.
  41. Name and address is all I need....I know one who will take the evil spirit out of him....

    What if you had admin rights to life?
  42. Let him buy a Mac if he wants. When he can't play 99% of the games out there, you can laugh in has face.

    "We are Microsoft, resistance is futile." - Bill Gates, 2015.
  43. imgod2u has the point in general... but if he starts throwing numbers at you, take some notes from my post and any of the others, and challenge him to back it up. Once you get into real facts it'll quickly become apparant that the PC is more powerful, then if he's a hardcore mac lover he'll pretend the technical discussion never happened and fall back on an excuse like "Mac OS is more stable" (LOL) or "Microsoft is a monopoly I do not want to contribute to" or "Macs are the industry standard in graphics" (even though you've just finished proving why they're inferior).

Ask a new question

Read More

CPUs Build Macintosh