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I have a Sony Vaio 2.6 MHZ with a gig of Ram, a Mac 8500 180mhz, A G5 1.8 Mhz with 2 gigs of Ram and a Mac Mini (office stuff only) with 512 mgs of ram.
I am saving up for a Dual mac system once I can justify my CS2 upgrade.
I've been a PC user for the last several years. For sign related stuff, Windows and Intel/AMD-based PCs are perfectly fine. It's also arguably best to do web development and web design on Windows-based systems since they display color differently and use different system fonts.
However, I am seriously considering the purchase of a dual processor Mac for my next home desktop system. I have a new Dell notebook and my aging Dell desktop PC still works fine for most purposes. The addition of a Mac would be good for my freelance print-based work and also for video and motion graphics work I would like to pursue. I can do a lot of those things on a PC.
The only problem with buying a Mac is high cost. The CPU tower alone with some decent options (like at least 2GB of RAM) easily goes over $3000 or $4000. Apple's monitors are arguably too expensive. Dell has a new 24" widescreen monitor $500 less than Apple's Studio Cinema Display and with better reviews. New software could nearly double the cost, certainly with adding Adobe's CS2 package and Apple's Production Suite. Overall, I'm looking at a cost over $6000 to get a Mac system configured the way I need it.
Obviously I need to see enough of an advantage from a business standpoint (not the silly Mac versus PC performance arguments) to justify the purchase. What kind of business opportunities can I expect to gain from having a computer running Final Cut Pro? It's kind of a scary thing. It really gets scary if you want to consider adding a lot of video production hardware (cameras, lighting, sound, etc.) into the mix.
There are trends of businesses adding video displays into POP settings, buying message centers capable of displaying graphics and video, but without the knowledge needed to produce the content and do it well. Some of the trends in the economy put some of this possible growth into question. In the meantime, I'm just saving money and trying to make sense out of the situation.
I've been using a 1.5 gig Pentium 4 (runs plotter) and a 1.33 gig Athlon (design/office) for a number of years. They run Windows 2000 and XP Home. My wife's machine is an AthlonXP 1900+ which is somewhat faster and runs XP Pro. All machines have 2) 512mb memory modules in them. The AthlonXP has PC2700 DDR the others PC133 SDRAM. Two video cards are GeForce2 MX-400's in my machines with 32 mb SDRAM. The wife's machine has Radeon 7500 with 64 mb of DDR. Two muchines have WD 80 gig drives with 8mb cache. One has WD 60 gig with 2 mb of cache.
They aren't rockets. That's for sure. The do serve us well. I'm adding another 512mb to the Pentium 4 as I plan on getting an inkjet plotter in the next few weeks.
I have a laptop with a Celeron 366 and Windows 98se. I've upgraded that to 128mb within the past year. This is my oldest computer. I bought it used 2 years ago from a friend for $200. If I was looking to replace anything, it would be this old laptop, as it is about 6 years old and I'm suprised it still works at all.
Been in computers since the Commodore VIC 20/ Timex Sinclair 2000. Moved up to an Amiga 2000 (bundled with a toaster) then the IBM PC in the early 90's. I still have a new Commodore VIC 20 in the original packaging . . . I'm such a geek!
Oh, and by the way, the processor speeds should be GHz . . . told you I was a geek. Last time I ran anything as slow as 2.5 MHz was in the early 90's, hehehehe (A la OP)
Although I replied as being PC faster than 2.5GHz, I guess 'technically' that is not 100% true. I am running an AMD64 3000+ which I think really clocks at like 1.8GHz. The rest is 1GB of dual-channel PC3200 DDR RAM on a Gigabyte MB and also a Gigabyte ATI Radeon 9600 Pro vid card pushing a somewhat older Sylvania 19" CRT. I also have a 108MBs wireless network that works pretty good.
Have been involved with 'puters for many years now, I guess going on like 20 or better - OMG can that be true!?!? Started playing with Apples, and then finally got our own 8088 PC in like '89 or so with a smokin' 30MB hard drive and 640K of RAM. Hard drives in that day were kinda rare if memory serves, cuz all ya really needed was the 5-1/4" floppies, right? It ALSO had a 3.5" floppy - perty kewl, eh?
Have built several over the years, but just for personal/biz use so far (not for profit, but could I s'pose).
2 Months ago I purchased a new Dell XPS G4 with 4 gig's of ram. I have not been pleased to get a message " Cannot Copy, Not Enough Memory" when trying to copy and paste some things. Also runs slow doing mask, outline and contour cut effects with some of the Aurora Graphic fills. So to speed me up I just ordered a Mac G5 Dual 2.5 system and then today I realized hey "My Flexisign and Colorip is not going to work on my MAC system". Now what?
I read somewhere that you can purchase some type of software and it will allow most PC programs to run on a mac. Has any heard of this before?
Here is the list of software coming with the new G5 and maybe that software is on this list. Most of this stuff is things that I know nothing about.
Adobe Reader 5.0
Adobe Go Live 6.0
Adobe Go Live CS
Adobe Illustrator 10
Adobe Illustrator CS
Adobe Indesign 2.0
Adobe Photoshop 7.0
Adobe Photoshop CS
Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0
Adobe Premiere 6.5
Art Directors tool Kit 3
Corel graphics 11
DP4 (Digital performer 4)
DVD Studio Pro 2
Filemaker Pro 6
Final Cut Express 2
Final Cut Pro HD
Graphic converter 4.4 US
I use PC's , Started building them in the early 90's, I dont have a problem with MAC's its just that PC's are cheaper.. more bang for the buck. And all the cool software that was mac ony (adobe stuff) is now for both . so I dont see the extra $$$ for a mac..
What Derf wrote is true. You're just needing an emulation software package. He mentioned Virtual PC which is perfect for what you're talking about. Just remember what he said about the ram; Doing the VPC thing is (I'm sure you've heard) like running one computer within another. Resource intensive. So make sure you have plenty of resource.
I do all of my sign work on a PC P4 3.2GHz with a gig of ram.
I run a Dell Latitude laptop P3 650MHz machine at home with 512M of ram.
Ah, and then there're my Macs. I have an original Mac Classic, a Mac Color Classic, (Still running music sequencing software on it as recently as last night)
a Mac pizza, a Power PC 6200 with Freehand 8 (obviously haven't ran any graphics stuff on it for a while), and one of the original G3's that came out before all of the blue tower versions. It's still in the beige case with the staggered shape to it.
Using a Dell Dimension 1100 with 1 gig ram, P4 3 GHZ, Windows XP to run FlexiPro for the Mutoh printer and the Graphtec plotter. Using a G5 iMac for design work(photoshop, Illustrator), and an old G3 700 iMac up front for the customer show and tell. They still love to see those things.
I've always thought you should use the best tool for the job, and everyone has their own idea of the best tool.
PC All the way! I got spoiled quite a bit when I was hired and asked what kind of system I wanted for design/production. Being new to the sign biz, I just picked the fastest of everything:
AMD Athlon 64 3500
4gigs DDR400 RAM
74Gig Western Digital Raptor
Matrox Parhelia PCI-X (I'm not very familiar with this chipset. I understand it's a favourite for graphics pros)
Dual Viewsonic P220F 22" monitors at 1600x1200/85Hz
And a bunch of enhancements to make it look as fast as it goes. I plan on laying some vinyl on the side of the case, so I'll be sure and post it when I'm done.
i used both but now just use pcs.. can't see what all the fuss about macs is about. sure the boxes and interface is a bit prettier.
but for workin, i got adobe cs2, quark and everything else a mac can do on my little old XP pc. mac users come in, i open their file and they don't know it's a pc most of the time, mainly cos of the sony monitor