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Imac 21.5" i5 or desktop windows 7 PC

McKenzie 12 22 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 6:41PM
My old desktop pc is begining to groan, its 5 years old and has only 1GB ram, (old ram is expensive and harder to find now) so I plan to replace it. I have looked at i3 & i5 processor Desktop Pc running Windows 7 with 6-8gb ram ... OR... an iMac i5 21.5" . The desktop tower replacement would coct me around 6-700, the iMac would be 999 .
I will obviously be editing photos but also general online stuff as well. I realise that the old windows software I have will not be compatible with the iMac

Any thoughts on this choice would be most welcome!


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I made the change a little over twelve months ago - from PC/Windows 7 to iMac 27" and have never never looked back - but that is purely my view and I know others will have a different opinion. Only you can decide which way you want to go but for my part no regrets at all for making the change! Lou
lawbert 11 1.8k 15 England
5 Jun 2012 7:01PM
We are in the same situation....And having been a PC user for countless years im leaning towards the ImacSmileWink
sherlob Plus
12 2.9k 129 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 7:02PM
Hi Steve,

Just to warn you that these threads seldom result in the even appraisal you may be hoping for. Rather it will likely turn into an opportunity for the Mac haters to point out all their faults - and how an equivalent spec'd PC is far far cheaper and superior in every way - I've seen similar threads turn quite ugly. Hence, this will be my only response here.

For what it is worth I switched to Mac a year or so ago. I can see strengths in both systems. However, I do tend to find that the Mac runs smoother when running the majority of software. I only seem to get issues when I use software like MS Office and Dragon. However, to be honest I used to find Dragon unreliable on a Windows platform too. I would also add that I favour the Mac interface. It did take some getting used to having used a PC for years, but now my heart sinks a little every time I go back to windows system (e.g. at work). Mac OS just seems to be a nicer place to be - and for me this was worth the extra outlay. Of course both comments are completely subjective and personal to my own experience.

I would add that if you are a student or a teacher you can get a very substantial discount on a Mac if bought form Apple (rather than one of their retailers). I saved nearly 200 on my Macbook Pro, and a further 250 on the 3 year support package.

Good luck...

Graysta 13 1.1k England
5 Jun 2012 7:55PM

Quote:but now my heart sinks a little every time I go back to windows system (e.g. at work). Mac OS just seems to be a nicer place to be

Nuff said
rogerfry 12 543 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 8:12PM
I switched to Mac some time ago, and have never regretted it. I imagine the PC brigade will shortly appear to say how much better/cheaper their choice is, but a lot of it is down to personal preference. Certainly most Mac users are happy with their choice, and the system is a joy to operate.

One word of advice....if you decide to go down the Mac route, have a look here before you rush out to buy, as it is fairly definite that most of the range will be updated, probably this month. One of the changes will be faster processors, which will be worth waiting for.

Hope that's of some help,

5 Jun 2012 8:23PM
I'm a graphic designer/photographer and have used Macs for years. They are more expensive but are better built than their PC equivalents. The whole philosophy of the Mac is based on smooth integration between hardware and software. You quickly set it up and then just get on with things. My iMac has lasted me over 6 years and it's only recently that I've hankered for a newer model with a more powerful processor. Other than that, it still works perfectly and will probably last for years to come. Get a Mac and I guarantee you won't regret it.
lobsterboy Plus
14 14.9k 13 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 8:39PM
None of the posts above have mentioned the shiny iMac screen - some people love them, some people cant get on with them.

Other than that there isnt really much difference, they will both get you where you want to go...
Though the Mac is more like an organised coach trip and the PC like independent travelling Wink
McKenzie 12 22 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 8:46PM
Thanks for all the feedback, I must admit I am drawn to the iMac more and more...its just taking that leap of faith LOL
mlewis 13 1.5k United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 9:06PM
See if you can go and play with an iMac in person to see whether the very shiny screen bothers you and if you actually prefer OSX over Windows. Then you can make a more informed decision.
redsnappa 15 2.0k United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 9:44PM
whatever system you get ensure is is a 64 bit system and ensure that it has at least of 8GB RaAM and room to expand on that. RAM is cheap these days so it's pointless skimping on such a critical part of any computer.

I've installed 16Gb RAM into my computer and it makes a huge difference in the spead photoshop and lightroom and manipulate and save large files.
5 Jun 2012 11:15PM
i have one of the imacs.. i LOVE it
strawman 14 22.1k 16 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2012 11:16PM
My view is go check out the screen it is the "glaring" Tongue issue with an Apple system. To my eyes the OS wars are over, little in it between the two. Obviously there are differences but in my view the applications are more important. Both get malware so on both use reputable firewall and virus scanning. also both use common components so protect yourself against the common failures such as hard disk failure.

Apple does have an all in one approach which sometimes is and advantage as it tends to have been checked working together but it also tries to lock you into key suppliers for media etc. In the future this could be very important.

So my eyes as the important bits
1 Get a 64 bit system with lots of RAM @ 8G RAM plus
2 Get a good matt monitor think quality and calibration first.
3 Make certain you have factored in backup solutions, at least a couple of external drives but if possible RAID drives configured for protection plus external drives
4 Get a monitor calibrator
5 Decent applications inc virus/firewall

And then look at brand and OS.

At the moment I am finding the cloud fairly handy, as I can have me EMAIL etc available from any web browser plus I can synch files to mobile devices etc and have my main PC synch with the updates automatically, pretty good if you use mobiles devices. And importantly if you go for an open solution you can pick and match rather than one supplier limiting your options.
User_Removed 14 3.3k 4 United Kingdom
6 Jun 2012 12:06AM
Agree with Strawman above. I think you can sometimes tell who has been editing their photos on one of those reflective screens, their images often look over-saturated and the contrast isn't quite right.
779HOB 6 1.2k United Kingdom
6 Jun 2012 12:41AM
Would also agree with Stawman and the money you save by not buying a MAC will help with the external back-ups and a decent matt monitor.

I used to have a MAC but when it got too old and slow to work with I changed to a PC and a decent monitor : reasons; cost and I didn't like the glossy monitors on the newer MACs. Result, I really don't miss the MAC at all.

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