Mac or PC?

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  01 January 2007
Mac or PC?

Hello again folks!

I'm about to buy a laptop and I was wondering what's preferable for photoshop. I've had pc pretty much all my life and I've never even touched a mac. I know that most graphic designers use Macs, saying it's more reliable and never crashes. On the other hand I've heard alot of digital artists use pc since it's faster when it comes to photoshop.

So what's best for digital artists? If there is a better half or just a matter of taste..
  01 January 2007
The new version of Photoshop (currently in Beta) on any of the new Macs is blisteringly fast. Like, seriously. S'amazing. So, once Adobe CS3 comes out, Mac is definitely the way to go.

I will concede that Photoshop CS2 is faster on PCs compared to the new (Intel) Macs, however, since it isn't natively coded. But that comparison is only going to be relevant until CS3 comes out.

  01 January 2007
Macs are just catching up with CS3...
i don't see why PS should be faster on mac with CS3 since both machines will use the same CPUs (if you put Intel Core 2 Duo in you PC)

Last edited by jimmy-paillet : 01 January 2007 at 11:52 PM.
  01 January 2007
Both PC's and Macs will do the job fine so you can't go too far wrong.

But for me the decision isn't about just photoshop or a processor. It's about productivity.

In business time is money. We use macs because we get less downtime. I have found time and time again that macs (while by no means perfect!) are the more stable machines.

I have a PC at home, it's a good machine - runs creative suite very well... but has plenty of niggles with drivers, crashes, more drivers, viruses, networking... etc. fine if you have the time to fanny about resolving these issues instead of work.

If you do choose Mac just don't get a 'Rev A' Model Mac (that's the first edition of a any new model) they always have problems!
Richard Rogers graphic designer | mac artworker

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Last edited by rikrog : 01 January 2007 at 12:45 PM.
  01 January 2007
I think the Mac/PC debate was valid 10 years ago. MAC was WAY ahead of the game, thus printers across the board invested in the Apple line. That helped to secure its footing in the art scene.

Windows 95 closed the divide in 1994(!). Bill Gates is the richest man in the world for a good reason. Microsoft has never completely sat on its laurels; Windows XP is pretty darn solid.

MAC people like to bring up the Virus issue a lot, as do UNIX dinosaurs.

A Windows system with daily update checks is the most secure system in the world on any given day as it is constantly battle tested. I don't want to get into the details of my resume but it includes computer skills and a Dept of Defense top secret clearence. Daily update is the key word. All major virus outbreaks in the last 5 years have been related to reverse engineered security updates...ironic to think that "the disease" is created from "the cure".

The Windows hardware market is brutally competitive. That is good for the consumer. Apple's newest top end (most expensive) is usually a slightly better performer than a $relative$ windows system at launch and surpassed within a short time(2-6 months). The midmarket systems show greater divides in the bang for buck department.

Ignore anyone who says this is faster than that unless they specify how they have come to that conclusion, time is funny like that. The most sensible photoshop head-to-head testing procedures usually involve an action script that weighs in around the 3-10 minutes. Unbiased testing is a hard thing to come by, the magazines are quite polarized. The dryer PC mags (weeee) are probably the best choice. Apple got caught padding tests with certain optimized filters back when the imac was launched. The speed department will always be close, but econ101 says that windows will usually edge out apple in benchmark scores vs. cost.

Apple is "cooler" and its line has VASTLY superior and innovative design. That is a real value for a lot of people (we live in a world where $250 jeans are justified by enough people to warrant them in the first place.) Apple's systems are beatiful

...for a computer.

My next computer will be an Apple, assuming my system doesn't implode, (I killed a system that I was overclocking, never again). This is because I want to round out my gear and abilities. I imagine my "power rig" will always be a windows system due to money though.

An Apple console/entertainment system or an i-wii would be cool...the new iphone kind of looses me though.
  01 January 2007
I've used and owned both macs and PCs over the years.

I would definately say hands down that you would get more productivity out of a mac. Having said that, if you have never touched a mac before initially you will find things slower as you would need to learn the OS.

Forget about actual photoshop speed on each system as this won't be an issue when CS3 comes out. A PC and a Mac with similar specs will run CS3 at a similar speed.

Macs do have an advantage over PCs in the RAM department. Windows XP has a ram limitation of something like 3gb I think. I realise there are ways of increasing this and alternate versions of windows (and vista) which get around this but I'm not trying to get into that debate.
I'm running 8gigs of ram on my mac with no dramas. Works straight out of the box.

Anyway, in the end its your decision and this is just my opinion.
I feel though that having used both OS's a lot I am qualified to be objective here.
I lot of Mac haters really haven't had much exposure to macs and find it unplesant because it is different to what they are used to.

Consider buying an intel mac which essentially is a PC which can run both windows and OSX.


  01 January 2007
True Whipyo... that is one Mac advantage I forgot about! Macs run both Windows and OSX.

Dammed useful feature! Which I wont see for a while as my old G5 tower is doing too gooder job to justify replacement.

...nice zebra by the way.
Richard Rogers graphic designer | mac artworker

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  01 January 2007
mac is made for designers. Handles color(Gamma) differently than PC. Also has less "Processes" going in background.
Macs are simple, and the Font book app is great for designers like me that collect 5million fonts.
It's little things like this, that make a mac a great tool for designers.
Nick Pitcavage
  01 January 2007
I think the question is pretty irrelavant these days. The difference between the two running photoshop is negligible. Go with whatever meets all your computer needs versus the cost and leave it at that.

Last edited by Piata : 01 January 2007 at 08:46 PM.
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