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Hello all, I've got a burning question.
I have been running Photoshop and a Wacom Intuos 3 on my laptop for some years now. Well lately my laptop of six years is bogging down and the constant battle between my laptop keyboard and Wacom tablet is out of control. The screen is only 15 inches and not the best quality. So it is time to upgrade I think.
So the burning question is as the title says: Mac or PC, which should I buy?
I have long heard the a Mac is the way to go for digital art, is this true? If so, why?
Is a PC acceptable? A selling point for a PC is that I already own Photoshop CS for it. If I go with a pc, should I get a tower or a laptop. Either way I would have dual monitors.
We're not in 1994 anymore, both platforms are fine. Good components make the computer, it's really up to you.
As for laptops they all have TN panels and therefore awful quality for color work, even the +$1500 ones, save a few tablet PC's which have IPS panels.
Buy a mac if you want to pay more for the same hardware. That is the situation it is now since they swapped over to intel chips. Oh and Apples corporate motto ought to be "Pay More get Less Freedom"
I just came off of a 5 year Mac addiction, I went back to PC for several reasons one of them being the most obvious, I would just have to run bootcamp on mac anyway to use some of the software I was starting to learn 5 years ago.
Buy what fits your budget and your needs, neither is any better or worse than the other. Just the prestige is different.
Either, I'd say, although I've only ever owned a PC. A PC is perectly acceptable for digital art. I use mainly Photoshop, Painter and recently a few 3D programs. With many of the updates, there have been issues with the Mac OS. And of course a few excellent painting programs are Windows only.
Go PC and use the difference in cost to move up to CS5.
OK, so PC it is!
Thanks for the quick replies.
And thanks to Portus for pointing out IPS monitors.
Funny, I get the impression of backlash on Apple. Are they falling out of favor?
As per my opinion, PC is the best option against Mac. Because, if any problem will arise than you can get instant solution for that. Also, it is widely used so there is no problem at all. It is the best option for you.
I'm a huge mac fan (because I do audio work mostly, and pc's are crap at that compared to macs) but I choose to go with my PC for graphics apps. It's basically due to the fact that there's more software for the PC these days. And graphics apps don't really demand anything from the hardware or the OS. Where audio interfacing is absolutely horrible on the PC (drivers dropping out every once in a while, that sort of stuff) and rock solid on the mac - You really get none of that with graphics apps. It's not like your gfx card will just crap out a few times a day on either platform.
The "same hardware bladibla more costly" arguement the pc users claim is kind of bogus, though. If you have no need for a good mouse / keyboard combo, or a decent monitor or wlan or webcam, then yes, that arguement is valid. But if you're going to go the "equal hardware" route, you have to put that stuff into the equation. the macs have awesome mouse and keyboard. They have very nice monitors, and they have decent built in sound, wifi, and webcam.
But again. iMac or PC, depends on how fancy you want your desktop to look and what kind of software you want to use. I'd still go for a PC no matter how much I love macs. If you know how to build computers, or know a dude who can build one for you free/cheap, build a PC with crappy keyboard/mouse and no wifi and just save on anything but CPU and Ram, and get yourself a Cintiq 12WX or something. That way you won't even need a monitor. And you'll come out at about the same price as an iMac or a low to mid range gamer PC.
edit: Forgot to add that if you go for a mac, get the apple care package with it. Can't remember what the price is, but it is worth it. If you're unlucky and your mac craps out, the apple care thing basically lets you chuck your mac in the door at the nearest apple store and they fix it post haste free of charge. I've had nothing but good experience with that plan, but I'm sure it varies from store to store.
Last edited by cassus; September 7th, 2010 at 01:57 PM. Reason: forgot to mention something
I think that since people now can build their own PCs and make more choices with what they want, it can cause an unfavorable response towards (macs in) a more cost conscious market.
There are those that don't feel a "we know what's best for you" attitude that Apple sometimes brings.
That being said there is something said for the stability of certain programs like Photoshop on a Mac. But as you said as the range of software choices and especially nice freeware out there are more dominant on the PC market than Mac it's not surprising that the lines have definitely blurred since the mid to late 90's on what platform is best.
Yeah, I'm not really doubting people having their reasons for bashing macs, but it's really fashionable right now, and everyone is joining in. Especially guys who never used a mac in the first place. That was what I ment when I said it was fashionable.
Can't really go wrong either way, but if you want to get the most out of your money, try to do what I said earlier by going for a good cpu (AMD will be your best bet for saving money, the new 6core cpu's are pretty cheap, as are the older 4 core cpus, 965 black is what I have now, and I can run all painting apps totally smooth with no stuttery brushes until I reach a brush size of 250+ on very demanding brushes.) and some nice ram (I have 4 gigs of 1000mhz ram) and then consider a cintiq instead of an ordinary display.
I got the cintiq 12WX myself, and initially I thought it was going to be too small, cause it really is quite petite, but it's very capable. Once the new 21UX'es stop being sold out everywhere I might sell my 12 and get one of those just for the intuos 4 tech. Seems quite a lot of people are doing this, and because of that there are LOTS of used 12WX'es being sold, so you might strike a hell of a deal on a used one right now.
Anyways, hope you find some of this useful. Have fun creating
AMDs are okay (I'm not bashing AMD because they are great for a bargain). If you're going for 2d illustration there's no problem with it. 6cores really doesn't make this radical difference. 4 cores actually doesn't do much either. Mainly because most 2d illustration programs aren't taking advantage of multi cores. In fact, there's been a number of reports of CS5 users having issues with AMD chips. They have also bombed against the icore due to threading tech. AMDs still seem to be the fastest at running games.
As I've said to people before, a new computer (clean install) is generally a fast computer. It only slows down due to poor housekeeping, and this goes for AMD and Intel. I only recommend Quads for future investment reasons, but if someone wants to use a Dual Core processor for just running things like Painter and PS they'll be fine. It's more of the investment for 5 years as tech progresses.
Last edited by Arshes Nei; October 14th, 2010 at 06:55 PM.
I ran a Mac for 5-6 years and was constantly frustrated with the dearth of software for it. There were applications I was used to using in WIN that there was no equivalent in Mac. Additionally when I was going to get a new system, I really had a lot of trouble paying a much higher rate for the same hardware and then ultimately the experience of "push a button and it works". All that did was dumb me down it seems, I have to relearn a ton of computer related things now because I never had to deal with them on mac. Terrible situation I tell you!
Do you plan on using your computer for any other reason?
A pc will give you more more in terms of compatibility, and provide alot more options as far as programs. (plus cheaper and if you wanna play the occasional game too!)
if all you plan on using it for is photoshop, and surfing the web etc, and don't mind paying a higher price, then a mac might not be a bad option. OS X is much more stable than windows in my experience.
it's really up to you!
personally i said screw em both and have removed both windows and mac from my life and have made the full switch to linux. GIMP does the trick as far as digipainting goes. and if i really need to i can run potoshop in wine. or you can always dualboot! just another option for you!
If you want no stressful times and have the financial supplies for a mac, get a mac. If you are short on cash and want to play games with more supported software may as well get a PC. Both are good though macs are more stable.
PC user - 17 years
Mac user - 6 Years
Last edited by viizi; December 11th, 2010 at 07:43 PM.
Hello all, thanks for the many helpful replies.
Well the event I was dreading came to pass. Yes, you may have guess, the Blue Screen o' Death! It was actually the FIRST time it had ever happened to me in all the years I've used a pc which started with 95 (actually it was windows 3 but that was my dads computer so it doesn't count). It seems a config file needed to boot into windows became corrupt and caused an endless reboot cycle.
What is worse, I had a cover illo I'm working on still on the hard drive and I hadn't backed it up that week. Yes, total suckfest to say the least. Luckily for me I had the sense to throw a live linux cd in and booted into linux (LinuxMint 7 to be specific) which successfully read the hard drive allowing me to save that file and many others onto a usb stick. I recommend every pc user have a copy of a live linux cd or bootable usb stick on hand.
Windows was a complete loss, had to reformat and reinstall. Funny though, it runs much smoother now.
So ironically this has given me more reasons to want to stay with the pc, because there is always the option to switch to linux which I have become re-enamored with.
Has anybody run photoshop through WINE before?
you can run linux on a mac too. The reason your computer runs faster is because it is NTFS so after a while the hdd becomes cluttered and sources all over the place for things. On a mac you get the beauty of unix which you get the journalled drives. You can use your mac for 100 years and it will still run as smoothly as if you formatted or got a factory fresh computer. 17 years PC and 6 years OS X. Countless bluescreens and no mac problems to date
Why run Linux on a Mac? A Mac is already Unix. Pull up a terminal window sometime...It's the same stuff I run at work...on a AIX, HP-UX, Solaris, or RedHat server.
I made the switch to Mac 3 years ago. I got tired of all of the virus', spyware, etc on the Windows platform.
I don't know anything about the "lack of freedom" of a Mac. i think I was less free on a Windows PC. i also found myself spending more time trying to make things work. With my Mac, I just plug in the new hardware or software and start working. It has, honestly, saved me a bunch of time. In fact, I am getting ready to buy my next Mac, a 21 in iMac. Can I buy a cheaper PC? Certainly. But, in order to build the PC I want, and need...i would spend about the same amount of money, honestly. And I would still have all the virus issues, etc. I won't have that with my new Mac.
Bash all you want...I stopped listening to it. Microsoft burned me out years ago. No, I'll stick with my Mac, running Unix. Hell, my 3 year old Mac runs rings around the PC the just bought me for work...and that PC has a bigger processor and more RAM. LOL
Yeah, just a matter of time before the first mac-fanboy appeared.
Anyhow, the reason Apple has been getting a lot of hate recently is mainly because people woke up.
With all the new iThinagmajigs, like iPhones and iPods, Apple got a lot more market share and in the end, a lot of people that has no clue about technology started buying it.
Especially on the phone market, all the "bimbos" and "bros" etc that I know went straight for the iPhone because "it was the new shit", and later, I heard all about their "new macs" etc thinking it's "best" since it's from Apple.
Just because of the popularity, other people started stating facts like that PCs are much cheaper and offer more freedom and all that.
Thus starting the old mac-vs-pc war again, but this time more of the technology-impaired (i.e. people that don't really know about computers) joined in, and I believe that people who dislike "bimbos and bros" as I refer them to (of course this differ from location to location) start bashing apple on principle. And because usually, mac-fantasts always talk about their system being superior, especially those with no clue. As the old saying goes, "Windows users can do one thing that Mac users can't; shut the f**k up!"
I have always disliked Macs and Apple. And all the mac-fantast arguments really fall short. Macs are NOT in any way safer than PCs, it's just that black hats attack PCs just because of the larger market share, I expect us to see a lot more viruses/trojans/spyware/etc for the mac now with the rising popularity, especially since it's software is more vulnerable.
Anyhow, a good way to describe the mac-vs-windows debate is this:
I love it when the PC fanboys get sweaty in these threads and start swearing
""Windows users can do one thing that Mac users can't; shut the f**k up!""
It just proves they are hurting lol
it's ok it is just a machine you don't have to commit suicide if someone buys a mac k.
Ok, so the last 2 posts above me were juvenile the rest at least were worth listening to
too true but just a simple sum up reply to the one above me.
Am I correct to presume that you mean to buy another laptop, and not a desktop?
If so, then I'd go with a Sager, or an Asus G73[JW] - JW due to the Nvidia card, and the perks you get in graphics programs from this.
I personally have a G73JW and a Sager 8760 (long story).
For about the same price as those two combined, you can get a Mac with a lesser graphics card, and a single hard drive, and no blueray option.
Each of those "PC" options come with a cam and altec lansing speakers, and a chiclet keyboard.
I'd go Sager for the upgradability, if you are into such things.
But the ASUS is a good deal less - $1500ish if you look hard enough.
I love them both, personally.
I went PC for a gajillion reasons, but the least certainly wasn't the fact that all of my software is for the PC, and I'm disinclined to take the performance hit from Boot Camping.
This isn't to say Macs are bad - just that, for the money, I'd go PC every time, and twice on Yuletide.
And yes, I like my games too.
*cough*two hard drives*/cough*
Yah, if you are into computer gaming then PC all the way. If you just want a work horse computer then Mac shines and PC is alright. It is true, macs are more expensive but from my own experience and several others mac hardware lasts longer so if you are not into upgrading you have a safe bet there. My oldest mac is turning 7 this year and still runs the same as new. The environment os x runs on is unix which is a bonus and also the speed you can work with os x over windows is noticeable too.
Now I may seem bias but I am not. I have a custom built pc (did it myself) with even greater specs than my mac and use it for gaming. I run windows 7 and have used windows since 95 and mac since tiger. I have studied IT for 2 years and this is a personal opinion and one backed by facts; OS X is a much nicer OS to work with over windows. If money is your only concern go for pc. If you rather design, aesthetics and peace of mind go for mac. Each can do everything well except for audio stuff, macs excel over pcs in audio engineering.
I have to admit I didn't read the whole thread, but I wanted to throw my two cents out there. I am a hardcore PC-fanboy who just bought a macbook pro (Didn't know why at the moment. Probably because my uni is more mac-centered) Anyhow, let's cut to it.
Anything you can do on a mac, you can also do on a PC. The opposite is not true, unless you run bootcamp. However, it is my firm belief that what my macbook CAN do, it does better than a PC would've done, even with the same hardware. I have used a few pretty powerful desktop PC's, and you really notice the drop in performance when you run several programs at once. As for my mac, right now I have 13 programs running, among those are Photoshop and Audio editing programs, which as we all know chug a lot of memory. However using them is still not a chore. Everything runs smoothly even with all those programs open.
I have used and worn out four desktop PC's over my lifespan, but see no sign of my macbook (God I hate saying that) slowing down.
The interface in the two platforms are probably the most noticable difference. I have to admit I favour the informative Windows-interface over the more streamlined, but less functional mac interface.
I use it for gaming as well, although running bootcamp of course. Works just fine.
This topic still active? OP bought a PC like three months ago...