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Thread: which mac to buy?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    i have to look for a new mac for use at my company. currently we all use nt-based pc's, but the designers all use mac's. so it would be alot easier for me to make small changes if i had a mac. i'll also probably use it to work on quark, photoshop and flash projects.

    would you guys recommend working on any of those programs on a basic 500mhz imac or should i just get them to shell out for the G4 733mhz? and how much of a difference does the G4 vs. G3 (so i can justify the cost difference).

    i'm obviously not a mac user.

    thanks for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2001
    just want to make small changes?

    You probably should get a 600-700 mHz iMac.

    Buy a thousand shares in Apple, too.

  3. #3
    Wow. Well, I'm a Sr. Art Director at an advertising agency in Houston although recently, my wife and I moved and telecommute from my home in Nashville. At the office, we've got the big guns, but here at the home I have an imac DV special edition which only runs at 400 Mhz but I've got 389 megs of RAM and an external 80 gig hard drive.

    I just completed some trade show graphics for a client and each file was around 130 megs a piece.

    I do a lot of work in Photoshop, Illustrator, all the internet programs and Quark.

    The biggest issue isn't getting a mac, it's knowing the program. If you already know Quark, then you're good to go. Macs are easy, but some programs take a bit to know. And from the industry (design) point of view, even making small changes can screw up other things that may cause more time/money yada yada then just having the designers pipe down the griping and make the small changes.

    What about getting Quark for a PC? As long as the Quark file is saved with an .qxd extension both Macs and Window machines can open them. The real bugger is uncommon fonts. If it's all internal stuff and usually in Helvetica, Arial, Times or the such then just get the program.

    If you'll be treading in deeper, then opt for an iMac.


  4. #4
    The big issue isn't the processor speed or kind (g4 vs. g3) so much as the amount of RAM in the computer.

    Those programs require a lot of ram, and I find it useful to have at least 256 mb of RAM (I use 512 ram G4 laptop). This allows you to open several programs and a browser.

    My work on G3 laptops (with boosted RAM) was fine.

    The only problem is that iMacs (the G3 desktop models) don't allow you to add much memory. The g4 desktop can go as high as 1.5 gigabytes.

    If you have the "big guns" in the office, how bout getting a macintosh emulator program? I don't know if there are any good ones out ther, but it's an option.

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    thanks everyone for all their insight.

  6. #6
    Senior Member dlowe93's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Originally posted by gratis
    The only problem is that iMacs (the G3 desktop models) don't allow you to add much memory. The g4 desktop can go as high as 1.5 gigabytes.
    my other issue with iMacs (especially older ones) is the monitor resolution. if you are working with image files and page layouts, you will be ready to kill somebody after a week of working 800 x 600.

    i have a 500mhz G3 powerbook that i'd had for over a year, and my only complaint is that 1024 x 768 is not quite enought, but it's generally fine. of course, i used to do my flash and after effects work on a G4 with two 20" monitors. that was nice, but my home office space, nor my home office budget will allow that.

    personally, i prefer the powerbook because i love being able to take my work wherever i want to , but that's just me.

    as far as the difference between the G4 and the G3, if the price difference is significant enough, the G3 should be fine, but if you are doing any sort of regular heavy lifting in photoshop, get the G4. you will be glad you did.

    hope this helps.


  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2001


    I would recomend buying a laptop. Either a G3 powerbook or a G4 powerbook. It makes it much easier to take with you, and with an extra moniter you can use two screens to help organize your desktop. I have a G3 and love it. I wouldn't mind getting the new titanum one though



  8. #8
    Alien Bob
    My spaceship's currently in for it's service...

    Join Date
    May 2000
    Orbiting the Earth just above Peterborough
    I've been using an iMac for a while now, although I'm hoping to get a G4 pretty soon. The only downside with iMacs is the resolution. If you're doing design orientated work, then it can be a little tricky at times. Apart from that I think they are a great little machine.

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2000

    thanks again everyone

    i found out that the old designer was charging $250 per page to do minor changes (sku's, prices).

    so i have them pretty much convinced to pick me up a power mac 867mhz w/ 2 sticks of the 512mb ram and also the 17" flat panel. i wanted the 20" one but i think that's pushing it.

    so i can't wait to get it.

  10. #10

    What ever you do.. don't get an imac. I have a friend that works in a Mac Warehouse here in Orlando and he said that the logic boards on the iMacs are constantly failing. The best system with minimal hardware issues are the 450Mhz towers and up. G4 Cubes are also pretty good, however, upgrading them can be a problem.

    Which ever mac you get... load it up with lots of RAM for best performance.

    I have a 450Mhz G4 Cube with 448 MB Ram. I have no problems crashing nor system lockup. It runs very smooth. I also play Quake 3 and Unreal tournament online without any hazels.

    Good Luck!

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