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  • PCs vs Macs

    I don't care how unoriginal this thread is, I gotta know. I've been dying for a good computer with good recording software for years. Every time I think about what I could do with the right setup in my own room I get chills all over. I finally have the money to go out and get myself a powerful machine, and I'm getting contradicting information from everyone I talk to. One person says Windows is unstable (I'm on my third windows right now, and it still does weird things, the other crashes every 10 minutes and won't run three programs at the same time) and Macs are the way to go. Next person says Windows can do anything a Mac can and you just need to learn how to maintain it. Yeah, Macs are what most musicians use. But if it'll save me $400 bucks, why shouldn't I go with a Windows? Is the extra $400 worth it? Cause I don't know if I can really trust Windows anymore.

  • #2
    There are many sides of this story, and you'll have extremes from both.

    Both run fine if you know what you are doing - period.

    Windows has more programs, have the largest user base, and can be more difficult for novice users but is the most flexible. Macs have less programs that generally have fewer issues, and easier for the new user but with far less flexibility.

    I'm old school. In the past, Apple was stupid about its marketing and their systems were way out of whack price wise. They were pseudo-elitists, and their users took on the same persona. So I stayed away, and still do.

    It's personal preference, but I'd always recommend a PC over a Mac if you are not a novice.

    Psuper!

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    • #3
      I'm a mac guy turned PC. I had a Lisa, and a Mac 128 later upgraded to a 512, then a Mac plus all the way up through a Quadra 950, when I decided to make the switch.

      You can make great music on both, but sometimes I play the game: "if I had to start from scratch today, what would I do.."

      I'm thinking Mac. Macs in many ways force you to have a simpler system. There's just less that will run on them. Plus all the Mac people I know doing music at least seem to have less downtime. And I admit to having some daw envy everytime I see Logic Pro 7. Makes my Cubase SX system just seem, I dunno, ordinary.

      It's an old argument that will never be settled, still I find it interesting and worthy of discussion.
      Free Pussy Riot!.

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      • #4
        Some interesting news has come to light... that is that Apple is now bringing out software, 'Bootstrap' that allows users to install Windows onto their Mac (with Intel processor).

        Although not a Mac advocate myself it is a rather tempting proposition and one that could solve the dillema for those confused about what to buy: PC or Mac. I think it is a great idea, although I guess the PC vs Mac debate will continue as long as Macs are more expensive than PC's.

        Keep in mind that you will need to buy a copy of Windows to put on your Intel Mac - they will not ship with it and you wont be able to use the windows disc that came with your old PC. Reason being the copy protection/machine registration.

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        • #5
          Someone on the keyboard forum said they should merge and get it over with!
          "Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

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          • #6
            If your computer is going to be strictly music and music related, with no internet access, IMHO, you'll do just fine with a PC and WinXP, either home or pro. You can kick out IE, Outlook Express and other non-essential crap and tweak the OS for music. Once that's all done you'll be quite stable and, as mentioned above, there are lots more options available for recording in the Windows environment than a MAC.

            It really boils down to personal preference. I run a recording box with Win2K that has been rock solid until It started to fail to boot. That may well be a video card or something of that nature. I'm on hiatus anyway. I have Linux on this box and I'm working around with recording programs on it. So far somewhat limited but there are some things available so, that's another option.
            Still Kickin' cancer's ass....Blue Water Sailors of the Vietnam WarHCGB Trooper #246Psalm 19 SocietyI can't really imagine experiencing the desire for multiple women; one has proven to be taxing enough as it is.Thanks Offy

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            • #7
              I would say that 3-5 years ago, Mac would be the way to go since PC were really unstable back then. I had to custom build 4 different highend PCs with various audio interfaces and still have issues with poping and clicking in my audio. Went to Mac G4 and I started creating music right away with very little issues.

              Presently, PCs with Windows XP are very stable and works great. I just sold my Mac G4 Dual 1ghz system, and a G5 and bought a couple of PCs with money left over. For $300 to $800, you can get a very stable PC that can do music pretty well. Heck, I went out to Fry's electronic, bought a store model Compaq Presario AMD 2800 system for $299, add 1GB ram and it worked pretty well with my M-Audio 410 and Motu 1224. No clicks, pops, and it can playback over 24 track of audio without issues. Latency was set to 256samples.

              Now if you want a highend desktop, here's what I'd recommend. This is just my opinion from lots of personal computer experiences. I'd recommend that your CPU and Motherboard be from Intel. If you can't get a Intel Motherboard, get a motherboard that uses Intel Chipsets. This combination isn't the fastest and cost effective solution but you can't go wrong with this setup. You'll find that there are less compatibilities issues, and less craches by going with Intel based systems. Out of the last 8 years working with audio/Video recording on PC, I've found that this setup works best for me as far as reliability is concerned. I have AMD systems too but its more of a gamble.
              ~Johnny

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              • #8
                1&2 ,
                Originally posted by kubyaj16
                I would say that 3-5 years ago, Mac would be the way to go since PC were really unstable back then. I had to custom build 4 different highend PCs with various audio interfaces and still have issues with poping and clicking in my audio. Went to Mac G4 and I started creating music right away with very little issues.



                I don't know, I've really never had a Windows system that I would consider unstable, and that's from running DOS, to Windows 3.0 to 95 to 98 1&2 to ME, Win2K and XP.
                It all depends on the setup and what you have running in the background. If the program installs were done correctly, with virus protection turned off and all other programs closed as requested, there were generally no problems. Then, consistent maintenance, defrags & so on, would allow the machines to run just fine. You would have to power down regularly too. Really, the only real problem I had was a failure to shut down problem with Windows 98 and that was eliminated by installing a fix.

                One thing that lots of people fail to take into consideration is the fact that most, not all but most, of the macs that were used for music were dedicated to that process while the Windows systems were used for everything including surfing the net. All the other stuff running on the computer and in the background were what the problems were, not the OS.
                Take the Windows machine, strip all the crap off and tweak for music production and it will be stable.
                Still Kickin' cancer's ass....Blue Water Sailors of the Vietnam WarHCGB Trooper #246Psalm 19 SocietyI can't really imagine experiencing the desire for multiple women; one has proven to be taxing enough as it is.Thanks Offy

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                • #9
                  Dunno, but it strikes me as odd that the Mac forum here as >26,000 posts and the Windows one >11,000...

                  I don't know anything about music production on the mac yet. I own a Powerbook and an iMac intel, both with internal sound only.

                  My PC pisses me off with its cracking when I want to do some low-latency stuff, no idea if the mac would be better suited?
                  -- Rainer

                  My Guitars (Updated 2011/07/02) • Schecter Society • Yamaholic • Reverend Congregation
                  G&L Militia • Captain in the SG Army in Rock 'N' Roll alliance with the Mazi Bee Militia
                  Beware of my Teutonic Terror

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                  • #10
                    I kinda wanna go with the PC. I've gotten over the different setups, but it's the price. I'm about to spend around 1300 on an iMac G5, and then I'll have to get the soundcard and whatever program I decide to use. I only have 1400 right now. And then it seems like I shouldn't even connect it to the internet after that. I cannot keep using this piece of **************** for the internet. Every Windows I've had has had problems. I mean, maybe it's the Kazaa I used to run, but it was Kazaa lite on the HP downstairs. But even that thing, only a few years old, 512MB of ram, constant defrags, won't let you open up more than 3 internet windows and is constantly doing WEIRD things. This Compaq from 99 or 2000 is worthless. It freezes every hour, rarely lets me watch videos, I'm lucky IE has been running long enough for me to type this.

                    Can I really trust the windows nowadays? Cause that's the same question my parents and I asked before we bought this piece of **************** and the pieceof****************tobe HP. I would love to get two PCs, one for internet, one for music, but even that I'm not sure if I could trust. What's the best choice? 'Cause I'm just afraid I'm going to get suckered into buying a PC I'm gonna be kicking before New Years

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                    • #11
                      Diesel7988,

                      Your whole problems with the PC isn't hardware issue or compatibility issue. Its the adware and spyware thats gets loaded onto your system when you use problems like Kaza, Messenger, and every other wanna be free appz. Nothing is free and every free software weather its Google tool bar, msn messenger, or irc or iMesh, have adware apps that will trigger other pop ups adware. Once your system is infected with these adware, the only way that I know of in getting rid of them is to reload windows. All the adware remove utilities, Norton, MacAffee, and all the likes will not save you. As a matter of fact, installing these so call utilities will slow your system down even more.

                      If I were you Diesel, reformat your computer and reload a fresh install of Windows XP. Only apply the Service pack 1 or 2 update and thats it. Disconnect it from the internet and you'll have a very fast system. If you have to go on the net, only go to reputable sites. Stay away from Pron sites, and all these free software sites. Aside from windows media player, quicktime, and Flash plugins for yoru web browser, don't install any other apps. You'll find that your system will be pretty fast. Even faster than newer systems that are infected with adware and spyware software.

                      The only reason why Mac seems to be more stable is because there aren't that many viruses and adware appz for the Mac Operating system. That is changing so Mac will soon face similar problems with PC users.
                      ~Johnny

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                      • #12
                        Why are you all even discussing this anymore?

                        This is a non issue now that Intel Macs can run XP (and Vista) by using the Boot Camp boot manager. Its a freely downloadable Beta currently and will be a part of the next OS X release.

                        Buy a Intel Mac and be done with it. It can run everything now.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Diesel7988
                          I kinda wanna go with the PC. I've gotten over the different setups, but it's the price. I'm about to spend around 1300 on an iMac G5, and then I'll have to get the soundcard and whatever program I decide to use. I only have 1400 right now. And then it seems like I shouldn't even connect it to the internet after that. I cannot keep using this piece of **************** for the internet. Every Windows I've had has had problems. I mean, maybe it's the Kazaa I used to run, but it was Kazaa lite on the HP downstairs. But even that thing, only a few years old, 512MB of ram, constant defrags, won't let you open up more than 3 internet windows and is constantly doing WEIRD things. This Compaq from 99 or 2000 is worthless. It freezes every hour, rarely lets me watch videos, I'm lucky IE has been running long enough for me to type this.

                          Can I really trust the windows nowadays? Cause that's the same question my parents and I asked before we bought this piece of **************** and the pieceof****************tobe HP. I would love to get two PCs, one for internet, one for music, but even that I'm not sure if I could trust. What's the best choice? 'Cause I'm just afraid I'm going to get suckered into buying a PC I'm gonna be kicking before New Years


                          Here's what you do. Backup all your important files on to as many CDs or DVDs as it takes. Reformat the drive and partition it, if you only have one, into, preferably, four partitions. You will use one for the Windows OS, running a bare as you can get it installed. Use another partition for your music related programs and another for the data, make it FAT32, the OS and Windows program partitions can be NTFS. Then use the fourth partition to run a Linux distribution on. You can easily set up the computer for dual bood to go to XP for your music recording and boot to the Linux OS for your internet needs. That's the best way to keep your Windows system free from the **************** that you will accrue from any and all internet excursions.
                          Use Firefox, Mozilla, Konqueror or Opera for your browsing , Thunderbird for your email and Evolution if you need a Groupware suite. You'll be able to ****************can Microsoft Word, Excel and their other progrmas and run Open Office, Abiword or another word processor. There are other spreadsheets too so you aren't locked into Open Office. I just happen to like it and it will work with Word and Excel files and save them as such. Those programs will be included in the Linux distro, or normally are, and easily obtainable if not.
                          I personally use and recommend Mepis. You can choose your Download Mirror Here. .
                          The support forum is great. I would go with the latest final release, 3.4-3. It will burn to an iso image as a live cd so you can give it a whirl before installing it.
                          Try it, You'll like it.

                          One thing to understand about the HP and Compaq PCs. They are loaded with proprietary crap on top of the Windows hold your hand cycle. I mean who in the hell needs to be notified that there are unused icons on the desktop????
                          When you re-install the Windows OS don't let it defalut. Opt to choose what you want and then only allow it to install what you need and want. Once the OS is installed you can either set up your program and data partitions or, even better, run the Linux distro and install it to which ever partition you want. You might just use either the second or the last partition. You will need to format that as a Linux partition and it's not a bad idea to use all but about 512Mb space for the Lunux partition and let the partition tool set the last 512 as a swap partition. It's not really manditory but helps speed some processes up. Keep track of where you want to put each part of the system. The hard drives, through Linux will be hda1, 2, 3 4 & so on instead of c, d, e, the floppy, fd0, the CD's hdd0, 1 and so on.

                          Shout out if you need some more info or help. PM me and I'll do my best.
                          Still Kickin' cancer's ass....Blue Water Sailors of the Vietnam WarHCGB Trooper #246Psalm 19 SocietyI can't really imagine experiencing the desire for multiple women; one has proven to be taxing enough as it is.Thanks Offy

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by brzilian
                            Why are you all even discussing this anymore?

                            This is a non issue now that Intel Macs can run XP (and Vista) by using the Boot Camp boot manager. Its a freely downloadable Beta currently and will be a part of the next OS X release.

                            Buy a Intel Mac and be done with it. It can run everything now.


                            Uhm, Vista ain't yet available and the release date has been set back until who knows. It is also purported to be a manditory update/lease program. Just what every computer user needs.

                            Best solution if a person already has a viable PC is to load up 98, Win2K or XP as minimally as possible and use that OS to run the recording programs while running Linux, in a dual boot, as the "other use" computer.
                            Still Kickin' cancer's ass....Blue Water Sailors of the Vietnam WarHCGB Trooper #246Psalm 19 SocietyI can't really imagine experiencing the desire for multiple women; one has proven to be taxing enough as it is.Thanks Offy

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by daklander


                              Uhm, Vista ain't yet available and the release date has been set back until who knows. It is also purported to be a manditory update/lease program. Just what every computer user needs.

                              Best solution if a person already has a viable PC is to load up 98, Win2K or XP as minimally as possible and use that OS to run the recording programs while running Linux, in a dual boot, as the "other use" computer.


                              I suppose the general PC will run any present and future OS... As well as maybe a hacked version of OS10.4...&*$%

                              The Mac will run XP currently but I wonder how MS will react to this. They are jumpy at the best of times... I would be interested whether the future MS released OS will run on a MacTel. Not being jumpy myself but MS hardly have a good reputation with playing together. Maybe they think it will be to their benefit.. ?!?


                              Rimmer
                              "(The New Testament) is a work of crude carpentry, hammered together long after its purported events, and full of improvised attempts to make things come out right." Christopher Hitchens, R.I.P

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