Dell PC shot --> New Desktop needed

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Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
:worms:

Okay, so my wife's PC is shot (please no comments or questions about what is wrong with it).

I'm looking to buy a new desktop for her. I'm considering Apple because she does a lot of work on pictures (editing, etc.) and would lend itself towards that.

However, I'm hesitant because I use a PC.

Changing from a PC to Mac, what are things and expenses I'm looking at? I'm thinking software, and how things will work together.

Some of the programs she uses are: Quicken, Lighthouse, Microsoft Word, Excel

Any help?
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
All of the above tasks should be equally easy on either OS - given similar hardware. If you are considering the apple in order to get iPhoto, bear in mind that software is part of iLife which has to be purchased and installed.
 

chuckd

Puritan Board Sophomore
You will need to repurchase any software. They are not compatible. The Mac Mini would likely be your best option. It has the hardware of an iMac or Mac Pro, but cheaper since you are bringing all of your old desktop accessories (monitor, mouse, keyboard, speakers).
 

Rich Koster

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
Get a Mac Mini. You can use your old keyboard, monitor, disc burner, printer etc. You can also download Open Office for free to replace Word & Excel. I made the switch back in 2007 and will not go back. It currently comes with a 500G drive for $599. That should be plenty for editing pictures.
 

jfschultz

Puritan Board Junior
You will need to repurchase any software. They are not compatible. The Mac Mini would likely be your best option. It has the hardware of an iMac or Mac Pro, but cheaper since you are bringing all of your old desktop accessories (monitor, mouse, keyboard, speakers).

No totally true. The mouse and keyboard need to use a USB port, so if your current mouse and keyboard are wired with colored round connectors, they will need to be replaced. Wireless keyboards and mice should work that use BlueTooth or a USB dongle. For the display you will need a $29 adapter from the "Mini display port" to VGA connection or use the HDMI connection.

Pages and Numbers are Apple's version of Word and Excel. They can read and write Word and Excel files and cost much less. However, Numbers does not have all the features of Excel, but probably covers all the needs of 90% of the users.

The Mac can run Windows either as a dual boot system with BootCamp (Free and included with the Mac) or by one of several virtual machine packages. You would need to purchase a retail copy of windows if you want to do this.
 

Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
All of the above tasks should be equally easy on either OS - given similar hardware. If you are considering the apple in order to get iPhoto, bear in mind that software is part of iLife which has to be purchased and installed.

For Photo, we'll use Lightroom
 

Rich Koster

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
You will need to repurchase any software. They are not compatible. The Mac Mini would likely be your best option. It has the hardware of an iMac or Mac Pro, but cheaper since you are bringing all of your old desktop accessories (monitor, mouse, keyboard, speakers).

No totally true. The mouse and keyboard need to use a USB port, so if your current mouse and keyboard are wired with colored round connectors, they will need to be replaced. Wireless keyboards and mice should work that use BlueTooth or a USB dongle. For the display you will need a $29 adapter from the "Mini display port" to VGA connection or use the HDMI connection.

Pages and Numbers are Apple's version of Word and Excel. They can read and write Word and Excel files and cost much less. However, Numbers does not have all the features of Excel, but probably covers all the needs of 90% of the users.

The Mac can run Windows either as a dual boot system with BootCamp (Free and included with the Mac) or by one of several virtual machine packages. You would need to purchase a retail copy of windows if you want to do this.

I used an adapter for USB to the old blue and green round plugs. I think it was $6 @ Wal-Mart. I forgot that, thanks John :)
 

chuckd

Puritan Board Sophomore
You will need to repurchase any software. They are not compatible. The Mac Mini would likely be your best option. It has the hardware of an iMac or Mac Pro, but cheaper since you are bringing all of your old desktop accessories (monitor, mouse, keyboard, speakers).

No totally true. The mouse and keyboard need to use a USB port, so if your current mouse and keyboard are wired with colored round connectors, they will need to be replaced. Wireless keyboards and mice should work that use BlueTooth or a USB dongle. For the display you will need a $29 adapter from the "Mini display port" to VGA connection or use the HDMI connection.

Pages and Numbers are Apple's version of Word and Excel. They can read and write Word and Excel files and cost much less. However, Numbers does not have all the features of Excel, but probably covers all the needs of 90% of the users.

The Mac can run Windows either as a dual boot system with BootCamp (Free and included with the Mac) or by one of several virtual machine packages. You would need to purchase a retail copy of windows if you want to do this.

good info. though the Mac Mini comes with the monitor adapter. edit: nevermind, that's HDMI to DVI.
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
If you are using lightroom, I would recommend a PC then. No need to repurchase software, and for the price of a mac mini you could get a more powerful PC. I have a mac mini and a PC, but the mini can't handle lightroom tasks without lots of waiting. The mini is great for web-surfing, but it only has a laptop processor, so it's limited in that regard.
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
Also you would have to purchase the mac version of lightroom which is roughly $150 if you aren't a creative cloud subscriber.
 

JohnGill

Puritan Board Senior
Whichever Apple you get (mac mini is a great idea) you can partition the HDD with Windows and install your software their. Open Office, LibreOffice (Apple native of OO) iWork, are all good suggestions. You can also use VMWare to run Windows at the same time as OSX. You can then transfer files back and forth if you wish. But there's really nothing you can't do on the Apple that you do on the PC.

Replace lightroom with GiMP on PC and Apple. It's free. (Comparison site, and GiMP does have online resources: GIMP vs Photoshop Lightroom in Photo and Graphics Editing Software) GiMP does have a learning curve, but it is worth it. If you do 3D imaging you can get Blender for free as well.
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
Gimp is an alternative for photoshop, not lightroom. What you would want a program called rawtherapee to replace the functions of lightroom. Both are open source, and you can download and try them now to see if they will suit your needs.

Just to give a comparison of abilities: the $599 mac mini features an i5-3210M laptop processor with a benchmark score of 3837 - 4gb of laptop ram - 500Gb laptop hard drive (5400 RPM) . Looking online at best buy, I see an HP pc with the same hard drive and ram size priced at $596 - the Only differences are that the Hard drive is faster (7200 RPM) and the Processor is much more powerful (i5 3470 with benchmark score of 6623) - that's nearly double

If you were purchasing a car, I would not recommend that you purchase a new honda civic, with the intention of swapping out the motor and transmission for Accord parts. I would just tell you to get the Accord in the first place.
 

jogri17

Puritan Board Junior
Let`s just look at the numbers and the reality of the market. There is not a huge demand for tour computers. In fact most stores will not have more than 2 or 3 models. So by getting a desktop PC, you`re investing in an all and 1 model. Given you WILL NOT be able to the buy one (unless you look very hard online) with Windows 7, you will get windows 8 and you will want a touch screen (trust me, its a terrible experience without one) so the price is around 700-1000) for a good all in one pc.

A mac mini can be be bought for 500 bucks, you'll spend another maybe 50 for adapters, (I presume you have a VGA or HDMI capable monitor and mouse and keyboard), you will have to rebuy office. That is the only pain the but (but like others have said, openoffice or libre office are sufficient), though it may be worth buying for 100 bucks or so the new office 2013. I like it a lot. and i know if you call adobe and explain you have a valid liscence, they may be willing to cut the price off if you move to the cloud edition when you tell the you are switching, but if you don`t want cloud... you can buy it retail from 79-150 dollars, so when all is said and done moving to the macmini will be more or less at the low point of moving to a newer windows 8 desktop given windows 8ificatoin of the market. Also, included with the mac mini (and built into the price) is the really nice apple care (which includes phone support and covers accidents) and the option of extending it up to another 3 years (covers everything including accidents and phone support) and that price would put you at the same as as a higher quality windows 8 all in one desktop with out the guarantee protection.

The move from windows 7 to Mac OSX isn`t that hard and in my opinion a bit easier than windows 7 to using windows 8 lol

*one more note: I wasn`t clear on the office part. the Macversion is a bit behind the windows one, but has all the functionality and combatibility, so if you are ok with 2010, the mac version but if you like the 2013 version (which i do), it may be worth keeping with windows. But the mac version will feel like more traditional office than 2013 actually.
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
So to answer your original question the expenses will be:
$139.99 mac for office
$114.62 lightroom for mac (amazon)
49.99 quicken essentials for mac
$50 for adapters
=$354.60 cost of conversion
+599.99 mac mini
=954.59 total cost mac

or 479.99 for a similarly spec'd PC with Windows 7 that will run the software you currently have
Newegg.com - DELL Vostro 270 (469-3948) No Screen Desktop PC Intel Core i3 3220(3.30GHz) 4GB DDR3 500GB HDD Capacity Intel HD Graphics 2500 Windows 7 Professional 64-Bit
 
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Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
so the price is around 700-1000) for a good all in one pc.

If you are spending $1000 for a desktop, you must be going for a top of the line gaming system.

CyberpowerPC Black Gamer Ultra GUA250 Desktop PC with AMD Quad-Core FX-4100 Processor, 8GB Memory, 1TB Hard Drive and Windows 7 Home Premium with Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Option - Online at Walmart for $498.
But if I was shopping, I'd check out Fry's, Microcenter, and Best Buy for in-store specials, drop by WalMart and compare with what Dell was offering on-line.
 

jogri17

Puritan Board Junior
If you are spending $1000 for a desktop, you must be going for a top of the line gaming system.

CyberpowerPC Black Gamer Ultra GUA250 Desktop PC with AMD Quad-Core FX-4100 Processor, 8GB Memory, 1TB Hard Drive and Windows 7 Home Premium with Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Option - Online at Walmart for $498.
yeah, I wouldn't buy a computer with an AMD processor. That is probably my difference I wouldn't buy a computer with a i3, i5 or i7 is a must have. You may not consider yourself a power user, but you'll realize very quickly with and AMD processor v. an i5 or i7 the difference. 4 gigs of memory is sufficient, but AMD while great on mobile devices, I can't recomend for a PC.
 

jogri17

Puritan Board Junior
CyberpowerPC Black Gamer Ultra GUA250 Desktop PC with AMD Quad-Core FX-4100 Processor, 8GB Memory, 1TB Hard Drive and Windows 7 Home Premium with Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Option - Online at Walmart for $498.

I am not a gammer, but I know many folk who are in the gaming community and this be an lower end of the budget computers for gaming. Here is an article.

AMD has troubel running a web browser, logos bible software (ok not the most memory efficient program out there) and a youtube video at the same time (I tried it out on my budget PC and the fan sounds like its going to explode!, but its quite quiet on my Lenovo thinkpad). I also own a macmini (attached to my television). The quality just isn't there to compare.

En plus, Skype is also a very bizzare program. To get a good skype video call processing power is just as important as internet speed upload (not to mention downlaod- ideally at least 1mb each way).

You don't have to get a macmini. But if you continue with windows, I implore you to consider a touch screen because Microsoft is sold out on the metro interface. It isn't going away. Given it is the present, I do not think buying a computer with an older version of windows on it is wise. You will be limited. It is always wise to upgrade when you can. A computer with my suggestions are in this price range (example)

This is why I suggest the Macmini. OSX isn't designed for touch yet and it looks like Apple isn't in a hurry to implement it given their recent release of the new imacs. And it would be less to get the macmini and rebuy your software than a quality PC with the same specs (processor power and ram specifically). Also in the future the Macmini is very easy to get repaired and upgraded if you so desire.
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
My computer is a different brand, but I'm running that processor with 6 gigs rather than 8 with no problems. But I also am not a heavy resource user, so I don't know that it would be adequate for video editing.

If I was rich, I'd probably be in the 'buy an Apple crowd'. But since I'm not, I look for adequacy and affordability. I can't afford a 20 per cent surcharge for a cool logo for the same amount of power.
 

Berean

Puritanboard Commissioner
I wouldn't buy a computer with an AMD processor
I wouldn't buy a computer with a i3, i5 or i7

I know what you're trying to say, but your post is saying something different. BTW, I've had an Acer Aspire desktop for two years and the speed and responsiveness are fantastic with an AMD Athlon II X2 255 Processor @ 3.10 GHz with 4 GB RAM running Win7 64-bit Home Premium.
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
I'm a huge fan of linux, and I don't mean to pick nits, but none of that software will run on ubuntu. Even if the OP were up for configuring wine, lightroom will not behave properly, nor should it, under wine emulation.
 

littlepeople

Puritan Board Freshman
I would be very disappointed if I tried to accomplish in GIMP what I do in Lightroom. GIMP doesn't even support RAW files without installing and configuring a separate plugin. Even then, the features of lightroom are not the features of GIMP. Photoshop, yes. Lightroom, no.
 

jogri17

Puritan Board Junior
I know what you're trying to say, but your post is saying something different. BTW, I've had an Acer Aspire desktop for two years and the speed and responsiveness are fantastic with an AMD Athlon II X2 255 Processor @ 3.10 GHz with 4 GB RAM running Win7 64-bit Home Premium.
sorry I type too fast sometimes that what i hear in my head is different than when I type for some reason. Sometimes I type random words because my fingers are used to certain patterns... it's quite odd. a computer with i5 or i7 is ideal. an i3 wan't really a hardware change, it was more software upgrades than anything else.

I would just say try to do normal (but memory heavy stuff) on an AMD processor and compare it to a i5. the difference is notable.
 
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