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View Full Version : Complaint about Apple Computers!!!


Melensdad
10-21-2006, 05:03 PM
I'm generally an advocate of Apple, but I'm not blind.

Now I have a real complaint. I've got a couple older Apple laptops, an iBook and a PowerBook G4. And I have a new handy dandy super fancy MacBook Pro. It is the MacBook Pro that I am complaining about. With my old PowerBook if I want to connect the computer to a VCR, DVD recorder or TV set it only required an Apple supplied adapter and some pretty standard cables. This allowed me to project anything from my computer up onto my TV set.

With the MacBook Pro the only video out is a DVI output. DVI = Digital Video Interface. It is a very high quality, pure digital connection. Great for providing the highest possible quality output. In theory that is wonderful. But in the real world, it is a huge pain in the arse. With the new computer, the fancy cable supplied is a DVI to VGA cable. Ever see a VCR or TV with a VGA input?

With the older MacBook G4, there was a Mini-DVI port, and a supplied cable that converted the Mini-DVI to both an S-Video jack and a standard RCA jack.

I spent over $2000 for this super fancy ultra connective laptop, then spent a few hours driving to stores like Radio Shack, Circuit City, etc looking for a way to connect it to my TV. No luck.

Looks like I'll be ordering another adapter from Apple.

$19.
Not a killer, but for crying out loud, why not provide it like they did with my last super duper fancy computer. :horsepoop:

DaveNay
10-21-2006, 06:22 PM
Hey Bob......

Ya want a little cheese with that whine? :yum:

Doc
10-23-2006, 10:17 AM
Bob,
Fred Langa puts out a very informative PC info newsletter, and I just happened on an old one that talks about the Apple on Intel (which was new at that time 12/05).

Fred is not impressed with Apple ....but I'll let you read why:

1st: Here is a link to the entire newsletter:
http://langa.com/newsletters/2005/2005-12-19.htm#5


1) Apple's MacOS On Intel PCs
Hi Fred, While not typical of the technical questions you usually address, your perspective would be much appreciated. We have a mixed marriage--my wife's PC and I'm Mac. I've appreciated your newsletter nonetheless as there is a tremendous amount of platform-independent, useful information (not to mention some specific trouble shooting resources when my wife has thrown up her hands...) Both of us do some work from home and because my work is graphic, Mac is my preferred mode. My wife has specific need for PC-centric applications like SPSS, so the Mac is not an option for her, but with the announcement Macs moving to Intel architecture, we're wondering if you have any advance hunches as to whether those machines will be practical to run a Windows(Vista?)/Mac hybrid OS? She's thinking about buying a new computer with more horsepower, but having gotten over Mac-phobia using my Powerbook, we're both thinking the Intel Macs might be worth waiting for. Thoughts? Thanks, Al McAtee

I think you may be disappointed, Al.

It's pretty early in the game and lots could change, but the Intel-based versions of the MacOS that are scheduled to start appearing next year probably will only run on special, Apple-branded PCs that contain a proprietary security chip. The MacOS will look for the security chip, and refuse to run if it's installed in a PC without the chip--- which is to say: It will refuse to run on any other brand PC, even if all the other hardware is identical.

It would only be a small--- tiny--- additional step for Apple to make it so the PC will *only* run the Apple OS: Once you add a BIOS-level security chip, you can set it to monitor almost anything; and to only allow the PC to run if conditions are exactly what the vendor specifies. There's no technical reason why Apple couldn't cripple its PC so that they will work with only Apple-approved software.

It sounds a little paranoid, but it's in perfect synch with the company's long history of artificially restricting its hardware. Consider: Why are there no Mac clones? There's no technical reason at all. It's that Apple won't allow it to happen, using legal measures to remain the sole provider of Mac hardware; thus allowing them to charge premium prices. Apple likes a captive audience.

For sure, there will be hacks and cracks that will get around the security chips. But those hacks and cracks will be illegal: You'll be able to do it, but you'll most likely be breaking the license agreement.

So: if you need a PC in the near future, I would not recommend waiting for the Apple PCs to come out. I could be wrong, but I'll be amazed if they turn out to be a good general-purpose computing solution. Rather, I suspect that, in keeping with a long history of similar moves, the Apple PCs will be premium priced devices that are meant to run only the MacOS, either mainly, or perhaps solely.

(If you get the feeling I dislike Apple's marketing, you're right. The wonderful thing about personal computing is that it places enormous power in the hands of us all. Companies that pursue elitist policies--- and Apple is far and away the worst in that regard--- work against the democratization of high-technology; and also appeal to some of the basest of human instincts: "I'm better/cooler than you because I 'think different'," or some such. Apple's technology is fine, but their approach to marketing just rubs me the wrong way. It always has.)

Bottom line: Apple's move to Intel is NOT for the end-user's benefit. It's solely for Apple's benefit. If your interests align with Apple's, then you'll do great with their hardware and software. But if things like "bang for the buck" or wide applicability and broad compatibility are important to you, Apple has *never* been a good choice. And I'll be very, very surprised if that changes any time soon.

Melensdad
10-23-2006, 10:26 AM
Doc, sounds like that author is just another windows junkie who can't get his brown nose out of Bill Gate's rear end.

I own and use both Mac and Windows. The wife owns Mac, teaches high school computers on Windows. No matter what guys like that author say about Mac, the fact is they don't crash like Windows machines (unless you get a rare defective Mac). They also are easier to set up with printers, routers, networks, etc. They simply work.

For guys like you, who want to program, or dig around the guts of their computer and modify it, then Windows might be better. For a typical end user who never cracks open a case to install anything, then I see no reason to go with the unreliability and instability of a Windows system.

Do I have an occasional bitch about my Macs, sure. I'm not blind.

Doc
10-23-2006, 10:47 AM
Actually Bob, for guys like me that like to 'tinker' with the hardware, and build your own PC, Linux offers the most bang for the buck from my perspective. Most of them are free and will do about everything your winders box will do.

I agree with the authors primary complaint about Apple. Premium priced devices that will only work with Apple. They get you and they lock you in. It's the marketing that turns most of us off. The OS is fine. It is based on UNIX. :thumb:

Even with winders needing a reboot once in awhile it still gets the job done 95% of the time. Overall it works fine. My desktops can be up for up to a month between reboots. But eventually a reboot does make things work a little quicker.

Do you ever reboot your Apple?

Melensdad
10-23-2006, 11:02 AM
I agree with the authors primary complaint about Apple. Premium priced devices that will only work with Apple. I love that tired old arguement. It completely falls apart when you consider the total cost of ownership and all the bullshit upgrades and the maintainence costs on a Windows PC. I've got 3 guys who run around here constantly fixing, tweaking, and otherwise costing me money to keep PCs up and running. The Mac systems may cost a bit more initially, but cost less long term.

As for the "premium priced devices" that is also total hogwash. I can use any brand of printer, camera, router, cable, scanner, USB or Firewire drive, etc. And that has been true for the past 5 or 10 years! Hell in my office my laptop is simultaneaously connected (via USB) to an Audiovox LCD TV, a Panasonic DVD surround sound system, a Delphi XM SkyFi2, Palm Treo 650, a SanDisk multi-card reader, a Canon S500 camera, and an iPod DLO Home Dock Deluxe, not to mention a traditional Epson Printer. Oh, and our whole network too.

Do you ever reboot your Apple?Almost never. As I run mostly laptops I simply close the lid and put them to sleep until I need them again. Why bother to reboot when there are no issues?

The biggest problem I encounter are problems with Firefox, and those are not Apple problems, those are Firefox problems.

Now my wife has a nearly 5 year old iBook that is pretty worn out and abused, she does run into the occasional hardware problem so her laptop has to be rebooted about once every couple months. Sometimes twice.

Doc
10-23-2006, 11:11 AM
Guess we'll have to agree to disagree on the total cost of ownership. I know I do not spend over 1 grand on any PC server or workstation I have. Most are under $500 and work fine.

Can you buy a internal hard drive or memory chips from anyone but Apple? I thought the author was talking about internal componets, not peripheral devices.

Melensdad
10-23-2006, 11:32 AM
Guess we'll have to agree to disagree on the total cost of ownership. I know I do not spend over 1 grand on any PC server or workstation I have. Most are under $500 and work fine.

Can you buy a internal hard drive or memory chips from anyone but Apple? I thought the author was talking about internal componets, not peripheral devices. Doc, you are NOT a typical PC owner. You occupy that small % of PC owners who administer their own networks, can tear down and rebuilt a computer from scratch, etc.

As for the internal drives, memory chips, etc. Yes, you can buy them from outside suppliers. And again, you & the author are bringing up a red-herring issue because the vast majority of computer users never crack open their case to install those things. Most buy a computer and use it until it breaks, and then buy a new one a few years later. Of those who do want to add memory, I'm pretty much willing to bet that 75% of them take their computer to Radio Shack, Circuit City or Best Buy or some other place and have the memory chips installed for them!

For the record, I have installed memory in ONE of my Apple desktops, it was the first one I owned. I've had 2 other Apple desktops and 4 Apple laptops since then. Never opened the cases on any of those other Apples. I've also personally owned 2 or 3 Dell Desktops and 1 Toshiba laptop during that same time. Never opened one of those up either. I just buy them with whatever amount of memory I need and don't have to worry about it (and no, I have never just ordered ALL the memory available, nor do I order the largest hard drive available).

Like I said, if we talk about TYPICAL users of computers, I fit that profile far better than you do. While you can make anything work, I can't. I don't want to even try. I just want my computer to work, I want it to work without screwing around with it, and I want it to work every time I need it. Based on that, I've found Apple to be far easier to use, far more reliable, and in the long run less expensive to keep up to date because Mr Gates does not keep extracting a pound of my flesh every few months with costly upgrades.