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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, let just say I'm new to this board becasue I'm thinking about getting my first Mac.

I'm looking into getting the following system:

Power Mac G4 Dual 867Mhz
256mb PC2100 DDR Ram
80GB Ultra ATA HD
SuperDrive
ATI Radeon 9000 Pro Dual display 64mb DDR

I'm also consifdering adding another 512mb of DDR ram aftermarket for $200, Apple charges too much to have them add it. As for a monitor, I'll have to share this Mac with my P4 PC and it's 17" Samsung monitor. But maybe next year I'll get a secong larger CRT monitor or 17" LCD.

So since this is my first time gettign a Mac, I would appreciate any feedback. I want to use this machine for video editing and graphics work, so I'll be running apps like Premiere, AfterEfects, Photoshop, Illustrator, Director, the usual bunch of multimedia apps. I know that his machine can run this apps fine. I'm more concerned about my hardware selection. I decided to avoid the iMac and eMac becasue I want to be able to upgrade this machine so it can last me atleast 5 years, maybe up to 7. I'm a student so spending close to $4000 is a big investment for me right now, so I want it to last.

Should I hold out for the next batch of G4 or is it a safe time to buy? I don't want to buy this rig and then next month have a new batch of G4 comeout with all these new features.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Here's an update. I contacted my college bookstore and they can get me the following setup for $2779 (before tax) and it would take around 2 weeks to get.

Power Mac G4 Dual 867MHz w/133MHz system bus
60GB Ultra ATA drive
Combo Drive (DVD/CD-RW)
256MB PC2100 DDR SDRAM - 1 DIMM
ATI Radeon 9000 Pro dual-display w/64MB DDR
Apple Pro Keyboard - U.S. English
Apple Pro Speakers
No modem (since I use highspeed Internet)

Seems like a good price, but I may make it an 80gb HD over a 60gb), so that might add an extra $60 to $90 to the price.

I've also got an external LaCie firewire drive, that's why I'm not going for like a 120gb HD, which would be great for capturing video off my camcorder.
 

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The size of the drive and RAM I would keep at a mimimum since you can aquire these from third party resellers than Apple and your store offer them for.

As for the rest, the box is a solid box and there is no doubt in my mind that it won't last you for that amount of time. I deal with people who are using first gen PowerMac G4's and G3's and they are still going stong with everything they need to use to get the job done.

As for the apps, I would suggest Final Cut Pro since it is quickly becoming the mainstream app in hollywood to edit and create DV on for movies and everything else.

Welcome to the Mac community
Everyone here will help you with whatever problems you are having with you new setup and support you as much as we can.

Good choice in the deciding on the Mac! They are the best system available.
 

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If you can wait another month or two, I would. The PowerMacs are likely to be upgraded in the next month or two, and you'll probably get what you want cheaper or you'll get a faster machine for the same price. If you need it now, go with the DP867. The DP867 will work great, though for what you're using it for.

RAM is definitely cheaper from a third-party.
 

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My G4 is a couple of years old and it still rocks for Photoshop 7 and every other application I use. (I'm a graphic designer.)

The setup you're looking at sounds good. Release dates for new Macs are a pretty closely guarded secret by Apple, but speculation is new desktops are coming soon. If you're not planning on running OS 9, then it probably doesn't matter to you, but the graphics industry is still prodominently using OS 9, not OS X since QuarkXPress has yet to ship a native version of it for X.

If you wait until the new machines are released, you might be able to pick one up on clearout, but you'll have to act fast since there won't be many available in stock, and they'll be bought up by others trying to get the last of the dual booting Macs at a discounted prices.

If you check out the Apple web site, in the education sales, they have a single processor tower available at a good price too.

Lastly, there are some good people that deal in Macs on this forum, Macdoc is one, you could ask them for competitive quotes too. Email me if you want the number for the Mac seller I've dealt with. Good advice, great prices, and free delivery in most of southern Ontario.
 

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Typically, we have some broad hints that Apple is going to introduce new hardware from vendors, who notice the supply of machines kind of drying up. That hasn't happened for this MacWorld Expo, so the consensus is that new hardware is still a little away yet.

Apple lately has been in the habit of updating hardware 2 and sometimes 3 times a year, so waiting is hardly bad advice. Still, if you need it now you may as well buy current stuff; it's no different than it is with Windows PCs.

Minimizing the RAM and HD is fairly common practice amonst the more experienced Mac buyers, as you can do better with trusted aftermarket vendors. This is partly due to Apple signing long term contracts for this stuff, to insulate them from market fluctuations. However, (like Dell, Gateway, and anybody else) hardware vendors also use these addons and upgrades to bring a little more profit into the sale. For solid proof check what some charge for shipping (Dell's $110 for a laptop, ground, 5-10 days is a perfect example. Last time I sent a 20Kg desktop across the country I spent $75 for 3-day guaranteed, fully insured).

Be careful with RAM for Macs, they need quality sticks. Ask around this forum for recommendations when you're ready.

If you want, you can buy a 3rd party switch and use the same keyboard, mouse and monitor with both systems (assuming a USB port on the PC). Your multibutton mouse will be instantly recongised on the Mac and yes, all the buttons will work. The Mac KB will work fine on the PC if you want to try that, or use a USB PC keyboard. It's up to you.

Rest assured that the DP 867 will work fine and is better than the hardware 95% of the people who do the same things will have.

You may want to consider buying some software with the Mac; OfficeX is available for a fair discount if you buy them on the same invoice. Check Apple's webiste (www.apple.ca) for the latest deals.
 

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I would pass on the dp 867 and get the DP 1gig.

faster bus, better graphics card.

There is ALWAYS going to be a better computer in 3 months. No matter when you buy, you will kick yourself in 3 months :+)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the feedback. I think I will go with the system I listed, still not sure about the Pro Speakers since I maily use headphones when I'm on my PC.

As for getting apps, for now all I think I'll nedd to buy are and antivirus (probably norton 2003) and fire wall software, not sure what good for a Mac since I use Zone Alarm on the PC for this.

Does anyone know if the Mac will come with Toast or will I have to purchase that myself? The Mac will have to come with some sort of burning software right? My main focus is being able to burn PC/Mac hybrids.

As for OSX, I can get that for $99. UofT isselling it for that much but you have to be a UofT student, which my girlfriend is so I guess I'm in luck! But If I don't get it it's okay since I have Office XP on my PC.
 

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I know this is going to sound like treason here, but why are you getting a Mac? Why do you want to get one personally?

If video work is what you are really going for a mac is not the best choice Yes you heard me, they are not the first choice. In fact as a high-end or production video solution they rank rather low.

And if you are doing both video and graphic design, better get two of them. You don't do both from one machine. And forget LCD, not for video work. Looks pretty, but it's not accurate.

You really should check into your purchase a little more. We use Macs and PCs. Use the best machine for the job.

Personally I love the Macs, but they don't do everything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I use both PCs and Macs at school, running the same apps on both types of machines and from my experience things seem to work smoother on a Mac. Also, I really sick of buying an Intel based PC only to have it be too slow or whatever to run the latest apps a year and a half later. I'm looking into the mac as an investment.

Plus, if I want to freelance, I'll need a Mac to do things like create a hybrid, or a Mac Projector for director.

I never thought I'd get questioned on this forum!
 

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Well there are surprises everywhere


Just out of curiousity what are the PC systems at your school?

My experience has been that most schools kind of lag at keeping current with hardware.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well I got ot Humber College and am in the multimedia program so all if not most of our PC are P4, around the 2ghz range. Mainly they're HP Workstations so they're not to bad. Better then what I got at home which is a P4 1.3ghz PC.
 

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Sever wrote:
I spent way to much money on school learning programming languages that were basically useless... I mean we were not supposed to even write API calls for &*$#!! sakes because it was considered advanced and not applicable to the course.

Out of curiosity, where'd you go to school?
 

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Well see that's the problem right there. No one doing video editing for a living would use an HP or Dell consumer box. Try editing and rendering video on a loaded dual Xeon system, with Avid and watch how fast it goes, and how stable it is.


Like most schools that teach any media subjects, except Sheridan in Oakville, they are not using the right equipment for the course. They use HPs and such because that's what the boards approve. It must be a nightmare trying to render effects and transitions on those PCs. What software are they using on them[cringe]?
 

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Sever wrote:
My experience has been that most schools kind of lag at keeping current with hardware.

Congratuations! You've just won the "Most Obvious Statement of the Year" award! :D

When I was in university, most of the CS students did their work on about ten different Unix machines (via black and white Xterms, of course). You could tell when an assignment was due because the load would be up to 14 for the entire day before.

The fun course, though, was graphics, where only two of our SGI Octanes had texture mapping built into hardware. Ugh. This was in 1999, too....
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Actually they're not the same HPs you'd buy at futureshop. These are what we got: http://www.hp.ca/products/static/x2100/summary.html?OID=-9641

As for the apps, we use Adobe Premiere, After Effects, Vegas Video, Acid, Sound Forge, Cleaner 5, Photoshop, Illustrator, Director, Flash, Fireworks, Dreamweaver, iShell, 3DS Max 5 or 4, can't remeber. There's probably a couple of otehr apps we'velearned but I can't remember. I'm not in a film and tv program so the focus is not just in video, it's more the intergration of everything.
 

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Well those are okay, but these are nicer... Xeon

Of course none of the video cards are very good for video work.

They'd make nice machines for Doom III when it comes out... :D
 

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Well yes I guess that goes without saying eh. Obvious indeed.

I spent way to much money on school learning programming languages that were basically useless... I mean we were not supposed to even write API calls for &*$#!! sakes because it was considered advanced and not applicable to the course :mad:

Sorry about that, I have kind of a problem with the education system and it's total lack of regard for advancements in technology, and not keeping current with.....Grrrrrrrrr!

But I'm not bitter ;)
 
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