Well folks, I’ve officially moved to the smug side of the computer world. I now run a Mac as my main machine. I’m going to be explaining why I made the switch from my old setup to the new OSX setup, but first I’d like to give a bit of a backstory.
I’ve always enjoyed building & tinkering with my computers. The past four desktops that I’ve owned have been custom-built machines pieced together by yours truly. It was always a fun experience, and let me build exactly what I wanted. For years now, I’ve been the guy who always listened to “ohhh, you’re a web designer and use Windows?” prose by anyone asking or seeing my desktop. Until 4 or 5 years ago, I vehemently disliked Apple. Mainly because I disagreed with them always controlling the hardware & software in one to build their machines. I understood the benefits then, but they never outweighed the negatives for me, until recently.
Fast forward to eighteen months ago; I bought my first Mac, a 13” MacBook Air “fully-loaded”. I fell in love with the build quality, solid-state drive, and other features. I didn’t however, fall in love with the Operating System, but it never annoyed me enough to dislike it. I bitched and moaned about some of the stupidity of it just as I do windows and I’d put it on an even keel with Windows 7 in that respect. The place Apple won me over, was especially with laptops, the build quality of the hardware. You could tell months of design considerations and details were put into the MacBook Air, as well as most of their other products. So because I trusted the hardware and quality, I bought the Air.
With the Air, I got my first taste of many Mac-only pieces of software that would make my life quite a bit easier while working, like this one, and this one, oh and here too. I would always try to find windows-based alternatives and sometimes would succeed, but often wouldn’t find anything similar. I’d like to also add, as a designer I enjoy clean and enjoyable user interfaces. I think we all know that isn’t a high-priority feature of most Windows software.
At this point, I started to ponder the thought of buying the behemoth that is the Mac Pro, only to laugh at the prices of them online when spec’ed to something I’d want to run for my main machine in my home office. The iMac wasn’t something I was interested in, mainly because I already have 3 Dell UltraSharp IPS Displays, which are all better than the 27” Apple Monitor that comes attached to the iMac itself. I was torn, I had settled that it made sense to move to Apple, but there wasn’t a specific product that seemed to match all of my needs.
Then, last week I had a crazy thought, one that I excused immediately. The thought that I could run a MacBook Pro 15” Retina as my main computer. I excused it, but it kept coming back into my head. I looked up how the MacBook Pro Retina (MBPR) would handle adding 2 additional monitors and was surprised to see it does so well. So that settled it. I had waited long enough and mulled over tons of options. I bought the MBPR and use that to connect to 2 of my 3 Monitors, and the 3rd Monitor is connected to my MacBook Air. I use Teleport to use one mouse and keyboard for both as well.
In conclusion, I’m quite happy with the switch after using this as my setup for a few days. I still have some complaints about OSX, but I doubt I’ll ever find an operating system I actually find intuitive enough to be excited about. I’ll be adding another blog post in the near future about my computer setup, as well as some pros and cons of the decision I made.