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Big Mac

February 3rd, 2009 by admin

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m no Mac fan. In fact, I could almost be considered one of those Macbashing, Gates is Great Microsoft fans. The thing is, I’ve used a Mac at the office for about the last 4 years and have had nothing but problems with it. It’s not stable, it’s not fast and it’s not nice to use. Sure it was an old PowerPC G5 with not a lot of ram, but it really shouldn’t be that bad, or so the Mac fans keep telling me.


So the other day it was out with the old and in with the new. I managed to inherit a Mac Pro. Finally something with a bit of pace. So far, it’s a lot better. It hasn’t frozen yet and USB still works.
What I like so far:
Firewire 800, with my firewire card reader and UDMA Lexar CF cards, copying images is ridiculously fast.
It’s stable, the old one used to freeze anything USB, crash in various applications, corrupt files, randomly display errors, and any number of other faults. So far so good.
Speed, it’s not instantly obvious as to how fast it is, it doesn’t feel all that much faster (our network is the bottleneck) but timing some benchmarks in Photoshop it’s actually quite fast.
Boot up, mere seconds. The old one and my old PC took minutes.

What I still don’t like:
The keyboard, Too hard, too small.
Mac OSX, it’s the mac way or bust. One thing I love about MS software is that there are often many ways of performing the same task. Mouse, 3-4 different keyboard shortcuts for the same function. This is lacking for me in the Mac. Sure some of it is the applications fault, but it still is a core OS thing that you can’t really navigate around the OS without a mouse.

6 Responses to “Big Mac”

  1. Stewart Says:

    Hey Mark,

    To enable full keyboard access throughout the dialog boxes and menus goto:

    System Preferences > Keyboard & Mouse > Keyboard Shortcuts and then at the bottom select the radio button next to All Controls.

    That will give you full control via the Tab key through all the dialog boxes, a quick note, to select a button which has an outline of blue around is use the SPACEBAR, to select a box which is filled in use the RETURN/ENTER key, it’ll save you much tabbing around :D

    - Stewart

  2. admin Says:

    yeah done that, and it helps but it’s still not the same.
    Try moving files from one drive to another on mac, pretty easy on PC with the KB, buggered if I can figure it out on the mac.

  3. Anthony Says:

    you could always install windows on your mac via bootcamp :)

  4. Mike V Says:

    I’ve been a Mac user forever (since the Lisa days) and I’ve found the Intel Macs are way, way better than anything that came before.

    A really good PC can be as good as an Intel Mac, but it’s a bit of a black are to put together a really stable PC.

    If you can put together a PC as good as an Intel Mac, then all power to you as you know your stuff.

    Those keyboards (as appear in your image) are pretty sucky.

  5. J Says:

    Thanks Stewart, that option is off by default in 10.5, but on in 10.4. Has been bugging me that I couldn’t use space for the alternate button and had to click!

    @MP – Lucky you, I still have to use an iCrap… MacPron would be nice!

  6. Franks Says:

    some handy keyboard shortcuts for you Mark!

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