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Via Garibaldi 8

Computer Advice

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So I'm bored (and sick of my current laptop (Fujitsu)), but also conflicted about what to buy.  I want something of quality (preferably not Made in China, which is almost impossible)).  I'm considering a few options, including getting an Apple product (i.e. Made in USA desktop).  A few questions:

 

-Does anyone have the high-end Apple desktop (Made in USA one) and if so any feedback?

-What are some of the high-end laptops out there aside from Apple? Any Windows based ones? Would like something with decent sound quality and build quality that isn't as heavy as a ton of bricks.  I wouldn't mind having the Apple desktop, provided I can have a Windows based laptop because I don't want to switch to an Apple phone.  (I prefer Android phones, particularly HTC)).

-Also considering custom made USA laptops... Wondering about the quality of those??

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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To help you with this, we'd have to know what you're specifically doing with the computer.

 

As in getting a computer made in the USA, good luck.

Personally, depending on what you're doing with the computer, getting an Apple would be the biggest waste of money in the entire world. But if you have money to blow, go for it.

 

Other than that, I can't help further until knowing specifics:

1. What you're going to be using it for?

2. What form-factor you are targeting?

3. Price range?

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Basically almost all motherboards are made in China or elsewhere in Asia.  There are a few good quality custom builders.  but you have to know what are you trying to do with it.  Look at the CyberpowerPC site to get an idea of what can be done.  Read the reviews at PCMag  of the various standard equipment  laptops out there.

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I have a MacBook Pro 13 Retina. The second highest spec'd one IIRC. Love it but part of what makes it so great is how everything works together with my iPhone, all my calls and texts (and lots of other stuff I can do and didn't get around to setting up) are on both my Mac and my phone. If you don't have an iPhone there's really no point to a Mac anymore with the new OS IMHO, I know someone who had a Galaxy S5 and got a Mac and switched to the iPhone right away. I love the interface and all that much more than Windows too and I've been using Macs since before Yosemite and iOS8 where they started really making both work together so maybe you would like using a Mac without an iPhone but for me I can't see myself using one without the other.

 

And by the way, in the end it's all made in China. You get something "made in USA" all the crap inside is still made in China. 

Edited by Orion VII 4 Life

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To help you with this, we'd have to know what you're specifically doing with the computer.

 

As in getting a computer made in the USA, good luck.

Personally, depending on what you're doing with the computer, getting an Apple would be the biggest waste of money in the entire world. But if you have money to blow, go for it.

 

Other than that, I can't help further until knowing specifics:

1. What you're going to be using it for?

2. What form-factor you are targeting?

3. Price range?

Well this current laptop was around $1,500.00 when all was said and done.  I want something with a good build quality that is reliable with a solid operating system that I can get roughly 4 years out of.  I've dropped this one a few times here at home and also when traveling and it still works just fine so that's important.  As for what I'll be using it for, I work with all sorts of files.  Many of my clients use Macs since they are either graphic designers or work with graphic designers working in marketing so something that is good on that end along with media would be great (hence another reason I would consider a Mac and/or something high-end).  Ideally I'd like two laptops or a desktop (Mac Pro) and a laptop.  Need one solely for business and another for pleasure.  Price range can be $1,500 - $3,000 as long as it's of quality.

 

Basically almost all motherboards are made in China or elsewhere in Asia.  There are a few good quality custom builders.  but you have to know what are you trying to do with it.  Look at the CyberpowerPC site to get an idea of what can be done.  Read the reviews at PCMag  of the various standard equipment  laptops out there.

Yeah I was reading the reviews earlier. I'm also considering a few US companies that make specialized laptops. 

 

I have a MacBook Pro 13 Retina. The second highest spec'd one IIRC. Love it but part of what makes it so great is how everything works together with my iPhone, all my calls and texts (and lots of other stuff I can do and didn't get around to setting up) are on both my Mac and my phone. If you don't have an iPhone there's really no point to a Mac anymore with the new OS IMHO, I know someone who had a Galaxy S5 and got a Mac and switched to the iPhone right away. I love the interface and all that much more than Windows too and I've been using Macs since before Yosemite and iOS8 where they started really making both work together so maybe you would like using a Mac without an iPhone but for me I can't see myself using one without the other.

 

And by the way, in the end it's all made in China. You get something "made in USA" all the crap inside is still made in China. 

I have used Macs before at another job (laptop and desktop) and would've been using them again had I gotten this other job last year I interviewed for. A lot of offices either use Dell or Macs so I'm familiar with them.  Part of the reason I'm considering a Mac is because I'm sick of Windows and would like the option of using a more stable operating system at home.  I would still likely need Windows for work though, so I would like to have both.

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If your employers and clients use Mac's, ideally it would be logical to use the same platform. It would be simply easier for you.

 

Because of the above statement, I could understand the route of Apple for a desktop as well but in cases like these, no matter what, a desktop environment should be custom-built personally. It can be ultimately cheaper in many cases unless you need to use the Quadro/FirePro graphics cards; you'd then might just consider the Mac Pro then.

 

Windows is pretty stable if you know what you're doing. Same with Mac OS or vanilla Linux.

 

Either way, depending on what route you take, I can certainly help in the PC market. Mac's, I'm not too fond of.

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If your employers and clients use Mac's, ideally it would be logical to use the same platform. It would be simply easier for you.

 

Because of the above statement, I could understand the route of Apple for a desktop as well but in cases like these, no matter what, a desktop environment should be custom-built personally. It can be ultimately cheaper in many cases unless you need to use the Quadro/FirePro graphics cards; you'd then might just consider the Mac Pro then.

 

Windows is pretty stable if you know what you're doing. Same with Mac OS or vanilla Linux.

 

Either way, depending on what route you take, I can certainly help in the PC market. Mac's, I'm not too fond of.

Quite frankly Windows 7 Professional has been a mess for me.  I held on to my old Fujitsu laptop as long as I could which had Windows XP but, I of course beat the hell out of that laptop so I had to get rid of it eventually. I'm not wild about anything after Windows XP and that's why I'm considering getting a Mac as well to have the option of both.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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Laptop wise, if you do have to go the Mac route and don't require to transition to USB C, you don't have to shell out money for the newer models. The past models can still pretty much do their jobs, '13,'14  in particular which you could probably snag for cheaper.

 

Business-wise, Lenovo (formally IBM)'s ThinkPads are a good start to look through. I don't like Dell because of bloatware, but I hear their Latitude/Precision series are not bad for the work station environment.

 

For regular web-surfing, streaming, or checking e-mails, honestly anything would do. If you only need a web browser environment and are connected through Google a lot, the Chromebook route would  be a sufficient choice and I would recommend the C720 model from Acer.

 

Desktop route, like I said in previous posts, building your own can cut down on prices. However, if you are keen on choosing Mac over PC, there is still ways around it by building a 'Hackintosh' which could still be cheaper than a Mac Pro yet still function the same.

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Laptop wise, if you do have to go the Mac route and don't require to transition to USB C, you don't have to shell out money for the newer models. The past models can still pretty much do their jobs, '13,'14  in particular which you could probably snag for cheaper.

 

Business-wise, Lenovo (formally IBM)'s ThinkPads are a good start to look through. I don't like Dell because of bloatware, but I hear their Latitude/Precision series are not bad for the work station environment.

 

For regular web-surfing, streaming, or checking e-mails, honestly anything would do. If you only need a web browser environment and are connected through Google a lot, the Chromebook route would  be a sufficient choice and I would recommend the C720 model from Acer.

 

Desktop route, like I said in previous posts, building your own can cut down on prices. However, if you are keen on choosing Mac over PC, there is still ways around it by building a 'Hackintosh' which could still be cheaper than a Mac Pro yet still function the same.

lol... I think I'm going to do some more digging and see what I come up with. You make some good points.  I just feel like what is out there these days is of poor build quality and flimsy.

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lol... I think I'm going to do some more digging and see what I come up with. You make some good points.  I just feel like what is out there these days is of poor build quality and flimsy.

Try looking at Maximum PC website  as they rate items of all parts to make a build it yourself PC.  Since this is an enthusiast website  they give lists of parts based on how many drachmas you want to spend. So you could spend $800 and build one hell of a machine from soup to nuts totally custom as you bought the parts.  They also build their own computers for articles and you can get a very good idea of how much firepower you want in this machine.They also can tell you if you need that super video card or not based on what you do.  

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For the price of a Macbook, you could build a desktop for home for about $600 and get a decent laptop.  If you absolutely need something portable and just about everyone you work with (clients or otherwise) use Macs, then go for a slightly older macbook.

 

I'd be able to say more if you were more clear - do you just store your work on a flash drive and then bring it home or will you be moving around a lot?  Do you do the majority of work outside of your apartment?  If you have Windows at home but a Mac at work or elsewhere, it might be difficult to do projects on both operating systems.

 

And a lot of hardware manufacturers are based in China or Taiwan nowadays.  MSI and Gigabyte are incredibly popular and are Taiwanese but they make great parts.  Computers may have a few components assembled in the West, but motherboards, graphics cards, and the like are almost always made somewhere in Asia.

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For the price of a Macbook, you could build a desktop for home for about $600 and get a decent laptop.  If you absolutely need something portable and just about everyone you work with (clients or otherwise) use Macs, then go for a slightly older macbook.

 

I'd be able to say more if you were more clear - do you just store your work on a flash drive and then bring it home or will you be moving around a lot?  Do you do the majority of work outside of your apartment?  If you have Windows at home but a Mac at work or elsewhere, it might be difficult to do projects on both operating systems.

 

And a lot of hardware manufacturers are based in China or Taiwan nowadays.  MSI and Gigabyte are incredibly popular and are Taiwanese but they make great parts.  Computers may have a few components assembled in the West, but motherboards, graphics cards, and the like are almost always made somewhere in Asia.

They all are designed in Taiwan and made in Red China.  Been that way for more years than I can remember.  Lot of it is due to EPA regs here which prevent the use of the chemicals used to make the boards.

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It's like you guys just completely skipped the few posts that were exchanged with VG8 and answered all the questions you just posted.

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It's like you guys just completely skipped the few posts that were exchanged with VG8 and answered all the questions you just posted.

lol... I know... I'm almost cringing as I say this but I think I'll check out the Apple store at some point just to play with the laptops and desktops, do some online reading on reviews and see what I come up with.  What I would really like is to feel a laptop in person.  I'm not interested in putting $1,500.00 down on something and not seeing it in person like I did with my last laptop.  I want to get a feel for build quality and sound quality and I would rather that someone build something for me that I can customize.  I feel as if the sound quality in laptops has come a long way and I want something that has a subwoofer in it.  In short I want a laptop that's good for work and play, portable with good build and sound quality that's durable but also doesn't weigh a ton.  As much as I hate saying this I think a Mac could offer me that.  Not sure of any Windows laptops that could do that at the moment.

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It's like you guys just completely skipped the few posts that were exchanged with VG8 and answered all the questions you just posted.

 

I asked VG8 a few questions at the end of my last post but someone else replied to me before the former did.  What's wrong with that?

 

 

I feel as if the sound quality in laptops has come a long way and I want something that has a subwoofer in it.  In short I want a laptop that's good for work and play, portable with good build and sound quality that's durable but also doesn't weigh a ton.  As much as I hate saying this I think a Mac could offer me that.  Not sure of any Windows laptops that could do that at the moment.

 

Even though some laptops have built-in woofers and the like, it's hard to beat using headphones.

 

Unfortunately, all the laptops I can think of that are actually good for work and play weigh close to 10 lbs, which is a lot to lug around if you're on the move, and are as expensive as a gamer-oriented desktop.  You might be able to get away with a $500 laptop for everyday use, but anything really intense (like a game) will probably run worse than the (R).

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I asked VG8 a few questions at the end of my last post but someone else replied to me before the former did.  What's wrong with that?

 

 

 

Even though some laptops have built-in woofers and the like, it's hard to beat using headphones.

 

Unfortunately, all the laptops I can think of that are actually good for work and play weigh close to 10 lbs, which is a lot to lug around if you're on the move, and are as expensive as a gamer-oriented desktop.  You might be able to get away with a $500 laptop for everyday use, but anything really intense (like a game) will probably run worse than the (R).

lol... I think I can swing more than $500.00.

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lol... I know... I'm almost cringing as I say this but I think I'll check out the Apple store at some point just to play with the laptops and desktops, do some online reading on reviews and see what I come up with. What I would really like is to feel a laptop in person. I'm not interested in putting $1,500.00 down on something and not seeing it in person like I did with my last laptop. I want to get a feel for build quality and sound quality and I would rather that someone build something for me that I can customize. I feel as if the sound quality in laptops has come a long way and I want something that has a subwoofer in it. In short I want a laptop that's good for work and play, portable with good build and sound quality that's durable but also doesn't weigh a ton. As much as I hate saying this I think a Mac could offer me that. Not sure of any Windows laptops that could do that at the moment.

windows(7) pissed me off for the last time at the beginning of 2012. I brought an IMac desktop (which is still running strong today) and never looked back. At the beggining of last year, i brought the 512 GB (highest capacity drive available at the time) Macbook Air for my girlfriend. Although the price tag was a little steep ($2,300 with taxes) i know it will be worth it in the long run. A mid level laptop will cost you about $1,000, and has to be replaced every 2 years or so. I wholeheartedly believe that i can get 4 or 5 years out of this thing. Even though we haven't dropped it, the build quality seems good overall. Its body is made of aluminum, not sure about the screen. The battery life is excellent and the operating speed is very snappy (wouldn't expect any less from an ssd).

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windows(7) pissed me off for the last time at the beginning of 2012. I brought an IMac desktop (which is still running strong today) and never looked back. At the beggining of last year, i brought the 512 GB (highest capacity drive available at the time) Macbook Air for my girlfriend. Although the price tag was a little steep ($2,300 with taxes) i know it will be worth it in the long run. A mid level laptop will cost you about $1,000, and has to be replaced every 2 years or so. I wholeheartedly believe that i can get 4 or 5 years out of this thing. Even though we haven't dropped it, the build quality seems good overall. Its body is made of aluminum, not sure about the screen. The battery life is excellent and the operating speed is very snappy (wouldn't expect any less from an ssd).

For what it's worth my first laptop lasted a good 5 years with me abusing the hell out of it and it wasn't really expensive. I bought it because it had Windows XP and knew that I wanted to get used to having a laptop before I spent more money on another one.  I waited a while but finally gave into getting a new laptop (primarily because I wasn't happy with any of the Windows operating systems) and paid about $1,500.00 for the one I currently have with Windows 7 Professional.  Got a nice American made laptop bag for it from a place out in Seattle that specializes in them (Tom Bihn) and that bag has been worth every cent. I've dropped it several times while getting out of taxis, etc. and it protects the laptop nicely.  I'm set to buy a few of them for just regular use (they make other bags as well) as they are of very good quality, but it would be nice to know which laptops I'll be getting.  They have bags made specifically for Macs, Fujitsus, etc. I may take a stroll to the new Apple store on the Upper East Side in a few weeks and see what they have.

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You probably won't find a computer that is made in the United States. At best, you'll find something that is assembled in the United States. However, the individual parts, such as graphics cards, motherboards, memory modules, etc, will almost certainly be made in China. Companies that assemble computers (ie. Dell, Apple) do not control where the parts come from, because they are made by separate companies. For example, Dell might buy the motherboards from Foxconn, a company that makes their boards in China. Even if Foxconn did, for example, make their boards in the United States, the smaller parts of that motherboard, such as capacitors, heatsinks, PCBs, etc may be sourced from China. The odds of you getting a computer that is made entirely within the United States is pretty low, if not impossible.

 

As for the new Macbook, its lack of I/O should be a complete deal breaker. Its "portability" is rendered a moot point because you'll have to carry adapters around for any basic task. Also, you cannot use an I/O device (ie. USB HDD) while charging your computer at the same time. Unless you can deal with that (huge) inconvenience, I strong suggest that you do not get the new Macbook.

 

I would not bet on being able to use Windows XP on any new computer, especially a Mac. Windows needs to be installed through Bootcamp on a Mac. Considering the fact that support for XP is almost 14 years old, I highly, highly doubt that Apple would bother supporting any sort of Bootcamp drivers for Windows XP. You'll probably be forced to go Windows 7 or up on this one. The same goes with PCs. I would not bet on any current day hardware having XP driver support. I know that AMD and nVidia (the two major graphics card manufacturers) have dropped XP support a long time ago, so any computer with a recent graphics card will more than likely have issues when you try to use XP. Intel, the manufacturer of integrated graphics chips, dropped support for XP a year ago, so a computer with any recent generation Intel processor (ie. the Iris Pros in some Macs) may/may not work on XP. I'm afraid that for this one, you'll either have to get Windows 7 or Windows 8. If you really despise both, you can always wait for Windows 10

Edited by YankeesPwnMets

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