Used Macbook over a used PC?

Desertrobot

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Let me start off by saying that this isn't a suggestion for a main computer, my main computer is a gaming PC which I built, so we can leave out any worries associated with that.

I'll be starting college in a couple of months and I really need a laptop. I've had a macbook in the past and as a main computer it wasn't too great (I liked to game, can't really game much on a mac), but I always kept the fact that as a secondary computer to take around it was fantastic. It was lightweight, durable, sleek, and also it looked pretty damn nice.

Over the last couple of days I've been looking around ebay for used Macbooks in the 200-300 dollar range and I've noticed that these things really don't lower in value. For 300 dollars I can't really find anything better than a Core2Duo machine, whilst in the pc category I managed to find a Dell XPS13 L321X (has 4gigs of RAM, 128GB SSD, and an i5 processor).

At this point would it be wise to settle with something like a 2008-2010 Macbook over a 2013 PC laptop? The main reasons I really want a macbook is because of the super accurate trackpad, the durability, OSX's ease of use in a portable setting, the awesome included software like iMovie (honestly they're just great computers for school), something you can't really get on much other laptops. Would it maybe be wiser to look at another price point for used Macbooks where the specs are more competitive?

Just need some advice, thanks. :D
 

ffg7

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I have a customer who bought a new mac thin book who figured he could do his online exams with it, no go as the exam site wanted internet explorer so he had to use his mother's all in 1 hp computer to the exams. can also run dual boot as 1 customer has an imac that had both mac os & xp on it til I blew both out & installed just windows 7 64bit on it.
 

Robert Cook

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well if you are going into engineering or advances mathematics or market predictions in college, a mac book might not cut some of the renderings you'll have to do. I feel it is always better to realize you are slightly over prepared, then realize at 11:50pm that your project just wont make it. Also if you are bold, you can make that laptop a hackintosh.
 

captaincharisma

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anything a macbook can do a PC will do better. plus the fact the 2013 PC will have way better hardware then that 2008 macbook. as for the software, there is much better software you can get for free on a pc then the included programs that come with a mac

 
Yeah, the Macbooks hold their value because (1) non-technical computer users like them and think they're the best thing since sliced bread. Supply and demand thus dictates that their price is higher even for older/worse feature sets. And (2) Apple made it extraordinarily difficult to tell exactly which year model Macbook you're looking at. So you have a bunch of non-technical users foolishly paying Ivy Bridge prices for a Macbook with a Core 2 Duo processor. That increases demand for even older Macbooks, which again raises their prices.

A lot of it depends on what you'll be studying in school. For anything in visual arts, and Unix programming (OS X runs a modified version of BSD Unix under the hood), I'd recommend a Macbook over a PC laptop (has to be a Macbook Pro for the visual arts though - they're the only ones with decent screens). For most everything else, I'd favor the PC. A lot of it is still up to personal taste though, and you seem to like the Macbooks.

Be careful about going to a higher price point in the used Macbook market. For $600 you can get a new Asus UX305CA, which basically has the same specs as a Macbook Air but with a beautiful 1080p IPS screen instead of the MBA's crappy TN panel.

If you plan to use iMovie a lot, I probably shouldn't be saying this here. But you can in fact run OS X in a virtual machine on a PC. The only thing stopping you is Apple's license (they say you can only run OS X on Apple hardware), and some virtual machine vendors block you from installing it (can be hacked to allow it). You mention that you already have a gaming PC. I suspect iMovie in a VM on the gaming PC will run circles around iMovie on any used Macbook in your price range.
 

Desertrobot

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Yeah I suppose at this point it isn't wise to waste so much on such a dated computer. Shame the things are so expensive.

If I had the money for a new computer maybe I'd consider it as the specs are a bit more competitive when new
 

ffg7

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I have a customer who bought a new mac thin book who figured he could do his online exams with it, no go as the exam site wanted internet explorer so he had to use his mother's all in 1 hp computer to the exams. can also run dual boot as 1 customer has an imac that had both mac os & xp on it til I blew both out & installed just windows 7 64bit on it.
 

Robert Cook

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Having had just found two mac books in the dumpster, and I am now getting them running for resale, they do look great, but the fact of the matter is hardware wise they are a joke. the mac book air from 2010 is a over glorified chrome book, and the mac book pro from 2009 rocks a killer 256 MB of VRAM. they just are not worth it. even the new ones are almost all dual cores, something that is not very great for today's world.
 

huvik

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So to sum it up. Mac's are severely over priced for the hardware you get, and it is better to get a PC in almost every situation.(unless you like flushing money down the toilet.)
 
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