Major Apple purchases

2017-09-19

in Economics, Geek stuff, Internet matters, Photography

It’s crazy how demanding web browsers have become.

Both my main computers are somewhat old, but they can run modern 3D games at low graphics settings and perform computationally-intensive tasks like converting RAW files to JPG. Nonetheless, I find both my iMac and my MacBook Pro routinely struggling to run GMail in Safari, Firefox, or Chrome.

If I wasn’t a PhD student, I would probably have replaced both computers years ago.

Tracking back through my archives, I have some records of major Apple purchases:

  • My 20 GB 4th gen iPod was $389 in 2004;
  • my 14″ 1.33 GHz G4 iBook was $1990 in 2005 (that was the computer I brought to England and used exclusively in Oxford);
  • my top-of-the-line 24″ iMac was $2,249 in 2008 (a gift to self for being gainfully employed, and the computer I am typing on now);
  • In May 2010 I paid $35 for Mac OS X 10.6.3 Snow Leopard!
  • I got one of many 160 GB iPod Classics for $279 in 2010 (still the best MP3 player ever; I need to replace the hard drive in my current one); and
  • I got my 13″ MacBook Pro for $1649 in 2011

I am pretty tied into the OS X universe. That’s how all my projects (academic, photographic, activist) are organized, including encrypted archives and backups.

I would love to get a Mac Pro (though apparently those available now are outdated and expensive) or an iMac Pro (not out yet, first-of-a-kind Apple products tend to have big problems, and crazy expensive at $5000+).

All told, I would prefer to avoid the all-in-one design. My current iMac has a great screen, but inadequate processing power for current applications. It cannot be used as a display for a faster computer.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

. September 19, 2017 at 11:34 pm
Milan June 1, 2018 at 9:01 pm

I have looked into a lot of options, from the ‘trashcan’ Mac Pro to the iMac Pro to waiting for Apple to release a new Mac Pro to building my own Hackintosh.

Now, I am thinking seriously about getting a high-end 5K retina iMac as the replacement.

The current Mac Pro is antiquated in its hardware, non-upgradeable, and would require buying a new monitor. The iMac Pro is crazy expensive. There isn’t too much reason to hope the next Mac Pro will be a big expandable tower like a lot of power users want, as opposed to a tiny slab full of ports for plugging into expensive accessories.

As for the hackintosh approach: (a) I don’t have the technical competence to do this without driving myself insane and tearing out my hair and (b) a Mac OS update could trash the thing at any time.

I honestly devoted some thought to switching to Windows, but I just don’t think it’s happening. All my filesystems and workflows are Mac OS based, and I really like the open source roots at the base of Mac OS, no matter how keen the company has become on making everything proprietary and under control.

I’ll wait to see what if anything Apple produces in the desktop line at WWDC next week, then start weighing how justified the various CPU, graphics card, RAM, and storage upgrade options will be over the life of the machine.

I’m excited that I’ll have something snazzy to write my dissertation on!

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