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Five Reasons to Get a PC Over The Macbook Pro, or Not

By Justin Heyes on July 18th 2017

Looking back at some of the greatest rivalries – Ali vs. Frazier, Tesla vs. Edison, Jobs vs. Gates, and Iceman vs. Maverick; the legacy of two greats will continue long after their last showdown. For photographers, the never-ending debate of which platform (macOS vs. Windows) is superior floods the forums, chats, and blogs with diehard fans in both corners.

There are some creatives, like myself, who reside in both camps enjoying the best (and worst), of what each system has to offer. Other creatives like, photographer Manny Ortiz, continue to voice their options on why to choose one system over another. In his video, Ortiz pits the latest 15” MacBook Pro vs. the Dell XPS 9560, and we’ve shared some of our thoughts on the matter below. Also, check out our list of Top Windows Alternatives to the MacBook Pro in the link below:

[REWIND: LEICA TL2 REVIEW | LESS A RANDOM TOOL & MORE A PERSONAL STATEMENT]

Cost Does Not Equal Value

There are those who drink bottom shelf coffee because it’s cheap and gets the job done (often leaving a bad taste in your mouth). On the other hand, there are those who purchase a higher quality roast, but care and deliberation were put into it to make it a more pleasing experience. There are similarities in here in computer choice.

When compared to a Macbook Pro, a similarly specced Dell may seem like the better deal costing about $1000 less, but what you essentially get is a hodgepodge of components sold at market value with an AD-ridden OS.

As any user of Leica can attest, it is not only the specs or raw performance of the machine that factor in value. A used M9, or even an M8 for that matter, cost more than a new A7,  and it isn’t because the M9 is a better camera, it is the perceived value placed on it that ‘justifies’ the cost. A similar value is placed on Apple products in general, often retaining value for longer.

USB-C/Thunderbolt

The USB type C ports that reside in the new MacBook Pros are the evolution of technology. Not too long ago, diehards were clutching on to their old Parallel and PS/2 and refused to give into a newer standard. As what happened then will almost always eventually, popularity will wane, and USB-C will be everywhere.

AMD vs. NVidia

This is another can of worms that deserves its own, separate article. In short, Apple uses AMD cards both for their lower power consumption and OpenCL superiority. NVidia tends to push their property CUDA API. With some programs, like Premiere Pro, a boost in performance can be seen with these over AMD counterparts. Meanwhile, the Apple-developed OpenCL is part of the base work of Metal, Apple’s API. Metal is baked into macOS providing a faster user experience overall, versus just for certain applications.

Conclusion

Neither system is superior to the other. Residing in both camps has its advantages, as there are pitfalls and perks to each system. Apple does tend to stay behind the curve when it comes to the newest chipset, but on the whole, it doesn’t really matter.  The slight performance gain of Kaby Lake vs Skylake of AMD vs NVidia is often not worth it for piece of mind. At the end of the day, if it gets the job done for you then it’s a good system for you.

About

Justin Heyes wants to live in a world where we have near misses and absolute hits; great love and small disasters. Starting his career as a gaffer, he has done work for QVC and The Rachel Ray Show, but quickly fell in love with photography. When he’s not building arcade machines, you can find him at local flea markets or attending car shows.

Explore his photographic endeavors here.

Website: Justin Heyes
Instagram: @jheyesphoto

9 Comments

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  1. Iphone Support

    It is a fact that many users prefer Pc over Mac and still don’t want to switch to Mac. There are also some people who want to switch from Mac to Windows for ease of doing. iphone customer service feels that Mac is a device which gives uniqueness but Windows is user friendly.

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  2. Andy Martin

    To whomever is listening….  I have a background as a PC tech.  I was also a Microsoft Engineer who worked full time in the banking industry. My job was to maintain servers, workstations and fault tolerance. I am now a full time Photographer. 

    It’s true that anything you can do on a Mac you can also do on a PC. 
    Here is my advise. Buy Mac, period.  Buy a Mac if only for the reason of keeping virus free. Even with virus protection you are still vulnerable with a PC and if attacked, you could be down for weeks. 

    Also, PC components tend to need replacement far sooner than Mac components.

    My 2cents worth…

    Oh and Have a backup plan people.

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  3. Pierre Dunbar

    Great article. As someone who is coming from corporate, I have only used pcs until now. It has been tough for me to adjust to using a mac even though it does seem to be a bit quicker than the pc. 

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  4. Wally Brooks

    The biggest reason deals with 10-bit color depth.  I believe only the latest MacBook has 10-bit color depth.  PC’s  have supported this for years now and Apple for all of its carefully crafted cult like status is a laggard.  

    For the non-gear heads out there you need the OS, PC hardware, Graphics card,  Monitor, and Post Processing software to be 10-bit compatible to get optimum results.  Lightroom is not 10-Bit Photo Shop is!

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  5. Njoi Fontes

    As this video shows, unless you only use final cut pro, there are zero reasons to buy a Mac nowadays. The Dell XPS 15 is considerably faster, has an awesome touch screen with zero bezels (yes touch screen are awesome and once you have it, you cant go back), has way more ports and btw it also has usb type c with thunderbolt, beside all the other ports essential to a photographer. The quality of the hardware is very similar indeed and you won’t be left wanting with the dell xps 15. 

    Another great alternative is the surface book with performance base (much more expensive but with an awesome pen and the ability to become a tablet) and the Razer blade 14 (which a NVidia 1060 inside). 

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    • Justin Heyes

      The are plenty of Mac-only applications that are good reasons to stay with an Apple branded machine. 

      When compared to the Late 2016 Macbook Pro the SPX is only marginally faster in Single core performance (less than 2%), but the Mac is fast in multithread performance.

      The USB-C on the XPS has thunderbolt,  and can still charge the laptop slowly. the NVidia 1050 requires a bigger power supply than the AMD on the Mac.

      Windows 10 doesn’t properly handle high-DPI screens. Almost all device have scaling problems

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  6. Douglas Bain

    “I’ve gotten a virus on my Mac before”  Um, no… You haven’t. I really wish people would stop referring to things like malware as a virus. It’s not even near the same thing. The last virus in the wild on a mac was on OS 9.  Was this kid even born then?  That said, in all the years I was running Windows, my computers had never gotten a virus. Trojan/worm, yes. I think I tried testing out the I love you bug just to see what all the hoopla was about. Then f-disk’d that sucker. lol

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    • Hagos Rush

      LMAO – I absolutely love your response because it was literally Word for Word what I said while watching .

      I use both Mac and Windows and honestly I don’t install anti-virus software on my windows machine…because I also don’t download random files from the internet.

      I have been using Macs since 2006 and I want to purchase a new windows machine…I really do…I’m not in love with the OS. However, that being said I would build a hackintosh (windows parts – Mac OS) on a laptop if they could support the latest hardware.

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    • Andy Martin

      Regardless of what others have told you or your past experiences….. With a PC you have to keep up with the MS Windows security updates with diligence. And your virus protection needs daily attention. Even if everything is up to date there is STILL a chance that you are open and vulerable to attack. 

      This is an area where you can’t neglect. And it just takes one time to be hit. Can you afford to be down for a couple weeks while the professionals recover your system? I hope you keep backups.

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