4th Year

September 30th 2006. Just over three years ago. It cost more than other similar hardware but it looked oh so desirable. It was all new to me but yet quickly became familiar. It was the day I took delivery of an Apple iMac. Three years have actually flown by and a lot has happened in that time. Unusually for me though one thing that hasn’t changed is the hardware I use. I’m still using the 24″ iMac which is running really well with Snow Leopard. Three months after getting the desktop I picked up a Macbook Pro which I still use today. What’s interesting is that prior to switching I would buy a new PC every couple of years. Maybe that was to do with PC gaming that I used to do more off, maybe it was the slowdown over time that I noticed with Windows. All I know is that for an initially high outlay compared to a same spec PC I’ve gotten far more use out of both my Mac’s.

Another key point is that the three years have been relatively hassle free. My iMac failed to boot once but I restored from a backup disk and it’s been fine ever since losing only a couple of day’s worth of files which wasn’t much. Touch wood. During that time I’ve upgraded the O/S twice to Leopard and recently Snow Leopard. The upgrades have left me with a faster O/S each time which was impressive and surprising.

One change that I’ve worked on over the last three years is making sure the software I use on the Mac is either open source or I pay for it. It’s taken a while as I couldn’t afford to buy everything at the one time nor find good alternatives to some expensive software but I’m there now. Torrenting makes it easy to get any app you need to be honest but I felt more and more uncomfortable about stealing software especially as the Mac development community is smaller, tighter and does make some great software. Definitely the right thing to do.

So that leads me into year 4. No need to upgrade, everything working fine. Except my head. More specifically my gadget head. One thing I’ve toyed with buying for a couple of years was an Apple TV or a Mac Mini for the TV. I’ve an ever growing library of digital media and I want to rip my DVD collection. Out of the two products I’d prefer a Mac Mini – more flexibility when it comes to player choices with Plex being the favourite at the moment. But I don’t want a third computer!

So the plan I have formulating…

  • Sell iMac and replace with Mac Mini for under TV.
  • Sell Macbook Pro and replace with new Macbook Pro with larger local disk.
  • Pick up a good monitor (not Apple as prices are eye watering!) for use on desk.
  • Pick up a Drobo as I’m running out of disk space as my local media grows.

That would leave me a great setup that should do me for a few years except it will cost money that I don’t really need to spend but when has that stopped me before. Mmmmm. Also, new Mini’s and iMac’s are rumoured this month both at a cheaper price. Interesting.

I might not know what hardware I’ll end up using but I do know I’ll be sticking with Apple over the coming years. Hopefully year 4 will be as trouble free as the last three.

4 Comments

  1. I'm similar to you except that I'm finding that a faster Mac is needed for me, for the stuff I'm doing at the moment. So we've ordered a 27″ iMac with the Quad Core i7. Am tempted to also get a Mini for under the telly as the PS3 and 360 just don't quite cut the mustard as streaming devices.

  2. I'm similar to you except that I'm finding that a faster Mac is needed for me, for the stuff I'm doing at the moment. So we've ordered a 27″ iMac with the Quad Core i7. Am tempted to also get a Mini for under the telly as the PS3 and 360 just don't quite cut the mustard as streaming devices.

  3. The i7 looks to be a great buy. Tempted to push the button myself but have a few things ahead of it in the purchase charts like insurances, Christmas etc. I'm also running out of disk space on my externals so need to stand up a long term solution. Looking at Drobo and alternatives. Once that and a new router are out of the way it's then on to the Mac's.

    I really think nothing can touch the Mini alongside Plex or Boxee for under the tv. Costs more but gives you ultimate flexibility. Can also act as an always on device for downloading. My initial thoughts were a Mini under the tv and a new laptop and screen to replace older iMac and laptop. The i7 has made me rethink that plan. Needs a small lottery win though to be practical.

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