I had enough of Windows and decided to switch to a Mac. How did it go? In short, there is good, bad and the other.

To put it bluntly: This is largely the result of my growing frustration with Microsoft : I use Office, Teams, and Slack all day long during the workday (other people in the MS productivity ecosystem know this pain), and it seems like something goes wrong with every Windows update. Just last week, an automatic software update disabled Windows 10 on my PC and the diagnostic tools didn’t work. I called customer service (who couldn’t solve the problem) and dropped the call about 45 minutes later when I was transferred to tech support. I was only able to solve the problem with a helpful downloaded utility of indeterminate nature.

Then there are the sound problems in Windows. I have given up on using the XPS 15 7590 as a digital audio workstation (DAW). I broadcast a weekly music show on Cutter’s Choice Radio (on Tuesdays at 23:00 GMT!), and I’ve tried everything to get my microphone to match my voice while using an external mixer. A combination of latency issues, confusion over audio drivers and a growing general frustration with Microsoft led me to take the advice of my fellow DJs and buy a Mac.

So I did some research and found out that the best Macs to buy are the 2012 MacBook Pro Retina or the 2015 MacBook Pro. The 2012 models are the latest Macs that can be properly upgraded with SATA SSDs and SO-DIMM RAM, while the 2015 models are the latest Macs that have acceptable ports and an acceptable keyboard, but cannot be upgraded. I was a little worried that 2012 wouldn’t be fast enough for real-time audio, and I finally got a good price on an eBay auction for a MacBook Pro 2015 13″. That’s why I chose 2015 BPM13 for 2012.

A MacBook Pro 2015 13″ with 256GB SSD and 8GB RAM for a reasonable price of $360 + charger.

It will be great if it works, I thought.

I was overjoyed when I received the MBP 13″ a few days later, in fairly satisfactory condition. The space bar was stuck, but I was able to fix it in 15 minutes. Memba, when were you able to get the keys out of the MacBook without destroying it? I’m a meme!

First impressions

The next day I did office work and enjoyed the overall feel of the user interface. It wasn’t too difficult for me to become familiar with the user interface and operating system, since I’ve been spending a lot of time with Linux lately to get away from Microsoft. MacOS is pretty familiar to many *nix working environments (although it’s visually much neater and offers more quality of life features, like dragging and dropping files), and the layout is pretty logical. All in all, after 21 years of using Windows, it hasn’t been too difficult to switch to macOS, and macOS is very advanced.

Unlike Windows 10, it has a unified user interface and doesn’t suffer from the Windows legacy that leaves us with the current nightmare of redundant folders everywhere, such as programs, applications (x86), users, documents, settings, etc. Normally, under MacOS, everything is in place (all apps appear in the Applications folder, all preferences are in Preferences, keyboard shortcuts are intuitive, etc.) What do you think of this?

MacOS X has been the best operating system for a long time.

What I also immediately appreciated was the overall feel of the car. There is no bending, no kickback and no keyboard vibration in the chassis. It fits comfortably in the hand. Unfortunately, it’s not that comfortable on the wrists, as the sharp aluminum edges really sink into the soft skin. The keyboard itself is very nice, and coming from the classic (x20) ThinkPad keyboard, it wasn’t better, but it wasn’t much worse either. Next door: After my experience with the 2015 MBP 13 keyboard, the decision to switch to the poorly designed Butterfly keyboard is just incomprehensible. But what was Apple thinking when they got rid of that keyboard? Of course, in retrospect, we can see that Apple was in the midst of the era of better performance when it released the next-generation USB-C MacBook.

Apple’s trackpads are a favorite topic for many people in technology journalism. The tray is a good trackpad, but it still doesn’t come close to that of the Macbook, which critics so often say is banal. But is it true? The trackpad is nice. In particular, the tactile feel and cursor response are very smooth and precise. What I don’t like is that it takes half a second to right-click before the menu opens, and that often irritates me compared to the other pleasant interactions the trackpad provides. Overall, it’s a high quality trackpad, but I still prefer a nice pointer with physical buttons for precision and performance.

Big Sur, Big Trouble

I was unaware of the controversy surrounding Big Sur, the latest version of macOS designed to work well with Apple’s M1 ARM silicon. What could go wrong, I thought to myself, when my Mac told me the update was available. Actually, Big Sur has some issues. Obviously, this breaks compatibility with almost all audio devices. The real reason I bought a MacBook was to simplify DJing and live audio streaming, and it turned out to be the main reason it failed. From November 2020 until a few weeks ago, Pioneer’s position was simply not upgradable. When the first Big Sur Racers for the XDJ-RX2 came out in late February, they didn’t work for me. Unfortunately, to get back to macOS Catalina, I had to wipe the entire computer and reinstall from the Catalina USB key I created (Team-R only allows me to reinstall Big Sur). I did it a few days ago, I reconfigured everything and now everything works as it should.

I loved the sidebar with lots of settings and widgets in a clean user interface, and I miss the ability to look through the desktop through a jumble of applications with a single click or gesture (which often bothers me), but at least my device drivers work now.

What I missed.

When you use Windows all day, you forget things that work well and tend to notice only minor annoyances and inconsistencies. It’s a truism that you don’t notice what you had until it disappears, and one of the things I missed most was the ability to quickly drag a window or application to one side of the screen and have it quickly and automatically appear in two parts. It’s such a productivity booster, I’m shocked Apple never added this feature (I know there’s a third-party application you can pay for).

I also often missed the simplicity of file management under Windows. It is very easy to drag and drop files from one area to another or to other applications. On the PC I took it for granted, but because the Mac has *nix origins, it’s not always as easy to move files between applications and the Finder as it is on the PC.

I also missed my touch screen. Especially since the MBP has a gorgeous screen. It seems to me that I should be able to touch it (especially since Big Sur looks like iOS), but no! I’m still under the impression that Tim Cook’s ego is a problem, but I hope Apple wakes up and realizes that Touch is a glaring omission for the Mac, and it’s becoming increasingly clear how macOS and iOS fit together. And while I like the keyboard in general, I don’t like that there is no delete key (delete is a backspace) and that you have to press fn+del to get the actual delete.

I was surprised by the relatively poor experience with third-party apps on the Mac. Apple doesn’t like it when you install something that isn’t digitally signed, so you have to get around this by clicking Ctrl + right and opening it that way. Otherwise you will simply be excluded from the application process. I know it’s mostly a safety issue, but I’m not a fan of the wall garden at all.

Talk about right-clicking: I was missing on the desktop (Finder) the robust options I have in my Windows context menu, such as. B. compressing, obtaining goods, shipping, etc. I also miss the fact that it is much easier and faster to right click on a PC : As I said, I prefer physical buttons to the keyboard, and I don’t like having to press two fingers instead of just the right side of the keyboard. It’s a subjective question, of course, but I prefer mechanical action to tactile illusion.

Finally, I miss the ability to update and repair my laptop. My main PC has a 2TB USB flash drive that’s getting full, and I’m looking for a 2-bay laptop for my next upgrade to easily get 4TB of storage. With a 256GB drive and 8GB of RAM on the 2015 MBP13, that’s not so easy. Upgrading the RAM is not possible, but upgrading the SSD is technically possible (though very expensive), as Apple has given the SSD its own connector.

Bottom line

For now, I’ll continue to use my Mac for work and music because I love the keyboard, screen, and overall feel of the machine – and of course the operating system is an upgrade for me after using Windows for over two decades. For only $400 use, my MBP is as good a workstation as my ThinkPad x330, and I love using it as a workstation and DAW.

Would I pay full price? No, it’s too much work against Mac right now. While Microsoft often disappoints my non-existent expectations, I’ve spent the last six years doubting Apple’s ability to keep moving in the right direction. The ARM M1 chips are a good start and I like the way the company handles privacy and data protection, but the company’s anti-consumer attitude over the past few years is a wake-up call for me.

I don’t see myself going back to Big Sur after indulging in an update, and it made me realize that MS has done a relatively excellent job of maintaining application compatibility across countless Windows versions over the years. Of course there were some bumps along the way, but since the Mac is still considered the standard for DAW work, I noticed that Big Sur is all broken up when it comes to audio drivers. Apple has already made a Pismo Powerbook G3 though, so I wouldn’t rule them out completely. For now, I will continue to use my PC for home media playback and viewing, and my MacBook Pro for mobile devices and music.

Oh, and there’s a little side effect that being involved with Macs has brought about…. interest in Mac OS9. I bought an iBook G3 in 2003, just to feel a little nostalgia for the OS9. Expect more in the near future!

Have you tried switching from your first choice of computing platform? How did it go?

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frequently asked questions

WillValorant ever come to the Mac?

Languages

Is it difficult to switch from Windows to Mac?

Before you spend money on Apple-compatible Microsoft Office licenses, look at the applications that come pre-installed on every Mac computer. … In general, the transition from PC to Mac is not difficult. It just takes some time, skill and patience.

Why should I switch from Windows to Mac?

To make matters worse, the Windows operating system works better on an Apple computer than on a PC. The seeds disappear and the system works much easier. Since the introduction of the OS X operating system, which allows Apple users to run PC applications on a Mac, the world has changed and expanded for Apple users.

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