Apple or Sony - or Samsung? Or???

  Mande 01:27 13 Nov 2004

Okay, I know most of you are PC users (hence the mag name I guess). But I never get to make a final decision on buying a new much-needed notebook.

I like the look of the Samsung M40 and have given it a once-over in shops. But one or two media people swear by Apple (less virus problems, more stable OS, etc).

I also like Sony's latest Vaio range.

But if I'm going to close my eyes and hand over some £1800 quid - which do I go for?

All advice appreciated.

  TomJerry 02:54 13 Nov 2004

Apple? Do you have teeth for it? I mean do you have software for it? Apple is completely different machine.

Samsung and Sony, both are excellent maker, but Samsung is cheaper.

You can get Samsung M40 for £1636 click here

  TomJerry 09:58 13 Nov 2004

possibly the best laptop for the price.

Exceptinal bright screen. Specially designed for media play etc.

Play DVD & CD and watch TV without boot up windows, so instant on for DVD play.

Qosmio is true digital media convergence simply achieved through state-of-the-art and streamlined design. It's 4-in-1 functionality combines TV, Audio, PC and DVD features in one compact package. The multiple plug-and-play ports transform the unit simply into a gaming monitor, a digital camera slide show screen, audio-out to home systems for TV and MP3s, and more! Qosmio's sleek style echoes consumer electronics design, to complement existing electronics in the home. click here

  Taran 10:31 13 Nov 2004

1. Are you trained/experienced with Apple or Windows computers ?

2. Will you be working in a particular environment that leans more towards one than the other ?

3. Do you already have a large collection of application softare ready to be installed for one platform but not the other ?

Most of the world runs Windows for both business and domestic use. Most of them also use MS Office, a string of industry standard graphics and video editing applictaions, antivirus products and similar.

I woud always say stick to what you know or if in doubt, stick with Microsoft. This is a purely practical point of view, not necessarily personal preference. More people have more chance of working with Microsoft products in their working life or using them domestically than those who will use Apple.

I love Apple Macs and have run them for years, but most of my own work is done on Windows machines.

Most businesses, academic institutions and home computers are Microsoft based and if you have a lot of application software for one platform it makes no sense to budget for the new hardware then have to march out and buy more software if the platform is different to your previous one. Either that, or you have to invest in an emulator program to allow you to run Mac OS within Windows (pointless) or Windows within Mac OS (even more pointless and borderline sacrilegious).

If you know Macs, have alll the software you need for one and will have a useful life ahead for it, I see no problem with considering one. If you don't, it's a totally pointless purchase unless you wantt o migrate from Windows for one reason or another.

My bottom line to most people is stick with the mainstream which, like it or not, is Microsoft based. At least that way your working and studying life will be catered for abound 95% of the time.

Finally, it is a myth that the Mac OS is a 'crash free' zone. Problems can hapen and althuogh they rarely do, it only adds to ill feeling for most people when confronted with a goosed Mac, especially when the solutions to reinstate the OS differ so wildly to a Windows machine. I've not had any blue screens on WIndows XP on my main computers for longer than I care to remember. I am careful what I install and run, but my usual software installation includes several programming applications, MS Office, web, graphics and video editors and all kinds of everything.

To be fair, my Macs rarely misbehave, but if you've never used one before, forget all you know, or think you know, because almost nothing can be transposed from Windows to Mac OS.

Either platform is superb and there's not much you can do on one that you can't do on the other, given the right application software and knowledge in its use. I wouldn't give my macs up for the world. The majority of people though, would be far better off staying with a known quantity than migrating to a new OS unless they can identify some compelling reasons to do so. There's a lot more involved here than buying a notebook.


  Kate B 17:12 14 Nov 2004

If I had £1,800 burning a hole in my pocket I would have a good look at the Apple Powerbook range: I use an entry-level iBook as my secondary machine and I love it dearly. Elegant, easy to use, networks happily with Windoze machines. One caveat, though - up the RAM. Most Macs ship with just 128MB, which is poxy if you're trying to do anything remotely demanding.

  Kentishman 18:33 15 Nov 2004

Taran says all that is needed. I would only add this. If you are an Apple User, then you probably would not be asking this question - you would know! Because most Apple users will use Windows at some time and will appreciate the differences. As for stability; a Laptop running XP with SP2 and a good AV system will be protected well enough and is a pretty good basis for building on.

  Mande 10:18 16 Nov 2004

Hi and thanks to all those who have responded with yr helpful and interesting posts. I am moving steadily towards the Samsung, especially as I will have to use PC at work regularly anyway. For a non tech-head there is nothing worse than riding two horses simultaneously.

I hesitate to tick the box "problem solved" as I am interested to mull as many posts on this as you out there wish to make.

On Samsung: Strange there is little general reaction about the company's notebooks to my knowledge. They have been out for some while.

  TomJerry 10:46 16 Nov 2004

it is really THE laptop of £1800 and Toshiba is still the king for laptop in terms of reliability.

A friend of mine has a Toshiba laptop over 14 years and still going, his old dad use it as a "typywriter".

  Mande 11:30 16 Nov 2004

Hi TomJerry.

I have used an old Tosh for work for a decade or so and I like their keyboard (though I dislike the new trend of leaving two 'blank' spaces on right hand side (most makes are guilty of this in fact but not Samsung or Sony). Why waste space?

However, re Qosmio: First, was tempted by either a 17 inch screen (I don't want to carry it around all that often - just if I go away somewhere for a few days) and have only seen 15 inch Qosmio version.

Secondly, from reviews it sounds like a hybrid between computer and a TV (ie: neither, nor). I am abroad a lot and so when it comes to the TV I risk losing that function as I imagine it is "tuned" to UK. This is a problem I have with DVDs as well. You find something cheap in (eg US or Mexico) bring it back - and it doesn't work.

  TomJerry 12:39 16 Nov 2004

Regional locking is just a joke and an unfair practice.

very easy to get pass it, just google for it.

  Mande 14:02 16 Nov 2004

Hi again (T/J) Thanks for that. I am only just starting up with DVDs as I want to watch a film and subtitles in various combinations. BTW, my interest in the Sony (and Samsung) is also related to fact that I have a Sony camcorder so interested to see the memory-stick facility with those two makes.

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