Cougar v iMac

  shellship 19:10 11 Nov 2007

The time is coming when I wish to replace my slowing and ageing Dell 8200. Love the idea of the new Intel Apples (a change anyway) but I can get a high spec Cougar for a little over £500 compared with a bit over £1,000 for an Apple. I know this subject has been raised before but any thoughts on the comparison would be appreciated.

  shellship 17:32 12 Nov 2007


  Quiet Life 23:17 15 Dec 2007

You did not get much response to your question.
I bought the 20inch 2.4ghz a week ago as it came with the Leopard update disc and I wanted to run Windows through Boot Camp while enjoying and learning the Apple experience.
The Leopard disc was faulty and I contacted Apple support for a new disc. After a 20 minute wait the Apple response was take the disc back to where you bought the machine and they will order a new one. Not convenient for me but at least I ascertained Apple do not have any e-mail contact which did not impress me much.
When the machine came out of sleep it made a buzzing noise for several minutes which might have been normal but but a posting on the Apple Forum produced no answers. However it was there I dicovered from numerous postings that the monitors on these new aluminium machines had many problems with colour and light variations. On scrolling a grey bar, like used by this forum, the colour varied from grey to light grey to almost white. A solid light grey photo on the whole screen was very patchy. In addition using the mighty mouse scroll gave an unacceptable flicker on the screen. Accessing this forum for a fraction of a second produced solid lines round all the postings before the proper page appeared.
Files like avi,wmv etc do not play in Quicktime and you are referred to paying sites to get the necessary codecs. The is a free copy of an earlier version of Windows Media Player available but after downloading the first time I used it it crashed the computer. I-macs are meant to be able to force the closure of programs without affecting the operating system but this did not work and I had to disconnect.
I decided the screen and scrolling flickering were really not on. I was paying a BMW price for a Ford Edsel and I returned the machine.
The maximum size partition for Windows under Boot Camp is 33gb.
I think the latest PCs that are offering Blue Ray and external SATA connections are better value.
It also seems that there is as much adverse criticism of Leopard as there has been of Vista.
Look at he Apple Forum before you make any decision. Sorry if I am too late but I noly returned the i-mac yeterday.

  bremner 15:45 16 Dec 2007

There is only a limit of 32GB on a FAT32 partition under Bootcamp. Choose NTFS and the partition can be any size.

At work we run 30+ Macs, all running Leopard and XP Pro. They have been the most reliable computers we have ever had. We all have WMP running under Leopard without problems. There is also VLC for Mac which is an excellent alternative.

You seem to have been very unfortunate. Our aftersales service with Apple has been very good.

An issue that has arisen with the new iMac is the shiny screen. I know of some people who do not like this and say they would prefer Apple to offer the option of a 'normal screen'

Cougar -

The iMac is a very good machine. It offers the benefits of an all in one package with OS X and the convenience of being able to dual boot with Windows.

The main drawback in my view is cost, also it is a fact that Leopard needs RAM, 1GB an absolute minimum but 2GB makes a big difference.

I changed to an iMac 18 months ago and is the best machine I have personally owned. I rarely use the Windows boot, having found OS X to be so nice to use.

  Quiet Life 17:36 16 Dec 2007

Thanks for your input bremner. There are a lot of people looking for the older white model that you have as it uses a different type of screen and has a good reputation like the very first i-macs. The new aluminium machines are produced in China and perhaps there are quality control problems like Mitel have had.
Apple have already said that they are going to use LEDs instead of back lights. So I will wait till these machines arrive before trying again. No doubt having 30 machines gives you a bit more leverage with after sales.
I did not find the glassfront of the screen a problem when the machine was running although it has a lot of reflections when off. It is a stunning looking machine and almost as easy to move about like a portable. There have not been t the same number of screen problems posted about the 24inch but it is very expensive.
It will be interesting to see what Apple do about the 20inch model as they do seem to have problems with the screen.

  shellship 14:11 17 Dec 2007

Thought I had made a last post but it must have got lost in the ether. Money being the root of all evil I have become even more mean and ditched the idea of the Apple and just taken delivery of a Cougar. Fine so far but seems to be lacking in free PCI slots. Cougar say that very few m/bs now have lots of free slots - ouch.

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