Category Archives: Mac

What is the most expensive Mac?

It’s a popular misconception, amongst non-Apple computer users and even some Apple fans that purchasing anything Mac will automatically cost more than a PC or Android product. While some Apple devices do cost a bit more, the difference is often not extreme when specifications, technology and quality workmanship are all taken into consideration.

That being said, if your computing needs exceed the average consumer, it is possible to build an extremely powerful (and extremely expensive) Mac in the Apple Store. For those who are wondering what the ultimate in professional-grade Mac computing looks like and costs, a Mac Pro can be ordered for a base price of $3799.00 USD. Add in enough extras for it to keep up with video producers, photographers and other super-users and you can expect to nearly triple that price.

Here is how the configuration of the ultimate Mac Pro came together:

  • Processor: Make that two processors. For an extra $2400.00, upgrade to two 3.06 GHz six-core Intel Zeon processors, offering 12 cores in all.
  • Memory: If the standard 12GB just won’t cut it, for $1950.00 bump up to a whopping 64GB of DDR3 EDD SDRAM spread out over eight slots.
  • Storage: For the ultimate in storage, utilize the four bays in the Mac Pro tower and fill each with a 512GB solid-state hard drive. The first will cost an additional $600.00 with the remaining three at $750.00 a piece.
  • Graphics: For the latest in graphics work, ideal for designers and producers, two state of the art ATI Radeon 5770 1GB graphics cards fan be powered by the Mac Pro. Affordable compared to the other upgrades, they’ll cost an extra $250.00.
  • Optical Drive: While the Mac Pro comes equipped with a 18x SuperDrive that burns and plays both CDs and DVDs, for times when a second drive is essential, an extra $100.00 will buy two.
  • Display: The incredible computing ability of the Mac Pro, especially the quality of the graphics cards, can only be truly appreciated with the right display. A 27-inch LED flat panel Apple Cinema Display pairs with the computer nicely, for an additional $999.00.
  • Peripherals: For just $69.00, include the tremendously useful Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad with the Mac Pro. An additional $20.00 will buy the matching wireless mac compatible keyboard.
  • Additional Storage: For those whose job requires connecting to a fiber channel-based or Xsan storage network, order the computer with a quad channel 4GB fiber channel PCI Express card for $1000.00.
  • Software: Instead of ordering it from the App Store later, have iWork’s Pages, Numbers and Keynote pre-installed for $19.99 each.
  • Support: Such a significant investment needs protection. For $249.00 purchase the AppleCare Protection Plan. An additional $99.00 annually will provide One to One care, offering assistance with setup, file transferring and even training from the nearest Apple Store.

Without adding in other accessories, this incredible, full-featured Mac Pro comes in at $13,844.97 USD. Surprisingly enough, despite its level of customization the Apple Store online still claims it can be ready to go within two to four business days. Shipping is free, too.

While the price of this Mac Pro may seem astronomical, for its capabilities it’s not unreasonable. It’s not the most expensive Mac of all time, either. In 1983, one year before the production of the original Macintosh, the Apple Lisa was released, featuring such advanced technology as protected memory and cooperative multitasking. At the time it cost $9,995.00, which with inflation would be approximately $21,600.00 today.

With Apple, the saying “you get what you pay for” usually applies. Whether you’re configuring the ultimate Mac Pro or picking up a Mac Air, their computers may cost more initially but their durability and technological advancements make them excellent investments.

WiFi issues with Apple MacBook Air

It’s not news to those who own the brand-new 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Air computers, but recently it’s been discovered and confirmed by Apple that some people are experiencing Wi-Fi connectivity issues.

Of course one of the premier features of the new Air, besides less battery-intensive chipsets, is that it features faster wireless connectivity thanks to a new 802.11ac card. Of course, as with any new product bugs are possible, but it’s frustrating for many when one of the very features that the new MacBook Air was marketed on is the one that doesn’t work.

Reports released have stated that the MacBook Air Wi-Fi issues are due to networking problems with the OS X software. And fortunately, Apple is aware of the trouble and working to address it. A recent statement from the company advised that, “In the United States, Apple Geniuses and Advisors should capture MacBook Air (13-inch, Mid 2013) and MacBook Air (11-inch, Mid 2013) computers with any Wi-Fi issues.”

According to an industry insider, Apple is working to identify just what exactly is causing the new WiFi-related problems. Initially, when trying to get to the root of the problem, AppleCare advisors offered customers complementary USB-to-Ethernet adapters so their new MacBook Air could connect to the Internet without Wi-Fi. But as a result of more frequently reported Wi-Fi problems, both AppleCare and Apple Store Genius Bar employees were advised to collect any affected MacBook Air units and replace them, advising customers that they have been “captured.” The computers would then be sent back to Apple for testing so a solution can be found.

The latest news, however, is that Apple is sending out invitations to certain MacBook Air owners inviting them to participate in the company’s AppleSeed customer software seeding program in order to test a pre-release version of a new “MacBook Air Wi-Fi Update 1.0.” Apple hasn’t specified in the invitations exactly what the issue is that a software update is designed to address, but the buzz amongst those in the know is that the update focuses specifically on the Wi-Fi connectivity issues.

Further to the already-reported MacBook Air Wi-Fi connection issues, the public release of Apple’s OS X 10.8.4 public release and OSX Mavericks beta are also reported to be experiencing software issues that prevent machines from supporting the new 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard and taking advantage of the faster speeds for file transfers. Apple has yet to make it clear to the public whether they will address the same issue for current MacBook Air owners through the software update in testing or through a separate patch like the upcoming OS X 10.8.5 update.

As frustrating as it can be to purchase a new MacBook Air only to discover it has an issue that prevents you from using it for one of its primary functions, it is good to know that Apple is addressing the issue, replacing the affected computers for customers and working to solve the problem. Hopefully those who choose to accept the AppleSeed invitation will have success with their update and be able to enjoy the many excellent features included in the new MacBook Air.

Overview of the new Apple Mac Pro

Have you seen the new Mac Pro? It could arguably be the most innovative design to come out of Apple in some time – and considering what it’s packed with, it’s more than just a pretty face. When a small group of Mac users were originally showed a photo of it and asked to guess what it was, answers ranged from “beautiful vase” to “fancy trashcan.” Well, trashcan it’s not.

Apple is already promoting it as the future of computing and the center of their desktop line, and with good reason. The 9.9-inch cylindrical design is remarkable, and the polished black finish makes it truly stunning. The smooth, compact package is even more incredible when you discover just what it contains.

Components

The new Mac Pro is loaded with components, featuring gigabit Ethernet support, HDMI and multiple USB 3.0 ports. It also boasts six Thunderbolt II ports, which provide a 20G bps transfer speed 25 times faster than Firewire 800.

Furthermore, it supports daisy-chaining devices, making it perfectly capable of handling up to 36 peripherals, including multiple displays, hard drives and anything else consumers may need. Connecting all those devices will also be made easier by the lights now present on the back of the tower.

Processing Power

It’s no wonder that the innovative new Mac Pro has a CPU built to handle everything it’s capable of. The standard model is already two times faster than the current Pro, and it can be configured with up to 12 cores. This is no desktop for the average computer user; regardless of what you need it to do, this tiny workhorse will be able to keep up.

Wireless Capability

With the latest technology in every other area packed into the compact cylinder, the Mac Pro also features the latest in wireless capability. It comes standard with both 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.0.

Display

Speaking of displays, the high end graphics card that comes standard on the new Pro makes it able to handle three 4K monitors at once; perfect for super-users for whom more than one monitor is essential.

The cutting-edge technology used in the Mac Pro makes it ideal for video editors, too, with standard dual GPUs and an immense 7 teraflops of computing power.

Drawbacks

While the latest desktop in the Apple line does have it’s critics, one small downside initially came to mind, and it’s more aesthetic than anything. While the new Pro’s technology is so cutting-edge and its design so beautiful, it doesn’t come equipped with a standard hard drive. Of course that’s the future of computing, yet users are still likely to connect large-scale external drives to it. The computer can certainly handle it, but the need to plug so many peripherals and drives into it sullies its beauty. A minor concern considering it is the ultimate in Mac computing, and not a vase, as guessed.

Availability

While no specific release date has been published as of yet, Apple are already promoting the new Mac Pro on their website, hinting that it will be released later this year.

No price has been confirmed yet, either, although experts suspect it will be a minimum of $2500.00 USD. While the price tag may seem hefty, even for those of used to parting with a bit more money to have the latest Apple technology, it’s worthwhile to keep in mind that the Mac Pro truly is “professional grade.” Those who require its capabilities in order to do their jobs will likely consider it a worthwhile investment.