Sunday, 12 August 2007

Me and My Apple TV

After my experience with a Mac I decided to buy one of those new Apple TV's with the 160GB hard drives.

Syncing the Apple TV with my iTunes library took about 4 days straight of syncing as my iTunes library is about 100GB (music and podcasts) and transferring all that over a wireless 802.11g connection was very slow (it is a lot quicker to use an Ethernet cable but I did not have one to connect my MacBook to my Apple TV). Although at first it took a long time to copy all my library over to my Apple TV now whenever I rip a new CD or download a new podcast it takes a few minutes for the data to be copied to across, I think this is because there is not as much data as there was the first time around.

My original plan was to rip all my music CDs in an Apple Lossless format and to hook up my Apple TV up to my AV receiver. I found the audio quality of my music albums not too my as good as listening to my CDs from my CD player but the audio quality is still good.

I found the best thing about having an Apple TV was the ability to sync all my Podcasts and watch them on my TV.

So far the Apple TV has been a good purchase but like my other Apple products it gets stupidly hot.

Making the Switch

For the past few weeks I switched over from PCs to Macs.

I bought a refurbished MacBook and a 23" Apple Cinema Display as a desktop replacement.

Previously I had never used OS X before but so far I have found it to be very easy to use. The learning curve is very low for what I use it for. It syncs in perfectly with my iPod (I would have been very surprised if it didn't) and I was able to transfer over all my old files. I ripped all my CDs to iTunes and I just started using iPhoto to edit my photos. I managed to synced my phone with iCal and Address Book. I also found install and uninstalling applications to be very easy.

I liked my MacBook so much I bought a MacBook Pro too.

I have not totally switched over as I running Windows (for applications such as Visual Studio) under VMWare Fusion. I had originally planned to use boot camp but I found running Windows virtually to be a better solution as I can use both operating systems at the same time and with the Unity feature I can run Windows applications inside the OS X desktop environment. Installing operating systems virtually is very useful as I don't need to partition my hard drive and I can just delete the OS when I don't need it anymore. Creating virtual machines allowed me to install and try out a few Linux operating systems under VMWare. Currently I have Ubuntu 7.04 and Kubuntu 7.04 installed and I am trying them out.

Both Mac's I bought came with the standard amount of RAM (1GB for the MacBook and 2GB for the MacBook Pro) as Apple charge stupid prices for RAM upgrades so I bought extra RAM from Crucial and fitted them myself (very easy to do as long as you have the correct screwdriver).

All in all I found Macs to be great to use for every day tasks but the only downside is that both my MacBook and MacBook Pro generate more heat than a radiator!