If you’re looking for a basically-familiar GUI experience, Ubuntu is the way to go. If you’re unsure, just make a [live USB](http://www.ubuntu.com/download/help/try-ubuntu-before-you-install) and try it out.
3D rendering (I use Kerkythea) is **amazingly** fast compared to the same machine running windows …everything is, really. I’m not sure what’s available for vfx editing; not something I’m into.
to clarify, Kerkythea is a rendering program -available for Linux, Mac, and Windows- not a linux distro (wasn’t sure if that was clear in my earlier post).
Fedora is good too. You might look at centOS. For most people, I still think Ubuntu is a great place to start.
It’s funny, I’ve been using a Mac for more than a decade now but I still think it comes down to personal preference. I actually quite enjoy Windows 7 and I’m hoping Windows 8 will close the gap between my enjoyment of both OSs.
While I do all of my work (web development) and a Mac, I do bootcamp into Windows 7 to play games. I think that’s the best part about owning a mac, the fact that you can run both operating systems is fantastic.
There *are* some apps that are only available on OS X, but I think they are more ‘nice-to-haves’ rather than ‘essentials-for-design’.
My 2 cents:
I’m pretty familiar on both platforms. Currently I run both (Mac at home/mobile and PC at my office).
I’m waiting to see the dust settle on Win8 before I take the last step, but as it stands I am planning on moving my final office PC into the Mac platform and then use Bootcamp when necessary. I don’t like what I see thus far (the Metro app direction is kinda scary).
My opinion is that the Mac has a much higher number of apps specific to making a designers job easier. This isn’t true in every genre, but in web design specifically I think this is unarguably the truth. It comes down to I can certainly do my job on both platforms, doing it on my Mac is easier, more fun, and faster.
I will definitely comment on the Windows versus PC perception issue. I can without a doubt say that a client’s perception is affected by what kind of laptop you pull out. When I switched my old Dell with a MBP, it wasn’t a subtle difference in how clients reacted, it was ridiculously obvious. As stupid as it actually is, and regardless of how well you can do the job on either platform, there IS a tangible difference in perception. You could say my MBP has paid for itself a few times over :P
@JoshWhite I agree, a Dell and a Macbook Pro will result in obviously different reactions. But then, (most) Dell’s are kinda low-end….and definitely look like it.
I’m sure that if you would have pulled out a super fancy shiny Acer notebook (like this one) would have also resulted in a clearly different reaction over the Dell.
So when it comes to client perception, I’d say it’s best to just come up with a good looking machine – but not necessarily a Mac. :)
Just don’t buy a laptop to work, if you need to show your work to your customers, buy some nice looking PC with a big screen.
Start looking for a good Factory Calibrated Monitor(One reason to go MAC is their good monitors), then you must know if you need a very powerfull PC(Like to do 3D rendering), and go for a Workstation type PC, or if you not need anything of that, just go with a normal pc.
The software is your last concern when you are buying a machine, unless you allready have software(Legal).
The only thing that will make you a better web developer is to Master the tools you have, and not to buy the tools to make the work for you.
Good Luck ;)
Well, there are people (such as myself) who actually prefer working with Windows over OS X. ;)
Not that I would ever slap down $1700 for a PC laptop if I can get a really good one for half the price already (just not as shiny).
Anyways, all in all I would buy a computer for myself, and not to impress any clients in the first place.
Personal preference is what it keeps coming down to, innit! Heh
I would buy whatever you are most comfortable using and most efficient on. I am most efficient and more comfortable with my Mac having bought it in March after using Windows for development for years.
The reason I did so is purely efficiency and for the software, especially the likes of Git Tower and Codekit which don’t really have Windows alternatives.
Was totally worth the money and I’ve basically halved my development time so am delivering more work and earning more cash. However, if someone loves Windows and has all the software they need it’s best to stick with what you know and are good at.
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