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At one of my previous full-time roles, I was given this Macbook Pro as my источник computer and loved it.

– Is Mac or PC Better for Graphic Designers? | CreativePro Network


Both offer access to the cloud for storage and collaboration, while the third-party video-editing software available for macOS is more robust. As far as graphic design is concerned, there is no significant difference in the software available for the Mac or PC. All the major applications, including Adobe Creative Cloud applications like Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign are developed for both platforms.

Because the Mac is often considered the designer’s computer, there are some handy tools and applications that are Mac-only.

Overall, though, more software is available for the PC, especially if you are focused on a particular industry, gaming, or 3-D renderings for architecture. Apple focuses its operating system on ease of use, introducing new features with each release that improve the user experience.

The integration from application to application enables a clean workflow. While this is most apparent in the company’s consumer applications such as Photos and iMovie, it continues through to professional tools and third-party products. While Microsoft has improved the user experience in the Windows operating system , Apple wins in the ease-of-use category. The choice may come down to your familiarity with either Windows or macOS.

Because Apple makes its computers, the quality is relatively high, and the computers are relatively expensive. Microsoft Windows runs on powerful computers and not-so-powerful computers. If you only need a computer for email and web surfing, a Mac is an overkill. The drawback of the Mac used to be the price, but if you want a Mac and are on a tight budget, check out the consumer-level iMac, which is powerful enough for graphic design tasks.

In the end, especially when starting out in design, you are probably as well off using a PC with Windows With smart shopping, you can get a powerful unit for less money than a Mac, and you can use the same design software on it. Your creativity, not the cost of the computer, determines the outcome of your work.

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You can find out more about our use, change your default settings, and withdraw your consent at any time with effect for the future by visiting Cookies Settings , which can also be found in the footer of the site. By Eric Miller Eric Miller. Eric Miller is a former Lifewire writer, freelance graphic designer, and owner of a web development and graphic design studio established in Reviewed by Jessica Kormos. Jessica Kormos is a writer and editor with 15 years’ experience writing articles, copy, and UX content for Tecca.

Tweet Share Email. In This Article Expand. Overall Findings. Graphics, Color, and Type. Only when I need one or the other to sell a prospect to gain their business…or when I need to save the world in the latest MMO.

As designers in the 80s and 90s we mocked people who were stuck using windows. Windows was seen as a platform for accountants and engineers, not creative professionals. Also remember that Illustrator on the PC languished for years. The real turn around for the PC was when Adobe decided to make the different versions equal in features and technology.

But it took a long time for the creative industry to accept that there was platform parity. The Mac suffered from being tied to processors that were falling behind due to lack of developer commitment. When some decided to try the PC for the first time and discovered it was faster, that opened the door to more PC use. Still there was a lot of Mac loyalty among designers. We loved the user experience and interface, even if it meant our hardware was not the fastest in the world. In the present we have a lot of parity in performance and software.

However their is a new trend in smaller developers creating designed-focused apps exclusively for the Mac. And these developers may decide to release versions for other platforms later and that would make the whole argument mute. I am very happy that I have been a loyal and sometimes snobbish Mac user since about I suffered through the dark 90s, not knowing if Apple would survive.

Now we all know that Apple is going to be around for a very long time and I look forward to what they have to offer in the future. I have no need or desire to move to the other platform. That makes a lot of sense and is interesting Steven, I think it actually demonstrates exactly what I brought up in my article overall.

I try to replicate my skills and results with every set of tools I can. I use both, all, anything, everything and many times nothing! I agree with you all that it is a comfort thing. Different folks are comfortable with different things. That is where their comfort zone is, and I say more power to them. Another reason why the graphic design field developed along with the Mac was that Apple was designing the platform specifically with us in mind.

Screen gamma lined up with print output, 72 pixels per inch resolution lined up with traditional point sizes in typography, and Apple and Adobe took pains to respond to the needs of graphic professionals in their hardware development. While it is true that these are no longer good reasons to prefer a Mac, when you develop a user base over decades, while at the same time emphasizing good design as a corporate strategy, you will get and retain the attention of design professionals.

Agreed, Apple has done a good job of positioning themselves as a standard. We tend to want to rationalize it, but that dominance is more a matter of marketing and tradition than performance and reality at this point.

I would argue that is in contrast to Adobe, who is also a market leader among professionals, but emphasizes marketing less and lets their customers champion their products and establish their dominance.

I only switch over to pc for projects that just cannot be done on my MAC. Call it what it is: mythology. I would say a PC user has a much better understanding of what goes on under the hood than a Mac user, unless of course they started using one yesterday. I find my Apple products now have more issues than my very stable PC, especially when the updates come. Go figure!

The Mac has for a long time let you do that to a much greater sense than a Windows computer. Windows has gotten better in recent iterations. Windows forced the user to know about things like drivers and all other manner of supporting files, so, yes, the average Windows user knew more about what went on under the hood.

The Mac user was generally able to avoid all that and focus their time an energy on the projects at hand. Healthy competition always leads to innovation for the end user. In some aspects, as this article points out, PCs may even exceed. Then again, I prefer several flavors of Mac OS to operate my perfect graphic design workflow: 1.

There was a time when the Mac was superior for graphics. My solution to the Mac price aspect was to go with a Mac Mini as my home machine. I started out with an Apple IIe many, many years ago! First, virus protection.

On a Mac, you see the error message AND what to do about it! There is no doubt that Apple customer service is far, far superior to most PC customer service. Thank You for the article. Starting out now with the option to use Opentype fonts is a big advantage to being able to swap between platforms. Back then the whole concept of font creation and digital typography was really a conversation that started with the first Mac.

And that historically is very significant. I am an IT person now, but started my career in graphic design with Macs over 25 years ago. You might say I grew up with Apple. Although I still work with computer design software and office software, I do more on the IT side now for our design based company. We also have a number of PC users as well, soI have used Windows machines as well as Macs for certain application based reasons.

My comment goes to what you were saying about the hardware — you seem to think that PCs are much cheaper than a Mac, but you fail to compare apples to apples pun intended. Apple hardware is far superior in that they include certain functionality that is superior or has to be upgraded on a pc for similar functionality.

If a pc is upgraded to the level of a Mac, then the cost becomes less of an issue. You have to upgrade any similarly equipped PC and the cost difference becomes less of an issue. Secondly, Macs just flat out work. Along with several other readers, I have been working on a Mac for years and have experienced very few problems that are hardware related over that time period. The OS is more solid. Few viruses, malware issues, and less hardware or OS failure makes it a no brainer.

I have yet to get a virus on a PC over the last 5 years. I keep Norton on both Mac and PC because neither is immune if you download something or your network is compromised. At the end of the day for me it comes down to a few things. I primarily work in Adobe, I experience very little of either OS overall, but I will say I like some of the workflow advantages native to Mac. It took me all of 10 minutes to get most of them going on my PC, but I am knowledgeable in those things, so that is not a barrier for me or those like me in particular.

At the end of the day, hardware is a tool. Mac may be a tool that has less of learning curve, and we pay for the convenience. Users of either platform may be fooling themselves if they think a particular platform is more secure. It is most often the apps that run on these platforms that invite exploit Flash, Java, Quicktime, etc. It does not matter if there are statistically more exploits on Windows. It only takes one well-crafted exploit to ruin your day on a Mac.

Sadly, many people have antiquated ideas about malware deleting files or showing ads. Malware does not want to be obvious. Platforms mean very little today. That is why their prices have dropped so dramatically. Having a Mac is like having a Harley. I do very, very light coding for our ecommerce as well as layout our large catalogs with InDesign and edit high res images for large scale graphics printing. So mostly I want something that can keep up with running those programs with thousands of images in my catalog files and a lovely glossy screen that presents the files the way the final print will actually look.

Of course my Adobe programs were miniature when I tried to run them upon setup, something with the monitors not reading the software correctly? So he got returned promptly. Apparently I should have researched more before purchasing.

Anyone have a favorite equipped PC or a screen that feels similar to the Mac? Nor the price tag, I agree that outfitting a PC correctly will end up around the same cost as the Mac.

I actually have a ton of advice on this exact thing and specific model recommendations over on my YouTube channel. What I will say is when it comes to color accuracy, whether going with a PC or a Mac the right answer is going to be a color calibrator like the ColorMunkie Display or Smile.

As anyone who has ever been an avid gamer will tell you, Asus is solid when it comes to hardware and visuals. The two primary machines I use each and every day are my Asus laptop and my iMac desktop. What I will say is that like Adobe, Microsoft has done a great job with their subscription model software and its compatibility across multiple platforms. If a Macbook Pro feels like overkill, consider getting a solid Asus laptop and you should be fine.

What I would really like to know, especially from a designer that uses both, is whether there is any compatibility issues between Mac and PC, like illustrator files, fonts etc There are fonts only specific to Mac and to PC??

I have always used Windows, and only ever really used a Mac at University. And as others have pointed out here, if you buy a PC similar to a Mac quality wise, you end up paying more for the PC. True, it had all the same features as the Mac version, but unfortunately it crashed 11 times in one hour I counted them!

I crossed my fingers that Apple would be ok, and thankfully it all worked out pretty well with Steve Jobs back at the helm.

I have read all the responses and it is clear that many are still prejudiced against PCs for creative work. I have a question then. I am a high-school art teacher.

We are looking at setting up a new lab at school. Would we be disadvantaging our students if we stuck with PC? Is the prejudice still so ingrained in the industry that they would struggle to get a foot in the door? If they are going to work at an ad agency or media company they will likely be in a Mac environment. However if they work for a commercial company that is not media or tech based they will not be given a Mac or made special because they are a designer, they will be made to work on a Windows PC like everyone else in the company.

So the question becomes what you are positioning them to do. On the other hand most will have a PC at home or access to one and not have access to a Mac. Being educated and comfortable to work on both is ideal. This was an interesting read. I remember at university pretty much everyone had a Macbook, and I had a 2-year old Windows laptop.

Everyone thought I was an idiot, until we compared specs, and it turned out my 2-year old laptop performed better than even the top end newest Macbook at the time.

I totally understand your points about gamers. I use my laptop for gaming, animation, and dealing with HUGE files a lot, so for me, the more power I can get for my money, the better. Plus the ability to actually take the laptop apart and add more RAM, replace the hard drives, etc, is a good bonus.

I liked your point about designers choosing Mac because of tradition. I think we can all agree there was a time when Macs were pretty much the only way to do design work digitally.

The no issues with viruses and malware is false. My path is the opposite as I used just Windows during 18 years before switching to Mac 3 years ago. The edge on performance Mac once had is not relevant anymore, but a number of other factors still make me prefer the Apple platform:.

Much less time consumed with OS updates, adjusts and corrections; No issues with viruses and malware; QuickLook; Native PDF support; An app uninstall does not disrupts the OS; Font editors; Better Touch Tool; PopClip; Quiver; My 3-year old MBPr is still a top device with good resale value. I would disagree with number 1 since most of those updates can be done when you are inactive and Mac OS still has OS updates as well.

As for Number 2 that is a myth for the most part. While, you know, most designers these days work on Macs, the majority of the world does not.

I in fact lived for two years in a country that is dominated […]. Great post. I was looking for an article like this that breaks it down. I seem to have more problems than I need when it comes to using Windows to create and design. What would you suggest purchasing for a first time Mac user?

Before windows, I never needed an IT guy. I knew my mac inside and out and could fix any problems it had. The whole building! Every employee, and not just the designers, were using macs. I am so happy to see a more recent discussion on this from a legitimate graphic designer. About 10 years ago I was shadowing someone whom I was replacing at a company, and said person was telling me about the pros and cons of whom I was working for.

If I ran into less who acted like they were part of some clique, I may actually consider one for giggles. There are actually a lot of creatives who feel that way too and feel they will not be take seriously if they are not in the Apple club.

If you work at an agency or media based company the odds are you will be on Mac. I just recieved an Alienware PC 2 weeks ago. I have an i7 processor and added 2 of the 6g video cards. Is this computer not capable of working smoothly with the Adobe Suite? It is probably not the computer some much as the settings or configuration.

Early days huge difference and no question. In blurred lines in many cases, but mostly when you need it to work and you are your own IT, use the product built for it.

Professional equipment out of the box, with super high reliability and as mentioned above concerning IT issues Apple has it hands down. The pro end video editing tools for Macs are great but the PC still is the standard for broadcast multimedia… the old timers stick with what they know and PC for broadcast used to be a must, but today it is not an issue most of the time.

By the time you upgrade the PC with the higher quality parts you spend roughly the same money, but on the plus side you will learn all about rebuilding, tweaking and generally becoming a part time PC tech.

There are legit reasons for both, so just know your profession. If you can afford it buy both. Know your tools, know what you need in your field… You will be made to care what you choose!

Adobe — Corel is probably a better certainly more affordable graphics package, but Adobe captured the field. The extra money is well worth it. Hi, thank you so much for your post! I have been a trainee in different IT departments and have literally watched MAC vs PC debates, with both sides convinced that they were right.

I have been pressured directly and indirectly to get MAC but your post helped to clear up a lot of misconceptions. I aspire to become a freelance graphic designer but I am hesitant about using MAC simply because I have no idea how to, and it is not in my budget to purchase one any time soon. What would you recommend to a beginner graphic designer on a budget Software, MAC or PC and what type, etc keeping in mind there is a bias in the industry?

This has stemmed from the Stone Age i. It was also the platfo… and thus, for its first two years of infancy, was only available on Apple Macintosh […]. There are many new malware and ransom-ware that were recently released for Mac OS X, sadly many users are unaware of it because they are too fooled with the marketing campaign myths that told them that Mac OS X had no virus at all. And those who think that using a Windows PC are too damn poor to afford a Computer from Apple are really wrong.

Also most people i know with Mac computers tend to use Parallels to virtualize Windows because many of the software they need is only for Windows. I took a job that, starting tomorrow, will require me to use a PC laptop running Windows 7 and early versions of most software, including QuarkXPress 8-point-something, to produce a large newspaper on a very tense deadline. I have been a Mac user since and I am dreading this! What does that tell you? Great article!

I have always viewed Macs as the go-to for design because of its usability and its history in the world of computing, and your article enhanced my vision. I myself am currently a PC user, but I learned the basics of typography on a Macintosh when I was younger, so I essentially understand the premise of both platforms.

Although I myself am not currently working in interior design, I am a technology student, and I know that I will need to be capable of cross-using platforms at my will. Luckily, I do have the background of extensive use on both platforms. PC: which is better for design? Due […]. Controls and restrictions that the agency applies to all PCs makes use of Adobe software as painful as having a tooth extracted. I had hoped that the Creative Cloud Federal agency program would improve installation and use problems.

I was wrong. Luckily, the agency approves my requests for purchasing Macs as stand-alone work stations not connected to their network. On the Mac Pro wine-bottle-carafe, I have the speed and flexibility to do my work. I will write requests for approval to purchase Mac, and endure the long bureaucratic approval process, until I retire. Very good information you have shared. Specially about photoshop. A a photoshop design i do not have read this before. Many designers find themselves turned down for jobs if … […].

Price for buck.. For that extra comfort and build quality MAC. Typesetting is definitely better on a Mac. How do you get an en dash on a Mac? How the hell do you do it on a PC? Is it that easy to access special characters, or do you have to use GREP or search and replace? I would be interested to hear from someone who is doing print typesetting on the other side of the fence, though: What features give Windows a comparative advantage over macOS for typesetting?

Multumita acestei strategii, Apple este considerat in continuare liderul pentru acest segment, inregistrand vanzari exclusiv pentru acest motiv. Blake, may I ask how do you handle fonts between PC and Mac? In the past that was a real nightmare. Thank you. OpenType is the current standard font format; it is far superior to PostScript Type 1, because OpenType has access to the vastly larger Unicode character set and advanced typographic features.

Adobe had converted their entire font library to OpenType by the end of , and stopped selling PostScript fonts in a dozen years ago. If this is new information to you, you may want to use Google and Wikipedia to educate yourself about what has been happening in the world of digital typography in the last twenty years.

I have used Windows in all its versions incarnate since almost the dawn of time DOS to 3. Never had a desire to touch a Mac during all this time. Most of the work I did was development and Microsoft just had better tools in general. Code development in the Unix environment in general is relegated to the console and sucks.

Another reason I was turned off to Macs is that it was so stinking closed. For the first time now, I had to do some work on a Macbook, and because I already am familiar with Unix-based environments, it was very easy to pick up and learn.

Any hiring manager or anyone for that matter who prejudices one system over another is clearly ignorant and projecting their own fears and doubts onto someone else. Software development is very different from graphic design.

You mention the time of DOS and Windows 3. I used parallel for mac until I was noticing a lot of issues with lagging. After really learning the Mac inside out and then being on the support team, I soon fell in love with the Mac.

I find software for both that I love. Blender 3D is a great 3D package for free, by the way. One of the most important things for PC users to know is that you have to get the right graphics card for what you are doing. VERY big difference between an excellent gaming card and an excellent graphics designing card and yet another which is optimized for doing 3D work.

Yes, you can find a great card that can handle all 3, but depending on what is more important, I would find the card that is optimized for your what you do the most.

I have had the privilege to use and support a great number of different software for viruses. Many of the coders who write the viruses have access to online resources where they can upload their virus to see if it will be detected by any of the known antivirus software and if detected, it tells them what to modify in order to keep it from being detected. The parts that are on the hidden sectors check the hardrive and if parts are missing, calls out to its parents as soon as it sees an internet connection.

People used to think that if you stayed away from bad websites that you would be safe. Not so. When anyone that visited that normal business website, they were immediately infected. Apple does charge more for their products. They hire top notch employees. Windows keeps their programmers separated.

Not many people see the whole programming of Windows. Viruses need to see a vulnerability in the programming, thus, there are more problems with Windows. Sorry for the novel. We live in the time of Twitter and this or that chat where messages are kept short and sweet. You will in fact be judged by whether or not you use or own a Mac as a Graphic Designer.

No, its silence. I can not work with Windows. Windows is annoying, there is no silence. This is a practical reason. I have never worked on a pc in 25 years except for about 2 days several years ago, and requested a mac. I found the use of different keys in another spot on the keyboard frustrating to no end.

Especially after 25 years of mac shortcut commands. A near impossible change after so many years. Any suggestions? This is a huge reason for my not accepting this new position. Not a massive mac snob, just grown to love Finder tbh with regard to filing etc. As a graphic person, I must say my heart and soul is MAC. Lots of little things that make me want to throw the whole PC out the Window a log a call saying the PC has crashed literally and then go out and buy my own apple.

New mac are simply no longer computers for designers. Punch cards and all that. Over the intervening years I have used just about every personal computer there ever was.

I have used many MS Windows PCs and currently use an iMac for my video work — and I totally agree that it is all about the designer, and is like the Nikon v Canon debate. In theory. And there lies the problem. Here is the basic problem that goes back to the first days of Microsoft and which I and colleagues at the time knew was going to cause trouble: Apple make machines and then you run software on it.

MS make software, and then you get a machine to run it on. If you have a big and knowledgeable IT dept, or you are technical person, you may manage to get a well built PC machine where everything works together, and then you will have a great machine to rival any Mac. But bear in mind, as has been noted elsewhere here, it will NOT be cheaper for the same spec. I recently speced a PC machine for a friend who wanted a high end machine for video editing in 4K. As we all knew back in the beginning, PCs would be built down to a price.

Walk into a store and buy a PC, then ask them to upgrade it, and you are likely to get a mis-mash of conflicting hardware problems. My point? Use a PC if you really know about hardware. Even though this article and comment thread is technically ancient in terms of computing, the basic argument is the same. I now use both a Mac and a Windows 10 PC in my graphic design work for a large company — and I still find the Mac to be the most efficient system when it comes to RAM management, bluetooth tracking wireless mouse , and file previewing.

I regularly have to work with InD, PS, Ai, and Bridge open at the same time and Mac has long been able to handle the multitasking without needing as much physical RAM as the PC, as well as allow me to have each application up on a full screen of its own Spaces. Windows has only recently added the multiple desktop feature and it is clunky and not intuitive to switch desktops and they seem to function independently of each other as though the user would not expect to be interacting with them interchangeably.

Bluetooth hardware on windows is also clunky and something I refuse to use for creative work — despite how silly it feels to use a wired mouse and give up all the gesture functionality that Apple has integrated into their OS as well as basic things like scrolling right and left rather than just up and down.

So many of these things come down to both the hardware and the software and the Mac is much more effective for me. Aesthetics and superb product integration make working on anything Apple FUN and easy. As a product designer myself, today working on graphics and photographic projects, I derive absolute pleasure every day from my tools and how well they work together… thats worth so much and yes you pay for high quality and great engineering and design in every product and accessory you buy.

Whether one is more capable than another is less important these days, what makes you feel great and do your best work does. Apple Macs are really well built, the tower Mac was upgraded by a brilliant engineer in California and rivals the speed of the trash can model. I do however eagerly await the next generation MacPro Apple have promised as a fitting upgrade for my brilliant old workhorse. To having fun and working on anything Mac!

Just now saw this article six years later and it would be nice to see an update. Thanks for writing it as it generated a good discussion. That would be the reason for switching. Adobe products are not available on PC, but as a print designer, I wonder about the font and color matching performance of Adobe InDesign on a PC, from computer to press.

Conversation with a printer is next. PCs run almost everything including antiquated apps. They can be even ordered with a DVD slot actually on the machine. The mapping app would be obsolete. The list is long. Still, the old G4 and XP with the antiquated peripherals have a place in the office as they come in handy to read twenty-plus year old files. Again, good article and thanks for writing it.

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