Newsflash: Macs are cheaper than PCs

“The new [Apple] Mac Pro is here,” Andrew Gruen blogs for CNET.

Gruen reports, “At the WWDC keynote, Phil Shiller, Apple’s senior VP of marketing, told us that the ‘standard’ Mac Pro configuration is about $1,000 less than a similarly configured Dell. A Mac Pro with dual 2.6GHz Xeons, 1GB of 667MHz RAM, a 250GB hard drive spinning at 7,200rpm, and an Nvidia GeForce 7300GT video card with 256MB of dedicated video memory is $2,499 on Apple’s site, as promised. A Dell Precision 690 workstation with the same specs except for an Nvidia Quadro NVS 285 video card will run you $3,709. An HP Workstation xw8400 with that same Quadro NVS 285 hits $3,791.”

“So if our elementary-school arithmetic is correct, the Mac Pro is $1,210 less than the Dell and $1,292 less than the HP. With Apple’s free Boot Camp utility that lets you run Windows on a Mac, it’s easy to imagine folks opting for the Mac Pro even if they never plan to use Mac OS X. Obviously, Apple hopes that the price differential will get more power users onto the Mac platform to at least give OS X a spin,” Gruen reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Getting a Mac Pro solely to run Windows on it is akin to getting a Lamborghini and filling its gas tank with equal parts sawdust and water. God help anybody who actually tries to consign a beautiful Mac Pro to such a living death. Not to mention that we will hunt you down.

So, do everyone a favor: forget about the whole stupid idea right now. Go the usual route: go get your Dell or HP, mail in your rebates (you’re such a smart shopper), install your ancient copy of XP, download several hundred critical updates, fire up that AV suite, try to defend against spyware / other assorted malware, patch patches that patch patches, do everything upside-down, backwards and ugly, and continue to wait and wait and wait for Nothing Special, er… Windows Vista.

Related articles:
Smart companies should consider Apple Macs to cut IT costs – June 06, 2006
Analyst: Apple Macs cost less than most people think – May 16, 2006
Confused columnist on Apple’s 17” MacBook Pro: ‘you can get a couple of decent Dells’ for that price – April 26, 2006
Dude, you got a Dell? What are you, stupid? Only Apple Macs run both Mac OS X and Windows! – April 05, 2006
Pfeiffer Consulting: Mac vs Windows: Total Cost of Ownership, Productivity and Return on Investment – March 30, 2006
Apple Macintosh simply does more and costs less than Windows PCs – February 14, 2006
Windows to Mac switchers: recommendations and Total Cost of Ownership analysis – September 29, 2005
Windows users who try Apple’s Mac OS X Tiger might not want to go back – June 07, 2005
Apple Macs are far easier, cost less to manage than Windows boxes – March 02, 2005
Apple Macs now cost less and run faster than Wintel PCs – September 30, 2004


  1. Dell and HP sock it to those who can afford their high end boxes and practically give away their low end boxes to the poor.

    Not that they are modern day Robin Hoods, but for the fact that it increases market share.

    A growing company attracts higher stock prices and investors.

    Now Apple has a hard on for Dell, not in a sexual manner, but for the fact that Apple intends to take Dells place by selling lots of hardware, both Mac OS X AND PC compatible.

    I’m willing to bet this “50% of Apple Store customers are new to Mac” is actually PC users who think Mac’s are just PC’s and buy one to install Windows when they get home.

  2. During Job’s presentation today, I went to Dell to configure a computer just like the Mac Pro. After a while, I finally got the specs and it was more expensive. But, along the way, I ran across many other computers in the $1100-$1800 range that looked quite decent as well. Basically, it was the same computer as the Mac Pro, but had one Core Duo 2 processor at a similar speed, only 4 memory slots, and only room for two hard drives. For me, that seems like a decent computer that will work well and still allow for some upgrades at a reasonable price. Where is this kind of computer in Apple’s lineup? It’s either a Mac Mini for $600-$800, a full tower for $2200+, or get a computer with a built in monitor. It seems like they could easily add an option to allow for only one processor and reduce the cheap end down to $1700 or so. That would make for much more flexibility on the consumer’s part. Just a thought, but I am glad to see that at an equal price, they are coming out ahead, far ahead.

  3. Let them buy it for Windows only if they’re stupid enough, who cares! I’m forced to use Windows only at work, I certainly wish I could do it on an iMac instead of the junk Dull box I have to stare at each and every day! Yes, it would be a waste of a fine machine, but at least it would be nice to look at!

  4. I’m willing to bet this “50% of Apple Store customers are new to Mac” is actually PC users who think Mac’s are just PC’s and buy one to install Windows when they get home.

    I’m sorry, but the average stupid computer user does not install operating systems. We’re talkin about people who cannot comprehend the desktop or what a file location is, and loses control of windows when a pop-up asking for OK or Cancel gets hidden behind another window. It’s frozen! The kind of people who proclaim “I’m computer Illiterate” and are suddenly absolved from helping themselves solve their own problems and claim their neighbor’s firewall has given them a virus (when it’s actually Norton bringing the computer to it’s knees).

  5. Y’all need to hear what I’ve done:

    – Two weeks ago, I gave a user a MacBook Pro to run Windows XP. Why? Because it’s the only portable machine on the market that can drive a 30″ display (in native resolution). Dell and HP lost business that day. A week later, the user asked me to install Final Cut Pro on the Mac partition so she could do edits.

    – Last Friday I ordered a Dell box for a web developer, this morning I cancelled that order because the damn thing isn’t shipping for weeks and I’m able to get a Mac Pro for him sooner and cheaper.

    Me… I’ve been an Apple guy for over 20 years. But anytime I can give someone the best hardware to run what they want (that being Windows) and it can be Apple hardware, I’m gonna do it with no regrets.

    All I know, the users love the hardware…

    Apple has done the right thing in so many ways by moving to Intel.


  6. Great take? Nope. More of the same tired crap that the 12 year olds running MDN usually post. Seriously, the crap they spew really makes it hard to even come to this site. It adds no value whatsovever.

  7. JC:
    I also had to use a Dell at work, but then several of them including mine started to have hardware failures (hard disk drives, bluetooth TWICE !)

    Then I made a gamble: I bought a 15″ MBP, they look grey anyway, and took it to a meeting, there were several guys in the room, my boss didn’t notice. Well days later our MIS guy (who likes and uses both PC and Macs at his home) casually asked my boss if he had seen the very nice MBP I had, that’s when my boss knew about the new Mac and said: “Well if I didn’t notice the difference its alright they are better machines anyway!”

  8. One fact that is not being mentioned is the 256 bit memory access for the Mac Pro. That is 64 bits for each of the 4 cores! Does the competition have that?

    Why did you think Apple had to do that and increase the FSB/RSB?

    Because the Xeons are not that much faster than a PPC Quad.

    see here

    So Apple pulls out all the possible bottlenecks, fudges some things here and there and walla! The Mac Pro is 1.5-2.1x faster than a PPC Quad.

    Now of course if the “optimizations” were done to the PPC Quad I bet it would be just as powerful.

    What is good is Apple dropped the price, knowing once the truth got out that people wouldn’t feel so bad that they really didn’t end up with a more powerful machine after all.

  9. usually smart people build their OWN pc from parts, who needs a warranty, thats for babies!!

    no way a MacPro is cheaper than building the exact thing from parts on your own, and then you can have an awsome case with colored lights and some sweet stickers

    two woodcrests + drives + graphics + ram + a sweet case + power supply + fans + windows to install + some other software that might be as good as ilife anyway = you got yourself a sweet “mac” for CHEAP and your not stuck running tiger on it!

    running os x aint worth paying extra, windows is ok to use and anti virus software is free and its not that hard most of the time.

    os x is all about looking cool and bragging to your friends, windows is about just getting the job done and being CHEAP.

    leopard might be sweet, but not as sweet as vista, vista has some see-thru parts that will make you say WOW!

    any pc that costs more than a mac pro aint worth it, just build your own like a real men!!

  10. hey, MacGrouch, the Pro may “only” be 1.5 to 2.1 x the speed of a G5 quad… but it’s also… wait for it… cheaper ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

    When the new LOW end is faster than the old HIGH end, you haven’t got much to complain about.

    Yeah, the G5 was great too–no question. But IBM screwed it. Core 2 is also great.

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