PC TO MAC : Why I'm Switching

I’m one of those people who finds a good thing and sticks with it. When I figured out that my mobile life was empty without the S Pen, I turned to the Samsung Note series and never looked back. When I first touched a computer it was Windows, and until now I’ve had no reason whatsoever to question my decision to stick with it all these years later – the key words being until now.

Current Set Up

The past couple of weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind for me. I currently own the Lenovo Flex 3 14 inch model and it has mostly served me quite well. I edit and render my 20 minute videos on it with the hassle that I’ve always thought is part and parcel of working on a laptop as opposed to a desktop, so when a ten minute video took 10 hours to render I wrote it off as “not enough RAM” and moved on. For reference, my specs are as follows:

Lenovo Flex 3 14” Model.

  • Core i7 5500u 2.4GHz

  • Nvidia GeForce 940M

  • 8GB RAM

  • 360 degree flip screen

Now that my “beast” of sorts is almost 2 years old, however, what used to equate to roughly 1 hour for every minute seems to be slowing down more than I can ignore. The same 10 minute video now takes at least 13 hours to render, and has done so for a while. This obviously worries me, as it means that my 20 minute videos can take anywhere between 22-26 hours to render, with the occasional overheating halfway through the process forcing me to have to have to start from scratch multiple times per file. This is the bane of video editing, and is something all of us have to put up with right?

Alternative Options

Wrong. I went on a bit of a research frenzy last night trying to find a worthwhile upgrade for my Lenovo Flex 3. I looked at all the Yoga machines and as beautifully crafted as they are, they just lack the necessary powder under the hood to make me drop another $1000 or so for them. I even looked into the HP side of things, with the HP Spectre x360 boasting an impressive customisation option with the choice of i7-7500U 2.7 GHz, up to 3.5 GHz, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, a 360 degree flip which I’ve come to appreciate as more than just a gimmick as well as a 13 inch screen for maximum portability, and I‘m still not sold on it. A quick google search showed that my current fifth generation i7 5500u outclassed and outranked the HP’s seventh generation i7 7500u by a wide margin, and for my video editing purposes which are highly CPU intensive, the thought of downgrading my CPU specs just for more RAM doesn’t cut it for me.

Unfortunately, most of the consumer level laptops on the market boast either the i7 7500u or the even worse performing i7 6700HQ. I had just about come to terms with the fact that, unless I was willing to settle for a behemoth of a workstation such as the Lenovo P50/70, whose specs go as high as having 64GB RAM in them, I would just have to wait until the next Yoga was released and hope it had what I was looking for. Keep in mind that my priorities are all round power (minimum 16GB, i7 HQ/K), minimum 512GB SSD storage and a portable sleek design. The 360 degree “yoga” turning was optional but definitely preferred as it has been such a wonderful addition on my Lenovo flex.

MAC VS PC for 4K video

In my research I came across a video titled: “4K Video Editing on an Ultrabook” and I thought it would have a viable option for me, so I opened the tab and kept browsing for more concrete reviews before I dove any deeper. Then I saw: “4K Video Editing on a 12″ MacBook?” and almost instantly dismissed it because so far, all I’ve ever known Macbooks for is being overpriced and painfully underpowered, so I didn’t expect the result to be anything short of a glitch y mess.

Curiosity won and I clicked on the video, eyes ready to roll at what I thought would be the man’s desperate attempt to justify the inflated Macbook price while demonstrating how badly it failed at editing such a heavy file. Anyone who knows anything about editing knows that 4k video is no joke, and having just barely dealt with it myself I can tell you I would not dare load it into my laptop for fear of it crashing it completely. But Jonathan Morrison was brave enough to test this out on his 1.1GHz core M 8GB RAM Intel HD 5300 laptop – and the results speak for themselves.

Results

He compared his results, step by step to those in the video I mentioned earlier and I can honestly say MAC blew the PC well out of the water. The PC used was the ASUS Zenbook UX303 i7 2.5 GHz, 12GB RAM and Nvidia GT 940M graphics card (sound familiar?). I expected that the results would be nowhere near the same and I was right – only in realty, the Macbook far outperformed the Asus by miles. Importing 4k footage straight into Adobe Premier Pro failed with the Asus, forcing them to trans code the original footage on a desktop then transfer to the laptop and work at a quarter of the resolution. And the Macbook you wonder? It transferred directly onto the laptop and edited at full resolution, no trans coding required. The resulting 2 minute 4k video took 17-20 minutes to export on the Asus laptop, while on the Macbook a 4 minute video took 6 minutes 1 second. Three times as fast, on a laptop with half the specifications of the PC. Don’t believe me? Check out the video yourself.

To be honest, I always said that nothing could convince me to cross over to the Mac side. I thought the Operating System was gimmicky at best, and at worst overly restrictive to the point of frustration. But after seeing these results, and knowing that my rendering headaches really can be in the rear view mirror, I’m completely sold on Switching from PC to MAC, most likely getting a Macbook Pro. Aren’t you?