I am and have been an Apple user for over twenty years. There have been a good list of Macs through my hands over the years. Aside from the ones at my various offices, which have run the gamut of pre-power Mac machines all the way to the latest Intel based machines, I have personally owned a rather comprehensive pick of the machines since the 1990’s. All names and numbers I quote below are entirely arbitrary the further back the models go since really, techie as I maybe these days, I’m also bad at numbers and probably years of thinking about these things have left my memory rather addled and unreliable so please don’t be offended or quote me back at me derisively to tell me that “such and such a model never existed” or “in those days there were no RAM chips in x-megabytes” or “the LC motherboard could only see up to 68Kb of RAM” or what have you. Just accept it and let go.
My first Mac was an LCIII Performa with some, at the time impressive enhancements. So far as I remember it had 250Mb hard disc (if I’m not mistaken) and 4Mb of RAM, running OS 7 !!! Which was truly massive in those days. Aside from that it was a 256 colour 15″ monitor which seemed so sharp and amazing at the time. I mean we ran things like Quark Xpress and Photoshop 2 on it which seemed really fast and good.
Later the studio I worked with bought in the first PowerMac, I think it was called something like Quadra 950 or some such, too long ago now to remember if that is the right name. Soon after that when I started working as art director in an ad agency the first G3’s, the 266 came in and we were so impressed at the speed and comfort of the smooth operating OS 8 in there, the 400Mb HD seemed infinitely massive. The flat design was also rather impressive.
A little later a friend of mine bought the latest object of desire the blue & white G3 tower which introduced the much more capable architecture and design/material of what was to become the design template for the next few generation of desktop Macs.
In 2000 I finally bought my first PowerMac. It was the Tangerine iMac G3 400MHz running on OS 9.2.2 the final and probably best OS pre-X, it had a 40Gb HD in it and two 256Mb RAM chips. The 15″ built in monitor seemed a leap forward. After that there was no stopping. Next machine to come into the house was the G4 Graphite desktop, and that’s when I went to town. The design of the case meant I could just open it up and add components to it. RAM, hard disc, secondary hard disc, fans, new DVD drive, PCI cards to get all kinds of things.
This one soon became my wife’s machine, the iMac was relegated to the dark, dank den of my son and, in 2002 I bought the G4 QuickSilver 933MHz, with a Gig of RAM, and soon started enhancing that. All my Macs went to Mac OS X, I believe version 10.1 Puma.
Impressively smooth and better GUI structure than ever. Soon to 10.2 Jaguar followed by 10.3 Panther. With the QuickSilver I also bought that most beautiful of monitors the 17″ Apple CRT with the clear plastic bubble case and the gracefully curving stand in the same clear plastic, and the sharpest monitor I’d ever seen.
My QuickSilver was stuffed full of goodies, first with the advent of USB2 in came two 4 port PCI USB2 cards, then a new graphics card the ATI Radeon 9200, soon replaced by the 9800, 2Gb RAM, new LG 24x DVD writer, a replacement CPU of 1.53GHz, a new Dell super sharp 20″ monitor, Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger, and god knows what other enhancements. All of this necessitating the addition of an array of fans to keep the two 250Gb internal HD’s and CPU and ATI cards cool enough in the hellish summer heat of Athens. In this way I kept my G4 running right up to Mac OS 10.5 Leopard, running a huge gamut of games and applications for close to ten solid years.
My wife meanwhile had a real yen to move from desktop to laptop, so we sold her Graphite and got her the PowerBook G4 1GHz Titanium.
Later on, once the QuickSilver became unusable, and gave up the ghost I was forced to buy a new machine, so the next step was the iMac 3.06GHz 27″ that appeared on the market in late 2009. Running Mac OS X 10.6.1 Snow Leopard, on the most beautiful monitor I have ever seen, with 6Gb of RAM and a smooth, fast Intel Core 2 Duo CPU.
Next came the new machine for my wife. The lovely aluminium Mac Mini 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, HDMI with 2Gb RAM. Meanwhile we were given yet another PowerBook G4 Titanium 667 MHz (I think) to use since my wife’s monitor on her PowerBook snapped at the hinge and cut the monitor cables. This machine became a desktop when needed with a Samsung 21″ flat monitor and is still occasionally in service, especially when we have guests who want to have their own internet access without having to push in on our personal machines.
Phew! So here we are in 2011, out of money, but well supplied with a great tech department. As the years went on and due to the lack of good Mac technicians in Greece I learnt an awful lot about maintenance and repair of Mac machines. My crowning glory being taking an iBook USB to pieces and repairing and replacing all the parts that were damaged and making it work like new again.
Now that I’ve written all this I can’t remember why I started. There was a clear statement I wanted to make but I think I may have got lost in the maze of tech history somewhere along the line… Oh well.
(Vishy Moghan July 30 2011)