It has been done!

I though I might as well bring the feedback to the front page since this post is viewed in context with the reply on the previous post:

That’s a really nice system you’ve spec’d out, and I agree – to me, Windows has matured significantly in the past few years, Office gives *the best* experience on Windows, so like you, it may be difficult for me to justify spending more for OS X at upgrade time when I cannot guarantee that I’ll be giving myself the best working environment for my money.

Windows 8.1 is quite usable right now, if anything bothers you the third party stuff can rectify it, though really most of the little things will be addressed by Windows 10.

I keep flip-flopping between a laptop and a desktop but at the end of the day, for a home system, a desktop would serve me best, and when I’m out on the go, I’d might as well pick up an inexpensive “Winbook” that can remote into the mothership and otherwise do the job whilst still being near disposable.

I’ve made the decision then and purchased it online with the estimated time of deliver being on the 6 March 2015 and I’ll look at getting a Lumia 830 but I’ll keep my eye open at the big announcements are at GSMA where the much rumoured HTC and Samsung S6 will be announced so by then I’ll have a look at what is available. That being said though I’m stepping back and wondering whether it makes any sense investing in a flag ship phone when a mid range ‘good enough’ alternative does everything I need – get a cheaper phone and upgrade every 18 months or have a flagship phone then feel the psychological pressure to upgrade even though there is no definitive need to upgrade. Like the iMac the problem with the iPhone is that you either go out and purchase the biggest one knowing you can’t expand or I can purchase a Lumia 830 which has 16GB then when I want more storage I can go out to purchase a sdcard at a later date which means I’m not forced to spend up big upfront.

In terms of replacing my MacBook Pro I’m scoping out the cost of a Surface Pro and hopefully we’ll see a refresh soon but even so the current Surface Pro 3. A great desktop, a great laptop along with a phone that does that job that I need. Things will start to get interesting when Windows 10 is finished and made available.

6 thoughts on “It has been done!

  1. Excellent news! I will look forward to your review once you have the new system.

    On the mobile front, I am thinking along the same lines a lot these days. I had thought to purchase an iPhone 6 when they came out but ended up staying with Android for another round (a 2014 Moto X, which is a decent enough handset).

    I do have to ask myself whether or not I need it, however. When I am on the go most of the time, I only need a basic phone that does voice, text and some light browsing. Phone-based navigation is still quite spotty where I live (rural Canada) and also in the places that I like to vacation (mostly New England in the US – too many mountains). Battery life is more important in the end, during my down time.

    The rest of the time, when I am at work, I am working! So really again, I do not need a high powered phone. At home I naturally use a computer (as I am doing right now) so I question whether it makes sense to put so much money into something I rarely use.

    I have not yet decided whether to switch out the Moto for a lower cost Android or perhaps a Windows phone (the Windows phones tending to have a much longer battery life). We shall see, I too am curious to see what new devices will arrive in just a short while.

    1. Motorola and HTC are two of the Android vendors that have really gone out of their way to do a good job of supporting their customers as well as taking advantage of the Google Play Store to deploy updates for their phones rather than having to go through the whole carrier approval process. That being said, I sold my iPhone 6 and purchased an Lumia 830 – the experience so far has been very good, a premium device at a midrange price with the lack of gapless playback a pet peeve of mine but I’d say that eventually VLC will fill that gap given that IIRC it has its own ‘engine’ which hopefully will mean that it can read the iTunes gapless tag and make it possible. I’ve been getting great battery life so far and I love the wireless charging dock that I can have on my bedside table and just pick it up without having to worry about the maze of wires. Regarding the smart phone itself; I mainly use it for email, text messaging, WhatsApp to chat to a friend in China, surfing the web and going through Reddit so the lack of apps is a non-issue.

      Regarding the replacement for the MacBook Pro – I’m looking at getting a Surface Pro 3, Surface Pro Type Cover and then using the $100 voucher to purchase a copy of Office 365 for my desktop and laptop. I was tempted to purchase an XPS 13″ but in the end I’ve decided to go with Microsoft simply because it doesn’t come with crapware and that it is well supported in terms of future version of Windows. Office 365 will be great for work when I need to type up a roster, I can take it to work because it is a lot more compact and light, have it in a meeting etc.

      I’ll probably end up doing a 2-3 part series where I talk about the transition so it’ll probably be a few weeks before it is eventually uploaded. It will be quite the series once I’ve finished.

      1. Excellent – I will look forward to your series when it is ready.

        On the phone and computer front for me, I will probably pay off my Moto X next month (when I got it, there was really no advantage to going contract-free, but a recent change with my carrier makes it worthwhile, plus then I could move around) and then I will see. I can always strip out the apps that I don’t really use any longer, which would free up some space, and save data while increasing battery life. I’ve also done a lot of testing with the mobile site equivalents of various apps that I use, so if I switch to something else completely and there is no app, I should be okay.

        I am with you on the Surface Pro 3, it is a very nice machine and I have already determined that if I got one, it would work for me. I do not often sit with a laptop directly on my lap, I even have a “lap desk” just for the odd time that I do so – a carryover from previous machines that had poorly located ventilation ports. If I’m on the go, I always find a desk or table, and at home I suspect that I would actually just place it on my desk and connect it to an external panel. The Type Cover combined with the new multi-position hinge would be just fine.

  2. @Brett Legree

    Apologies for the late reply – my desktop finally arrived and it is amazing just how different Windows 8.1 actually is when running on a modern Intel based computer with UEFI when compared running it on Mac (having to deal with driver issues, less than desirable performance and stability – almost seems as though Apple’s support for Windows is more out of reluctantly providing a crunch for people migrating rather than it being a long term solution for an end user). On a good side though I’m able to use my Adobe Creative Suite Master Collection for Windows on my computer once again – it isn’t the latest and greatest with ”cloud goodness” but I’m happy none the less because it gives me access to a decent video compressor. As a replacement for XLD I bought a copy of dBpoweramp which does a pretty good job for $58 and I can install it on up to 5 computers which is great. Oh well, I’ll be uploading a video tonight on how things are going.

    1. No worries at all! We’re all busy in one way or another, with work, family or whatnot, plus you had to get the new machine set up first 🙂 glad to hear that you are enjoying the new desktop.

      I am not surprised by your experience, Windows 8.1 on a modern machine from a reputable OEM is quite good from what I have seen too.

      Off to watch your video!

      1. I’m loving Microsoft Office 2013 – very slick and Outlook works perfectly with Outlook.com so far. I did experiment around with lame for my music encoding however there were some compatibility issues between Lame and the VBR encoding in terms of files not being recognised and incorrect length sizes being detected so instead I’ve just decided to go with the FDK AAC encoder that comes as a separate download for dbpoweramp. I’m definitely looking forward to Windows 10 Mobile and it’ll be interesting to see whether we’ll see a 64bit version of Windows 10 Mobile given that Qualcomm 810 is shipping although I have to admit the HTC One M9 is tempting – Spark NZ on twitter replied saying they’ll be getting it in around April so it might even include some freebies as part of the promotion.

        Regarding the video, I’ll do a follow up one once my laptop arrives – how everything is fitting together.

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