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Windows vs Mac vs Linux

post #1 of 98
Thread Starter 
I'm currently using windows but I'm thinking of going over to Mac, first I though about going to Linux but I dunno about the media playback there.

I want the OS with best audio and video playback, I'm an hifi&audiophile so gaming does not concern me much so windows is not needed.

I'm also tierd of the viruses from windows, I want something to listen to my music and play my videos without crashing like windows does and without getting a virus everytime I browse and get into a "weird page" by accident when googling up something.

I know there is viruses for other OS:es too but they seem more secure, anyways does mac or linux have better sound for music than windows? In the frontpage there is an article about mac and speakers etc which made me think.
post #2 of 98
For audio, properly set up, any of the three should give you identical results. I find getting to "properly set up" is easiest on the Mac.

For video, you may occasionally run into differences in codec support between the three, but really, VLC and mplayer have served me well, and both are available on all three OSs.
post #3 of 98
it's also the quality of the media players on the different os's..

right now i'm running play off of mac os x and it sounds better than when i was on windows.

ubuntu should be good also..
post #4 of 98
Thread Starter 
The problem is java! **** this damn java ****, I don't even use java and whenever I browse in windows I get trojans from java virtual machine trough firefox.

But in Linux or Mac I need to turn of Java too right? Else I could get viruses there too.

But most java viruses are hardcoded into windows/system32 so does that mean if I get into a virus site with java it creates a map called windows/system32/virus.exe etc if I am on linux or does linux just ignore this?

I think its still good to turn off java "just in case".

I think I'm going for either mac or ubuntu, based on which has the best codecs, I've had some problems with ALSA though playing up the music with distortion.


Does Opera work in Linux/Mac I'm tired of firefox as well.
post #5 of 98
If you can afford the hardware, I'd go Mac....actually, I did. Second choice would be a PC running a Linux OS. Third choice would be anything other than a Windows based system. Heck, grab a used laptop on the cheap and slap Ubuntu/Kubuntu on it. Even that would be light years better than a Windows machine.

Yes, I'm very, VERY anti-microsoft, and I make no bones about it.
post #6 of 98
Thread Starter 
If you only listen to music, browse and watch some movies then there must be better than windows.

I was defending windows before, I've used windows for over 10 years now, I've gotten 40-50 viruses about now all of them from java by searching for something on google and then going to the page by not knowing it has a java virus *woop* goatse images and java popping up automatically allowing the comp to download a virus.

And the antivirus does not anything, it just says a file is infected and puts it on quaranteen just for "marketing purpose" but the files usually reproduce copies of the viruses and are still in your computer.

Not to mention all the bluescreens.

Instead of formating a computer all the time, getting crashes there must be some good OS for media, the thing is I got a PC and I'll need something based for PC since Mac only works in...
post #7 of 98
There are a few add-ons to integrate windows and other file formats into the core of QuickTime. What Mac's use for its media playback. This also allows WMV files to play in browsers.

Perian - The swiss-army knife of QuickTime® components
Flip4Mac - Digital Media Tools for the Mac

As mentioned above, there's VLC (a must) and mplayer.

The default browser Safari is a great one. Very fast, light weight and standards compliant. Originally based on khtml. Memory usage is reasonable. There's Opera for it but I would skip it. It feels kludgy. Give it a try though since it cant' hurt. FireFox 3 is really good too.

I would use Linux myself on my spare PC but it has giving me more trouble than it's worth.

Mac's can do plenty. Outside of gaming, there's plenty of choice and the quality is often better as long as it wasn't a crappy port from Windows.
post #8 of 98
What? So, if Java is a problem, turn it off. I've had Java disabled in the browser for years, and it only becomes annoying when occasionally going to time.gov. *shrug*

If your AV isn't blocking virii, you're either getting too many, or not using a decent one (IE, McAffee, Norton). AVG should be plenty good enough, and blocks them just fine.

If you're getting blue screens, you have serious problems, and are not set up well, and/or going too many shady places on the internet. Regular BSODs take work, these days.

So then:
Did you install your OS? How long has it been running? Are you straight on the 'net, or behind a firewall (a router counts, software "desktop firewall" does not)?

If you have to format the drive and reinstall with any Windows OS as on Windows 2000 or newer more than once every 2 years, there's no way you'll be able to handle Linux.

I don't run Windows now, but your problems read much more like you lack enough paranoia to be safe on the internet with Windows (they are out to get you), and should go behind a router, and on a Mac.

As far as the best A/V OS: there is none.
post #9 of 98
Originally Posted by user123456 View Post
I've had some problems with ALSA though playing up the music with distortion.
Linux audio can be a major pain. In my current setup, I can pick between:
  • audio applications can play sound at the same time, but they all sound horrible; or
  • my music can sound good, but applications don't play well together, and every time Flash plays sound, I have to restart the Web browser before anything else can play again.
ALSA (Linux audio driver system) uses something called dmix to support mixing sounds from multiple applications. It's very similar to kmixer, in that everything has to be at the same samplerate for it to work, and when it resamples, it sounds awful. You can set it to run at 44100Hz, but then you have to resample when watching a DVD, and so movies will sound bad. I just bypass it, and live with the resulting problems.

The Mac has its own mixing system, but:
  1. it's quick and easy to pick the samplerate it uses,
  2. it defaults to 44100Hz anyway (or at least it did for me), and
  3. Leopard's CoreAudio resampler is actually decent, so having to use it isn't the end of the world.
Originally Posted by user123456 View Post
Does Opera work in Linux/Mac I'm tired of firefox as well.
Opera works on both I'm with dvessel though -- if you do go for a Mac, give Safari a shot.
post #10 of 98
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by cerbie View Post
The problem is windows, period.

Thanks LnxPrgr3 for your reply!
post #11 of 98
Originally Posted by user123456 View Post
Not to mention all the bluescreens.
What OS are you using, Windows 95? I've used XP and Vista since their respective releases on a plethora of machines (probably about 50 total) and with the exception of one machine that had a bad stick of RAM, I've never seen a BSOD once.
post #12 of 98
I have been running windows for the past 6 years w/o any anti-virus program and I have never gotten any viruses or spyware/malware on mys system. I use firefox with the following add-ons: adblock plus and noscript. The noscript add-on prevents java, javascript and flash from being executed unless you allow a webpage permission.

As for linux, ubuntu is pretty good in the multi-media department but requires some initial configurations/installation of codecs/add-ons for it to be useful. Additionally, there's a new audio API for linux called PulseAudio that's in development but already ships with current version of ubuntu linux. I think it also comes with Fedora. Anyhow, it's a lot more flexible than Alsa and allows multiple applications to play audio.

My suggestion would be to try Ubuntu or any other linux first since it's FREE. If it doesn't do it for you than buy a mac.
post #13 of 98
user123456, I'm primarily an Ubuntu user. But I think you're dismissing Windows too easily. It is prone to viruses, but only if you take risks imo - stay away from anything seedy or use a VM if you want to take a chance (easier to re-image a VM than your entire desktop).

I personally prefer Ubuntu because it gives me the hardware flexibility of Windows, yet also the freedom to setup my OS as I see fit. Plus, the cost can't be beat. I'm fortunate that all my hardware runs on it, and runs quite well. But, it can be a pain to get it setup, as others have mentioned. Mac can be a breeze to setup and use, but it's expensive and there's not as much hardware flexibility, imo.
post #14 of 98
Originally Posted by Lucas7x View Post
Additionally, there's a new audio API for linux called PulseAudio that's in development but already ships with current version of ubuntu linux. I think it also comes with Fedora. Anyhow, it's a lot more flexible than Alsa and allows multiple applications to play audio.
Straight ALSA will mix. Is PulseAudio any better at it? It would be the first audio server I've seen that doesn't completely suck at resampling.

For that matter, how many ways do we need to do sound in Linux, anyway? Look at this mess! ALSA, Jack, ESD, NAS, and aRts can all also mix streams from multiple applications for you. None of them have succeeded at making Linux audio any less of a disaster.

Don't get me wrong -- I use Linux at home daily. I just wish we could standardize on one audio API already, and then work on making it at least do basic things right (like, say, resampling).

Originally Posted by user123456 View Post
lets discuss what UNIX system has best sound instead.
In terms of audio quality, like I said, Mac and Linux should prove equal, once they're set up correctly.
post #15 of 98
I am sure you will be very pleased with Mac OS X.
You know you want it...
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