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[OT] What software Mac?
Posted: 01 July 2012 08:53 AM   [ Ignore ]
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I’m a PC user. Always have. For a while around 2000/2001 I was using a Mac LCII on the side, but that’s about it.
Yet yesterday I finally broke down and bought me a MacBook Pro (no, not a Retina one, one with 17” screen they had on sale).

So now I’m sitting here in front of it and wondering what software to put on it. So help, macfiends? What is good and useful?

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Posted: 01 July 2012 12:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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What are your general needs? I’m an Adobe user myself, but then I simply don’t do business/office apps.


Since you’re here, I’m assuming that you’ll be running the Mac version of whatever PC 3D programs are your general go-to ones. There are a lot of smaller utilities which don’t have a Mac version which is annoying, but rather a lot of people seen to get good results with partitioning the hard drive, installing windows in the partition and running both systems.


If you do need the basic business/office stuff, but it isn’t a primary need, Apple’s own iWorks is likely to be good value. It’s a suite containing a word processor/page layout program (Pages), a presentation program (Keynote), and a spreadsheet (Numbers) which are built to work together and share files pretty seamlessly. Like most Apple products, it comes with a lot of various modifiable template documents to springboard off from. It’s $79 for single user and $99 for the family pack (not sure how many different Macs are covered by the family pack, but I’d expect more than 2). I am under the impression that all of these recognize and can import Word, Excel and PowerPoint docvuments and export to those programs.


Otherwise so far as major software companies go, whatever is out there for Wintel is probably available for Mac. Adobe rules the roost for Graphics, so I’m less aware of what else is available, but I daresay most Adobe programs have competition. If you need to deal with raster images (which you do, that’s renders all right) and don’t want to go to the expense of Photoshop, Photoshop Elements has 80% of the capability and can run most 3rd-party plug-ins. I think its main limitation is that it’s RGB only—but my understanding may be several versions out of date.


If you are enrolled in a qualifying educational institution, or are a teacher, you probably already know about educational software dealers, but if not, just about any public Junior College qualifies, and it’s worth it to sign up for a class (even an exercise class) to take advantage of the deal. I can’t speak for all companies, but with Adobe, the educational versions are the full versions, and upgrade to the full versions, but only cost about a third of the general commercial price. They want people to go on using their software after they finish school.


There are other companies with other deals. Some of them not as solid. For example; the educational license for Modo is about $150, but it’s only good for a year. It’s probably renewable, but only if you’re still in school.


I can’t speak for much else, but it’s worth checking.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 01:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I will keep on using my Windows machines along with the Mac and I’m not in any education.

My main tools on it for the foreseeable future will be Cinema4D and Hexagon. It is possible that I will put DS and Carrara on it later on but that’s not really a priority right now.
Some office tools will probably be added soon.
I don’t have the budget for Adobe software (C4D wipes it), so I want some more affordable image/texture editing tools and compositing software.

Otherwise, all those little tools and utilities that make life easier really.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 01:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I don’t know for sure whether Hexagon will run on a current Mac. It’s almost certainly one of the programs with a Mac version which was developed for the PowerPC chip series. OS X.7 (Lion) kills those dead, but it may have been given enough of a revision more recently to still run. I’m not familiar with Cinema4D, but I shouldn’t think there would be any problem there. DS definitely runs on an Intel Mac, I’m pretty sure Carrara does as well. Probably Bryce as well. Both Cararra and Bryce see to have new versions more recently released than Hexagon.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 01:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Hexagon runs at current OSX 10.7.

Bryce won’t run, the latest release of OSX it will run with is 10.6.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 01:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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A thanks for that. I’m running OS X.6 and will add Bryce to the list of legacy programs which an upgrade would kill. I don’t actually use it, but I’ve got a couple of commercial products that I occasionally have a use for opening and doing a straight render of to use elsewhere.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 01:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I installed Hex, did a quick test run and it showed no problems yet. So we’ll see how far it will take me.

One thing I can already tell is that I don’t care for the Apple Mouse.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 05:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Personally a PC user primarily and on my old MacMini I run OpenOffice as a viable alternative to Microsoft Office, has equivalents for Word, Excel and Powerpoint. Opens most file formats and does not cost a penny. I found iWorks limited. Have happily bounced docs between the two platforms - but it’s not perfect just adequate. Depending on your needs both Microsoft and Google have cloud/online file access/editing facilities you can use.

Most DAZ software (not all PA’s) are PC/Mac but not all are non-Intel compatible (or Universal build)

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Posted: 01 July 2012 09:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Hello and welcome to the Mac world.

For image manipulation you can’t go wrong with Pixelmator. It can be found in the App store. It does a lot of what PS does but at a fraction of the price and with a very sleek interface.

You might want to share data from your Mac to your PC or others, including iOS devices. Nothing better than Dropbox

An absolute must-have for Mac users is TextExpander, also in the App store. It expands text snippets into any text that you want. It will save you tons of time and you’ll be wondering how you lived without it smile


You can make application launching much faster with Alfred or Launchbar. Both excellent.


This is not exclusive for the Mac but I highly suggest to use 1Password for your password administration. It integrates with Safari, Firefox, and Chorme (my default browser) and it makes handling my 90+ accounts and passwords a breeze. It has versions for iOS with synch between all devices.


If you want an alternative 3D mesh editor I would strongly suggest Blender 2.6, lots of good stuff and it is actually supported by a large community.


Lastly you might want to listen to the MacPowerUsers.com blog, they have a lot of hints about apps and techniques to optimize your life with your new Mac.

Once again congratulations, Macs are great machines and Mac OS is an absolute delight to use.

Cheers.

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Posted: 01 July 2012 10:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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On a related note, how to people that use MACs install their zip content? I’ve read that 10.7 should be able to merge folders now, but despite all the youtube videos, tutorials and posts on various forums I can’t seem to get it to work on my external drive. In know I can do it via terminal, but considering the amount of zips I’m trying to reinstall, that is simply not a workable solution, nor is manual placing of the zips content.


I’ve read that there are apps that can handle merging folders as well, any suggestions on which ones are worth the cost?

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Posted: 02 July 2012 04:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Loaar - 01 July 2012 10:01 PM

On a related note, how to people that use MACs install their zip content? I’ve read that 10.7 should be able to merge folders now, but despite all the youtube videos, tutorials and posts on various forums I can’t seem to get it to work on my external drive. In know I can do it via terminal, but considering the amount of zips I’m trying to reinstall, that is simply not a workable solution, nor is manual placing of the zips content.


I’ve read that there are apps that can handle merging folders as well, any suggestions on which ones are worth the cost?

There are some utilities for merging runtimes on Rendo; also I use moveAddict to merge my content directories. I would also check daily mupromo.com and maczot.com for specials on mac software… they are usually discounting software and utilities for 50% off or more.

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Posted: 02 July 2012 01:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Greetings,
I use BetterZip (I got it through a bundle purchase), and I select the directories below the Content/ directory, and just drag them onto my My Library directory, and it places them correctly.


I use my Macs pretty heavily, but I’m mostly a developer so most of my tools are ones you probably don’t need.  I use The Hit List as my task list and to do list tool, and it’s actually changed my life.  It’s completely driveable by keyboard, and yet has a gorgeous interface, and all the features I need for it.  I’m a very happy user, as you can tell, and it’s only available on the Mac (and iOS, which really needs the OS X version to sync with, to work best).


I also use Sparrow as my email client; it’s especially good if your primary email address is a gmail or Google Apps address, since it preserves all the keyboard commands of gmail.  Dropbox is awesome (also available for Windows) to sync my renders from home to the ‘cloud’, where I can check on them from my iPhone during the day (I actually also use it to sync my entire Runtime between my Windows box and Mac, and use the Windows box as a Reality render slave).  I use Caffeine to prevent my Mac from dimming the screen or going to sleep while I’m pausing (either in uffish thought, or to talk to someone about what’s on the screen).


I also suggest paying attention to Mac App Deals which aggregates deals, discounts, and bundles across the net for Mac software, and you can find things like 1Password (highly recommended!) and Color Schemer Studio on sale.


There are probably a dozen other apps I use on a regular basis for stuff like tracking bills, journaling, searching, etc., but it depends on whether you’re looking to use your Mac as your primary device.  (And another dozen tools that I use for software development purposes, which you probably don’t care about.)


I hope that helps, some!


— Morgan

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Posted: 02 July 2012 02:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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My must have Graphics tools on Mac OS X are:
GraphicConverter (http://www.lemkesoft.com/)
OmniGraffle (http://www.omnigroup.com/products/omnigraffle/)

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Posted: 02 July 2012 04:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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As well as some of the others mentioned, I use ForkLift from http://www.binarynights.com/ - It’s got built in FTP, and batch renaming of files, and side-by-side windowing. And Merge of folders, but this isn’t so important now.

Alfred in the app store is fab for quick launching of programs.

Base from the app store is good for browsing sqlite files (I don’t remember what line of work you are in, except that it’s techish) - http://menial.co.uk/software/base/ (although it’s expensive for what it is, but I haven’t found anything that comes close).

One program I missed from Windows was OneNote - however Growly Notes is pretty good and free - http://growlybird.com/GrowlyBird/Notes.html

AppCleaner for deleting programs - http://www.freemacsoft.net/appcleaner/ (macs don’t clean up properly either).

There are various Mac bundles that come out from time to time for $30-50, with heaps of good software in. There was just one with Parallels and other stuff for $49 at http://www.mupromo.com/ They .have cheap software daily, and so does http://www.maczot.com/.

Bundles might have nice programs included like Brush Pilot for your Adobe Photoshop Brushes - http://www.brushpilotapp.com/ which, is expensive on its own but worth having included with something else.

And I’ve just found this site which hopefully will send me an email when a bundle comes up: http://allmacbundles.com/

For screen casting I have found ScreenFlow much better than Camtasia - I also use it for simple video editing. http://www.telestream.net/screen-flow/

Free SuperDuper! for cloning disks, like when I went from Snow Leopard to Lion, I was able to clone and boot onto Snow Leopard. (In theory anyway - I haven’t had time to test it thoroughly) - http://www.shirt-pocket.com/SuperDuper/

http://appshopper.com/ tells you all about stuff cheap in the App Store, and will give you pricing history.

 

 

 

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Posted: 03 July 2012 04:18 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Must have programs:

BBEdit: a text editor par excellence. When I was forced to do some serious text editing one Windows for an employer, I went looking for a replacement for BBEdit, and nothing came close.

Cheetah 3D: I own Hexagon and Cararra as well, but this is what I model in. Currently on sale.

Final Vinyl: for converting LPs to digital. Works without an iMic. Some functions don’t (yet) work in Lion.

Audacity: for editing audio.

iGetter: Download manager that works with Safari.

Quicksilver: Launcher utliity.

One of VMWare Fusion, Parallels Desktop, or VirtualBox: Virtualisation software to allow running Windows relatively seamlessly within Mac OS X—no need to reboot.

Numbers, Pages, and Keynote: Office software done right—enough functionality to be usable, without being bloated and baroque.

That would be my starter list, anyway.

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Posted: 03 July 2012 01:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Ascania - 01 July 2012 08:53 AM

I’m a PC user. Always have. For a while around 2000/2001 I was using a Mac LCII on the side, but that’s about it.
Yet yesterday I finally broke down and bought me a MacBook Pro (no, not a Retina one, one with 17” screen they had on sale).


So now I’m sitting here in front of it and wondering what software to put on it. So help, macfiends? What is good and useful?


Apple only makes a 15” retina display to my knowledge. (would love to see a 17” one tho!) Has such a beautiful display)


Welcome to the world of Mac, Ascania!


Check out the App store, there are a lot of great little apps for almost anything imaginable.  Many shareware items around as well. 


I’ve been using Macs since the Apple II (back in the ‘80s) and have been using them since.  (Currently have 2 Mac Pros (towers) and an older G5 tower)  Use D|S 3A and DS4Pro on both MacPros as well as CS3 (2008 MacPro) and CS5.5 (2010 MacPro)  Also run C4D (r13) on the newer MacPro.

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