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Which platform makes the most sense?


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#1
The Doomed Mapper

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Greetings All!

Hope I posted in the right forum (it might belong in software, but its a business question so...).

I am looking for some advice on what OS users of the Adobe Creative Suite work in. Specifically, do you find the files a client provides for a job have a signifigant impact on the platform that you work in (i.e PC versus Mac), at least as this product is concerned? I have an extremely powerful PC system which will tear through CS5, but my Mac system is quite dated and will most likely only be able to handle CS4. As such, it might be best to get the suite on the PC and pick up an older version of Illy for the Mac...

I only ask because in my professional experiences there can be significant difficulties concerning fonts when you switch between platform in Illustrator and Open Type fonts aren't in use (i.e. switching platforms without the correct fonts installed "breaks" the links to the fonts in a given document). This can be time consuming and inefficient to remedy.

Any advice for a fledging freelancer who want to keep his options open?

Most Sincerely,
The Doomed Mapper

#2
Hans van der Maarel

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I'm using both Mac and Windows and I've never really come across any problems. Font issues might be the only ones, but you'll have the option to replace those if they're missing (and it's not necessarily solved by using the same platform as your client).

So if you have a very powerful PC system, I'd suggest you go ahead and use that with CS5.
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#3
David Medeiros

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I use CS4 at work and at home, work is on a PC and home is on a iMac. Both systems are about the same age and computing power (3 or so years old)... the Mac wins on speed and reliability hands down. I am frequently bringing files home to work on that seems to crash or stall the PC. I realize this is probably a hardware issue as much as anything but for my money nothing beats the Mac OS for ease of use. I also much prefer the font rendering on my Mac but that's just a usability issue, nothing that shows up in final product.

Form a client perspective, I find that a lot of the creative mapping gigs I have use Mac while the GIS stuff is all PC. I don't have any major issues with crossover though. Overall you will probably find more clients running Illy on a Mac than PC.

On fonts, just make sure you are using what the client specs or that they have a copy of what you choose. If you run into trouble the fastest solution is to convert type to outline before exporting for the client to use.

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#4
SouthernCross

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I have used both SnowLeapord and Windows for cartography and professional wedding photography DAM workflow for a while now. The short answer to your question is no. My question to you though, is why are you switching between operating systems (that is really all you are doing). What graphic files and font types require it?! It just seems you are causing yourself a headache you don't need.

As for David's commets, I would have agreed with the stability of use of a Mac. However, with the advent of Windows 7 that edge has completely disappeared in my opinion. Crispness of fonts and readibility is due to the graphic card you have installed as well as the type of screen you have, not the fact that it is a Mac. Apple makes terrific screens and can be hooked up to a PC. With a good graphics card, you can't tell the difference. I use two LaCie 24 inch colour corrected monitors and they are better than the apple screens... but also more expensive :(.

Either operating system can do everything the other can and just as efficiently if you are knowledgeable. What it really comes down to is personal style and the hardware installed on your machine.
W.P.
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#5
The Doomed Mapper

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Wow, guys thanks for the response. These are exactly in lines with what my expectations are, but I wanted to get a feel from some of the more experienced individuals before pulling the trigger a CS5

@ Hans:
I'm liking the avatar! Font issues are exactly what I'm expecting here (I've had some of those already with some of my work during my day job).

@David:
Your conclusions about prospective clients are also congruent to my own: GIS on PC and Illy on a Mac. I was aware of the "text to outline" suggestion but really do appreciate the reminder (the archivist in me hates that solution... =D - I always like having a way to go backwards, just in case...)

@Southern Cross:
Originally, I might have wanted to switch between platforms as I did not own a Mac at home; It would have given me some increased flexibility and allowed me to bring some of my .eps files home with me (with opentype fonts). This work was originally done on a powerful two monitor map, and I was working late due to my perfectionism/busy schedule. Just last month I got an old powerpc type mac (which can handle Illy 4...), so that might solve some of my problems in the short term.

Maybe someday I'll get a more powerful Mac, but let's see how the freelancer experience turns out before the heavy initial investment... ;)

The honest truth as for why I'm going the PC route? As an alleged gamer who enjoys building and tweaking PCs more than playing games, graphic cards and monitors are not going to be an issue. However, I like both platforms so personal preference is not really that important.

But seriously, this is extremely helpful... this is sorta a large investment for me and I would have hated to drop the capital and end up with a system that I wouldn't be able to use. Its also reassuring to know that my "read" of the field is accurate thus far.

*tips the hat*

#6
David Medeiros

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@David:
Your conclusions about prospective clients are also congruent to my own: GIS on PC and Illy on a Mac. I was aware of the "text to outline" suggestion but really do appreciate the reminder (the archivist in me hates that solution... =D - I always like having a way to go backwards, just in case...)


Same here, which is why I only ever convert on drafts or finals, never the master file.

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#7
The Doomed Mapper

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Same here, which is why I only ever convert on drafts or finals, never the master file.


Absolutely! Reading over my previous post, I realized the tone might have sounded a bit flip. Hope that didn't come across... was instead trying to tease myself for my ruthlessly obsessive backup procedures when working with any type of file (I LOATH having to do work over as a result of poor planning).

#8
The Doomed Mapper

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Same here, which is why I only ever convert on drafts or finals, never the master file.


Absolutely! Reading over my previous post, I realized the tone might have sounded a bit flip. Hope that didn't come across... was instead trying to tease myself for my ruthlessly obsessive backup procedures when working with any type of file (I LOATH having to do work over as a result of poor planning).

#9
ajay

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