Furthest Right

Why I don’t buy Apple

mac_crashMost posts on this forum are not what I’d consider opinion pieces; they’re descriptions of knowledge about what will happen in certain circumstances, not prescriptions as to what should happen.

However, in this post, I’m going to describe why I detest Apple Computer, Inc. and will not buy any of their products, least of all a Macintosh computer. Ever.

So it looks like my Macbook Pro hates me. My monitor won’t display anything even though the computer is on. I can even log in and turn the volume on and off. I can hear my email sound and everything…but the monitor just doesn’t work.

{ pause for about 24 hours }

So I went in and he went through all the simple resets and tests that I had already gone through and he told me it was the logic board. I asked him to check if it was the NVIDIA defect and he did. Wasn’t that. Either I pay 1200 for him to fix it in store or I pay 300 to send it away. Lame but I guess I have to send it away.


This guy bought what’s probably a $1500 laptop and is now getting told that he can’t get it fixed here for a halfway decent price; he has to send it off, where the cost is that it’ll take a month to return. And why has the machine blown out?

The motherboard has failed.

macbombThis seems to happen to Apple machines quite a bit. You won’t find much mention of this in the spammy internet, but starting around the time of the Macintosh II, Apple began taking shortcuts with its motherboards. It mounted some directly on the plastic of the case, and with others, used daughterboards in odd configurations, or used sub-standard power supplies.

The result is that Apple computers have been blowing motherboards since 1987.

The company has no incentive to change this because they’ve got their audience on the hook. Apple’s marketing is like a microcosm of modern society: they convince you to buy the product for social reasons, surround you with people who chant blank-eyed about how great it is, and then hook you… if you want to be cool like us, you need to keep buying Apple stuff.

Even back in the 1980s, the Apple fanbase was notoriously dishonest about how much their machines failed, or even how they stacked up poorly compared to other machines. Apple users were even banned on several Houston BBSs because they couldn’t stop telling everyone else how inferior their machines were.

What causes this? First, the ego hook: Apple is the hip company (remember those “1984” ads?). Second, the price hook: you just paid a lot more for this thing. It better be good! But if it’s not, what are you going to do… lower your social status by admitting you didn’t buy the luxury brand, Apple?

So Mac users buy their machines, take them home, and when the thing blows up, the repair price is usually the same… about 75% of the cost of a new one. What would you do in that case? Of course, you buy the new one, and start the depreciation curve over.

Or if you’re like this poor gent, you sent it off for the $300 repair, and see it again a month later. Back in the 80s, they used to repair machines with refurbed motherboards, which meant they were often back, and then got sent away to be seen a month later. After several months of no computer, that $1200 starts to look cheap.

The MacBook Pro 13″ has a 6bit display. That means it cannot really display millions of color. Yes, on Apple’s website it claims it can “support millions of colors,” but what they don’t tell you is that it does so through a process called “dithering.” Any designer knows what that means. Anyone else: it means the screen will display colors closely in a pattern in order to give you the perception of a blended color.

A few years ago, a few individuals started a class-action lawsuit against Apple for advertising millions of colors with their 6bit displays. Unfortunately, they needed a “class” for a class-action lawsuit, and not enough people cared/noticed. The matter was settled out of court.

You already know I’m a designer, so you know how important color is to me. A 8bit screen such as my 30″ Apple Cinema Display is able to achieve 16.7 million colors. A 6bit MacBook Pro screen? 262,144 thousand colors. That’s roughly 60 times less colors. That means for all of those colors it can’t display, it blends with nearby pixels. This is just embarrassing and unacceptable.

Louie Mantia

They’re able to do this because of the difference between appearance and reality. If they’re able to forge a fake appearance that appears to complement you, and raise your social status, then you’ll like a crack addict do anything to keep it up. That means shouting down others who don’t agree.

Since there are enough of you to cause problems for anyone trying to launch a product, career, or even just have friends, people learn to be quiet. And so the illusion spreads. Just like in our modern time, when we have a decentralized totalitarian state, where sacred dogmas are chanted at each other and those who disagree are seen as the modern untouchables.

It’s a mental control structure that’s hard to shake, isn’t it?

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