New to Macs and all things Apple.


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Dear All,

Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.

I'm new to mac and Apple products. I currently own a Chromebook and as much as I do love Chromebooks, they just don't offer me what I need anymore.

I also have a Medium size business and my Chromebook could not keep up with my workload

My wife and I have a budget of 200,000 yen ( We live in Japan buy the way and I'm from England Originally )

I have a few questions,

1. I need a computer for creating word documents, excel spreadsheets, maintaining my website, music listening, youtube, Netflix, and some video editing.

2. I have narrowed my choice down to a Mac book air or a Mac book pro 13. Can someone tell me what each system is mainly focused on?

3.My Chromebook had google docs, does mac have something similar or do I need to get Microsoft word?

4. Apple M1 chip with 8-core CPU, 8-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine, 8GB unified memory ( This is within my budget with money leftover ) is 8b enough ram?

or

2.0GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor ( a little over my budget )

Which is better?

5. Can you change the language easily in Mac OS from Japanese to English? ( I don't want to be stuck with Japanese! I heard windows is a nightmare to change languages as you need to order the correct language pack or something )

6. I have the option to choose a keyboard Backlight Magic Keyboard-English (UK), but my wife would like a Japanese Keyboard, if I order a JIS keyboard, will it have Japanese characters and English alphabet characters too? is it a qwerty layout?

7. Should I order Final cut pro when I order the laptop? It's expensive at 38,000 yen...is it suitable for someone who wants to create videos for my website? or is there some free software on the mac book at no extra charge?

Thank you so much for all your help, I'm so sorry for all these questions, but I really have no clue on mac books.

Thank you
 
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Sorry one last thing, does this mac book pro air and pro 13 use butterfly keys? I heard I must avoid butterfly keys.

thank you
 

Cory Cooper

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Hello and welcome.

1. Honestly, any of the current MacBook Air or MacBook Pro models can handle that usage quite easily. Since you are starting fresh, I would recommend the M1 over the older Intel models.
2. The MacBook Air is designed for general home users, students, and those that don't need to do professional-level audio/video work. The MacBook Pro CPU/GPU/RAM/SSD specs are similar, but add a cooling fan, better audio mic/speakers, a slightly larger battery, etc., which aren't needed for the tasks you listed.
3. Macs come with Pages/Numbers/Keynote, which are Apple's version of Word/Excel/PowerPoint. You can also simply install the Google Chrome application, sign in with your Google account, and use Google Docs/Sheets/Slides as you do on your Chromebook.
4. 8 GB of RAM is quite sufficient for most users.
5. Yes, setting/changing the system language is very easy, and can be set during the initial setup and/or using the Language & Region preference pane at any time.
6. You can opt for a Japanese keyboard when ordering - I believe it is still a QWERTY layout and has English and Japanese characters on the key caps. You could check with Apple directly to confirm.
7. The Mac comes with iMovie pre-installed, which is a consumer video making application that is much easier to learn/use versus the professional-level Final Cut Pro. Honestly, most folks would not need the additional features of Final Cut Pro, nor have the time for the additional learning curve. You can always purchase Final Cut Pro later from the App Store for the same price - $299.99 USD.
8. The new M1 Macs have redesigned keys, which are much better than the previous butterfly keys you may have read about.

Hope that helps!

C
 
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I just want to say, thank you so much for your reply, Cory. You were unbiased and gave very helpful information politely.

Originally I was on a forum called bleeping computers I think and the answers I received were awful and rude.

I know nothing about macs, but you have given me a huge amount of confidence now. Thank you very much.

If you don't mind I have a few more questions, some from my wife below

1 - Is pages and numbers as good as word and excel, What I mean is with google docs my wife was always unhappy because she said it lacked many of the features of word, a little barebones. I did not have an issue with google docs, to be honest, but my wife sometimes has to create documents for my customers in Japanese and so she always had issues with missing options ect.
Is page/numbers equal or better than word/excel?

2 - Is pages and numbers file extensions able to be opened/edited by a customer if they are using windows their end?

3 - I decided not to purchase Final cut pro X now as it seems hard to use and imovies should do the trick for making video intros for products. So if I purchase a Mac book air, will that come with imovies, and will it be able to handle imovies without any slowdowns?

4 - I'm not sure if to purchase a mac book pro 13 or mac air ? could someone give me their honest professional feedback on which is better for my needs? The air seems a bit cheaper on the apple website.

5 - Should I wait until October when Apple releases their new macs? or is it a good time to buy a mac now? ( Sorry maybe this question is a little pointless to ask, but I do wonder? ) Some websites are telling people to wait now.

6 - Does Mac come with a music player and music library software to store and organize music? like windows media player? or do I have to purchase it separately?

7 - Can I use google calendar on a mac or does mac have a calendar function?

I think that's it..sorry for all these questions, I'm just a bit nervous to click to buy button, to be honest.

Thank you again Cory for all your help.

best regards,

Jimmy
 
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Ohayōgozaimasu! Sorry for the terse response… Mondays are terribly busy for me and I hope to write more later. I only want to suggest right now that you wait until October for the next iteration of Silicon Macs. The M1 MB Air and MBPro units were Apple’s first foray into Silicon CPUs and are lacking in capacities/capabilities. They may be sufficient for light users, but your list tells me that you need more.

Cheers!
 

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