The secret is out–it doesn’t take a specialized computer for you to be a blogger.  But there are some considerations to keep in mind when choosing what computer to run your business from, and I think the decision can markedly change how productive you are while working on your site.

I started my first successful website from a $200 refurbished Asus netbook with a 9″ screen and miniature keyboard.  It was a disaster of a computer but I earned hundreds of thousands of dollars from that machine.  You can do the same if you are starting your online business, but I have evolved over the years to more expensive computers that have allowed me to do things that I otherwise could not have done.

While even basic computers will do fine for writing blog posts, you will find that you need more horsepower for editing HD video tutorials.

Choosing Windows or Mac for Internet Marketers

Yes, I use Mac computers.  No, I’m not an Apple fanboy.  In fact, I used Windows computers for years and I feel that the Windows ecosystem has some significant advantages over the Mac (especially the file structure and Windows Explorer).  However, I have chosen the Mac as the computer for my business for three main reasons: (1) Security, (2) Quality hardware, and (3) Integration.

Security – Mac computers are unreasonably expensive, but nothing will kill your productivity faster than when your computer gets a virus the week of a product launch.  Mac computers are far more secure than Windows computers, and I find that many applications are more stable on the Mac because there are fewer devices to test software on.  The reason the Mac is more secure is not necessarily because it has better security than Windows, but it is because there are far more Windows computers in the world and Windows computers are already so easy to create viruses for that hackers tend not to waste their time on the smaller Mac user base.

Quality Hardware – There are definitely good machines made with the Windows operating system, but no manufacturer of Windows computers can even touch the quality of a Mac.  The trackpad on a Macbook Pro is FAR superior than what I’ve found on any Windows laptop.  The Apple Magic Mouse is the best mouse ever made.  The screens on Apple computers are sharp and detailed for staring at every day.  The build quality of the machines can take a lot of abuse for traveling.

Integration – When I work from home, I often find myself needing files that are on my work computer at the office.  Apple has excellent built-in features for accessing computers remotely without additional software.  When I take a picture illustrating a concept for a blog post, it is easy to transfer over the files from my iPhone.  All my cables are the same for my computers.  I can wirelessly transfer files from the laptop to the iMac easily, etc.  Integration of products really helps me to be more productive and keeps me from wasting time looking for third party solutions and software to make my business work.

I certainly don’t think you should switch to the Mac to be an internet marketer, but I do think that if you happen to be shopping for a new computer that the Mac is a good choice for running your business–that’s all.

Which One?

Choosing a Mac is ridiculously simple because there are not nearly so many models available as there are in the Windows ecosystem.  Basically, there are two desktops to consider and two laptops to consider.  My personal choice is the iMac as a desktop and the Macbook Pro as a laptop.  Both of these computers do excellent with editing 1080p video, and the integration between the two is really nice.

Desktops

Mac Mini – The Mac Mini is a good choice if you want to take advantage of the Mac ecosystem and you already have a keyboard, mouse, and monitor that you can use (the Mac mini does not come with the monitor, mouse, or keyboard).  If you use your computer for editing videos to put on your site or on Youtube, a Mac mini will easily edit 720p video but struggles somewhat with 1080p video.  There are three Mac Minis available.  At home I use the basic version and it performs perfectly well, but if you can spend a little more you may find it worth your while.

iMac – The 27″ iMac is where I spend the majority of my time while working on my sites.  In fact, it’s what I’m using right now.  I upgraded it with as much ram, processor, and hard drive as possible and it chews through 1080p video without any hesitation.  it is a very expensive computer, but I’ll admit that I love it.

Laptops

Mac Air – This impossibly thin computer is a great choice for blogging on the go.  If you have a few minutes during your lunch break at the j.o.b or a few minutes to blog between college classes or if you frequently travel, the Macbook Air is an excellent choice.  I have edited 1080p video on the Mac Air and it’s not a fun experience, but it is fantastic at 720p.

Macbook Pro –  I carry this computer with me each morning when I teach a youth Bible study class and want to show video clips, to the office to work from the cozy end chair when I’m sick of sitting at my desk, and to home at night for Internet browsing or playing video games with my boys.  This goes with me everywhere.  Even the stock configuration of this computer can edit 1080p video quite well, and the beautiful trackpad and light design make it a breeze to use.

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Comments

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  2. Jim,

    I completely agree with your recommendation for Mac. I’ve been in IT Security for 18 years and OSX is a very solid OS. Although you can configure Windows to be equally secure as a Mac it isn’t as user friendly to lock down, in my opinion.

    One thing I would add to your assessment above is the workflow of a Mac. I couldn’t imagine giving up some of the Mac specific features like gestures, spaces and corners. While it may only save a few seconds in locating a window or application, I feel like I’m trying to run in sand when I use a PC and I have to constantly min/max windows to find what I’m looking for. And no, Alt-Tab doesn’t compare. 😉

    I also use a handy application called QuickSilver that is a bit of a spotlight replacement. It catalogs your hard-drive and you can assign a hotkey to quickly pull up a dialog box, type in the first few words and then launch or send commands to an application for execution.

    Hope this tid-bit is useful.

    Kind regards,

    Chuck

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