As I said, I really wanted to like my Mac, and I was very excited to buy it. Under heavy use, however, it doesn't seem to hold up. Garage Band frustrates me to no end, and it's honestly faster, easier, and more reliable to just use Rezound and Audacity in Linux.
It's late, and I'm stuck editing the show in Linux due to the RAM problem with Garage Band. As a result, here is a brief list of my grievances in no partiular order.
- Garage Band CANNOT export to wav or mp3 files: Apple practically forces me to use their non-universal standards and I have to use all manner of hacks to get around this.
- iTunes can't make real mp3 files without hackishly installing LAME into it, and even then it's incredibly slow at encoding.
- The editing interface in Garage Band is awful, counter-intuitive, and tedious.
- Garage Band barely runs with the processing power and RAM I have (standard for the Mac I purchased).
- Garage Band will only record to the limit of my RAM, and then STOP with no warning or alarm, thereby severely limiting the amount of audio with which I can work.
- Garage Band in general will fail to do a great many things with no explanation, error message, or warning of any kind. It's trial and error to see what the limits are.
- Apple's documentation is abysmal, and I say that as a man who's read the official NTP documentation.
- Sound randomly stops working in flash.
- The Dock randomly stops magnifying, requiring a reboot to fix
- Everything in Garage Band is super contextual, but it's difficult to tell what context I'm in at a given time and there is no textual feedback.
I really can't justifty using a Mac as my primary computer, let alone as our podcast box. Unless all of you out there can shed some light on things I'm missing, this new Mac Mini will either be relegated to livingroom media player duty or returned to the Apple store for a refund.
I -could- install Audacity and all of my open source software on it, but that really defeats the purpose of buying a Mac: I could use a PC that's twice as fast for less money if all I ran is OSS. I bought a Mac for the polish and the streamlining, to avoid all of these niggling little issues. It both surprises and saddens me to have had such trouble.