Mac or Windows for College Studies Guide

Unless you have been using Linux for your studies and work, you might have heard enough about the eternal battle between those that prefer using Mac and those who swear by Window’s unique qualities. The truth is, there is no better or worse here. It depends on what kind of results you would like to receive, the battery life, the list of specific software, and your technical background. For example, if you would like to enroll in a typical Sound Engineering course where heaps of professional software comes along, the use of MacOS is clear. However, if you are a Nursing student with basic requirements, it is recommended to save some funds and opt for a cheaper college PC with Windows already installed. In short, it is all a matter of what one prefers and the list of things that each OS offers. 

Since students these days may even choose Chromebooks as an option where they do not have Windows per se, it still keeps a person limited in terms of software that will not run under these specific circumstances. Do not forget that while Windows definitely has the largest number of suitable software, some specific advantages of Macs cannot be ignored because their benefits reveal themselves in the long run. Without further ado, let us break down the advantages and compare the specifics that will make sense to most college students these days. 

MAC or PC Major Differences Breakdown 

The Element Studied

PC / Windows 



Possible compatibility issues, yet more choice options. 


Still, the possibility to use different components makes it possible to build a powerful Windows laptop, which is not possible with MACs. If you need a super-powerful PC for 3D design or video editing or programming purposes, Windows is the safer option. If you are ready to put some effort into your PC and achieve suitable performance, the choice is clear. 


However, if you want everything to work smoothly (even if not too fast), then MAC is your best friend! As a student, you can get by with MAC for most purposes or turn to Windows without all the bells and whistles! 

Better, more stable performance


It is a common belief that if one compares two hardware sets with completely the same specs, most MACs will show much better performance compared to PCs that run Windows. Still, it must be noted that MAC already has software and hardware compatibility matters under control, which is not always the case for Windows. 


It relates to software that one will run on Windows that may slow down one's work and the hardware since some manufacturers turn to various components, which is not the case with MACs, which follow the same standards. 

Battery Life

Good battery life information, yet Windows is prone to peaks.


While you have solutions like Dell XPS series or Asus's ZenBooks that offer about ten hours of battery life, the true problem here is the peaks in processor's work that are typical for Windows, which may drain battery power to achieve something or to run sudden updates. 

Better battery life. 


Good examples are MacBook Air and the famous MacBook Pro, which covers from 10 to 13 hours of battery life, which remain the highly powerful machines for college students. 


It becomes possible due to hardware components and optimization, which does not let MAC spend too much battery for simple tasks. 

Durability and Construction

The lottery of good or not so good components. 


The results with the PCs and Windows will always vary from manufacturer to manufacturer since you may end up with a powerful PC solution that requires extra cooling, which results in overheating and the other issues that you would not like to face during the exam or late at night when a sudden noise will wake your roommate. 


Macs provide better quality control and manufacturing. 


While you may end up with different results and cooling systems when you go the Windows route, Mac solutions have a much higher build quality, which is an important point for an average college student who will take Mac anywhere from the cafeteria to the usual life on campus. 


The quality components and the unique cooling system will also serve as a good benefit, which makes Mac route a stable winner in this category. 


Both options are good. 


Choose Zenbook from Asus as an example and you will receive a great solution with good battery life and performance. The laptops that run Windows come in all shapes, sizes, and weight categories, which is why it only takes some searching. 


It is not right to say that all the PCs are heavy, yet Dell XPS is about 1.2 pounds lighter than the MacBook Pro. 

Macs are not heavy per se. 


The majority of Mac options are not heavy due to their construction. It wins over most PCs, especially if you choose MacBook Air. It is about 3lbs, which is quite good and your back will always thank you. 


Portability is an important matter that should not be ignored if you move around a lot. 


Compatibility Issues

You cannot run MacOS applications easily on a Windows machine. 


Of course, there are simulations or special environment options, yet it is not that easy and will always ruin your Windows machine. You would not wish to break it down in the middle of an important exam or while doing simple programming homework, right? 


It shows that MacOS offers far more compatibility IF you use the BootCamp option. 


Let us not forget that Windows also has its internal compatibility issues and problems with the drivers, which are mostly absent with Macs since you only have a single manufacturer to deal with! 

The famous controversy. 


It is a common belief that if a college student runs Windows, there will never be any software compatibility challenges. The only difference would be when your course requires the use of Apple's Logic or any other specific software that runs on macOS like for mobile development or data science purposes. 


The Mac does have compatibility issues if one runs some unknown software without a proper bridging system. The solution here is BootCamp, which is often ignored and leads people to believe the famous compatibility controversy. 


So, is it a Mac? Yes, it is! Just because Mac will let you do anything you would do by using Linux. 


Always depends on pre-installed software, hardware components, and Windows updates. 


Windows is great when it works, yet when it suddenly decides to reboot because of some update, it easily turns into a nightmare. 


Since most PCs these days come with pre-installed software, it can cause trouble when it breaks down or functions in a wrong way. If you go the PC route, always double-check what is installed, consult a techy friend, and get rid of all the extras that you do not need. 


In addition to that, the hardware components may also come into conflict, which is a frequent issue with some manufacturers or custom-built PCs. 

Macs rarely malfunction. 


If something breaks down, it will always be a serious issue, which is quite rare for Macs. PCs, on the other hand, are more prone to such problems and it may take hours or days to get things fixed. 


In terms of software, OSX is much faster and stable, which won't cause any problems if you run only the usual applications typical for college students. 


The Windows laptop constantly has numerous processes running in the background, which can cause frequent freezing. Since Macs only have the native software and no bloatware of any kind unlike Windows computers, the chances are high that you won't encounter any issues. 


Moreover, Macs also offer great sync options, so you can use your iPhone or iPad device for seamless integration and stay in control of what you share. 

The Pricing Matters

Cheaper, yet be ready to do some research. 


If the budget is tight, seek reliable options, read the reviews, ask friends who are tech-savvy. There are good Dell solutions as a tip! 

Macs win the long run. 


Even though PC running Windows can be cheaper in most cases unless we talk about some multimedia station, Macs win in the long run because there are far fewer viruses that can infect your machine. 


The reliability factor and the build quality cannot be ignored as well. The best part, however, is the great cooling system and the stable OS X. 


If you ever run in trouble with your Macbook while at college, you must contact Apple and they will fix it for you. Choosing the PC route, you would have to call Intel, Microsoft, Dell, or whatever other company to get some information. It does cost more, yet it is definitely worth it! 

What Do I Buy Now? 

The choice is yours. There is no absolute right or wrong here - it only depends on your preference and the course in question. If you feel right about working with Windows and prefer PCs, it is your right. Just do not ditch the Mac option away because it offers far more possibilities and safety that may help you as a college student who is there to learn and not only play video games and chat! 

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