Mac Information

Apple Macintosh, iPod, iPad and iPhone news and advice in Dublin, Ireland


Our Gear- What Mac Information Use…

In case people are interested, here is the gear we have chosen to use in our office. We spend much of our time recommending hardware and software to clients, and so we thought you may be interested in our choices.


iMac 27”
This is two years old at this stage but is still our main Mac. We love the 27” screen and would never go back to the 21” version. We will probably upgrade at the next Apple iMac release.

MacBook Air 11”
We have just ordered a new customised 11” MacBook Air, with a 2.0Ghz i7 chip, 256GB drive and 8GB of RAM. It should be with us this week and we will report back on what we think of this new laptop.

MacBook Pro 15”
This has been our main portable for over 3 years now, and has served us well. However we have not used the DVD drive in a long time, and we find this model to be heavy, certainly compared to a MacBook Air. In recent months the MacBook Pro has become a bit sluggish, and so after the latest WWDC laptop models were released, we decide to make the switch.

Printers and Scanners
We have a HP 2605 laser printer which has worked flawlessly for the last 5 years. Overall, great value for printing letters and other documents. We also own a HP 1022, which was nobbled by HP after the release of Snow Leopard, and the drivers were not updated. A real shame as this was a great, cheaper black and white work-horse.
We rarely print photos of other graphics, so a photo printer is not a main requirement. However we do have an Epson SX515, which is a multifunctional printer and scanner. In the last 6 months we have only used it for scanning. The wireless scanning feature is very useful.

Other bits
Harman Kardon SoundSticks speakers for our iMac, Vodafone office landline broadband (we do not recommend any broadband provider as they are equally awful!), Time Capsule 2TB, lots of Airport Express units to cover the building, Apple TV 2, iPad 2 and iPhone 4S.


Here are the apps we currently use every day: Mail, Safari, iCal, Address Book, 1Password, Pages, iTunes, Rapidweaver, iPhoto, iChat, Twitter.
Here are other apps we like, but use occasionally: Acorn, FileMaker Pro, Dragon Dictate, Parallels, Bookpedia, iBook Author, GrandPerspective

After ten years in business, we feel we have good value for money from our equipment and although some items such as the printers need updating, the items have served us well and we have had very good service from all Macs over the years..

Check out the Apple Sale this Friday

If you have any plans to buy Christmas gifts from Apple this year, make sure you take a look at the Apple online store for Ireland or the UK this Friday. Traditionally in the US, there is a Black Friday sale after the Thanksgiving festival, and this is an opportunity to pick up a Mac or iPod at a special discount.

Apple are not known for their sale prices, but this is the one exception in the year, when the special shopping event is adopted by many US retailers. However to be fair to all customers, Apple offer the similar discounts to all of its international online and retail stores. The following teaser has been placed on the Apple online store for Ireland:

Click here for details.

Be sure to check out the site on Friday to see what offers are available.

Securing a Jailbroken iPhone

In the last few weeks, there have been a number of iPhone “worms” which can effect jailbroken devices. Now to be clear, this does not effect people with an official O2/Orange iPhone. This problem is only relevant to those who have hacked their iPhone, normally to use their phones on other networks.

For example, any iPhone with an application called Cydia or Icy installed has been jailbroken, and this can open your iPhone up to hackers. This is because access to your iPhone may be set to use a standard password, and one which is widely known and being exploited by the hackers.

However iPhone Central have provided a clear and easy way to change the “root” password for your device, and we would strongly recommend that any users with a jailbroken phone follow these steps..

Special Report: AppleCare in Ireland

In the past we have reported on AppleCare in Ireland, and our concerns over the availability of the service options to all Apple owners. We covered this in 2006, and 2007, and have been following the policy for customers in the Republic on an ongoing basis, for ourselves and for our clients.
AppleCare in Ireland


Apple Ireland meets PC World

In recent months, Apple has launched a number of "store-within-store" experiments in PC World outlets in Dublin. This involves Apple agreeing to take over a section of a PC World store, and turning it into a mini-Apple store, with an Apple employed staff member.

Apple Store in Ireland's PC World


Vodafone to sell iPhone in Ireland and the UK

The news that Vodafone UK and Ireland will begin to sell the iPhone in the new year must come as good news to many people. Orange UK is also planning to join the party, and this will hopefully inject a good element of competition into the market.
iPhone at Vodafone Ireland and the UK
We have had a number of clients who have been reluctant to switch to get their hands on an iPhone, and in our own case, the O2 network reception is very poor at our office. So the idea of staying with Vodafone and finally being able to upgrade to an iPhone is good news.

Lack of Apple stores in Ireland

People may have noticed the decline in good Mac outlets in Dublin in recent months. The closure of some Spectra Photo stores which once stocked Apple products (Dundrum and Grafton Street for example) is the biggest blow to the availability of Mac goods in Dublin. O2 have also left this market in recent times, and O2 PR confirmed to us that no O2 stores currently supply Mac equipment in Ireland..

Apple revamps iPod lineup

Apple have launched their new line-up of iPods, ready for the Christmas buying sseason. The biggest changes effect the iPod nano and iPod touch ranges, both of which have been revised with new storage space and new hardware features..

Back to School or University- what you need to know...

With the education season about to start up again, here are a few tips on purchasing a Mac as a student or teacher.

Firstly, anyone connected to education should purchase through Apple's Education Store (Ireland or UK). This is not open to the general public, but is instead a way for students and teachers to buy Apple products at a discounted price.

Apple Education Ireland and UK.

New MacBooks Pros and laptop realignment

Apple set out a realignment of its laptop range at the WWDC conference this week. The MacBook now only has one model in its range, the last of the white plastic MacBooks. Now all of the aluminium MacBook models are MacBook Pros This makes sense as it gives a clear difference between the MacBook and MacBook Pro ranges.

MacBook Pro.

PriceWatch: Amazon vs Apple for new Macs

As we reported yesterday, Amazon are offering good prices on some new Macs. With the reintroduction of shipments to Ireland it gives another option to Irish buyers.

Amazon vs Apple prices for Ireland.

Amazon returns to delivering to last

Amazon ship to Ireland

Amazon have started to ship electronic goods to Ireland again after an absence of about 3 years. Amazon had stopped shipments to Ireland when the WEEE recycling fee was introduced, but have now returned to selling goods with new shipping rates..

Apple announce new iPod shuffle

Apple launched a new iPod shuffle today, with two colours available. The shuffle comes with 4GB of storage for 1000 songs. Not only is this shuffle smaller than ever (1.8" x 0.3"), but all controls are now on the earbuds instead of on the face of the shuffle. The only button on the top is an on/off switch- where you can set it to play, shuffle or turn it off.


Apple revamp desktop lineup

New Mac Pros, Mac minis and iMacs

Apple today announced revisions to its entire desktop range, with speed bumps and new chips for its Macs. The Mac Pro, Apple's professional desktop range, gets its first speed bump in over a year, with a new chip, the Nehalem version of Intel's Xeon processors.
New Mac Pros available.

Nothing to display: the absence of Apple screens

20” display vanishes

Yesterday Apple dropped the 20” Cinema display from its line up on the online store. This reduces the choice of screens to two, the new 24” display which was introduced to work with the MacBook and MacBook Pros, and the traditional 30” HD display, which works with a Mac Pro desktop. This reduces the choice for the consumer to one screen for a Mac model- the 24” for new Apple laptops and the 30” for new desktops.