Persuasive argument needed to acquire new computer

Hi, long time listener, occasional caller.

Six months into my new job I have reached a point where I am completely fed up with my own (personal) laptop.

The story is this; I work in a field where I am working for a company where I am getting my UI, IxD chops down. In this company I am the only other person that uses a PC outside of the two engineers/authors/programmers. I originally picked up a pc (a Dell M90 precision workstation, specifically designed for 3d modeling, weighs a f**k-ton!) for school and for solid works and auto-CAD. My office is completely Apple and I should add that an all Apple/Mac office is a beautiful thing; it is a flawless, fast and elegant system in the way that information is shared and distributed.

As a user of a semi powerful lappy workstation I feel embarrassed when I hop on one of the many full blown stations that feature(and I am serious when i say this ) 32 or more gigs of ram, internal raid and the sickest vid cards known to working professionals.

So the story is that when I first started there was a lot of talk of a laptop coming my way. I was quite fine with not seeing a MacBook come my way for a very long time. However (and I am embarrassed to say this) now that I am ramping up and “Stepping up my game” I am getting more into the creative suite (which is something is used almost 99% of the time) and FinalCut, graffles(flowcharts, etc) I am finding that I have to rely on hacked/stolen versions of programs because I am too poor (even though rent and student loans are covered) to legally purchase the proper programs and I am also too poor to up and get a Mac.

After a few months of having the idea of a new machine being waved in front of my face and hearing about how “unfortunate” it is that I am not a Mac person I still have not seen a useful machine come my way (also keep in mind that an older and completely unusable machine came my way until we discovered that it was, well…older and unusable, and also…keep in mind that the overall master plan of said employer is to eventually obtain more workstations in the near future)

So I ask this after a long winded and (hopefully) coherent post…How should I go about asking for the proper tool for the job? I can continue to work on a sad machine, but with time I am seeing that I am being looked to for actual professional work with the machine I am on. I am happy for the opportunity but I am not happy when every conversation revolving around any crative work involves the words “hold on…hold on…just give it a second…im shutting this thing down so that…ok ah ha…oh *&% it’s so slow! ok there it is…no…let me get back to you in thirty seconds!”

Should I put up and wait for thing to happen or should I be the squeaky wheel, make a lot of noise and hope things work out?

Help me not be the dumb pc guy in a mac office! Thanks.

Since you obviously know a lot about computers, what about performing some calculations to show your employer how much time (MONEY) they’ll save by upgrading.

I had to do this when trying to get new computers for our design department back when I was doing exhibits. Those renderings can take a long time when doing photometric lighting and raytrace. Anyhow, I was able to calculate how much quicker those renderings would be with the new hardware and proved that within a year we could save money by being more productive. Have to spin it so that the bean counters see it as a huge positive, rather than just an expense.

I feel your pain. Here I am trying to run Pro E, Alias, Illustrator, Photoshop, Showcase and Outlook on a Pentium 4 (yes, it’s as bad as it sounds).

I would say show them how much time you’re losing because of the machine and how cheap it is to upgrade to a very powerful workstation.

By the way, Mac’s can run Windows now - so if you’re in an all apple office why don’t you just install a copy of boot camp with XP for your CAD apps?

PC’s cost less right? There is part of your argument.

Heh, actually yes/no.

Its the other way around, I’m a Pc and I want a mac.
And some PC’s like the one that I have now was about the same price as a Mac.

Thanks for the replies, please keep the ideas coming in!

Some of the leasing deals look pretty sweet when I get the catalogs in the mail… new powerful PC for $55 or so per month seems like a great deal. I think you can write the expense off in taxes too

I guess the pc is never yours though, but they still seem to get outdated fairly fast

You’ve been hired (not a temporary arrangement) and you are still using your personal computer / stolen software? This is a big no no.

Is the older, unusable computer really just not as good as your dell, so you are by CHOICE using your dell? Or is it really old and unusable? A G4 mac is still technically usable, but would be majorly limited in what you can do with it. It’s hard to convince people who don’t struggle with the hardware daily how much it effects your performance. It’s easy for them to put off a purchase if you are providing your own hardware and software for free. I would instead, switch to this obsolete machine, and then see how long it takes them to invest in you a little.

If I got a new job and was given an old computer (6+ years) I may by CHOICE use my personal laptop until there was budget to get things up to date, but I never would commit to this situation long term. 6 months is too long.

Good luck.

I’m the only PC in my office too. Macs totally annoy me. I need more than one stupid mouse button to run Pro/E. Sounds like these guys need to pony up. Using hacked software on your own machine is ultra-lame. Ask your boss how long he wants to be a cheap-ass hack. That should go over well. :smiling_imp:

Seriously though, are you generating money for the company? If the answer is yes they should buy you whatever computer you want.

Guess I didn’t quite understand your first question. You’re using your OWN computer with hacked software for work???

Yikes, that’s not good. Even though I just do freelance work on the side, I still try to have legit copies of stuff. Granted, a personal license of Pro/E or Solidworks is a bit high, but everything can be deducted from your taxes if you set up an LLC.

just because I’m a smart ass, (though agree with the rest of your comment) my mac’s mouse has 4! four! buttons. This is the one that is made by apple, that comes with every mac. :wink:

ya gotta remember the biz part of it. its actually to the company’s advantage to buy a piece of equipment, its a tax right off. if you need this, then uncle sam helps you out. i hate macs, because i use cad and cam (no programs for mac). i bought the dell t3400 with a gnarly nvidia, 1200 bucks, no complaints. as for the software, don’t even use bootleg for business - $100,000 fine isnt cool when the software costs $5,000. and the software gets ritten off too!

my advice, if you as a designer (employee) are worth the investment of what you need, i’d buy it for you. if you suck, then i’d tell you to deal with it :slight_smile: a good way to see if your respected or not… lol… thats why i went freelance.


A P4 ?
Oh man, you have gotta to make a case for getting a better 'puter than that.
I am amazed you can even run Alias on that clunker.

Unfortunatey when your company loses $3.6 billion it’s kind of hard to say “hey I need a new computer if you want those sweet raytraced renderings!” :cry:

It’s slow, but it does what it needs to.

Ya, just ask for it, you don’t want any problems for the company or the clients in the future, so, using your personal unreliable machine with pirated software is not going to cut it. They need to provide adequate work environment/tools.


so there is no update.

im in a tough place, i’m still the odd man out, i still cant ****ing subscribe to ical events (thunderbird does, it come’on!), I still have to do stupid ass work-arounds because of compatibility issues, i thought about it some more i think the idea is to let my work prove that i need a mac and not a dell. i’ve been working like hell to get my photoshop, aftereffects and graffle skills up. Eventually I will present a demo that will show my new skills. It’s sort-of ****ed because I am already leaned upon to use what I have (reviewing psd’s and ae docs) but so far they have been good to me and we are ramping up in the new year and getting a lot of business in the face of this economic downturn.(helps to be small and boutique when the big dogs are falling).

Another option is this; everybody in the office that cares knows my situation and one mentioned that she has an in with apple to get a very nice discount, one idea that I have had is to take the discount and see if it can be applied to one of the student packages (as a grad I still have access to the money $aving deals offered to my alma mater) on top of that I would try to see if my employer would try to pay for half or a part of it. Tough work-around I know, but it just might work.

Are you a full time salaried employee, or a contractor?

As a full-time, they need to give you the equipment to do your job, period. Using pirated software is a fire-able offense. If you can’t convince them that it’s worth the price, then they’re not really interested in the benefits of you using it. So why bother?

How did you get into this situation to begin with?

You’re doing too much out of your way for your employer. If they don’t value you enough to make sure you have the right equipment you might want to consider how secure you are there, they may just not to spend money if they already know that seat will be the first to be vacant (if you get my drift).
They need to make sure you’re working correctly. If you need to be manipulative, maybe you can find some way of accidentally catching a crippling virus. :wink:


Computer is on the way.

To CG, I am technically a contractor but pretty much 90% of the office is and THEY have machines. It really came down to the wire where we are overstuffed with work and the only way to get stuff done is to send it to me and guess what I would need to get stuff done? A flipping mac. So long story short, it came out that yes, the item is on its way.