The Mac turned 25 years old; truly antiquated for a computer. Yet, it’s arguable that the Mac has never been better, never more powerful, never more compatible.
What’s the best Mac ever? Some Apple pundits think it was the Mac SE/30. It’s not. Macworld has a list of the 6 Worst Apple Products Of All Time. They missed a few.
As an original Mac 128k owner (I cut my computing teeth on CP/M systems back in the last century), and owner of more Macs through the years than anyone else I know, I have a unique perspective of the best Macs and the worst Apple products.
The list was impressive and ranged from the favorite, a Mac SE/30, to the ridiculous, a candy-coated clamshell iBook. Puhleeeze. Others on the list included those I’ve owned.
The PowerBook 100, the sunflower iMac, a Pismo PowerBook G3, and so on. Through the many years of Mac ownership I’ve purchased nearly three dozen Macs. Without a doubt, the best Mac ever was the original 17-inch Mac PowerBook.
That luggable, lovable machine ran non-stop for over 66 months before I finally sold it. I added extra RAM and had to swap out a dead hard drive, but otherwise, the Mac ran mostly 24/7 and was rock solid dependable.
It started life with OS X Jaguar, then Panther, then Tiger, then Leopard, and all the iLife versions in between and never, save the hard drive that died, gave me a headache.
The much heralded Mac SE/30? I had one; tied to a Radius monitor and early versions of Pagemaker and Photoshop. It was solid, durable, but didn’t have anything over the Mac PowerBook.
What about the Worst Apple Products Of All Time, according to Macworld?
Check out the list as it is mostly right on target, but with a few omissions, especially regarding my Worst Macs Ever. Yes, there’s the horrible Mac TV, the disaster of the Pippin, and even the 20th Anniversary Mac circa 1997 (do the math—it’s 20 years of Apple, not 20 years of Mac).
Of course, the Mac’s original USB hockey puck mouse is included. You either loved it or hated it, but few can deny that it helped keep the third party market for Mac mice going strong.
Hello? What’s missing? The Cube. Beautiful, underpowered, overpriced, unexpandable, a high tech paper weight, much like the MacBook Air, sans the paper weight.
What? No Newton on the list? Both the Cube and the Newton were cool disasters for Apple. Remember the QuickTake Digital Camera? Not many do. How about the Apple One Color Scanner? Bad products, bad.
There’s also room on the list for the Mac IIfx, a high powered monster Mac with a monstrous price ($10,000) which made it a poor seller. Prior to the Mac was the Lisa. Think of it as a candy-coated original iMac without the candy coating and with a $10,000 price tag.
For me, the worst Apple product, and the worst Mac on my list, was the original 128k Mac. It cost about $2,500, came with nothing that worked well, did nothing well, crashed often, required an upgrade to 512k and a year long wait for a $7,000 LaserWriter to make it useful.
But it was oh so cool. What was your favorite Mac? What do you think qualifies as Apple’s worst product ever?