I’ve been documenting my computer setup quite regularly since 2005 and it just so happens I got myself a new setup over the long weekend. I thought it’d be fun to look back at all my setups over the past 13 years.
This is the oldest pic I can find of my desk setup, when I was living in a one bedroom flat in Richmond, about a year after I first moved out of home in August 2005. I can’t remember what spec those computers are, but I bet the cases and PSUs are MSY “Shaw” specials. That Dell 17″ (or is it 19″?) CRT was awesome at the time. Check out the blank CD spindles, heh.
For laughs, here’s my wife (then girlfriend’s) computer at the time. A G3 iMac Dalmation – when I assume Jony Ive did acid for the first time.
In November 2005, I posted this. Those two computers are gone and I found a new keyboard or something. There’s also a G3 PowerMac not doing much on the floor there. I think it was busted. Still with the CD spindles. That 14″ Compaq CRT, I hauled on the tram all the way from the Camberwell swapmeet. Fucking pain in the arse. If you look closely, there’s even a 10 pack of 3.5″ floppies behind a spindle of CDs!
May 2006, I scored a 17″ Intel iMac and had a 30GB iPod Video (the best iPod ever). The MacBook was a loaner from work so I could write about it on AppleTalk. Note the Nokia 8210 phone near the iMac, heh.
Not long after that in November, I picked up an Xbox 360 and a 19″ monitor. I had a different phone, I think its a Nokia 6280. So many CD spindles. A Nintendo DS Lite too. Some beers because I was 22 and I thought beer was cool.
Around April 2008, I moved house, back to St. Albans, so I had a room just for computers and shit for the first time. This is what it looked like. Dunno why I have so many mini computers there and a bunch of magazines.
Not long after that I had a PS3 and an XBox 360! A 24″ 1920×1200 Benq monitor that would still be great today, hooked up to a MacBook Pro. Oh, there’s a PSP up there as well. Next to an empty bowl, there’s a first generation iPhone in its dock (Apple gave you a dock!). I think the only thing in tat picture I still own are the headphones right on the edge of the desk.
Slight update a few months later, where I got a stand for the MacBook Pro, moved the PS3 and XBox to the living room and was given a B&W Zeppelin to review that I rather liked. Check out the classic Linksys WRT54G doing noting at all. Some external HDDs on the floor as well, haha. Who remembers Cover Flow being a big deal?
September 2008, better quality photo where you can see the iPhone (which I think by then would be the 3G?)
I had a second setup in the MacTalk podcasting cave. I’d spend a fair bit of time there, writing for MacTalk, trying to convince people to give me money for ads on the site, podcasting and editing stuff. Here it is on the night of WWDC 2009 (June 2009), back in the days Apple didn’t live stream the thing and we had to follow text blogs like animals.
Here it is a little quieter, when I’m just on my own editing stuff. 20″ Intel iMac was actually a loaner from CompNow if I recall correctly, who let me use it as long as I kept an ad up on the site. The MacBook Pro on the left was my main machine. I miss that fucking joint. I shared it with some electricians in South Melbourne who thought we were the biggest nerds ever. Nobody was podcasting back in 2009. Now every dickhead had a podcast.
November 2009 and I purchased a house (the house that MacTalk bought!) just a block away from where I was living in St. Albans previously. The first setup I had there that I took photos of was a Mac Mini (old school design) hooked up to two 24″ Benq monitors on an arm, in portrait view. Looking a little more modern there, with the same keyboard as now and a Magic Mouse. I think that’s an iPhone 3GS there too. There’s an AirPort Extreme up on the shelf a Kingrex amp and so much mess.
I had two desks side by side at that point, so here’s the other end of the desk. Just a dumping ground for whatever tech shit flows my way. The MacBook Pro has been abandoned there for some reason.
I’m unsure when the next set of photos were taken – I assume some period between 2009 and 2012.
This is a 17″ MacBook Pro and an iMac. I really don’t remember owning that iMac. The 17″ MacBook Pro was a beast that I used mostly to swing between the MacTalk office and home, as I didn’t have an external monitor at the time. There’s a round iPhone dock behind the MacBook, so I assume this was near the tail end of the iPhone 3GS, maybe late 2009, early 2010.
Here’s my Mac Pro and 27″ Dell LCD. Awesome machine that Mac Pro, I never should have sold it!
These are two monitors connected to I don’t know what. I think it’s around 2011-2012 here, as there’s keys for my sister’s Hyundai Getz on the table, which we purchased in mid-2011. Google Reader still existed then too (RIP).
Here’s some pics of the 2nd MacTalk office, in Flemington. This one was taken in March 2010 (it had EXIF off Flickr)
I had a second partitioned off area at the back that I’d use as an office, where as the podcast recording happened in the middle partition where I could enclose it in soft stuff to prevent reflections. Looks like I had a 13″ MacBook Pro there. Must have been cold as I put the space heater right on the desk to blow over my hands! Notice the iPod Hifi, another thing I regret selling.
Now we’re back on the photos with dates! This is from November 2012, with a lot going on, haha. There’s a HP Opteron server I snagged for like $50 off Gumtree. My main machine at the time, I think, was that Mac mini (still the best Mac Mini as you can change the RAM & SSD. There’s an Acer laptop there too, which I was using as my laptop as I didn’t have enough cash to get a Mac laptop. I think that black Antec case was a gaming rig I wanted to set up. Dunno how long that lasted.
March 2013 comes along. The Acer laptop is still there, as is the gaming rig. Using a MacBook Pro again as my main machine, as you can see on the shelf to the right. I had two 802.11ac routers there, which were brand spanking new at the time – that I used to create a wireless bridge between my garage and the house, where I kept that 16 core Opteron HP server beat of a thing, hah.
April 2013, hooked up some neat Jamo speakers. Using the box my Manfotto video tripod head come in as a monitor stand. Still got the MacBook Pro as I can see the Thunderbolt-Ethernet adaptor just on the right.
August 2013 saw the creation of my Litecoin rig in some bloke’s shed in Bacchus Marsh. So much fun. I’ve ranted about my Litecoin rig in so many places, I won’t rehash it here (heh, hash). Just marvel at it’s fire risk glory.
In November 2013 I hooked up two monitors to the MacBook Pro – watching the cricket. Yep. Don’t have either of those monitors now.
March 2014 saw me experiment with using a 9″ Windows tab as a laptop replacement. You can’t. It sucks.
In May 2014 I picked up three 20″ monitors off Grays super cheap. I think it was like $150 for all three. They were 1600×1200 too, so quite nice! All three hooked up to the MBP I assume – one in each TB port and one in the HDMI port. Still have those speakers, that 5-port Anker USB charger. Featured on the monitors is the lovely Jeff Tan-Ang who now works for Apple in Cupertino! Hi Jeff.
In June 2014 I started a new job as a Linux (mainly, bit of Windows too) admin and this was my desk. Not a home setup, but I spent just as much time sitting here as I did at home, so it deserves to be here. Just a boring regular cubicle, even has my name up on the partition. Had to use a Dell Latitude (I think 7000 something) which wasn’t that bad.
In December 2014 (maybe November, but I didn’t take the pic until December), I moved back to a 15″ Retina MacBook Pro, hooked up to a 27″ Dell LCD. You can see my pile of stuff to sell sitting on top of that Dell R710 server. LIFX, an old Apple TV, an Edgerouter. Also a pair of socks because I’m filthy. They keyboard, mouse and speakers there, I’m still using now.
In Feb 2015, as part of my job reviewing stuff for PC & Tech Authority, I had two ASUS 27″ LCDs, so I hooked them up to the MacBook Pro for a while until ASUS asked for them back a few months later. Three 27″ monitors, nice.
By August 2015, I moved house, to a much larger study space. Here it is in its first setup, with the 15″ Retina MacBook Pro.
In November I chucked up a shelf on the wall to store some crap.
Around the start of the 2016 I was low on cash, so sold the MacBook Pro (bad decision really) and moved to a HP Elite 8200 SFF box, with an i5-2400. It’s actually a really capable machine for the $150 or so I paid for it. Runs practically everything I throw at it. But it’s a Windows box. Using Windows is my punishment for spending excessively.
Now we come to today. This is my setup as of late April 2016. I finally got a Philips BDM4065UC 40″ 4K monitor and found a ridiculously cheap 27″ Retina iMac with 16GB of RAM, 4GHz i7 CPU and Radeon M295X graphics.
I really, should hang on to this setup for many years. But who knows what itch I’ll have to scratch or what new laptop Apple will release?
On the 19th of May, 2017, I got a Surface Studio to check out and placed it side by side with the iMac. Pretty slick looking machine. I sold the Philips 4K monitor off a few months earlier and was just using the iMac on its own, no 2nd display.
This was my setup for a few more months.
In Jan 2018, I sold the iMac because I was once again, short on cash, and used a Lenovo T430s hooked up to 27″ Kogan monitor for a little while (bonus selfie as I was trying out my new selfie stick). Check out the speakers on the shelf – they were given to me as a swap by someone for a monitor. I forget what they were called, but they pumped out some great sound.
Here’s the setup I’m using now! On the 3rd of March I splashed out and got an iMac Pro. I plan to keep this for at least 5 years, but I’ve said that before and didn’t last, so… let’s see if I come back here and update this post with new photos.