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The price of macs is directly compatible with PC now. They just don’t really offer a "low end" mac per se. I’ve done quite a few Dell configurations through their online store and when you match specs exactly, the Dell is always higher (including the monitor specs.) I know you can build a PC yourself using parts from various vendors etc, and get it done cheaper – but that type of setup is usually reserved for the tech savvy.
The thing I’m now enjoying about the mac is that you can easily install Windows and either dual-boot, or run it within the mac OS – so you can have both platforms on one machine. Some people are hoping that you will soon be able to install Mac OSX on a vanilla windows box, but that doesn’t seem likely so far.
I’ll tell my short story of why I switched to mac for video. I had a powerful (at the time) Dell tower, and I went and purchased a firewire card, which came with the Adboe editing software. Try as I did, there was always something that went wrong on the video capture, or when I had the footage and tried to edit it etc. So on a whim, I connected my camera to my wife’s iBook, which ha iMovie pre-installed, and voila! It captured all of my footage without a single hiccup, and then I wrote the edited video back to a clean tape! That’s all I needed to drop Windows and switch to mac.
I know that editing video on Windows has been greatly improved since back in late 1999, early 2000, but that one experience alone made me switch permanently. And luckily for me, I’m not a gamer, nor do I need any special "windows only" software.
I doubt you can go wrong no matter what you decide. Good luck!