. . . a mac at 1000 dollars . . . an acer at 500 dollars
Remember, you will get what you pay for!
The Mac may be a better quality machine, but my experience with them is very limited. Also, the Apple system does have some disadvantages.
Acer, EMachine, and Gateway all come out of the same factory. I have known Acer notebooks that have lasted 6 years! I have also known Acer notebooks that have failed right out of the box, from the factory. As a general rule, if it's going to fail, it will fail within the first year. (Except for HDD's. Acer generally uses a low end HDD, that may or may not last more than 3 years.)
I suggest you try this forum, for help: