While the Mac wasn't the first Apple computer, for many people it represents Apple's design and corporate philosophy the best. By creating the first personal computer that could literally be used by anyone, Apple and the Mac set the standard for generations of computer owners.
In this, the last of our TUAW Best of 2012 Awards posts, we'll look at all of the best software and hardware products for Mac as nominated and voted for by TUAW readers. Be sure to check out our TUAW Best of 2012 iPhone and iPad winners as well.
Best Mac Game App of 2012
Rovio hits the trifecta, with Angry Birds Star Wars ($4.99) winning the Best Game of 2012 for iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Picking up 52 percent of the total vote, the irritated avians handily beat out runner-up Sid Meier's Civilization V: Campaign Edition ($39.99).
Best Mac Music App of 2012
In a landslide, Apple's iTunes 11 (free) won the Best Mac Music App honors with a whopping 81 percent of reader votes. Apparently, the redesign of the Mac's default music app resonated with readers, who were overwhelming in their support of the app.
The app that lets you "soundtrack your life," Spotify (free) was the runner-up in the Mac music app category, grabbing a respectable 11 percent of the vote.
Best Mac Photo App of 2012
Apple's pro photo app, Aperture ($79.99) brought home the trophy in the photo app category for Macs. Third-party apps didn't fare too well this year, as the runner-up was another Apple app: iPhoto '11 ($14.99, included as part of iLife '11 on all new Macs).
Best Mac Productivity App of 2012
When TUAW readers reach for an app that's going to help them become more productive, they go for Alfred (free). This app won in 2011 as the best Mac utility -- this year, it moved to the productivity category and handily wiped out competition like runner-up Evernote (free). Congratulations to the Running With Crayons development team on making a great app even better in 2012.
Best Mac Social Networking App of 2012
The winner in the Mac social networking app category was a surprise. Sure, everyone uses Twitter and Facebook, but a lot of our readers apparently also love their Jabber, MSN Messenger, AIM, Yahoo! Messenger, ICQ, and IRC, because the big winner with almost half of the total votes was Adium (free).
Best Mac Utility App of 2012
As votes were being tallied for the Mac categories in TUAW Best of 2012 voting, I wondered if AgileBits would pull in another win for 1Password ($49.99). After all, it had won in both the iPad and iPhone utility app categories. Sure enough, 1Password remains a favorite of TUAW readers as almost 60 percent of those voting selected the app as their favorite Mac utility.
The next most popular utility app as voted by TUAW readers was MacPaw's CleanMyMac ($29.95 for lifetime license). The app cleans out caches and logs, completely removes apps, and pulls out those internationalization files that can eat up hard disk space.
Best Mac Video App of 2012
Aperture won our Best Mac Photo App of 2012 award, and Apple's Pro software teams continued the family tradition in the video app category. Final Cut Pro X ($299.99) trashed the competition with almost 43 percent of all reader votes.
Runner-up in this category was Handbrake (free), a widely-used and loved open source video transcoder. If you've ever wanted to convert a DVD to a digital format for viewing on your Mac, iPhone or iPad, Handbrake is the way to go.
Best Mac Accessory of 2012
There was no contest in the Mac accessory category: the winner, the Apple TV ($99) was the overwhelming favorite with almost 90 percent of the vote. It's almost worth saying that if you own a Mac, iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, you need an Apple TV as well.
The runner-up for best Mac accessory of 2012 was a fitness device. Fitbit ($59.95 for the Fitbit Zip, $99.95 for the Fitbit One) is a great way to keep track of just how active you are during the day and how well you sleep (Fitbit One only) during the night.
Best Mac Peripheral of 2012
LaCie has been in the Mac peripheral business for many years, and the company pays attention to details when designing its storage products. This year's best Mac peripheral is the company's mobile Thunderbolt drive, the Little Big Disk ($349.99 to $999.00, available in both HD and SSD varieties).
An Apple product made it into the runner-up position. The Magic Trackpad ($69) is a favorite of many Mac desktop computer users, providing multi-touch gesture support for Mac OS X.
And that, dear readers, is the last of the TUAW Best of 2012. As before, we thank you for your participation both in nominating your favorite devices and software during the past year, and for supporting those choices with your votes.