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mcs37
Mar 10, 2005, 06:48 PM
As I look at the excellent design of the PowerBook, and think about how it could be made better some day (not just with a snazzy G5 CPU), I continue to question why Apple does not build a PowerBook that comes without a built-in optical drive. Seriously, folks, I use the optical drive in my PowerBook probably once per 3 months. I used it a lot in the beginning to import music into iTunes and to install some software. Since the initial install I rarely use the regular drive. An optical drive is an expensive unit on a laptop (both in terms of volume, battery consumption, and weight) and I've seen numerous Centrino laptops that weigh around 3 pounds but no optical drive on-board.

Sure, include a USB optical drive with the unit, but there should definitely be some model (in particular, the 12") that comes without a built-in one. I would imagine you could reduce its weight by slight under a pound but also reduce volume of the unit and possibly save some energy.

Maybe we'll get this with a G5 PowerBook some day?

jackieonasses
Mar 10, 2005, 07:03 PM
As I look at the excellent design of the PowerBook, and think about how it could be made better some day (not just with a snazzy G5 CPU), I continue to question why Apple does not build a PowerBook that comes without a built-in optical drive. Seriously, folks, I use the optical drive in my PowerBook probably once per 3 months. I used it a lot in the beginning to import music into iTunes and to install some software. Since the initial install I rarely use the regular drive. An optical drive is an expensive unit on a laptop (both in terms of volume, battery consumption, and weight) and I've seen numerous Centrino laptops that weigh around 3 pounds but no optical drive on-board.

Sure, include a USB optical drive with the unit, but there should definitely be some model (in particular, the 12") that comes without a built-in one. I would imagine you could reduce its weight by slight under a pound but also reduce volume of the unit and possibly save some energy.

Maybe we'll get this with a G5 PowerBook some day? That would end up pissing me off - due to the fact that i need the optical drive. I think you might be in the minority... Maybe a ultra light laptop.. But not the Pro-line Powerbook

kyle

mcs37
Mar 10, 2005, 07:07 PM
That would end up pissing me off - due to the fact that i need the optical drive. I think you might be in the minority... Maybe a ultra light laptop.. But not the Pro-line Powerbook

You'd still have the drive, but you would have to attach it to the computer. So you'd lose none of the functionality, only an arguable convenience. But again I think it would be a great feature on a 12" while the 15" and 17" can keep it.

jackieonasses
Mar 10, 2005, 07:07 PM
You'd still have the drive, but you would have to attach it to the computer. So you'd lose none of the functionality, only an arguable convenience. But again I think it would be a great feature on a 12" while the 15" and 17" can keep it. Then you would have to carry an external drive... negating the lightness factor. I kinda (in a pro book) want to carry everything i need.

Now if they had an iBook mini..... there you go..



kyle

wPod
Mar 10, 2005, 07:24 PM
removing the optical drive is just a cheap triky way that bad companies like DULL get their laptops as small as the powerbook!!! one of the main things for apple is to produce products that are simple to use, so removing the optical drive would only ad something you have to lug around and noone (except you) wants to do that. ok, maybe there are a few people, but working in the IT dept at my school, of normal users i deal with everyone HATES when they dont have an external drive. (ive had people ask me where to put in a CD then me tell them they dont have a CD drive!!!)

TEG
Mar 10, 2005, 07:34 PM
As I look at the excellent design of the PowerBook, and think about how it could be made better some day (not just with a snazzy G5 CPU), I continue to question why Apple does not build a PowerBook that comes without a built-in optical drive. Seriously, folks, I use the optical drive in my PowerBook probably once per 3 months. I used it a lot in the beginning to import music into iTunes and to install some software. Since the initial install I rarely use the regular drive. An optical drive is an expensive unit on a laptop (both in terms of volume, battery consumption, and weight) and I've seen numerous Centrino laptops that weigh around 3 pounds but no optical drive on-board.

Sure, include a USB optical drive with the unit, but there should definitely be some model (in particular, the 12") that comes without a built-in one. I would imagine you could reduce its weight by slight under a pound but also reduce volume of the unit and possibly save some energy.

Maybe we'll get this with a G5 PowerBook some day?

That would turn the Desktop Replacement\Notebook\Laptop PowerBook in to a Sub-Notebook piece of crap. Sub-notebooks, unless really small, or incredible battery life (>7hrs) are a waste.

TEG

revenuee
Mar 10, 2005, 07:39 PM
Personally i'm burning CD's constantly with either back ups or for delivery of my digital images from photo assignments, or Reading CD' that i burned from work when i scanned my negatives so an optical drive on my laptop is crucial

It's a tough call though ... everyone has different work flows, different needs

could work, and ultra light, ultra thin? laptop -- could work, since those small USB storage devices are so popular, and so robust if you need to transfer material quickly, one of those would suffice

Monk Edsel
Mar 12, 2005, 10:20 PM
I wouldn't mind an ultra-ultra thin (like, less than .5 inches) and light (less than... mmm... 2.5 pounds?) 'Book. Otherwise I think there's no point if you consider the fact that the 12", being the lightest, yet thickest, PowerBook, is far lighter and thinner than the average PC laptop. Also, I don't think it will really fit in the PowerBook line, if you consider one of the selling points of the PowerBooks is that you get a full-featured computer in a small, thin, lightweight package. On the other hand, I am not sure where you would put such an animal, I don't think the iBook line is correct either. The average consumer isn't interested in the thinnest-lightest-at-the-cost-of-the-optical-drive-laptop, but the traveling professional might be. Sooo yeah, I dunno. Might be a good iSlate or PowerSlate though.

bousozoku
Mar 12, 2005, 10:28 PM
Sorry, but I can't agree with having an external anything. I've worked with such machines and it's just too easy to lose things and you also have the external mess and things falling off the surface.

The current PowerBooks are perfectly light, thin, and nicely powerful. It's not a bad combination. If the optical drive was gone, I'd rather have another battery in there, like the WallStreet, Lombard, and Pismo lines.

rasp
Mar 12, 2005, 10:32 PM
From doing tech support, I can say that even those folks wanting the smallest machine possible, they generally don't like having the optical drive external.

Personally, I use the optical drive *just* enough to actually like having it built in. I did have a compaq that had this dock that clipped onto the bottom of the machine, that contained the optical and floppy drives. When traveling between home and work I'd not bother bringing it along, since it shaved 2 pounds. But there were times when I missed having the drive with me.

dotdotdot
Mar 12, 2005, 10:42 PM
That would suck... and why would they do that to the POWERBOOK? iBook is a laptop, powerbook is a desktop replacement for the most part... (generalized, of course)

I hate laptops w/o optical drives... I especially hate ones like Sony that have a dock that has all the USB ports and optical drive there so the laptop is lighter w/ 1 usb, 1 firewire, and nothing else...

Phatpat
Mar 12, 2005, 10:57 PM
I really like the idea of an ultra-compact laptop. Losing the optical drive is an easy way to do this.

I don't think Apple likes to take the easy way out. If they make such a computer, I doubt they will require you to plug in an external drive to install software, rip music, or whatever else you conventionally do with an optical drive.

Bonsaichop
Mar 13, 2005, 01:27 AM
Have you actually looked at the design of the powerbook?, the mainboard is minimal as it is. If you removed the optical drive, there would be a massive void. Your smallest screen which is 12" will still take up all the surface area.

What would you put where the drive was? Nothing? THat'd be a waste. Another drive? Well that defies the purpose now doesnt it? Another battery? Hello... another 400-500 grams.

Its a good idea, and Id love an absoloutley tiny powerbook, but its unrealistic. It can't really be any thinner, the thinest practical hdds are 9mm thick, what about batteries? the PCB is already a single layer. And if you get any thiner, you'll comprimise the sturdiness of the drive.

Its not that it cant be done, but there's no point in doing it.

Monk Edsel
Mar 13, 2005, 01:54 AM
Have you actually looked at the design of the powerbook?, the mainboard is minimal as it is. If you removed the optical drive, there would be a massive void. Your smallest screen which is 12" will still take up all the surface area.

What would you put where the drive was? Nothing? THat'd be a waste. Another drive? Well that defies the purpose now doesnt it? Another battery? Hello... another 400-500 grams.

Its a good idea, and Id love an absoloutley tiny powerbook, but its unrealistic. It can't really be any thinner, the thinest practical hdds are 9mm thick, what about batteries? the PCB is already a single layer. And if you get any thiner, you'll comprimise the sturdiness of the drive.

Its not that it cant be done, but there's no point in doing it.

Well, you could put the hard drive there for starters. You'd still have space left over, so you could make the battery wider, but flatter, as well. From the pictures I am looking at, these are the two main reasons the 12" is as thick as it is.

russed
Mar 13, 2005, 03:41 AM
i think myself and everyone else who has posted here is against this idea! personally i would just say it would become an incovenienve in the end. when you would have to carry the drive with you, you would be cursing due to the inconvenenience of having to carry the wires, prower brick with you etc.

Bonsaichop
Mar 13, 2005, 06:17 AM
Well, you could put the hard drive there for starters. You'd still have space left over, so you could make the battery wider, but flatter, as well. From the pictures I am looking at, these are the two main reasons the 12" is as thick as it is.

No offense, but Why move the hdd? It's already on its own. And, make the battery thinner? They wont be able to contain the amprage to make them last long enough. The thinner the batteries are, the smaller the surface coundit area for the chemical reaction which reduces the capacity of the battery.

Just to give you an idea, here is an xray of a 15" powerbook. Now, i know it isnt no 12" pb but it'll give you some idea of what im talking about. Apple has done an very impressive job at making the system's logic board soo compact, not many manufactuers can do that without multi-layering pcbs.

Idealy I would love to have a powerbook subnotebook, although the specifications would be that it would have a 10" or 10.4" screen with a 1024x768 resolution, around 1" thick with the usual condiments (airport, 60gig drive etc). Probably sacrifice the pcmcia aswell as there's no real use for it (yes i know there is alot of use for them but i mean for general use).

Im actually atm thinking of getting a powerbook 2400 and retrofitting an old snow 2001 ibook into it. or something along those lines. the extra thickness means i could pack in a larger battery maybe 2x internal drives. but then again its more a pipe dream than anything.

Jo-Kun
Mar 13, 2005, 06:30 AM
maybe some users would like the no-optical i/power-book but it will not happen...

in my case I would not mind having one without it since I would use it on location to shoot directly onto my laptop & since I do all the editing at home on the G5 that would not be a problem, come home, boot it as target and connect it trough FireWire to transfer it to the G5... but most people will be annoyed with the loss of an optical drive...

I remember my borther getting a laptop from work, and all the drives like floppy & cdrom were external... wich made it smaller, but he had to carry everyting with him because he needed to load some cd's or so when he was working... so there was no advantage in losing it internal...

Bonsaichop
Mar 13, 2005, 07:00 AM
maybe some users would like the no-optical i/power-book but it will not happen...

in my case I would not mind having one without it since I would use it on location to shoot directly onto my laptop & since I do all the editing at home on the G5 that would not be a problem, come home, boot it as target and connect it trough FireWire to transfer it to the G5... but most people will be annoyed with the loss of an optical drive...

I remember my borther getting a laptop from work, and all the drives like floppy & cdrom were external... wich made it smaller, but he had to carry everyting with him because he needed to load some cd's or so when he was working... so there was no advantage in losing it internal...

Your brother's use of the notebook is almost like an oxymoron. I've used subnotebooks in teh past for things like, when I was going to uni, I could hook into the uni's wireless, have alright battery life, type my notes, and because it was only 1.5kgs i could carry it like it was an extra book in my bag. bring it home, sync it with my notes on my pc and viola!

Subnotebooks are meerley extentions of your home computer, they're not meant for lugging external cd drives, floppy drives etc. If you want those things get an appropriate laptop.

Now, i know ur brother's work paid for his and he probably dindt have a say in it, but this is generally speaking.

Jo-Kun
Mar 13, 2005, 07:26 AM
He had this notebook from his work and indeed they decide ;-)

at the office they had dockingstations and stuff but since he was at that time designer for Toyota he had to go a lot on location to the factory in the UK

miloblithe
Mar 13, 2005, 07:31 AM
I don't understand why people keep arguing that a laptop with an external optical drive makes no sense because you just have to take the optical drive with you. Why on earth do you have to take the optical drive with you? When I go to the library to take notes on books, or to school to take notes in class, or to a coffee schop to work on a paper, why would I need to take the optical drive with me? I never would.

My work gave me a monstrous gateway laptop that must weigh 8 or 9 pounds. It's got several modular bays, and what I sometimes do with that computer is take out the optical drive and the disc drive and leave them behind when I take that computer from my office to the library at my job. I'd leave them out permanently if I had a secure place at work to put them.

Ultralight notebooks definitely have a use. So do very powerful notebooks that are harder to transport (because they are still much easier than desktops to lug around). Apple, unfortunately, does not have the resources to make 4 different lines of laptops (ultralight, consumer, prosumer, portable tank), so they have to make compromises with their line. I think they've done an excellent job of this, making very light yet full-featured laptops.

That said, if the next time I'm ready to buy a laptop, an ultralight, 3 pound, 13" widescreen powerbook with no internal optical drive were available, that'd be my choice in a second.

jackieonasses
Mar 13, 2005, 08:13 AM
I don't understand why people keep arguing that a laptop with an external optical drive makes no sense because you just have to take the optical drive with you. Why on earth do you have to take the optical drive with you? When I go to the library to take notes on books, or to school to take notes in class, or to a coffee schop to work on a paper, why would I need to take the optical drive with me? I never would.

My work gave me a monstrous gateway laptop that must weigh 8 or 9 pounds. It's got several modular bays, and what I sometimes do with that computer is take out the optical drive and the disc drive and leave them behind when I take that computer from my office to the library at my job. I'd leave them out permanently if I had a secure place at work to put them.

Ultralight notebooks definitely have a use. So do very powerful notebooks that are harder to transport (because they are still much easier than desktops to lug around). Apple, unfortunately, does not have the resources to make 4 different lines of laptops (ultralight, consumer, prosumer, portable tank), so they have to make compromises with their line. I think they've done an excellent job of this, making very light yet full-featured laptops.

That said, if the next time I'm ready to buy a laptop, an ultralight, 3 pound, 13" widescreen powerbook with no internal optical drive were available, that'd be my choice in a second. I know why we are arguing about having to carry external drives with us... Because we *need* them for work! Well, i do. Look, ON a plane? dvds.... At the shoot i need archiving and burning.... If i don't need the optical drive - i don't use it. I have never considered my Powerbook (12 inches of course) To heavy or bulky.... The only way i could *ever* consider the non-optical route would be...... A iBook mini... I highly doubt that would happen though...

kyle

Abstract
Mar 13, 2005, 08:13 AM
Its not that I'd HAAAATE getting a Powerbook with an external drive, but like Bonsaichop has already mentioned, there's a physical limit as to the thickness of the Powerbooks, or any laptop, since the harddrive isn't made thinner than 0.9" or something like that. Taking out the Combo/Super drive may save some weight, but the 12" isn't heavy anyway. Not at all. I mean, you'd have to be pretty weak to even notice the bit of weight you save by taking out the optical drive.

I walk 25 minutes to school my 12" PB every day.

And as mentioned, what do you do with that space? You could make the battery bigger, I guess, but that just adds weight, which is the reason you took out the optical drive to begin with!!

Complete solutions are better. The only reason other companies offer laptops with external drives is because it makes the physical specs of their systems "seem" competitive.

miloblithe
Mar 13, 2005, 09:01 AM
It is possible to make a thinner laptop.

Powerbook
4.6 lbs.
1.18" H x 10.9" W x 8.6" D

ThinkPad X40
3.09 lbs
1.1 in x 10.6 in x 8.3 in

Portage R100
2.2 lbs
0.8 in x 11.3 in x 9 in

ASUS S5N
2.87 lbs
0.9 in x 10.8 in x 8.8 in

cb31
Mar 13, 2005, 09:57 AM
I can't quite understand most people on this thread. Someone has suggested Apple make a thinner laptop without optical drive because it would suit him. What is the problem? If you need an internal optical drive then buy a laptop with one, simple.

People have said that they can't be made thinner or lighter so there is no point? My 4 year old Sony Vaio weighs 1.7kg and the thinnest modern ones weigh 1.1kg, nearly half what a 12" powerbook weighs. It can and is being done. When you need to use an optical drive connect one using firewire on the odd occasion.

My point of view is that I am looking to replace my Vaio with a apple laptop. What I want isn't really available. I need as thin/light as possible, screen res above 1024x768, love the illuminated keys, love the idea of Tiger, like the battery life.

I am going to wait until the next incarnation of powerbooks when hopefully there will be something to suit me.

Bonsaichop
Mar 13, 2005, 07:09 PM
It is possible to make a thinner laptop.

Powerbook
4.6 lbs.
1.18" H x 10.9" W x 8.6" D

ThinkPad X40
3.09 lbs
1.1 in x 10.6 in x 8.3 in

Portage R100
2.2 lbs
0.8 in x 11.3 in x 9 in

ASUS S5N
2.87 lbs
0.9 in x 10.8 in x 8.8 in

I never said it wasnt, its just not practical. Have you ever held a portege r100? it feels like you could literally snap it in 2. Not to mention, it has a trident based video card. 1.1ghz processor. And best of all the price? US$1999. For less than that you can get a 1.5ghz g4 pb with superdrive and a fx5200-2go!

Once again

It's not that it cannot be done. Its just not practical.

By stripping away the optical drive, you're left with an empty void that cannot be filled because there is nothing to fill it with. You cannot put a larger battery in there it adds weight. You cannot fit a thinner battery because it wont hold the capacity. you cannot put the hdd there because its already on its own with nothing layering above or below it.

People who use Sub-Notebooks do not carry extra USB/Firewire/PCMCIA devices, they're intended purpose is to provide the essential needs for those who need a light solution. If you carry a subnotebook with every accessory under the sun it is your own punishment.

Having said that, people who are given Sub-Notebooks by their work or whatnot do not have a choice about it. This is not your fault but you should be bitching to your work. Not here.

Some people use the optical drive all the time. Some only use it to install the operating system. This is your own problem!!!! There wouldnt be subnotebooks if there wasnt a market for them. At the same time there are optical drives because alot of people like it. AT THE SAME TIME AGAIN there are 17" powerbooks which i personally think are horrendusly stupid, HOWEVER they do sell and Apple STILL SELLS THEM.
The THINNEST standard 2.5" laptop HDDS are 9mm thick. This is the thinnest standard laptop/notebook hdds available. YES i know there are 1.8" drives that power the ipods, YES i know there are compact flash drives, but the performance/price/reliability of these drives are poor and they were never intended to be used as laptop hdds.
The price to design, engineer, fabric process and deliver another line of sub-notebook powerbooks and have it cheaper than the current 12" powerbook would be unreasonable. The Portege R100 is the same price as a 15" Tibook with Combo drive and more expensive than a 12" powerbook with a superdrive!



And once again, don't get me wrong I would love an Apple Sub-notebook and i would go into euphoric fits and spasms until I owned one myself. Ideally it would have to have a 10.4" 1024x768 display, no more than 1" thick, decent battery life and all the usual apple comodities. But I do not believe that there is such a popular market for one in the Western (by that i mean America+Friends, Europe, Australia-where im from) market. The japanese probably have one already and don't want to tell the world about it.... Im already cursing them for having the powerbook 2400c (which i would kill for..).

Monk Edsel
Mar 13, 2005, 07:58 PM
Man, some of you guys have NO imagination. I am really floored by comments like... an empty void would be left that could not be filled if you removed the optical drive. Well, I suggested ways to fill it for one thing. (The 17" is extremely thin, has nothing above or below the hard drive, a very thin battery and seems to be A-okay to me.) For another, all you would have to do is engineer a new design for it as, uh, Apple and every other company on the planet continues to do with every new product. Third, this is, you know, Apple. The Mac mini, I mean, who saw a form factor like that coming? Which one of you anticipated something so small? And would have said it couldn't be done before they saw it with their own eyes? This very discouraging talk really shocks me, coming from none other than what I presume to be Apple loyalists. Especially the the habit of citing other sub-notebooks that they feel are subpar. This is APPLE, people. Completely different ball game. How many other laptops out there have you seen encased in aluminum, for example? And that's just for starters.

Also, I am so relieved some of us are pointing out the fact that with a sub-notebook, the whole point is to leave the optical drive at home and not lug it with you everywhere, otherwise you would just get a regular PowerBook. And please let's not assume that someone who wants a lighter notebook is physically weak? I mean, whaaa? I can assure you that when my bag is full of school crap, my left shoulder most certainly notices the additional 4.7 pounds of weight when I bring my twelver with me. If I could shave a couple pounds off that I'd be happy.

Cost is also not such a strong factor I don't think. It would not have to be cheaper than the 12" because you are paying more for less, so to speak. It couldn't be more than the 15", though. Even if you want to argue that it would not be suitable for the Western market (which may or may not be true), it could at the very least be made available online only, which is not unheard of.

kubark42
Mar 18, 2005, 02:12 AM
I just bought a 15" PowerBook. It shipped a few hours ago. I haven't owned an Apple product since the IIe. I've been using an Acer TravelMate for the last three years, and haven't been disappointed. I personally would very much like to see a PowerBook that had no optical drive, as I've managed just fine for three years without one.

Now, I understand that some people use their drives all the time, but, heck, some people use floppy drives all the time, too, but I'm more than happy to not have one in my computer. I fell the same for the CD drive. All other things being equaly, I would rather have a space saving whole than the added weight of a drive, even though it only weighs a few grams.

I have no idea what to put in the whole, and frankly that doesn't concern me. Nothing would be fine. Or a motherboard that's a little less cramped and thus a little less expensive to manufacture. Or a PowerBook that can actually be taken apart by mere mortals. Unless I'm mistaken, none of us are design engineers, so we don't really know what sort of tradeoffs and engineering hours were spent to shoehorn everything in. It could be that taking out the drive could result in a 10% savings or more on every computer.

As to those who say that the ultra-lights are very flimsy, I say, "So what?" They're so light they can afford to be. Just because it feels as if it can be broken in two doesn't mean it can be. My glasses look that way, but A) they can't be, and B) the weight wouldn't be worth it even if they could.

A few grams on 2.6kg is quite significant, especially since my Acer only weighs 1.8kg. I'm definitely going to notice the difference. I don't regret my choice to puy a heavier laptop, but I will definitely have some days where I'll pine for something lighter. Those who say that you'll never notice the difference in weight might try lugging the laptop around day after day, country after country. With 80GB in hard drive space, I certainly don't need to bring any CDs or DVDs with me when I travel.

Just a choice, you're not obliged to feel the same.

AlmostThere
Mar 18, 2005, 06:10 AM
I generally think this is a good idea. The only use for an optical drive is basically entertainment or multi-media (YMMV - video and photo processors still work with multimedia) but not everyone needs or wants that.
My principle external i/o device is the ethernet port followed by an external hard drive. In my new PowerBook I have put ONE disk in the drive - and that was to check it actually worked!

vis-a-vis line up : this was suggested in a thread sometime ago. I see one possibility for this as a PowerBook come the G5 PB (or G4-dual core). The 15 and 17" move to the new processor which is likely to have power and heat issues. The 12" possibly stays could use with the top G4 or maybe G5 / G4-DC but moves up to a 13" wide screen.

That leaves space for a 10" that can be introduced with a current G4. The point to note is that it earns it's position in the pro line through the "executive", ultra-mobile market not through its processing power.

Apple already sacrifice power and features for portability with the 12" PB (i.e. RAM, CPU, GPU, PCMCIA, Gigabit Ethernet, FW 800) and so there is scope for this to extend this further, the precedent is already set for different architecture across a single line.

Furthermore, it is about getting these devices into the hands of people with "power" i.e. managers. I personally know a few and if you make a sexy, cool, ultra-light laptop that works and show it to the boss, they will want one, it will be made to work in the IT department of a company, the IT department will warm to Macs because what the Boss says, goes. They have no respect for IT practicalities and good on them for it.

And that is all good for Apple as it provides a means to skip the inertia in getting Macs into the corporate work place which means $$$.

Lastly, it doesn't have to be flimsy at all - I don't judge my current PowerBook by the offerings of various PC manufacturers - it is slick, solid, strong, light and looks great too. I think implying an Apple ultra-portable would be equally flimsy or have great gaping holes where the optical drive was does a great disservice to the Apple engineers.

Passante
Mar 18, 2005, 07:07 AM
Until I read this thread I would agree that the compromises of not having an optical drive would negate the benefits of an ultra light. Then I started to think about how I use my 12Ē Powerbook and realized that I donít use the optical drive that often.

I have a tower and burn most of my music on that.

Backups go to an external drive.

Single files are transported on usb drives.

Sure I have pictures that I want to burn to CD but that can be done via firewire taget disk mode

I donít remember the last time I installed software from a CD. Most new software is downloaded. Wi Fi has really reduced the need for CDs.

Rendezvous has allowed me to share music and files without resorting to burning discs.

So I think I could live without the optical drive. A laptop without an optical drive would definitely not be a good choice for people with only one computer. But those of us with a desktop and wi fi might find that we could live without the drive.

Maybe Apple could cram a G5 into a powerbook without an optical drive! :D

Bear
Mar 18, 2005, 07:31 AM
Until I read this thread I would agree that the compromises of not having an optical drive would negate the benefits of an ultra light. Then I started to think about how I use my 12Ē Powerbook and realized that I donít use the optical drive that often.
...Well said.

What everyone needs to remember is that 1 product does not fit all. Otherwise why would there be so many different models of iPods (for example)?

Some people need the optical drive capability when on the road so having the built-in optical drive makes sense. Having to carry an externa drive would add extra weight overall. Also, if the external drive requires its own powerbrick that adds even more weight.

Some people only need the optical drive (normally) when they are at home or maybe in the office. Some people I know who have external optical drives for their laptops keep one at home and one in the office to cut down on the weight they carry around.

The real question would is would making a Powerbook with an externl optical drive be cost effective for Apple to do? It doesn't matter if you would use it. All that matters is would enough people would buy it?

For myself, I would be getting the PowerBook with the drive internally as I use it often enough and not just at home or in the office. On the othe rhand, I have a USB floppy drive that stays at home (usually) and gets used about 2 or 3 times a year at most.

173080
Mar 18, 2005, 08:16 AM
Apple makes full-featured notebooks, not crippled knockoffs. ;)

Besides, the current slot-loading drives look awesome. :cool:

anthonymoody
Mar 18, 2005, 08:16 AM
I must say that all you folks coming down hard on this idea because the end product does not suit your particular needs simply need to get out more. Open your eyes. And think back to all the products you thought would be complete failures because you didn't "get" them or were priced "way too high."

Sub-notebooks are a real category - and Apple has a gap in its line in this regard. And if you think the 12" PB is smaller and lighter than most PC laptops then again - you need to get out more. Check out places like dynamism.com and remember - most of these models also have US-targeted equivalents (the Japanese models Dynamism imports tend to be 1 generation of CPU ahead of the US models).

I'm talking 3 pound notebooks WITH CD/DVD drives, and HALF INCH THICK 2.5 pound notebooks without drives. And yes...wth REAL 5+ hour battery life thanks to Intel's very effective low-power consumption mobile pentium lines (one of the only bright spots for them).

If you don't see the utility in this sort of thing then again - you need to get out more, open your eyes and realize that the world is a big place and your own needs don't come even a little bit close to representing the whole.

TM