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View Full Version : I need a laptop...should I wait?


illusioncm
Jul 21, 2003, 08:33 PM
Hello...I'm about to dive into the Mac world and get myself a laptop. I'm looking at the 15" 867mhz G4 Powerbook which is running at a firm $1,999 It's not absolutely crucial that I get a laptop this very moment, but I could have used it today to present some webdesign examples to a client. My main areas of focus are webdesign, and graphic design (oh and can't forget my music!). It seems that people have gone along fine using this machine the past couple years so I don't see why I would have any horsepower issues to deal with.

Anyways, the whole point of this post is...should I go ahead and make the purchase now or is there a new powerbook coming out that I should wait for? Do you see any new models coming in the near future? If so how soon? And how much? Will the G4 867 drop drastically in price?

I just don't wanna spend $2,000 to find out that if I had waited a month I would only have paid $1,500. Do you Mac gurus see any price change or new models coming anytime soon?

Thanks a bunch!!

AHDuke99
Jul 21, 2003, 08:40 PM
The new Powerbooks will arrive with faster G4's and bigger video cards, plus a new case, so if I were you I would wait, I am myself. They could be here as soon as tomorrow, but more than likely mid-late August. It will be September 16 at the latest, but August probably. You should wait.

MacUser1
Jul 21, 2003, 09:21 PM
i'm a student and although those recent discounts at the apple store for education are tempting, i am definitely waiting till the new powerbooks come out...hopefully in august so i can get final cut express for $99 and $200 of an iPod bundle purchase!

brig
Jul 21, 2003, 09:43 PM
Dont expect new laptops until september. They will be G4's. G5 laptops probably wont arrive until WWDC next year.

jzieske
Jul 21, 2003, 09:54 PM
If you don't have to have it now for something wait until the update. Even if you have to wait until Sep. you will porb be much happier. If you wait and don't think that the updated versions are with the cost you will prob be able to order the current version at a discount from either Apple or a reseller in your area.

Phatpat
Jul 21, 2003, 09:57 PM
I say go for it. You will enjoy it. It would suck if you ended up waiting 2 months....

Wyrm
Jul 21, 2003, 10:08 PM
We are certain every passing day puts it one day closer to an update.

We are certain that the new laptops will be better than the current ones.

We just aren't certain when that update will come.

- For what it's worth, I'm waiting - but then I already have a Powerbook (PISMO!) -

-Wyrm

Schiffi
Jul 21, 2003, 10:13 PM
I say go ahead and get the TiBook. The only bottleneck it has is SDR, but it doesn't bother me and I do video work for crying out loud. Webdesign, music, or even game playing should be fine on the TiBook. Though I did get the 1GHz, which is like maybe $300 more than the 867? Anyway, get it now! Though I am sad that mine is away being fixed, I still feel that it's the best.

pimentoLoaf
Jul 21, 2003, 10:36 PM
Part of me would grab a tiBook now -- at 1.0ghz & max RAM -- while another would wait to see what another month brings. The first part is 'round 90% of me, though if I were just starting out like you, I'd be 90% for the wait.

You can do quite a bit in one month, though, like read MacOS X (2nd Ed): The Missing Manual from cover-to-cover.

If you wait, you'll be on the "bleedin' edge" of bugs and new technology -- which is rather nice, sometimes.

Kwyjibo
Jul 21, 2003, 10:42 PM
Originally posted by Wyrm
We are certain every passing day puts it one day closer to an update.

We are certain that the new laptops will be better than the current ones.

We just aren't certain when that update will come.
-Wyrm

Isn't this the essence of Macrumors. Everyday since a product is upgraded we get one day closer to an update. Not many revisions get worse on any machine and nobody knows when it will happen until like right before

illusioncm
Jul 21, 2003, 11:10 PM
Well...I don't know wether to thank you or yell at you all! Haha, your comments have only made my decision harder now dammit! :D
Well, with that said, if a new powerbook comes out within the next couple months...does this mean that they will be the same price as the current ones but more powerful? Or does this mean the current ones will drop in price once the new ones come out? Just lookin for a little insight on the way apple works when a new release comes out.
Thanks for all your comments...they have been valuable so far!

ZildjianKX
Jul 21, 2003, 11:24 PM
Originally posted by illusioncm
Well...I don't know wether to thank you or yell at you all! Haha, your comments have only made my decision harder now dammit! :D
Well, with that said, if a new powerbook comes out within the next couple months...does this mean that they will be the same price as the current ones but more powerful? Or does this mean the current ones will drop in price once the new ones come out? Just lookin for a little insight on the way apple works when a new release comes out.
Thanks for all your comments...they have been valuable so far!

No one knows if they will be the same price... its save to assume >= at least, just not less than :p They probably won't discount current models, just phase them out. But seriously, wait... the damn laptop is 9 months old.

jstef
Jul 21, 2003, 11:32 PM
Lately this topic has been posted to death-- fortunatly, I'm in the same boat, so I don't mind seeing it over and over! :)

Here's my three options:

1. Buy the 15" now.
PROS: I'll have it in time for college and I'll end the 'waiting game' ASAP. It looks like a great machine and I'm sure it will do everything I need it to.

CONS: Paint chipping, old ram, wi-fi reception. Doesn't have AirPort Extreme or FW800, but I'm not sure I'll be needing those this year, maybe later.

2. Pay an extra $500 and get the 17"
PROS: Screen real estate, baby! I'm using a Gateway right now with a 19" monitor at 1600x1200 and I love it. Making that jump down to a lower resolution on the 15" is going to be a bitch. New case, FW800, AirPort Extreme, and updated video. I also end the waiting game and get a computer that will last me for 4 years.

CONS: Cost. Maybe a little too bulky.

3. Wait it out.
PROS: I get the latest and greatest 15" or 17". It's not going to be G5, of course, but it'll be a faster chip than 1Ghz. An updated Powerbook will last me 4 years of college. I'm not so sure the TiBook will be able to keep up after 4 years, it will be waaaay dated.

CONS: I'm lugging a 19" monitor and full-size tower to Colorado from New Jersey. Then I have to ship it home a month or two later. I'd also love to have my computer configured and ready-to-go when I get to school. Learning how to use a new computer once I get there might be more hassle than it's worth.

So, those are my options. The longer I wait, the closer I get to brand new Powerbooks. I think option 3 is pretty insane and I should probably just go for the 17", but I'll probably end up getting a new and improved 17" in just two months. :)

Wyrm
Jul 22, 2003, 12:09 AM
When in doubt, look at the buyers guide: http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/

It says: "Buy only if you need it - Approaching the end of a cycle"

So, if you buy it an update will follow shortly. If you don't buy it the next Powerbook update will take an eternity.

Hmm - consulting the magic 8-ball helps too.

Currently the 15" is the longest un-updated powerbook in recent history (not well shown by the Buyer's guide, since the 12" and 17" broke that)

-Wyrm

plutnicki
Jul 22, 2003, 08:14 AM
Bottom line: Everything will be updated. 6 months after the brand new G5 shows up, it will be updated with something. No one know the extent... You could wait a month, but then, what if it doesn't come, then you think you're a month away, so you wait again, and again, and again. Just one more month can add up. There are people here who have been waiting 6!

Not worth it , IMHO.

Buy the best computer you can afford now. It will last you. If it serves your purposes now, then it will continue to serve, willingly, for as long as you like. At some point, it will no longer continue to run the latest/greatest apps with ease. Given that 4/5 year old Macs seem to be running today's apps, albeit a little slower, I think you'll be safe no matter what you end up doing.

My TiBook should be here this week. I will enjoy it for a long time I'm sure.

Good luck!

As far as the cons to the current TiBook, paint chipping can be prevented by protecting your case with slipcases or something like the acmemade screen protector which also protects the case. Anything portable will get beat up over time.

There are antennas to help the PB's Airport reception IF you find you need it. It seems to me that some do and some don't... FW800 and AE, well, I admit, those would be nice, but not worth the extra $600 to go to the 17" for me...

Good luck.

...Jim

fratrow
Jul 22, 2003, 09:02 AM
What if I told you the update might come later today? Would you wait?

What about tomorrow?

What about next Tuesday?

Where do you draw the line?

plutnicki
Jul 22, 2003, 09:30 AM
Good point. Depends on if you had actual information from Apple, or if it's another rumor.

If you had concrete info that it was coming next Tuesday, I'd probably wait. If it was another rumor... Who knows.

I drew the line last week, I waited until MCP, nothing came, I said enough is enough and ordered...

I can't share all the info I have at my disposal, but I feel confident that I won't have buyer's remorse and that new PBs are more than "a few weeks" away.

...Jim

DrGonzo
Jul 22, 2003, 10:04 AM
Originally posted by jstef
Lately this topic has been posted to death-- fortunatly, I'm in the same boat, so I don't mind seeing it over and over! :)

Here's my three options:

1. Buy the 15" now.
PROS: I'll have it in time for college and I'll end the 'waiting game' ASAP. It looks like a great machine and I'm sure it will do everything I need it to.

CONS: Paint chipping, old ram, wi-fi reception. Doesn't have AirPort Extreme or FW800, but I'm not sure I'll be needing those this year, maybe later.

2. Pay an extra $500 and get the 17"
PROS: Screen real estate, baby! I'm using a Gateway right now with a 19" monitor at 1600x1200 and I love it. Making that jump down to a lower resolution on the 15" is going to be a bitch. New case, FW800, AirPort Extreme, and updated video. I also end the waiting game and get a computer that will last me for 4 years.

CONS: Cost. Maybe a little too bulky.

3. Wait it out.
PROS: I get the latest and greatest 15" or 17". It's not going to be G5, of course, but it'll be a faster chip than 1Ghz. An updated Powerbook will last me 4 years of college. I'm not so sure the TiBook will be able to keep up after 4 years, it will be waaaay dated.

CONS: I'm lugging a 19" monitor and full-size tower to Colorado from New Jersey. Then I have to ship it home a month or two later. I'd also love to have my computer configured and ready-to-go when I get to school. Learning how to use a new computer once I get there might be more hassle than it's worth.

So, those are my options. The longer I wait, the closer I get to brand new Powerbooks. I think option 3 is pretty insane and I should probably just go for the 17", but I'll probably end up getting a new and improved 17" in just two months. :)

You sound like a freshman. You don't need a computer there RIGHT away, i've said this in another thread. There are plenty of people w/ computers, plenty of labs, etc... And "learning" a whole "new computer" is not hard, especially when it has Mac OS X on it. You will have no problems with it. I haul a 19" monitor and full tower from illinois to colorado, though this is the last semester for that since i have a house there. Also, if you're looking for a total desktop replacement (ie you saying how the resolution won't be as high as 16x12) you're not gunna find one. The screen will still be quite nice and the machine fast enough for most things you throw at it. Why do you have to ship your computer back home? If you have a laptop leave your computer at school and take your laptop back home when you visit or stay for the summer, shrug. What school in CO are you going to?

jstef
Jul 22, 2003, 10:12 AM
Yeah, I'm a frosh. Shipping a big old honkin' Gateway out to school is not something I'm looking forward to. Sending it back is even worse. I could leave it out in CO once I get the Powerbook, but my mother wants it to put recipes and other motherly junk on it.

I'll be going to the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Likvid
Jul 22, 2003, 11:03 AM
All Powerbooks from Apple will in some time be 64-bit.

Apple releasing Panther in December right?

I would clearly wait til Apple releases their new models and then buy the best of them you can afford at that time.

DrGonzo
Jul 22, 2003, 11:24 AM
Originally posted by jstef
Yeah, I'm a frosh. Shipping a big old honkin' Gateway out to school is not something I'm looking forward to. Sending it back is even worse. I could leave it out in CO once I get the Powerbook, but my mother wants it to put recipes and other motherly junk on it.

I'll be going to the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Well, as I've said before, if you're not gunna like doing it, don't do it! Boulder campus has tons of computers, if you can't live w/o your OWN PERSONAL computer for a couple weeks at most, then something is wrong with you, especially if you're out in Boulder. Shipping the actual box isn't that bad, but shipping the monitor sucks.


Panther should be out on Sept. 16th or SOMETHING like that, sometime earlier than dec. afaik.

kzoonut
Jul 22, 2003, 04:05 PM
Once you reach Boulder, be sure to check out the COMUG group. They meet once a month at the NCAR in Boulder. Lots of good people and help for Mac users!

More info here: Colorado Macintosh Users Group (http://www.comug.com)

MacBoyX
Jul 22, 2003, 04:18 PM
Originally posted by Likvid
All Powerbooks from Apple will in some time be 64-bit.

Apple releasing Panther in December right?

I would clearly wait til Apple releases their new models and then buy the best of them you can afford at that time.

This has NO effect on what are buying now. Panther is NOT a 64bit OS. Let's remember folks that only G5's are 64bi and NO ONE EVEN HAS EM YET. There are tons of Macs out there that aren't 64 bit and won't be. Don't expect Apple to put out a full true 64 bit OS for quite sometime.

My vote is buy now. It's never been a bad thing in my opinion to own a Mac that is one release behind even if it has been around for 9 months.

All of this "waiting" does nothing but hurt Apple's sales and revenue. I love rumor sites as much as everyone else but this is a negative side effect.

An 867 TiBook will be just as good the day a 1.25 Ti book comes out as it is today and as far as new computer coming out the day after you buy one...that's Murphy's law.

Look how many people have been waiting for PB updates for the past 3 + months. I'd rather have had my Mac for those three months than be holding out for a new one.

Just my opinion...I could be wrong.

MacBoyX

pseudobrit
Jul 22, 2003, 05:40 PM
Originally posted by illusioncm
It's not absolutely crucial that I get a laptop this very moment

Wait not for price but for new features.

If all you're worried about is price, relax; the folks waiting to buy G5s for over a year will pay a premium for the new models over the G4 price.

They say something better's always around the corner, but for this particular PowerBook we're already halfway through the intersection.

Abstract
Jul 22, 2003, 06:02 PM
For everybody who says "Wait until September":

What if they announce new 15" PB's in September, but don't start shipping until early November or later? Then this guy has to wait 4 months or so.

I suggest you get the 15" PB if you want it now, and you think it can handle everything you want to do. If not, then the wait may definitely be worth it.

DrGonzo
Jul 22, 2003, 06:40 PM
Originally posted by Abstract
For everybody who says "Wait until September":

What if they announce new 15" PB's in September, but don't start shipping until early November or later? Then this guy has to wait 4 months or so.

I suggest you get the 15" PB if you want it now, and you think it can handle everything you want to do. If not, then the wait may definitely be worth it.

I agree that buying a PB Ti now or within the "going to school" timeframe is a good idea as it is a good price and a good laptop. However, I really doubt Apple will start shipping PBs in Nov. Though of course it's entirely possible, i just don't think so. For me it's gunna be like this, wait for the new 15 Alubook, buy it when it gets announced, and then sell it down the road after a revision of the g5. Apple products have a fairly high resale value, and you have student loans!

jstef
Jul 22, 2003, 11:17 PM
Originally posted by DrGonzo
Well, as I've said before, if you're not gunna like doing it, don't do it! Boulder campus has tons of computers, if you can't live w/o your OWN PERSONAL computer for a couple weeks at most, then something is wrong with you, especially if you're out in Boulder. Shipping the actual box isn't that bad, but shipping the monitor sucks.


Panther should be out on Sept. 16th or SOMETHING like that, sometime earlier than dec. afaik.

I could just ship the tower and buy an el chapo monitor when I get there. Maybe I'll buy one on the net, have it shipped to my dorm, and use that until I get the Powerbook. Then I can ship the CPU home and use the monitor with the PB once I get it.

Now that I think of it, that's not such a bad plan. I've already invested in a 160GB hard drive with firewire enclosure. If I have that and a monitor at my desk, then I have a machine that will behave like a true desktop when it's docked. Can you do dual-head with a Powerbook?

DrGonzo
Jul 23, 2003, 12:51 AM
Originally posted by jstef
I could just ship the tower and buy an el chapo monitor when I get there. Maybe I'll buy one on the net, have it shipped to my dorm, and use that until I get the Powerbook. Then I can ship the CPU home and use the monitor with the PB once I get it.

Now that I think of it, that's not such a bad plan. I've already invested in a 160GB hard drive with firewire enclosure. If I have that and a monitor at my desk, then I have a machine that will behave like a true desktop when it's docked. Can you do dual-head with a Powerbook?

Yah that's good thinking, i was thinking that when i posted it but you seemed pretty turned off by the whole monitor idea. I think on the newer powerbooks there is dualhead, though i'm quite unsure.

Docrjm
Jul 23, 2003, 01:55 AM
You can dual head with the power books, 12' vga
15 & 17 dvi
:cool:

jstef
Jul 23, 2003, 09:13 AM
Originally posted by DrGonzo
Yah that's good thinking, i was thinking that when i posted it but you seemed pretty turned off by the whole monitor idea. I think on the newer powerbooks there is dualhead, though i'm quite unsure.

The reason I'm turned off by the monitor is that I have to ship it twice-- Once at the beginning of the year and again at the end. For a 40+ lb. monitor, that's quite a bit of scratch.

Dualhead does sound sweet though. However, if I'm going to order the 17", which is what I'm leaning towards, I might as well order it today. If all I'm going to get is a 200-300 mhz speed boost by waiting, then why not get the thing today?

Decisions, decisions.

DrGonzo
Jul 23, 2003, 10:20 AM
Well decisions of course, but i'm sure you realize that there will always be something better out, not right away but guarenteed 3-6months, if you beat yourself up over it you give yourself unneeded stress and you don't get to enjoy your machine! Go for the 17" if that's what you want.

beefcake
Jul 23, 2003, 11:52 AM
I just finished ordering my 15" 1Ghz PB and I couldn't be happier. Yes, something may be just around the corner, but with the current discounts, I felt I made the practical decision. I can't wait until my new PB comes :D

jstef
Jul 23, 2003, 02:10 PM
So is the general concensus that the price of the 17" will jump above $3000 (with the student discount) once new models are released? I haven't been looking at this from the price angle.

If I order now, will I actually save anything over the cost of the new models? If I'm going to save 100-200 bucks and the only thing I'll miss out on is a few megahertz, then I'll order today.

DrGonzo
Jul 23, 2003, 02:22 PM
Originally posted by jstef
So is the general concensus that the price of the 17" will jump above $3000 (with the student discount) once new models are released? I haven't been looking at this from the price angle.

If I order now, will I actually save anything over the cost of the new models? If I'm going to save 100-200 bucks and the only thing I'll miss out on is a few megahertz, then I'll order today.

I'm guessing the prices are gunna stay the same, maybe go less, but i don't see them going up at all on the 17"s.

zuggerat
Jul 23, 2003, 11:26 PM
beefcake, i just ordered my 15 too...im so excited...i think we made a good decision we're only missin out on what..100-300 mhz..i maxed it with a gig of ram so i can counteract that anyways...my first apple too..i kinda like the titanium look over the AL anyways...let the stability begin!

Steven1621
Jul 24, 2003, 01:22 AM
wait till september for sure, but if you really need a laptop now, the current offerings are quite nice as well.