12" PowerBook - is it worth it?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by vladkor, Jul 24, 2006.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    Canada
    #1
    Hi there. I am interested in buying a used PowerBook. I was just seeking some advice as if I should spend money to get it. Thanks for all your suggestions in advance.

    Specs are as follows.

    For $1,200 CAD. (1,050 USD / 570 GBP)

    G4 1.5 Ghz
    1.256 GB RAM
    ComboDrive
    Mac OS X Tiger with iLife
    Second to last, PowerBook revision.
    Pretty much mint condition except for the usual wear and tear.

    Includes an iLap cooling station and InCase carrying case.

    Also has AppleCare until 2008 - is it transferable?

    And finally, should I get it?
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #2
    Considering a brand new baseline MacBook is CAD 1249 I would think twice... actually I would think more than twice before getting the PowerBook...
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    Canada
    #3
    Well, on that $1250, there would also be %14 tax. And as far as the MacBook goes, I am fairly disappointed with it. The integrated graphics, and the larger footprint make it all the less interesting to me. But I am thinking twice and that is why I am on MacRumors:D And thanks for the quick reply. Anybody else have any suggestions?
     
  4. Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #4
    Everyone poo-poos integrated graphics, but look at actual benchmarks... the last time the video card on the 12" PB got updated was a looooong time ago. It is probably faster at some things, but the MacBook is going to be generally faster at most things.

    I think the PB12" could be a good investment if the price were substantially lower than the one you posted, though.
     
  5. macrumors 68000

    Shadow

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Location:
    Keele, United Kingdom
    #5
    I can play Command and Conquer Generals Zero Hour on full settings with a decent framerate (in Windows) :eek:!
     
  6. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    #6
    Hi,

    I agree with the post that if you can get it for a decent price then it would be a good buy. I think once you approach the $1000+ mark, a macbook would be a much better buy. But also figure that you will have to spend extra on new memory and possibly new applications since things like office and photoshop will run slower.

    I bought my 12" 1.33/1.25gb used for $600. That way, I saved quite a bit when compared to getting a new macbook, and I'm pleased enough with the performance that I can happily wait to see what they have in store for the future or at least have the kinks worked out.

    So I say look for a used one that will have a decent gap in price from the macbook, and it will be a good buy. Plus, there really isn't anything in the market like the 12" powerbook. And in my opinion, once you get used to the aluminum look and feel of the powerbook, its hard to go to the ibook looking and feeling macbook. The black ones are nice but then its even more expensive and will have their own cosmetic issues as well.

    Good Luck!
     
  7. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2006
    Location:
    Manhattan, New York
    #7
    Integrated Graphics (in the macbook) own the graphics card in the 12" PB. Don't listen to the hype.

    Also, the macbook is wider, but it's also not as long, and much thinner.

    I HAD that exact powerbook, and I sold it for the macbook. No regrets whatsoever. Plastic is far better than the aluminum.
     
  8. macrumors regular

    rdp5008

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2006
    Location:
    Florida
    #8
    for the right price

    I just purchased a 12" Powerbook 1.5ghz, 1.25 ram, 60 gb hd, combo drive from someone on this site (he got a new macbook).

    I paid $800 shipped to my door. That is dangerously close to MB price, but no taxes, no extra money for ram etc, etc. The PB does more than I need to do and the hundreds of dollars I saved was worth it to me. I know it is a hot debate right now (problem with rev A macbook, bs or real? still better than old PB even if the rev A is sketch?)

    Long story short, only get a Powerbook if it is a good deal! I probably even paid too much! But I'm happy :) My applesac is coming from applesac.com, PIMP potato sack! I love the 12" design and the Al makes me hot~!

    I hope my crazy post helped at least a little. PM me if you have specific Q's about the 12" PB. And I have some friends with Macbooks, but I haven't really used one myself.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    Passante

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Location:
    on the sofa
    #9
    Refurb from the Apple Store $1200 faster processor. I'd go with the basic macbook

    Refurbished PowerBook 12-inch 1.5GHz SuperDrive
    512MB DDR333 SDRAM
    80GB Hard Drive
    NVIDIA GeForce FX Go5200 (64MB DDR)
    AirPort Extreme
    Bluetooth 2.0 + Enhanced Data Rates
    Learn More
    • Save 30% off the original price
    Original price: $1,699.00
    Your price: $1,199.00
    Estimated Ship:
    Within 24 hours
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    Add
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    #10
    I guess that's subjective, but personally going from aluminum to plastic just seems like a downgrade for me. The macbook just seems very much like a thinner, wider ibook that it is better built than the ibook. At least it doesn't creak like the ibooks did. But in terms of looks and feel, I just don't see how plastic is better than aluminum. Aluminum just feels and looks more professional. Again, the black ones are different. But the wear that many of the black ones exhibited that I saw in various stores just really were too distracting.

    In terms of durability, there is no question that plastic is better than aluminum. But I think there is no comparison in terms of feel and looks between a nicely taken care of aluminum powerbook/pro and the white macbooks.

    Hopefully there will be a smaller aluminum pro that will come out that will satisfy everyone in between the macbooks and pro's.
     
  11. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    #11
    Hi,

    $1200 is definitely too much to spend on the powerbook, even though the 12" is a great machine.

    A friend of mine was able to get that same model on ebay for $700 a little while ago, and before the one that I have now, I got a 12" 1.5 combo off ebay for $650. i was able to sell that one for $950 before the macbooks came out.

    Definitely look around but I think a used one that can save you some cash will be the way to go.
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    ricgnzlzcr

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2005
    #12
    My 12 inch powerbook is still going strong. I love it and it does everything I need it to do. My most intensive use is garageband and it's done everything that I've wanted. I do with I had more screen space now but this thing has been a trooper since I bought it. I recommend it if you can get a steal in price (i.e. 450-650 USD). If not then I would go with the macbook. Even without a dedicated graphics card it is very powerful. Half the people who complain about the graphics card don't actually need one. Like me, they'd rather have a gorgeous MBP or Powerbook. The macbooks are very well made and will serve you well I'm sure
     
  13. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    Canada
    #13
    Hey there everyone. Thanks for all the replys!

    Just something to ask - were you all talking CAD of USD?

    Now, for my part 2 of my query. Should I be getting the MacBook now, or waiting for Merom and see what happens? The problem is, I am going to be computer-less in a few days, and I require a portable. So, would it make sense to just get the MB now, and later on to get a nicer MacPro or iMac for the design stuff at home? Or, is the jump in performance between Core Duo and Core 2 Duo big enough that I should wait? Are they even going to be updating the MB with the Merom or is it going to the MBP? ...Sigh... Decisions, decisions, decisions...
     
  14. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    #14
    Wait if you can, but if you need it now, the macbook would be a good buy also. But I repeat, wait if you can...

    If you need a portable just to get around, I personally would prefer the cheapest laptop possible and then have a good desktop at home.

    Good Luck!
     
  15. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2004
    #15
    That's a good plan, cost-effective because you get more power from a desktop at a lower price.
     
  16. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    #16
    That's what I'm planning to do. Most people seem to be waiting for an upgrade on the laptop line, but I can't wait to see what they have in store for the new powermacs. I much rather spend my money on that power and have a decent laptop to do my basic work.

    But when you get close in price with the powerbook and macbook, then there is no doubt as to going towards the macbooks. See if you can save some cash with a used powerbook or even ibook just to hold you over - I think that's a safe bet.
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    ricgnzlzcr

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2005
    #17
    Actually, the macbook looks and feels surprisingly sleek. My mother's ibook doesn't feel like it would woo anyone because it felt like a toy to me. My girlfriend's macbook on the otherhand feels and looks amazing. I kind of want one now, but I do agree that aluminum still looks nicer. If the macbook had a 15 inch screen I'd be all over it like Whitney Houston on crack!
     
  18. macrumors 601

    generik

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2005
    Location:
    Minitrue
    #18
    IMO $1050 is too much to pay for that old Powerbook, let's see what you get and what you don't get..

    What you get with the PB:

    An alumiunium shell
    Old discrete graphics
    Matt screen

    What you get with the MB (aka what you won't get with the PB):

    A faster processor
    Oh wait.. a faster processor, and TWO of them!
    More future proofed platform

    While I don't mind paying more for that aluminium outer I really can't justify getting less for more.
     
  19. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2006
    Location:
    Manhattan, New York
    #19
    I think that's just apple marketing getting to us, but I hate to say it, I think it looks nicer too.

    But I'm fine with the black plastic. It feels like it's high quality (not like dells, etc), it doesn't ding, or dent, which was (is) a huge issue with the powerbook.

    It also doesn't pit like a lot of people experience with the aluminum, and surprisingly, I have no problems keeping my macbook clean, maybe once a week I'll wipe it down with a wet towel, which is a lot less maintenance than I can say I did for my Powerbook. I can actually wear a watch now while typing without the fear of scratching my computer.
     
  20. macrumors 6502a

    Obsidian6

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2006
    Location:
    Laguna Niguel, CA
    #20
    $1200 is a lot for a 12" man..

    I hate to say this, but the guy i traded my 17" PB ( which was max spec. ) to was only able to get $1250 for my laptop. now mind you that laptop cost me nearly $4k 2 years ago. these damn intel macs destroyed any and all resale value for PPC..
     
  21. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2004
    #21

    screw benchmarks. the macbook wont even run a good part of the final cut studio. My, now stolen, powerbook did reasonably well with it.
     
  22. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    #22
    depends

    How's your vision? Can you handle the small screen ok?

    Also, whatever you do, pls. do not buy a laptop w/o AppleCare. I've had two notebooks with repeatable problems; as such, I was provided TWO free upgrades. It's worth its weight in gold. You can get a nice neoprene sleeve to carry around in a day pack too.

    I have had no problems with my Al PB, zilch. I had nothing but problems w/the older plastic iBooks - but that was then.

    Good point 'tho earlier about the changes in the dual Intel chips making the older PPC's obsolete; however, if by chance you have software for a PPC, you should be able to get an older model and run in OS X w/o having to upgrade to binary. They ain't getting rid of pre-binary for a while IMO.
     
  23. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    Canada
    #23
    A proud owner of a brand new MacBook

    Hey there fellas! I thought, and thought, and thought. And this morning, after work (I work nightshift) I went and bought a brand new MacBook. A white one. (I know, don't kill me, but I actually preffer the white :D)

    This thing is very sweet. I really don't mind the bit of heat it produces. There are much worse things than this. And using a laptop such as this on my lap for too long would just make me scared of dropping it or some such. Therefore I have no problem following Apple's advice and keeping it on a table. And you know what, it doesn't get any hotter than my brother's old PowerBook. Now that thing would freaking burn you if you weren't careful.

    Anyways, thanks for talking me out of the PowerBook. The screens alone are of no comparrison. This thing really does kick ass :D

    Cheers!
     
  24. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    #24
    I have a pb 12 1.5 768 80gb sd in mint condition for 750 shipped to your door!
     
  25. Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #25
    Excellent choice... :)

    I'm pretty sure you'll be very happy with it. I know I love my white 2.0... just remember to get some 3rd party RAM when you can afford it. I took a bit of force to get them in there but with 2 GB RAM in place these gorgeous little machines fly... :cool:
     

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