12" powerbook really hits the sweet spot!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Chrispy, Aug 28, 2005.

  1. Chrispy macrumors 68020

    Chrispy

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2004
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    Avon, IN
    #1
    With all the talk floating around today about how crappy apple service and quality control has been lately (and I completely agree to this) I decided to take a gander around the web and compare. I soon realized there is nothing that comes close to the 12" powerbook!

    Many forum members (myself included) go on and on about how much the 5200 gfx card sucks in the 12". We should be so luckly to even have that in it! Even the iBook 12" and 14" have a better graphics card than most PC laptops in this range. The only thing that even came close was a thinkpad T43 with the x300 (I have used this card before and it is not all that much better than the 5200.... and it was a 128MB model in a dell dual core machine). Also, the build and design on most PC laptops is horrible! And when I did find a laptop that looked ok, it was at least 14" or larger and weighed 5.5+ pounds. The smaller laptops had reduced size keyboards and I can tell from experience on a dell 700m that a reduced size keyboard is a pain to get used to.

    Finally, as far as price goes, Apple wins again :eek: Don't get me wrong, as far as desktop units go, Apple gets schooled on the speed vs price game. However, while the Pentium M is a faster CPU, it is teamed with poor design, lacking features and poor engineering and/or craftsmanship. The T43 I configured was $1850 shipped. And finally, if you want DVI out on a compact PC laptop... forget it! You have to buy a docking station to be able to do it. I never really realized just how much the 12" powerbook stood out in the crowd. I have one on its way to replace a bad 15" and I think my ex g/f is going to have one too. I don't even care about the upcoming update as I just want a nice, compact, pixel perfect, working powerbook! If I want gaming power, I will buy a cheap Dell and slap a decent GPU in it.
     
  2. Hattig macrumors 65816

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    Location:
    London, UK
    #2
    Yeah, the vast majority of PC laptops are pretty damn ugly.

    Me? I'm really happy with my iBook. Sure, I could have bought a 15" widescreen PC laptop for the same price, but the extra hardware features aren't worth it for the pleasure of running Windows XP.

    The IBM notebooks are good quality however, and that's when you notice that the reason that many PC notebooks are cheap is because they use cheap components. However in several areas (displays in particular) I think that PC laptops are ahead. However that is only if you are a technology chaser - I personally think that Mac OS X makes more efficient use of a 1024x768 display than Windows XP does with its Duplo™ interface. It would have been nice to get a 1280x800 widescreen display though - maybe the next Powerbook 12" :S

    Apple still got the best scores for customer support, a full 10% or so higher than Dell. That's what cost cutting to sell cheap stuff will get you.
     
  3. ph0rce macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2005
    #3
    I love my 12" iBook. it's super! the screen is just right because it is always so close to my face :) when i get home i can just plug it in to my screen at home :D
     
  4. amin macrumors 6502a

    amin

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #4
    I totally agree with the original post. Compared to my wife's Dell 700m, which was a similar price and has a comparable size when you include the almost mandatory extended battery, the Powerbook is way better looking, more solid, has a graphics card (Dell is integrated), slot-loading drive, has a way-better keyboard, runs a better OS, has better sound, etc. The Dell has three advantages: faster processor, better display, and integrated SD card slot.
     
  5. dmw007 macrumors G4

    dmw007

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    #5
    I totally agree with your post Chrispy, the 12" PowerBook G4s are awesome laptops. Enjoy it when it comes.
     
  6. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #6
    Don't hear as much talk about the 17" as you do the 12" or the 15"

    Why is that?

    I think I'd like a 12" with an external monitor/keyboard at home

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
     
  7. ginner macrumors member

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    Jan 6, 2004
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    Yorkshire, England
    #7
    My Sony Vaio S1XP is over a year old and still compares favourably to the 12" powerbook. The 13" widescreen is highly portable and the screen quality of the X-black display far excels that on the Apple machine.
     
  8. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #8
    But it has one fatal flaw... it doesn't run Tiger :eek:

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
     
  9. Mac_Freak macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    #9
    I love mine 17" PB, it is just so cool. THe screen is just the right resolution; I can still read everything without any straining of my eyes.
    The display eliminates the need for external display, plus working on a road with such a big display a huge advantage.
    Plus my 17" PB is comparably the same size plus lighter than my buddy's 15" Sony Viao A230 with 1.6Ghz Pentium M. Oh when he was playing the HD clips from Apple's web site his frame rate was on avarage 1-2 frames sloer than mine, plus the GUI was useless during that time- too choppy.

    I am am almost affraid of the next gen PB because I love the styling of the current once so much that in my eyes their design can only get worse.

    This is my first laptop, so I can't campare portabylity to some other once but I am fine with the size and weight of this one. But the sze is worth the extra weight and bigger screen: here is my friends reaction -"WOW, you are watching videos in iTunes and working in Photoshop?!"

    PEACE!!!
     
  10. Hattig macrumors 65816

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    London, UK
    #10
    That's what I don't get about Apple. They did widescreen laptops, then 17" laptops ... but they never continued, they never brought widescreen to the smaller displays in the PowerBook range. They went into 'Static Product Line' mode, which is so typical of Apple, why don't they fight to keep their products ahead of the field?

    It must be incredibly hard to resist a 13.3" 1280x800 display, or the numerous 10.6" 1280x768 widescreen displays in other PC laptops. Quite why Apple never created something along these lines is beyond me.
     
  11. Chef Medeski macrumors 6502a

    Chef Medeski

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    Jun 14, 2005
    Location:
    New York, NY
    #11
    I did similar research before getting the 12" Pb I am typing on. My closest choice was the IBM T43, but to get it to have similar specs it would cost the same thing when I got my rebates for being a student. So, it was simple choice to go for OS X and drop the XP. My friend actually has one and it looks good, but its just not worth the same price when its no longer IBM and now Lenovo.
     
  12. crazydreaming macrumors 6502a

    crazydreaming

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    Salt Lake City, UT -Westminster College
    #12
    Probably because it's pretty big for most people's uses for a laptop, and it is very expensive for a laptop...
     
  13. aquajet macrumors 68020

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    VA
    #13
    Oh is that so? Well then you better hope you get your G4 laptop soon enough, because the Mac sure is gonna suck next year! :rolleyes:
     
  14. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    Tampere, Finland
    #14
    mac next year is faster than mac this year - now tell me how that sucks.
     
  15. Koodauw macrumors 68040

    Koodauw

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    Madison
    #15
    Yeah, It is very hard to find a Windows notebook that is similiar spec wise, size wise, and in build quality. Most have integrated videos cards, and/or no internal Cd drives from what I've seen.

    Apple has done a very good job with the 12'' PB. IF only they could find away to give it a backlit keyboard!
     
  16. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    Tampere, Finland
    #16
    ...and a widescreen display
    ...and a pcmcia slot
    ...and a fw800 port
    ...and a gigabit ethernet

    :D :D :D
     
  17. jamie329 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2005
    #17
    Maybe you didn't read his post correctly.

    I don't believe he was saying the Pentium M chip is of poor design, but the computers it is usually placed in are of poor design.
     
  18. Chrispy thread starter macrumors 68020

    Chrispy

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    Avon, IN
    #18
    Yep! That is what I was trying to say. I think the Pentium M is a fantastic chip and I look forward to the day when Apple finally gets completely changed over to Intel. The fact of the matter is most of us use macs for the user experience and not always the speed. This is not as much of an issue in the portable world as it is in their desktop line. It will be great when there is a day when Apple is as fast as PC laptops AND runs OS X.

    And I totally agree that the powerbooks needs to go to a 13" widescreen aspect. I admit, sony has tempted me with their displays and IBM makes fantastic machines, however I just keep reminding myself of why I stopped using windows. It is worth not having full compatibility with my universities wireless network in exchange for having a computer that actually works. I re-formatted my friends Dell a few weeks back and it took hours to get all the updates and anti-virus stuff installed. When I have to restore a mac I just run the software update and in 30 mins or so I'm in business. Now that is what I'm talking about.

    Don't get me wrong, I will more than likely have a Dell Desktop around (very cheap one) for those times when I do need a PC. However, the mac will always be my primary machine.
     
  19. Demon Hunter macrumors 68020

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    Mar 30, 2004
    #19
    The 17" is sex. :)
     
  20. PaRaGoNViCtiM macrumors 6502a

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  21. dmw007 macrumors G4

    dmw007

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    #21
    Windows is truly always a fatal flaw. :rolleyes:

    Heck, thats why I can't bring myself to buy a peecee laptop-
    they use windoze instead of Mac OS.
     
  22. Chrispy thread starter macrumors 68020

    Chrispy

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    Avon, IN
    #22
    Agreed. If apple wasn't around I would own a Thinkpad T43 right now. They are possibly the most durable and solid laptop I have ever used but they run windows :( Of course, the Apple looks a million times better too!
     
  23. dmw007 macrumors G4

    dmw007

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    #23
    True, Apple products are easy to use and easy on the eyes! :)

    Try saying that about a Dell. :eek:
     
  24. aquajet macrumors 68020

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    Feb 12, 2005
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    VA
    #24
    So then how exactly do they suck? My work has some Dell laptops with Pentium M processors, they seem like great machines to me (except for the Windows part of course). The machines with Celeron M processor aren't too impressive however.

    It certainly won't. Just a little sarcasm. ;)
     
  25. Chrispy thread starter macrumors 68020

    Chrispy

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    Dec 27, 2004
    Location:
    Avon, IN
    #25
    It is not so much that they completely such it is just that the design on many PC laptops does not seem as solid or as well though out as the apple design. I do offer an exception to the Dell Latitude line and IBM Thinkpads as they are solid little machines.

    I had a bad run of luck with powerbooks (again but this time ordering from Amazon... I think they had been opened before tho and someone else noticed the damage before me and sent them back only for amazon to sell them again.... grrr) and I looked into a PC laptop. I never found one that suited my needs. I did, however, order a Dimension 5100C (got it for under $500) as my school is making owning a mac and accessing the network a real pain this year. I am going to order a powerbook after the updates and use it for all my other non-network related class work. I thought about a mini but for the price I got a lot more speed and when the powerbooks are updated I will have a PC to use when something just won't work on the mac.

    I also play WoW so going with the mini would have been a little restrictive for me with the 1.2GHz CPU and 32MB Radeon 9200 GPU. The 128MB Radeon X600 PCI Express card will suite my WoW needs nicely. Heck.... maybe I will just get a 12" ibook if the updates are not that impressive ;-)
     

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