15 inch PBook vs 12 inch PBook + 17 inch Display

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by stoid, Mar 14, 2004.

  1. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #1
    Right now I have the 1.25 GHz version of the 15 inch Aluminum PowerBook. I had it BTO to take out the SuperDrive for a Combo, and downgraded the HD to 60GB. It suits my need rather well. However, as with most college campuses, desk space is extremely limited and taking a 15 inch laptop will not even really fit on the desk.

    I am therefore considering selling this machine and buying a 12 inch PowerBook to take with me to classes, and then a 17 inch Flat-Panel monitor to sit on the desk in my room to give me even more screen space for big-time project work.

    I want the BlueTooth and WI-FI built in, though I'm still considering Super vs Combo Drive. I need the machine to comfortably handle Flash, all manner of scripting (probably via VirtualPC since we do programming on Windows boxes), Photoshop, Final Cut Pro 3, and obviously internet and word processing. It would also be very nice to be able to play at least Halo and other higher end games.

    I would like to discuss pros and cons of changing my technology set-up. As I see it so far: Pros would be bigger screen size and better display quality. Also more portability for the book itself. Cons would be less power/features in the notebook.

    Things I don't know are: I'm going for bang-for-buck here, so what's the best monitor I can get on the cheap? However, if Apple's are simply the best, I'll spend the extra for it. What's the battery life like in comparison. I generally get 2.5-3 hours out of my 15 inch, is that likely to go up or down? What else am I not thinking of that I should be before making this purchase?

    Another question is time-frame. I have some projects throughout the summer that will require the use of my laptop as a portable video editing station. However, either set-up would work, I just wouldn't be able to switch over in the middle. I would like to upgrade though by next school year. I know that new monitors should be out ReallySoon™ and I'm guessing that if I hold out, I might be able to get a G5 PowerBook, I don't know if I need that much power now, but I plan on keeping this machine for awhile.

    Sorry for the long post, and thank you all very much for all your assistance! :D
     
  2. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #2
    How about an iBook plus eMac? You'd have the advantage of more screen real estate, plus a desktop workstation that's faster than an a 12-incher, all for less money than a PowerBook plus external display. You could use the money you save to max out the RAM on both machines. The only downside would be that you couldn't span across two monitors--your two computers would have to work separately.
     
  3. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #3
    Hmmm, that's sounds like a intriguing idea...

    Takes a little more desk space, and reduces my on-the-road capacity further. Also the one computer a year issue, although since my dad and older brother are also both in education, maybe they could buy one of them for me.

    I guess it'll come down to if the new monitor updates and PowerBook updates are really good, and if the eMac gets the boost anytime soon. I like the cheap SuperDrive idea of the eMac though like hella!!

    Another question I forgot... How do I go about selling my current PowerBook for a decent price?
     
  4. Cypher3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2004
    #4
    I have a trade that might interest you. I have a 12" iBook G4 800 MHz 640 Mb Ram, Airport Extreme, Combo drive and Radeon 9200 32 Mb. And I also have a desktop PC that you would be able to use for the high end gaming and programming.The PC is a Dell 8250 P4 2.53 GHz, 512 RDRAM (RAMBUS), 60 GB 7200 RP HD, ATI 9000 128 MB video card, Windows XP OS. I'm also trading my 17" micron monitor with all of this. So let me know. I have pics also. Everything comes with cables,manuals, etc. If you have any detailed questions about anything or want pics, e-mail me at Cyphasoundz3@aol.com
     
  5. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #5
    The only problem is that I need to be able to reasonably run FCP 3, and I don't think that the iBook would really allow me to do that.

    Also, me owning a Windows box? *gasp* I never thought I'd go THAT far! :D

    Thanks for the offer though, and I'll keep it in mind.
     
  6. Cypher3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2004
    #6
    I actually run FCP 4 no problem on my iBook. And im sure many others do to. ;)
     
  7. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #7
    What type of optical drive does the Dell have? I really like the idea of having a SuperDrive, and am upset that I didn't get it in my current book. If it is a DVD-burner, is there anyway even theoretically that I could get iDVD to work, or is there a Windows equivalent (free, and **** easy)?
     
  8. Cypher3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2004
    #8
    My dell has a 48x CDRW. You can buy a DVD/RW from newegg.com for $101, Or if you want i could buy it and put it in for you. The Write Speed: 8X DVD+R, 4X DVD+RW, 4X DVD-R, 2X DVD-RW, 40X CD-R, 24X CD-RWRead Speed: 40X CD-ROM, 12X DVD-ROM compare to the superdrive: The SuperDrive reads DVDs at 8x, writes to DVD-R at 2x, reads CDs at 24x, writes to CD-R at 16x, and writes to CD-RW at 4x.The DVD/RW from new egg writes 4x as fast as the superdrive, so you would actually be better off. I would give you my iBook plus my Dell and monitor and $100 dollars so you could order a DVD/RW from new egg. As for software, my friend had purchased a similar DVD/RW drive and it came with DVD burning software.
    Here is the link to the DVD/RW drive at newegg.com http://www.newegg.com/app/viewProductDesc.asp?description=27-106-923&depa=1
     
  9. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #9
    egad! This is almost too good to pass up! How immediate do you need the trade to be? I certainly NEED my PowerBook through the end of June, but would really like to make the trade by the middle of August. Where do you live, because I can only imagine that shipping costs could get really high, really fast. The PowerBook is still in excellent condition. I've been using a screen sleeve whenever I carry it, so that the screen has no key marks whatsoever. Also, can you give me a little more information on the micron monitor?
     
  10. Cypher3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2004
    #10
    Well, the sooner the trade the better, but im willing to wait. I dont see why you cant use the iBook I would give you in place fo your PowerBook. Anyway, I live in NJ, but dont worry about shipping prices because i will pay for everything i ship and all you would have to pay for would be shipping of just the powerbook which shouldnt be that much. The micron monitor is a regular CRT monitor, 17" and white. Im not sure of the max resolution, I've always had it at 1024x768. If you have any specific questions about the monitor, I'll find out for you.
     
  11. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #11
    I need to keep my book through June because I am doing the Missouri Boys State yearbook video on it, and absolutely need every single ounce of power it can deliver, but after that the projects are more personal (friends and family related) and so I won't need as much power, and the added portability would be a definite plus as one is a trip to Florida. I'm also scared because I don't see your motivation to trade, and am slightly worried I might be walking into a very deep pit here. Nothing against you obviously, it's just healthy to be a bit wary about trading a few thousand dollars worth of my technology over the internet.

    If you give me a model number on the monitor, I don't mind doing the research myself. Also, do you have the standard 30GB HD in the iBook?
     
  12. alxths macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #12
    Stoid, consider how fast you can run fcp on your pb, then imagine reducing the MHz by 36% AND the L2 cache being cut in half. You might want to look for some benchmarks of fcp running on ibooks...
     
  13. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #13
    I was rendering earlier today, and I noticed that even having the processor reduced, the HD couldn't keep up with it. Honestly, that's fast enough for me. Besides, that suck gets HOT! Maybe I'll have to wait to get it hooked up with an external fast HD so that I can really appreciate how fast my laptop really is.
     
  14. alxths macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #14
    Yeah, they say that for any sort of video/audio editing an external 7200 rpm drive is a must.
     
  15. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030

    johnnyjibbs

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2003
    Location:
    London, UK
    #15
    Back to the original question, I have one of the current 1GHz 12" PBs and they are really nice. They run Final Cut Express very well so I can't imagine FC Pro would be any different, especially as FCE1 is based on FCP3. It sounds like you'd be better off with a 12" PowerBook than an iBook because the PBs have twice the L2 cache and a more powerful processor, plus they officially support dual monitor spanning. I have the SuperDrive and I like it, although some people will swear by getting the combo and adding an external 8x burner.

    I haven't got an external monitor yet but I manage fine on my little screen, plus this machine is ultra portable. I take it everywhere. I think we will see new Apple displays by summer although I doubt there'll be PB G5s. There will be a new G4 revision though. (BTW, you can never have too much power!)

    Good luck with whatever choice you decide.
     
  16. Cypher3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2004
    #16
    I have the stock 30 GB in my iBook, and the monitor is a Micron Vx700. I also have a Samtron 76DF. So whichever youd rather have.
     
  17. Cypher3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2004
    #17
    Let me know if your still interested, so I can save everything for you.
     
  18. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #18
    After thinking about it for awhile, I realize that it's more Windows than I need, and not as much Mac as I want. I really don't need to do gaming on the Windows machine, and programming just has to work, and doesn't necessarily need to blaze. I just need a bottom of the barrel Windows machine. Sorry. :(

    On with the discussion though. Is the 17 inch Apple monitor any different than a laptop monitor?
     
  19. raptorhigh macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    #19
    wow, my friend and I both have 15 inchers that we take to class. I have never once said to myself, "This is too big."
     
  20. tiktokfx macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2003
    Location:
    DC Metropolitan Area
    #20
    I'm a "power user," and I have a 1GHz 12" PB. Absolutely love it and have no issues at all with the lack of power in relation to the portability factor. I spend most of my time on it with it hooked up to monitors either at home or at work; 17" NEC and 19" Mitsubishi tubes and so forth. Handles great.
     

Share This Page