15" Powerbook+20'' LCD or just a 17" Powerbook??

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by starcrossed, May 24, 2004.

  1. starcrossed macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Location:
    San Antonio,TX
    #1
    I was looking to see if anyone can provide me any advice on a upcoming purchase I am looking to make. I had been thinking for a while on buying a new 15" Powerbook and a 20" Apple LCD Display to replace my 15" iMac 800mhz G4. I wanted to Powerbook for portability and the Display for the bigger screen and to still make use of my nice desk. But now I was thinking, maybe I should just get the 17'' Powerbook and buy a nice stand for it for my desk, and save the extra thousand on would have spent on a display. My biggest drawback on the 17'' is that it just looks really big to lug around. I wish I knew someone who had one so I could see how big it really is on my lap, and to carry around, but I unfortunatly don't. So I kinda in a bind right now on what purchase to make, cause once I pay, thats it, I'll be stuck with my decision for a at least 2 years. I could even maybe afford the 17" plus a 20" Monitor but, hopefully someone could provide me insight that would help me in my decision since this will be my first Apple laptop purchase.
     
  2. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #2
    displays are due to get a major revamp, so hold your horses... but why not buying the 15" powerbook now and a bigger display when they are released? if you are coming from 15" imac, you would get a bigger screen with only the 15" powerbook, in terms of pixels. plus, powerbooks are widescreen which the little imac isn't, so there's effectively much more space to be used actively.

    17" is nice desktop replacement, sure, but if you are planning on upgrading your hardware every two years, you'd save plenty with a big external display and a smaller one on a laptop. even 12" has the same resolution as the 15" imac (if i remember correctly, isn't it a standard 1024x768?) so even the smallest powerbook would be fine if you plan on buying the ext display.

    however, since i have had a tibook and now a 15" albook, i must say this screen size is just perfect for a laptop. and i don't usually NEED bigger display even with protools, because this is wide enough. of course, display is never too big, but if you have to have a portable machine, then the 17" is too much. it's not for someone who needs to take the laptop with you every day.
     
  3. starcrossed thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Location:
    San Antonio,TX
    #3
    Thanks for the reply. The reason I don't want to go smaller than the 15" is because I use Final Cut Pro quite often so I want a nice size screen, but the 17'' looks a little big to carry. I think I will take your advice and hold off on the screen till after WWDC to see what, if anything comes out. I was thinking about also holding off on the PowerBook until after WWDC, but my hunch is telling me Apple won't introduce PowerBook G5s then, and definitly not faster PowerBook G4s since they were just updated. I think the other factors of the G5 chips still running hot, and with Jobs already talking about Tiger and most likely new PowerMac G5s he might not have the time to speak of G5 Powerbooks during the Keynote, and that would be the type of platform to make the annoucement rather than just a little press release.
     
  4. yoda13 macrumors 65816

    yoda13

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2003
    Location:
    Texas
    #4
    go with the 15" It is easier to carry around than the 17" and then you can have even more real estate at home for working on the FCP projects ;)
     
  5. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #5
    i have friends who do fcp extensively with a 12" powerbook, and if you're going to eventually buy an external display for your desktop (where i suppose most of the editing takes place) the 12" would maybe be more convenient for mobility.

    but i'm a fan of widescreen displays, so i can strongly recommend the 15" :)
     
  6. dork macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    #6
    Get a flat panel and a powerbook

    Whatever machine you buy, you should also get either a monitor, or an outboard USB keyboard, because there is no way to have proper ergonomics using a lap top alone - either you are craning your neck down at the scree, or lifting your arms up to type. Either way, it's bad for your body.
     
  7. dbirider macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Location:
    CA
    #7
    Everybody makes it sound like the 17" is some huge beast to carry around. it really is only two inches wider. Measure the difference out on a ruler and you will really notice that it isnt that much difference to carry. and the widescreen and little bit of extra screen area is nice. Working with a 17" widescreen along with a 20" widescreen external as a dual moniter setup would be awesome for editing.


    Now if they made 23" widescreen laptops, that would be overboard.
     
  8. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #8
    measuring inches is one thing and putting a piece of hardware on your lap is another. i can tell you that this 15" albook is only one centimeter wider than my previous 15" tibook, and the difference is HUGE when the laptop is ketp on lap. one more centimeter and it would be uncomfortable as it would not keep stable. the tibook was far better on lap than this albook, and i can surely say the 17" needs to be used on the table surface. been there, done that, 17" is not so portable. even this current 15" is on the limit and the next form factor 15-incher needs to be smaller. period. anything wider than 15" albook is too big.
     
  9. Grokgod macrumors 6502a

    Grokgod

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    Feb 26, 2002
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    Deep within the heart of madness!
    #9
    I think that the most important quality is that an external LCD like the widescreen cinema displays are very important because they have a
    better contrast ratio and NITS!

    Very important for graphics works etc.

    That is the major reason to get a 15" and an external LCD!
    Its the best of all worlds!

    And yes one centimeter is HUGE, look at airplane mechanics! :p)

    The Alu feels Thick compared to the Ti but its obviously faster so that makes it better in some ways because work flow is increased.
    And if you are using it mostly with an external monitor then its size is of little consequence.
     
  10. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #10
    um... ok. :rolleyes:

    regarding the original question, I'd say get a 15" and use that until new displays are released, at which time you can add a nice new 20". The 17" really doesn't have any advantages over the 15" except for size, and that becomes a disadvantage when you are carrying it. So get the best of both worlds - more portability and even more screen space. Assuming you can afford it, of course - saving $1000 is nothing to sneeze at!
     
  11. furrina macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Location:
    In tha 212
    #11
    15 PB + Cinema Display

    I finally bit the bullet (sticker shock!) and bought a 15" 1.5 PB 1GB ram/5400HD + 20" Cinema LCD display to replace my G3 pismo. I do some video editing with FCP and am planning to do a lot more, in addition to ordinary stuff. I was tearing my hair out over whether to go for a G5 dual 1.8 or get the PB, and I feel I made a reasonable compromise: I do appreciate the mobility, and since I'm not doing fulll time paid heavy rendering, this machine is powerful enough for the video, and I've had good luck with buying the last rev. of mac stuff, they seem to have a lot under the hood and "wish list' items of all the other revs. :)
    Has anyone hit a wall with FCP on the Powerbook?

    I got the display because since it's a laptop I'd like the extra real estate ( i can run it in clamshell mode w/wireless kbd + mouse or as dual screen), But more importantly I do plan to get a G5 desktop but want to wait til after WWDC as the price may drop on the model I would get or some brand-new architecture or standard might be introduced. So when I do get the G5 PM, I'll already have the display and won't have to worry about that cost.

    As far as new displays introduced at WWDC, yes it freaks me out but whatever, as whatever they introduce probably won't ship for another 3 months and I have the cash now, and i find the 20" cinema display to be pretty darn nice, (though insanely expensive).

    So all in all I found the 15" PB + 20" display to be the ideal combo, until I feel justified to require the power of the G5 PM, which may be a few bucks cheaper by then.
     
  12. Bhennies macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    NYC & Baltimore
    #12
    That's what I'm doing. I second that! The external LCD's have much better screen contrast, color, etc., not to mention evenness in lighting. My powerbook screen, while nice, slightly varies in brightness at the corners.
     

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