Cheapest iChat AV Box

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by stoid, Nov 22, 2004.

  1. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #1
    My girlfriend is graduating at the end of this semester, which will add considerable distance to our relationship. In order to help communication, I am thinking about buying her a iChat AV capable computer and a pair of iSights. All she needs it for is iChat, E-mail, word processing and web browsing, so iChat should be the heaviest. Seeing as I'm about to run out of my life savings and have to start taking out college loans, I'd like to spend as little as possible on this set-up. A laptop would be preferable, though I'm certain that will drive the price up rather quickly. Ideally, I'd like to be able to get a computer and two iSights (edu discount $129) for $500-550. Thanks all!
     
  2. munkle macrumors 68030

    munkle

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2004
    Location:
    On a jet plane
    #2
    Anything from 600MHz G3 or higher for standard quality video conferencing...but don't forget that Tiger is coming out with the new H.264/AVC codec, which is meant to be of considerable higher quality.

    You're on a rather tight budget...maybe spend a little more and go for an iBook - justify it by thinking of all the money you'll be saving instead of making long distance phone calls.

    I travel a lot for work and iChat is a godsend for keeping in touch with loved ones.
     

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  3. sigamy macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    NJ USA
    #3
    That is a tight budget for the computer and 2 iSights. To stay within budget you'd have to find one of the last G3 iMacs. The Snow came in 600mhz and maybe 700mhz. But check the video card for compatibility with iChat.

    I've seen a bunch of 700mhz G3 iBooks on eBay with a BuyItNow price of $600. That is a bit over your price range but a more modern machine, and it is a laptop. Just be careful because the G3 ibooks have logic board issues.

    If she has the space you may want to consider a refurbished eMac from Apple's online store. You can get a CD-ROM verison for $550 or a combo drive for $649. But again, you are over your budget and you haven't even got the cameras yet.

    Good luck. Check eBay but make sure you get a reliable seller.
     
  4. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #4
    Has Apple listed requirements for Tiger iChat? Are they going to be steeper that Jaguar iChat? I don't want to get it all setup only to have her obsoleted in a few months, since I plan to upgrade so that I can do three-way chats with family at home and brother overseas at the same time. Maybe I should rethink the plan, or get another job to pay for it. :eek:
     
  5. jared_kipe macrumors 68030

    jared_kipe

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Location:
    Seattle
    #5
    I did this with my girlfriend. I got an emac from a fire sale 800MHz CD-ROM, for about $550, and on the apple special deals you will find a 1GHz CD-ROM for the same price now. I over clocked it to 1.27GHz and added a cd burner and more ram. She just adores it, and it is by far the cheapest apple for the money. I see 400MHz G4 Powermacs for a few hundred dollars that are no where near as advanced.

    BTW her .8 booted at 1.4GHz, but wasn't stable after 30 min of tiger woods. I would think a 1.0 would probably be stable there, and it runs 133 SDRAM which is very cheap and plentiful on ebay.
     

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