Graphics Student... 17" powerbook or G5 tower

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by matt1190, Oct 26, 2005.

  1. matt1190 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    #1
    So I'm kinda stuck right now. I know I'm going to be buying an Apple very soon but I need an outside opinion. I'm a Graphic Design student primarily working with Adobe CS products, and light AfterEffects useage.

    I've narrowed it down between a new 17" Powerbook or new dual 2.3 G5 tower and 20" display. An upgrade in memory will happen with either decision.
    I'd like to have something portable since I do a lot of running around. But then again, I love screen size and have a habit of being creative/productive in one place for hours at a time. Perhaps a laptop might change this?? It'd be nice to be able to present designs and projects to professors/clients... anywhere. I've never owned a laptop. Will I possibly be enlightened to some miraculous state of being upon owning one?

    single 1.67ghz vs dual 2.3ghz
    120gb hd vs 250gb hd
    portable, kinda limited vs solid, wont be out dated for awhile
    ATI 9700 -128MB DDR vs NVIDIA 6600 -256MB GDDR SDRAM
    sick as hell vs sick as hell
    $2300 vs $3000

    I have been struggling with this for the last two weeks! What do you guys think? All input is much appreciated!!

    -Matt
     
  2. jer2eydevil88 macrumors regular

    jer2eydevil88

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2004
    Location:
    USA
    #2
    If you need this machine for 2 - 3 years in production with today's software you should look at the dual cpu rig.

    If you need portability more and don't mind that the current powerbooks will be VERY dated looking when the Intel lineup comes out then go with a powerbook.

    The 17" powerbook is far from a very portable notebook though and its more of a desktop replacement machine due to the size of the beast.

    All in all both can truley handle your tasks the g5 will obviously do a better job at this time but you lose the mobility.


    A simpler solution might be a $1299 imac and a $999 ibook giving you both creative productivity on the go and a solid workstation for you to have at home.
     
  3. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #3
    I have a laptop and a desktop. There are pros and cons either way you go.

    With a laptop you have portability, and it will be reasonably fast.

    If you go desktop you won't have portability. But it will be drastically faster. Screen size will be the same pixel for pixel, but you can always get a bigger monitor down the road, and your graphics card will be better in a desktop. Finally, a desktop is much more upgradable.

    I personally, love my desktop, and am more then happy to sacrifice portability for screen size and raw power.

    Also, if you are a student get ADC. It cost $100, you get Tiger for free, plus a t-shirt and some other free things. Oh, and the main reason; you'll save around double of simply the student discount.

    Example, the 17" PB is $1999 with ADC, and the 2.3 with 20" is $2,718.
     
  4. joepunk macrumors 68030

    joepunk

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2004
    Location:
    a profane existence
    #4
    I would say that a G5 Tower is your best bet in the Graphics area and maybe you could purchase an older model iBook for quick/on-the-go travel.

    I use a PB as my main machine for my Graphics classes. The Art Department just got new PM and put the very old G3 B/W out to rest somewhere (I really hope they have a nice home). I also needed it for portability during breaks. And a laptop works great since I live off campus and my old apartment only had one phone plug-in between 4 roommates.

    What kinds of computers does your Art department have for it's Graphic Design program?

    The Powermac is the best choice IMHO.
     
  5. generik macrumors 601

    generik

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2005
    Location:
    Minitrue
    #5
    I think a dual core 2.0 will more than handle your needs.. :D
     
  6. p0intblank macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #6
    I too am a graphic design major and love it. I have a PowerBook G4 (refer to sig for specs) and am definitely need of more power. I am adding 1 GB of RAM pretty soon, because I need it badly when it comes working with large files in Photoshop and Illustrator. My PowerBook is a very nice machine, but I need a lot more power, which is why I am getting a Power Mac Quad soon. Here are two options that I think are good to choose from:

    1. Buy the PowerBook G4 and the Apple Cinema Display 20-inch, that way you can still work on the go, but have more workspace when at your desk. I don't know if you are a fan of that, though... so onto option #2.

    2. Get a dual-core Power Mac (dual 2.3 in your case) and the Apple Cinema Display 20-inch for the ultimate setup. The PowerBook is an excellent notebook, but it doesn't compare to the power of the Power Mac when it comes to handling large files. And having a dual-core config will help things tremendously, not to mention much better expandability. You can keep adding as much RAM as you want, whereas with the PowerBook you are limited to 2 GB of RAM (I may be mistaken, 4 GB might be the limit now with the new configs).

    The Power Macs are such nice machines, so that is what I would go with. I say go for the Power Mac + ACD 20-inch setup and get a notebook when the Mactel's are introduced, or when the Rev. Bs make their way around.
     
  7. cruxed macrumors regular

    cruxed

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #7
    Sorry to hi-jack this thread, but I am planning to but a Dual-Core Powermac right now.

    The two models I am deciding between is the 2ghz and the 2.3ghz models. If I get the 2ghz, I will be upping the video card to 256vRam. Is the extra cost for the 0.3ghz (and 90gb more storage) worth the extra fee I have to pay for it?

    Thanks for your suggestions...

    Boris
     
  8. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    The City of Culture, Englandshire
    #8
    That was going to be my suggestion, too. The 17" certainly may be impressive screenwise, but might not be the best choice if you want to go lugging it around campus all day. The difference in price between the 15 and 17 inchers would allow you to get the display for extra screen space in your room, and maybe up the RAM a bit too. I don't know if you're studying away from home or not, but if you are then it's also worth noting it's going to be a lot easier to take your laptop home with you at holiday time.

    Mind you, joepunk's suggestion is a good one – I've got a Power Mac myself but I recently acquired an old G3 iBook. While the iBook isn't powerful enough to do any really heavy graphics work it's still useful to have it as a backup machine and a portable option.

    Hmm... food for thought there.
     
  9. matt1190 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    #9
    Okay, so with ADC... I can sign up for $100 and get a one time discount on a purchase of Apple Hardware. If I go through with that, will it show up instantly on my 'account'? Or am I better off just walking into the Apple Store in a couple days and doing this all at once?

    Thanks for all the advice guys!! This helping me out tremendously!
     
  10. Skareb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2005
    Location:
    Adelaide
    #10
    I think you'll find the ADC is the "Apple display connector"

    ~1999 to 2004? was an all in one graphics connector (power, USB, greaphics...) only problem was that is was apple only so apple couldn't flog its screens to anybody else. also ment you needed an apple screen for your PM/cube...

    as such the standard died
     
  11. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #11
    Umm, I called Apple. I had to fax in a photo ID, and school records to prove I was a student. Then I ordered online.

    ADC = Apple Developer Connection.
     
  12. Skareb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2005
    Location:
    Adelaide
    #12
    but more or less that same thing, it's a superceeded grahpics standard
     
  13. Chaszmyr macrumors 601

    Chaszmyr

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2002
    #13
    ADC stands for both Apple Developer Connection and Apple Display Connector. It's confusing to have two different ADCs, but they mean very different things.
     
  14. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #14
    Yes it is. The ADC I was referring to is a super cool student discount package from Apple.
     
  15. chaosbunny macrumors 68000

    chaosbunny

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2005
    Location:
    down to earth, far away from any clouds
    #15
    Sorry to say that but if the powerbook is not enough for your needs as grapphic design student you are doing something seriously wrong. I've been working as a freelance graphic designer illustrator now for a couple of years and you do not need the best G5 Tower for this kind of work. If you are doing video editing too it's a different thing but for photoshop/illustrator work the 1.67 ghz G4 is more than enough. If you look around in design agencies many still work with 0.8 - 1 ghz Dual G4s. Some even still work with OS9. These are the machines the pretty adds are done with. The powerbook slowly starts to struggle with files bigger than 100-200 mb. Maybe 1-2 times a year I work with a file bigger than 200 mb. Of course it depends in which field of graphic design you are working, but don't tell me you need a quad G5 for graphic design studies. If you want that machine and have the money go ahead and buy it, have fun and I'm sure you will be happy. But wanting and needing are different things. Sorry for the little rant... Maybe I've wrote more than I should but I just wanted to post my opinion.

    To the op my suggestion would be the powerbook. You will be much more flexible. It will also provide you with a wider possibility doing some work in design agencies during holidays. Of course agencies love it when you can bring your own computer along when working for them. It's all about saving costs. Plus like you suggested you will be able to present things to teachers/clients with it, which imo is much better than on paper. With the powerbook you can change things immediately. And I'm sure the powerbook will last you at least 3 years. Advertising agencies will be the last to get mactels. It will be a long time until the mactels are standart in the design world since agencies depend on hardware that has been proven as fault free as possible. You don't want a computer to crash when there is a presentation tomorrow for a campaign worth a couple of 10000 $.

    Just my 2 cents, hope they help. Whatever you choose I wish you best luck.;)
     
  16. Skareb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2005
    Location:
    Adelaide
    #16
    Fair call
     
  17. ipacmm macrumors 65816

    ipacmm

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Cincinnati, OH
    #17
    Yes it is. I can't believe how cheap it is to join the program with all you get from it.
     
  18. cruxed macrumors regular

    cruxed

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    Aug 28, 2005
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #18
    Care to provide a link to this so-called ADC site?
     
  19. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #19

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