Honest question for PPC Mac owners

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Dewroo, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. macrumors regular


    What keeps you attached to your PPC mac? I respect that you're useing the older hardware and I think it's kind of neat, to be honest. But I'm still curious as to why most of you choose to use PPC macs as your primary machines.

    My first mac was a graphite G3 iBook, and it was running tiger when i got it. By then, the intel transition was already announced, but all the products had yet to transition. It's 800x600 screen served me well but it was not my primary machine, and the screen was too small for garageband, witch was the reason I wanted a Mac in the first place.

    My next Mac was a 2006 white core 2 duo iMac, witch lasted my six years. It died because it's logic board was one of the few with defects in it's logic board. it plauged me with screen artifacts for four years before finally locking up at boot with multiple attempts to reinstall the OS failing.

    My current is a 2011 Macbook Air, but I degress.

    my expirence with PCC Macs is lacking, so what keeps you intrested in PCC?

    Is is backwards computability with older software? the design of the hardware? some performance gains with G4+ CPUs that I am unaware of?

    thanks for your replies and I look forward to hearing your answers. :)
  2. macrumors 6502a


    Several reasons for me:


    I love macs. My first mac was an iBook G3, way before the transition and was very usable. After it burned I got an iBook G4. Cheap too.


    Many say that powerpc macs are slow and crappy. True, if you get the iMac G3 200Mhz experience. If you get the same I have (1.2Ghz, 1.25 GB RAM) you'll get a pretty decent laptop. It has more power than a netbook and it has a beautiful design.

    I can use Photoshop CS3 (Editing 8.0 MP pictures), while I listen to iTunes, browse facebook and chat on facebook with no performance issues.

    -Battery Performance

    Fully loaded, my ibook G4 lasts 5 hours (without the laptop fan) I get those hours without sacrificing performance.


    iBook G4 is just beautiful. Not only that, used iBooks are in better shape than used Intel laptops.


    12" is just perfect for traveling. I travel around the country and it just adjust to my baggage needs.


    I do all my work here. Design HTML templates, full websites, website applications, and write technical articles. I use it all the time except when I have to do my ASP work, which requires a Windows computer.
  3. macrumors 68000


    For no specific reason other than I love it. And for it being different from the current apple crowd.
  4. macrumors G3


    Speaking only for myself:

    1. Price. I have two 17" PowerBook G4s. I paid no more than $252 for the most expensive one. The cheapest PowerBook G4 I have bought to date was $25.

    2. Quality. Your experience may have been different, but in the last 13 years I have only had one Mac between the many I have or use at home or work have a logicboard failure. Right now at work (I work for newspaper) my coworker uses a 12 year old G4 to build ads. It's slow, but it's doing production work on a daily basis. From all that I've seen, the build quality of the Intel Macs is inferior to that of PowerPC based Macs.

    3.Personality. If you use these machines for any length of time on a daily basis you can start to see a character. Whether by design or accident there is just "something" about these machines that the Intel Macs don't have. They may be old, they may be underpowered for some of today's tasks but these machines have character. When you can carry around a PowerPC laptop that is six or more years old and still get compliments or questions it says something about the design of these machines.
  5. macrumors member

    Not to be less than compassionate or anything, but I have a Ram maxed G4 tower upstairs and a G4 iBook my wife uses for correspondence and what else would you do with it if you didn't use it? Place it on the floor to keep the wind from closing the front door or give it to a homeless shelter. It's a shame that a $2500 investment that seems like yesterday is bordering on useless: sad but true. :( I miss the little smiley face in the square monitor frame during boot-up.
    But not the frown!
  6. macrumors 6502


    Funny, but since the storm hit here, I've carrying my iBook to coffee shops, restaurants and libraries. Very often people have asked me about it: price, specs and comments about how new it looks.

    In my experience, Apple has long been the leader in laptop design. I've owned the 520c, Kanga, Main and Wall Streets, and the Lombard. Loved every one of 'em. In that time, and because I needed Windows for work, I also had a WinBook and Compaq laptop for work. Was always happy to get back to my Mac.

    The Kanga was a beast, and the Wall Street/Lombard were both beautiful and powerful.
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Because I like the look, it is reliable, runs my legacy software, energy-efficient cpu, quiet, can dual-boot (OS 9 and OS X) and to be different. I use a quad-core Intel Mac Pro at work, nice unit, older OS (10.5.8) but it lacks that difference between a PC and Mac. I have used PowerPCs since the 6100/60 days and always thought they were superior to the Intel Pentium line till they hit a wall at crossing over the 3GHz threshold.

    Right now I'm using my eMac 1.25GHz, B/W G3 1.1GHz, a dual 867MHz G4 and a 450MHz G4 as folding machines. They all run 24/7 without screensaver or sleeping.

    So to answer your question, they just work. I don't need the latest hardware and software for home use. I can do what I want just fine with these old computers.
  8. macrumors G3


    I'm a regular at my local Starbucks. I've had at least one barista that was curious about my PowerBooks and I know it makes people curious when I pull more than one 17" laptop out of my bag.

    The other thing too is that the design is timeless. I can open the lid on my PowerBook and my son on his Titanium PowerBook and amongst a room full of MBPs and MacBooks our machines look current or better.

    OTOH you can pretty much guess the year of a PC laptop when someone pulls it out of their bag.
  9. Guest

    I prefer a desktop at home and this one still does everything I need, anything that does take a long time (eg. video encoding) I am happy to leave overnight - it's no biggie to me and does not justify forking out $,000's for a replacement.

    Though I have some games on there I have a PS3 for that, for time critical (ie. work) I have my MBP i7 - At home it's leisure which is web browsing, personal email, photo libraries, forum catchups, skype back home etc. I don't need a MacPro for any of these so all the time it's useful I'll be keeping it. However once the lack of updated software starts to become an issue (eg. lets say the skype version is no longer compatible) then I will have to switch, I am keeping an eye on Linux (MintPPC specifically) but until they gain Skype support I can't switch.

    No CPU loyalty at all, IBM's a large faceless corporate entity just the same as Intel and AMD - it's not about CPU it's just about usefulness and in any case I'd much prefer an old beautifully designed PM G5 over a faceless or lairy plastic PC desktop any day - so long as it is not at the expense of usefulness! ;)
  10. GermanyChris, Nov 8, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2012

    macrumors 601


    They were epitome of Apple Computer Company and not AAPL. Think different actually applied.
  11. macrumors 68040



    I use my Powerbook all the time. My iPad is useless next to the Powerbook, plus the screen real estate on a 15" is perfect.
  12. macrumors 6502

    Because I want a Apple computer, not a PC. As others have said the build on these iBooks and Powerbooks are amazing, nothing really comes close. PPC cpu is the epitome of great CPU design too.
  13. macrumors 68000

    tom vilsack

    I love to take things apart (cars,computers,you name it) i don't feel so bad ripping into a $50 ibook just in case i screw something up....guess it's also the fact of being just a little different from every other computer out there.
  14. Guest

    To be fair I'd have to disagree on that, Powerbooks are prone to separating at the seams - they are well made machines for sure but I believe the newer Apple laptops are more robust - My MBP for example is pretty much a solid lump of metal with no seam except for the bottom plate - out of the Powerbook, MB and this one it's by far the most solid and despite heavy use and a huge amount of travel (international) after a good wipe down it looks like it could be straight from the Apple shop. But certainly for the time the PB was one of the very best made laptops around.
  15. macrumors 65816

    Because I want a real Mac, simple. I have an Intel Mac, but it just doesn't feel like a real Mac, that is not a placebo either. The essence of Mac is the PPC processor and unless you've owned PPC Macs for the length that Apple produced them you just wont get what a Mac is. There is something very missing from the Intel Macs as nice as they are and as much as I understand why Apple made the shift.
  16. macrumors 604

    Jessica Lares

    I'll tell you a quick backstory: My dad used to set up computers in the school he worked at in the late 70's - late 80's (he was a janitor), they had the Apple II and I think other various Apple machines. Now he's a server guy (don't get it, he can't even navigate the Start Menu :rolleyes:) and head of maintenance at another school (the one I graduated from). The policy at these places is that if something is left behind, like in a closet, it's pretty much okay for you to take. They can't hunt people down to give them their machines back, same thing goes for people leaving machines that the school bought them. If computers are being replaced, it's pretty much the same thing. Chunk it, or take it home. You can't sell them because you can't guarantee that they won't fail with all the usage by students, and plus they're pretty old by that time.

    I have had about 50-100 different PCs in the last two decades. ThinkPads, Compaq, HP, DELL Latitudes/Inspiron, Gateways, Toshiba, Sony, IBM, things running DOS, Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows NT, Windows 98, etc, etc. Anything past Windows 3.1, and it was most likely the machine had hardware problems. We have had at least five ThinkPads that you would pick up from the table, and they'd freeze.

    The Apples I got... Apple IIe (the platinum one - my first computer even), a PowerBook 180c (which we lent to a friend who took it to university and back - was found in a closet and didn't get claimed), iMac G3, Power Mac G3 Desktop, iMac G4, and Power Mac G5, were all in great condition when I got them. I don't have the IIe anymore (got rid of it a year later because computers were being pushed in and out of this house), but even after the 180c got fried in the garage during our house move, it still looks great.

    So why do I still use the Power Mac G5 and iMac G4? Because they are perfectly capable machines and they are pretty much brand new machines that have been sitting dormant for the most part. The G5 sat in a room with a few other Power Macs and they were all used for Photoshop and Final Cut Pro. Otherwise they weren't very loved. The G4 was brought in by a student who used it for video editing and photoshop and left it there after he graduated (don't ask me why, I have no idea, haha). They work great, look great, and we're very happy with them. Security? We have never had any malware in our machines the whole two decades we've had internet access, so it's not something we worry about. People in this house prefer using their iPhones for banking anyway.

    I feel like I'm doing something right by using and upgrading the G5 anyway since I know the teacher who bought it. It's the thrill of being able to go, "Hey! Remember those Macs you used to have in your classroom? I took one home and made some cool upgrades! It still works great."

    EDIT: And whooo, I just moved up to 68000! :D
  17. macrumors 68020

    Jethryn Freyman

    Well... the main reason is because I had about $200 to spare for a computer, and I found this G5 tower on eBay for $160. Since then, over about 16 months, it's taken in another $600 or so of upgrades. Performance is great when things are optimized for it, and it still does a good enough job with anything else.

    Well, I have and use many :))), but I guess they're just rock solid reliable, at least, the G3 and G4 ones were, and I'll say the same for any G5 that is working fine now.

    The original Macbook Pros looked exactly the same as the Powerbooks they were replaced... they were great, fast, easy to upgrade.

    I don't know, I just don't know enough on the hardware side, but the fact is that current Intel Core processors totally and utterly crush even the highest clocked G5s as far are CPU power goes.
  18. Quu
    macrumors 68000


    It's funny people keep talking about this amazing build quality but I had to send my iBook G4 to Apple three times. The first time was due to a logic board failure caused by I believe the ATi GPU (9200m).

    After they did that and sent the iBook back to me the Airport card didn't work. So off it went again.

    3rd time it came back the case wasn't closed properly and some metal shielding from the bottom left of the notebook was basically hanging outside of the plastic casing.

    And this was all within a 2 month period. If that wasn't bad enough my iBook G4 wasn't even involved in the logic board replacement program Apple had started a while earlier for the G3 iBooks. That was a pretty large recall. Then they had the battery recall for the powerbooks.

    I mean come on guys, PowerPC wasn't built better, it wasn't even built differently. Who remembers the PowerMac G5 water cooling leakage issue? Or the Titanium G4's broken hinge problem?

    I mean really I could go on. Now I'm not saying the PowerPC macs were rubbish because they weren't I loved my iBook and my Powerbook but these products had issues just like the Intel macs have.
  19. Guest

    Actually now I come to think about it my PB 1.67 had a faulty headphone socket out of the box, didn't bother with it as I never used headphones or external speakers with it anyway... Having said that our company has a ton of issues (hinges, screens etc) with various premium Windows laptops (HP/Lenovo etc) but most definately less with macs. Especially the new ones.
  20. macrumors 604

    Jessica Lares

    THANK YOU! I am glad I'm not the only one who had this issue. This is the sole reason why I'm glad they don't do repairs anymore at the Genius Bar. I took my Late 2006 MacBook Pro in, and when I got it back, the top case wasn't set all the way back in. I took it back in, and they basically said there was nothing wrong with it.

    A year or so later, I start hearing rattling, and then one of my fans went crazy. Opened it up, shook it around, and broken casing fell out. Pretty much what destroyed my machine.
  21. macrumors 65816

    All computers have issues, that's a given. What's not a given is the boot up, the happy mac, or sad mac for that matter and the way a PPC CPU operates. Intel on the other hand feels completely soulless. I use OS X now for the OS not for the machine its running on, the machine it's running on is not a Mac, it could be any beige box.
  22. Quu
    macrumors 68000


    I think what you really want is a piece of fine art to hang on your wall. :D
  23. macrumors 65816

    I have a perfectly fine piece of art called a G5 Xserve and it can hang from a rack... Art is always what you make of it, that's the beauty of interpretation. It's completely functional as well.
  24. macrumors G3


    I have to disagree. Sure, there were issues, but overall the quality was excellent. How many 12 to 13 year old PCs are out there still being used in business today?

    And I'll just say in regard to the hinge issue on Titaniums. I have the original TiBook 400. I gave up after the second logicboard, but it lasted until this year. In my experience the case broke around the hinges. Those hinges have been the strongest part of that PowerBook and are still being used with my son's PowerBook (I swapped screens).

    My work G5 is a 1.8Ghz single cpu. I've heard lots and lots of stories of how this was a bad machine and prone to logicboard failures, bad parts etc.

    But this G5 has been on 24/7 since my boss bought it in Feb 2005 and it has performed flawlessly every day. I had one issue with it ONCE and all it was was a bad ram stick.

    Maybe it's just me, but my experiences with Macs that are reported to have X problems have mostly been the complete opposite.
  25. Quu
    macrumors 68000


    Ya it's just you. Remember Intel Macs only been out 6 years. My original 17" MacBook Pro bought in June 2006, Still going strong. No issues.

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