iBook or PowerBook and Questions

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by mjstew33, Jun 14, 2005.

  1. mjstew33 macrumors 601

    mjstew33

    Joined:
    May 29, 2005
    Location:
    Illinois
    #1
    Okay... I've been wanting an iBook for the longest time. But today I went to the Online Apple Store and I can get a 12" PowerBook for an almost maxed out iBook (1.33GHz, 14", 768mbRAM, Combo, Bluetooth). I don't really need the SuperDrive, I actually have 2 on my PCs. The PowerBook would be upgraded to 768MB RAM and 100GB Hard Drive - No AppleCare - I'll get it later to save a little bit of money at checkout. The total was $1602. For the iBook that I wanted was $1607 with AppleCare and $1423 w/o AppleCare.

    Without TAX/Shipping
    PowerBook - $1602
    iBook w/o AppleCare - $1423
    iBook w/ AppleCare - $ 1607

    With TAX/ shipping -
    PowerBook - $1702 - really not that bad of a price for a PowerBook
    iBook w/o AppleCare - $1513 - Decent price
    iBook w/ AppleCare - $1701 - Kind of a lot for an iBook
    I am a student using the Educational Discounts.
    ^^^THOSE ARE WITH TAX and the free shipping! :cool:
    Which one do you think I should get?

    Any comments appreciated, thanks in advance.

    I just want to know what I am going to be saving for, and how much money I'll need, I'm really loooking at the 12" PowerBook.. What do you think?

    Does the PowerBook have higher resolution than the iBook?

    I'm going to buy AppleCare at the end of the 90 Days for the PowerBook if I buy that.

    They are all kind of in the same price range - I've got about $500 and need $1300 (BASED ON A $1700 total), I'll be able to get that this summer, because I'm motivated.

    What are your thoughts?
    I'll be using it for lots of Photoshop type work with images, DVD, iTunes, Internet, AIM(or iChat), and some video editing work.

    Which one will last me about 5 years if I take good care of it?
    ____________
    My Computers:
    HP Athlon XP 3200+, 1GB of RAM, GeForce 5500 Overclocked 128MB Graphic Card, Windows XP Home, Dual Layer 8x DVDRW w/ lots of software :D

    Compaq 2.7 Celeron (soon to be 3.2P4 w/ HT), 1.5GB RAM, Windows XP Professional, ATI 256MB Graphics Card(PCI no AGP :( ) DVD RW 8x, tons of software :)

    iPod Photo 30GB:D

    iPod 4th Generation - 20GB:)

    iMac G3 - Tray loading - 333Mhz, OS X Jaguar, 160MB RAM(Lime) - Still running strong! :p

    iMac G3 - Slot loading - 500Mhz, OS X Jaguar, 128MB RAM(Blue) - Sweet! ;)

    My first computer: Apple Quadra 630 33MHz, 4MB Ram, 1MB Graphics, NO CD, OS 7, Cost $1200!! :eek:

    PowerBook G3 Wallstreet 250MHz, 384MB RAM, OS 9.2, 4MB VRAM, 4GB HD
    - Sold on eBay :(
    PowerBook G3 Wallstreet 233MHz, 64MB RAM, OS 8.5, 4MB VRAM, 2GB
    - Just got for free!
     
  2. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #2
    The 12" PB has the same 1024x768 resolution as both the iBooks.
    (I'm an iBook user and love my iBook, but) Go for the PowerBook. It has more Power for image work and video editing and will probably last you longer.

    Get as much (3rd party) RAM you can afford and the biggest HD you can afford BTO. And AppleCare can be very valuable if you want to keep the machine for many years to come. As far as I can remember you can buy AC any time within the first year after purchase, so you can save up for a while... ;)
     
  3. tsk macrumors 6502a

    tsk

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    #3
    It's hard to figure out what you actually comparing with all your pricing because there aren't many specs listed. Personally, I would be comparing the 12" iBook with the 12" PB, not the 14" iBook.

    If I was going for a 12" PB, I'd get the SD model since it has a good amount of upgrades for $100 over the base model. The SD model is $1400 after rebate (the HD upgrade to 100GB seems kind of pricey to me and 80GB is pretty big).

    The 12" iBook model is $950 after rebate with an 80GB HD ($45 more if you add bluetooth).

    Then I'd look at adding 3rd party RAM to either of those. I know that isn't necessarily a fair comparison (one has SD, bluetooth, 512MB), but it doesn't make sense to me to look at the 14" iBook and the 12" PB.

    Now, if you plan on keeping it for 5 years, the PB makes sense. If you plan on getting rid of it in 1-2 years, I'd go iBook.
     
  4. newrivertrain macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 18, 2005
    #4
    I have an Ibook too (latest 14" w/o superdrive) and I'm really happy with it, but I think if you can afford it and don't mind losing the screen space, the powerbook would be for you.

    Here's what you'll get with the PB that the Ibook doesn't have:

    1. A way better graphics card (64meg vs. 32meg). Plus it lets you plug in another monitor and use it as a seperate "work space". Think of it as a giant monitor split up in two. Real nice if you do video-editing. The Ibook only supports another monitor that shows you what's already on your screen.
    2. An audio input! Man, it sure was cheap of Apple not to include this on the Ibook. You'll have to buy an external device that'll run you around $100.
    3. A video ouput! Another cheap move by Apple on the Ibook. You'll have to buy special cables that'll run you around $20-30. The powerbook has S-video outs.

    Then of course you have the widescreen, the scrolling touchpad, and a way better case. And a better architecture--faster processor and serial bus. Oh, and the speakers on the Ibook aren't too great. Not sure if they're better on the PB.

    But I guess it comes down to when you're going to buy. If it has to be now then you should go for the Powerbook. The Ibook is way overdue on being upgraded (check buyers guide) and there's no reason why you should be paying the same thing for a computer I bought 8 months ago. If you can wait a bit, I'd wait to see the new Ibooks. But that's a bit tricky because I think the line is all messed up right now and they're running way too close to PB's. I really don't think there will be an upgrade anytime too soon.

    But if you're going to save the money up first then you can decide later. Hope this helps a little bit.
     
  5. mellow2bits macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #5
    listen to your heart?

    Sounds to me like you want to justify the purchase of a powerbook, to yourself. I don't understand why you compare the iBook+applecare to the powerbook without applecare. If you already made up your mind but just need to rationalise your decision, and you can afford the powerbook, then buy the powerbook and stop rationalising ;).

    Actually, it is really simple: the most economical choice is always the iBook. Only if you really need the power or (one of) the additional features of the powerbook should you buy a powerbook.
    Then again: if your heart tells you to buy the powerbook and your wallet allows it, then why not buy the powerbook? It will not dissapoint you.

    When you made your decision, let us know what you bought!
     
  6. efoto macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    Location:
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    #6
    From the "lots of Photoshop" point you made I would suggest the PowerBook. The specs are not all that different but the PB will last you longer and will pull a little harder in apps like PS.

    I have a 12" PB revD and love the thing to death, best computer-related purchase I have probably ever made (also my first Mac, so that makes it the best ;) )
     
  7. emotion macrumors 68040

    emotion

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #7
    i have a rev c 12" and feel the same way about the machine. i'd buy another at the drop of a hat.

    if you're anything like me as soon as the ibook gets to you you'd just be thinking of the powerbook you could have had. :)
     
  8. Sundance Kid macrumors regular

    Sundance Kid

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #8
    ok. I have a a powerbook 15inch, latest model. From my experiences, (talking to friends etc) that is definetely the best choice for reasons such as size, way better screen, better speakers, better graphics card, way more ports (including the firewire800), and backlit keyboard which is just so bloody cool.

    But if you want to save a few bucks, please don't go with the ibook! I have one great reason: it only has a 32mb graphics card! That seriously won't last you that much longer, because all the applications are going to start needed more memory (already some things on OSX are desabled for ibook customers). So just get the Powerbook 12inch, and you will be way happier. Although i believe they are upgrading the iBook soon. Maybe you should wait?



    my two cents
     
  9. gabriel_uk macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2005
    Location:
    England
    #9
    I'm pretty confused here. The iBook DOES have video output according to this Apple webpage - http://www.apple.com/uk/ibook/specs.html

    So newrivertrain - what do you mean exactly??

    ...I've had 4 Apple laptops since '92, and bought a 15-in PowerBook in '02. Although it isn't my main Mac, and despite taking real good care of it, the keyboard and HD have both needed replacing twice - unlike any of my previous Mac laptops.

    It's for this reason that I plan to 'upgrade' to an iBook rather than a PB - although I'm a bit worried when tsk says "if you plan on keeping it for 5 years, the PB makes sense. If you plan on getting rid of it in 1-2 years, I'd go iBook."

    One thing is for sure - whatever you buy, make sure to add AppleCare! IMHO, it's essential.
     
  10. efoto macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    Location:
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    #10
    From the same site you linked, reading down into the specs:
    "Video mirroring supports VGA video out to an external display or projector (requires included Apple VGA Video Adaptor) and S-video and composite video out to a TV or VCR (requires optional Apple Video Adaptor, sold separately)."

    These are really no different than the PB, depending on which model you are looking at (12" was mentioned). On my 12" PB I have a mini-dvi port and the computer came with a mini-dvi to vga adapter and also mini-dvi to div adapter, so I can output to all computer monitors save for those with 5-BNC connections with no need for an extra adapter. To go to a tv or vcr by way of RCA or s-video I still need to purchase the Apple optional cableset or whatever they call it.

    tsk said that because the iBook becomes more of a commodity purchase (to some users) than the PowerBook. Due to the lower entry value and initial purchase price, it is easier to resell and the masses will probably take on the price of an iBook better than a PowerBook. This is not to say that you cannot keep your iBook for years to come, they don't get older any faster or wear out any faster than a PowerBook, but because they have a lower spec-set compared to the PowerBook, the technology is 'old' faster and therefore it won't 'last' as long (possibly) for cutting edge apps. Arguably if you are worried about cutting edge apps you wouldn't be looking at a portable in the first place....so really it is a matter of cost and the featureset that you personally require.

    I choose PB but there is nothing to say I might not be totally happy had I choosen to purchase an iBook. Personally, style weighed in a little and I prefer to future-proof my computer purchases the best I can. I prefer the appearance of the PB and the specs are a little higher meaning it should last just a little longer. That was my justifcation anyway :p :rolleyes:
     
  11. salmacis macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Location:
    Vienna, Europe
    #11
    Sorry, but in fact graphics card memory is only important for gaming (since games need a lot of memory for textures). OS X would run also very well on 16MB of VRAM. I read that OS X in fact only needs about 7-10 MB of VRAM on average. What is important: hardware acceleration, gpu speed, and that your card is supported by Quartz Extreme (which is true for all current models, and 16MB is enough according to Apples documentation).

    If you have the money go for a PowerBook. The better and more elegant casing, more outputs (FW 800, DVI!), better and faster display and graphics, and expansion options (max. 2GB RAM) are really worth it, if you look for a professional product.

    salmacis

    PS: If you don´t believe me regarding the VRAM, count yourself:

    For a 1024*768 display with True Color:

    1024 * 768 * 3 (3 bytes are 24 bits, true color) = 2359296 bytes = 2,25MB

    (The OS needs of course a little bit more VRAM for some nice effects).
     
  12. emotion macrumors 68040

    emotion

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #12

    such a shame that this technical stuff doesn't apply to the 12" pb.

    it has a nice case tho and portability can't be beat. :)
     
  13. salmacis macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Location:
    Vienna, Europe
    #13
    You´re right, sorry. The 12" has no FW800, but DVI as far as I remember. i Book has not. Max. RAM is 1,25GB (same as iBook). Graphic card seems to be better also.
     
  14. efoto macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    Location:
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    #14
    The 12", which the OP stated was his PB of interest, has FW400, mini-DVI, max RAM to 1.25Gb, and 64Mb vram.

    The other features are dang nice and would be awesome additions to the 12"PB, but sadly it is what it is for the time being, and probably until it becomes Intel-itized.
     
  15. gabriel_uk macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2005
    Location:
    England
    #15
    Thanks! That's really clear. :)
     
  16. efoto macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    Location:
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    #16
    Glad it helped straighten a few things out for you and clear some things up. Both are excellent machines, both will serve quite willingly and powerfully for years to come.
     
  17. mjstew33 thread starter macrumors 601

    mjstew33

    Joined:
    May 29, 2005
    Location:
    Illinois
    #17
    yep...

    you know... after reading all of these posts... i think i'm going to hold out on making any decisions... but my head is tilting towards the PowerBook. i've only got about 500-600 bucks but... I'm in Jr. High (8th Grade), but I have a lawn mowing services and eBay i'm doing this summer to earn the money...

    I need something that will last me until college :-/!

    Because by then, i'm going to want to get a brand new PowerBook...

    a $1700 price for a PB is actually pretty darn good, brand new...

    It'll probably take me until August/September to reach the money. And if no updates are out by that (likely) I'm going to wait until the Paris thing, what's that thing called again? What are the things that Apple goes to, to announce updated products/news/etc....?

    My head is completley going towards the 12" PowerBook, because of it's speed and it's durability

    That's my thoughts for right now...

    ____________
    My Computers:

    PCs
    HP Athlon XP 3200+, 1GB of RAM, GeForce 5500 Overclocked 128MB Graphic Card, Windows XP Home, Dual Layer 8x DVDRW w/ lots of software

    Compaq 2.7 Celeron (soon to be 3.2P4 w/ HT), 1.5GB RAM, Windows XP Professional, ATI 256MB Graphics Card(PCI no AGP ) DVD RW 8x, tons of software

    Tunes
    iPod Photo 30GB :D

    iPod 4th Generation - 20GB :)

    Macs
    iMac G3 - Tray loading - 333Mhz, OS X Jaguar, 160MB RAM(Lime) - Still running strong! :p

    iMac G3 - Slot loading - 500Mhz, OS X Jaguar, 128MB RAM(Blue) - Sweet! :cool:

    My first computer: Apple Quadra 630 33MHz, 4MB Ram, 1MB Graphics, NO CD, OS 7, Cost $1200!! :eek: (don't have it anymore)

    PowerBook G3 WallStreet 250MHz, 384MB RAM, OS 9.2, 4MB VRAM, 4GB HD
    - Sold on eBay :(

    iBook Clamshell (tangerine) 300MHz, OS 9.2, 96MB RAM, 3GB HD:eek:
     

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