Possible Switcher (new iBooks)

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by dr_fate, Oct 23, 2003.

  1. dr_fate macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Hello. Let me just preface this post by warning you if I seem a little incoherant its due to lack of sleep, but I wanted to post before I went beddy byes so I could see all your replies when I wake up. ;)

    I've been planning on switching to a mac for the last month or so, or at least researching more into them after experiencing another excruciating re-install of a messed up windows. I was also thinking of going portable this time and it seems I've stumbled across a perfect opportunity what with the new iBooks just announced and all.

    I was looking at this system config:
    14 inch ibook
    640 mb ddr266 ram
    40 gb hd
    combo drive
    no airport extreme
    no bluetooth

    for $1,449.00 (alas, I am the age of a typical student but not in school, there's no way to fake a edu discount is there? ;) :D )

    How does that look? A few Q's.

    1) I keep reading on here about how you should purchase the minimum ram and then buy from another dealer. Should I really absolutely refrain from ordering all the ram from apple's website? I mean how much cheaper is it to buy from another place and then install myself? If its like $50 I'd prefer to have everything done at once.

    2) Will the iBook overheat? Last computer I bought was a custom PC from www.ibuypower.com, it barely made a year and then the processor melted. Wasn't a pretty sight. Needless to say I don't want a repeat of that this time around.

    3) Is there a slipcase or something that comes with the ibook. Doesn't seem like there is a free one from the website but I thought I'd double check. If not, is it necessary to get a case/backpack/thinger to tote around the ibook and if so do you have any recommendations? Don't want to spend too much in this area, but want the maximum protection for my money.

    Also, I'm still not sure If I'm willing to drop 1500 dollars on a new computer right now, as I don't desperately need one. Perhaps you could offer some persuasion for me to splurge ( I really want to , but damn sensibility always kicks in.) Thanks for taking time to answer these admittedly noob questions, I hope that I become a Mac addict or something. :)
  2. Wes macrumors 68020


    Jun 22, 2001
    Re: Possible Switcher (new iBooks)

    1. It's quite a big difference depending on how much ram you buy, can be from $100-$300. Check at http://www.crucial.com (Sadly Crucial doesn't list the iBook G4 ram, I don't know the specs, but they'll it up in a day or two).
    2. I have heard no stories of normal (unoverclocked) macs melting.

    3. There are plenty of cases, but I know somebody else will have a better answer.
  3. sahnert macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2003
    I would suggest checking out the 12" iBook configured similarly. You're looking at a couple hundred dollars less. I know the 12" screen sounds pretty darn small but i've been using one for the past year or so and absolutely love it. I wouldn't want a larger one. The 12" is so light and portable. The other thing I've heard is that the 14", although a larger screen size, is still the same resolution, meaning you are not getting more useable space, just everything looks bigger.
    I am working on a 12" PB now but used a 12" iBook quite a bit last year. I can pretty much guarantee that your computer will not overheat considering you use it in "normal" working conditions. I have noticed my PB gets somewhat warmer than the iBook, but that's due to the aluminum chassis vs. the iBook's high impact plastic. The aluminum simply conducts heat better. but no, it won't melt down. As far as I know.
    The iBook does not come with a slipcase, besides the little white foam pouch it is packaged in. Considering that the iBook is designed to be "rugged" I don't think you need to spend a lot on a case. If you don't mind a few minor scratches just carrying it in a regular backpack should be fine. otherwise i know there are some close fitting sleeve things made just for the iBook, although i don't remember who makes them.
    as for the ram question, i've heard that same comment a lot. I bought all of my ram from apple and it was nice to have it all installed when i recieved the machine. don't know about the price difference of getting it elsewhere.

    as far as persuasion, just think about the things you could be doing with your new ibook. Going on a trip and want to watch a dvd in the car? Combo Drive will do that. Like listening to music? iTunes/music store makes it easy to make cd's of all your favorite stuff or purchase music online. Want to make a movie? iMovie is by far the most powerful, full featured production studio for the price (free with your new computer).
    of course there are a host of other wonderful things like 3D games etc.

    If you really don't think you need a computer right now, you might wait a while and see what upgrades apple dishes out next. If you do spring for the new computer, go for the 12" iBook. You'll definitely be happy you did.
  4. nodmonkey macrumors member

    Feb 3, 2003
    Hampshire, UK
    i'd say go with the 12" as well, especially when it is indeed the same resolution as the 14". you are only reducing your portability and sapping more battery-life with the 14" (and maybe slightly improving your eyesight).

    as far as an economical slipcase goes, you could always do what i do: slip the iBook in a jiffy envelope. yep, a new or reused padded envelope does the job nicely for me (obviously it isn't cool and needs to be carried in a backpack or something, but it serves its purpose well).
  5. jrv3034 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 23, 2002
    Check out reputable resellers like www.macmall.com or others. They often have deals where you get free RAM (with a $30 instsallation fee) and even free carrying cases for the laptops. Heck, they also have free shipping and no tax, so it could save you a bundle.

    Just a thought. Also, the 12" is great, but the 14" gives you a faster processor and a bigger hard disk. Go with the best you can afford.
  6. macrumors12345 macrumors 6502

    Mar 1, 2003
    Re: Possible Switcher (new iBooks)

    Actually, it turns out that Apple is not "overcharging" much for the RAM on the new iBooks. The Apple Store charges $150 for a 512 MB PC2100 DIMM (for 640 MB total); Crucial.com charges $125 for the same DIMM. So the price difference is not that big. You could probably get it for around $100 or so if you went with a "generic" DIMM, but then you run a higher risk of getting a bad memory module (which can be a real pain in the a** to deal with, from my own personal experience).

    However, as someone above mentioned, if you buy from one of the Mac mail order places, you can frequently get some "free" RAM upgrades bundled in. You can also save on sales tax this way (assuming you don't live in the same state as the mail order company).

    No. This will not happen. Period.

    Nope. Though again, you might be able to find a deal with one of the mail order companies where they will bundle a carrying case for free....

    It comes with Panther (10.3)! And the overall computing experience is just so cool, and so refined (Apple's attention to detail can be quite amazing), that once you start using it you won't want to stop. =)
  7. whocares macrumors 65816


    Oct 9, 2002
    Re: Possible Switcher (new iBooks)

    If you're not concerned with aesthetics, just through it (figure of speech!) in your standard backpack. Although this causes scratches to the plastic case, it doens't harm the computer.
  8. dr_fate thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Thanks for each and everyone of your replies so far. Some great info and advice :)

    I appreciate the suggestion on the 12" ibook but I had considered it before, however I don't have the best eyesight in teh world so I would really appreciate the bigger screen. Resolution is not a factor for me anyways as I would keep it in 1024 and not higher.

    Sounds like the ibook is pretty darn durable, but I'd still like to keep as scratch free as possible and think I've found a pretty good case for $40. Half the price of the Brenthaven ibook case and pretty spiffy looking on its own; the Kensington Saddle bag looks like it might be what I'll get. Its got a nice apple logo on the front too, so I can show off to my clueless pc using friends ;)


    Any comments on this particular bag? If its not so great I'd appreciate you guys warning me in advance. Thanks.

    Anyways if I think of anything else I'll post it here. Thanks for any and all help.

    P.S. Should I make a trek to my nearest apple store (which is not near at all) to get this purported 10% discount? Will they even have the new ibooks in stock?
  9. PaisanoMan macrumors member

    Jan 26, 2003
    I recommend checking out cases from Willow Design. Their website isn't the fanciest, but they make the best cases I've ever used, and at very fair prices.

    For what it's worth, I own a 12", and love it. I plan to move up to the 15", but I know I'll sorely miss the smaller form factor. Consider the 12" iBook, or maybe even an Apple-refurbished 12" PowerBook (although I do not have experience with their refurbished products).

    Good luck.
  10. dr_fate thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Another thing. While reading about the 10% discount thread in the other forum a few people mentioned a federal employee discount. I had no clue there was such an offer I thought only students got discounts. My dad is a government employee and he'll probably be paying for half the computer so i might as well buy it in his name and save money. Where do I apply for this discount? Thanks.

    EDIT: Holy Poop! This is even better than the EDU discount!!! SWEET! How come I've never heard of this before!?! Sheesh. Finally Uncle Sam is rewarding hard government workers for their toiling :D
  11. sahnert macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2003
    if you do make a trip to the apple store rather than just buying online, i would suggest at least looking at the 12" iBook. I know it sounds small, but you might find you like it
  12. QCassidy352 macrumors G3


    Mar 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    Apple stores do have the new ibooks in stock, but possibly not every single model. So you should definitely call to check... also, retail stores only carry the stock configurations, so you'd have to buy the RAM separate (I think they might install it for you if you buy it there and have applecare? someone comment on this?)

    also, do you have to buy panther in-store (which you have no reason to do since it comes with the new ibook already) to get the 10% discount on anything else you buy? That's what it sound like to me, but again, someone else comment?

    finally, someone mentioned that the 14" drains battery life faster than the 12". Well, on the new models, both are rated at 6 hours. On the G3 versions, the 14" was rated 6 hours and the 12" 5 hours. I personally used to have both a 12" (600mhz) and a 14" (900mhz) and the battery life was *way* better on the 14". After watching a 2 hour DVD the battery would still have ~35% charge, where as the 12" would not even make it though a full DVD.
  13. Giaguara macrumors 6502a

    Nov 22, 2002
    that looks like a good case for you.

    and not best eye sight = yes, 14".

    one of my friends had a 500 mhz ibook, he dropped it from the 2nd floor of his studio by mistake. the floor (wooden) got a hole where the ibook dropped. the ibook worked perfectly, no (big at least) screatches either. i dont want to try that on my 12" pb, but take that on the way the ibooks are very resistant. ;)
  14. Giaguara macrumors 6502a

    Nov 22, 2002
    oh, the ram.

    you can also install it yourself. it'll take like 5 minutes to figure out how to do it and to do it. but get the 512 mb more as said, it will make the ibook be so smooth.
  15. dr_fate thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    If I do make the trip out tonight I'd definately check out all models including the 12 inch.

    Red Sox fan qcassidy? I'm born and raised in Massachusetts (New Bedford to be specific) do you live there? If so what town? Driving up to Boston on a friday night is quite a trip, one that I wouldn't want to take if the discount doesn't apply to new computers and if you can't stack it with the fed one.
  16. FuzzyBallz macrumors 6502a


    May 2, 2003
    Home of Al-Qaida
    Get the 14", your eyes will thank you for it. The 12" has portability, but it's just way too small. Since you'll be using this as your main system, the 14" is a wiser choice by far.

    BTW, order your RAM for the iBook. For whatever reason it's cheaper than crucial.com on the iBook series.
  17. sparkleytone macrumors 68020


    Oct 28, 2001
    Greensboro, NC
    thats the bag I have! its been great. it works either as a saddlebag or a backpack. also, it just solidified that I had mad 'the switch' since it has an apple logo on it :D
  18. dr_fate thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    AWESOME! Glad to see its a good bag, I really think its the most stylish of all the laptop bags and a steal at $40. Your recommendation has sealed the deal for that part of the equation. And FuzzyBallz, I'm 99.9999 % sure I'm getting the 14inch and its mainly because of my poopy eyes. Portability is nice , but I will be using it quite a bit at home and I suppose it would be my 'main' computer since I can't see using this Wintel piece of crap anymore once I switch over. :)
  19. alobonzo macrumors newbie

    Sep 28, 2003
    IBOOK G4 support dual display

    I wanted to write a new thread but something happened with my account verification.
    Well, as the post subject says...... The new IbookG4 supports dual display with the script that was used with the G3 Ibooks!
    I put the link so you can read the first impressions of a new user.
    Can't wait for the new IbookG4.
    Hope this helps.
    Please I think it will be really good for the rest of the community if you can write the new thread for me cause I can't. Thanx
    Sorry for my english
  20. dr_fate thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Damn. Just hit a huge financial roadblock and will have to put off from buying an ibook (for now). It really sucks to come so close to buying it and then having to turn back. (Not to mention live with my crappy pc in the interim :( ) Oh well, I'm definately gonna stick around here and keep learning so when I can afford to switch I'll be well informed. Thanks for all the help you guys gave, hope this thread can help someone at least.
  21. huntsman macrumors member

    Oct 26, 2003
    Re: Re: Possible Switcher (new iBooks)

    Well, that's $150 for a 512MB module from the Apple Store, or $125 for a 512MB module from Crucial PLUS the leftover 128MB module, which you can sell on eBay or something. So in effect, the difference is a little bit bigger.

    Regarding peoples' comments on 12" vs 14" battery life, remember that the 14" uses a higher capacity battery (61-watt hour instead of 50-watt-hour), so there's no inconsistency in them both being rated at 6 hours.
  22. mattroberts macrumors regular


    Oct 25, 2003
    Where did you see the kensington bag? its not on the website and it looks great :)

  23. dr_fate thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2003
    The Kensington Bag IS on the apple website! Look under '3rd party products: portable' and its there. Good luck, wish I was getting one. Oh well, all good things take time.
  24. mattroberts macrumors regular


    Oct 25, 2003
    Oh!! I kept looking on the kensington website. and Its not available on the Canadian website :-( I'm going to try and order it from the US anyhow :)

    Cheers and thanks for the heads up!


    leaning more and more to a 15in PB !

    push me over the edge! :)

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