Powerbook G4 1.25GHz, 1.25GB ram, and Leopard

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Nero9171, Mar 8, 2008.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #1
    I acquired a Powerbook G4 in a trade with a friend. It currently has no OS installed, and dont know what to buy

    Here are the specs

    15" Aluminum
    1.25 GHz G4
    1.25 GB Ram
    64mb Vram
    80 GB HD

    Will Leopard run well on that? I usually have these programs running at the same time. Chat, Mail, iTines, Firefox (with 5-10 tabs). Occasionally, I will have other things open as well. Will it lag too much to the point it is not going to be enjoyable to use? Or will it work smoothly? I occasionally use garageband also.

    Is 250 GB the largest HD I can get for it?



    Edit: I think I will max out the ram, then get the larger/faster hard drive. 1 gig sticks of PC 2700 are going for 50 shipped on ebay, and its actually a brand I use in my old iBook, so I trust it.


    $100 for ram
    $90 for faster/larger HD
    $120 for Leopard
    +_____________________
    = $310 for everything


    I don't mind spending the money, but will this be worth it? I want to breathe new life into this Powerbook. It needs to last me 2 more years, until I graduate college.


    Sorry for all the questions, but I GREATLY appreciate the help
     
  2. macrumors 6502

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    Location:
    Glendale, az
    #2


    I think it will run fine but that's just me! :p
     
  3. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #3
    Thanks! The quick reply is appreciated :)
     
  4. macrumors 68040

    powerbook911

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #4
    The hard drive and RAM would help.

    RAM would be easier to do, and it would help for sure. Leopard loves memory.

    I have a 1.5 GHZ G4 Powerbook with 1.25 GB (the max on my little 12-incher), and Leopard runs ok. Most things are as good or better than they were on Leopard.

    I have a modern iMac as well, so it's not like I only know old machines. I don't use my Powerbook for a lot of stuff, but I still enjoy it, and it handles Leopard nicely. I say the joy of the current OS is worth it even on a machine like our Powerbooks.
     
  5. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Location:
    Saitama, Japan
    #5
    I have a 12" Powerbook (768mb ram/1Ghz) with both Leopard and Tiger.

    My advice is it depends of what you are going to use it for and what software. If you are using it for just basic stuff like internet, word processing, movies, listening to music, etc, then Leopard would be fine on that Powerbook.

    As for me, I use Tiger for 90% of the time simply because I do lots of Adobe CS work. CS runs great on Tiger but is not compatible with Leopard.

    If you can, my advice would be to partition your drive and install both Tiger and Leopard on each partition. Then you can choose the best of both worlds until you are sure all you applications work smoothly in Leopard after a few weeks. If you experience problems, just switch back to Tiger.

    Tiger seems like a much more mature OS than Leopard at the moment for G4 machines, in my opinion. Although I miss ‘spaces’ and ‘quick-look’ in Leopard, I prefer the current stability of Tiger.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #6
    I think I will max out the ram, then get the larger/faster hard drive. 1 gig sticks of PC 2700 are going for 50 shipped on ebay, and its actually a brand I use in my old iBook.


    $100 for ram
    $90 for faster/larger HD
    $120 for Leopard
    +_____________________
    = $310 for everything


    I don't mind spending the money, but will this be worth it? I want to breathe new life into this Powerbook. It needs to last me 2 more years,3 until I graduate college.

    EDIT:

    Thats a great idea, I will most likely end up doing that. But yes, the majority of my usage is Firefox, iTunes, Word, iCal, Garageband, Mail, and Aperture
     
  7. thread starter macrumors member

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    Mar 8, 2008
    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #7
    Does anyone else have an opinion?
     
  8. macrumors 68040

    KingYaba

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2005
    Location:
    Up the irons
    #8
    Nero9171, will this be your first Macintosh? I ask because if you have a Tiger (OS 10.4) disk lying around I would suggest saving $120. Of course Leopard will run, but $300 being put into that G4 seems a little high.
     
  9. macrumors regular

    catachip

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Location:
    Vancouver, British Columbia
    #9
    1.25 GB is already the maximum amount of RAM this computer will accept - you can't add any more. If you upgrade the hard drive, I would recommend putting in a 7,200 RPM drive to get the maximum performance benefit out of an otherwise lagging computer.

    Leopard will run just fine - I installed it on a similar computer recently. The 12" PowerBook is a gem of a machine. Keep it!
     
  10. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #10
    Its my first, but I use my friends all the time, and he said he had an extra license that I could use.

    Ok, so then $50 for the ram, 0-129 for the os (depending if I get leopard), and the hard drive. I havent looked at 7200's, but any idea how cheap a 120 or 160 is? The money I am saving on the ram, and possibly OS will give me some extra money to spend.



    I know this isnt a 7200, but will it work? http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-250GB-Lapto...ryZ42184QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
     
  11. macrumors regular

    catachip

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Location:
    Vancouver, British Columbia
    #11
    Any 2.5" hard drive with a maximum height of 9.5 mm will work. I don't see a height on this posting, but, 9.5 mm is standard and I assume that is what this is. I would suggest newegg.com for your purchase. Their prices are very good and their selection is great.

    You can get up to a 200 GB drive at 7200 RPM right now. Or a 160 GB, like this one ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822145180 ) for $130. Poke around the website to find the others, just remember the specs I posted above.

    I would seriously recommend getting a 7,200 RPM drive. This will let you eek as much as you can out of the machine. Unless an extra 50 GB of slower storage is going to make or break you.

    Know that the 12" PowerBook is in high demand now - it is the most popular laptop Apple ever made. I sold a 1.33 Ghz PowerBook with an 80 GB drive and 1.25 GB of RAM on Facebook (of all places) for $850.

    EDIT: For some reason, I read he had a 12" PowerBook, not a 15". Sorry.
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    deadpixels

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2006
    #12
    where exactly did you get that from? i had the same machine with 2gb RAM and it works just fine. my little brother still use it (it's over 4 years old and runs like a champ) to the OP you will be just fine with 2gb RAM.
    here is the RAM specs from Mactracker
     

    Attached Files:

  13. macrumors regular

    catachip

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Location:
    Vancouver, British Columbia
    #13
    Yikes, sorry! My mistake... I have totally been posting while thinking it was a 12" PowerBook. You're right, the max is 2 GB.
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    deadpixels

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2006
    #14
    no harm done, i'm never wrong and i'm always right :D
     
  15. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2007
    #15
    Please be careful about "any 2.5". The linked HD above is a SATA drive. The older Powerbooks take the older ATA (IDE) or PATA drives. I think they max out around 120 GB at 7200.
     
  16. thread starter macrumors member

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    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #16
    Wow, I get home and look at all the help I got :D


    So what would be the best thing to do first? Max out the ram, or get the 200GB 7200 RPM drive? I am willing to sacrifice data storage for better performance.


    This may be off topic, and possibly the wrong place, so tell me if that is so. But I was told that the Powerbook is worth $650-700. Would I be better off selling it on Ebay, having roughly 600 clear, then use that with the money I planned on spending above for performance upgrades to get an Intel Macbook?

    I just like to think of all my options
     
  17. macrumors regular

    Westsider 4 Mac

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2007
    Location:
    On the West Side
    #17
    Time to upgrade

    I LOVE my PBG4, but everyday that goes by, you start to realize that you need to catch up to now. That means intel MBP models.:):apple:
     
  18. thread starter macrumors member

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    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #18
    I wish I could, but I dont have the money until I get out of college. :(

    Hopefully this machine will last me 2 years.... I may sell it if you guys think otherwise
     
  19. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2007
    #19
    RAM first

    If you keep the PB, upgrade the RAM first. You can get a 1 GB stick for < $70. That would max your RAM at 2 GB and give you the best performance/$.

    You could sell the PB and add the "upgrade money" and get a refurbished Macbook. However, no OS on your PB is your main problem. You should install an OS and test the machine before adding upgrades.
     
  20. macrumors member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Syracuse, New York
    #20
    I have Powerbook 1.33 Ghz 17" with 512 MB ram and Leopard runs fine, 80 Gigs is also enough, I dont think with already 1.25 GB Ram you need more!
     
  21. thread starter macrumors member

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    #21
    I'm thinking the refurbished macbook would be better in the long run. The Intel should last me longer
     
  22. macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
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    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #22
    I have that exact machine but with 1.5GB RAM. Adobe's CS3 does run a little bit slower than CS2, but I haven't been using it much. For the programs you mention it should be just fine. I've had my machine for 4 1/2 years and expect to have it for at least another 1 to 2 before upgrading to something new.
     
  23. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    Location:
    Eastern Shore, MD
    #23
    Hearing what I highlighted in bold really helped. I know this thing wont get me 5 years, all I need out of it is 2. By then, I will be making enough to buy whatever the new beauty is that :apple: came out with


    What OS are you running?
     
  24. macrumors 65816

    lord patton

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago
    #24
    If you can sell it for a lot, and you are fine with a MacBook, go for the refurb. The $850 refurb MacBook is an amazing deal... I mean, it was the current model just a few weeks ago.

    If you're keeping the PB, get Leopard on it. As others have said, it runs fine on my 12" PB (1.5 GHz, 1.25 GB RAM).

    If the drive in there now is 4200 RPM, I'd change that out first. You have enough RAM for casual use, but that drive is pretty slow.
     
  25. macrumors member

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