PowerBook or iBook G4

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by stetsows, Oct 29, 2003.

  1. stetsows macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Birmingham, AL
    #1
    I'm looking at replacing my iMac DV 400Mhz and WallStreet PB with either the new 12"PB or 14' iBook with the 933Mhz G4. My main uses will be internet and soho. Also will use for some gaming. Durability is a must since I in all liklihood will have to travel with it.
     
  2. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #2
    I would say the 14" iBook, since you seem to want a 14" screen. The 12" is fine, but if you want the larger screen, the iBook is a good way to go.

    However, you did say that you wanted to do gaming. I would highly suggest waiting for iBook vs 12" PB gaming performance.

    Also, if you are are serious about gaming, I would very highly suggest a 15" PowerBook. It has the Radeon 9600 Mobile with 64MB DDR RAM. This is out preform the iBook and 12" Powerbook by at least 2 times.

    The 15" Powerbook, IMO, gives you a better value for the money. I bought a 21" Trinitron monitor with my Powerbook and find myself using the built in screen 9 out of 10 times while sitting at my desk. The screen is very sharp and the resolution is good enough for almost any task.
     
  3. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #3
    ibook definitely wins in durability. But the smaller size and lighter weight of the PB will be nice if you have to carry it a lot.

    As far as gaming goes, neither has a great video card. But it depends on what games you want to play - I have a 12" PB and the only game I play is war3, which my PB plays perfectly. But if you want to play things like doom3, you need the 15" PB (neither the ibook nor the 12" PB will be acceptable performance-wise).

    I agree that the 15" is great, but I wouldn't say it's a better *value.* It's awfully expensive, even the 1 Ghz version. I was deciding between that and the 12", and I just couldn't justify spending ~$500 (depends on config of course) more for the 15".
     
  4. stetsows thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Birmingham, AL
    #4
    I wish I had the extra cash to splurge on a 15" but 1600 is my upper limit. As for my gaming I don't do a lot FPS. Rather I play more real time strategies and RPGs.
     
  5. lchogan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2003
    #5
    What do you mean ibook wins in durability? Are there durability issues with the powerbooks? They feel much more solid than the ibooks. I'm debating between powerbook and ibook too!

    Luke
     
  6. kuyu macrumors 6502a

    kuyu

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    Louisville
    #6
    I've handled iBooks and Pbook's a little bit at school, and ibooks are just more solid. The Apple hardware page mentions that the iBook was designed to be slipped into a backpack and jostled around a bit. It has a magnesium frame and a rubbermounted hard drive too.

    The Powerbook will always outperform the iBook, but this iBook update to G4 signals a coming update in Powerbook speed. Probably no G5 yet, but look for system bus, cache, and memory bandwidth to increase.

    I play Jedi II and AOE II on my eMac 700 just fine, and the iBook lowend model is more powerful. The only drawback is the 1024 X 768 display. But expose almost negates this disadvantage.

    Happy Hunting.
     
  7. fraeone macrumors regular

    fraeone

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2003
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #7
    Hrmm.. they just updated the Powerbooks, I'm not so sure I would agree that a PB update is right around the corner. I would guess MWSF at the earliest.

    fraeone
     
  8. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #8
    the ibooks are designed to be tossed in a backpack, knocked around a bit, and keep on working. The casing scratches easily, but in terms of actually hurting the thing, it's pretty hard to do.

    The powerbook is very scratch resistant, but if you drop it, you're in a lot more trouble than if you drop the ibook. The powerbooks are more "solid," but in terms of surviving shock or impact, the ibook is gonna win. Personally, I baby every computer I have; I would never just toss either one in to a backpack or back seat, so it's no issue to me. The powerbook is in no way flimsy, but it just can't be abused to the same degree the ibook can.

    if you're not doing FPS gaming, either the ibook or the 12" PB will be great.

    btw, I also doubt that powerbook updates are coming soon. These models are a month old. I think we will see g5 powerbooks in spring-summer of '04, and no updates before that. G4s in the ibooks does *not* signal powerbook updates since Apple has been very careful to keep the two lines distinct.
     
  9. USN Squid macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2003
    #9
    So if you lay the 14.1 G4 iBook next to the 12in PB (w/SD), what are the differences (outside of the SD)?
     
  10. pyrotoaster macrumors 65816

    pyrotoaster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Location:
    Oak Park, IL
    #10
    Go for the 12" Powerbook. It beats out the iBooks.

    The new iBooks can't take as much RAM and have half the cache. The Powerbook just has more power.

    As for the screen size, while the 14" screen is bigger, it doesn't have any more pixels. You won't really have more space, just bigger stuff on the screen.

    The only real bonus to the iBook is the longer battery, but that's not as important as power.
     
  11. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #11
    here are the differences as I see them:
    Powerbook has:
    512k cache
    DVI out
    audio line in
    256 RAM built in
    FX 5200go w/ 32 MB video memory

    ibook has:
    256 cache
    VGA out
    128 RAM built in
    Mobility Radeon 9200 w/ 32 video memory
    longer battery life

    they also come bundled with somewhat different software.
    To me, it's clear that the powerbook wins. The ibook's advantages would be a slightly better graphics card (but fairly comparable) and longer battery life.

    The cache on the powerbook is what makes the difference for me. Twice the L2 cache makes a really big difference in performance. Consider the fact that new 1 Ghz Albooks are as fast or faster as the Tibook 1 Ghz which had 256 L2 cache and 1 MB L3 cache. Now consider that the ibook 1 Ghz is the same processor as that Tibook but without any L3 cache.

    Of course, the ibook is also bigger, which could be a good or a bad thing. And it costs $100 less than the 12" PB combodrive. (to bring them totally even, add $50 for a HD upgrade to 60 gigs on the PB, but add $50 for bluetooth on the ibook, so that's a wash.)
     
  12. stetsows thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Birmingham, AL
    #12
    Thanks

    I finally broke down yesterday and came to the same conclusion and bought the PowerBook. Overall processor performance is better and bluetooth was standard, not a BTO like the iBook.

    Picked it up from ClubMac with free 512MB upgrade of RAM and carrying case after mail-in rebate. They even knocked another 50 bucks off because I agreed to take the AppleCare. It'll be here Wednesday I can't wait! :D
     
  13. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #13
    congrats, I'm sure you'll love it. The overall performance is better... and it's just so darn beautiful! :)
     
  14. rodnarms macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2003
    Location:
    Port Rowan, Ontario, Canada
    #14
    I recently had to make the decision of which laptop to get. First it boiled down to a G4 iBook or a PowerBook.

    When I looked at the performance differences that was an easy decision to make.

    Then I fought over getting a tricked out 12" or a combo drive 15" PowerBook. In the end my 12" Superdrive with 512 megs of RAM is sitting an the airport in Taiwan right now waiting to get to me.
     

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