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Should I buy extra RAM and HD for my iBook?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by iAFC, Oct 2, 2005.

  1. macrumors member

    Hello everybody,

    Maybe you remember me from some other topics. OK, I decided to buy an iBook 12" when I visit Miami in December, and I want to know if buying extra 256 MB SDRAM is really necessary. Knowing that's a "build-to-order" option, which costs more $75, I want to know if it really makes difference at the performance of the computer.

    Another doubt is: how many gigabytes Mac OS 10.4 occupies in the hard disk?

    PS.: I will use this Mac to make school works, access the Internet, communicate with my friends, listen to music, use Photoshop and get my photos from a digital camera.

  2. macrumors 6502a


    You will want to buy RAM since it is the most cost effective way of improving performance. However, don't buy a 256 - buy a 512 at least; if you can afford it, go bigger. You will see great improvement when multitasking, using Photoshop, etc.
  3. macrumors 68020

    Its funny because the plan for me was to upgrade the RAM in my new iBook to a GB from the stock 512mb as soon as I bought it. However, the current RAM works perfectly fine and I hardly ever see beachballs. Granted im not using iMovie or Motion or anything like that, but I regularly have Adium, Camino, Pages, Address Book, Mail, NetNewsWire, iTunes, iCal, VoodooPad and 5 Dashboard Widgets all running at the same time and get no slowdown. Its actually amazing, coming from my Pentium 3Ghz PC, that this little iBook multitasks many times better.

    If your application needs say more RAM the better, then go ahead and upgrade it. Id do it manually if I was you though and save some money. In my situation though, im going to invest the RAM money into a bluetooth mouse or towards the Soundsticks speakers I intend to buy.
  4. macrumors G5


    Apple's RAM is overpriced. You can get a 512 Mb (for 1 Gb total on the current model iBooks) from Data Memory Systems for US$56 and a 1 Gb (for 1.5 Gb total) for US$144

    Whoever you choosee, make sure they are a reputable dealer who tests and guarantees compatibility with your model Macintosh.

    Adding RAM to any laptop has a benefit that you don't see in a desktop -- if you can reduce the number of page-outs, the machine will access the hard drive less. This speeds up performance (because laptop hard drives are much slower than desktops') and it extends the battery runtime if the hard drive is able to sleep more often (the screen backlight and the hard drive are the largest consumers of battery power outside of the CPU itself)

  5. macrumors member

    Thanks for the replies! I decided to save the RAM money and invest it on something else. Now, there's another question for you, guys: I'm thinking of buying iWork 05. Is it better than Office? (the only applications I use from Office in my PC are Word and PowerPoint, which I think would be easily substituted by Pages and Keynote).
  6. macrumors 68020

    It depends on what you will be using it for. I decided to buy iWork on switching to Mac last week for the coming university year. I havent really got into it yet, but Pages is very different in terms of GUI etc than Word. I plan to do my first big paper on it, so hopefully I will be able to see whether its good value in time.

    I did try experimenting with its compatibility with .doc files though. It reads them perfectly, and any times I saved my document as .doc it read exactly the same in Word too. Theres always the option to convert to a pdf file, so I say there is no problems in using Pages for your word processing needs..

    As for Keynote, I havent used it yet, but every review ive seen of it says its much better than Powerpoint (though that isnt hard to achieve).
  7. macrumors P6


    Saving files as pdf is a great way to proceed. You can go to the Adobe website and purchase a one year unlimited transfer of files to pdf. It's $99/year, my wife love's it. That would be a great way to go with iWorks. Good Luck.
  8. macrumors member

    Thank you guys! Your help enlighted my thoughts. ;)
    I decided to buy it all:

    iBook 12" 1.33GHz = $999.00
    AirPort Express Base Station with AirTunes = $129.00
    iWork ’05 - DVD = $79.00
    Incase Nylon Laptop Sleeve for iBook 12" = $49.95
    iSkin ProTouch PB Keyboard Protector = $19.95
    Total: $1,197.90

    Do you think it's a good acquisition? :)
  9. macrumors 6502

    iAFC, I just have the 512 RAM and it works good for me. But then, I hardly do anything really intensive.. just browsing/typing/music etc..
  10. macrumors P6


    Yes, I think that it sounds like a great acquisition. It should perform very well. Are you going to get AppleCare and extra RAM?
  11. macrumors member


    Same thing over here. I originally set out upgrade the stock 512MB to at least a Gig, third party of course, right after I got it from the apple store. Thing is, I can barely imagine it any slower, barely any beachballs, and I don't do anything that memory intensive, so I don't think it's happening any thime soon. Love this iBook.

    Oh, and subtract 20GB from the written amount of storage (i.e. I got the "60GB" HD, and when I opened it from the box, I had about 42GB of free space). Definetely upgrade the HD, even if you are going to go the external HD route also. 22GB of free space just isn't reasonable.
  12. macrumors member

    Is AppleCare important? I don't know how does it work... If I get AppleCare in the USA, could it be used in Brazil? By the way, that's too expensive. For US$ 249.00 I could buy an iPod.

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