Those of you with a 17" Powerbook G4 ...

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by DinoMac, Dec 31, 2005.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #1
    Is the only CON with the 17" the portability? What else can you say you don't like about it.

    I'm torn on whether to get the 15" or the 17".

    I will be doing alot of video editing, and also working with digital photos on my new laptop. But after reading about the [lines] problem with the 15", I have now shifted my sights on a new 17". (I get 10% apple laptops w/company discount)

    Should I get the 17" over the 15" if I can afford it right now?

    Also, if I were to get the 17", should I definitely get the 7200, 100gb hard drive? I think I will upgrade the RAM on my own later. What do you think?
     
  2. macrumors 68030

    Benjamindaines

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2005
    Location:
    A religiously oppressed state
    #2
    I don't really find portability to be a problem with the 17" PowerBook, the only problem I find with it is that you can't use it in small spaces for obvious reasons.

    The 17" PowerBooks don't have the "lines" like the 15" ones do.

    I would say to get the 17" unless you need to be working on the train, plain, or public transport of any kind.

    Good luck with you purchase, I'm sure other people can add more as well.
     
  3. macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    #3
    i just returned my 15 for thte 17. i thought the 15 was the ideal and it may well be, butu with the display issue, i'm liking the 17s screen more. there's a bit more real estate too.

    either way you gotta lug the sucker around. the real portability diff that's worth fretting over is goign from 12 to bigger.

    i got teh 120gb and the drive is quieter than the seagate 7200 unit i got with the 15 ultimate. i decided to go for 1.5gb ram total to make up for the "difference." ;)

    you can't go wrong either way... wait you can... with the 15 until apple fixes the problem from the factory, the 17 is the "better" buy right now. i know apple knows of the issue. i'd hate to have someone mess with a brand new laptop... even apple. their store sales people are generally a joke and their repair centers ain't much better from that i gather here in this forum and in macnn.
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    at the end of the hall
    #4
    I have the new 17" after having a 15" TiBook for about 3 years. I don't really find the size a huge issue except for the aforementioned space on a train thing. Otherwise it is perfect. Great screen and weight. If you are going to do Video for a significant chunk of your time, I would get the 17", the 15" would be barely able to fit your tools. I use Photoshop and InDesign day-in and day-out, and the extra pixels have actually made me more productive. Get the 17" unless you must work in very small desk spaces.
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    UKnjb

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #5
    Hi.
    I have a 17" G4 and, maybe sadly, it has given me more pleasure than just about anything else I own. The larger screen is so well worth having and I have not found that portability is compromised at all - I travel a lot (currently writing this from NZ and worked on the G4, on the plane, the whole way from UK). I had the 1GB RAM and the 7200 100GB HD upgrades at the time of purchase and haven't regretted it - maybe the 100 GB HD was overkill since, after 6 months, I see that I still have 68 GB free even though I have a heap of apps and my work on the machine. All of my 'entertainment' stuff - mp3 and video files - I keep on an external 200 GB USB drive.
    It has been totally reliable and bomb-proof; not one crash (running OS X 10.3.9), fast enough for me and the big screen is a definite comfort plus.
    I would give an unqualified 100% support for the machine; the only thing that irritates me is the 'maximum 5-changes and you're out' region code settings on the DVD player - especially because of the amount of travelling I do. A small price to pay, but I do still do not understand the arguments for having this restriction.
    Good luck with whatever choice you make and --- Happy New Year
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    kingcrowing

    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    Location:
    Burlington, VT
    #6
    dont get the 7200 RPM drive, its loud, hot and it vibrates, plus if you ever need that extra space you wont regret it, and I'd personally get the 17" right now, but if they fix the screen, RAM, and battey issues with the new 15" I would get that however right now I dont think its worth the risk, so if you need it now go 17" otherwise wait till jan 10th just to see if they fix the issues...
     
  7. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2005
    #7
    17" owns and i don't give a flyin f' what anyone else sez. kthx baibai.
     
  8. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2005
    #8
    i disagree 100%. my 7200rpm drive runs cool and is not loud at all. oh, and it's also faster than yours. :eek:
     
  9. macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    #9
    if your unit isn't the hi-res, i'd say the 15" provides nearly as much or more screen to play with???

    great first sentence :)
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    #10
    hardly noticeable in real life

    but it does click audibly unlike the slower, bigger 5400. it does run hotter.

    but is it a deal killer for the 7200? certainly not
     
  11. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2005
    #11
    if it clicks, i've never noticed it. and no, it does not run hot. how do i know? because i own one.
     
  12. macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    #12
    i owned one for a week as well and that sucker runs hot... not 24/7, but it does run hotter than the 54000 120gb unit i got now.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #13
    Love watchin you guys debate, thanks for the input!

    Couple relative questions then about which HD is better:

    Does the 7200rpm drain the battery faster?

    Does the 7200rpm significantly perform better when using iMovies or Final Cut Pro?

    Is the 7200 loud enough to notice when watching a DVD movie?

    Thanks all - and happy new year -Lookin forward to '06 and learning so much more with my new MAC!!!
     
  14. Moderator

    840quadra

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    Land of 10,000 Lakes
    #14
    In most cases the 7200rpm drive will give you a noticeable speed improvement when running disk intensive applications. A few on here and on other forums say to avoid Hatachi drives, and look at something like Seagate's 7200 drives for less heat, and good performance.

    Just to note on FCP, when working heavily within that application you will get the best performance with an external firewire drive. No matter how much memory you have in your powerbook, your system will still use pagefiles that are on the boot drive, causing your system to run slower if it is both paging, and writing video data at the same time.

    The external isn't needed, but the combination of that and a 7200rpm drive will give you the best performance on your powerbook.

    Good luck, and have fun shopping ! :)
     
  15. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #15
    Okay, how do I know if the PB I am getting has a Seagate or a Hitachi HD?
    Do I just ask the sales person, or is it standard?

    Like, is the 7200 a Seagate, and the 5400 a Hitachi?

    The reason I am asking is because on the 17", the option for either Harddrive, There is no price difference, you just have a choice between the 2.

    P.S.- I am buying this at an Apple Store(Lenox Mall, Atlanta, GA)
     
  16. Moderator

    840quadra

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    Land of 10,000 Lakes
    #16
    Good question, I am fairly sure those reports came from people who installed their own hard drives, as opposed to buying a BTO (Built To Order) computer.

    Either way, I believe you should be fine if buying a BTO from apple, as it will be 100% covered under your warranty (the drive not the data on it), and shouldn't get hot enough to damage your system.

    ::EDIT::
    If you are able to boot the system before you buy it (highly doubtful that they will let you) you can open System Profiler and look at the information listed..

    Below picture is from my iBook I have with me now.
     

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  17. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #17
    Anyone know if I can get the 7200rpm Harddrive at an Apple store when I buy there, or do I have to order it online to get that installed?

    I want to go there today and pick one up! :)

    -Just won $625 in my fantasy football championship yesterday so I have money to burn baby! :D
     
  18. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #18
    Nevermind, just called and found out they only sell it with the 5400. I think I will go for the longer battery life with the 5400 and more space. Plus, I can't wait any longer. :cool: lol
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #19
    Patience...

    >>>For video editing...Are you starting a project tomorrow???...wait if you can for Intel Powerbooks...much faster, DUAL CORE machines are coming soon. Rendering will be vastly faster, more realtime fx, etc, etc. Most people buy Powerbooks cuz they look cool, but an iBook would fit their needs just fine. You actually *need* a Powerbook...and the new iBooks(!) will be better than the current Powerbooks! Oh and...17" all the way. Good luck...

    peace
     
  20. macrumors 68000

    Jovian9

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2003
    Location:
    Planet Zebes
    #20
    I used to have a 17" PB and had no problems with portability........except when we walked for about 3 hours straight in NYC with some friends and I had it with me......got a little heavy....as would anything you carry for 3 hours on your shoulders. We have a 12" PB now, and I like it a lot, but that 17" PB was great! I'll get another someday.
    But like others have said, wait about a week to see if they announce any new laptops.
     
  21. Moderator

    840quadra

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    Land of 10,000 Lakes
    #21
    Please, :rolleyes:

    Don't give buying recommendations with imaginary hardware specifications. Nobody outside of Apple corporate (and traditionally only a select few within Apple) know the exact specifications for the new powerbooks, iBooks, Minis, Powermacs or exactly when they will come out.

    While dual core powerbooks are a strong possibility, it may also be that those will come in a later release of the next generation Powerbook, or only in a specific model.

    Telling people to be cautious and keep their eyes peeled for any release at Macworld is a great idea. If you can wait for a next gen powerbook (whenever that will come), do wait. Otherwise if you need it now, pick from what is available in the market.
     
  22. macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    #22
    i'd be curious to find out if anyone did any REAL LIFE tests measuring time "SAVED" from using the 5400RPM v. the 7200RPM hard drives. Until then, everything is pure technobabble nerd speak, in my not so humble opinion.

    I went from the 7200RPM to a 5400 120g and I notice no discernable difference whatsoever to say it's made any kind of real impact on the way i work with my computer, speed to complete any sort of deliverable.

    wait, there are a couple... less heat on my legs :D, quieter operation, and 20gb more space.
     
  23. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #23
    Well, thanks all for your input.

    My new PB 17" is up and running and it's downright beautiful.

    I have 14 days to take it back if they come out with a new PB which I doubt. Also if the price drops, they will honor the difference in price.

    Anywho, I am about to dive into the new world of Mac, and I am stoked right now. Great way to kick off 2006!

    P.S. - i did notice the lines on the 15" when I was in the apple store today. I am one for perfection, and like BENJMNS has said, that issue could be huge if I decide to sell this a year from now.
     
  24. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    #24
    Sad mac users

    LOL, maybe sadly!!???

    Well, you did talk this lifelong PC-user into the world of Mac so there is no doubting your commitment to the brand!!

    Still waiting on its arrival (17", 100GB/7200, 2G RAM). I decided that I don't think I want to be using MacIntel v.1.0 even if it is announced in a few days time. I bought on education discount so bought the additional 2y cover for £149, thinking about resell value in a year or so.

    Note taken about the DVD region issue...time to think on that one.

    Speak soon,
    Dan

     
  25. macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    #25
    Is the Apple Store really honoring this? per policy? If true, sweet!

    if you return it, you will be charged a 10% restocking fee. :( something to know/expect should you go that route.

    i exchanged my 17 for another 17 cuz the delete key wouldn't work out of the box. :(
     

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