12" PowerBook for $350-$400, is this a good price?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by 3N16MA, Aug 11, 2009.

  1. 3N16MA macrumors 65816

    3N16MA

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    #1
    I wanted to get the opinion of some fellow Mac users and maybe some people who own a 12" PowerBook. My brother has a fairly new Windows based desktop for gaming/general use. He was looking into getting a netbook for mobile web surfing, email, pages/word documents, MSN messenger, and some app use like iProcrastinate. His plan was to hackintosh an HP mini 1000 since he has become more and more intrigued with OS X, he already has a Leopard disk from a friend who bought a MacBook Pro under the ADC discount and did not need the extra copy of the OS. Option #2 popped up a few days ago, my brother found a local seller selling a 12" Powerbook, 1.5GHz, 1.25GB RAM, 80GB HDD, Airport, Bluetooth, original manuals, install disks, and packaging. I had a look at it yesterday and it seems like it is 9.5/10 condition, everything looks flawless other than a small scratch on the bottom. It is listed at $400 and my brother wants to offer $350, in your opinion what would be the better choice hackintosh or PowerBook?
     
  2. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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  3. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #3
    Are you ready to pay for old computer which has no warranty etc? Quite high price though, I would offer 250-300$ because Mac2Sell quoted 230$ as its value. Hackintoshing is lways Hackintoshing too
     
  4. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

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    #4
    I just dont see the point of buying any powerbook at this point.
     
  5. Bill Gates macrumors 68020

    Bill Gates

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    #5
    Ditto. Even a cheap netbook is a more capable machine, operating system support aside. If your brother is dead-set on a 12" PowerBook, I wouldn't offer more than $200, but I doubt the seller will take it.
     
  6. dmmcintyre3 macrumors 68020

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    #6
    I would not buy a PPC Mac at all. A hackintosh is more likely to get support than a PPC anything.
     
  7. 3N16MA thread starter macrumors 65816

    3N16MA

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    #7
    Thanks for the advice so far guys, I do think the HP mini is the better deal since he can get it cheaper and it is one of the best looking netbook's. I never used a 12" PowerBook before and I was not sure exactly what they could handle in this point of their lives. The 12" PB is a great looking machine though, I was surprised on how dense it felt when I picked it up. I love the aluminum looking keyboard that matches the bezel and outer shell, it has to be one of Apple's best looking machines ever.
     
  8. the vj macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    I had 4 12" powerbooks at same time just like the one you mentioned. I have 3 now and I am typing in one of them.

    They are great machines, amazing but I believe they may have an extra year of use. Apple products stop working just like that, mother board is burned and that was it.

    So, unless you need that specific model you may look into something more reliable. Now if you need the 12" (witch is not you case) you MAY look for something newer. Capish.

    Is not a good machine, if you buy it you will have a blast but I believe that they may have a life of one or two more years. Well, I bought mine back in 2004 and 5 years later they are just fine.
     
  9. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

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    #9
    Depending on the specs, $400 is pretty good.

    I want to get a PB mainly to use Classic so I can take my HyperCard stacks on the go. That reminds me, I've got to find a copy of HyperCard 2.x.
     
  10. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #10
    You guys are hurting my 12PB's feelings.:eek:

    Bluetooth, wireless, firewire, ethernet, USB, ext. display ports all combined in the spiffiest product Apple ever introduced - period. The PB can run full versions of software too.

    Netbooks are a dime a dozen. If it's in good shape and a 9-9.5 out of ten is, buy it.

    Typed on my 12" 1.5GHz, 1.25GB RAM MINT PowerBook!
     
  11. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

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    #11
    IIRC, some 15'' and 17'' PB models had FW 400 and FW 800 along with a truck load of other nifty I/O.
     
  12. Bill Gates macrumors 68020

    Bill Gates

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    #12
    The problem is that it doesn't offer much value for the money anymore. It's a very outdated platform, and is severely outclassed by similar Intel systems for the same amount of money.
     
  13. index1489 macrumors member

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    #13
    Wow mac guy bias a bit don't buy it for 400 that's way overpriced there's another thread I think were a guy brought a current gen 13 alum MacBook for 600 that's the kinda of deal you should be looking for the first gen MacBook pro that replaced the last gen PowerBook was 4-5 times faster. Power pc no warranty no thanks don't get me wrong I love the PowerBooks just not at that price!
     
  14. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #14
    Did you ever use one? I didn't think so. They are more capable then you'd think.

    The key is, it's a 12". None of the Apple Intel products have come close to the portability/feature set to size ratio. The OP was asking about a last Gen. PB, not an 867MHz model. And yes, I probably am biased but for good reason. I also find it hard to believe a current model 13" MBP could be had for $600. Remember, the aluminum MB is now a collectors edition and it too is old news. Any current gen. MB must be plastic.
     
  15. Bill Gates macrumors 68020

    Bill Gates

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    #15
    No, I haven't ever used one. Yes, they are capable machines from what I've heard, but everything is relative, and in comparison to what's on the market today for the same price they are not worth buying anymore.
     
  16. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #16
    I couldn't disagree more. I believe the 12" PB will out perform any hacked netbook (so as the two run OSX) any day of the week.
     
  17. 3N16MA thread starter macrumors 65816

    3N16MA

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    #17
    I think my brother is going to go with the HP mini, he wasn't totally comfortable spending $350 on a computer without any warranty. Hopefully after he installs Leopard on it he gets a taste for OS X and moves up to a full fledged Mac in the future. Even though I will be getting my 13" MBP tomorrow I still think the 12" PowerBook was amazing for the small amount of time I handled it. If the seller was willing to let it go for $200 I would just buy it for myself, but I doubt he would be willing to do that. Thanks again everyone for the advice, I will try to get my brother to sign up to MacRumors with his hackintosh :D.
     
  18. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    #18
    No they are not. I have one. It's fine for light web browsing and email, but anything beyond that...even youtube..and it can't handle it. Youtube stutters! lmao. And this is with 1.5 ghz, 1.25 gig ram, 80 gig hd 5400rpm...the high-end last version they produced.

    It's a shame. The case is built like a tank, but the actual components are just slow.
     
  19. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    #19
    definitely no coming from someone who has owned both a 12" pb and a netbook
     
  20. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

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    #20
    Youtube & all flash based content has a hard time on Mac OS systems. Bad comparison.

    Netbook burn a DVD? Watch a DVD? Have a reasonable sized HDD? Run full version of Office? Full size keyboard?

    LMFAO. Netbook to PB? Apples to oranges. My first Gen. MB with Intel crap 950 graphics sucks just as much as my PB watching Youtube. The only saving grace on that POS is you can run Windows on it if you really want.
     
  21. caonimadebi macrumors regular

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    #21
    As a previous owner of a 1.33Ghz PBG4 12", these are the reason why the PB should be avoided:
    1. Any flash video sucks horribly on the PB: that means no YouTube, no Hulu without constant stuttering. Not so on most netbooks today
    2. Stock HDD is small: I believe the PB 12" only came with IDE 60 and 80GB HDD. Sure you can swap it for a 250GB, but the installation is a major PITA (I swapped for a SSD which really made a difference). Many netbooks today take 2.5" SATA which is easily expandable to large capacities
    3. RAM: maxes out at 1.5GB but probably not its biggest issue
    4. Screen resolution: The 12" screens packs a measly 1024X768, which a comparable 12" from Dell Mini 12 gets a widescreen 1280X800
    5. Battery Life: With a new battery I got no more than 2.5 hours of usable time. Most netbooks today easily get 4+ hours.

    All these at a full 4.5lb
     
  22. donuttakedonuts macrumors regular

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    #22
    Yes, but it's the pb 12", an AMAZING computer. WAY better than the MBA in most regards, i.e. ports, drive, power, weight, size... Apple could have called it a netbook and it would STILL be the best netbook out there.
     
  23. weckart macrumors 68040

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    #23

    My netbook has a 90% sized keyboard, which is big enough. As for the rest, yes to all of them. My Powerbook could only burn DVD-R and my iBook could not burn any DVD without an external burner, either. As for full version of Office, the sticking point is the screen resolution. Not much difference between 1024x600 and 1024x768. You are not going to enjoy navigating round huge spreadsheets on either. At least I don't have to get a dongle just to attach an external monitor.

    BTW, youtube runs better on OSX on my hacked netbook than it does on my Macbook Pro - runs at lower temperatures and without screaming fans. Apple's hardware and firmware is the problem, not Adobe or OSX per se.
     
  24. clyde2801 macrumors 601

    clyde2801

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    #24
    I've had a couple of last gen 12" pb's and have hackintoshed an msi wind and lenovo s10. The msi had a mattel build quality that was offputting, and both had compromises in their keyboards (D@%n you, right shift key!) and in their postage stamp sized keyboards.

    The 12" had a great form/size factor (if they made the same thing with a c2d and nvidia 9400, I'd be outside of the applestore before they opened today) and could install numbered os updates with impunity.

    Newer model netbooks have improved keyboards, like the hp mini 1000 and dell mini 10v, but even these have compromises in their improved trackpads. HP has buttons on the sides of the pad, while the dell has buttons underneath them in a halfa$$ed rip off of the current mbp models. Your brother should lay hands on what he's looking at to make sure he can use it comfortably.

    The choice comes down to what price your brother is wanting to pay, what he's wanting to do with it, and the level of hands on geekiness that he's able and or willing to do to install it and keep it running.

    Does he want to do pure lightweight online mac stuff and not wanting to frak with the os? 12" pb is a winner, hands down, especially if he can get the seller to come down on price. If he's got a small windows program or two that he's wanting to use, and is willing to put in the time to get the machine to dual boot, a hacintosh mini (or nano, whatever) is the choice.

    Not having enough distractions and aggravations in my life, I thought I'd hackintosh one of the newer 10" netbooks. After looking at the current crop, I choose the dell mini 10v due to its fanless operation, and its promise of tech support from the mydellmini folks for osx86. Like the machine, but even it's not perfect with its trackpad and anemic battery. (2 hours? Come on!) It's backup disks have a conventional windows install, so it promises to be easy to reinstall windows after the hd is partitioned.

    To muddle the water further, I installed ubuntu 9 netbook remix on it as a lark, and I'm really impressed with it. So much so that I'm undecided on whether I want to do a dual or triple boot install or just leave it linux. It's secure, stable, comes with capable software already installed, and makes great use of the screen to choose and use applications. After a slight learning curve, I'd rank it right behind osx in ease and enjoyment of use.

    Sorry about the thesis of a response.
     
  25. GeekGirl* macrumors 65816

    GeekGirl*

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    #25
    I have to say that is one I have always wanted after buying it new then giving it to my boyfriend who broke up with me after getting it.

    The one is a classic I saw one the other day at a Genius Bar and I was drooling.
     

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