Average Life of Notebooks

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by w00143881, Jul 31, 2008.

  1. w00143881 macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008
    I tried searching this through google and all i could find is average BATTERY life of notebooks. If there is already a thread on this, my bad.

    I was wondering what the average hardware life of a notebook is. Of course, each case is going to be different and how bad you abuse it and how often you use it will also factor in but in general...

    I have the last model 15in Powerbook G4. I've upgraded it to 2GB of RAM couple months ago and applecared for a new battery. It seems perfectly fine with an exception of the screen flashing a white ish color everyone it can't process something (going to the top right corner for my all windows magic corner when they're no open applications or pressing delete/clicking else where when it prompts me to answer a question like "Do you really want to delete this song from your itunes library).

    How long can i hope for this to last me? What is most likely the first thing to go and with regular use and minimal abuse, is there a "best way" to extend the life of my computer?

    Finally, should I try to sell it on ebay for about 500-600 and use it to purchase a lowend macbook or just live this computer out?
  2. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Are you asking for computer life or battery life, 'cause you mention both?

    Battery life: 4-4.5 hours normal use with WiFi
    Computer life: Well this one is new, but I have a laptop with Pentium 3 that's still running well.
  3. w00143881 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008
    Not battery life - sorry. I can just keep buying those!

    I want to know how long i can expect or hope my computer to run for before i need to get a new one. Especially this model if anyone can help me with that.
  4. skye12 macrumors 65816


    Nov 11, 2006
    Austin, Tx
    I think an apple laptop will last 8-10 years. You'll certainly likely to have to replace the battery and hard drive.

    The bigger question is how long do you WANT to use one with technology
    functionally leaving you behind after about 5-6 years.
  5. iToaster macrumors 68000


    May 3, 2007
    In front of my MacBook Pro
    With regular advances in software, you can probably expect a useable life with the most current software running of 3-5 years. The actual life of the components is often much greater than that... I've got a PowerBook G3 from '98 still happily chugging along on OS 9.2... though the battery is long dead.
  6. winninganthem macrumors 6502a


    Jun 10, 2008
    I have a clamshell iBook from about 10 years ago that still works fine.

    Do I want to use it? Not really. It still works though.
  7. IBradMac macrumors 68000


    Jun 27, 2008
    Good point. I know I have an older PC and it is a turd! Not because its a PC, but because the technology has been dusted!
  8. Hrududu macrumors 68020


    Jul 25, 2008
    Central US
    I've got a 233MHz Powerbook G3 that still runs great, and a Clamshell iBook that still runs alright. I think as long as its taken care of they'll last for a long time. I had a Powerbook 145b that was still running when I got rid of it in 2005. Whether or not its still practical to use the laptop 10 years later is debatable.
  9. Neil321 macrumors 68040


    Nov 6, 2007
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    One of my MBP is a first Rev and it's still rocking
  10. DiamondMac macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2006
    Washington, D.C.
    I am the type who likes to update his stuff every few years so I like to get 3-4 years out of it before I get a new one

    I am about 2 years into this MBP but already am going to upgrade to the newer MBP when it comes out.

    I plan on keeping the current one for backup which I still consider valuable in a worst case scenario
  11. raymondu999 macrumors 65816

    Feb 11, 2008
    haha... talk about lifespans... My BOSS still has a Rev. A Core Duo MBP (the 2.0GHz one, before they released 2.16) and it's still going... He has a crack going across the upper right hand corner of the screen, from top left to bottom right, but in the top right corner... Other than that, it's still going strong...

    Heck, I have a better laptop than my boss!! Darn!

    But really, Macs have MUCH greater software lifespan in my opinion. They don't really slow down as time comes by. The hardware too... unless you really drop it off a cliff or something :p
  12. gwerhart0800 macrumors 6502

    Mar 15, 2008
    Loveland, CO
    At a corporate level, my company replaces all laptops on a 3 year refresh cycle. Since I am stuck with Dell products for work laptops (soon to change), I have found that they are somewhat "worn out" in 3 years. For the Dell laptops (D5XX series), I typically have the MB replaced 1-2 times in 3 yrs and the keyboard replaced 2-3 times. One of the Dell service techs actually said ... "You use this as your primary system? If so, you should get a dock and use an external keyboard ... these systems were not made to be used that much."

    The batteries typically last 2-3 years before they no longer hold enough of a charge to make it on a coast-to-coast flight. (This is using the 2 battery capability of the D5XX series.)

    I have just talked my boss into getting MBP systems for myself and a co-worker because one of the sales guys with a MBP showed that via VMware Fusion, he can run ALL of our systems in VMs for demos to customers. This sales guy had tried the same thing on a Dell with the same 2.6Ghz CPU and 4GB memory running WinXP and it could not do it.
  13. MattKanzler macrumors member

    Aug 1, 2008


    Totally correct. Your laptop could last another 10 years or so if you wanted it to and really took good care of it. But the real question is do you want to be that far behind with all of the innovations apple will continue to have to offer?
  14. viggen61 macrumors 6502

    Jul 24, 2002
    New Jersey
    I'd think the biggest factors are:

    1) how well it is cared for (is it in & out of the bag multiple times a day, or does it sit on a desk, and only go out occasionally)
    2) what "new" applications do you use that may require new hardware
    3) how much RAM do you need? Newer laptops (and desktops) generally accept more than older models.

    I think the biggest factor that you might run into with a PB G4 is that at some point, the new OS won't run on PowerPC chips. Leopard may be the last version that will run on that older hardware.

    For me, I've found that, more often than not, I end up running up against RAM limits more than anything else.

    Hardware wise, if you take good care of it, it should last you years. My Pismo, bought in 2001, still runs, though it's been on Hiatus the past 18 months since I bought my MBP.

    On the other hand, if you can afford to buy a new one, it can't hurt to offset the new machine's price with a PB G4 that still has some value. If you really can get $600 for yours, you could, potentially, get a refurbished MBP from the Apple Store, for $1,699, effectively buying it for the price of the low-end MacBook!

  15. WillJS macrumors 65816


    Jan 6, 2007
    FWIW I've taken great care of my Macbook and I've had it for almost two years with no problems.. I expect it to last me another 2 or maybe 3 before I purchase another one for college.
  16. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

    Jan 9, 2008
    It really depends on how well you take care of it. I treated my last Toshiba laptop like crap.... carried it out in the rain (yep, uncovered pretty much), threw it against the wall a couple times *cough*, and dropped it a bunch.

    It lasted three years before it finally began to have trouble booting.... then staying on... then finally refused to stay on without restarting. Which is why I now need a new laptop.

    However, my Beige G3 (heavily upgraded, admittedly) has never given me a single problem. Every single component is still working great. I still enjoy using it... more so than any of Apple current machines, including Core 2 iMacs and MacBooks.

    Apple Hardware... (perhaps particularly older Apple hardware) tends to run forever, with a few exceptions.

    I have to admit though.... some people are talking about how they've "still got" revision A MacBook Pros that are "still running.." I'd be rather shocked if they weren't. Two and a half years isn't a particularly long time, is it?

    Just take care of it, and don't do anything stupid. :)
  17. ViViDboarder macrumors 68040


    Jun 25, 2008
    What's wrong with the first revisions? I've had mine since week 20 (I think still first Rev, not totally sure) It's only been 2 years!!! In any computer lifespan I think that's still young. In my experience, building and upgrading computers, they last about 4 years until they are "outdated" completely. Mine generally function WELL past that (P4 desktop I built about 8 years ago running like new!) because I keep them propperly cooled and maintain the harddrives well.

    My MBP is my first mac and my first laptop, but I've seen people with mac laptops lasting for SO LONG!

    So I don't get why it's such a big deal that a 2 year old MBP is still rocking. I plan on using mine stock for another year (until my apple care dies) and then modding it with a bigger HDD and HiDef screen.
  18. HandleVandal Guest


    Jan 15, 2008
    I think you pretty much have your answer, but I'll throw my experience in here as well.

    My right-hand laptop is a G3 900mhz iBook, purchased in August 2003 for my senior year in college. 5 years later and it still runs like a champ! I've upgraded the HD, memory, and OS (it runs 10.4.11) but other than that, it's been smooth sailing repair-wise.

    (now watch the logic board fail tomorrow)

    It handles everything I need on daily basis (Firefox, Adobe CS 2, iMovie, VLC, iTunes, Audacity) smoothly but admittedly, I've noticed I'm coming up against some brick walls in terms of the processor speed. More things these days require at least G4 and often Intel. That alone is the only reason I'm considering upgrading sometime before the end of the year.
  19. gr8bob macrumors regular

    May 16, 2008
    I can't vouch for Apple's (or at least, Apple fan-boy's) reliability claims anymore now that my MacBook Pro is crapping out every so often with the issues from graphical glitches to system freezes. Two (2) brand new units, including one logic board replacement and yet the problems still persist had done nothing be giving me a bad impression towards how 'reliable' are Apple these days.

    Aside from that, I still have an iBook G4 (can't remember if it's the last or second last revisions) that is still running and alive, doing its job perfectly as I handed it down to my younger brother for his school work.

    Seems like Apple is going south. Literally. :rolleyes:
  20. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

    Jan 9, 2008
    From what I've heard and seen, I tend to agree, though of course I've only heard anecdotal evidence, and no first-hand experience with current Macs other than my sister's MacBook (which, lol, had its power cord die in the first week).

    It does seem that the quality and ruggedness of Macs has gone downhill since the switch to intel... but on the other hand, they're no longer responsible for much of the hardware anymore, so you can't entirely lay the blame on Apple, since they don't make the motherboards.
  21. 2112 macrumors member

    May 31, 2002
    frankenstein - my tiBook

    My 2003 1GHz TiBook is my everyday workhorse and will finally be left behind with the release of 10.6 Snow Leopard, which (if rumors are true) will be Intel-Only.

    I will replace it with a new MacBook Pro as soon as the Montevinas are released, and frankie will become a dedicated "piano" (hooked to a M-Audio Keystation 88es), so I'll be using it for at least a couple more years.
  22. Neil321 macrumors 68040


    Nov 6, 2007
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    Nothing, like i said it's still rocking, at present it's the oldest working one i own so it's the only one i can relate too, i do have a performa 450 but that crapped out a couple of years ago, i couldn't put that now could i ??
  23. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    Well in this case the current gen mbp life span is anywhere from 1-3 years.
  24. RainForRent macrumors 6502


    May 31, 2006
    Greenville, SC
    I have a 1.83, and I still think it's a great computer. Still looks brand new. I really like my computer!
  25. Coldwater macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2008
    I know I have a Pentium II around here somewhere that still works fine, can't use it for anything that I want to be done by this week but it still works, and on the desktop side I have a 400 Mhz beast of a computer as my backup that still runs nearly 11 years later, though it's showing its age by "loosing its memory" aka randomly deleteing things when it feels like it. If I were to replace the (10 GB) hard drive, it would be as good as new!

    It depends on if you mean "It still turns on" life or "It's still useful" life.

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