Can I add a monitor and save my laptop screens life?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Figory, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. Figory macrumors member

    May 17, 2004
    I have a 17" powerbook G4. A few times a day the screen goes dark.
    I have to unplug and remove the battery to get it back up again.
    I'm pretty sure its the actual screen that is the problem, rather than hard drive.

    Its quite a lot of $$$ to repair, and I've noticed this on craigs list

    20" Cinema Display monitor in great condition. Serial #N530635SNAF.

    Depending on your Mac, you may need a DVI to ADC Display Adapter. Check out for more information - search by product number: M8893ZM/A

    Do you think I could hook this up and save my screen for when I'm away from home?

    Would I need a DVI to ADC? And are they $$$?

    Thank you for any advice!
  2. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    The issue I have with Craigslist is that people there are MORONS.

    You should ask the guy if it's an APPLE CINEMA DISPLAY, or APPLE STUDIO DISPLAY.

    If it's the Studio Display then you'll need an ADC, it it's a CINEMA then no.

    Don't think that just because he's telling you you'll need an ADC it's a Studio, the people there are that stupid. Ask the guy.

    Getting the monitor won't save your screen, but it will make it easier for you to use your machine.

    Lastly, how much is the guy asking for it? You can get decent LCD display's that are 19" 20" and some 22" in size for around $250 at any given day. Try looking at some Dells and Samsungs at and
  3. x86isslow macrumors 6502a

    Aug 10, 2003
    Do not go with the Studio Display! The adapters are annoying and expensive, and the unit is out of warranty. Get a nice, new (and in-warranty!) ViewSonic or Dell, which would have the added benefit of using a simple, inexpensive DVI-DVI cable.
  4. Figory thread starter macrumors member

    May 17, 2004

    Gosh... thanks so much for the advice. Yes the monitor is $160
    dont know if I could get it for less. But if I had to go and buy an expensive cable it would be pointless
    Thanks guys!
  5. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    Right, and the cable retails for $99 still. You could buy it used but then you could just go buy a NEW Dell or _______ monitor for the same price.

    So yeah, skip that one.
  6. Bacong macrumors 68020


    Mar 7, 2009
    Westland, Michigan
    My powerbook has been used daily for over 4 years and the screen isn't going dark. LCD screens usually have an absurd life, usually one that outlasts the hardware itself. So I wouldn't buy a monitor for that purpose alone, although I do recommend one because bigger is always better, and it's never a bad thing to have a monitor laying around if your screen does in fact fail.

    I snagged the apple DVI to VGA adapter for cheap on amazon.

    Used one says $1.38. Can't beat that. I display my powerbook on my 20" external monitor, which is a brighter and better screen. Also 5" bigger :)

    According to MacTracker, your Powerbook should use regular DVI like the cable uses that I linked you to. So definitely do that.
  7. MTI macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2009
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Actually . . . don't say that to all the Powerbook folks that have had inverters or the flourescent bulbs go out on their units . . . or to the iMac owners that have vertical lines and blank spots on their expensive displays . . .

    I didn't notice if the OP mentioned what gen 17" Powerbook he had, the initial ones had VGA out, the DVI model had a full sized DVI out, etc.
  8. michael.lauden macrumors 68020


    Dec 25, 2008
  9. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    The displays with ADC displays are old. Not worth it if you don't have the DVI->ADC adapter already.

    You can buy any LCD to use though.

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