College laptop: iBook or Powerbook?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by crazyhorse634, Aug 18, 2005.

  1. crazyhorse634 macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2005
    Hi, everyone, I am new to all this Mac stuff, but have enjoyed the experiences that I have had with them so far. So, I need to find a laptop for college, but I don't know what to go for, the iBook or the Powerbook. I would like the 15" Powerbook, but I am not seeing much difference between that and the 14" iBook.

    I will be writing papers, storing and editing pictures and keeping my music collection in order to use for our swing dances.

    Any suggestions, Pro's/ Con's?

  2. lopresmb macrumors 6502

    Apr 29, 2005
    go with the iBook, its a better bang for the buck right now. FOr what it seems like you will be doing it should be just fine:

    powerbook has a better video card that allows screen spanning, a higher resolution display, and would be a bit faster, but for what you need, I imagine the iBook would keep pace quite nicely.
  3. DeSnousa macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    The iBook will suffice for your need it has plenty of power for those apps.

    The downside for me would be resolution of screen and not being able to connect the iBook to an external in clamshell mode.

    The pros, better reception and battery performance.

    With any Apple purchase i would upgrade the ram to at least 1gb now days

    Here's a great article for college students discussing what computer to get.
  4. Josh macrumors 68000


    Mar 4, 2004
    State College, PA
    I'd say go w/ the iBook.

    I have a 14" iBook and absolutely LOVE it.

    I just got it a couple months ago, so I haven't done school work on it yet, but I know it will be great to have for that.

    A lot of people recommend the 12" over the 14" since they are the same resolution, but I still say the 14" is the way to go. 14" is still pretty small, and the text can be hard to read unless you have emmaculate vision. There's no way I could be satisfied with the 12". Same resolution, but images, text, and everything is bigger on the 14", which makes it much more usable.

    Max out the ram, and you will have a great notebook. I've editted video, audio, and done a lot of graphics work and never was dissapointed about the speed.
  5. zap2 macrumors 604


    Mar 8, 2005
    Washington D.C
    ibook 14'' would be fine for what your doing but the Powerbook has more speed( and if you ever get any games the PB would be better) and if you have a limited buget you could have more add ons on the iBook then PowerBook)

    # 1GB DDR333 SDRAM (512MB built-in & 512MB SO-DIMM)
    # • 100GB Ultra ATA drive
    # • 8x SuperDrive (DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    # • iWork '05 preinstalled
    # • Keyboard & Mac OS X - U.S. English
    # • AppleCare Protection Plan for iBook
    # • 14-inch TFT XGA display
    # • 1.42GHz PowerPC G4
    # • ATI Mobility Radeon 9550 w/ 32MB DDR video memory
    # • AirPort Extreme built-in
    # • Bluetooth 2.0 built-in

    an iBook 14'' for 1,927.00

    or a PowerBook 15''

    # 1.5GHz PowerPC G4 w/ 64MB VRAM
    # • 512MB DDR333 SDRAM - 1 SO-DIMM
    # • 80GB Ultra ATA drive @ 5400 rpm
    # • Combo Drive (DVD-ROM/CD-RW)
    # • AirPort Extreme Card
    # • Backlit Keyboard/Mac OS - U.S. English
    # • ATI Mobility Radeon 9700
    # • 15.2-inch TFT Display

    for 1,999.00

    i would go iBook cuz between those Laptop with those specs the iBook would be faster and the ghz would only be a difference of .08 ghz(= 80mhz)

    Those price are before School discount( becuz you have to be IN college( i think) but im sure you could talk to apple about it.
  6. crazyhorse634 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2005
    So, can the iBook pan in and out (I don't know the technical name for this action) between different resolutions thus making the images larger or smaller?

    I have seen a powerbook that can do this.

    Does anyone know of someone who is selling their 14" iBook or 15" PB?
  7. iEdd macrumors 68000


    Aug 8, 2005
    Oh man.. so many of these threads. If you can justify the pb, get it.

    I like the 12" powerbook. You might want to wait til september, see what happens.
  8. Maxiseller macrumors 6502a


    Jan 11, 2005
    Little grey, chilly island.
    Go with the ibook.

    It is better value, but more importantly a lot more durable. Ive owned both and in a year my iBook looks a lot better than my Powerbook did in the same time frame.
  9. wPod macrumors 68000


    Aug 19, 2003
    Denver, CO
    go for the PB. the 14" iBook is useless (in my opinion, im sure many people enjoy it though, its kinda personal pref) . . . it has the same screen resolution as a 12" iBook so it looks bad. it also has half the v-ram of the PBs. (or 4 times as little if you upgrade to max out the vram on the 15" pb) which for practical purposes transelates into a PB lasting longer than an iBook b/c in a year or so 32mb of v-ram will be worthless while 64 or more will still be fine.
  10. 20rogersc macrumors 65816


    Jun 28, 2005
    Brighton, UK
    Go with the iBook. I'm really pleased with mine, and it will be fine for what you are doing.

  11. DeSnousa macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    The screen of the iBook is 1024 by 786 and it can be decreased to 800 by 600 and 640 by 480 however decreasing the res degrades the quality, besides those res's are low stick with the max res of the screen, imo.
  12. Deepdale macrumors 68000


    May 4, 2005
    New York
    Useless ... looks bad? Well, maybe it's time I got hooked up with a seeing eye dog because it appears to be just fine to me, and the many others who have continuing love affairs with their purchase of 14" iBooks. Live and let live. Having great admiration for your beloved PB is perfectly fine, but is it necessary to denigrate other well-received products in the process?
  13. AJ Muni macrumors 65816

    AJ Muni

    Aug 4, 2005
    Go with the iBook baby! i love mine....and hurry before the FREE iPod deal expires next month....
  14. Chrispy macrumors 68020


    Dec 27, 2004
    I have a 14" iBook and the screen on it is beautiful. I was working on a 12" powerbook the other day and the screen just seemed so small. The 15" powerbook is a thing of beauty and if you can afford that get it! However, if you don't need monitor out capability then stick with the iBook. Some testing on my behalf with WoW shows that the current iBook revision actually outperforms the 12" powerbook in WoW. However, the 15" powerbook will walk all over the iBook in terms of graphics performance. The 14" or 12" iBook will surely meet your expectations.... and give you an excuse to upgrade sooner ;)
  15. thewhitehart macrumors 6502a


    Jul 9, 2005
    The town without George Bailey
    1024 by 768 at 12" of screen space is not so bad. Any smaller and you'd need a telescope to see your stuff. At least on the 12". I'm assuming the 14" is pretty much the same thing.

    Anyways, I love my 12" ibook. It's light, no swinging doors and bits and pieces, good battery life, and loads more. You will love OS x once you get used to it.
  16. AJ Muni macrumors 65816

    AJ Muni

    Aug 4, 2005
    I agree with u cinnamon. i love my ibook cuz IMO, it seems like its more durable than the pb. I might get my girlfriends PB and my ibook...and drop them both off my balcony and see which one is stronger..... :rolleyes:
  17. PaRaGoNViCtiM macrumors 6502a

    Mar 18, 2005
  18. devilot Moderator emeritus


    May 1, 2005
    I currently own the 12" 1.33GHz PB and I'm going to be giving it to my older sister and I'm going to get the new 12" 1.33GHz iBook... reason being, the laptop would be her primary computer and I don't need the slight differences (ie slight speed bump, native screen spanning, extra ports, smaller/sleeker form, weighs less) and she prefers the feel/look of the PB. Meanwhile, I know I'll miss the beauty of my PB but I look forward to the iBook's better wi-fi reception, runs cooler, and the durability of a plastic housing vs. aluminum (not to mention it matches my iMac more :p ).

    If I had known about MR prior to buying my PB last summer, I would have gone w/ the iBook. Especially now that the gap between the iBook and PB is relatively small, unless you REALLY need the extra features, or really prefer the look/feel of the PB, AND you can justify the price difference, than go for a PB. But honestly, for most students' needs, the iBook would more than suffice.
  19. crazyhorse634 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2005
    top notch mac users

    You are all top notch!

    So, going w/ the 14" iBook, is it better to purchase it from the Apple Store, or will I get a better disc elsewhere?
    I'm curious: I found a factory sealed 14" iBook for 1149.99 w/ a $150 Mail in rebate.

    Could I trust this from a private seller?

    Also, it is 1.42 GHz, 60 GB, 512MB and Mac Osx I assume that means Tiger.

    Where is a good place to get Ram upgrades?

    ~Meg The "Applet" (almost owning an Apple! :D)
  20. iMatt mini macrumors 6502

    Mar 1, 2005
    Central New Jersey
    1. Online, anyone can get the student discount
    2. You just need a college ID to buy one in the store. My sister bought hers like the day she got her ID in the store. 12'' PowerBook and loves it (well, what she says)
    I'll be getting an iBook probably.
  21. ph0rk macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2003
    If it will be your only machine; do the 15" if you can swing it. The extra real estate is worth it, and the extra lb of weight will be good for you!

    FWIW, I took mine back and forth to school all last semester, which included walking a mile in the rain and riding my bike - not a scratch.

    treat it like the sophisticated machine it is (rather than a doorstop) and it will last fine. (A rigid laptop sleeve + water proofed bag would be a good start. Don't shell out 2k on a laptop then toss it in with your books.)
  22. spaceballl macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2003
    San Francisco, CA
    Use your educational discount. Also, call up your new university's bookstore. Mine (UCSD) has an Apple center, and they often run special promotions where they sell hardware even cheaper than the Apple educational discounted price. Have fun w/ your new mac!
  23. godbout macrumors regular

    Jun 22, 2005
    Montreal, Canada
    How would the iBook be faster if you consider those specs?? If you think that the GB of ram will make the iBook faster than the PBook you are mistaken (although it might be a common misconception that the ram will make the laptop faster in general, this will only happen if you are using memory to the point where you will have to page out to your HD) the PBook will be faster because of the 5400rmp hard drive, the faster processor, and better video card. Plus, with the PBook you get gigeth, FW800, WAY NICER SCREEN, it's a nicer formfactor(i.e. thinner, better keyboard (backlit), more scratch resistant), and IMO better built and sexier.

    I am not dissing the iBook at all they are great machines but they are not a Powerbook and when you sit down with one you know it!

    By the way, I think that you would probably be better off with a more basic iBook then the specs above for what you want to do. The iBooks are a great deal.
  24. macOSX-tastic macrumors 6502a


    Jan 9, 2005
    At the Airport. UK

    i just purchased the powerbook 15"er for college, as i think that this is the best computer in the price range ATM.

  25. switchr92 macrumors member

    Aug 2, 2005
    I agree with you that the powerbook will probably run faster in general, but the iBook would be the better buy in the example, with things that don't affect preformance, such as 100GB HD vs. 80GB, Superdrive, and you have applecare, which wasn't factored into the PB.

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