contemplating an upgrade: G5 tower -> MacBook

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jfruh, Jun 12, 2008.

  1. jfruh macrumors member

    Jul 17, 2002
    Hi all-

    My current computer is a G5 PowerMac -- 1.8 GHz DP, 1.25 GB of RAM -- that's getting somewhat long in the tooth. I'd sort of dreamed of getting a tricked out 8-core Mac Pro, but it's becoming increasingly clear to me that (a) I won't be able to afford that anytime soon, (b) since I don't use any computationally intensive apps, I don't need such a thing, and (c) it would actually be pretty convenient to me to get a laptop. So, I'm thinking of getting a MacBook -- the 2.4 GHz model, RAM-ed up to the max and with the larger hard drive.

    I'm wondering if anyone has made a similar transition and can comment on to what extent the clock speeds for the G5 and Core Duo chips are comparable. Will I be getting the 33 percent boost that the numbers would lead you to believe? More? Less? How does dual core processing stack up against a true dual chip? And to what extent is any of that going to be relevant to me, who mainly uses the machine for Web surfing, email, and word processing?

    Also, I hadn't really taken a close look at laptop specs since the Intel transition, and I was sort of shocked by how little difference there seemed to be between the MacBook and MacBook Pro, considering the fairly substantial gap in price. As near as I could tell, the biggest difference (other than 200 MHz of processing speed) is the size; I don't mind the smaller screen, since 90 percent of the time I'd still be connected to my current keyboard/monitor combo, and the rest of the time smaller would be better anyway. Other than that and the backlit keyboard, is there some distinction I'm missing?

    Finally, I wonder just how slow and/or buggy Rosetta really is. Most of the apps I use are Universal, but I still have Office 2004 (and really don't feel like shelling out for '08), Adobe Photoship CS 8 (which I use for optimizing graphics for the Web, nothing too intensive), and an older version of Quicken. I'm willing to bear with a performance hit on these, but really hope they don't crash all the time.

    Anyway, I know this has been kind of rambling, but I'd just love to solicit opinions from anyone who's made a smiliar transition and has experience to share.
  2. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    If you don't need a dedicated graphics card (ie, if you don't do 3D modelling, video editing or play games) then MacBook should be perfect. There is a huge gap between the performance of these machines and that giant G5 tower. Just go for it, you won't look back!
  3. leekohler macrumors G5


    Dec 22, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    Well, you did miss the fact that there is no dedicated video card in the MacBook, but it sounds like you won't be needing that anyway.

    I have a last-rev dual core 2.0 G5 and a new 2.4 Penryn BlackBook. Quite honestly, I notice very little difference between the two. The G5 is much smoother with video editing/video card related tasks, but the BlackBook is slightly faster opening apps and such, and when I say slightly, that's what I mean. You will probably see more of a performance increase given the age of your particular G5 though. I should also mention that my G5 has 5 gigs of RAM, while the BlackBook has only 2. I'm sure that's making a difference as well.

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