Does the 12" Powerbook sport a Backlit Keyboard?

Apple!Freak

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Jan 11, 2005
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I was looking at purchasing a 12" Powerbook for travel purposes and in researching I observed that on Apple's site, they mention the 12" Powebook as having a "Full-Size Keyboard", while listing the others with a "Backlit Keyboard" status.

So what's the story, does the 12" have the backlit keyboard feature?
 

MoparShaha

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May 15, 2003
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San Francisco
No, unfortunately, the 12" PB does not have a backlit keyboard. It's really a shame too. I have a 12" PB and love it, but it makes me sore that Apple puts all the high-end features on the 15" and 17", such as the backlit keyboard, gigabit ethernet, firewire 800, and on the rev A and B 12", a slower bus speed.
 

tdhurst

macrumors 601
Dec 27, 2003
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Phoenix, AZ
NOOO!!!

How unfair!!
I can't believe Apple would put higher end features in the more expensive, larger powerbooks. I mean, come on, it's not like the 12" powerbook is smaller or anything. It could easily fit a notebook card slot on it!
Bastards!
 

dorqiekat

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Jul 3, 2004
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Abstract said:
Unless they made it thicker, they can't fit it inside. I've read that somewhere.
How much thinker? If it doesn't look like a D3ll or weigh a ton, I'm willing to take the thicker for the backlit.

btw, I love your sig. Where was that from? Or are you just thinking it. :p
 

blackpeter

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Aug 14, 2001
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I'm on my second laptop with a backlit keyboard and I can honestly say that if it broke today, I'd probably never notice. I don't know who these people are that desire a backlit keyboard, but I wonder if they've ever used it beyond those first 5 minutes of "wow."

It's a neat feature to make my PC friends drool, but I find that I'm usually in a well lit place -or- if I'm not, I can see the keyboard well enough using the ambient light from the LCD. Being that the 15" and 17" aren't known for their stellar battery life, I try to limit anything that would drain the battery faster. The backlit keyboard would be my first bell/whistle to go.

edit: Just to finish the thought, I'm currently typing on a 12" PB that I've been working on for a friend. My 15" PB is super jealous because it can tell that I'm pretty smitten by the 12's ultra-portable frame.

If I would harp on anything, it would be that in order to make room for a 56k modem (isn't this 2005?), valuable space has been taken that could've been used for an additional Firewire port, GBit ethernet, S-Vid, ect. But this is a small complaint.
 

Inspector Lee

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Jan 24, 2004
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East Lansing, MI
Actually glad they don't because I'd then have to take a long hard look at trading in this 15" TiBook and posssibly making a move.

Can't figure out why they don't offer it because it would do a lot to lay to rest all the quibbling involved in comparing a 12" iBook and a 12" AlBook.
 

dorqiekat

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Jul 3, 2004
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tfaz1 said:
I'm on my second laptop with a backlit keyboard and I can honestly say that if it broke today, I'd probably never notice. I don't know who these people are that desire a backlit keyboard, but I wonder if they've ever used it beyond those first 5 minutes of "wow."
I've never seen or used backlit in person which is why I want to be "wow-ed" :)
 

Apple!Freak

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Jan 11, 2005
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MoparShaha said:
No, unfortunately, the 12" PB does not have a backlit keyboard. It's really a shame too. I have a 12" PB and love it, but it makes me sore that Apple puts all the high-end features on the 15" and 17", such as the backlit keyboard, gigabit ethernet, firewire 800, and on the rev A and B 12", a slower bus speed.
What exactly is the difference between the 10/100 Ethernet currently standard with the 12" PB versus the Gigabit?
 

andrewfee

macrumors 6502
Aug 29, 2004
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Apple!Freak said:
What exactly is the difference between the 10/100 Ethernet currently standard with the 12" PB versus the Gigabit?
Gigabit is 10/100/1000, so it's just faster if you've got access to a gigabit LAN.

As for the backlit keyboard, on the 15" / 17" the light sensors are under the speaker grilles, so there probably just isn't enough room for them on the 12"

I doubt the fiber-optics would be the reason. I assume the 12" doesn't have the auto-adjusting LCD backlight either?
 

Apple!Freak

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andrewfee said:
I doubt the fiber-optics would be the reason. I assume the 12" doesn't have the auto-adjusting LCD backlight either?
Oh c'mon, the 15 & 17" PB's have self-adjusting LCD Backlights, too? The 12" better have this or its off with it's head.
 

dorqiekat

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Jul 3, 2004
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andrewfee said:
I assume the 12" doesn't have the auto-adjusting LCD backlight either?
Yes it does. You're talking about F1 and F2 right? Or are you talking about a different super-cool-only-15-and-17-has-it thing.
 

homerjward

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May 11, 2004
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dorqiekat said:
Yes it does. You're talking about F1 and F2 right? Or are you talking about a different super-cool-only-15-and-17-has-it thing.
yep, it's 15 and 17 only. its controlled by the same light sensor beneath the speaker grilles that controls the backlit keyboard. when it gets dark the display dims and the backlighting comes on. iirc, as i dont have one to test it on :p just experiences with friends' pbs, etc.
 

Apple!Freak

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homerjward said:
yep, it's 15 and 17 only. its controlled by the same light sensor beneath the speaker grilles that controls the backlit keyboard. when it gets dark the display dims and the backlighting comes on. iirc, as i dont have one to test it on :p just experiences with friends' pbs, etc.
dorgiekat is saying the 12" PB does indeed have the self-automated LCD?
 

deebster

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Oct 21, 2004
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tfaz1 said:
If I would harp on anything, it would be that in order to make room for a 56k modem (isn't this 2005?), valuable space has been taken that could've been used for an additional Firewire port, GBit ethernet, S-Vid, ect. But this is a small complaint.
It's the year 2548 here (really) and I still don't have broadband.

I think some people forget that just because *they* have it it doesn't mean everyone else does :rolleyes:
 

Rod Rod

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Sep 21, 2003
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Las Vegas, NV
appleretailguy said:
How unfair!!
I can't believe Apple would put higher end features in the more expensive, larger powerbooks. I mean, come on, it's not like the 12" powerbook is smaller or anything. It could easily fit a notebook card slot on it!
Bastards!
Nice sarcasm.

Gbit ethernet and FW800 wouldn't take up any more space. Just include a 9-6 pin adapter standard with the 12", and there you go, FW800. What would be the difference in components cost? My guess is negligible or zero. The lack of PCMCIA slot is understandable.

The biggest distinction between the three PBs should be screen size. The 17" has moved closer to the 15" in price and features in the past two updates, so there's hope. Right now, other than the screen, the only big difference between a maxed out 17" and 15" is optical audio i/o.
 

emotion

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Mar 29, 2004
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Manchester, UK
Apple!Freak said:
dorgiekat is saying the 12" PB does indeed have the self-automated LCD?

it doesn't y'know. (sat on one now)

i'd love a backlit keyboard as i'm quite often in places where light is at a premium (djing in clubs). if i had it tho it might turnout that i wouldn't need it.

i'd love all the features of the 15 in a 12 (ok a 13/14 inch widescreen). the 15 is just a little bit too big for me.
 

joecool85

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Mar 9, 2005
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Maine
rosalindavenue said:
The 12" PB is thicker than the 15" and 17". That's because the 12" has its origins in the 12" ibook.


I don't think it's that so much as they needed to make it thicker to accomodate all the parts. The 12" is 1.18 thick, 15 - 1.1" thick, 17 - 1.0" thick.
 

Abstract

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Dec 27, 2002
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The 12" PB is thicker than the 15" and 17". That's because the 12" has its origins in the 12" ibook.
^^I never said that wasn't true.

I said the 12" PB would need to be made even thicker than it is currently for a backlit keyboard to be fit in there.
 

Cybernanga

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Oct 27, 2004
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Essex, United Kingdom
tfaz1 said:
If I would harp on anything, it would be that in order to make room for a 56k modem (isn't this 2005?)
It's portable, so there may be times when you are away from your LAN/Broadband but still need internet access. Additionally, it gives you the opportunity to send/receive faxes, which can be very usefull when travelling on business. You could even use it as an answering machine, or for recording phone conversations.

There also a few bit's of hardware that can be controlled/communicated with, via phone jack, and the modem is also very usefull for this.

It doesn't take up much space at all, (I know, I've looked) and won't use up your battery if it's not in use, so all in all, considering the functionality you get, I think they should leave the modem's in there.
 

zach

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Feb 14, 2003
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Medford
To clear it up: The 15" and 17" PowerBooks use the same light sensor that automatically turns on the keyboard lighting to adjust the screen brightness depending on ambient light.

The 12" PowerBook lacks this sensor, so it then also lacks the self-adjusting screen.

But seriously, the keyboard is a wow thing. In the dark, the screen provides enough light for me to see the keyboard anyway, and while it's really cool to look it.. It's not that handy.

The adjusting screen, on the other hand, is AWESOME.