G4 12" Powerbook hard drive recommendation?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Chubby Cox, Sep 21, 2008.

  1. Chubby Cox macrumors member

    May 2, 2004
    I have a 12" 1.33GHz G4 Powerbook that I'm looking to replace the hard drive...the current one (80 GB, 5400 RPM) has been in there since I bought it about 4 years ago and it's showing its age- random slowdowns and the occasional strange clicking noise. So, I'd like to replace it before it craps out on me completely.

    Here's where I could use some help. First of all, I don't need all that much storage space- I only use this computer for running Ableton Live and, between the software and samples and loops, I'm only actually using around 25 GB of storage (including the OS). Of course, I'm not opposed to having more storage, but I certainly don't need the "biggest drive" or anything like that- performance is far more important. Also, I used it plugged in about 90% of the time, so any battery life concerns are irrelevant.

    Naturally, I'd assume that a 7200 RPM drive would be the way to go, except for two things. First of all, it seems like noboy actually makes 7200 RPM PATA drives anymore, so I'd probably have to try to get a new-old-stock one from eBay. Secondly, I was reading some anecdotal evidence that some of the higher capacity 5400 RPM drives are actually faster than the 7200 RPM drives to to greater data density on the platter. Do any of you have any experience with this?

    And suggestions/recommendations/insults are appreciated!:)
  2. coledog macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2006
    Roanoke, VA
  3. California macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    Yes, I put the new 250gb Western Digital 5400rpm drive in my 1.5ghz 12" Powerbook G4.

    I initially replaced the stock 80 gig drive in the Powerbook with the Hitachi 100gb 7200rpm drive.

    This new Western Digital is at least as fast. I do not notice ANY difference in speed.

    But needed the space of the extra drive... So it's great.
  4. brguitarist macrumors member

    May 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    I can't make a comparison between Hitachi 7k and a newer 5k but I did replace my stock 80GB with a Hitachi 100GB 7200 and felt a significant performance improvement. I definitely saw these drives on newegg a couple of weeks ago, but as you said I don't see 7200 ATA drives there now :eek:

    Good luck.
  5. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020


    Apr 16, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    At least according to their website, Hitachi still manufactures 7K series (7,200-rpm) Travelstar PATA drives in 60 and 100GB sizes, but actually finding them is the tricky part. None of the major suppliers seem to have them anymore, which could indicate discontinued... :(

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