Improving the Powerbook

JSRockit

macrumors 6502a
Aug 24, 2002
637
0
NYC
Originally posted by jefhatfield


and for two hundred more, a superdrive...and the whole thing is nearly a third of a pound lighter than the 12 inch ibook:D

for the portable side, i think apple has finally listened to what the market wants and gone under a grand for ibook, under two grand for the pro stuff, and now offers every size...and in the process, we may end up with more macheads who switch from the pc world
Exactly...anyone who is not happy is looking at clockspeed numbers.
 

Stelliform

macrumors 68000
Oct 21, 2002
1,721
0
I just bought a TiBook w/ superdrive and such last November. (I am a switcher) I am very pleased with my purchase. The $200 more I paid 2 months ago is the cost of being on the bleeding edge in my book. Looking at the line up now I still would get the same notebook.

(however I am bummed that I cannot get Airport Extreme yet. I bet there will be a version for my laptop later. Hopefully.. PLEASE?!?!?) :)

Anyway, I am impressed with the new Powerbooks. The 12" is a remarkable computer. And I might have gotten that one instead of the 15" given the option. Go APPLE!
 

GeneR

macrumors 6502a
Jan 2, 2003
708
0
The land of delusions, CA.
Originally posted by jefhatfield


and for two hundred more, a superdrive...and the whole thing is nearly a third of a pound lighter than the 12 inch ibook:D

for the portable side, i think apple has finally listened to what the market wants and gone under a grand for ibook, under two grand for the pro stuff, and now offers every size...and in the process, we may end up with more macheads who switch from the pc world
One could seriously hope. That would be waaaaay cooooool. It makes sense to me. Some people just want laptops to write, check email, etc. Others really want a powerbook! And at the same price, it's great to have more options...
 

jaguarx

macrumors regular
Jan 5, 2003
194
0
London
Gah i'm torn. I want the power of the 17", but i want the form factor of the 15". Damnit! Why couldn't they update them all?!
*sighs*. I guess i'm getting a 17", i'm sure i'll make use of hte extra screenspace.
 

will

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 29, 2002
179
0
How did they do?

How did Apple do v my original list of improvements (when I started this thread all those posts ago):


  • CPU No change - to be expected (roll on 970!)
  • Screen Wow, what can I say, we now have three choices of screen size! Max screen res is similar to the one I predicted.
  • Design and Build I haven't seen the new models in real life, so it's hard to be sure of build quality, but impressions are very good no more paint!
  • Graphics Nice new Geoforce 4 in 12" and 17". I am slightly suprised 17" model doesn't have higher spec version (4200 Go?).
  • Optical Drive They've made it faster on 17" model (2x DVD-R), and squeezed it into 12" model.
  • Ethernet and Modem I didn't see any room for improvement here, and Apple have wisely stuck with current conf (except 12" model which doesn't have gigabit)
  • Battery Life One of the few disappointments, new models actually have shorter battery life than 15" model. I hope Apple is working on this!
  • Camera This suggestion caused controversy, and Apple haven't introduced it. I still think it could be squeezed in unobtrusively (remember we're only talking web cam quality here). One to watch out for in future.
  • Hard Drive A little disappointing, still no 5,400RPM drives and max drive size is still 60GB.
  • Wireless 802.11g + bluetooth built-in, all you could ask for. Excellent move.
  • Ports Firewire800 on 17" model, and ports on the side (as I predicted), much more useable. Still no USB2, but I expect Apple will introduce this when FW800 has been rolled out across the range. Serious omission is DVI from 12" model meaning it can't be used with nice flat panels.
  • Keyboard Steve claims new keyboard is nicer to use (have to try it out and see) and the backlighting feature looks like another one of those great little touches. Shame it didn't make it into the 12" model.
  • RAM So I was a bit over the top about RAM (new DIMMs need to be available for Apple to serious increase RAM), but it's nice to see at least the high end models with 512M.
  • Price Pleasant surprise here, and my prediction was pretty accurate, we now have two models below $2000 and a well specced 15" for $2300.


In Summary
New Powerbooks look very good (physically and spec wise), the only areas I can really see room for improvement are CPU, battery life, and adding a DVI port to the otherwise excellent 12". Hopefully all the new features will make it into the 15" model soon (especially the paint-free aluminium case). By offering a range of screen sizes Apple should keep everyone happy. Now if only I could afford one :)
 

Wyrm

macrumors 6502
Jan 7, 2003
250
0
Toekeeyoe, Japan
The new books look awesome...

but (my 2 yen)...

2 batteries in the 17" should have been there - it is big enough. This was something the PISMO could do, and could drive an entire day off a power cord (not "up" to 5 hours - which is probably about half in real life).

Graphics - although better, I'd like to see the 4200 Go from nVidia. That's a big leap from the 440, and 420. ATI hasn't come out with a mobile 9700 version yet - but that should be soon?
How about something really cool, like an upgradeable graphics card? That would be an industry first for sure!

What ever happened to the dual CPU model (ok ok, more of a nerd factor)? The 17" enclosure should be able to hold it... maybe a bit thicker (I mean if you want a "LAPTOP" then the 15" or 12" are good sizes... but we're talking PowerMAC replacement!) and use a single CPU on battery. Of course I'd take a single 64bit 970 any day of the week.

I think they didn't get the airport extreme quite right - an 802.11g card can fit in a PCMCIA footprint, and would have allowed an easier upgrade for current powerbook owners... maybe this is coming?

The keyboard on the 17" should be bigger - I mean they have the space right? (NO FRIGGIN' PAGE-UP-PAGE-DOWN!) I guess by keeping the keyboard more or less then same format it cuts down on costs? But when has Apple been known to cut corners?

Sounds stupid, but what about a handle? You wouldn't have to cradle it half expecting your new computer will shatter to a million pieces if it slips out of your embrace.

----------------
Wyrm
 

jefhatfield

Retired
Jul 9, 2000
8,803
0
the 17 inch is designed as a full desktop replacement..and i could also see 2 processors in it
 

GeneR

macrumors 6502a
Jan 2, 2003
708
0
The land of delusions, CA.
I think Wyrm makes some very good points...

Originally posted by Wyrm
The new books look awesome...

2 batteries in the 17" should have been there - it is big enough. This was something the PISMO could do, and could drive an entire day off a power cord (not "up" to 5 hours - which is probably about half in real life).

The keyboard on the 17" should be bigger - I mean they have the space right? (NO FRIGGIN' PAGE-UP-PAGE-DOWN!) I guess by keeping the keyboard more or less then same format it cuts down on costs? But when has Apple been known to cut corners?

Sounds stupid, but what about a handle? You wouldn't have to cradle it half expecting your new computer will shatter to a million pieces if it slips out of your embrace.

----------------
Wyrm
I agree with Wyrm about the battery, keyboard, and handle bit. That, plus a bit more HD... It will be interesting to hear if anyone builds a mod box off of the 17"... say, a slim suitcase with a handle, expanded keyboard, more power, etc.

I think CNN.com did a story a while back about people in Japan doing these mod boxes with some impressive results.

What about a mini portable dock for your powerbook?
We have docks that rest on desktops, but what if there was a dock which had the handle, extra battery power, HD, etc... and which you could seamlessly connect to your 17" powerbook and take with you when you needed it? That way, you had options whether or not you wanted to take along the extra weight? Some days you may just take your 17" powerbook. Other days, if you are on the road, for example, you take the entire dock and PB?
 

jefhatfield

Retired
Jul 9, 2000
8,803
0
are there are third party docks out there for the latest apple laptops, within the last year?

i do know there is a dock out there for the ibook

the 17" inch machine is not all that portable but good for a mobile, sometimes moving it, desktop replacement from home to office

but i would not want to be a world traveler with that heavy machine

if i flew a lot, i would get the 12" inch model for sure
 
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