Making the switch, cheap [iBook content]

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by kevincme, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. kevincme macrumors newbie

    Dec 4, 2006
    Like a lot of people, I like my iPod, and I think I'd like to go all the way and give a Mac a shot. I don't know why I've never considered one before, just never been around them enough I guess. I'm a poor student though, so I want to do this on the cheap. Just get a little taste.

    I've been looking around, and right now I'm pretty set on an iBook G3. I think I can get one for under $300 - ~$200 being ideal. For that price point I think I'm looking at 12", 500-600mHz, ~256mb ram. It won't be powerful, but I only want it for basic stuff: web, office, listening to music, mathematica. No games, media editing, etc. Ideally I'd like to be able to lightly multitask.

    I know people are still happily using the G3, but I'm concerned if it will be powerful enough. I know I can get a G4 for right under $500, probably even around $400, but that is already more than what I want to spend - I already have a solid laptop (Thinkpad).

    Will the G3 provide enough power for a satisfactory experience and allow me to get the full feel of a Mac, or do I really need to be looking at a G4 here? A G3 I'm looking at right now is going to come with Tiger installed, at 500mHz and 384mb ram - I'm not sure that's going to be enough.

    Also, I've heard about logic board problems on the G3's? Anything else I need to be considering here?

    Any tips from those with experience? Or how about something to sell me :D

  2. mick4394 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2006
    Flyover country
    A G3 can handle what you want it to just fine. If you're just looking to stick your toe in, I'd start there, as there's not a large financial risk involved.
  3. jmckechnie macrumors member


    Nov 18, 2006
    I just did what you are talking about. I was looking for a cheap mac to take with me to do thing on the go. I opted for a G3 500mhz 256mb ibook. I've had it less than a week and so far it's been a blast. It does everything I need it to do; open email, light chatting, run word. For everything else I use my Macbook pro but for smallness (is that a word?) this thing does everything. I would highly suggest it. Couple of points though: Make sure you get some kind of warranty like 90 days...covers pretty much everything in case something goes bad. Also, don't be surprised if you get a crap battery. Remember these things are 5 yrs old, you aren't going to have a brand spankin' new battery. I picked up a Nu Technologies one this past monday and I'm getting around 5 hours of life. So with that said, go for it.
  4. livingfortoday macrumors 68030

    Nov 17, 2004
    The Msp
    Well, if you have a monitor and keyboard already, you may wanna consider a Mac Mini. The early 1.25Ghz G4 Mini's are going for around $300-$350, so you could snag a good deal there, and it'd be a LOT faster than a G3 iBook. Heck, you could probably get an LCD in the $75 range, so even without a screen, it might be around your budget.

    Just throwing that out there. My gf has a G4 Mini, and I loved it so much I got an Intel one.

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