My First PPC Entry - PowerBook G4 12"

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Justin122, Aug 13, 2015.

  1. Justin122, Aug 13, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2015

    Justin122 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2008
    #1
    Hi everyone, after a few false starts I just wanted to make a post about my first PowerPC seeing as the community has really helped me make this great machine usable in 2015. I've always wanted one and it's great to see a relentlessly positive spirit around that has helped to elongate PowerPC's life span to almost ten plus years after its discontinuation. They don't make 'em like this anymore!

    I found this PowerBook 12" on an eBay auction and managed to get it for £50. 1.5gHz, 1.25GB RAM, holding battery, 80GB... It's in great condition - although I did have to swap out the keyboard due to a few shorted keys. Wasn't impressed with Leopard's performance so I downgraded it to Tiger and it works very well.

    Such a nice design.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here's to many more years of PPC computing. :apple:
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #3
    Don't forget to run eyoungren's TenFourFox tweaks!
     
  3. Hrududu macrumors 68020

    Hrududu

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Location:
    Central US
    #4
    Great little Macs. My 12" PowerBook still gets a lot of daily use and it is easily in my top 3 favorite laptops. Looks like you got a good one there.
     
  4. flyrod macrumors 6502

    flyrod

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    #5
    I agree. It's about as compact as you can make a regular size keyboard, track pad, CD drive and screen. The only think it lacks is the ability to hot-swap batteries like you could with the Ti powerbooks.

    Welcome!
     
  5. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2014
    Location:
    Lincolnshire, UK
    #6
    That's a great machine :)
    It might be worth persevering with Leopard - with optimisations on a PPC as fast as yours, it's not far behind Tiger for speed. I've found that installs from 'slimmed down' versions of Leopard on the web can be problematic - a full size retail copy is best.
    Having said that, I still have Tiger on my 12" but that's only because the memory is 768Mb.
    I did a lot of testing for video playback on my 12 and 15 Powerbooks and 12 iBook a while back and found the 12 PB to be the best - using XBMC, even 1080P playback was possible....so never underestimate these machines :)
     
  6. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    #7
    I had the 12/1.25/100gb and I loved it! It was the main reason I was all over the MacBook this year.
     
  7. Justin122 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Sep 14, 2008
    #8
    I did read that post last night, however I got confused fast haha. Are there any tweaks available for loading graphic-intensive pages faster?
     
  8. Justin122 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Sep 14, 2008
    #9
    That's interesting. SD video is getting a bit stale! It's not like Leopard's performance was poor, I just didn't like the choppiness of animations in comparison to Tiger. I'm a bit of a purist when it comes to software but the tweaks thread posted above has definitely made me consider reinstalling Leopard at some point.

    Does the iTunes Store still work with Leopard?
     
  9. three macrumors 6502a

    three

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2008
    Location:
    Washington State
    #10
    Welcome to the PowerPC community! Isn't the 12" PowerBook a lovely lovely love little machine? Looks like you scored a machine that is in fantastic shape too!
     
  10. Justin122 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Sep 14, 2008
    #11
    Yeah, Apple's smaller notebooks are really impressive at the minute. I would consider an 11" MacBook Air however I'm holding out for quad-core processing and a Retina display.
     
  11. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2014
    Location:
    Lincolnshire, UK
    #12
    Yes, 10.6.3 still connects with Store fine.

    There is a learning curve to all these tweaks to get the best out of your PPC - not a particularly steep or technical one but you do have to do a bit of digging around, research and DIY to get there.
     
  12. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #13
    You're not going to get any of that on a MacBook Air. You might as well go with a 12" Retina MacBook if you want a Retina display and small form factor, but quad-core is out of the question unless you go with a MacBook Pro.

    Enjoy the 12" PowerBook. I have the same model as you, except unfortunately with a dead battery. The keyboard is especially nice.
     
  13. Justin122 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Sep 14, 2008
    #14
    Why wouldn't they include those things in the Air?

    Thank you, it's been a blast so far :)
     
  14. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #15
    Retina will remain exclusive to the new 12" Retina MacBook most likely, as the MacBook Air is eventually phased out just like the plastic MacBook it replaced. As for quad-core, there are a number of different reasons, including inadequate cooling and too much power consumption for such a small/thin form factor.
     
  15. Justin122 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Sep 14, 2008
    #16
    That's a shame, I've always loved the MBA's form factor. It's baffling how they still haven't updated it to include a Retina display three years on after introducing it to the market, but I can see why they need to for the sake of product differentiation.
     
  16. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #17
    If form factor is your biggest concern, no question the Retina MacBook beats the 11" Air. Bigger display, but thinner, lighter, and smaller footprint. Of course there was a few sacrifices made to get there, just like what happened with the original Air.
    I agree, that 2010 non-IPS panel gets rid of much of the Air's appeal in 2015.
     
  17. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #18
    Yes. You can go ahead and use the easy installer I made for eyoungren's tweaks.
     
  18. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

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    Apr 19, 2014
    #19
    I have the exact same model and love it. It sees a ton of use.
     
  19. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #20
    You only run OpenBSD right?
     
  20. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

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    #21
    Correct
     
  21. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #22
    @556fmjoe How is the performance in comparison to OS X Leopard running WebKit and TenFourFox for browsing?
     
  22. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2014
    #23
    I couldn't tell you; I have never run OS X. Browsing with Firefox would be worse, possibly much worse considering how optimized TenFourFox is. I use Netsurf for most browsing and it's very fast. GUI performance is instant, but I'm using a very lightweight tiling window manager (spectrwm). There are many others to choose from that provide similar performance. The NVIDIA GPU in the 12" provides 2D acceleration only, so a lot of things would be slower if you start using it for graphically intensive work or run a heavier WM/DE.
     
  23. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #24
    Have you ever tried the Ubuntu MATE project? I am bit curious but am probably never going to run it on one of my computers as I am dedicated to OS X!
     
  24. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

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    Apr 19, 2014
    #25
    I never tried the MATE version, but I did try regular Ubuntu briefly on a DLSD and couldn't deal with it. I have used Linux many times on lots of different hardware and am generally not happy with it. While performance and hardware support are good, code quality and security are not and the system's organization is generally a mess and documentation is sporadic. OpenBSD is extremely clean, very thoroughly documented, and pretty secure. I run it on all my computers and my router and don't plan to use anything else. If I couldn't run it, I'd probably pick one of the other BSDs over Linux for similar reasons.
     

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