Powerbook 12": What are the upgrades available?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by pullman, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. pullman, Mar 9, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2011

    pullman macrumors 6502

    pullman

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Location:
    '(,,,,)°l°
    #1
    Hi everyone

    Ever since I saw a 12" PB more than a decade ago I've been fascinated by it. I never bought one because at the time I didn't have the money for it but I'm now considering buying one just to have it (sounds odd perhaps but why not; it's a beautiful piece of equipment and why not save them for posterity?).

    I am not very familiar with Tiger and the earlier OSs and therefore wanted to run Leopard on it. I've read posts here and also articles at Lowendmac about Leopard performance on the 12" PB. It seems that performance would be "ok", at least for less intensive tasks (like video editing and encoding).

    So I'm wondering what upgrades (well, beyond adding RAM) are available for the 12" PB (processors, logic boards, harddrives etc) these days?

    /p
     
  2. Naimfan macrumors 68040

    Naimfan

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    #2
    You can upgrade the RAM to a maximum of 1.5 GB on later 12" PBs and 1.25 GB on earlier ones, using a 1 GB PC2700 RAM stick.

    The hard drive can also be upgraded to (I think) any capacity IDE/P-ATA 2.5" laptop drive.

    I don't know of any processor upgrades; you might check Sonnet's website to see if they have any.

    Also, video editing and encoding on a G4 is not quite what I'd call "less intensive" use--it can do it, but it'll be slow.

    And depending on the processor, Leopard will be OK--the faster the CPU, the better. Leopard on a 867 MHz G4 12" could be painful, though . . .
     
  3. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2008
    Location:
    Always a day away
    #3
    I saw the thread title and thought, "You could trade it in for a new MBP." :p

    Seriously, I think the only real user-serviceable upgrades are the RAM and HDD. Beyond that, you'd be doing some soldering, I think.
     
  4. pullman thread starter macrumors 6502

    pullman

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Location:
    '(,,,,)°l°
    #4
    Thanks for the info, guys. I appreciate it.

    Well I am considering the new MBPs too. Getting a PB would only be for curiosity, posterity, interest etc.

    /p
     
  5. Jiten macrumors 6502a

    Jiten

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    #5
    Its a bit pricy but a friend of mine who can't seem to part with his old iBook G4 bought this:

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/SSDMXLE040/

    Compatible with the whole range of G3 and G4 Macs and its a sandforce based SSD so its going to perform better then those cheap SSD/Compact Flash upgrades we see online. The drive is still on its way but I'm very excited and curious on how better this will make his iBook perform.
     
  6. Hrududu macrumors 68020

    Hrududu

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Location:
    Central US
    #6
    Not sure how you saw a 12" Powerbook over a decade ago since they didn't come out until 2003 ;)

    But seriously, they will hold 1.12GB of RAM in the original 867MHz models, and all the ones after than will do 1.25GB of RAM. For a short time you actually could get CPU upgrades through a company that you would mail the PowerBook to and they would upgrade it to 1.67GHz or something like that. I've owned both a 867MHz model and currently a 1.5GHz one. Go for no less than a 1.33. They have faster RAM, much better graphics chips, and more HD space by default. My 1.5GHz is wonderful in Leopard with the maximum RAM installed and its 64MB GeForce Go5200 graphics card. Probably wouldn't hurt to find a newer & faster HD, but for a secondary computer, 60GB is plenty for me.
     
  7. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #7
    What a shame that the late iBooks maxed out at 1.5gb of memory but the 12" Powerbooks maxed to 1.25gb :(.

    The largest capacity for IDE/ATA 2.5" hard drives are the Western Digital 320gb 5,400 rpm drive. They do make SSDs for the older format but they are more costly than the SATA drives.

    The CPU/GPU are not upgradable unfortunately as they are soldered. Can't really upgrade the motherboard unless you are replacing it with the same one or replace them from the same model #, you can upgrade a 1.33ghz > 1.5ghz motherboard.

    Any of this cost effective, no. But if you want a decent little living room laptop, they are great little devices. I'd also consider a last-gen 12"-14" iBook G4.

    Also note, the 12" Powerbook is also the worst laptop to work on if you need to replace anything. Just try upgrading the optical drive :p
     

Share This Page