Powerbook G4

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by powerbookpro, May 3, 2010.

  1. powerbookpro macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2008

    I have an oppurtunity to buy a 15" Powerbook G4 1.67 ghz and I was wondering if ~$400 was a good price for it.

    It's mainly going to be used as a netbook (I have the original asus eee 701 and I want an upgrade). I figure even the old powerbook is more powerful than most netbooks, and runs os x leopard, and has a higher screen resolution. I know its a lot bigger, but my 15" macbook pro is more than portable enough.

    It has 2 gigs of ram and the stock hard drive.

    Is it worth it, or should I pass this up and get a new netbook and potentially run os x on it?
  2. weckart macrumors 601

    Nov 7, 2004
    Newer netbooks with the N450 chip won't run OSX very well, if at all due to the lack of drivers for the gpu. The problem with the Powerbook will be the dim screen, relatively poor battery life and the inability to run intel apps.

    Your best bet is probably an older N270 chipped netbook that will run OSX well. Some older ULV notebooks will do that too, but are unlikely to offer much in battery life, if that matters to you.

    The Powerbook is only really worth considering if you have some Classic apps that you still want to hold onto for whatever reason.
  3. Corrosive vinyl macrumors 6502

    Corrosive vinyl

    Sep 22, 2006
    I like the old G4 computers. They are solid and (obviously) last a long time. The 2 gigs of RAM is very promising. That said, keep in mind that the newest versions of software, including safari, OS X, and many others are not supporting PPC machines anymore. This includes bug fixes and vulnerabilities.

    What kind of netbook are you looking into which would be comparable to the powerbook?
  4. powerbookpro thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2008
    I'm thinking about the asus eee 1201n
    It has a dual core atom and nvidia ion gpu, which is basically a 9400m

    Reports are that it runs os x very nicely, with the only thing not fully supported yet being wifi and function keys, with wifi being easily remedied with the purchase of a ~30 dollar dell card, and function keys being negligable. Screen resolution would even be 1366x768, which is very promising.

    I was worried about the dim screen on the powerbook, but was thinking that I could replace the backlight? But then I'd probably invest more time/money than the machine is worth and an os x capable netbook would be more useful?
  5. seb-opp macrumors 6502

    Nov 16, 2008
    Im curious, why do you want to get a powerbook when you already have a 15" MBP which is the same size but faster? Wouldn't it be more convenient to just use one computer, after all neither has an advantage of being more portable :S
  6. powerbookpro thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2008
    I've had a couple scares over the winter when the sidewalk is all iced up and I've almost slipped and fell, and had my super expensive mac in my backpack when that's happened. I would very much prefer a 12" powerbook, but I haven't found one of those for under 400 dollars yet.
  7. Eric S. macrumors 68040

    Eric S.

    Feb 1, 2008
    Santa Cruz Mountains, California
    But as the OP said, it will run Leopard and software support under Leopard is just fine, at least for now. Obviously all PPC systems will be left behind as time goes on.

    And if you do want to run Classic apps you'll be forced to run Tiger, which would not be as good in terms of software support. But a lot of PPC users prefer Tiger as an OS, claiming it is more solid and more efficient than Leopard.
  8. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    $250 Dell Mini 10v. Hackintoshes almost perfectly. Just hope you have an 8GB flash drive at the ready. :)
  9. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    I got one of those for $20 at Walmart ;)
  10. powerbookpro thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2008
    Thanks a lot everybody! So I've decided against the powerbook, but out of curiosity searched completed ebay listings of the first-generation macbook pro, and a lot of the 1.83 ghz models are selling for under 500.

    For what basically amounts to a "beater" notebook, what would you do?
  11. Alex72 macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2002
    Los Angeles

    If you can score a Core2Duo version of the 1.83, I'd go for that. Unless the Core Duo model happens to be in immaculate condition. I had a late-2006 1.83 C2D and, for some odd reason, even with only 512MB of memory, it at times felt faster than the early-2009 2.0 model, sporting 2GB, that I replaced it with... It certainly booted faster, anyway.
  12. Santabean2000 macrumors 68000


    Nov 20, 2007
    I had a 12" PB, (which I gave away to my sister a year or two ago), and I loved it. But... PPC is just not worth it anymore.

    Save for a C2D MacBook min.

    Unless you are a collector...
  13. Deepshade macrumors regular

    Mar 22, 2010
    I've got one. Its a super design.
    One of the nicest designs apple produced. Interestingly its slab style with rounded corners is echoed in the new (alleged) iPhone.
    Case looks and feels more solid than the current MBP.

    Sadly the screen, having a flexible surface is always a concern.
    Battery life is non existent.
    So many new apps are Intel only.
    My sons brand new dual core pc laptop costs just a little more.
    For anything else but wordprocessing - it feels hellishly slow.

    On Apples obsolete list.

    Personally - I'd bite the bullet and buy at least an Intel MB
  14. craig1410 macrumors 65816


    Mar 22, 2007
    $400 would buy a lot of salt for your sidewalk!
    Or how about some spiked shoes or perhaps a padded laptop bag?

    Sorry, I don't mean to be sarcastic - I actually came into this thread to tell you that a Powerbook G4 12" is a great alternative to a netbook but then I realised you were talking about a 15" PB.

    I hope you get something sorted out.
  15. Eric S. macrumors 68040

    Eric S.

    Feb 1, 2008
    Santa Cruz Mountains, California

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