Put your iBook12'' on steroids

Discussion in 'MacBytes.com News Discussion' started by MacBytes, Nov 8, 2005.

  1. MacBytes macrumors bot

    Jul 5, 2003
  2. Eidorian macrumors Penryn


    Mar 23, 2005
    I love dissection instructions. So much nicer than my Apple books. :D
  3. dcv macrumors G3

    May 24, 2005
    What a load of codshit.

    Yeah 'cause a SuperDrive and a bigger/faster hard drive are the only differences between an iBook and a PowerBook. :rolleyes:

  4. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040


    Oct 19, 2004
    Calgary, AB

    That's what I was thinking, video card be damned! I guess having a superdrive in a 12" iBook is a nice upgrade, but still, I wouldn't say it's a powerbook now.
  5. BruinJohn macrumors member

    Mar 19, 2004
    Bay Area, CA
    12" Powerbook upgrade?

    I'm not an experienced technician so this article is great. I've always wanted to do something like this but I was so scared. I'm glad someone has put up pictures to help us novices on this kind of tweaking. I have a 12" powerbook and I want to upgrade my combo drive and HD too, but I still have 18 months left on my Applecare and I don't want to pay $200 on top of a new Superdrive and new HD. When my applecare expires, I'll have to try dissecting my PB.
  6. Silencio macrumors 68020


    Jul 18, 2002
    I do have to say that the superior GPU in the Powerbook 12" does make a difference.

    Apple has refurbed 12" Powerbooks as good prices pretty regularly. How about $1,299 for the 1.5GHz/80GHz/Superdrive model? That's about the same amount of money you'd pay for a new iBook + the upgrades listed in the article.

    One day I'll do the hard drive + optical drive upgrades I've been meaning to do to my 500MHz iBook (oh, and fix the broken reed switch, too). No Powerbook killer there, but should still be a good servicable machine for someone in my family.
  7. eric67 macrumors 6502


    Oct 17, 2002
    France, Europe
    typical non sense answer...

    trust me or not; but adding a faster drive 7200rpm in a iBook 1.33GHz will leave the current PB12" 1.5GHz in the dust for a normal use. the PB will remain faster only for pure CPU-based tasks; but for the rest forget it.
    the Radeon 9550 found in the last iBook revision is faster than the GF 5200Go found since years in the PB12".
    I deeply think that those guys at macbidouille/hardmac know what they are talking about. They have astonishing references regarding mods and overcloking.
    so please do not judge without thinking twice ;)
    official comparison made by apple on the PB page. (despite the DVI video output and the audio-in there is not much difference, larger HD for the PB)
    Yes on the esthetically point of view, the PB looks better; but a boosted iBook (only 1GB additional RAM + 7200rpm HD) leaves it in the dust... it is quite impressive actually.
    to conclude, the last iBooks have also DDR333 SODIMM RAM; so if you want you can overclock your iBook to bring it to 166MHz bus frequency as in the current PB.

    the overall point of the article is that with less money you can get more; if you are ready to open your iBook.
  8. slipper macrumors 68000


    Nov 19, 2003
    i beg to differ about the 7200 HD being much faster than the 5200. barefeats has done benchmarks and its not much faster. On the other hand i do like the Radeon 9550 better than the GeForce 5200go, its so easy to overclock.
  9. dcv macrumors G3

    May 24, 2005
    That's all well and good... but, if you read the first page of the article...
    ...then it's quite clear that this person was using the previous model of iBook (1.2GHz, 256MB standard RAM, 30GB standard HD, no Bluetooth etc)
    This model didn't ship with the Radeon 9550 graphics card. Also had lower spec RAM i think. So my point was, that just by adding a better hard disk and a superdrive to an old iBook it still doesn't make it a PowerBook. Anyone applying this to the current revision of iBook is just spending extra money on components and voiding their warranty.
  10. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603


    Apr 29, 2005
    San Francisco
    Ok, so where can I buy a Superdrive? I've found the Mitshita, or the Panasonic drive is in the PB. Any good suggestions on where to get one? And a price if you know off the top of your head.
    FastMac.com I found a superdrive for $189.99 . Not a bad idea considering this combo drive in my iBook is a piece of crap.
  11. eric67 macrumors 6502


    Oct 17, 2002
    France, Europe
    so if I read properly ...

    yes it is mentioned 1x iBook G4 12" 1.2GHz or 1.33GHz...
    no comments
    if he probably used the iBook12" 1.2GHz model due to the specs, you should also compare it with the previous PB12" model, featuring only 256MB of RAM, Combo-Drive (no superdrive ....)

  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Yeah, pretty much. :p

    They're only talking about the 12 inchers, after all. And they said it's impossible to equip a 12" iBook to be the same as a 12" PB, so you could "buy a basic iBook 12" model and upgrade it yourself into a highly performing mobile computer." I think they were comparing previous models because the actual "experiment was done a while ago." If they were comparing new low end iBook model to a "new" 12" PB, I'd say the iBook would be very comparable to the 12" PB (if it isn't already ;) ).
  13. Chef Medeski macrumors 6502a

    Chef Medeski

    Jun 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    I would purchase a $12,000 laptop if it had 80 GHz on it. OHhhh wait.... SUPERDRIVE TOOO. Where do I sign up?
  14. eric67 macrumors 6502


    Oct 17, 2002
    France, Europe
    I think you missed one point

    I think barefeats has been comparing a 5200rpm 16MB cache HD vs. a 7200rpm 8MB cache HD; and indeed the 7200rpm HD is not that much faster than the 5400rpm HD featuring a 16MB cache.
    but trust me, such a boosted cache makes a big difference.
    the standart 5400rpm delivered with the PB id a 8MB cache. Double the cache and we will see a huge jump in performance; especially due to OSX making numerous HDs access requests
  15. Vinnie_vw macrumors 6502

    Sep 16, 2005
    the Netherlands
    No way, I'm violating my iBook this way :rolleyes:

    And wouldn't adding a faster harddrive decrease the battery-life, which I consider a key feature in a portable computer?
  16. DanielNTX macrumors 6502

    May 2, 2005
    So I went out and did it. I purchased a current stock iBook 12" and cracked it open. They are definitely not user friendly for upgrades compared to the likes of Dell/IBM/HP where everything is modular and can be accessed from the outside easily. I removed about 30 to 40 screws to access everything.

    I put in 1 gig of Crucial PC2700 ram, a Pioneer DVR-K05 8x8 Slim DVD Rewritable Drive (recognized as Apple installed/supported in OS X 10.4), and a FUJITSU MHV2080AH 80GB 5400RPM 8MB Cache hard disk.

    The notebook cost me $900, the memory $109, the DVD drive $85 ad the hard disk was $110 for a total of $1204 shipped & no taxes.

    For the Pioneer burner to fit, I had to modify the slot bezel from the combo drive by breaking out my dremmel tool and sanding off two small nipples that prevented the bezel from sitting flush with the new drive.

    I also made a boo-boo when removing the top casing from the iBook... I accidently ripped of the connector jack off the system board for the right speaker. I was being over zealous removing the cables that were connected to the system board. I should have been more careful using needle nose pliers to detach the cables instead of my fingers. Anyways, after being pissed and getting over my stupidity, I broke out the soldering iron (with micro fine tip) and heated it up and then soldered the jack back in place. I did a quick test by booting the system up with the top casing and keyboard back together to see if the speaker would work again and luckily it did. Then I removed everything and installed the DVD drive and then the hard disk.

    I would say the whole thing took me about 4 hours including reinstalling OS X. The hardest two things besides my mistake is removing the bottom casing (I used an old credit card) and keeping track of where all the screws go because they are different sizes and lengths.

    Overclocking a Mac mini is much easier then these upgrades. As a comparison, I rate the difficulty of oc'ing a Mac mini 3 or 4 out of 10 and the upgrading of an iBook a 6 or 7 out of 10 (make that a 7 or 8 if you accidently rip off a connector jack from a system board).

    Good luck to anyone who attempts this.

    I was almost tempted to figure out how to change the bus speed from 133 to 142MHz, but decided against it because I couldn't find any information on the resistor settings on the internet. The clock multiplier is alreadly locked at 10X which is pretty high, but I bet it would be pretty easy to bump the bus speed from 133 to 142MHz to be like it's bigger 14" brother.
  17. California macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    Well, I am having a local mac tech do this for me on a 1ghz 12" machine that I bought for 325 because it "had a broken trackpad" and bad combo drive -- and it was out of warranty so I felt like I could play around with it.

    The trackpad actually had just not been broken, just not plugged in properly. I bought a superdrive and a Toshiba hd 5400 rpm and 1 gig of ram. Also got new lcd case lid and new bottom case and some new feet. Will have bluetooth installed. Will let you know damage estimates from Mac guy, even though I have the plastic tools, too scared to do this myself unless his estimate is outrageous.
  18. DanielNTX macrumors 6502

    May 2, 2005
    It's not that bad to do. I think you can OC the 1gig version. I saw some references on the internet. I didn't have any plastic tools. I just used a credit card for prying the case apart.
  19. Megatron macrumors regular

    Nov 19, 2005
    So what are the results?

    So what do you think of how the machine feels now? A lot faster? A little? Faster than a PB 12"?

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