Question from downunder 12' IB v 12'PB

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
Okay so here is my question.
I am looking to upgrade from my Emac (800mhz,768ram,Sdrive)
To a more portable solution...but sweet Wilma Flintstone the choice between ibook and PB is a hard one. I have basically passed on the idea of a 14' ibook as I don't like the feel, and the size and price on a 15',17' PB is out of my league.

I am looking at either a 12' ibook Combodrive maxed out ram 80g drive and an external DVD writer.

Or

A 12 PB Superdrive with maxed out ram and again 80g drive.

I would generally be doing the following with it.
- Email etc.. general word processing stuff
- Light web work
- A bit of audio
- Light film work (nothing huge just some indie short film stuff)
- Some photowork.
- The occasional dabble at a game or two just to pass the time

I am having a big problem with trying to decide whether or not I really need the 64 video card. I am guessing that 32 is going to be left behind and don't really want to be left with a stoneage graphics machine.

I will probably be grabbing a usb mic for some audio work too.
And I will more than likely be grabbing this unit from the states as the exchange rate is favourable and they cost far, far, far too much here in NZ
So any thoughts greatly appreciated.
Thanks for your time.
 

iQuit

macrumors 6502a
May 13, 2005
517
1
Audio

BTW, not sure what models... but some portables have a built in mic.
 

budugu

macrumors 6502
Sep 8, 2004
433
0
Boston, MA
wirelesskiwi said:
I would generally be doing the following with it.
- Email etc.. general word processing stuff
- Light web work
- A bit of audio
- Light film work (nothing huge just some indie short film stuff)
- Some photowork.
- The occasional dabble at a game or two just to pass the time

I am having a big problem with trying to decide whether or not I really need the 64 video card. I am guessing that 32 is going to be left behind and don't really want to be left with a stoneage graphics machine.

I will probably be grabbing a usb mic for some audio work too.
And I will more than likely be grabbing this unit from the states as the exchange rate is favourable and they cost far, far, far too much here in NZ
So any thoughts greatly appreciated.
Thanks for your time.

Ibook. 12" with 80GB HD and you can install another 512/1 GB for (40/100$). powerbook is just too expensive for an old 64MB GC. Otherwise buy a 12" refurb powerbook with superdrive for 1150$. That is definitely a sweat deal but only 60GB HD. the only real advantage of the PB is a better fsb (i cannot belive i said that!!) over an ibook 133 vs 167Mhz, at those speeds 34Mhz is large enough. = 25%
 

budugu

macrumors 6502
Sep 8, 2004
433
0
Boston, MA
iQuit said:
BTW, not sure what models... but some portables have a built in mic.
All portable (except the mac mini :D ;) ) have a built in mic (ibook, pb, even imac). and they are reasonalble but not good! But ibooks donot have a line in!
 

iQuit

macrumors 6502a
May 13, 2005
517
1
My bad... You said 12" with SuperDrive... well first...what is your price range?
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
budugu said:
Ibook. 12" with 80GB HD and you can install another 512/1 GB for (40/100$). powerbook is just too expensive for an old 64MB GC. Otherwise buy a 12" refurb powerbook with superdrive for 1150$. That is definitely a sweat deal but only 60GB HD. the only real advantage of the PB is a better fsb (i cannot belive i said that!!) over an ibook 133 vs 167Mhz, at those speeds 34Mhz is large enough. = 25%
Thanks for that...still very jumpy about the 32 Graphic Card everything seems to be going 64, but if opinion is it adequate I suppose I should just swallow my pride...and sorry to show my ignorance fsb?
 

wako

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2005
1,404
1
IMO, if you think you are going to use the laptop in clamshell mode, hooked up to a external HDD, then I think PB might be a better choice. Other than that I dont see why you would need a iBook.

Although the iBook might not have as much graphics memory, it isnt really needed for the day to day tasks. Besides, if you want to do some type of editing you should be thinking of the 15 or 17'' PBs.

I personally have a 12'' PB. Only reason why I went with PB is because I am using the clamshell mode. Although I hear you can still use a external monitor and get a screen span hack, you cant close the lid while still working with it.
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
wako said:
IMO, if you think you are going to use the laptop in clamshell mode, hooked up to a external HDD, then I think PB might be a better choice. Other than that I dont see why you would need a iBook.

Although the iBook might not have as much graphics memory, it isnt really needed for the day to day tasks. Besides, if you want to do some type of editing you should be thinking of the 15 or 17'' PBs.

I personally have a 12'' PB. Only reason why I went with PB is because I am using the clamshell mode. Although I hear you can still use a external monitor and get a screen span hack, you cant close the lid while still working with it.
Fair call...I mean if I have managed to edit friends showreels and the odd short film project on my current emac. Then anything would be an improvement.
 

iEdd

macrumors 68000
Aug 8, 2005
1,956
4
wirelesskiwi said:
sorry to show my ignorance fsb?
fsb=Front-side bus. On laptops it's generally refered to as 'system bus'. This is the thing that passes data from the processor to the logic board to the ram to the hard drive to the processor to the logic board. Basically the thing that passes data to everywhere else in the system. If I'm correct. A fast processor is no good unless you have a fast enough bus to go with it. The difference with ib vs pb would be significant. :)
 

FFTT

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2004
2,952
0
A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
If the eMac is no longer covering your needs, this becomes a tough call.

The iBook has a faster processor, but the eMac has a 7200 RPM HD
if I'm not mistaken so you probably would not see all that much improvement going to an iBook.


If it were not for your desire to do film editing work, I'd say the 12" or 14" iBook would be ok, but the PowerBook's 64 MB VRAM and the DVI out and a faster HD would be worth it in your case adding RAM as well.

What I would do in your case is buy a refurbed 14" iBook to cover your portable needs and/or save up for a 17" WS iMac G5 and get a 12" iBook
later depending on the priority of your portable needs.
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
FFTT said:
If the eMac is no longer covering your needs, this becomes a tough call.

The iBook has a faster processor, but the eMac has a 7200 RPM HD
if I'm not mistaken so you probably would not see all that much improvement going to an iBook.


If it were not for your desire to do film editing work, I'd say the 12" or 14" iBook would be ok, but the PowerBook's 64 MB VRAM and the DVI out and a faster HD would be worth it in your case adding RAM as well.

What I would do in your case is buy a refurbed 14" iBook to cover your portable needs and/or save up for a 17" WS iMac G5 and get a 12" iBook
later depending on the priority of your portable needs.
Thanks all,
Getting some really good feedback here and it is really appreciated.
I thought I would flesh out some info to help try and get to a final solution.
I am guesing that I will be grabbing eventually a lcd screen to go with my possible portable. I currently have a spare free 17' crt screen. PB is sounding tasty. I know that for video editing I really should be grabbing a desktop. The only problem is that I to jump around a bit and really need to keep my electronics lean, mean and functional.
 

SummerBreeze

macrumors 6502a
Sep 11, 2005
593
0
Chicago, IL
The reason I went with the 12" PowerBook over the 12" iBook is the fact that I had an extra monitor lying around. Of course the fact that I do a lot of work in Photoshop was also a big plus for the PowerBook. The reason I recommend the PowerBook over the iBook so often is that it should last you a bit longer than an iBook. And....it's a beautiful machine.
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
SummerBreeze said:
The reason I went with the 12" PowerBook over the 12" iBook is the fact that I had an extra monitor lying around. Of course the fact that I do a lot of work in Photoshop was also a big plus for the PowerBook. The reason I recommend the PowerBook over the iBook so often is that it should last you a bit longer than an iBook. And....it's a beautiful machine.
So Possible purchasing Scenarios
1/ 12' ibook combo, Max ram, 80g, External DVD writer Dual layer (cheapest option)
2/ 12' PB super, Max ram, 80g (quite pricey)
2/ 12' PB combo, Max ram, 80g, External DVD writer Dual layer (around same price as above maybe a little more)

Dear God! This is a bloody hard one to work out...
Price wise I really can't extend more than US$1700 odd, it translates to around NZ$2500*. And on my tiny radio wages that's at the max of what i can afford plus this puppy is going to have to last a fair while.

*Interesting fact - this is five times what I paid for my first car.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,378
110
Location Location Location
You'd be a fool to buy a 12" PB when the 12" iBook is such a great deal in comparison. There's a screen spanning hack available, and so unless you're desperate for Audio line-in, and are willing to pay hundreds upon hundreds of NZ play money for it, then sure, get the PB. However, most people will tell you otherwise at this moment.
 

Marky_Mark

macrumors 6502a
Sep 30, 2005
810
0
UK
It's really quite simple. Buy an iBook. Much better value for money. Much more rugged too - I've lost count of the people in these forums who've cried when their Al PB got scratched/dented - life's too short! The iBook looks bloody cool and is built to last - and being in Apple 'signature' white polycarb, attracts many more admiring glances than my friend's PB.

Don't worry about the vram - it's doesn't make enough of a difference to matter.

Leave the lid open so it doesn't overheat, get the screen spanning hack.

I have a 12" iBook, 1GB Ram, 80 GB HDD (BTO) [I wanted 100GB HDD originally but the step up from 80GB is disproportionately expensive]. I use Photoshop all the time and it runs just fine.

When I was looking into this, I weighed up the 12" PB because I thought a Superdrive would be quite nice to have, but really, how often are you are you actually gonna burn a DVD? Do you need a built-in drive with you all the time? Buy an external and take the Combo - it's much better value - in the UK the difference was £200+, but an external DVD writer was £70. No brainer.

Job done.
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
Getting closer to a decision.

Once again, thanks for all the good advice. It is so sppreciated.
Think I may be leaning towards and ibook with exdternal drive...i will be saving a fair bit of coin that I can spend on the inevitable toys and extras you always need to get when you upgrade.
Plus if the ibook serves me well for a year or four by then I will be much better place to grab a more serious machine, I may have put down some roots by then to.
The only final quandry is the 32 vs 64 graphics card...in everyones opinion could this be a problem with programs in the future not supporting anything less than 64 or will I get away with it for the time expected to get use out of this machine?
 

FFTT

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2004
2,952
0
A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
As long as the system requirements of the applications you're buying today work on your iBook, you'll be O.K. using them for as long as you have your machine.

Unfortunately I can't predict how long the iBooks will
remain at 32 MB VRAM with the upcoming Mac mini update to 64MB VRAM.

I just bought my daughter a refurb 12" iBook for $799 USD.

I think it's a fantastic value at that price.

It will cover her portable needs all the way through
college without any risk of over investment.

Of course I would prefer 64 MB of VRAM and the DVI
out capability, but I can't justify the $500 difference
at this time.
 

Agent Smith

macrumors 6502
Mar 21, 2004
260
0
Toronto, ON
If you had to go with either/or, and all other things being equal, the bus speed of the PB tips the balance. Equivalent processor yes, but the bus speed just makes it zippier. My 1.33 Mhz 12" PB (upon which I'm typing right now...) is a fraction faster than my colleagues' iBook 1.42 Mhz. It's all about the bus! :)
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
"sigh" this would all be a bit easier with a quick lotto win...
Or maybe a great aunt passing away and leaving me money in her will...
Unfortunately neither will be happening soon.

Good point about apps though if eberything I use now, is going to be pretty much what I use in the future I guess I will be alright.

The 32 vram thing just irks me...grrr.
 

wirelesskiwi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 1, 2005
12
0
Wellington, NZ
Maybe I ask this question...

In a different way.
If you wanted a portable (hopefully new), preferred to have a DVD burner in the mix. Wanted to do a bit of what was stated in my original post, but had a budget of no more than $1700US (hopefully less). What would you put together to buy?
 

FFTT

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2004
2,952
0
A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
With the iBook, you could easily afford an extra 1 GB of RAM and that's going
to make your iBook run considerably better.
This also leaves room for extra software and other accessories you might
want or need.

My best advise is to go to the Apple Store and spend some quality time
comparing your choices side by side again, then look around the store to see
what else you might need then go for the machine that makes you happy.