Some advice on what to use.

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by breakfict, Aug 29, 2015.

  1. breakfict macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2015
    #1
    I'm debating with myself over what to use.

    Basically, I have a PowerBook G4 12" 1.5GHz with the expanded 1.25GB of RAM, but its in need of some parts. It'll cost me about $30-$40 to fix it up, but once it's fixed up it'll look and run great.

    I need a laptop for both home and school. I'll be programming in Java for my classes, and I'll want older gaming and decent web browsing. I figured with some work that I could get my PowerBook doing most of these things, but then came to mind the idea of instead of investing more into the PowerBook, I could buy a MacBook Air instead.

    Now, I only have around $200 right now, but I could sell one of my computers I have laying around for about $100. I could probably work out something for an older MacBook Air.

    What would you do? I absolutely love the PowerBook, and it'd cheaper, and I also like the MacBook Air, but there's unsurites about both of them.
     
  2. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #2
    If you are doing programming in Javascript then the money is on the MBA.

    I love PowerPC but even with the best optimizations it's likely to be slow when dealing with JS.
     
  3. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #3
    Unfortunately, any Intel MacBook is going to be the better option when it comes to programming these days. Almost all of the IDEs and other development tools for most languages have no PowerPC support in current releases.
     
  4. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #4
    My son is currently in the local STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) program and is learning Javascript. The program has loaned him an HP Elitebook for the entire class year (everything he does for the class is done digitally on the Elitebook). That laptop has the ability to handle this. I can't imagine trying it with his Titanium DVI.
     
  5. 128keaton macrumors 68020

    128keaton

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    Jan 13, 2013
    #5
    You could make websites, just basic ones, with Coda (Panic, Inc). Great piece of software.
    I edit my website sometimes with my powerbook with Coda on it.
     
  6. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #6
    PowerPC Macs are beholden to Apple for Java updates, and they never issued any version of Java past SE 6, which was current as of late 2006!

    An Intel Mac would be a much better choice, preferably 2009 onwards as most will run the current versions of OS X.
     
  7. Aika macrumors regular

    Aika

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    Apr 7, 2006
    #7
    If that's your budget you should get a 2010 white unibody Macbook.

    You can buy an SSD and upgrade the RAM when you have the money but in the meantime it will serve you very well. They're still great laptops.
     
  8. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    UK
    #8
    Javascript will be a challenge on a PowerPC Mac. You're probably best picking up a newish Intel model.
     
  9. weckart macrumors 68040

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    Nov 7, 2004
    #9
    Have you seen the price of unibody Plasticbooks recently?

    macbook.png
     
  10. barbu macrumors regular

    barbu

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    #10
    Just as a point of order, OP said he is doing Java, not Javascript. They are not really related at all. Other posters are correct when they suggest getting the most recent Intel Mac as you can afford so you will be able to run a more recent Java JDK. Maybe you could find a nice Black Macbook. A Macbook Air would be a tremendous buy if you could swing it.
     
  11. Aika macrumors regular

    Aika

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    #11
    Bargain!
     
  12. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #12
    You're right.

    Shame on me for not paying attention to the original post. As you indicate though, the advice is still valid in light of the fact that Apple stopped Java updates at a certain point for PowerPC/Leopard.
     
  13. barbu macrumors regular

    barbu

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    #13
    No shame intended! I just mention it since the difference might affect the advice we give OP.
     
  14. barbu macrumors regular

    barbu

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    #14
  15. abundantmussel macrumors regular

    abundantmussel

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    Cork, Ireland
    #15
    Just to note too with a PPC the latest JDK you'll have is 1.5, at minimum for Java development you would want the 1.6 JDK if not the 1.7, I use a late 2006 macbook pro every day if that's any good there cheap to pick up these days
     
  16. Possumgal macrumors member

    Possumgal

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    N. Central Arkansas
    #16
    Another thing to consider is that you might run into trouble with some websites you're required to go to in classes, even with TenFourFox. For school, it would be better to have a more modern computer just so you don't have any problems with websites or hooking up to the school's network.
     
  17. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

    556fmjoe

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    Apr 19, 2014
    #17
    Your CS department may specify a minimum JDK version. I would find out what that is and if will work on PPC first.

    I use a PowerBook regularly for school, though not for Java and not with OS X. You'll likely need to make a few compromises. For example, collaborating on a document in Google Docs in Firefox is a painful experience because the page tries to refresh so often, to the point of being unusable. You may not need to do this of course (and it will likely work better in TenFourFox anyway), but I had no choice. I don't use Skype, but some professors may expect you to. I don't know the state of Skype on PPC OS X, but it could be a problem.
     
  18. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #18
    @breakfict The older Airs are still nice, and if you can, go for one. I recommend the late 2008/mid 2009 2,1 at a minimum, and make sure it has an SSD or put one in yourself.

    It will certainly offer advantages over a PowerBook, such as smoother web browsing and current OS/app support. It will also run newer versions of Java, as the PPC version is quite old.
     
  19. Macdctr macrumors regular

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    Nov 25, 2009
    #19
    @breakfict, you can pick up an 2008 Apple MacBook Black 13.3"A1181 Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4Ghz,4GB RAM,160GB HDD for under $300. It is more current than the G4 laptop you now have, not that it is a bad laptop (I have two of them in my collection) but as other's have said, you may need something more current for what you need to do regarding programming in Java. I would guess this laptop would be able to handle your upcoming work load.

    Here is the link to that auction: http://www.ebay.com/itm/2008-Apple-...M-160GB-HDD-/201415635105?hash=item2ee54eb0a1
     

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  20. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #20
    Keep in mind that later versions of OS X (10.8+) only support the late 2008 Aluminum MacBook or later.
     
  21. Macdctr macrumors regular

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    Nov 25, 2009
    #21
    Good point...
     
  22. hellothere231 macrumors regular

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    Sep 13, 2012
    #22
    If you want to go through the hassle of installing a Linux distro on PPC (I would recommend Debian), and you don't want to buy the MBA, I think the latest Java is supported for Linux on PPC. I just don't think it'll be fast enough, though.
     

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