To Buy or Not to Buy a 15" Powerbook

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Pawstar, Jun 28, 2004.

  1. Pawstar macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2004

    In the past few months I have been considering to either upgrade my aging computer or laptop (both being x86). Seeing how cool the 15" Al PB's look I was swaying into getting a 1.5G BTO one (no SD). I was really hoping for a G5 PB ... but thats a no go. Now with the fact that Tiger will be 64 bit (so it seems that future software upgrades won't be happening) I am wondering if it is worth investing in the very near future in a PB or to upgrade my x86 hardware /(ducks flames). Being a student with only enough money saved for one major purchase, what would you folks recommend?


    Current owner of a Crapaq 700 POS^H^Hresario :mad: :mad: :mad:
  2. TheMac19 macrumors regular


    May 13, 2004
    I was in a similar situation, trying to hold out for the G5 powerbook. Then when Apple just updated the g4 powerbook, I decided to go for it. (I just got a 15" BTO pb...) I love it - couldn't be happier. And just like everybody else on here says, I wouldn't want to have the first generation G5 powerbook. (well I'd WANT it, but not the probable issues it might have...) think about it this way- if you go for the 15" powerbook now, you're getting a machine that apple has spent years perfecting.

    just my two cents, but my new powerbook is grrreat!
  3. FasterSoonerNow macrumors member

    Jun 14, 2004
    Does anyone know if the current edition Powerbooks will be able to run Tiger when '05 comes around?

    It's really kinda sucks that you could spend say 3 grand on a laptop now that won't be able to run their new operating system a year down the road.
  4. furrina macrumors regular

    Mar 31, 2004
    In tha 212
    Well, considering my Pismo g3 from 2000 ran panther just fine, my guess would be yes.
  5. djkny macrumors 6502

    Sep 30, 2003
    Just be wary of the AL warping and "ripples" particularly over the optical drive. I've looked at over 8 15" powerbooks now. All have "bent" aluminum by the optical drive (the strip that runs above it).

    Annoying beyond belief....
  6. Vanilla macrumors 6502a

    Mar 19, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    Just to add my two pennies worth...I prevaricated for an eternity over whether to stump up the cash for a G5 or go for a Pbook. In the end I forced myself out of the house, went down to my local reseller and came out with a PowerBook 1.5ghz 17" with 1GB Ram. I went the 17" route as I am not a road warrior per se, I need the screen real estate, but don't have the space for a full desktop setup at home, plus on occasion its nice to be able to take it with me to client sites. The 17" is essentially a portable desktop rather than a fully fledged portable - which the 15" is the largest version of - and as such it fitted the bill perfectly.

    I have to say I am ecstatic with it so far. It connects seamlessly to a windows network in the office, the OS is rock solid, the superdrive is brilliant, the speed is great for everything I throw at it, the facility to bluetooth my mobile to the computer is really cool and the screen is drop dead gorgeous, bar the fingerprints where I and my friends have been pawing at it ;-) This will last me a good number of years at which point I'll come back into the market and buy a G5 version that by then will be a mature version B/C.

    Seriously IMO just do it. You will not regret it.
  7. Bilvox macrumors member


    Jan 29, 2004
    oh yes

    Hey Guys,
    Been a lurker since my purchase of my 15inch powerbook.
    but I must chime up here... this is the best purchase I think I could have possibly made.
    I upgraded the hard-drive speed and went with 512mb 1chip so I can upgrade to 1gb eventually in the choices on the apple store.
    The speed, the quality and the sheer power I have for multimedia applications and various other ones is unmatched... the multiple live tracks I can do for garageband is so conveinient and important being a musician. The speed of video production on this makes my computers at work seem lacking....
    so you think you shouldnt go for it...
    well, believe me you will not be sorry if you obtain one of these bad boys...
    The power, the ease and the intelligence of the computer surprises and pleases me all the time. I take it where ever I go and the versatility of it is still being revealed to me....
    good luck mate...
  8. mac_gal macrumors member

    Jun 23, 2004
    Agreed ... I love my new Powerbook too. I was also considering waiting for a G5, but I didn't because:

    (1) This is the third revision of the Powerbook line -- all previous problems (battery life, heat, white spots, keyboard rubbing on screen) seem to be resolved

    (2) The first G5 PB will have issues.

    (3) Do you REALLY need the power of a G5 when you're on the go?

    All of this convinced me, it's time for a Powerbook, now.

    BTW, Tiger will support 32 bit machines.
  9. Pawstar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2004
    While I don't NEED the power of a G5 I am hoping that the investment that I undertake will be worth the money. After all I can get a Amd 64 3000+ laptop for ~$2200 CAN which is ~$500 less than the PB and yet offers far superior computing performance (disregarding the os). This would be my first major mac purchase (yeah I got an old 7500 PPC for next to nothing some time ago, but that was just to fool around with)

    Its good to know that Tiger will run ... I wonder if software companies will do two versions of their programs ..

    Yeah ... I am a little warry of issues, especially after dealing with the crapaq that I got (Yes I did have white spots on my screen {apple products aren't the only ones that have/had this problem}, power supply went, frying charging circuit & ruining the battery somewhat, sound card records like $#!+) ... so I do hope that whatever I upgrade to won't be issue prone.

    A little OT: is there any utilities out there that will create a "start" button style program launcher? I have read that the apple menu in OS X is no longer clustomizable and coming from a Linux & Winblows background I'll need/want to have something familiar (start, gear, foot, etc).
  10. iChan macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2003
    Dublin, Ireland.
    the most annoying thing about the two 15" PB and two 12" PB's i've had is the annoying way the charger keeps breaking... i think i might be getting power surges in the house, although i'm not sure because i have a surge protector... hmmm

    the hinge gets very very tight and sometimes after a few hours and you go to close the screen, there is a very loud CLACK noise. disturbing...

    the right hand side palm rest of my newest PB has black dots on it... this is corrosion.

    the heat of the area makes your hand sweat and the sweat corrode the alluminium... you have been warned... get an external keyboard for when you are at your desk.
  11. thecombatwombat macrumors member

    Mar 15, 2004
    God yes go for it.

    My 15 inch powerbook is just now 6 months old, it's the 1.25. I love it, probably unhealthily.

    Go for it. No it's not a G5 but does anything but the hype machine tell you it really needs to be? It's still plenty fast, will be a quality laptop for much longer than your 700 desktop managed to be on top of things.

    As for running tiger, I'm pretty sure that cat will even run on older g3s. Not only that, but Core image even supports the powerbook's current graphics card, there's no part of Tiger I'm aware of that the 15 inch won't kick along with just fine.

    Go for it.
  12. mikeyfern macrumors member

    Mar 3, 2004
    According to, Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger Developer Preview requires a PowerPC G3, G4 or G5 processor, a DVD drive, built-in-FireWire, 128 MB of RAM and 2 GB of disk space.
  13. furrina macrumors regular

    Mar 31, 2004
    In tha 212
    use a mouse and keyboard to keep it cleaner longer

    I use an external (BT wireless) keyboard and mouse partly b/c I use it in clamshell mode with another monitor sometimes but also when I don't, to keep it clean. Using a mouse is so much easier for me to use than a stupid trackpad and it really saves wear on the trackpad. I like this keyboard better too, I'm kind of a keyboard fanatic and in general i find laptop keys too tight. But it keeps the PB itself in great condition.
  14. 512ke macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2003
    Well, no machine is cooler than a PB. My personal fav is the 15".

    However, since you're a student looking to get the most for your money, you might consider...

    iBook 14" DVD burner airport bluetooth. It's what I bought. A LOT cheaper than a 15" PB. A bit slower. But pretty dang fast. Live tracks in GB. Digital editing works fine. Holds lotsa memory. Save $700 and use it to help buy yourself a G5 PB when they come out (and are stable).

    Just my 2 cents. That's a lotta 2 cents, $700.
  15. DJY macrumors 6502a


    Dec 20, 2003
    Canberra AUST
    I ummed and ahhed for ever about Mac and particularly Powerbooks...

    I contemplating switching on and off a few times over several years...
    but no longer!
    I bought a 17" Powerbook last week - and initial impressions - WOW!

    I knew they looked great.
    I'd played on the surface with Macs and Powerbooks in the shops, and at mates house...
    but after owning my own - I am becoming more and more impressed every day!

    Love it! can't believe I didn't listen to Mac mates years ago now!
    Just Do It!

    A mate bought the latest 15" two weeks before I bought my 17" and both are amazing machines!
    you won't regret it!

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