to superdrive or not to superdrive?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Ja Di ksw, Nov 6, 2003.

  1. Ja Di ksw macrumors 65816

    Ja Di ksw

    Apr 9, 2003
    Hi all, I've finally decided that my next computer is going to be the 15" Powerbook. One question, though. As someone who would ONLY use the DVD burner to back up my computer in case something happens to it, do you think I should get the superdrive? Not talking about the ! GHz compared to the 1.25 GHz, just the superdrive option.

    1 more thing, if I don't really need it now, I would just really like it, do you think I should wait for the expo in Jan, or is it very unlikely they will have a speed bump then?
  2. ethernet76 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 15, 2003
    I think the powerbook g4 line is probably dead and will see no updates until the g5 powerbooks are released next year. The fastest g4 chip they ever had in a powermac was 1.42 i can't see them going much past that except in the ibook in the next couple years.

    Otherwise for the superdrive i'd say no thanks. I was debating getting one, but I realize that I have one that i can use and that i've used it once in the month we've had that imac, and that was to back up some mp3s, a year ago.
  3. Fahd macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2003
    If you can afford it, go ahead and get it with the superdrive.
  4. KBFinFan macrumors 6502

    May 30, 2003
    Connecticut, USA
    I went ahead and got the Superdrive on my 15". I have yet to use it.

    However, I am glad that I did get it, because it is just another thing that makes the computer rise above the rest. It is good to know that you can back up large amounts of data or even create your own home movies. I just started using iMovie and iDvd so I'm sure I will be thankful for it soon. If you can afford it... get it.. I think that is good advice for most of life's purchases.
  5. caveman_uk Guest


    Feb 17, 2003
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    I have a powermac G4 with a superdrive and I have yet to burn a DVD with it. I'd guess that unless you're going to get a camcorder a superdrive is not much use. Personally I'd spend the extra cash on an external firewire drive for backup if I were in your position.
  6. iShater macrumors 604


    Aug 13, 2002
    I would go for the extran firewire drive for backup.

    I decided to get an iBook because I didn't think I would need the superdrive (and the price for going to a PB w/ a SD was big.).

    I had decided to do VCDs when I do my home movies.

    Well, 5 months later, even though I did some editing in iMovie, I haven't finished my projects or burnt a VCD yet!
  7. stoid macrumors 601


    Feb 17, 2002
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    Depends on how long you plan to have the computer and the possibility of you doing video during that time. I bought the 15inch PowerBook but axed the SuperDrive, and I think that I will be sorry as I plan to keep it for at least four years. It would really help for back-up and the like as well, although so far my 10GB iPod has been big enough. If you plan on having this computer in the long term I would go for it. Even if you don't use it all that much, I'm sure that it will boost the resale value in the future by just as much if not all of the investment that you'd be putting into it now.
  8. Ja Di ksw thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ja Di ksw

    Apr 9, 2003
    Thanks for the advice, all. It seems pretty split, which is how it is with people I've asked in person as well, but some good points were brought up. I like the idea of using that money on an external firewire HD. I might just adda a little more to it, and get the smallest dock iPod I can, maybe one of the ones apple has on sale, so I can get a microphone and record lectures. The more I think about it, the more I'm liking that idea.

    Thanks again for the advice
  9. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030


    Sep 18, 2003
    London, UK
    I have the Superdrive PB 12" and have yet to burn a DVD. But I am glad I got it because it is good for back-up and I have iDVD to use when I burn my movies to DVD.

    Bear in mind that the Superdrive is not quite as fast at burning CD-Rs and CD-RWs (the things you will mainly be burning) than the Combo drive, so that may be a factor in your decision. Having said that, my CD-R burning speed is far superior to my old P3 500 MHz Gateway PC running Windows 98...
  10. m4rc macrumors 6502

    Sep 15, 2003
    I have to echo johnnyjibbs comments. I have an external DVD Writer, and have never actually used it. I got my Alu PB with the combo, and love it. I am going on a long trip in the car next weekend, so wanted to burn a few CD's from iTunes. Each disc of 80 minutes took less than 6 minutes from start to finish, those speeds don't happen on a superdrive, although it certainly won't be slow.

    If you need to back-up more than 800MB at a time, you need the SuperDrive, but if you can burn in chunks of 800MB or less, combo may well be the answer.

    I just have to comment on the suggestion that the G4 PB is dead. Sure, it will be replaced, but so will the G5 eventually. Anyone hoping for a G5 laptop early next year is very likely to be dissapointed, all the signs point to the end of 2004 at the earliest.

  11. kanker macrumors 6502

    Nov 13, 2003
    I'd say it depends on what you're backing up. If you are OK with backing up to a volatile medium, get a FW drive. If you're backing up Multi Media files, I'd get the superdrive. For example, I have a 20GB G2 iPod. I will soon surpass the capacity of my iPod in iTunes. With the hassle of importing hundreds of CD's plus purchases from the iTunes music store, the superdrive in my iMac has been a godsend. I have "permanent" backups of my entire library for posterity, and don't have to worry about my computer or back up drives going down for any reason (age, accidents, sunspots- whatever might happen, cos you know it will). The other nice thing is that now that I have a superdrive, I can configure future purchases without one-- getting a PB15 1.25 for $200 less for example. Just network the two and back up. Are you going to use the thing daily or even monthly--no, but if you're dealing in large backups that you'd prefer a hard copy of, get the superdrive.


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