Updated iBook or Current PB?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Eddo, Oct 20, 2004.

  1. Eddo macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2004
    Hi guys,

    Up until recently I was planning to buy a 12" PowerBook with Superdrive but I thought I'd wait a while to see if the line got updated - those PBs have been around a while now. Lo and behold the update arrives... but it's for the iBook!

    Now I'm in a dilemma. Do I go for one of the new iBooks, probably the 14" with Superdrive, or stick with the PowerBook? I'll mostly be using it for image work (Photoshop), web building (Dreamweaver), movie editing (iMovie) and of course watching DVDs and listening to tunes. Portability is important cos i travel a lot and will be heading to New Zealand for a year next summer.

    Does everyone agree there isn't gonna be a PB revision for some time (probably MWSF in January)? If so which machine should I go for? Is the 12" PB still superior - or at least worth the difference? :confused:
  2. quidire macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2004
    Washington DC (in Kalorama Triangle)
    I bought a 12" PB last night, after going over the iBook stats.

    the major points for me were:
    * the graphics card
    * the fact that at the low end (of performance, and these two models really are far behind) every small bit has dramatically more impact.

    (1.33 - 1.2) > (2.5-2.0) basically, given that one gets diminishing returns as one continues to increase the processing resources available.

    The price difference isn't that dramatic, especially if you look at included software.

    (OmniGraffle is the best program EVER)
  3. lasuther macrumors 6502a

    Feb 13, 2004
    Grand Haven, Michigan
    If you must have a superdrive, go with the 12" PowerBook. It is only $250 more, and you have better features and a graphics card. I would upgrade the PB hard drive to a 5400rpm. But, if you can live without a superdrive the 12" iBook is looking really good at $1000.

  4. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    ibook 1.33 ghz superdrive/60gb/bt/ae/256mb: $1549
    powerbook 1.33ghz superdrive/60gb/bt/ae/256mb: $1799

    Powerbook pros:
    Powerbook has 64mb videoram (ibook 32mb)
    Powerbook supports dual screens + videomirroring (ibook supports videomirr. only)
    Powerbook had DVI input (ibook has VGA)
    Powerbook has audio in.
    Powerbook has faster bus (167mhz vs ibook 133)

    ibook pros:
    The ibook has better battery time (6 hours vs 5 hours)
    The ibook has a little better wireless reception
    The ibook is costs less
    The ibook is recently introduced, while the powerbook probably will be upgraded within 3 months.
    ibook has more bundled software..

    Its your decision...
    Two months ago i found the powerbook a better value than the ibook,
    i'm not sure if its still..
  5. spencecb macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2003
    With the kind of work you will be doing on your portable, the graphics processor has nothing to do with renderings in Photoshop, iMovie or any of those programs. The only thing I would be thinking about is the fact that the next release of Mac OS X is said to be moving more of its Graphical User Interface onto the graphics processor. In this area, I would be leary of getting an iBook because of the 32 MB Ram for the graphics. The PowerBook has twice as much (or four times as much if you opt for the 128 MB Ram). That being said, if you plan on upgrading to Mac OS X 10.4, or if you are interested in some gaming, I would buy the PowerBook. It will have a longer life than the iBook will!
  6. aznsal612 macrumors member

    Oct 20, 2004
    I posted this in the rumors discussion of the iBook but these thread seems more appropriate so I'll paste my post from the other thread here:

    Hey everyone!

    I feel weird interjecting in this huge conversation about iBook vs. Pbook and which should get what, gripes, praises, etc., but I felt the need to ask a question (that's probably redundant).

    So here's another situation for you mac people.

    I'm a freshman at NYU and am deciding to make the 'big switch'. The last time I used a mac was in fifth grade, so it's been a while. I have a Dell laptop (Inspiron 5150), but am saving up for an apple laptop. I primarily use the laptop for typical casual college student stuff, you know the deal. But I also am a photographer and into web design so I use a lot of Adobe Photoshop and often multi-task with that program, so I am very aware of the hardware situation.

    With the current state of the apple lineup, should I jump in head first and go with the ibook deal? Or wait it out for a possible powerbook price drop in the upcoming months? I'm not a hardware junkie but won't stand the skimpy ****, so I'm an in betweener.

    Or the other answer is: just stick with your dell kid.

    So yeah. And I'm literally saving up...penny by penny. So I'd probably reach my goal in...say...earliest mid-December , latest end of January.

    Your take peoples?

  7. coconn06 macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2003
    King of Prussia, PA

    If it's going to be another couple months before you reach your savings goal, I would hold out just slightly longer for updated PowerBooks. The general rule on waiting for product updates is "if you NEED a computer, buy it now. If you can wait for the next update, wait." It sounds like you can wait, so my advice would be to wait.
  8. quidire macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2004
    Washington DC (in Kalorama Triangle)
    Hi there

    1) re-evaluate when you have enough money saved up AND/OR see if you can get the Apple Credit Account thing (even if you wait until you have enough saved up, it has 90 days interest free, so you can put it on that card, and retain some liquidity for 90 days. As this has implied financial value, you may as well tap into it.)

    2) I'm switching from Dell as well. DO IT! The tiny irritations we Windows users accept as a matter of course are in aggregate mind-boggling after one tries the alternative. I've been playing w/ a friend of mine's iBook for a while and the difference is night and day.

    3) re: PB vs IB, well I ordered a 12" PB last night, after taking a look at the refreshed IBs, so obviously I consider the PBs to be worth the extra right now. Needless to say, after the PB update expected in January, the case will only be that much stronger. Get an iBook if you can't afford (or would rather not allocate enough money for) a PowerBook; there is no other compelling reason.

    4) Creative Studio CS (academic) $400, Macromedia Studio w/ Flash Pro (acad) $250... budget these in!

    5) Consider a 15"/17" PB or iMac if you don't need the portability; using the programs in #4 take a lot of screen real-estate. The 20" iMac will be far more usable than any laptop.

  9. yoak macrumors 65816


    Oct 4, 2004
    Oslo, Norway
    Wait if you can. I bought the 12" iBook yesterday and saved more than $150 (because now Airport is not BTO) on what I`ve would have spent on Monday.

    So thanks to you guys on this site who have helped me out , and saved me quite a bit of money.

    I decided to get an iBook now because of the price and I had to get a Mac now, then I`ll buy an iMac next time it`s upgraded.
    This will cost me about the same as a 15"PB with SD (which was what I planned to buy originaly).

    So again, thanks alot guys :)

    PS Can't wait to get my hands on my iBook
  10. Eddo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2004
    Thanks to the advice regarding my original iBook 14" vs PB 12" dilemma. The concensus seems to be that the PB is still a superior machine, especially if I get a faster HD fitted. I have two questions:
    1. Some people seem less than enthusiastic about the Superdrive. Is it not worth it?
    2. Are we definitely not gonna see an updated PB before Jan? I can wait a little while but not till March if that's when the G5 finally ships. Also I have a friend visiting the States at the end of the month for a couple of weeks (I live in the UK) who has offered to pick one up cheap for me. Do I take up the offer and get him to buy the best available PB or stick with my old laptop (the trusty old TiPowerbook 400MHz) till the next update?

    Before we go down the 'if you need it, buy it' line, my point is I CAN make do with what I've got but I'm getting impatient to upgrade...
  11. vga4life macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2004
    1. How often do you need to burn DVD's on the go? I use my desktop superdrive with some frequency but have never felt the need to burn DVDs on my laptop.

    2. Probably no PB update until next year, correct.

    The US online apple store (store.apple.com) regularly has 12" powerbook refurbs with combo drives for $1349 ($1549 with superdrive). If your friend is in one place long enough to order a refurb 12" in the US, that's may be your best value. You might also the special deals tab on the online uk apple store, though it appears to be only available on wednesdays.


  12. quidire macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2004
    Washington DC (in Kalorama Triangle)
    wrt 1 : it would be cheaper to buy (when you wish to) an external dvd burner, and you can then get a dual-layer (8.5GB, the same size as "hollywood" dvds (DVD-9) ) burner to boot.

    wrt 2 : Apple has unequivocally declared there will be no PB updates until after "the holiday season". I would further add that the assumption is there will be another G4 speed bump before a G5 or dual-core G4 is released. This last is speculation and educating guessing.

    wrt your friend : Don't get the refurb; you can get the "real thing" for not much more. You are spending almost 1000 pounds, get a new computer for your money. I believe the warrantee situation is better as well.. how much is a Apple UK new PB? Are you a student?

  13. Eddo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2004
    No I'm not a student any longer so no cheap deals any more :( I don't really like the idea of getting a refurb cos like you say quidire it's a lot of money and I don't wanna be worrying about its history or if it's gonna last a good while. The idea of burning DVDs appeals both for my movie editing and backing up all my photos etc. I don't have a desktop cos I'm never in one place long enough so I guess you could call it a desktop replacement. By buying in the states I can save approximately £370 ($677) on the basic Superdrive PB model, going on today's exchange rate. On the 14"/SD iBook I'd save £230 ($420). My buddy will be over in Chicago for 2 weeks - is that long enough to process an order?
  14. quidire macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2004
    Washington DC (in Kalorama Triangle)
    1) wrt Superdrive: fair enough then; I was going through the same decision making process and I chose to get a combo drive PB and the La Cie dual layer external drive instead. The price difference is small so its personal taste.

    Hmmm _perhaps_.... There are "standard" configurations that one might find at an Apple store... but failing that its very risky.... Depending where your friend is staying you could order ahead of time and ask the hotel to keep the package for your friend, but thats ... well thats entrusting the hotel with a package worth over a thousand pounds...

    Do you/he have any friends in the US? That's easily the best way, as they are (hopefully) more trustworthy than a complete stranger. Hell I'd help you out except I live in Maryland ;) I'd imagine if you could find someone to ship it to you wouldn't be worried about this....

    Hmmm. I wonder if its possible to ship it to a FedEx/UPS outlet... They're like the hotel people except since it hasn't left their possession their insurance policy protects you. The idea being the Fedex store or UPS store would hold the package for you... much like buying a P. O. box. Will Apple ship to an address like that?

    Well, I don't think I've been very useful (more questions than answers and all that) but good luck!

  15. Eddo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2004
    Sorry, should have said: my friend is visiting his sister so the address will be no problem. If I go for a BTO model with the faster HD how long do you think it'll take to ship, and is the Apple store the only way to up the HD spec? Could I get it cheaper elsewhere?
  16. quidire macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2004
    Washington DC (in Kalorama Triangle)
    re: address, good deal.

    I ordered a BTO + faster HD (and ordered RAM from OWC instead of apple)
    getting extra RAM is critical. If you can afford it, I would get an extra 1GB, only $250 at OWC.

    Apple got my order two days ago (tuesday night) and it should be delivered to me next thursday or friday. (It will be shipped this upcoming monday).

    basically +3 business days to ship, +3 business days to arrive.


Share This Page