What can you use G4 Powerbooks for?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by yoshiii335, Feb 20, 2015.

  1. yoshiii335 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    #1
    Hello

    What can you use G4 Powerbooks for now?

    If I bought a old one, which model should I get?
     
  2. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #2
    Basic web browsing, note taking, file storage and management, DVD player, movie player, picture viewer, game player (old or light games), word processing, music player, server, picture frame, cutting board, file folder, surf board, frying pan,...

    You'd get the latest of course if you want power, or you can get the titanium one if you like the look of it, or you can get an older one if you want retro.
     
  3. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #3
    They still make ok machines for light web browsing using TenFourFox or Leopard Webkit, iTunes, and word processing. Keep in mind that it is based on the PowerPC architecture, and most of the software that runs on it is outdated and no longer compatible.
     
  4. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #4
    Within reason, they're good for just about anything most people use a laptop for...browsing the internet(with an up to date browser like TenFourFox or Leopard Webkit), making documents/presentations in iWork or Office, and even thing like gaming or demanding work provided that you use period appropriate software and don't try to use the latest and greatest. I can work with big film scans or digital photos all day on mine in Photoshop CS2, for example. They'll also likely choke on the web if you visit sites with heavy flash content or otherwise bloated sites. There are various plug-ins or programs(like Mactubes) that force Youtube videos to play in Quicktime, something that is a lot kinder to system resources than Flash. In fact, due to the fact that Flash for PPC is several outdated and has known security issues, you're much better off disabling flash completely.

    As for the best one to get-I'd say the last generation(late 2005) 1.67ghz 15"(A1138) or 17"(A1139). These have a bunch of upgrades over earlier ones including the ability to burn double layer DVDs(not a huge deal, IMO, but the reason these are often called the "DLSD" models), a higher resolution screen than previous ones(1440x960 on the 15", 1680x1050 on the 17"), and faster DDR-2 RAM. If you're going for maximum portability, look for an early 2005 1.5ghz 12". Whatever you get, max the RAM out in it-this will be 2gb for the 15" and 17" models, and 1.25gb for the 12."
     
  5. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #5
    I second this. The best one to get is the latest model possible, and max-out the RAM. These aren't new machines anymore.
     
  6. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    Jun 17, 2014
    Location:
    Lincolnshire, UK
    #6
    If you're into music making, a Powerbook is a studio to go. Use software from that period and they're unbeatable for the price - doing most other things you'd be better served with a cheap netbook or Windows laptop.
    What makes Powerbooks (and other Macs) great at music production is the inbuilt audio subsystem (Core Audio) - no messing around with drivers and all the fine tuning you have to do with PCs - everything is rock solid.
    If you can get a good condition one at a fair price, they're worth just having - regardless if you have any use for it - they are just beautiful pieces of engineering.
     
  7. iModFrenzy macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    Jan 15, 2015
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    Lead The Way!
    #7
    You can use PowerBooks for a good amount of things. I use my PowerBook for image editing, light gaming(there aren't really any "heavy" games that I know of), browsing , itunes, movies(720p, not sure about 1080p), and other stuff.

    My Powerbook is 1.25ghz.
     
  8. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #8
    I use mine for homework, looking up parts diagrams, IM/chat, Office tasks, music, etc.
     
  9. weckart macrumors 68040

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    Nov 7, 2004
  10. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #10
    haha
     
  11. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #11
    But G3 owners get to show off their upside down Apple when they're working :)

    That's one of the things that always makes me smile a bit when I'm working with my Pismo out in public, even though I doubt most people notice it.
     
  12. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #12
    PowerBook G3 owners chose the G3 for a reason. For the reliable and unique design, upgradability, or what a great Mac OS 9 machine it makes.
     
  13. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #13
    At least for OS 9 use, I'd take a Titanium Powerbook over a late G3 any day.

    Not only are most models clocked higher from the start(the slowest Ti was 400mhz, while the fastest Pismo was 500mhz), but for programs that can make use of Altivec-like Photoshop 7-it makes a huge difference in performance. The DVI models also all have L3 cache-something lacking in all the PB G3s, and the ones that don't have an L3 cache have a(relatively) large L2 cache. The later Ti books have a 133mhz FSB, while the Pismo is 100mhz. The widescreen TiBooks even in the earliest generations have more pixels than the Pismo(1152x768 vs 1024x768), while the later generation ones got bumped up to 1280x854. The Pismo and first generation Ti have essentially identical graphics, but the later ones bumped up the graphics considerably-the last ones had a Radeon 9000 with 32mb or 64mb of VRAM.

    I will concede that the G3s are a lot easier to work on, plus there's that whole thing with being able to use two batteries and the hot-swappable bay with a bunch of different things that can go in it. All of this comes at a cost, though-the G3s are fairly "chunky" compared to the G4s. There's also the fact that an aftermarket G3 battery will cost you $80+(more than I paid for my Pismo), while cheap(if not very good) Ti batteries are $20.

    I will concede the fact that the Lombard and Pismo are probably among the best looking laptops Apple has ever made-upside down Apple and all :)
     
  14. powermi macrumors regular

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    Apr 6, 2013
    Location:
    Avila (Spain)
    #14
    BTW.. PowerBooks are great for typing and the have awesome screens for photo edition.
     
  15. Orizence macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2014
    #15
    Not only is my Powerbook g4 used for taking notes for school and doing work,
    it also happens to be my main portable... I own a Corei3 dell laptop, but its just simply not as enjoyable to use as the Powerbook :p So pretty much,I do everything on my G4, although my new G5 took over a lot of its workload :p
     
  16. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #16
    Or...or... G4 hadn't come out yet when they bought their G3s. Am I right? Did I win?
     

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