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View Full Version : I NEED HELP! Powerbook or Powermac?


davidfalling
2005-11-07, 15:41
OKay, so this is my first time posting on these forums, i am about to make the switch from windows to mac.
So here is my question: Should i get a powermac or a powerbook? I am a college student, who is going to school for audio engineering and i will be using pretty intensive programs. (pro tools, logic, reason, photoshop, flash, maybe a little bif of final cut, and i might play a little game now and then...doom3, etc)

The dillema i am having is that i am afraid if i buy a powerbook it wont be powerful enough with its single core g4 processor, slower front side bus, 32 bit, etc.
Portability would be great, but its not a requirement. Right now i have a laptop and i use it all over the house or at friends houses, (which is really nice!) but i dont take it to school so much because its HUGE (dell inspiron 5150..weighs like 10lbs!) note: i plan on getting rid of the laptop when i buy my mac.

It just seems like the dual core 2.0ghz g5 entry level powermac would be a lot better performance wise than a 1.67 ghz g4 15" powerbook. AND i feel like the powermac might not be outdated as fast. Since the dual core G5s are pretty new and the g4 has been around for sooo long. I also keep hearing about the switch to intel. I feel like even if the powermacs switch to intel, the performance on a g5 would still be pretty comparable, but if the powerbooks switch to intel then the performance is just gonna go through the roof!

note: i play on getting 2 gigs of ram either way.

Thanks so much for your help! :)

Yontsey
2005-11-07, 15:54
id say if portabiity is not an issue definatly go with the powermac with as much ram as you can get. i use logic a lot to do multitrack recordings and i have 1.5 gig and i wish i had more, ill go up to 2 when i can afford it. but id definitly say go powermac and just get as much ram as you can afford

kretara
2005-11-07, 16:09
My suggestion is to buy a Dual-core 2.0 PM and a 12" iBook. That way you can have the iBook for class (you can get the very cheap in the Apple 'red tag' section) and a PM for the intensive stuff back in your room.

I'm not familar with all the tools you listed so maybe and iBook won't work for you.

Don't forget to get your education discount.

Mugge
2005-11-07, 16:12
I second.

Even if you plan on getting rid of your Dell, you could just keep it for mobile needs until the Intel based PowerBooks arrive.

Oh, and welcome to AppleNova :)

EDIT:
Kretara got in before me.

sirnick4
2005-11-07, 22:54
If mobility isn't an issue, I agree with Yontsey, go with the PowerMac.

BUT, I also think you should consider the portablility route.. I love having my 12'' when I go to class. I use it so much for taking notes, and it makes me more organized when I take notes on a laptop, as opposed to old-fashioned pen and paper.

*Just a Thought* :)

admactanium
2005-11-08, 02:53
My suggestion is to buy a Dual-core 2.0 PM and a 12" iBook. That way you can have the iBook for class (you can get the very cheap in the Apple 'red tag' section) and a PM for the intensive stuff back in your room.

I'm not familar with all the tools you listed so maybe and iBook won't work for you.

Don't forget to get your education discount.
i agree with the sentiment of getting two computers. if you want to use logic pro or other processor intensive apps, you won't be dying using a powebook, but it's not nearly as fast as a powermac. get a low end powermac and the lowest ibook and call it a day. you're essentially shifting all the power needs to the tower and ONLY paying for the portability you need in the laptop (not paying for unused extra power).

davidfalling
2005-11-08, 21:56
Hey thanks for the replies! I would LOVE to get two computers, but i am a starving college student, so its pretty much one or the other for me. And i have to sell my dell laptop to my mom in order to get a little more money for the new computer.

I have heard many "RUMORS" that the new powerbooks are supposed to be the first macs released with the intel chips. I also heard this is supposed to happen at MWSF2006. soooo if this is the case, then maybe i will take my chances with the first rev intel-powerbook and applecare incase anything goes wrong...?

any thoughts??

The main thing is IM DYING TO GET A MAC!!! I've been waiting to get the money to buy one for over a year now, and i FINALLY have it, so i'm burning. but if the rumors are true of a new powerbook in january, then i might just try to wait....

sirnick4
2005-11-08, 21:59
I say to go ahead and get one. The Power PC chip will still be compatible for awhile. Don't wait just because of speculation. No one knows anything, except for Apple.

admactanium
2005-11-08, 23:42
have you considered getting two used computers?

switchr92
2005-11-09, 00:01
I vote PowerMac. The difference powerwise will be night and day, 1.67 GHz G4 vs. Dual-core 2GHz G5. Much more importantly, 167MHz FSB vs. 1GHz FSB . The PCI-E Leaves lots of room for expansion, the external moniter leaves room to upgrade later if you need, much more RAM compacity, and A FSB that can actually use all the speed benefits of DDR2 memory. Powermac, hands down. You will definetely appreciate it in the long run. Oh, and don't think applecare will solve all Rev. A-related issues. It might keep it free monitarily, but the time wasted is so annoying.

Robo
2005-11-09, 15:55
Well, first decide how much portability is worth to you. The Powerbook will be weaker, even if it does go Intel. If you decide that you need as much power as possible for your buck, than your mind is already made up for you. Now would actually be a great time to buy the Power Mac - it was just upgraded last month.

But if you decide that you do really need portability, I would advise waiting until January to buy a Powerbook. Even if the Powerbook doesn't go Intel at MWSF, I have a feeling we'd at least see it get the 7448 (the newer, faster G4) by the end of the month. January 31 would mark an entire year at the exact same speed for the Powerbook line, and I know Apple wouldn't want that.

davidfalling
2005-11-11, 03:04
what do you guys think is the possibility of a new powerbook at mwsf 06? because i am thinking portability is actually a really important thing. i just found out that i am going to need a laptop for school. so i guess the powermac is out..... :(

but i am just really excited to switch over to osx, so i was maybe thinking of just getting an apple certified referb powerbook for now to hold me over, because im so damn anxious! haha. and then when the new PBs come out, i can maybe sell my powerbook and get the new one, depending on specs. (seems like apple products hold their value really well..)

what do you all think of that one??

chucker
2005-11-11, 03:16
what do you guys think is the possibility of a new powerbook at mwsf 06? because i am thinking portability is actually a really important thing. i just found out that i am going to need a laptop for school. so i guess the powermac is out..... :(

I don't see it happening at MWSF, but AppleInsider sees it happening in early spring (http://www.appleinsider.com/article.php?id=1359).

Dorian Gray
2005-11-11, 07:05
Waiting for uncertain upgrades is never a great idea with computers. On the other hand, while Apple computers do tend to hold their value fairly well, the moment the PowerBook goes Intel is the moment that trend will not hold true, so I wouldn't bank on selling-to-upgrade without taking a substantial financial hit.

If you MUST have a laptop for class, then get the PowerBook and be done with it. It will work adequately for a couple of years. However, unless your school forces you to have a laptop, I wouldn't get one for class. I never use my laptop in class (and I can actually touch-type unlike the idiots who pound away noisily at 40 WPM) because taking down essentially non-linear information on a computer with a keyboard for entry is stupid. Pen and paper is much more efficient, much more secure, much quieter and much less stupid-looking. :) If you think likewise, you could then get the dual-G5 for doing work that a computer is good at.

bassplayinMacFiend
2005-11-11, 09:10
In college I found taking notes on a laptop worked great for my humanities courses (English, Lit, Psych, etc.). It worked only sometimes for biology (didn't work worth a damn for diagramming cells, etc.). It didn't work at all for math, pencil & paper is where it's at for anything requiring formulas, such as math, physics, chemistry, etc. Of course it worked great for my CS courses, but it damn well better have.

sirnick4
2005-11-11, 09:18
The laptop is the way to go. Get one now, and don't wait just because of speculation. These laptops are the last of the Power PC line (most likely), and they will be very stable for years to come. You'll be happy with one :)

kretara
2005-11-11, 09:27
Instead of getting a PM (or like I suggested earlier a PM + iBook), why don't you get a 17" iMac and a 12" iBook. You are still in the same price range as a PM, you still get a fast G5 (iMac) for your room AND you get a laptop for class.

holbox
2005-11-11, 09:29
The Power Mac will be WAY cheaper in the long run.

Lots more going for it since you said you don't NEED portablity. It's just a better machine with enough zip to keep you happy for many moons.

:)

T-Man
2005-11-11, 09:45
Like most everyone else is saying, PowerMac. My PowerBook with 512MB RAM can barely run Halo and GarageBand, doubt it will do too much better with more RAM? And as kretara said, iMac and iBook? More white, AND more Apple wherever you go. :D ;)

sirnick4
2005-11-11, 11:11
I have 1.25 Gigs of RAM on my powerbook and it makes a BIG difference.. If you have the money for the PowerMac, then you will be able to max out your Powerbook's RAM.

Of course, only do this if mobility is an issue.. The PowerMac will be a better machine in the long run...

davidfalling
2005-11-13, 16:38
Instead of getting a PM (or like I suggested earlier a PM + iBook), why don't you get a 17" iMac and a 12" iBook. You are still in the same price range as a PM, you still get a fast G5 (iMac) for your room AND you get a laptop for class.

I like this idea, but the only reason i would want a desktop would be for its smoking fast performance compared to a laptop. How does the G5 imac compare to the dual core G5 powermac?

kretara
2005-11-13, 17:02
Obviously the iMac will be slower than the PM. The iMac only has 1 G5 processor (non-dual core) and a slower bus speed. But, the iMac is a fast machine, its alot "cheaper" than the PM and it comes with a pretty nice monitor. The iMac should be able to do all the things that you were looking for the PM to do.

There are a few "gotcha's" with the iMac. You have virtually no upgradeability (other than HD and RAM). If you need a PCI card (more firewire/usb ports etc) you are out of luck. Also, and perhaps the biggest drawback to the iMac, is the all-in-one concept. If you want a bigger monitor in the future, you are out of luck. The monitor and the computer are all-in-one.

Even though I don't like the iMac (due to the all-in-one design) I would recommend it, especially for college students and apartment dwellers, because the iMac is so little space you can put it almost anywhere.

There are lots of people on this board who have iMacs and love them.

pscates2.0
2005-11-13, 17:15
I bet you there are more happy iMac owners who never felt "boxed in" than there are folks who overbought and wound up not ever using the "expandability" provided by towers.

:)

Just a hunch, but I'd put money on it.

kretara
2005-11-13, 17:40
I bet you there are more happy iMac owners who never felt "boxed in" than there are folks who overbought and wound up not ever using the "expandability" provided by towers.

:)

Just a hunch, but I'd put money on it.

True. Too true and thanks for pointing that out.

davidfalling
2005-11-14, 19:40
actually, i agree as well. i dont plan on upgrading anything in my computer once i buy it. i just want it to last me a couple years. now that you say so, the imac is looking really good. im sure a 1.9 or 2.1 ghz g5 would be fine for a year or two, right?

and then when the new powerbooks come out i can snatch one of those up, and have a desktop and a laptop...... but then if the powerbook is a lot more powerful i might not really use the imac. thats the only thing that makes me want a powermac is because i know no matter how much they upgrade the powerbooks when they switch to intel, i doubt they will outperform a dual core g5, and i will still have use for my desktop, but if i spend a lot of money on a dual core g5, then maybe i wont have any money when the powerbooks come out.
aw geez!
i guess i just have to make up my mind and take the plunge! either way i'll be happy with OSX and a lot nicer computer!