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View Full Version : To Powerbook G4 today, or to Powerook G5 tomorrow, that... is the question


sildani
2005-03-10, 11:22
I am debating buying a new Powerbook, and I've already decided to wait until the new OS X to come out (Tiger, right?) before I buy the hardware. But my questions is, are we close enough to a G5 Powerbook that I should wait for it to come out? I don't have a pressing need to get one today, but I do have a need. What do you think?

And BTW, I searched the entire board for the words "G5" and "Powerbook" and didn't find much, in particular my question here. Why being so "mum" about Powerbook G5? There's gotta be more ppl mulling over this topic.

Thanks!

stonyc
2005-03-10, 11:29
Bottom line is, if you think that you can wait then wait... G5 Powerbooks don't appear to be coming anytime soon at all.

Fooboy
2005-03-10, 12:20
Apple designed the g5 to be a high performance desktop chip. Since it was designed for the desktop, they could afford to design it to use more power and put out more heat. Look at the g5 case, its a high tech solid aluminum wind tunnel with 4 fans.

WHEN they eventually get the g5 into a powerbook, it will probably be clocked at around the iMac speeds (1.6-1.8 ghz) or lower. Think about it - how could they get it faster than an iMac when the iMac is much bigger and thicker (for better air movement / heat dissipation) and has no battery life concerns since it plugs into the wall (unlike a laptop).

I suggest you get a powerbook g4 since they just updated them and they are great machines ... or get a last revision 1.33 ghz for $500-300 less (depending on how old). g5 powerbooks are purely speculation at this point as far as relaease dates go ... but just from common sense (read above), I think it will be about on par or a little below a 17 inch iMac ... and probably at least a year off.

It all comes down to the volumetric dimensions and acatual heat dissipation of something like a g5 in the small thing constraints of a powerbook ... plus the fact apple likes things quiet ... so also take into consideration that it can't be cooled in a method thats loud (fast or high volume fans).

That being said - I say there are 3 options on the horizon.

1. It's either going to be quite a while until they figure out a way to quietly cool one in a current/small/thin aluminum powerbook

2. They will underclock it enough to cool it sufficiently ... which would still be better than a g4, but not by nearly as much (although it'd still have the newer chip architecture and faster front side bus ... etc)

3. They will eventually end up making a departure from the current series/dimension/model of powerbooks (maybe thicker or louder) in order to cool the g5.

So as I stated, I'd go g4 and if you REALLY want a g5 later on ... then sell the g4 cuase there will be tons of people who'd still pay nicely for a well kept, still totally capable g4 powerbook, additionally, powerbooks hold value very well. EVEN MORE, when the g5 first comes out - you can image there will be a host of issues/problems as with any revision A machine.

Get the G4 (proven and currently available), sell it when the G5 powerbook has all the quirks out (which could be quite some time).

- Foo

MCQ
2005-03-10, 13:21
Where were you searching?

http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=4730&highlight=powerbook
http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=3889&highlight=powerbook
http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=3362&highlight=powerbook
http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=4233&highlight=powerbook

As well as a billion redundant threads that are locked, so discussion can be focused in a few threads.

As far as the G5 - depends on your needs. If your usage is such that your programs depend highly on floating point operations, then the G5 could be worth the wait. Otherwise, it's a toss-up. Personally, I'd rather see a dual core G4 if they can get it in -i.e. the 8641D.
http://www.freescale.com/webapp/sps/site/overview.jsp?code=DRPPCDUALCORE

However, that's probably a ways off as well.

If you need the laptop now - buy now since it's still relatively early since the refresh.

sildani
2005-03-10, 13:25
Where were you searching?
//...Thanks for the reply... I figured something was up because I found highly suspect that there would be no G5 Powerbook forums, and yes, I did find some of those after starting this thread. My apologies, I'm new here, I'll be a better posted in the future.

MCQ
2005-03-10, 13:32
Thanks for the reply... I figured something was up because I found highly suspect that there would be no G5 Powerbook forums, and yes, I did find some of those after starting this thread. My apologies, I'm new here, I'll be a better posted in the future.

No problem. :) It takes everyone some time to get used to the forums, as long as you're making the effort it's all good.

curiousuburb
2005-03-10, 13:54
In general principle, the first generation of PowerBook G5 will, as a Rev. A machine, have quirks.

Most folks advise against getting a Rev A. unit unless you need the bleeding edge.

Let others be the guinea pigs for manufacturing defects (if any).
Better to invest in a Rev C or D G4 machine where they're closer to its sweet spot,
have worked out any manufacturing or appearance issues from earlier generations,
and generally have tweaked the design to near optimum in the 'older' hardware.

Just as an abstraction, if the new machine needs to go back to the shop, it wasn't a smarter investment than the slightly older one that might need less fine-tuning, right?

Wraven
2005-03-10, 14:08
Man, it will be a while too before a G5 PowerBook comes out, since they JUST updated the PowerBook G4s. If you need a laptop any time soon, I'd say go with the G4. It IS fast enough to run most programs well. And as curiosuburb mentioned, WHEN the G5 Powerbook eventually comes out (it WILL, some day), it is bound to have quirks at first. The G4 PowerBooks should have MOST of their bugs ironed out by now (white spots, etc... are mostly in previous Rev.'s).

Fooboy
2005-03-10, 14:55
Did no one read my post? I thought it was awesome, informative, and talked about all this stuff. :\

oh well ...

sildani
2005-03-10, 14:58
Did no one read my post? I thought it was awesome and informative! :(

and talked about all that stuff alredy!I read it! It was very good, as are some of the others. I even added to your reputation. Like I said I really liked it.

I am going to wait for OS X Tiger to come out, and then I will buy the latest 15" PB on the market, brand new, apple care and all. :) I can't wait to see the pictures of your new PB when it arrives. I love my 12" PB, they are so small and light.

MCQ
2005-03-10, 15:04
Did no one read my post? I thought it was awesome, informative, and talked about all this stuff. :\

oh well ...

Well, it was good. :) However, it just outlined only one scenario - I'm not convinced that the G5 is the *only* possibility for the PB's next major move.

curiousuburb
2005-03-10, 15:18
You might save a few Benjamins now and buy AppleCare just before the end of your first year of free warranty. Its clock still extends the warranty to 3 years if you get it then, but you don't really need extended coverage while you're still under primary coverage.

and the pennies go plink plink

EmC
2005-03-10, 15:59
You might save a few Benjamins now and buy AppleCare just before the end of your first year of free warranty.

That is exactly what I did, the first time I bought a powerbook, and that is what I plan on doing for the PowerBook that is sitting at the house, unopened because I HAVE TO BE AT SCHOOL TODAY! SOB!

Ahem...now, this is a great way to save some extra money, or get a feature you thought you couldn't afford.