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Which would be a better OS X machine?

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Hey everyone,

Quick dumb question for all of you. I'm wondering what machine (of the two listed below) would be a faster OS X computer. I'd generally be running apps like: Photoshop, Office v.X, Internet Explorer, iTunes. Mostly productivity apps with a few desktop publishing and internet ones. The most intensive would probably be Photoshop or Office.

PowerMac G4
400mhz G4
AGP version
448mb ram
16mb ATI graphics card

New iBook
600mhz G3
383mb ram
ATI Rage Mobility graphics card

Right now I own the G4 but since I am going to start school next September I was thinking of getting a laptop. Unfortunately that would mean having to sell my G4 and all I can afford would be the iBook and I'm just praying it will be as fast as my trusty G4. What do you think?

I'd appreciate any comments any and everyone has.

-Ybot
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post #2 of 25
I have to say, I'd be very tempted to go with the iBook, especially as a student. Apple's laptops are their best products, and are tops in the industry (as far as price:features). I think you'll probably find that the iBook is faster in most things too.

It's definitely a tough decision giving up a desktop to go with a laptop, but I use my Ti PB 667 way more than my DP G4/500. And the LCDs look niiiice.

-Ender
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If you find yourself sided with the majority, it is time to change your thinking.

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post #3 of 25
OS X will run very well on a 600 MHz iBook. For many tasks you're likely to see small speed gains over a 400 MHz G4, as the G3 is still a strong performer in non-AltiVec enhanced applications. Photoshop might be another story though.

Perfomance in OS X is fine on my slightly older 500 MHz model (with a slower 66 MHz bus), and I haven't even upgraded to 10.1 yet!

Remember, though, that RAM is critical. You might as well throw a 512 MB module into that iBook if it's going to be your primary machine.
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post #4 of 25
Thread Starter 
Good points Ender & Daver, I guess I will go with an iBook then. I was just concerned that the AltiVec in my G4 would be faster than the 200mhz difference between the two computers. I guess I overestimated the Velocity Engine.

-Y
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post #5 of 25
Also don't forget the speed of the Hard Disk in the desktop always is faster than laptop's

But in general...if you are not a graphic person....go for the ibook.

You will appreciate its all-around performance and its ultra portability. Wireless web surfing is cool :cool:

Imagine....sitting on the balcony under the sun and make posts in AI forum at the same time :cool:
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post #6 of 25
I wouldn't consider either. I would scrape together enough to get a G4 TiBook. If you can't afford a 550 get a leftover 500. With the 1MB L2 Cashe, some feel it's faster. Although with the better graphics card in the new ones I don't see that being possible. Never the less, For the type of work you mentioned a G4 is well worth the extra cost.
post #7 of 25
Thread Starter 
I wish I could afford a used (or new) PowerBook G4. Unfortunately, I'll only have the money I get from selling my PowerMac G4 and the $1,000 in credit the local Mac store gave me. Which will be about $2,500 (Canadian) and is, unfortunately, not enough.

-Y
Registered 2001? My God has it been that long?!
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post #8 of 25
For what you'll be doing the iBook should run great. Also, since you're a student you'll ove the portability.
post #9 of 25
You could always take your powermac with you to your dorm. You need this computer for next september? Why buy it now? You have a perfectly good machine untill then. By September of 2002 there will most likely be an iBook update. Wait. Your current machine is fine. If you look at the way Apple dropped the powerbook prices prior to the Ti rev B update -- the discounts became the new retail prices -- I think that you can expect macs to get not only faster, but also cheaper in 2002. It's nearly 10 months to september. Wait. Never buy a machine 'now' for use 'later.'
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IBL!
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post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 
I wish I could wait, but unfortunately I won't have the cash so I need to sell my G4 and I'm afraid if I wait until next August to sell it, I won't get as much money for it. So the urgency to sell it is what's forcing me to get the laptop now. <img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" />

-Y
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post #11 of 25
So then go for the iBook now. You'll definately be happy.
post #12 of 25
Go with the iBook.

I dunno how the two computes compare in perfrmance. I do recommend any of Apple's portable computers, however. my pismo does it s odejob very well and is showing its age very slowly.
post #13 of 25
Hi,

If possible wait three weeks to see what MWSF will bring you.

Greetz,
post #14 of 25
Wait for MWSF and get a notebook with a G4 in it,OSX runs significantly better on a G4.
post #15 of 25
OSX runs fine on a fast G3. My iBook loves OSX! You'll find yourself coming out roughly even with a G4 500 if you guy an iBook 600 and put sufficient RAM in it.
post #16 of 25
[quote]Originally posted by sizzle chest:
<strong>OSX runs fine on a fast G3. My iBook loves OSX! You'll find yourself coming out roughly even with a G4 500 if you guy an iBook 600 and put sufficient RAM in it.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I agree. OS X even runs pretty well on my 500MHz iBook with the 66MHz bus.
post #17 of 25
iBook 500 MHz: OS X sings!
post #18 of 25
[quote]Originally posted by rambo47:
<strong>iBook 500 MHz: OS X sings!</strong><hr></blockquote>

Glad to see I'm not the only one happy with a 500MHz iBook with OS X.
post #19 of 25
I have a G4 600 DP (OC'd from 533) tower w/GF3 and an iBook 650(OC'd from 600) and the G4 utterly crushes the iBook in OS X. It's aleast twice to three times as fast even at basic operations.

Don't know how the old generation G4 will do though compared to the iBook.

[ 12-16-2001: Message edited by: Codename ]</p>
post #20 of 25
[quote] $1,000 in credit the local Mac store gave me. Which will be about $2,500 (Canadian)<hr></blockquote>

Our dollar is not that bad. US$1000 is about CAN$1600. Guess you'll be buying a bondi blue ibook.

C.pres
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The brain conceives of mathematical space in terms of numbers and dimensions ... The hand masters matter through the crafts, and with the help of tools and machinery.
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post #21 of 25
I say iBook.

As a student, the portability factor would be a significant plus.

And, regarding Photoshop and OS X: yes, I'm sure they both DO run better on a G4. Everyone knows and accepts that.

However, I'm running both (OS X 10.1.2 and Photoshop 6.0.1) on my 400MHz iMac DV and I'll be completely honest: never have I said "DAMMIT, this is too slow!!!".

I'm completely happy with the performance of both the OS and Photoshop on this 400MHz G3. I would imagine that 600MHz in an iBook is only going to be better.

Of course, not all Photoshop work is the same. I know tons of people who list Photoshop among the software they use. However, it's a LONG, LONG way from working on RGB 72ppi web design stuff to do high-end color correction and compositing on layered, 300ppi CMYK files, you know?

If you belong to that first group, you're hardly taxing Photoshop anyway and it should fly right along on any sort of G3. And even if you're doing the other stuff (complex hi-res work), a 600MHz is nothing to sneeze at.

Hell, just two years ago a blue and white 350MHz G3 was the end-all/be-all for graphics work and PLENTY of publishing and design studios were using those and doing tons of high-end Photoshop work.

I'm sure the 600MHz iBook mops the floor with those machines.

Yes, the G4 will run things like Photoshop better (in SOME instances/situations), but it's not like a G3 can't or somehow sucks.

If Photoshop is the only Altivec-enabled app you'll be using (and if you're not exactly pushing the envelope with it to begin with), the trade off in having a portable that's going to fly for surfing, e-mail, schoolwork, etc. seems reasonable to me.

And oh yeah: that whole AirPort thing. How cool is that? Takes bathroom reading to a whole new level.

post #22 of 25
Although, why don't you wait three more weeks: what if (humor me here) a new flat panel iMac is unveiled? And what if (hear me out...) one - if not all - of those models came with a G4?

To me, that would be the ultimate solution, wouldn't it?

Small, thin and light for a dorm setting AND a G4 to give you a little more "oomph..." when you felt you needed it (you might BE doing hi-res, complex Photoshop work, for all I know...).

In any case, certainly three weeks is not too long to wait. You might end up being able to get a machine that trumps both your current options?

Just a thought...
post #23 of 25
Thread Starter 
Well, I called my local Mac store and as it turns out they allow trade-ins towards the purchase of new Macs! So I took in my 400mhz G4 with 448mb of ram, 90gb of HD space (One 10gb and one 80gb) and a 17" Apple monitor. I got $1,850 (Canadian) for it in trade.

I then filled up my credit card and scraped together as much cash as I could and today on Christmas eve I managed to afford buying a 550mhz PowerBook G4 with 512mb of ram! I am soo happy, what a great machine!!!

I got to try out the iBook at the store and I would have taken it to save some $$$ except I found the screen too small and it was a strain on my eyes. So since I could afford the PB now I thought, why not? Just thought I'd let everyone know what I finally decided on and to say thanks to all who advised me on what to get. I'm a happy Mac user.
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post #24 of 25
Very cool. Congratulations.

Got a nice G4-based machine, cool screen, combo drive, etc.

And you STILL have the portability and AirPort option.

Sounds like you the best of both: G4 power and iBook portability.

post #25 of 25
Thread Starter 
Thanks. The more I use this machine the more I love it. One thing I noticed is that the keyboard is nearly silent compared to the one my G4 desktop had. I love that since I'm going to be typing in a semi-quiet lecture hall and the worst thing would be to draw attention to me from my extra-loud typing.

-Y
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