What was Apple's BEST all-around laptop?

in General Discussion edited January 2014
If you look at price, styling, and performance (at the time of it's release), what would you say was Apple's best laptop ever?

I'm going for the 400Mhz Pismo, rev. B (with the larger hard drive). You had Firewire, USB, IR, hot-swappable bays, VGA and S-Video out, a cool look, and a fairly speedy machine all for $2499 USD!

Second place: 1.25Ghz 15" AlBook w/ Superdrive at $2599 USD.

Third place: 667Mhz G4 Powerbook (Onyx) at $2999 USD.


  • Reply 1 of 19
    ebbyebby Posts: 3,110member
    I was going to say the same thing but for a different reason. I'm typing this reply on mine. It also runs both OS 9 and OS X. Still working on that hard drive upgrade though.

  • Reply 2 of 19
    torifiletorifile Posts: 4,024member
    Price/performance-wise, I'd say the current iBook G4.
  • Reply 3 of 19
    Yeah, I'd say current g4 iBook as well.

    although when it comes to powerbooks, I saw aluminum 15"
  • Reply 4 of 19
    murbotmurbot Posts: 5,261member
    I'd vote for the Pismo too. Expansion bays, dual batteries, killer black case.

    I can't vote for the iBook since it doesn't have support display spanning.

  • Reply 5 of 19
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member

    Originally posted by CosmoNut

    Third place: 667Mhz G4 Powerbook (Onyx) at $2999 USD.

    That's the one without the L3, isn't it? At the time, the best apple laptop to buy was a refurb ti500 for about $1300 less.
  • Reply 6 of 19
    torifiletorifile Posts: 4,024member

    Originally posted by murbot

    I'd vote for the Pismo too. Expansion bays, dual batteries, killer black case.

    I can't vote for the iBook since it doesn't have support display spanning.

    But it does. Sure, you've got to apply a minor hack to get it, but it works just fine. It does nearly everything a powerbook can do for under $1000. Can you beat that?
  • Reply 7 of 19
    murbotmurbot Posts: 5,261member
    Well, I wasn't going to mention the scratch-prone pansy white case, but you leave me no choice.

    Well, NOW, the iBook beats the Pismo value-wise, but I guess for this we'd have to look at each laptop at the moment it was released, right?


  • Reply 8 of 19
    andersanders Posts: 6,523member
    Pismo for brute force look. Looks like the hulk in an armani suite.

    iBook G4 12" for stellar performance/price. Sleek and quick. Like a good trimmed biker.

    The Pismo was my first Mac. The iBook G4 is my current
  • Reply 9 of 19
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    you're all wrong... the powerbook 2400, aka "comet".

    fast for its day, and motherf'n SMALL. only now are the powerbooks getting back to what those 'books promised. if ethernet had been more prevalent at the time, they would have built that in, and it would still be a really useful machine today.
  • Reply 10 of 19
    Al 17". Raw sex appeal.
  • Reply 11 of 19
    northgatenorthgate Posts: 4,461member
    Yeah, the Pismo for sure. I LOVED my Pismo until the consulting firm I worked for went bankrupt and asked for it back...and then told me to leave. Sheesh! The nerve of some companies.
  • Reply 12 of 19
    ragexragex Posts: 126member
    Also have to give my vote for the Pismo too. Such a great machine.
  • Reply 13 of 19
    applenutapplenut Posts: 5,768member

    Originally posted by giant

    That's the one without the L3, isn't it? At the time, the best apple laptop to buy was a refurb ti500 for about $1300 less.

    i've got the 667. it spanks the ti500. software needed to be recompiled to take advantage of the new caches.
  • Reply 14 of 19
    applenutapplenut Posts: 5,768member
    Personally, my favorite was the 292 Mhz (later 300Mhz) 14.1 inch Wallstreet Powerbook
  • Reply 15 of 19
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    actually, i'm gonna change my vote to the last pismo as well...

    because my wife is STILL using it under panther even today. can hold a gig of ram, firewire and usb built-in, can hold two batteries for a large charge (though heavy), solid lcd, and the cd/dvd drive (though the dvd playback was crap until jaguar). also has a pc card slot, which allowed us to add a linksys wireless-g card, which works PERFECTLY with the linksys base station all over the house. the graphics chug with only an 8mb graphics card, but it does work.

    and if you're DESPERATE to keep it up-to-date, you can upgrade it to either a 550 mhz g4 or a 900 mhz g3. pity the upgrades are still kinda pricey. you can also get either a cd-rw/dvd-rom drive bay module from mce or even a superdrive (!).

    now, having said that, why did i not mention it first? two reasons: the power adapters had to be recalled shortly after the model was released (this was not a hoax... ours sparked like crazy, until we got a replacement), and the motherboard was just replaced last months when it went totally dead. but since we got applecare, it didn't cost us a thing (well, $300 for the applecare three years ago, but better than $1000+ for a repair today).
  • Reply 16 of 19
    bungebunge Posts: 7,329member
    Key Lime even at twice the price!
  • Reply 17 of 19
    lucaluca Posts: 3,833member
    Given their propensity towards failure, their intentional crippling of basic features, and the fact that it's impossible to do just about any upgrades, I'm going to give a dishonorable mention to all G3 dual-USB iBooks. Even the hard drive, at least, is user-accessible in most PowerBooks, and you usually don't have to worry about the motherboard failing.

    I'll nominate the original PowerBook G3 (Kanga, based on the 3400) as the best PowerBook for its time. Close runners up would be the 1400, the 2400, and the 540c. The 540c was a very good machine, with a crisp color screen, a fast processor, the possibility of upgrades (yes, processor upgrades!), and even two battery bays. The Kanga wasn't as expandable by nearly as much but it was still an excellent laptop, and the fastest laptop at the time (Mac or PC).
  • Reply 18 of 19
    I have to vote for the iBook SE (Graphite) that I'm using right now.

    $1700 when it was new ... at the time, a 466 G3 was a decent processor, Firewire was new, video out. And it is INDSTRUCTABLE. I still use it every day and my only real complaint is the 800x600 screen ... but 3 years ago that was pretty good.

    It's no G4, but in it's day it was a powerful machine for almost half the price of a Powerbook (which was still a G3 as well! )

    Plus ... it has that cool nickname ... "toilet seat"
  • Reply 19 of 19
    I'm voting for the 1400c. GREAT keyboard, processor upgrades, sleep-swappable 6x, 8x or 12x cd-rom and floppy (and zip and MO aftermarket) modules, stackable RAM.

    It runs 9.1 well on 64 MB RAM (max, unfortunately) and an ORiNOCO Gold wireless PCMCIA card works perfectly. I tested in Borders over the weekend

    Oh, and really easy to work on - slide the speaker cover left and off, pull the keyboard toward you and you can see everything! Then, and only then, do you have to remove any screws - 6 - to do a RAM upgrade. Or a processor upgrade. A few more and you can do a HD upgrade.
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