Apple’s newest PowerBooks still ‘the Rolls-Royce of laptops’

“Apple Computer Inc.’s PowerBooks have long been considered the Rolls-Royce of laptops with their stylish looks, powerful engines and hefty price tags. But with two years passing since its last major update, the line was at risk of being eclipsed by upstarts running on Microsoft Corp.’s Windows platform,” Matthew Fordahl reports for The Associated Press.

“Any fears that Powerbooks’ reputation as the best in the business might have been eclipsed were put to rest after the revamped lineup appeared on Jan. 31. The company even cut prices on most models a bit,” Fordahl reports. “The machines haven’t undergone a total transformation. They’re still powered by PowerPC G4 processors, not the newer G5 found in most of Apple’s desktops. The bump-up in speed isn’t tremendous either, though the latest PowerBooks are anything but laggards… Apple has focused on evolutionary improvements, but sometimes the little touches can add up to something big.”

Full article here.

Apple unveils faster PowerBooks starting at $1499 with ‘scrolling TrackPad, Sudden Motion Sensor’ – January 31, 2005


  1. As nice as they are….I’m going to wait for something with another processor…G5..dual core…whatever…just not the current incarnation of the G4.
    My 12inch suits my just fine for now.

  2. I got the 17″ powerbook nearly two years ago and it is running just fine. I upped the memory to 1 GB so that I can hop from app to app without any lag. Sure USB 2.0 would be nice, and the drive protection system in the newer ones comes in handy – but these are just a bit more icing on the cake. God forbid I ever drop the thing – hard drive park or not. The G4 runs hot enough with photoshop I can’t imagine the fan needed to keep a G5 chip cool…

    MW is ‘else’ – as in there is nothing else out there I would rather have

  3. I would say that their current offering on the hardware side of things is a little dated. But its really the software that made it such a good buy for me. I still think my G4 17 is quite unreasonably sluggish. Ofcourse, when you use a 2.5 Liquid G5 all day, pretty much everything feels sluggish.

  4. Not the Rolls of laptops! Rolls-Royces are driven by chauffeurs… no need for a chauffeur when driving a powerbook… it is so fun to drive, you want to drive it yourself. You may want someone else to drive a PC for you, but not a Mac.

    The magic word is “all”, as in, “All I wanna do is a zoom zoom zoom and a boom boom (from a PB G5).”

  5. Perception is everything – Apple is still perceived as too tony for the typical consumer (however misguided that is). Yes, the PowerBooks are way overdue for a real, significant improvement in processing power. But as a total package, it is still tops.

    I overheard a conversation about a particular car – a ’99 BMW M3 – as being very underpowered (240HP) compared to typical sedans being offered. However, it still romps over most everything and out-handles most everything. The total package is still top-rate.

    This pretty much sums up the PowerBook.

  6. G5 with a 19″ Screen isn’t that an Imac. get real other then us technology fetishists a G4 is fast enough for everything that an aveage user would want to do. I can’t complain about the performance of my G4 iBook. I have an Athlon64 3200+ for work where I need max CPU power. But for normal desktop tasks the G4 is pleanty fast.

  7. but I think the point is why should iBook and PB users have to settle with “fast enough.” Its a testament to a severe lack of cpu power when you are forced to use an A64 for “max power.” There shouldn’t be a need for a tradeoff…and if there is then why do I have to pay $1500(PB) for an only adequate solution.

  8. Its time for me to get a new laptop. I ‘d love a powerbook but for $3K I really want a G5 or freescale cpu. I think I will buy an iBook for now, and upgrade in about 2 years. My wife can continue to use the iBook ( email, web surfing) and I can upgrade to a powerbook then.

  9. I can’t justify ANOTHER $2,000 to replace a machine that I bought 8 months ago, though if I were in the market now it would be pretty sweet. I think I should wait at least a year to replace it.

    And my 94 Caprice with 260hp can outperform some BMW’s still, my dad is still pushing Quark with a 95 Performa 6200CD, so well built machines can still be used a lot later than they’re planned for.

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