Serious Mac users. Help please?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Ghoste, Dec 23, 2005.

  1. Ghoste

    Ghoste TPF Noob!

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    Ok so I decided... I'm going to start using Mac. With all the stuff I do.. Photography, Video, Graphic design (just personal use), and whatever else I just really want to get one. I'm really debating getting 15" Powerbook. But I'm also looking at the base model G5 PowerMac. I was wondering on the G5 about monitors. It would be alot cheaper for me to find a monitor on Ebay but I'm not familiar with them and don't know if any used Apple monitor will be excepted. What's the basic Mac stuff I need to learn. I really want the laptop. Should I just go with that for now and maybe look at the G5 later? I can actually make the Powerbook the monitor for the G5 right? Thanks in advance guys!

    P.S. I'm not computer stupid. I completely understand them and build them. So I don't need stupid terms for things. Just wanted to point that out because I hate having to explain that stuff to non-computer people. Thanks.
     
  2. tito_gh

    tito_gh TPF Noob!

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    you can use any moniter if that is what you are asking and if you hook up another moniter to a powerbook it is dual display you can drag the mouse between screens a lot better for what you are doing gives you a lot of room


    hope i helped
     
  3. kelox

    kelox TPF Noob!

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    The powerbook is awesome, I have one. The G5 is also awesome. The big thing you need to ask yourself is, is portability a need right now? If so, go for the powerbook. If you don't think you'll need to do work on the go, then get the G5.
     
  4. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Not really sure what your asking either... thoughts kinda rambled....

    I have a dual G5 1.8 with the 20inch cinema display paired with a second monitor for more desktop space. Apple's flat panel displays are very good but other monitors can be used with proper adapters. My second monitor is a standard 21 incher non-apple CRT with the proper Apple Display to VGA adapter. The flat panel Cinema display is connected through the primary DVI port. There are other "apple-ish' displays ( westinghouse for example ) but many do not have the resolution nor the quality.

    Other than continue quoting my setup, I'm not sure what else to say. If you are looking for a suggestion between a Powermac and Powerbook, its really comparing apples to oranges. Depending on what you want and need. Its up to you. My older G3 ibook with upgraded memory does fine for photo editing while on the go... I just have to be more patient than when behind the desktop.

    If computers come easy to yah, you are a "figure it all" type who likes paying attention to detail. Details ( ie specs ) on what you are looking would really be helpful.. not to mention some more specific question regarding the shopping and research you have already done.

    I leave you with one bit of info though..... At least with photo-editing applications, memory is more important than sheer processor speed.
     
  5. Unimaxium

    Unimaxium TPF Noob!

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    The 15" powerbook comes with the same monitor port as the G5 does, so any computer that you can use with the G5 you can use with the PB, with the one exception of the 30" apple cinema display (which will only work with G5s or 17" Powerbooks). Both use the DVI port, and come with a small DVI-to-VGA adapter in the box so you can use any display with either of those connectors. The PB also comes with an S-Video port for hooking up to other types of video devices. As for used or old apple monitors... the only model that will not work out of the box with either your PB or the G5 is the early generation Cinema displays that have the plastic casing rather than the metal one. The plastic ones used a connector that was proprietary to Apple (ADC) before they phased it out when they introduced the metal ones. There should be adapters available to use those displays with newer comps, though. But since both comps are compatible with DVI and VGA, any 3rd party monitor with either of those connectors will work. I'd recommend getting one with DVI rather than VGA if you can, since the former is a digital signal and the latter is analog.

    As for processing power, although I have no actual experience with the newer G5s, I would expect the Dual 2.0GHz G5 to be noticeably to significantly faster than the powerbook. I have a 1.67GHz 15" Powerbook and use a 1.6GHz G5 quite often, and both are about the same speed. But if you are doing stuff like Photoshop and video editing, then the dual processors and slight GHz bump in the new models should come to good use. Plus, the G5s are more expandable with RAM and PCI/AGP cards than the PBs are. Lots of RAM is always a good thing with Photoshop. And if you ever want to get Apple's Aperture program, then it would be quite useful to have a powerful graphics card.

    Apart from that, it's up to you whether you want to go with the PB or G5.
     
  6. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Don't forget.... PowerBooks only come with G4 processors while the PowerMacs are running G5's. The rumour I've heard was that the G5's run too hot in a compact laptop case.

    There's also a price difference. IMO, the Powermacs will be more bang for the buck although Powerbooks have the portability.
     
  7. jeroen

    jeroen No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I use a desktop G4 1.25Mhz with a 17" Samsung PC monitor at home and it works perfectly.
    At work I have a DualProcessor G5 with a 23" Apple flatscreen. That screen is great, but so is the price...
    I do mainly Photoshop work.

    At the moment I would recommend a desktop G5 with a good 17" or 19" PC screen. The G5 is cheaper and faster then the Powerbook. Apple screens are great, but very expensive. Better get some extra RAM and a Wacom tablet for the money you're saving.

    If you really need portability, I've read Powerbooks are coming with new Intel processors, probably sometime next spring. So in a couple of months you can get a G4 Powerbook for a lot less in price or an Intel with a lot more power.
     
  8. QMaze

    QMaze TPF Noob!

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    If you are considering using the machine for photo manipulation, video editing etc...don't even consider purchasing a Powerbook. Base a laptop purchase only on one thing, you must have a computer that goes with you, other than that they do not have the processing power of a desktop. Look into purchasing pre G5 models too. The G4 is an excellent product and many ppl have upgraded to the G5 and you can pick up some incredible deals.

    If you need to have the latest then hold out for the Apple products coming. The next generation of Intel based G's might be worth waiting for. I currently own a late model G4 733 and its my favorite computer. With Tiger server installed I can do all the editing, web hosting etc.. with all the stability in the world, luv my Mac. The best investment I ever made.

    But all in all there is no comparison between the Powerbooks and G5's, as others have mentioned if portability is the number one priority, then its a no brainer decision.
     
  9. Ghoste

    Ghoste TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, sorry, I wrote that late one night and don't think I had enough sleep. So basically most of you answered my questions. I think I'm just going to stick with the Book for now since I have a machine that is fine but can't go with me. Thanks for the help.

    Now the question is, is the extra cash worth it for the 17" Powerbook? Or should I just get the 15"?
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    My opinion... Go wth the 15" and put the saved money into maxing out the memory.
     
  11. Veggeep

    Veggeep TPF Noob!

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    I use the 15" PowerBook G4 for all my post production and digital workflow. With a Gig of RAM and a DVD burner, you're golden! Plus, the latest PBs are shipping with higher resolution screens and dual-layer drives that weren't standard six months ago when I bought mine (for $300 LESS). I don't know about using the laptop as a monitor for the G5, but the PB does have a native DVI interface on it, so you can even throw it on a plasma. I've done that from time to time as well. Personally, I think a G5 is a bit of overkill for digital photography. Maybe more suited to HD video editing and the like, but you're going to want the portability that the PB offers, believe me. My colleague uses one of the latest iMac G5's (19" display) for HD video and audio mastering, so don't think you have to spend big to get good performance out of an Apple these days. It's a killer platform. Do the PowerBook. You won't regret it.
     
  12. plugsnpixels

    plugsnpixels TPF Noob!

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    Ghoste, MacWorld is this coming week, and expectations are that Apple is releasing Intel-based laptops. This can do one of two things for you:

    1) Get you a faster, cheaper PowerBook than is currently available

    2) Lower the prices on current PowerBooks

    If it's not too late, hold off for a few days.

    Also consider a slightly used Mac. I'm writing you from a 5-year old DP/533 G4 (a hand-me-down from a school) that's running Tiger and Photosohp CS2, etc., better than the iMac G5 in the office, which clogs up with too many apps running (1 gig RAM in the iMac vs. 1.5 at home). I also have a 2001-era PowerBook that is still running the latest OS and apps nicely (traded a few Blue & White G3 towers for it some months ago!).

    In my G4 tower I installed a Pioneer DVD burner a year ago and a larger main hard drive more recently, so this older hardware has a lot of upgrade life and use left.

    Like new cars, new computers just suck your money and the value tanks as you leave the store. Buy used if you can't buy cheap.
     

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