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Portables (Apple) Businesses Apple Hardware

Apple Gives Laptops Speed Bumps 766

sockit2me9000 writes "Apple released their new PowerBook today. They include faster processors across the board (up to 1GHz), Radeon 9000 GPUs, and the top-of-the-line model will include a slot-loading SuperDrive. Price points remain about the same. New iBook was released as well."
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Apple Gives Laptops Speed Bumps

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  • by vasqzr ( 619165 ) <vasqzr AT netscape DOT net> on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:25AM (#4607823)

    Honestly, no PC-based laptop can compete. Size, battery life, specs other than CPU speed....style

    Now, if they'd put a serial port on the back, it comes with a UNIX-based doesn't it?!

    Maybe a USB-serial converter would work. Can you say console access?

    • A USB to Serial converter works great in Linux, but I've yet had the chance to use it with OS X.
      • Some of them definitely work - the question comes up on the darwin-developers list regularly. There's a /dev entry for serial devices & also the XServe has a fully-working serial port on the back of the machine. So yeah, MacOS X natively supports serial ....
    • Slower speed automatically gives you longer battery life and smaller size (the battery is the largest single component except maybe the screen).
    • how about a bluetooth serial dongle [citech.co.jp]?

      Not sure if it's supported in OS X, but it is in linux...

      And I'm sure there's a serial/usb converter that works, even if it's din-8 (as Apples were)..

      BTW, anyone try consoling into a modern SPARC with USB ports, or are they only for peripherals?
    • by pauljlucas ( 529435 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:44PM (#4608584) Homepage Journal
      Maybe a USB-serial converter would work.
      They do work. Try Keyspan [keyspan.com].
  • Shipping times: (Score:4, Informative)

    by mgaiman ( 151782 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:25AM (#4607825) Homepage
    Powerbook 867: 1-2days
    Powerbook 1GHz (w/o Superdrive): 5-7 days.
    Powerbook 1GHz (w/ Superdrive): 3-4 weeks.
  • Nice and cheap (Score:4, Insightful)

    by e8johan ( 605347 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:26AM (#4607836) Homepage Journal
    I have to say something that I never though I'd say: "These new Macs look great! They are relatively cheap, run *nix and have al the hardware you could wish for!"

    My sincere congratulations to Apple for having swung around from being a stubborn, expensive brand to become a computer supplier that I like. I will concider an Apple next time I buy a computer!
    • Re:Nice and cheap (Score:3, Informative)

      by edmo ( 619449 )
      Actually, apple has had always had good stuff like this, everybody just sees the price and doesn't bother to check the specs

      Also Mac's do have a longer life then most other computers Iv worked w/
      I once read a quote that said a mac has a useful life of 8-10 years, at that I laughed my head off, until I realized I wuz reading it on my PPC from 95(only thing that's gone out in that time is the monitor...)
  • Speed Bumps? (Score:2, Interesting)

    Apple would never have used such a title. Speed bumps (used in parking lots) are something that slow you down when you are driving over them!
  • ibook (Score:3, Funny)

    by fuzz6y ( 240555 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:28AM (#4607856)
    $999 for pretty decent specs, and it doesn't even look like a see-n-spell any more. I want one.
  • PowerBook G4 & iBook (Score:4, Informative)

    by catwh0re ( 540371 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:28AM (#4607858)
    All laptops are now $200(USD) cheaper than before.
  • Must be a first (Score:4, Interesting)

    by protohiro1 ( 590732 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:28AM (#4607865) Homepage Journal
    Interesting that this makes a portable Apple's ENTRY LEVEL option. The low-end ibook is the cheapest apple you can buy.
  • "speed bumps"? (Score:3, Informative)

    by pongo000 ( 97357 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:30AM (#4607882)
    Hey, Pudge, where I live, speed bumps are used to slow people down. I couldn't figure out why in the hell Apple would want to slow their laptops down.

    Mayhaps you were looking for "speed boost" or "speed increase"?
  • by elliotj ( 519297 ) <slashdot.elliotjohnson@com> on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:31AM (#4607889) Homepage
    I wonder when they iBook is gonna be given the dignity of a G4 processor. The life of the G3 has been remarkable but I can't help thinking that it has been stretched out not by virtue of the chip itself but rather because Apple is having trouble getting better and faster chips from Moto (hence the IBM PPC rumors recently).

    This is pretty cool, especially for the TiBook. I'm sure video houses will appreciate the superdive to let them make rough cuts on the road and share them.

    Now, sadly, my TiBook is no longer state-of-the-art. I can tell its feelings were hurt: this morning it ask me if it looked fat.
    • it makes sense to me for Apple t still equip their iBooks with G3's for a couple of reasons:

      -Other companies do it too...you can buy a Dell with a celeron as opposed to a speedy P4

      -I can personally attest to, after using a G3 iBook, wanting something faster. Anybody that buys an apple these days has a pretty good chance of getting hooked for good, and right now I'm eyeing that new PowerBook just because my iBook seems a bit slow

      oh, and i want to bust Quake 3 out on it at QuakeCon 2003 =]
    • I can tell its feelings were hurt: this morning it asked me if it looked fat.

      oh you poor, poor bastard. I hope you didn't hesitate in answering...
    • Actually, for what it is targeted for, the G3 in the iBook is a decent chip. There is good performance, fantastic battery life and low heat production. I've been running an iBook for a while now and am quite impressed with the size, packaging and performance. Granted it is not a replacement for my Dual G4 with 2GB of RAM, scads of hard drive space and 22in Cinema Display, but when I am on the road, getting my email, writing papers and giving presentations, it is all perfectly suited to the iBook.

    • by 0x69 ( 580798 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @01:25PM (#4609013) Journal
      The current iBooks use the new IBM 750fx "G3" CPU's. What's holding them back is *marketing* - the 750fx goes up to 1GHz (25% faster) with 200MHz (100% faster) bus, but Apple's too afraid of eating into (more profitable) TiBook sales to ship faster iBooks.

      IBM did a *really* nice job designing the 750fx CPU. Back in May/June (when Apple introduced it in the iBook) one of the Apple hardware sites did some G3(750fx) vs. G4(Moto) comparison benchmarks. Bottom line: for anything that wasn't written to use AltiVec, the IBM G3 was just as fast as the Moto G4 (at same MHz).

      Weak video systems really slowed older iBooks down in (eye-candy-full) OSX. It's far less a problem in the new iBooks.

      Understand what you'll be using it for and do your homework BEFORE spending the $$$ to get a G4.
  • It's great to see Apple giving its upper-class customers more for the same price, but it still doesn't solve the real problem. Apple Ibooks are still out of reach for those of us who compromise the working classes.

    Just glancing at the Apple web page, I can see that their most "affordable" lap-top is anything but. I could understand them doing this if they already had a large market share--there is value in "luxury" brands--but with MAC sales so low, it seems like a bad idea. As a result, the average consumer won't even consider the Ibook. For example, look at me. I was laid off when the Dot.Com bubble burst, and now work doing manual labor down at the docks. I'm in hock up to my loogies, and have enough trouble just keeping my wife and five children sheltered, shorn, and clod each month. There's no way I could afford one of these things, and neither could most people in my position. The lower classes need something affordable, dependable, and proven, and for this reason we will continue to stick with PC manufacturers such as GateWay 2000 and DELL. I hope Apple figures this out soon.
    • If you're in hock up to your loogies, why are you buying a new computer?
    • Looks Cheap to Me (Score:2, Informative)

      by KalenDarrie ( 320019 )
      Considering a quick look at Dell and Gateway reveal only one laptop from Dell that's $899, I think $999, the most affordable iBook Apple has, as being well within the reach of anyone who is considering getting a laptop and can budget it.

      Or is 100 dollars that much an issue?

      If nothing else, Apple is improving hteir price points gradually.
    • I disagree; the lowest-priced inspiron from Dell is just at $899

      personally, I would pay the extra $100 to get the iBook simply for OS X 10.2 and/or for the kickass look of ibooks

      trust me, these things get looks from people when you walk into a lab here on campus, open it up and it's immediately ready, then close it down, drop it in your bag and split for lunch
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:06PM (#4608216)
      Apple Ibooks are still out of reach for those of us who compromise the working classes

      Excuse me, the reason I can afford a Mac is that I work therefore that makes me in the "working class". What you are talking about is that "Slashdot Class" -- a group of people that think its a sin to pay for anything. Which makes the best notebook for you the one found in the dumpster behind a fortune 500 company. Instead of using the Windows 2000 Pro install already on it, you fdisk the harddrive and install Gentoo Linux so you can show it off at your next meeting of the 2600 club complete with Anarchy and Calvin peeing on the Windows logo stickers.

      For the rest of us in the "working class", Apple has produced some awesome notebooks at a reasonable fee. Where is the PC Notebook that burns DVDs? What Linux distro supports that?

    • The lower classes need something affordable, dependable, and proven, and for this reason we will continue to stick with PC manufacturers such as GateWay 2000 and DELL. I hope Apple figures this out soon.

      (Gateway dropped the "2000" bit three years ago.)

      The lowest priced iBook is $999. Dell's lowest priced model is $899, and Gateway's lowest priced model is $999. They've hardly got Apple beat on the "value laptop" end.

      And, like a different poster said... if you're sturggling along doing dock work, what do you need a shiney new laptop for?
  • 128MB? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Junks Jerzey ( 54586 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:38AM (#4607965)
    Note: I am not bashing Apple here. I have owned Macs.

    How far can you really get with OS X and the 128MB these Powerbooks ship with? OS X is great, but the prevailing opinion is that it's more memory hungry than Windows. (It's quite possible that this is a myth. Reviewers love to say dumb things like "I highly recommend that you upgrade to 512MB if you plan on doing more than simple word processing.")

    I'll add, of course, that 128MB uses less power than 256MB, which is important for laptops.
    • Re:128MB? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Spencerian ( 465343 )
      The PowerBooks don't come with less than 256MB.

      Mac OS X's specifications recommend a minimum of 128MB. If you are going to use Classic, that is too small--OS X thrashes as it has to swap a lot.

      RAM is currently quite cheap, and since cracking an iBook or PowerBook open can be a little daunting (and warranty-voiding if done wrong), I recommend having at least 384MB for Jaguar. 512MB+ is optimum.
      • Re:128MB? (Score:5, Informative)

        by dhovis ( 303725 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:14PM (#4608291)
        cracking an iBook or PowerBook open can be a little daunting (and warranty-voiding if done wrong)

        You haven't done it, have you? Easy as pie. Pop off the keyboard. On the TiBook, you will see the 2 slots. On the iBook, you need to remove the Airport card (if installed), and 2 small screws to remove the cover over the memory slot. Even if you don't know what you are doing, it doesn't take more than 10 minutes.

        In fact, I think there is a diagram on the bottom of the keyboard to help you. There are definitely directions in the owners manual.

    • Re:128MB? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by dhovis ( 303725 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:49AM (#4608055)
      128 is the bare minimum. It works, and if you don't run more than 1 or 2 apps at a time, you might not notice the swapping. I have 384MB in my original iBook 500, and it runs Jaguar just fine. It bogs down a bit if I have 10-12 apps running, but otherwise swapping is not a problem.

      The good news is that 512MB chips for the iBook are now available for $80-100, so you can max out the memory (640MB) for a reasonable price. Apple memory is still expensive though.

      • Re:128MB? (Score:5, Informative)

        by Fugly ( 118668 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:15PM (#4608317) Homepage
        Actually, while normally outrageously expensive, apple memory happens to be pretty cheap right now. You can double the ram in any system for $40. Bumping the TiBook from 512MB of RAM to a gig of RAM for $40 sounds like a pretty sweet deal to me. Bumping the 256MB iBook to 512MB for $40 doesn't sound bad either.
  • battery life (Score:3, Interesting)

    by frostycellnex ( 571215 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:39AM (#4607973)
    This is the computer I've been waiting for--everything I want all in one tight little package. My only question is with regard to that quoted battery life. I'd expect that's an extreme limit, with the lowest possible power consumption configuration. So can I watch an entire DVD on a single battery charge? I'm expecting to be doing some trans-Pacific flights in the near future, and those 18 hours would go by a whole lot faster if I could watch my own movies. For you double-E's out there, I've seen rumors that Apple is working on a new battery, but that it probably wouldn't find it's way into Apple's portables for at least another 6 months (and I presume that's optimistic). What's the likelihood that a new battery would be compatible with the current hardware architecture?
    • Re:battery life (Score:2, Informative)

      by geniusj ( 140174 )
      Yes.. you can easily watch a dvd on one charge.. I've done it many times, and I usually have about 30-40% left over afterwards. This is on a TiBook 400mhz. I think they actually have improved the batteries themselves since then..
    • Re:battery life (Score:5, Informative)

      by BinxBolling ( 121740 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @01:16PM (#4608928)
      So can I watch an entire DVD on a single battery charge?

      Yes. Also, if you download something like DVDBackup [wormintheapple.gr] and use it to copy the DVD to your hard drive before your trip, the Apple DVD player can play it from there, which will probably consume less power than spinning the DVD drive would.

  • Anyone ever noticed how much mundane Apple news gets posted on Slashdot? A minor speed increase on laptops doesn't seem to warrant a full story.

    And, if you look in the categories for stories, there are tons of Apple specific categories for no real reason:

    Apple Wireless
    Apple Hardware
    Apple Software
    Apple Desktops
    Apple Media
    Apple Networking
    OS 9
    OS X
    Apple Utilities

    Look, we're in the "Apple Laptop" category for the love of god, what is the deal?
    • by MisterSquid ( 231834 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:25PM (#4608409)

      Excluding my grandma who is sysadmin in a linux-only rendering farm (that's a joke), Apple is the only option consumers have to WinTel. Apple's tenacity, inventiveness, and rich *nixy-goodness is why Apple is the darling of the computing world these days, even at 6% market share.

      I'm not trolling, but I'm guessing you've not yet used a recent (4 years) machine made by Apple. (My apologies if I've put my foot in my ignormaus. Apple is becoming a favorite among newly converted geeks because they produce good stuff and because they're finally starting to get it: *nix, Photoshop, Apache, SSH, MS Office. Apple's laptops have no WinTel equivalent. The interaction between the command line and Aqua is something at which to gawk.

      On a less preach-to-the-choir note, is it so different than announcments for minor revisions of relatively arcane (if beloved) open source software? Not that I'm saying such posts are bad, but that it might be the nature of the Slashdot beast.

  • Still missing... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by TechScared ( 212975 )
    They are still missing USB 2.0 support. They are missing from most of the current PC laptops as well but I don't know why Apple didn't include one if they were coming out with *new* ibooks and powerbooks. Also, one another complaint I have on most laptops including a Dell I recently purchased is that even though I have essentially a portable DVD player which can hook up to a TV/Projecter, etc via S-Video, it doesn't contain a digital out and I'm stuck with stereo out. You would think multimedia conscious(whatever that means) Apple would think of these things...

    I guess nothing is perfect.
  • by rjstanford ( 69735 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:41AM (#4607991) Homepage Journal
    If you don't mind the 1024x768 display (and its a great screen, good antialiasing etc), the new low-end iBook is quite a deal. From apple.com, a 700mhz G3 (faster than PIII-800s seen in many low-end notebooks) with 640mb RAM (OSX is pretty memory intensive) can be yours for $1189. That's getting nicely price-competitive with Dell, etc on the low end.

    A somewhat nicer model with the 800mhz G3, a DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive and the same 640mb of RAM lists for $1489. That gets you a very potent UN*X box with a lot of wonderful features, a lovely OS, and a massively high portability level.

    All this, and an amazing attention to detail as well. Really, switching to Apple is like moving from Chevy to BMW. Sure it may not stack up on paper (horsepower per dollar, etc) but you can end up with an incredibly friendly machine that's a pure pleasure to use! Do yourself a favor and go check 'em out if you've been on the fence.

  • I just can't help but wonder why everyone seems to be so excited about Macs. If you ever want to run the latest game on that "other" OS, you can't really do it on Mac without paying a premium and/or having to wait forever for it to come out. And not just games, but other software too.

    Dell has a comparable deal [dell.com] that is $999 for an Inspiron 2650, comes with a free hard drive upgrade and a CD-burner (or DVD) upgrade. Not only that, but you get some really great tech support. And no, I don't work for dell. I just can't understand what all this jazz about getting an Apple is.

    Sure the Mac has cool looking hardware, but beyond that is there really a compelling reason for techies/nerds to switch from Intel/AMD based machines?? I can't think of any real good reasons.

    This is really not a troll, I'm just trying to understand what the hoopla is. Please enlighten me!!
    • 1. Mac OSX: It's Unix at the core with an easy interface and access to the technical guts if you want it. The interface is clean and more intuitive than most.

      2. Stability: On average(in my educated opinion in working with both Windows and Macintosh), Macs are more stable and recover from inevitable catastrophe better. There is also the general Total Cost of Ownership argument. Macs h ave, in many trials, proved to have a lower one on average.

      3. Respite from Microsoft: Looking at the high proliferation of viruses, the security issues and Microsoft's openly shady business practices, one of my reasons is that I simply don't trust Microsoft.

      4. Preference. Just because someone tells you one thing is better, it doesn't mean that it will be best for all.

      In general, games are not that much an issue when many Mac users just buy a cheap PC optimized toward gaming for what doesn't come to Mac and do their real work on a Macintosh. To many, PCs seem to equate to toys and I'm not one to argue with that assertion as one of the most common arguments for sticking with Windows is games.

      I use Macintosh because I get less aggravation from them. I have a little PC laptop that I use to play games that I can't get on Macintosh. I'm willing to wait to get games on my preferred platform, case in point Neverwinter Nights. The PC version is out with the Mac version pending. But I'll be waiting for the game to come on my platform of choice because I like using Mac better and I want to show support for my platform.

      Hope this helped, though I'm sure some could come up with more points. :)
    • by FreeUser ( 11483 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:11PM (#4608259)
      1) AMD and Intel have both embraced Microsoft's Pallaadium "trusted" computing nonsense, which may quite possibly be leveraged lock free operating systems out of the platform at some point in the future. IBM and Apple in contrast ARE NOT DOING THIS (at least at present), giving us the very ironic possibility that it will be Apple hardware in the future that is open (and able to dual boot alternative operating systems) and NOT Intel/AMD.

      2) The laptops have noticably longer battery life than their equivelent Intel counterparts

      3) and snazzy 16:10 displays...

      4) The high end model now comes with a DVD-RW burner and software

      5) The OS is Unix-like. Dual boot OS X with Gentoo PPC GNU/Linux, and you have the best of all possible worlds.

      That last point is the most important. My next laptop will almost certainly now be an Apple, with the DVD-RW burner. Of course, I'm not going to order them until shipping times become a couple of days, rather than a month, and I'll probably prefer just going to the store to buy one I can take home with me, but with this new release the Intel platform, with its Microsoft pre-installed crap (that I blow away anyway), its short battery life and no non-external DVD-RW burning options, has lost me as customer. Palladium has likely made that loss perminent.

      So yes, unlike many such promotional stories, I think this is a big deal, it is certainly News for Nerds, and for many readers, myself included, it is certainly Stuff That Matters.
    • by wirefarm ( 18470 ) <`jim' `at' `mmdc.net'> on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:32PM (#4608466) Homepage
      I've never had a machine that I liked using as much.

      The thing that makes a big difference for me is that the internationalization is seamless; right now, I'm converting a PHP app from English to Japanese. Using my iBook I can open the files from the Linux server using samba and easily convert the strings in the text editor that comes with Os X. If I have to do other editing to the code, I prefer vi, which comes standard. SSH is right there for me. My shell works the way I need it to, without installing Cygwin.

      I have 4 computers on my desk - Redhat/Japanese Windows dualboot IBM Thinkpad, 2 NT Workstations (Eng. & Jp.) and my iBook. I could use any of them that I wanted, but the iBook is what works best for me. (The RedHat box comes close, but I've tweaked the hell out of it to get it just right - it would take weeks to set up another box the same way, whereas I could pick up another iBook and replace this one instantly.)

      The suite of "iApps" (iCal, iTunes, iMovie, iPhoto, iEtc...) are a joy to use, better than anything you can get for Windows. Really. Mail filters out spam perfectly for me out of the box. Viruses? Not even an issue.

      Plus, every app looks great. I stare at the computer all day at work, it might as well look good. Let's face it, Windows is tired-looking, even XP, which to me looks cartoonish and pathetic.

      As for games, I wouldn't know - I haven't got time for them.

      After a while, you get to the point where you'll be happy to pay a bit more for a machine that actually works.

      Oh, yeah, BATTERY LIFE. Sweet.

  • No they don't, the iBooks are $200 cheaper across the range. As I mentioned in my submitted Slashdot story. Which was rejected. Not that I'm bitter.

    I'm convinced, anyway; the midrange iBook looks very compelling to me. All the OSS stuff I need plus Powerpoint without rebooting. I'll hopefully be ordering one later.
  • by smagoun ( 546733 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:50AM (#4608063) Homepage
    The Powerbooks are a fantastic deal. Here's how a similar Dell stacks up to the high-end powerbook.

    I chose the Dell Inspiron line, since they have a better price/performance ratio than the Latitudes. The only Inspiron that's in the ballpark, weight-wise, is the 4150 (5.6-6.5lbs, 1.47" thick). The powerbook wins this one hands-down.

    I configured it w/ a 2.0Ghz P4, SXGA+ screen, and the best available video card: a 32MB Radeon 7500 Mobility. A 2.2Ghz CPU runs +$200USD, subtract $200 for a 1.7Ghz CPU. The powerbook only has a 1Ghz CPU, but that's Apples and oranges (ha, ha). The Powerbook has a better GPU (Radeon 9000) and more video ram (64MB).

    Next up...drives. The powerbook comes w/ a Superdrive and a 60GB HDD. The best the Dell can do is a DVD/CD-RW and a 40GB HDD.

    I configured both systems with 1GB RAM, a 3-year warranty, and a pro operating system (OSX, XP Pro). Both got internal wireless (included on the Apple, extra on the Dell). Both have an internal NIC and internal modem, although the powerbook has 1000BT and the Dell only has 100BT.

    The Dell comes out to $3042, the Powerbook is $3,388. Subtract $200 from the PB if you only want the combo drive that's in the Dell and not a Superdrive.

    The Powerbook is a hell of a deal...better video, faster networking, better HDD and optical drive, better OS, smaller form factor, better engineering, and only a very small price premium.

    (The usual disclaimers apply. This is one comparison out of a million possible comparisons. Size/weight are important to me, that's why I didn't look at the Inspiron 8200, blah blah blah.)

    • Try configuring a latitude 640. Actually a better deal I think. Can't quite get the same specs though, and the display is smaller. Still, point well taken, powerbooks and iBooks are definately not out of range with comparably equipped x86 laptops.

      Yea, I held out on replacing my powerbook until today :)

    • by jefflinwood ( 20955 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:28PM (#4608432) Homepage
      I use an Inspiron 4xxx series (14" screen) and a Powerbook G4 regularly, and there is no comparison between the systems. My Dell is falling apart after a year - one bay no longer holds a drive, the battery is good for 5 (five) minutes of use with the 802.11b card on, the screen has blemishes, there is a dead pixel, adn the power button appears to have melted. The Powerbook is just as sharp as the day it left the factory.

      The Dell seems a lot thicker than the powerbook, I'm not sure what the actual specs are. It's also got a cheap plastic case, not Titanium.

      The Dell was a lot cheaper, though. The Inspiron 8xxx series is a giant monster, and is more comparable to lugging around an iMac than a Powerbook.
  • by mtec ( 572168 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:54AM (#4608102)
    but I've used a (current) top'o the line TiBook - and it flies. I'm not talking about benchmarks (I know - sacrilege here), just how it feels. The tech-lust gene kicks in a big way when you have your hands on the keyboard. you feel like you're piloting a titanium Lear jet. I know this sounds like a commercial (modders, do your worst..), but the combination of the Ti and the iPod is like a dream come true for me (more so when I upgrade my 550). OS X - Classic - Unix - Virtual PC - and with 6 (count 'em) SIX - unabridged books (from Audible.com) in my iTunes which autosync (and bookmark my spot!) to iPod ranging from A.C. Clarke to business to Ayn Rand.

    Closest I've come to tech Nirvana...

    Sorry...I'm tech drunk - I've said too much - (but you're some of the few people in the world who can understand).
    Forgive me.
  • by mrpuffypants ( 444598 ) <mrpuffypants&gmail,com> on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @11:57AM (#4608133)
    Apple Computer on Wednesday updated its entire portable line, most notably adding its first PowerBook capable of burning DVDs.

    The PowerBook line now includes an 867MHz model, available now for $2,299, and a 1GHz model that can both burn and read CDs and DVDs. That model will be available later this month for $2,999.

    "This is what our customers have been waiting for," Greg Joswiak, Apple's vice president of hardware marketing, said in a statement. He noted that the new PowerBook is the first notebook with a slot-loading drive that can burn DVDs.

    As expected, Apple also bumped up the speed of all of its iBooks by 100MHz while dropping the price of each model by $200. The consumer portables also sport improved graphics now, using ATI Technologies' Mobility Radeon 7500 chip with up to 32MB of graphics memory.

    With the faster ATI chip, the iBook can now take advantage of the improved Quartz Extreme graphics engine built into the latest version of Mac OS X.

    The three iBook models consist of a $999 model with a 700MHz chip, a 12.1-inch screen, a CD-ROM drive, 128MB of memory and a 20GB hard drive; a $1,299 model with an 800MHz chip, a 12.1-inch screen, a combination CD-rewritable/DVD-ROM drive, 128MB of memory and a 30GB hard drive; and a $1,599 model with an 800MHz chip, a 14-inch screen, a CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive, 256MB of memory and a 30GB hard drive.

    As for the PowerBooks, the low-end model comes with a CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive, 256MB of memory and a 40GB hard drive. In addition to the DVD burner, the high-end model includes 512MB of memory, a 60GB hard drive and a preinstalled Airport card for wireless networking.
  • Winter in Whistler (Score:5, Interesting)

    by snowlick ( 536497 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:03PM (#4608185) Homepage
    Anyone else see the name on the DVD the next to the laptop on apple.com? it read: "Winter in Whistler". I sense a swipe at Windows XP!

  • No USB 2.0? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by porkchop_d_clown ( 39923 ) <.mwheinz. .at. .me.com.> on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:37PM (#4608513) Homepage
    I looked for it on the web site, but I didn't see a mention about USB 2.0 support. Since external FireWire storage devices seem to be getting driven out of the market place (judging from my local Staples and CompUSA) it would have been nice to see this feature.
    • Re:No USB 2.0? (Score:3, Informative)

      by BlueGecko ( 109058 )
      Apple has said several times at shareholder meeting that they will not adopt USB 2.0. Generally speaking, Apple feels that it alone is responsible for the success of USB 1.0 in the first place, and therefore is pissed that Intel would target their FireWire technology with USB 2.0. Essentially, Apple feels as if Intel is backstabbing them.

      All that said, I don't see FireWire going anywhere. I do see it redefining its niche to be purely high-bandwidth applications such as video cameras and very fast external drives. Do remember, however, that FireWire 2 is due very soon and will literally double the bandwidth. Could change things considerably.
      • Ditto and... (Score:3, Informative)

        by BiOFH ( 267622 )
        ...Firewire's life is and will be driven by DV cameras not external disks. As long as the cam manufacturers continue to use Firewire (and Sony is going to, rest assured), then USB will not kill Firewire.

        Besides, recent test results have shown that USB may not be the Firewire killer it's touted to be in real-world situations.

  • Good Timing (Score:5, Interesting)

    by WesHertlein ( 535542 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @12:58PM (#4608728)

    Well, I seemed to have lucked out with my first Apple purchase. One of the first e-mails I looked at this morning:

    To Our Valued Apple Customer:

    Apple is pleased to announce a new generation of iBooks with faster processor speeds. We invite you to visit the Apple Store at http://www.apple.com/store [apple.com] for details.

    Your 600Mhz iBook has been upgraded to a 700Mhz iBook at no additional charge. If you would like to review the changes made to your order, visit http://www.apple.com/orderstatus [apple.com].

    If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at the number below. Thank you for choosing Apple!

    Yup, that's right. My bad luck, I just ordered an iBook last week. This is a *very* cool move by Apple... they simply canceled my old order (for the low end model) and swapped in a new order (for the low end model). I'm saving $200 + tax on this, and getting a faster model.

    Quick note for those who recommend gobs of RAM... that's done and done. Same day I ordered the iBook, I placed an order with Coast To Coast Memory for an addition 512 MB. $95 after tax and shipping, and it's already here.

    That's the downside... I wanted the laptop this week. At least they had a good excuse for not getting it to me. :)

  • by occam ( 20826 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @01:00PM (#4608754)
    Wow, Apple achieved the difficult goal of adding the portable superdrive. Cool!

    But Apple has been touting the virtues of BlueTooth for nearly a year (January MacWorld) and no machine yet has it built in? They didn't even add it to their new PB? What gives? Steve, hello; are you listening to your own hype? How about walking some of that talk?

    Radeon 9000 --- finally. I guess I'm still waiting for their BT portables. Get rid of the dongle. At least they finally are including the 802.11b adapters with two of the three configurations (a first!). That should be built-in standard as well (for all portables).

    Apple has done a pioneering and hassle-free job of integrating wireless and BT. With their hub strategy, you'd think they'd tout all that awesome work by shipping standard to take advantage of 802.11b and BT.

    Fingers crossed for next edition PB (including BT and 802.11b (802.11g?)).
  • by skeeter1001 ( 551268 ) on Wednesday November 06, 2002 @03:26PM (#4610340)
    Not only did they release the new upgrades -- they contacted those of us that have placed orders which have not shipped yet and offered us an upgrade. Granted -- the upgrade offered was "at no additional cost" even though the new system cost $400 LESS! I pointed that out and they made the necessary adjustments :) WAY TO GO APPLE!

Disks travel in packs.