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pvera's Journal: A year with a Titanium Powerbook G4

Journal by pvera

My laptop will be a year old in April 30th and I am already planning to ditch her.

Nothing really wrong with it, but I want to get rid of my wife's Dell and what we decided is she is taking over the Titanium Powerbook and I will get a 15" Aluminium G4 1.25 GHz with Superdrive. I almost got her a 12" iBook G4 but it was not worth the hassle to try to sell the Powerbook. And that means I can go ahead and pay for Apple Care.

After spending a year working 40-60 hours a week plus at least another 15-20 hours at home with it, I have come to notice its many qualities and flaws:

1. Wireless reception is poor due to the Faraday effect of the Titanium casing. My old iBook 600 had at least twice the range of the Powerbook.
2. The casing flexes a lot. And the lid is warped.
3. The latch is as weak as the one in the iBook 600.
4. The hinge is very strong!
5. Apple makes the worst AC adapters for a laptop computer. Between the iBook and the Powerbook I have gone thru at least six adapters so far. The current design of the adapter has many little changes that are designed to address points of failure that I experienced last year, so this is not that much of a big problem anymore.
6. It does not get as hot as the Germans would have you believe.
7. Battery life is decent if you are willing to dim the screen and stay away from the combo drive.
8. The combo drive is bullet proof.
9. The Titanium casing is shit. Not only flexes, but the paint bubbles and scratches too easily.
10. All those ports in the back are a retarded idea. The only plug in the back should be the power.
11. Somebody at Apple should have figured out by now that they need to have clearance between the LCD and the keys. All it takes is to sink the keys an extra mm into the casing! I tried to use LCD shields, but these add tension to the latch and also help warp the lid even worse.
12. The Timbuk2 laptop sleeve is the perfect padding to carry your Titanium Powerbook in a bag. I use mine with a Timbuk2 El Ocho messenger bag. You can have mine, but only when you can pry it off my cold, dead fingers.
13. Laptop podiums work very nice with this laptop and do help keep it cool.
14. Even with a Gig of ram (and this is a 867) Macromedia Dreamweaver MX and VPC 6.1 (with XP Pro) still run like shit.
15. I don't like the sleeping light in the Powerbook. The one in the iBook is nicer.
16. Don't eat within 6 feet of this computer. The keyboard magically sucks in any dirt, crumbs and dog hair that comes within 6 feet. If you opt to use an iSkin for the keyboard, don't get the black one, it sucks! Use any other but the black one (the white one is nice) because the plastic is different and feels, well, yucky.

Overall it is a hell of a computer. I am glad the new ones are anodized Aluminum because the damn paint issue is starting to drive me insane. I am going to send it to Apple to check the lid and hopefully they can retouch the bubbles too.

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A year with a Titanium Powerbook G4

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