Pros Outstanding keyboard & breath-taking screen; plenty of power for the road.
Cons 90 day phone support is miserly to be polite; cost of AppleCare for laptop too high.
Summary The c/net comparison of this machine to a ThinkPad is misleading - the ThinkPad does not have a backlit keyboard or scrolling trackpad, comes with a 60GB hard drive instead of 80, and is not a wide-screen model.
For anyone coming over from Windows the elegance and security of OS X will be more than worth any small premium in price. This computer has the best keyboard being made - laptop OR full-sized, a beautiful screen, and plenty of performance. Battery life can be extended significantly by setting the CPU to "automatic" or "reduced" performance and turning the screen backlight, which is almost TOO bright on full, down a couple of notches.
Besides being beauties PowerBooks are beasts: they can take a licking and keep on ticking. Better yet the aluminum case is hard to scratch or mar so a quick wipe with a cloth and your travel companion looks like new again, even after rough use like being thrown in a backpack with books & DVDs, etc.
Obviously connectivity with iPod is top notch, and the FW 400 and 800 cabablity make using external storage fast and easy. The only possible disappointment with this machine is its wifi reception which could be better - it's not bad, tho.
I've had a lot of laptops in the past 20 years (including ThinkPads) and the PowerBook 15 is definitely the best, by a wide margin.
Pros Everything works just like I expect it to . . . intuitive, user friendly, no surprises except that it really works!
Cons Only one complaint: strange keyboard arrangement is difficult to get used to.
Summary I wrote an original "first imression" right after I bought the unit. I am still "in love" and probably will switch out all my PC's (when their time comes) for MAC's. It's great to finally get a machine that actually does exactly what I bought it for, without having it complain or crash or having to "update" constant patches and workarounds. I had difficulty at first, linking wirelessly to my networked Epson printer, on my PC network, but found that it was the fault of the Windows XP OS and after reinstalling from a clean drive there, the MAC had no difficulty whatsoever recognizing the network and printing, wirelessly, to the two Epson printers hard wired to other PC's on it. What a jewel, what a pleasure this machine is.
Pros very thin and light for such a full-featured notebook; OSX Tiger; class
Cons aluminum can be tough to clean
Summary The author states, "...on a pure hardware basis, the PowerBook G4 comes at a premium: a similarly configured ThinkPad T43, for example, costs $500 less."
This is a ridiculous comparison. The ThinkPad T43 is far from "similarly configured." The ThinkPad mentioned has a 14.1" screen (compared to the PowerBook's 15.2" widescreen). The ThinkPad also has a 60GB hard drive and lacks Firewire (IEE1394) ports. The PowerBook in question comes with an 80GB hard drive (no small difference in a laptop) and both Firewire 400 and Firewire 800. Admittedly, the ThinkPad has a lot more mouse buttons, a more cramped keyboard, and a parallel port (does anyone use it any more?). Of course, the Powerbook comes with built-in Bluetooth (something I'll actually use).
I'm on my second PowerBook and I would buy a third. It's easily portable, light, fully featured, and a good value for the money.
Pros Light weight, powerful, great design, bright screen, better battery life than any of my PC laptops and it looks good!
Cons Had to also purchase Virtual PC / Windows XP for two programs. Good news is it works, bad news is it crashes just like always.
Summary First Mac I have ever owned... Beats every other PC I have bought. Tiger OS is much easier than expected to transition to and very seemless migration from Windows programs. No need to buy another Windows machine.
Pros Overall User Experience
Cons None to Mention
Summary This laptop has no significant shortcoming. When purchased with AppleCare for American Speaking 24-7 customer service and a .Mac Account for powerful Apple On-Line goodies galore one has the finest computing experience on the planet. Want to take thing 1 step farther add ProCare for super high profile service and up to 1-hr in-store training. Who would ever consider another brand or platform.