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Apple PowerBook G4 (17-inch) review: Apple PowerBook G4 (17-inch)

This PowerBook comes with a full range of connectivity features: Both AirPort Extreme (802.11g Wi-Fi) and Bluetooth 2.0 (Enhanced Data Rate) come standard, and you also get 10/100/1000BaseT Gigabit Ethernet and a 56Kbps V.92 modem. There are only two USB 2.0 ports, but Apple makes up for this by including both an unpowered FireWire 400 and a powered FireWire 800 port. Also onboard are a DVI output, an S-Video output for connecting to a TV, optical digital audio input and output, and a PC Card slot. Apple throws in a strong software bundle that features iLife '05 as well as Art Directors Toolkit and QuickBooks New User Edition. Sadly, you won't find the iWork productivity suite, which would have been a useful addition.

Some of Apple's support policies are downright stingy. You get only 90 days of toll-free telephone support, so it's up to you to ask every question you'll ever have during those first three months. Otherwise, Apple offers an industry-standard one-year warranty for parts and labor. After that, you'll have to go it alone with the printed user guide and the online forums and help resources that Apple provides on the support section of its site. The documents can be a bit much to wade through, but the forums are a great place to get help from other users. Extending your support options is expensive--the $349 AppleCare Protection Plan gives you three years of phone support and repairs.

iTunes MP3 conversion
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
In seconds  

Photoshop CS
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
In minutes  
Power Mac G4-1.25GHz
7.75 

Unreal Tournament 2004
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In frames per second  
Power Mac G4-1.25GHz
22.49 

DVD movie battery-drain test
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
In hours  

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