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New iBook and Apple mini

CmdrTaco posted about 9 years ago | from the meet-the-new-box dept.

Portables (Apple) 480

shintaro writes "ThinkSecret reports that 'Apple delivers iBook, Mac mini updates July 26 - Apple updated its iBook and Mac mini lines Tuesday, increasing standard RAM across the board to 512MB and improving other specs. Missing from the iBook update was the long-rumored move to a widescreen model which unconfirmed reports had suggested might arrive with the revision.' "

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480 comments

Who's going to buy it ? (0, Flamebait)

Arthur B. (806360) | about 9 years ago | (#13166175)

When x86 mac is coming... it'd feel obsolete very soon.

Think Seceret Reports? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166249)

The new gear's been on Apple's site for half a day now!

It's such an incremental upgrade that you'd have to be a spec-pert to have any idea what's changed.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (2, Insightful)

CdBee (742846) | about 9 years ago | (#13166283)

Apple's core home-user base only really use the built-in apps and things like MS Office, all of which will be available for years on PPC. It's not like a Windows machne where the ending of support leaves you virus-prone and vulnerable. You can be sure that OSS projects like Firefox and OpenOffice will be available ad infinitum too.

I'm on the point of buying a used G4 powermac as my main machine,although I considered and rejected a Mac Mini (due to the lack of expansibility)

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (5, Insightful)

Malacon (761384) | about 9 years ago | (#13166288)

Anyone that needs a new iBook.

Although the intel switch will be monumental for sure, there will certainly be a market for PPC macs for a while. regardless of whats coming a year from now, or even two years, people still need to upgrade. Of course it will suck when the new machines come out and blow these away but thats the way computers work.

I needed a laptop, and last month I bought a refurb iBook from Last rev (2 revs now). I know the intel machines are coming out, but when? Some people simply can't wait.

Even aside from that, I'm sure plenty of people will be clinging to PPC for a while, just like they do classic. Thats why apple kept one Classic bootable machine around for so long. People wanted and in some cases needed it, and it sold fairly well. And when the last PPC machine disappears from Apples site, it will make news on Slashdot just as the last Classic bootable Mac did.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (2, Insightful)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about 9 years ago | (#13166350)

Although the intel switch will be monumental for sure,

The only thing monumental in the Intel switch is the feeling of disbelief and the gaping mouths of the most devout Mac fanbois who can't get used to the idea.

All it involves is: new motherboard (if not just more or less new CPU), recompile OSX, test, ship.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (1)

Stick_Fig (740331) | about 9 years ago | (#13166486)

Just a clarification for your agrument: The mini is still bootable from classic, along with most of the laptops, so that day still hasn't come yet.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (1)

tangledbank (902770) | about 9 years ago | (#13166293)

Not for me. It's going to be at least 5 years before the intels get any kind of a foothold, and at least 8 before they get anywhere near the market share of the PPCs. 8 years for a $399 computer is a great buy.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (2, Informative)

Admiral Ackbar 8 (848624) | about 9 years ago | (#13166409)

Not for me. It's going to be at least 5 years before the intels get any kind of a foothold, and at least 8 before they get anywhere near the market share of the PPCs. 8 years for a $399 computer is a great buy.

What are you talking about? 5 years before Intel gets a foothold? Within a year *most* new Macs will be Intel based. Most folks upgrade every 3 years; so within 3 years you will see mostly Intel Macs.

I am not even sure what "8 years for a $399 computer is a great buy." even means. There aren't any $399 Macs that I know of.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (2, Insightful)

mitchell_pgh (536538) | about 9 years ago | (#13166371)

Actually, now is a perfect time to buy. Many Mac users own their computers for 3+ years before even considering upgrading. Generally speaking, if you play the "wait and see" game with Apple hardware... you'll NEVER upgrade.

The pricing is very competitive. With the CPU bump, graphics card bump, RAM bump, Bluetooth bump, $999 is an amazing deal... for a Mac.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166379)

Same people who buy cars even tho newer cars are just around the corner.

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (4, Insightful)

sgant (178166) | about 9 years ago | (#13166427)

How are people leaping to the conclusion that when the x86 Macs come out that everything that's come before will all-of-a-sudden become obsolete?

You buy an iBook today, you can use it for years until the thing is too old to keep going...then you go out and buy a new one.

You know...just like any other computer out there. Software won't be a problem with Apple's developers plan with being able to compile both PPC and x86 into the same build.

Come on...

Re:Who's going to buy it ? (1)

Pxtl (151020) | about 9 years ago | (#13166512)

Well, iirc Apple did leave a lot of 9 users out in the cold when OSX was released. That track record doesn't bode well for new apps supporting PPC architecture. Remember when MS started releasing Win9x-incompatible versions of MediaPlayer and Messenger? Apple can do the same, leaving the legacy users out in the cold.

Sweet Spot (5, Insightful)

ralphb (15998) | about 9 years ago | (#13166177)

The $599 Mac Mini is a great bargain. For just $100 more than the base unit, you get double the HD space, WiFi, Bluetooth, and a faster processor, but you give up the 56K modem (not a problem for most people). The $699 upgrade only adds a DVD±RW/CD-RW SuperDrive instead of the Combo drive (DVD/CD-RW) if you need to burn DVDs.

Re:Sweet Spot (2, Informative)

GraZZ (9716) | about 9 years ago | (#13166305)

It's a good deal compared to powerbooks; going from the 12" combo-drive to super-drive model costs you $200 [apple.com] .

Re:Sweet Spot (5, Informative)

coop0030 (263345) | about 9 years ago | (#13166349)

Yea, but they still don't have 64MB of Video RAM on the Mac Minis.

Why can't they just bump it up to 64MB so that it can support all the nice graphical effects of the dashboard?!?

How much could it possibly cost to do this paltry upgrade?

Re:Sweet Spot (1, Interesting)

timster (32400) | about 9 years ago | (#13166454)

The single graphical effect that you refer to is friggin' annoying. Why does anybody care?

Re:Sweet Spot (2, Insightful)

hattig (47930) | about 9 years ago | (#13166502)

It's not the amount of memory that is the issue, it is needing a GPU that can handle it.

The new iBooks can with the 32MB Radeon 9550 they have onboard.

I'm not buying a Mac Mini until they have a 64MB Radeon 9600 or similar on-board. Mainly because for an iBook with a 1024x768 display 32MB is adequate, but for a desktop machine you need more for higher resolution displays.

Re:Sweet Spot (1)

eclectic4 (665330) | about 9 years ago | (#13166685)

Exactly. My GeForce Ti with 128 MB RAM won't give me the "ripple" effect in widgets. It's not the RAM.

Re:Sweet Spot (1)

mbbac (568880) | about 9 years ago | (#13166602)

"How much could it possibly cost to do this paltry upgrade?"

$0.25

Sour Spot (0, Flamebait)

NineNine (235196) | about 9 years ago | (#13166363)

...Or, you can get the equivalent Windows PC with a monitor, mouse and keyboard for the same price.

Re:Sour Spot (1, Troll)

Doc Ruby (173196) | about 9 years ago | (#13166580)

Apple has really come a long way when the best snipe a PC partisan has got is "the equivalent Windows PC costs the same", rather than "costs half as much". Now Apple only has to work on the "equivalent" part - which is almost entirely perception. With the best brand recognition in the world, Apple probably already has that beat, except among Windows diehards.

Re:Sweet Spot (1, Flamebait)

dsginter (104154) | about 9 years ago | (#13166384)

The $599 Mac Mini is a great bargain. For just $100 more than the base unit, you get...

...a PC that is $300 more than a $299 Dell [dell.com] ?

Re:Sweet Spot (1)

bigbigbison (104532) | about 9 years ago | (#13166548)

I know I shouldn't get involved in this, but that is one crappy Dell. A celeron processor, intel integrated graphics, no dvd drive and only 256mb of ram? Sure you get a monitor, mouse and keyboard, but I think I'd pass on that...

Re:Sweet Spot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166668)

Actualy, the more comparable Dell configuration [dell.com] is this $626 config, with no monitor but with a combo drive, wireless networking, firewire, and the XP Pro operating system (which is more comparable to OS X than XP Home is), if you add $59 to the price of the mini for the keyboard and mouse and take say $65 off the price of the Dell for the printer (i.e., Apple $658 versus Dell $551). That's assuming that Apple has killed their "buy a Mac with a printer and get $100 back" deal.

Re:Sweet Spot (1)

Daniel832US (530981) | about 9 years ago | (#13166401)

I bought the current $599 version a few months ago. The bluetooth addition would have been nice (I had to buy a cheap USB-bluetooth to have a wireless keyboard/mouse), but I'm one of the "not-most-people" in a rural area with a modem being the only way to connect :( I did pop in a 1GB memory stick in--it really wasn't that bad to install. I just wish I could get them to switch me over at work... once you've gotten used to using the command key, it's hard to go back :)

Re:Sweet Spot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166443)

If I can trouble you, what kind of RAM did you use? I'm looking to do the upgrade on mine, but confirmed-working memory info is really hard to find.

Re:Sweet Spot (2, Informative)

Clockwurk (577966) | about 9 years ago | (#13166539)

The best bargain is getting the $599 model off ebay. I got mine new in box for $500 (the same model from apple would have been over 600 with tax). I'm a little miffed that I got one before they put 512 RAM as standard (OSX isn't worth running with 256), but cracking open the mini and upgrading the RAM wasn't that hard (just search for mac mini service manual and you get the apple manual for dealers that explains everything).

Attention Apple Fags! (0, Troll)

Asshat Canada (804093) | about 9 years ago | (#13166180)

Don't forget to snap your thin gay dicks shut in the widescreen lid!

What if we wait ... (0, Redundant)

Ganniterix (863430) | about 9 years ago | (#13166192)

I care venture a tought ... wouldn't it be interesting to wait for Apple computers built around Intel Centrino ???

512 Mb RAM (5, Insightful)

Myrmi (730278) | about 9 years ago | (#13166194)

At last, 512Mb RAM in the Mac Mini - far and away the largest complaint about the happy little box. Apple may now have just invented a license to print money.

Re:512 Mb RAM (2, Interesting)

Just Some Guy (3352) | about 9 years ago | (#13166261)

Amen. I just moved from the "that looks nice, but..." category to the "here's my Visa" queue. $599 now buys me the computer I want, rather than a down payment on the computer I'd use as a starting point.

bop (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166195)

Appletastic

AHHHHHH! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166201)

AHHHHHHH!

yawn.... (0, Troll)

jurv!s (688306) | about 9 years ago | (#13166208)

nothing to see here.

Sig holds truth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166613)

interesting modding you got.. considering your sig! take your own advice a$$hat!

Mac Mini + (5, Insightful)

TimTheFoolMan (656432) | about 9 years ago | (#13166209)

The higher end Mac Mini looks much better now. Adding in Bluetooth and Airport makes $599 look more reasonable, and $699 for a Superdrive model makes a good deal of sense.

It should have been this way from day 1. :-(

Tim

Re:Mac Mini + (1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about 9 years ago | (#13166240)

It should have been this way from day 1. :-(

Yeees, and I should have been able to get as much power as my Athlon machine back in 1995 for the same price as today...

Re:Mac Mini + (2, Insightful)

TimTheFoolMan (656432) | about 9 years ago | (#13166287)

It's been less than 6 months since introduction. Have Bluetooth and Airport Extreme components become that much cheaper in this timeframe? (I'm asking honestly, because I don't know the answer.)

My guess is that it is a competitive response, and not based on technology advance.

Tim

Re:Mac Mini + (4, Insightful)

EggyToast (858951) | about 9 years ago | (#13166592)

Incidentally they have. 6-7 months ago, a bluetooth dongle/adapter thing was at least $30. Now they're easily had for $10 or less. I bought one the other day for $6.

Wireless has also been falling in price quite a bit over just the last year. To the point where people are giving them away? no, but they are becoming standard components.

I see adding these features in as standard is more a way for Apple to consolidate their lines and features. In other words, From Now On All Apples Have Wireless And Bluetooth. That's a nice thing to be able to say. It's less confusing for consumers and allows developers to assume standard features in the future.

Re:Mac Mini + (1)

Suburbanpride (755823) | about 9 years ago | (#13166332)

for use as a remote media center, the mac mini looks great, but im a bit disapointed with the weak video card that won't take advantage of tigers CoreImage features. I wonder if apple is going to release a OSX Medi Center edition since these mini's aren't optimised for tiger.

old (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166214)

kinda neat how this is not new news :/

Re:old (1)

richdun (672214) | about 9 years ago | (#13166269)

Not new? It came out today, about an hour or so ago.

Another rumor site ... (5, Funny)

Titusdot Groan (468949) | about 9 years ago | (#13166217)

I've also seen this rumor on another site [apple.com] ...

Re:Another rumor site ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166697)

I have to have it! It makes my COCK all hard! [imageshack.us]

Why link to ThinkSecret? (4, Informative)

sczimme (603413) | about 9 years ago | (#13166227)


That's nice, but why link to ThinkSecret when Apple's iBook page has much more detailed information [apple.com] ?

Re:Why link to ThinkSecret? (5, Informative)

CokeBear (16811) | about 9 years ago | (#13166408)

Best source of info for the geek crowd would be direct links to the specs pages:

http://www.apple.com/ibook/specs.html [apple.com]

http://www.apple.com/macmini/specs.html [apple.com]

Don't you love Apple URLs? Even if you don't have a link to click, you can guess at most of them!

Here's why (1)

EvilStein (414640) | about 9 years ago | (#13166657)

Slashdot is an "advertising portal" site these days. Linking to 2 year old articles with tons of banner ads all over them instead of the readily available printer friendly versions is becoming commonplace.

New Specs, Same Price, FREE (-1, Troll)

cmstar (521171) | about 9 years ago | (#13166250)

Get them for free:

Here [freeminimacs.com]
Here [macminis4free.com]

and last but not least

Here [gearlive.com]

Why do they do that? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166265)

From the article...

"The displays of both iBooks continue to feature native 1024x768 resolutions and are driven by an ATI Mobility Radeon 9550 with 32MB of video memory, not enough to take advantage of Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger's new Core Image technologies."

Why don't they start revising hardware so that it can actually use all the features of their great software?

Re:Why do they do that? (1)

Com2Kid (142006) | about 9 years ago | (#13166406)

I agree, 1024x768 is far to low of a resolution, and any software system that takes over 32MB of video RAM is crazy!

Though honestly, with RAM so cheap, why doesn't it have 64MB, or at least support shared memory, so I can grab 32MB of the system RAM?

Re:Why do they do that? (1)

j!mmy v. (613784) | about 9 years ago | (#13166649)

Sigh. Because, with Apple:

i* = enry-level

Power* = does the stuff people would post to slashdot asking for


...and it's been that way a long time. If you're the sort of user that would care in any way about Core technologies beyond the "ooh" factor, the i-line isn't marketed at you.

And busting a shell doesn't need 1024*768.

Re:Why do they do that? (4, Informative)

UserChrisCanter4 (464072) | about 9 years ago | (#13166555)

That statement in the article was slightly off. 32MB of RAM is not enough for the iBook to take advantage of GPU-accelerated Core Image technologies. The Core Image system is designed to scale, and will revert to using Altivec instructions if the GPU is not up to par.

I'll agree that the systems should simply include 64MB of RAM, but I also expected more of the writers at a mac-centric site such as thinksecret.

Re:Why do they do that? (1)

Pxtl (151020) | about 9 years ago | (#13166570)

Who cares? The fact that they've got a sexy 9550 chipset in there at all is good enough news to me. I'm disappointed with the fact that no Mini has anything with modern shader support (9200 is a last-gen board). I mean, I know I can't be alone in my approach to building a box (get the cheapest POS Dell makes and drop in more ram and a new-gen low/mid 3d card).

Re:Why do they do that? (4, Informative)

hattig (47930) | about 9 years ago | (#13166634)

The Radeon 9550 has the required technology to enable CoreImage entirely on the GPU.

The 32MB VRAM shouldn't be an issue - it might slow it down a bit, but that's all.

zzzaaahhhggwaaahh (3, Interesting)

rinoid (451982) | about 9 years ago | (#13166272)

Oh, just woke up and found a drool puddle oozing out of my keyboard...

The Mini is a great little machine. Worth the money.

The iBook is a dead horse. OK, it's not horrible for $1000.00 but they could do better.

In fact their entire (oh! all six?) portable line is stale and going nowhere fast. Where are the innovations? The better screens? The tablet? (they practically led the way with HWR and it's in OSX as Ink). What about the built-in media reader? I like that feature on my M-In_Law's HP book.

On another topic but closely related, I can't wait to see how the Intel transition plays out and what new growth engines they'll introduce. I'd hate to think that Apple will continue to play so conservatively with their computer (designs, features, specs) because as it stands that's where they are.

Re:zzzaaahhhggwaaahh (1)

Stick_Fig (740331) | about 9 years ago | (#13166433)

My feeling is Apple's stuck between a rock and a hard place; they really don't feel they can come up with a major innovation until they can start moving the line to a new processor. Because IBM did nothing to make G5s possible on the Powerbook, it weakened the entire line.

Jesus, G5s have been around for two years, and we've seen no room for portable innovation in terms of horsepower.

That said, adding shitloads of new features like the ones you're suggesting kinda goes against Apple's core minimalism philosophy. It's not conservatism, it's not fucking with a good thing too much.

Re:zzzaaahhhggwaaahh (2, Insightful)

valhallaprime (749304) | about 9 years ago | (#13166461)

Agreed, And especially with the addition of a 9550 with 32MB, now we can once again never think of playing any modern game, or have full Core-Image support. Seriously. A 9550. At 32MB. What, did ATI have some lying around from 2003 and decided to cut apple a deal on a few truckfulls of the chipset? I would LOVE to see how the marketing department sat around brainstorming the copy for this hardware upgrade/addition. Also, although it's been said before, why oh why does the 14" STILL have only a 1024 screen?

Re:zzzaaahhhggwaaahh (1)

MooseByte (751829) | about 9 years ago | (#13166492)


"The iBook is a dead horse. OK, it's not horrible for $1000.00 but they could do better."

I still think the 12" 1.2GHz G4 iBook is the sweet spot in terms of function, performance and value. I pimped mine out with 1.25GB RAM, and with the Airport built in it's one sweet mobile unit.

I'ts solid, it's got good battery life (GHz don't come free when you figure in battery life), and the thing just constantly works.

I've had Macs going back to the 512K "Fat Mac" way back when, and I consider my iBook to the best "bang for the buck" so far.

If this one got ripped off, I'd replace it immediately with the equivalent sibling today.

Re:zzzaaahhhggwaaahh (4, Insightful)

buckhead_buddy (186384) | about 9 years ago | (#13166688)

I'm sure there are some new designs, form factors, and technology innovations designed, tested, and ready to go in Apple's labs. But Apple has two threats hanging over it, right now:
  • Investors wary of an "Osborne effect"
  • A desire to force most upgrades only after the Intel transition
Until the Intel transition we'll ONLY see smaller price reductions or simple spec increases to drive sales. Apple has no incentive to bring out a radical new form factor such as a tablet or wide screen iBook. That'd only make people more likely to hang on to the older PowerPC tech.

What I find somewhat amazing is that Apple hasn't felt the need to really drop its prices on its professional gear. There are a few "bundles" and rebates, but my guess is that Apple intends to set Intel Macs near these same price points and don't want the move to Intel to look like a major price increase. What's even more likely is that Apple and Apple geeks are experienced with the "Mac OS 9" effect and thus see the time to the Intel transition as their "last chance" to buy the current tech they are familiar with. And until there's a sharp drop in sales figures we aren't going to see any price cuts.

Personally, I'm doing my best to wait for the Intel macs that will almost certainly have new Ive cases and new tech innovations besides "just" an Intel chip. I'm running an ancient TiBook so I'm drooling over current Macs in almost all form factors, but since I don't really need the speed I'm trying to make do with small spec upgrades until the major revisions of their whole line. Sounds kind of like the strategy Apple is using :-)

prediction? (1)

sewagemaster (466124) | about 9 years ago | (#13166277)

As predicted [slashdot.org] by a fellow poster.

Apple mini? (3, Insightful)

baryon351 (626717) | about 9 years ago | (#13166278)

The iBook and Mac mini were the ones updated, and it's not so much a new Mac mini as a revision of the line. They're no quicker, just the higher end one loses its superdrive and gains airport+bluetooth as standard, and a newer more expensive higher-end one gets the superdrive back again, along with the 512MB default across the board.

The Mac minis are still 1.25GHz and 1.42GHz models.

the iBook 14 looks to be a better gain in value than others. It gets the powerbook scroller trackpad, powerbook motion sensor, new graphics card (as do all the others), 512MB RAM and bluetooth/airport as standard while also getting a decent price DROP.

Still, whether or not it's enough of a gain in value to keep the competing PC laptops away given their speed advantages now is something else entirely. Guess that comes down to how much OS X and iBook design is worth to a particular buyer.

Re:Apple mini? (4, Insightful)

javaxman (705658) | about 9 years ago | (#13166485)

They're no quicker

While the processor has the same clock speed, in every day use that 512MB does indeed make the machine quite a bit quicker. We should all be applauding Apple for finally putting 512MB standard in their machines.

That processor clock speed thing ? Apple's limited by the chips they are able to buy in that regard, and the fact that they aren't able to bump up the speeds speaks volumes as to why they're switching to Intel. Until the switch- which will likely happen first in the machines that were updated today - only folks who want OS X and iBook or Mac mini form factors will buy these machines. Not that they're too slow to be useful; they're extremely practical computers. You just wouldn't play Doom3 on them...

Re:Apple mini? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166498)

Previously, the Mac mini didn't have Superdrive at all, as far as I know.

I'm kinda pissed off. I just bought a Mac mini two weeks ago, got the RAM upgrade and everything.

Re:Apple mini? (2, Insightful)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | about 9 years ago | (#13166690)

``The iBook and Mac mini were the ones updated, and it's not so much a new Mac mini as a revision of the line. They're no quicker''

Don't discount the speed boost that the memory upgrade from 256 to 512 MB gives. OS X is quite memory intensive, and this upgrade would probably make the difference between needing to swap and not needing to swap for many people. That obviously has a huge impact on how fast the system feels.

This is a very good update. (1)

iwadasn (742362) | about 9 years ago | (#13166285)


Bluetooth and Airport become standard. 14" model gets a superdrive, both models get more RAM.

It's a substantial improvement all around.

512 MB of RAM is more than anyone will use (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 9 years ago | (#13166326)

or something like that [grin] ...

But seriously, looks like a nice upgrade, although one wonders how long the lifespan will be, due to the chip switch to Intel/AMD.

Core Image/Core Video (0, Redundant)

I_can_not_believe_I_ (889846) | about 9 years ago | (#13166297)


Strangely with the update, it doesn't look like either line can take advantage of the Core Image/Core Video functions of Tiger, at least I don't see the video cards listed on Tiger's CI/CV compatibility list.

32Megs Video RAM? 1024 Res? (1)

bad_outlook (868902) | about 9 years ago | (#13166303)

I still do not understand the lack of more video RAM - this sucks because you can't take advantage of the 'Quartz Extreme', which whil it is some annyoning marketing, is *much* more reponsive on a PowerMac. That, plus the lack of screen Res of 1280x keeps me with my 2 year old 12.1" iBook - until I find a Thinkpad to run Linux.

Re:32Megs Video RAM? 1024 Res? (4, Informative)

oberondarksoul (723118) | about 9 years ago | (#13166356)

Quartz Extreme will work on these iBooks. That needs a 16Mb or greater AGP graphics adaptor, which the iBooks and Mac minis have. You're thinking of Core Image/Core Video.

Updates.. (1)

s000t (894190) | about 9 years ago | (#13166309)

I just love how apple is coming out with updated computers while microsoft works to restrict updates (as they should). What's up with all the updates and restricitons, I think people want something a little more revolutionary and a little less restrictionary!

Why widescreen in a laptop? (2, Interesting)

Realistic_Dragon (655151) | about 9 years ago | (#13166312)

My 14" NEC laptop had a conventional format an in an economy seat it couldnt be opened up because the top banged against the seat in front and if the guy pushed his seat back too fast... crunch, end of laptop hinge.

My 15" powerbook on the other hand fits with an inch to spare, which is much more convenient. At least for us young guys who get screwed when the company does it's travel budget allocation for the year.

School season (2, Interesting)

michokest (893732) | about 9 years ago | (#13166328)


This is clearly targeted for the students buying new computers in August and September.
It's all about dumping the last G4/G5 and gaining market share.

I bet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166351)

That's my prediction

How about a link to the actual article? (1)

R.Mo_Robert (737913) | about 9 years ago | (#13166366)

http://www.thinksecret.com/news/0507ibookmacmini.h tml [thinksecret.com] (not that you need a ThinkSecret article to tell you that there actually are updates...)

Also, the /. article summary fails to mention some important details--for example, there are now only two iBooks: 1.33GHz/Combo/30GB and 1.42GHz/Super/60GB. Additionally, there are now three Mac Minis with the same specs except 512 MB RAM standard, and AirPort+Bluetooth included on all but the $499 low-end model. Additionally, the 56k modem is actually not included on the two upper models unless you ask for it (add $29)! The ability to add a SuperDrive to a ComboDrive-standard model is also gone, but the new higher-end model helps; BetaNews reports this configuration, $699, would have cost $800 before.

Too bad I just bought an iMac. :)

1024x768 screens (4, Informative)

Heian-794 (834234) | about 9 years ago | (#13166372)

The 1024x768 screens, while certainly nothing to look down on, really need to be upgraded. Is it 96 pixels per inch now? Would increasing that be too expensive? (Not rhetorical; I'd like to know.)

Microsoft's font smoothing works only in the horizontal dimension and makes even small text look smooth and pleasing to the eye. Apple, on the other hand, tries to smooth things both vertically and horizontally. This looks fantastic at really big sizes, but at a normal size such as 12 point, horizontal bars (such as in "H" and "E" become gray and cause eyestrain.

I love Macs and hate to see Gates trumping them in something. But a higher-resolution, or better-smoothed, portable (iBook/PowerBook)screen would do wonders for readability.

Re:1024x768 screens (2, Interesting)

bladx (816461) | about 9 years ago | (#13166540)

I agree. Especially for reading Japanese, it is hard for me to use my iBook because it is smoothed too much (and even when I use Tinkertool, it just makes it so hard to read as well.) I wish this is something that would be seriously changed for Mac screens.

Pathetic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166392)

Underwhelming.

No update on the graphics card. No extra VRAM.
No FW800. No decent HTPC output.

Video card still underwhelming (2, Insightful)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | about 9 years ago | (#13166394)

I don't know what it is with Apple and the VRAM. Every machine ships with about half of what you need to get any decent performance out of it. You're not going to be able to play many current games on them, much less any coming out in the next year. That has to be a disappointing experience to many people who are switching. When I ordered my 15" PowerBook earlier this year, I had to spend $300 just to upgrade it to the 128 MB video card. I really wish the VRAM was seperate a BTO option.

Re:Video card still underwhelming (1)

MasterVidBoi (267096) | about 9 years ago | (#13166584)

I'm sorry, but you can't expect a $499 computer to include a 6800U. A Radeon 9200/32MB is competive even with Dell. Comparing against a $550 dell: http://configure.us.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx ?c=us&cs=19&l=en&oc=D30CVB2&s=dhs [dell.com]

The dell only includes an Intel Integrated Extreme Graphics 2, with no dedicated VRAM. When it comes to graphics performance, there is no comparison (admittedly, the dell does include a 15" analong flat panel).

Re:Video card still underwhelming (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166594)

So true !

What are they thinking? (1)

Alkonaut (604183) | about 9 years ago | (#13166428)

After a wait this long (9 months?), and with the upcoming switch to intel, Apple really needed to make the iBook look like it is going to last 5 years if ordered today.

That resolution of 1024x768 (which was cool in 1997), and the non-CoreImage graphics card makes the thing look old at the day of introduction!

Did they not notice how other premium laptops (like sony and ibm) suddenly offer twice the punch at the same price? OS X alone will not sell iBooks, especially with some features not available at all.

Re:What are they thinking? (1)

isotpist (857411) | about 9 years ago | (#13166574)

I bought an ibook 4 years ago, when this general form factor first came out. It is still an amazing machine, yeah the other computers I use are faster, so the old one gets relegated, but it does most things pretty well in panther.

Re:What are they thinking? (1)

Alkonaut (604183) | about 9 years ago | (#13166648)

Yes, the machine was indeed amazing four years ago. But today 1024x768 (especially when blown out over 14 inches) is not all that amazing anymore.

Somehow it feels crippled just to place it below the powerbook. That kind of product segmentation usually doesn't work well in tight competition.

Obligatory rant... (2, Funny)

Joey Patterson (547891) | about 9 years ago | (#13166459)


"But I just bought an iBook two months ago! This just isn't fair!"

Re:Obligatory rant... (1)

bhima (46039) | about 9 years ago | (#13166591)

Oh for fucks sake! Macrumors has been warning you not to for longer than that!

I almost didn't read this article (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166468)


Because my ad-blocker filtered it. It filters about 50% of slashdot these days.

Same processors, but... (1)

ChrisF79 (829953) | about 9 years ago | (#13166481)

Even though the processors are unchanged (I think), I would have liked to have seen an upgrade on the hard drive RPM's. They're a sweet little system and that would have been a great addition.

The thing is though, I can't see how people would buy one now with this pending switch to Intel. I was going to buy a mini for my parents about a week before the switch and there weren't any in stock. Now with the news of the intel switch, I can't bring myself to get one. It will be very interesting to see what happens as the date draws nearer to the release of the intel mini's, since we could probably suspect a big sell off of PowerPC models. Just my $0.02.

Re:Same processors, but... (1)

isotpist (857411) | about 9 years ago | (#13166625)

You must be new to macs. Prices will go up on old hardware as people who need to use old software get nervous. There is really no reason not to buy now, the intel switch will be at least six months from now, and will go one model at a time for at least a year. The mac fanatics will claim that old hardware is better, r the new one doesn't work with some obscure piece of software that is mission critical.

Go check the prices on some used G4 cubes o the last G4 Dual processor towers that could boot into OS9.

Bummer (5, Funny)

Dark Paladin (116525) | about 9 years ago | (#13166507)

[sarcasm]
Too bad they're going out of business any day now [macobserver.com] ....
[/sarcasm]

True story:

"You know that Apple's going to be bought out by Microsoft eventually," my father told me.

I raised an eyebrow. "Oh? How do you figure that?"

"Well, they've only got 3% of the market, and now they've got a problem with iPod inventories building up. People just aren't buying enough iPods."

"Oh. Well, I know I'm getting Emily a 512 MB iPod Shuffle for Christmas, since she's started listening to her own music."

"I have one of those." He pulled into the parking lot at Best Buy. The task was to find a set of 801.11g XR transmitters. It seems that my sister was sucking down all of the bandwidth in the house with her stuff, so he wanted to keep her on the g (54 Mbps) while he coasted at g XR (108 Mbps), so he'd have priority on the downloads.

"Yeah, I remember." My father had received a free 512 MB iPod Shuffle for appearing at a CIO convention or something like that.

"I really like it, but I had to upgrade to the 1 GB Shuffle for more space."

I looked down at the dashboard, where his 60 GB iPod Photo sat in its iPod charger/radio transmitter. "This one's to hold more of my music," he said, changing the tracks from country to blues.

We went into Best Buy. It turned out they didn't have the router, but they did have iPods, of which he bought a 30 GB iPod Photo for my sister. "I got Deby one, and once I had Dejah use iTunes she bought some music, but it doesn't work on her Rio, so I had to get her one. I got Amber a Shuffle too not to long ago." Amber was my niece, his granddaughter.

Once we were home, he went into the back room for a bit and came out with his old iPod shuffle in a purple protector case. "Here - this is for Emily. I don't need it any more."

Emily, of course, was so excited and gave her Grandpa all the thanks in the world. Along with the shuffle came another two protector cases, a set of iPod socks made by Apple, then the dock adapter we had to get so it could be charged away from a computer.

"Gee, too bad that Apple's going out of business because they're not selling enough iPods," I mused.

"Well, Microsoft will just buy them out." Dad started inserted CD's into his laptop, ripping his entire collection to his hard drive to take with him on his portable music player. "Want to help your sister figure out her playlists in iTunes?"

"Ah - sure."

And that is how Emily got an iPod. And I learned that Apple may go out of business in the next bit - but odds are, my family alone will keep them floating for quite some time.

Re:Bummer (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166630)

Your writing style is really gay. This isn't a slashdot narrative-short fiction-anectodal creative writing workshop, or some other clove-smoking hippie bullshit, this is a techie forum so please stop writing like a faggot, thanks.

PS Do you realize that your dad like to rub Emily's little nipples while she is asleep? It's true.

I finally figured out what market the Mini is for. (4, Insightful)

bennomatic (691188) | about 9 years ago | (#13166510)

It's not just for the entry-level market, and it's not just for switchers.

One of the great things about Macs is that they hold their value so well, historically. They just keep on performing as the years go by. I've sold three Macs (Quadra 650, PPC 7500 and B/W G3 (Yosemite)), all when they were about three years old, all for $500-$600, or about 1/3 of the price I paid for them, making it easier to move up to the new models.

I'm thinking about moving from my G4/867 to a G5 (not sure I want to wait until the MacTel boxen come out), and I was thinking about the sales prospects when I realized that nobody in their right mind would spend $600.00 on a 3-year old G4 when they could have a mini which is almost twice as fast for the same cost.

So they've really changed the whole profile of the Mac economy, if there is such a thing. If it's harder to sell them, will it make a big difference to those thinking about buying them? I know it does to me. I wonder if the advantages associated with getting into that market for Apple outweigh the disadvantages of the "upsell" market for people like me, who are interested in hopping to near the top of the scale every 3 or so years.

The Mini has had little effect on used Mac sales (1)

argent (18001) | about 9 years ago | (#13166658)

I had expected to see G4s going for under $500 very soon after the Mac mini came out, but it didn't happen. The price of G4s stayed steady, dropping no faster than they had been, until the Intel announcement.

Then they dropped like a bomb. I've been offered a dual G4/550 for $350, or a stripped G4/400 for $150. I wish the Mini had had that effect, because I was trying to get a cheap G4 a couple of months back and finally went for the Mini instead.

But your G4/867 (MDD, I assume)? It's got a faster hard drive than the Mini, it supports twice the RAM, it supports Core Graphics in the GPU with a Radeon 9600 or better video card. You can upgrade it (thanks to Sonnet and their pals) all the way to a dual 2 GHz G4. Depending on how you have it actually loaded, it could be quite comparable to a $600 Mini.

But not until the aftershocks of the Intel bomb settle down, I suspect.

Missing even more... (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | about 9 years ago | (#13166547)

from the iBook update was the long-rumored move to a widescreen model which unconfirmed reports had suggested might arrive with the revision.

Missing even more is a G5 processor. Yeah I know Power Book is their expensive -- excuse me, high performance -- line, but iBook is what's coming out now, not Power Books.

Would anyone have been willing to pay more for a lowest speed, low power G5 iBook, or is keeping iBook prices as low as possible paramount instead?

Re:Missing even more... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166590)

There is no mobile G5 implementation. In fact, Jobs claimed this was a major factor in moving to x86. Where have you been? lol

Radeon 9550 vs. 9200 (2, Interesting)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | about 9 years ago | (#13166566)

So the Mini has a Radeon 9200, whereas the iBook has a 9550? Does that mean the iBook has a better video card? I'd look it up, but video cards are such a jungle I figured it's easier to just ask.

Re:Radeon 9550 vs. 9200 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166701)

Yup.

Next Apple 'laptop' revision will be revolutionary (1)

Wonderkid (541329) | about 9 years ago | (#13166573)

I predict. The reason Apple didn't launch wide screen iBooks is because it would have been wasted investment. Power users who watch DVDs (in aircraft etc) use Powerbooks, not iBooks. And parents probably want their kids to use their iBooks to study, not be entertained. Anyway, if Sony can produce such amazingly compact yet feature laden portables as their current mini-laptop range, am sure Apple's next portable will be an ultra thin (Intel inside?) tablet with a very cleverly designed swivel touch screen and inkwell technologies. This will make it possible to use the machine in just about any configuration. PDA, office machine, artist's easel, data capture etc. Either way, I want an Apple PowerPad!

Quality of the news (0, Offtopic)

Donky_arse (902781) | about 9 years ago | (#13166583)

Slashdot news has taken a huge dip in quality recently. At this point I have decided I am going to start giving my girl these magical pills. [medchoicelabs.com] that turns her on rather then read this crap anymore.

512 MB standard!! Finally! (1)

javaxman (705658) | about 9 years ago | (#13166589)

The really big news is that Apple now offers 512 MB of memory *standard*, across ( very nearly ) their entire line of computers. There is only one configuration I could find that by default ships with less- the eMac Combo Drive [apple.com] , which I guess is OK, you know you're going the cheap all-in-one route there. Even that machine should really get 512MB, though- there is a noticable difference in real-world use between OS X running 256MB and 512MB.

The other thing I noticed is that clock speeds seem pretty much the same, which makes me think : hey, aren't these the same class of machines that are supposed to be switched to Intel first ? Need anyone wonder why ?

Hard to believe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13166599)

Apple's HQ are in California when you read that on their site:
"Surf the Web, chat with friends, do homework, play games, even burn DVDs and CDs to create your own video or musical masterpiece. In your favorite café. At 2 a.m."

So, yes, create your masterpiece in a café at 2 a.m. but please do it quickly because they are closing now.
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