November 14, 2005
New Powerbook

Last week the display on my 3.5-year-old 15" titanium Powerbook fritzed out, so I got a new 15" aluminum Powerbook— basically the same one John Gruber recently reviewed. I agree with pretty much everything he said.

The good: 1. The CPU is twice as fast as my old machine, which is nice, but I think the biggest speedup comes from the 7200 RPM Seagate hard drive. It's about 3x as fast as my old 5400 drive, and much quieter. 2. Going to 1.5 GB of RAM actually made a big difference over the 1 GB I had in the old machine. 3. The incrementally higher resolution is incrementally nicer (and the people complaining on Macintouch and returning their laptops because of “horizontal lines” in the display are kooks). 4. The backlit keyboard really is useful. 5. It does feel sturdier than the Ti book. 6. OS X's Setup Assistant completely cloned my old powerbook; all I had to do was reinstall Xcode.

The bad: 1. Twice I've had to reboot because the mouse got jumpy and the kernel_task process went a little out of control. It looks like this is a driver issue with the new touchpad hardware, and I hope it's resolved in an OS update.

Posted by jjwiseman at November 14, 2005 01:03 PM

did you install the last airport update? that solved the kernel_task/airport/mouse problems for me.

Posted by: bryan_oc on November 14, 2005 01:26 PM

I just installed it this morning, hoping it would make a difference.

Posted by: John Wiseman on November 14, 2005 01:34 PM

I have had persistant "jumpy mouse" problems on my 20" iMac. It will suddenly jump across the screen (usually into a corner where expose gets all excited). Updates haven't fixed the problem. Is your mouse problem similar to this?

Posted by: thom on November 14, 2005 04:18 PM

Oooh, cool. Jen recently got one herself. I'm totally torn. Powerbook or iMac?

She doesn't like the trackpad as much as her old tibook. What do you think?

Posted by: Michael Hannemann on November 14, 2005 04:56 PM

I just received my new powerbook 17inch, and after reading your post about Setup Assistant I used it to clone my previous 15inch with success.

I'm really, really, really impressed with the Setup Assistant.
I buy a new powerbook, and only have 2 hours downtime switching from old to new without manual intervention. As a self-employed professional, this is not to be taken lightly.

I only had to manually copy my /usr/local dir from my old powerbook. My fink /sw dir was copied nicely.
Setup Assistant even cloned the drivers for other peripherals (external soundcard, wacom tablet, ...).

Don't ya'll love powerbooks/mac os x?

Posted by: Nicky Peeters on November 15, 2005 12:18 PM

bryan_oc: seems that the airport software update fixed my problems. awesome.

Posted by: John Wiseman on November 18, 2005 01:13 PM
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