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New PowerBook

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by joeyhimself, Dec 7, 2005.

  1. joeyhimself


    Jul 17, 2005
    I'm getting a new PowerBook for Christmas. This is my first Mac and I'm interested in using it for very basic recording, among other things.

    Anyway, my question is about software. I heard that GarageBand comes with new Macs, but I read somewhere that the newest OS X that ships with new Macs does not contain GarageBand. Which of these is true?

    Other than GarageBand, is there any other software I should consider buying when I get the PowerBook? Or should I just wait until it gets here and stop being so antsy...?

    Any links, directions, etc. would be appreciated. Thanks. Joey.
  2. Groundloop


    Jun 21, 2005
    Congratulations on the Powerbook. I envy you Sir.

    According to the Apple site, Garageband 2 is indeed included. My most recent Mac was bought in August and it came w/ Garageband as well, so I think you'll be good to go. Garageband is actually a pretty useful little program so you should have some fun with it. When you want/need to do more advanced recording and sequencing I'd recommend Logic Express.

    You will need to buy an audio interface if you want to do any recording though. There are tons of USB and Firewire options from M-Audio, Digidesign, Edirol, MOTU etc. etc. Good resources for info about all things audio are OSX Audio
    and MacMusic.
  3. Tash


    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    Congrats. I just got a Powerbook, it rules. Loaded with RAM it's a great audio workstation with a lot of power and flexibility.

    Garageband is included with iLife. It should come with any new Mac.
  4. joeyhimself


    Jul 17, 2005
    Thanks for the replies guys. Now if only UPS could ship that fast...
  5. mz91


    Apr 19, 2002
    Zug, Switzerland
    sorry to rain on your parade. But wouldnt it have been smarter to wait on the new intel pb's?
  6. joeyhimself


    Jul 17, 2005
    Smarter? I don't think so... You're welcome to enlighten me though.
  7. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    +1, I'm curious as well.

  8. Prolly could have gotten it cheaper with the Intel chip, but we won't even see them for a little while longer, right?

    Other than that, the IBM chipset in it is a rock. So worry not.

  9. you did the right thing. when you are ready for a computer purchase you need to buy. if you wait you will NEVER buy one because there will ALWAYS be something better, faster, and cheaper right around the corner. congratulations and you will have a blast recording with that thing. and as has been said, you have tons of options on how to get audio into your powerbook.
  10. joeyhimself


    Jul 17, 2005
    I've heard that it'll either be cheaper, more expensive, or about the same. So, I'll take my chances and get one now.
  11. PunkerTrav


    Jul 18, 2001
    Canada & USA

    Hey Tash, how much RAM did you stick in to your PB? I've been looking at a Powerbook lately and it would be nice to be able to use that and my desktop at home to do some recording. I have 1.28 GB at home and have never had any problems whatsoever.

    joeyhimself, congrats on the new purchase!
  12. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    I'm leery of any 1st generation hardware out of anyone, even Apple. I can't wait to get one, but it'll be at least a year or two before I drop the cash. I'm not paying to be Apple's guinea pig. :)

    The current Powerbooks are really nice (I'm typing this on a 15" PB in fact), and even though they aren't 5GHz monsters they have more than enough power for DAW work. Kind of silly to hold back if you ask me.
  13. JansenW


    Nov 14, 2005
    Cambridge, MA
    Apple announced that it will be transitioning it's line of PCs from IBM/Motorola chips to Intel chips. The reason: Pricing, performance and support issues with the current IBM/Motorola PowerPC chips.

    It is expected that Apple will introduce at least a new iBook at SF MacWorld (January 9-13, 2006). Rumors are that this laptop may be their first Intel-based product with more announcements to follow. Expect price drops at this time.


    Professional PCs and PowerBooks will be transitioned at a later time.

    Their current PowerBooks are great laptops but will be "old" in a year or two.
  14. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    Powerbooks are sweet. I have a First rev. Aluminum, which... has been thoroughly abused and overworked, but it still burns.

    As for the impending intel release. The Powerbooks might not be intel'd for many more months. If the thread starter needed the computer now, he needed it now. It's always wise to check the rumor circuit before you get a new apple to make sure the new **** isn't coming like, next week. But in this case, I think he's fine not holding out.

    The intel powerbooks may not even be tremendously faster or 'better' than the current powerbooks, I think a big reason apple wanted intel for the powerbooks specifically is because intel has lower wattage chips that can extend battery life considerably. They have chips that are likely more powerful than the currenet 1.67 g4s, but know one knows exactly what we're in for. Also, the price is definitely up in the air, I too have heard that it could be cheaper, the same, or pricier.

    But. If you are at all worried about your new computer being quickly outdated. Check the rumor circuit for the next month or so, and if it looks like intel powerbooks ARE right around the corner, then you can *easily* sell your PPC powerbook for almost the same price you bought it for, then use that money to buy a new one. The Apple resale market is very good.

    As for software. Apple pretty much includes everything you need. Garageband comes with. There is internet browsing, aim, music management, photo management, video editing, text editing, email....etc...etc...etc.

    Outside of professional apps, apple has you covered. But, you might want to consider the garageband jampacks, they are $79-99 each(depending on where you go) and they really improve GB considerably
  15. joeyhimself


    Jul 17, 2005
    Thanks for the info Wrong Robot. This is my first Mac, and software, obviously, is the biggest reason I've held out this long.
  16. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    Yea, Apple really does a good job giving you practically everything you need right out of the box in terms of software. Then, if there are specific 3rd party suites you need, they are all available, or there are often times free or cheap independent shareware/freeware alternatives.
    www.macupdate.com is a good resource for the latest freeware/shareware/demos and even info about commercial software.
  17. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    +1 on everything WrongRobot said (except that mine isn't 1st gen).
  18. Tash


    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    I have a fully loaded Powerbook: 17 inch, 2GB ram 100GB 7200RPM hard disk. I personally saw no compelling reason to wait between 6 months and a year for an intel chip especially when I considered the following:

    1) There is no firm launch date, or launch specs for Intel based Macs of any kind. They could show up in Jan or they could wind up rolled back till 2007, or anywhere in between. Apple generally keeps these things close to their chest until the last minute, so its pretty ahrd to say just how long you would be without a computer if you decided to wait.

    2) There is no price data. Lots of people are speculating that they will drop in price after the switch. I'm not so sure. And Intel chip Mac is NOT going to be a PC, most of the hardware is still going to be Apple specific, which means smaller production runs and larger prices. I think Intel based Macs will still be slightly more expensive than a simillar spec PC, but of course there is no real info yet.

    3) Switching to a new chip arcitecture is no simple task. There will reliability and performance issues in the initial stages as both Apple and 3rd party vendors work out drivers, patching, emulation for legacy software, etc. I'd rather not be one of the people who helps them find these issues.

    So for right now I am quite happy with my purchase. The Powerbook may be slower than my G5 was, but the lag is in theory only. Nothing I do used that extra power, so it was wasted on me. I do use the extra potability of my powerbook. Aside from being my music creation machine its also my only day to day use workstation. My PC sits in a corner acting as a network file server and occasionally playing Guild Wars.

    I am sure I will be buying an Intel based Mac at some point, I'm quite sold on the conversion now and see very little appealing coming up on the windows side. But I'm not in enough of a rush to give up what I have now.
  19. joeyhimself


    Jul 17, 2005
    One more question... for now. What is the difference between Firewire 400 and 800? Will I still be able to use a Firebox or other Firewire interface with just Firewire 400?
  20. Groundloop


    Jun 21, 2005
    A different connector and, (theoretically) twice the throughput. There are very few Firewire 800 audio interfaces available or in the works right now, and for the vast majority of peoples needs, they aren't necessary. Even if you do get a Firewire 800 device, there are adapters to convert FW800 to FW400 (so the device then operates at FW400 speed). BTW. The Presonus Firebox is FW400.