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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Downsizing: 15"->12" Impressions?

Downsizing: 15"->12" Impressions?
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nayr x
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Jul 11, 2003, 02:37 PM
 
I was wondering if those of you that have gone from a 15" Ti to a 12" Al can really bare to go from having one of the largest-screened laptops on the market, too... not...? I have an old Ti500, with the older display, But for the kind of work I do I cant imagine loosing 3 inches of monitor and feeling like I switched to a *better* machine. Are any of you 'downsizers' in a very graphics/video intensive field? If so, do you feel the 12" portable cuts it? i'm just curious... I would love the added tote-a-bility of a smaller comp, But dont think I could ever go backwards down the ladder in screen size.

(Perpetuating detached, existentialist ennui since 2001)
     
Dell Switcher
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Jul 11, 2003, 04:33 PM
 
Originally posted by NAYR X:
I was wondering if those of you that have gone from a 15" Ti to a 12" Al can really bare to go from having one of the largest-screened laptops on the market, too... not...?
I am in the market for PB and have compared carefully the 12 and 15. Two things I noted of importance was that the 12 ran hotter (especially left front corner...probably battery) and the 12 did not have DVI connection.
     
schmoe
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Jul 11, 2003, 05:02 PM
 
The 12" also doesn't have (in relative order of importance): L3 cache, a good video card, PCMCIA and gigabit ethernet. I can't imagine anyone with a 15" faster than 667ghz would enjoy moving to a 12". The 12" seems more like an option if you also have a PowerMac at home, and for that I'd probably get a 900mhz iBook instead.
     
webb3201
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Jul 12, 2003, 07:35 AM
 
I just moved from a 667 (DVI) to a 12 this week. I travel and the durability and portability made this machine a better choice. My 667 was great, but it was a bit ungainly for travel and airports. Most of my computing occurs in horrible posture on my couch and the small size is good for that as well.
Read my MacWebb column and other great Mac articles at Lowendmac.com

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n_lim
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Jul 12, 2003, 11:13 AM
 
I did the switch from a 15" Rev. B 667 Ti to a 12" and am very happy however, I hardly use the Pb for graphics apps anymore after also getting a desktop. I think the 15", while having slightly greater pixel amount, made me feel more comfortable with the palettes in Photoshop, etc, although realistically, since you are coming from a Ti 500, you are not going to be losing much in real estate, just in size. The 12" is a full featured notebook and will be faster than your 500 for all things. I found that the gain in portability far offset the screen size, which only took me a week to get used to.
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MrK
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Jul 12, 2003, 02:51 PM
 
800 Mhz Ti to 12" and I do not regret it at all. Frequently run Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Illustrator, etc. I do not do any video work. Aside from having to do a little more scrolling and a little more zoom in and out in Photoshop to check details, I do not find the smaller screen diminishes my workflow.

The only portable computer you use is the one you have with you. I find the added extra minutes of the little screen more than covered by how often I have the computer with me and can get something done immediately instead of waiting for later. You can't bank free time, you know.

With the RAM maxed to 640 (you can go to a gig these days) I have found this guy to be almost as fast except for INTENSE Photoshop filters. I strongly recommend for both size and weight and durability, which was a concern with my Ti.

HOWEVER - If Apple announces a 15" Al PB in the next few weeks, which is a strong possibility, I would probably go for that instead. It would probably be speed bumped and possibly lighter.

All things considered, though, I LOVE my 12" and do not regret a thing.
     
urrl5201
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Jul 12, 2003, 04:05 PM
 
I considered the 12" way back in April. I found very minor screen flicker in DVD movies, which my old 667 DVI did not do. Some owners of the 12" insisted they saw no flicker. I went to a different store and saw the same anomaly on another 12". It might probably be un-noticible if you have never owned a Ti before. Even the 500 Mhz, aside from an occasional stutter or two per movie, gave smooth video. But this was not obvious stutter, but rather an occasional faint stobing effect hard to describe but for me just too distracting. I'm sorry guys, I am really sorry but I saw what I saw and opted for the 17", and since I never fly anyway it proved for me the best solution. I just feel obligated as an honorary Macnn member to advise you to check this version out very closely or consider waiting for the next revision. If it was not for my lack of faith in the 12" GPU I would certainly have one now. I have been flamed before on different occasions but what the hey, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I have just given mine.
     
superlarry
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Jul 13, 2003, 02:12 AM
 
Originally posted by urrl5201:
I considered the 12" way back in April. I found very minor screen flicker in DVD movies, which my old 667 DVI did not do. Some owners of the 12" insisted they saw no flicker.
not all 12" displayed this behavior. mine did. but apple fixed it in a software update (one of the 10.2.x updates, i believe).
     
Mastrap
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Jul 13, 2003, 03:25 AM
 
Originally posted by schmoe:
The 12" also doesn't have (in relative order of importance): L3 cache, a good video card,
The video card in the 12" is just fine. I have no idea what you mean by "good" but it does the job and does it well.

I considered the 15" or even 17" myself but as MrK said above: ' The only portable computer you use is the one you have with you.'

Instead I got myself an external Sony LCD monitor for my home office with eliminates any screen estate problems.
     
AssassyN
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Jul 13, 2003, 11:00 AM
 
I took an even bigger fall: I went from the 17" PB to the 12" PB, and I haven't had a single regret. For typical work and play, the 12" screen is plenty large for me. For someone dealing with massive Photoshop images or video scenes, it's too small, but then again, it's not powerful enough for those people in the first place.

For the average Joe doing typical web surfing, Word processing, email, etc., the 12" screen dazzles...I couldn't be happier with the 12" PB and it's mobility.
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justinf77
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Jul 13, 2003, 12:29 PM
 
And this makes my decision even HARDER. I was thinking about selling my 15" TiGhz SD for a 12" with maxed out RAM and SD. I love the 15", but would like the included bluetooth in the computer as well as a smaller form factor. I use Photoshop occasionally, but not often, and want to do some DVD copying to take my collection with me to school. Will the 12" be able to handle such tasks? I do love this TiBook though... Would you opt for a Bluetooth adapter for the TiBook, or a switch to the 12"?
     
zacharie
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Jul 13, 2003, 01:50 PM
 
I think you should keep your TiBook if you enjoy its company. It is a great portable machine, really powerful compared to the 12" and it doesn't really lack bluetooth integration if you occasionally need to sync you cellphone with address book, ical...
I left my 800mhz Tibook for a 12" maxed-out ram. I was personally disappointed with the small screen and went back to a Tibook, 1ghz. I now understand why the Tibook experience is truly enjoyable, in my point of view...
     
nayr x  (op)
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Jul 13, 2003, 07:44 PM
 
To be perfectly honest, I will probably not buy a new book until apple releases something that strikes me just right. (i.e. a new 15 with up-to-date features). I am writig this post from my sister's 12er, and while I think It is an absolutly wonderful machine, I dont think it would work for me, sadly. The thing this things does have is amazing portability, while I have never complainded about the bulk of my Ti you never realize how portable portable can get until you use one of these lil baby's. I wish there were a way for me to justify having a little runabout and a big honker for business... that would be ideal. However the limitations of the monitor size would hinder the luxury I currently have of being able to use my laptop to display fullscreen to a roomfull of clientell when it is not possible to hook up to a larger display or TV. Luckly we are of the mac persuasion, and most of our individual needs will be catered too (eventually). My guess would be that the new 15inchers will quell this heated debate almost completly as we will have an added choice between Small, Outdated, and Large. Personally I can't wait to see what's coming. (Now another question:How long until this message board is ablaze with talk of which G5 to wait for? The holo-12inch or the Fractile-Projection 27"...)

(Perpetuating detached, existentialist ennui since 2001)
     
justinf77
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Jul 13, 2003, 11:23 PM
 
Originally posted by NAYR X:
However the limitations of the monitor size would hinder the luxury I currently have of being able to use my laptop to display fullscreen to a roomfull of clientell when it is not possible to hook up to a larger display or TV.
The 12" PowerBook can be hooked up to a larger display or TV via SVideo or VGA.
     
nayr x  (op)
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Jul 14, 2003, 12:42 PM
 
To quote myself: "When it is NOT POSSIBLE to hook up to a larger TV or display." (i.e. there is no external monitors or TVs present at the location) A few weeks back I was on a job and my outfit was able to go down inside an underground water culvert that was damaged under I-70, Eisenhower Tunnel in Colorado. My miniDV camera recorded 0Lux images of a cave in in the pipe, which I later presented to a roomfull of the top CDOT engineers in the state, so they could figure out what they were going to do about the problem (since the Vail I-70 sink hole was declared a state emergency, and this was a possibilty at eisenhower too.) I got mad props for being able to offer a solution like that in a pinch. I think the 12" would have short comings in a siuation like that: )
( Last edited by nayr x; Jul 14, 2003 at 12:50 PM. )

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Emeril
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Jul 14, 2003, 12:56 PM
 
Couldn't agree more. I sold my TiBook 800Mhz & bought a 12" iBook (latest & greatest). While the speed didn't really bother me, the 12" screen sure did. It was simply too small for me.

A few days ago I got rid of it & bought a new 867Mhz TiBook, so I feel like i'm back home again :-) The 15" widescreen is great to look at.



Originally posted by zacharie:
I think you should keep your TiBook if you enjoy its company. It is a great portable machine, really powerful compared to the 12" and it doesn't really lack bluetooth integration if you occasionally need to sync you cellphone with address book, ical...
I left my 800mhz Tibook for a 12" maxed-out ram. I was personally disappointed with the small screen and went back to a Tibook, 1ghz. I now understand why the Tibook experience is truly enjoyable, in my point of view...
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macxtal
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Jul 14, 2003, 02:43 PM
 
12" is fine if you have an external monitor to work from. Unfortunately, apple didn't include DVI connectors - maybe next time - so the 12" IMHO is not a real replacement for the 15". I'd buy a 12" with DVI immediately; No cinema display, no notebook for me.
     
BkueKanoodle
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Jul 14, 2003, 09:57 PM
 
Screen size is very subjective.

About 2 weeks ago, I sold my 15 inch 1 ghz tibook and got myself a 12 inch 800 mz ibook, & an Acer centrino covertible tablet pc. (I know, its windows, but I love gadgets )

The ibook shipped first and I had a real hard time getting used to it after the powerbook. I began to regret selling my powerbook, but only because I hadn't given the ibook enough time. In any case, then my acer came in. For those who haven't seen one, it hasa 10.4 inch screen. I definitely thought I never be able to use asuch a small screen, so I went out and bought a 19 LCD to use at my desk.

That worked well for the first week, but I realized today that I spendmost my time using just the built in 10.4 inch screen. And you know what? It feels much bigger then it really is. Now when I fire up my ibook, that feels like a full size laptop! And when I fire up my older Windows XP 15 inch laptop, the screen seems gargantuan!

Off topic-
Having jumped back and forth between windows and Macs for the last 20 years, I can say there are alot of things I wish the windows world would bring ove from the Mac side, like fast wake and intelligent monitor arranging, but then again, I wish that apple would bring some stuff over from the PC side, like speed (No I don't want to hear about the 970, if it ain't shipping now, it doesn't count. ) Of course when they do ship the 970 I will be in the line to buy first. Each system has its pros and cons, but it was odd after using OS X for the last 6 months straight to go back to XP.

Not bad, just different.
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