Author Topic: Recommendations for used PB purchase?  (Read 2199 times)

Offline krissel

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« on: January 30, 2004, 11:39:08 PM »
My Mom is going crazy being forced to stay off her feet for long periods of time so I mentioned the possibility of staying mentally active with a laptop.

She would need a larger screen than the 12 inchers and since it would be mainly surfing and email she doesn't need state of the art. Since she is presently awaiting rotator cuff surgery (both arms) and has arthritis in her hands, an easy to use keyboard is a must. My Wallstreet has a soft touch keyboard which is really a pleasure to use. Speakable items would be even better of course, if that really does work?

I've found a couple of refurbished Lombards from resellers online for around $400 with 30-90 day warranty. Does this sound like a reasonable purchase? (I'm leery of dealing with eBay sellers and she wouldn't go for that either.)

Any major caveats to the Lombard models other than the usual age related problems?
« Last Edit: January 30, 2004, 11:41:18 PM by krissel »


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Offline Paddy

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2004, 10:28:29 AM »
My husband has a 400MHz Lombard and it has served him well for the last 3.5 years. One caveat - if you want to run OS X on it, you may not be able to do so if it was manufactured before September 1999.  (See quoted from MacInTouch below - though the date referenced is for the machines manufactured AFTER Sept 99. I have not been able to confirm whether these problems continued with Lombards and later versions of OS X - though they may not have. I'm not about to try it out on my husband's machine just to find out!) :



QUOTE
Date: Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:01:44 -0400
From: "Rene Borgella Jr."
Subject: Jaguar Install problem on Lombards


I saw Robert Carian's report where he detailed some problems installing 10.2 on a Lombard. As I mentioned in a recent post to you folks, this reminded me of the earlier problem some folks had installing 10.0 on Lombards.

I have a couple of questions that may help determine if Mr. Carian's report is related to the earlier Lombard problems.

1) Was this a OS X virgin powerbook? i.e., was she able to install an earlier version of OS X on this Lombard?

2) Was the memory in this Lombard upgraded prior to the OS X.2 installation or is this stock Apple memory?

3) After installing 10.2 in your sister's Lombard (using the replacement processor), I assume the technician removed the processor and replaced it with her original. If this is the case, does 10.2 still run well? Can you install 10.2 on the Lombard now, with the original processor?

The original Lombard problems manifested themselves for some Lombards manufactured during a few months (?Aug-Dec 1999, see extensive posts in MacFixIt Forums that were posted around the time of OS X 10.0 debut.). The problem was that if there was any RAM _other_ than the original RAM in the bottom slot, then the 10.0 install froze during the install. In my case, 10.0 would ONLY install with the original 64MB RAM chip in the bottom slot. If I had a 128MB chip in the upper slot, the install usually froze, or in some cases, the install completed but the system crashed when restarted. e to the original processor card's inability in dealing with a 2nd RAM chip. By the way, I purchased the Lombard with 64MB of Apple Ram and installed a 128 MB PNY brand chip when I purchased the machine.

Apple's response was that this was "substandard" RAM, and therefore not an Apple problem but a RAM problem. PNY replaced my original chip 3 times and still no 10.0 install. After installing Apple supplied RAM and still not being able to install 10.0, Apple finally relented and repaired my Lombard free of charge. The repair was a processor replacement!

I now have 512 MB in my Lombard and have done OS X 10.0 - 10.2 installs and all have worked flawlessly.

As an aside, I now almost never have crashes in OS 9, whereas before the Apple repair, my Lombard crashed frequently (several times a day!). I always thought that this was just bad software (usually I got crashes when running Word or IE in OS 9, this is in pre-OS X days), and I tried everything from re-installing software, systems, extensions, wiping drives and doing clean installs, etc. Nothing ever seemed to improve the amount of crashing I got until the processor card was replaced. Thus, I am convinced that all of my previous problems with the Lombard being unstable were due to the processor card not being able to deal with a 2nd RAM chip.


More info:

Options compared at LowEnd Mac

http://www.lowendmac.com/pb2/lombard.shtml

If you've found a Lombard for around $400, you're not doing any worse than eBay. Completed auction prices for them (most recent 12 I came across) ranged from a low of $325 to a high of $560, with an average of $423. Specs varied, of course - and as always with eBay, specs and price are not always as closely related as one would expect!

You also might want to have a look at Craigslist.org for NYC area. There seem to be a fair number of powerbooks and iBooks for sale - I saw a 500MHz Pismo for $500:

http://newyork.craigslist.org/mnh/sys/23466372.html

I've bought things off Craigslist (Boston area) twice, and the opportunity to meet the seller and have an opportunity to actually try out the hardware is very reassuring. Plus, I think it was cheaper than eBay! For major CPU purchase and monitors, I usually don't buy until I see & inspect the goods. I have made a few exceptions to this rule - cheap Pentium III PC's, a Wallstreet for my Mom and a Dell laptop for a friend - but without exception, I buy from REPUTABLE eBayer's with LONG eBay records and few, if any complaints. That makes all the difference in the world. You can shop eBay by region - look for things for sale from NY/NJ sellers and before you bid, ask if you can pick up the item  (and pay for it at pick-up). If they don't agree to this, then you don't have to bid. I bought my LaCie 22" this way.
"If computers get too powerful, we can organize them into committees. That'll do them in." ~Author unknown

Offline krissel

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2004, 02:05:01 PM »
Thanks Paddy for all the info. I read through the lowend site for more and found this, which is more encouraging for the Lombard.

I'm typing from my Wallstreet now and am reminded of what a nice feel it has. I guess another one of these would be OK but many have had problems with the hinges and I'd be a bit afraid unless I knew the person had taken really good care of it. I've always babied my PB so it has never had any rough treatment. Plus I've upgraded the processor, hard drive and RAM so it is a much more powerful machine than the original Wallstreets.
I'm running X.2.8 on it now and it does a pretty decent job.

Again thanks.  

Any other comments welcome.

 smile.gif


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Offline kelly

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« Last Edit: January 31, 2004, 04:50:29 PM by kelly »
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Offline krissel

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2004, 07:05:51 PM »
Thanks kelly. Good reading.

I originally thought of the clamshells but they are actually larger in overall size than the Lombard and have a smaller screen. Need a large screen that will support 800x600 for my Mom's vision. And weight matters cause she has trouble grasping heavy objects.

The more I read about the Wallstreets, Lombards and Pismos the more I realize what nice overall machines they are.

 smile.gif

You lovin' your Pismo?   biggrin.gif


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Offline kelly

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2004, 08:45:27 AM »
Yeah. I thought about the Screen Size later.  huh.gif

Yeah. I like the Pismo a lot.

I always heard. Don't "Love" anything that can't love you back. wink.gif
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Offline kelly

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2004, 11:04:19 AM »
Overpriced IMO. But it's at least a reputable merchant.  huh.gif

Looks like a Lombard.

http://www.lowendmac.com/pb2/lombard.shtml

PowerBook G3/333 14.1in for $449

http://dealmac.com/articles/61929.html

http://www.megamacs.com/v1/index.php?cat=1...iew&pid=1605483

http://www.megamacs.com/v1/deal_mac.php

Loaded slow. At least for me.   huh.gif
« Last Edit: February 05, 2004, 11:05:39 AM by kelly »
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Offline acg

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2004, 04:36:25 AM »
As a Wall Street and Pismo owner for quite a while now, I can recommend either with all my heart. Truly great machines... now, you can get them cheap too.

Offline krissel

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2004, 05:07:39 AM »
Thanks guys.  I did see that one at Megamacs. It actually went UP in price from when I first saw it. And unfortunately the Lombard I found for $399 is gone.  sad.gif

Am waiting to hear about a possible more personal deal but if anyone finds a good price please post.  smile.gif

Did run across some info about early Lombards having a problem with bad cache that was apparently fixed in later models. Is there a number anywhere on the outside of the machines that indicates when produced?
« Last Edit: February 06, 2004, 05:12:29 AM by krissel »


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Offline kelly

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2004, 11:13:52 AM »
You keeping track of these? smile.gif

Bargain Books

http://www.lowendmac.com/bookrev/04/0206.html#bb
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Offline jepinto

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2004, 01:52:44 PM »
Microcenter has the 12 in ibook for $799  Was working on a 600 this past week, and was pleasantly surprised by the clarity.
Do not fear your enemies.  The worse they can do is kill you.  Do not fear friends.  At worst, they may betray you.
Fear those who do not care; they neither kill nor betray, but betrayal and murder exist because of their silent consent.
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Offline krissel

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2004, 12:36:27 AM »
Thanks. I've been tracking several sites and watching prices on mac classified boards as well as legit dealers. After reading some horror stories about personal transactions that were scams I would heartily recommend escrow services.

Here's a good read on how to avoid seller's remorse when dealing with online sales:

Fraudulent sales

I'm trying to stay around the $400 (or less) arena for a 14" screen in a late model Wallstreet or Lombard. Pismos for the most part are too expensive. I have seen a few tempting possibilities but need to be completely comfortable with a particular item before commiting myself. Want to have just the right combo of processor, RAM, etc. and condition.
  unsure.gif


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Offline kelly

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2004, 11:45:32 AM »
Powerbook G3/333  128/4GB/24x/14.1 $449.99

http://www.megamacs.com/v1/index.php?cat=1...iew&pid=1605483
« Last Edit: February 25, 2004, 11:46:13 AM by kelly »
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Offline jepinto

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« Reply #13 on: February 29, 2004, 05:15:55 AM »
Macofalltrades has a Wall Stret for $300 or a Lombard for $400  both have a CD, the Wallstreet has a 12 in screen, the Lombard-14 in.

This Lombard is $500 with DVD and Zip.

Each has 256 ram.

If you're still looking.
Do not fear your enemies.  The worse they can do is kill you.  Do not fear friends.  At worst, they may betray you.
Fear those who do not care; they neither kill nor betray, but betrayal and murder exist because of their silent consent.
~Bruno Jasienski~

Offline krissel

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Recommendations for used PB purchase?
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2004, 12:29:09 AM »
Thanks kelly and Jen. I am still looking. Put off making a move since Mom has been in a lot of discomfort lately and our energies have been toward dealing with that.

Still if just the right machine pops up...(that macofalltrades Lombard is tempting)... Thinking.gif

Anyone have an opinion on whether a year's maintenance agreement on that would be a good investment. They offer it for $75-85.  huh.gif


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