PowerBooks Hit 667 MHz, Gets Faster System Bus, New Video Card, Gigabit Ethernet

Apple has released a revision of the Titanium PowerBook G4 that is likely to turn some heads in the computing industry. The company has re-configured the line into two models, a 550 MHz unit and a 667 MHz unit, and the pricing has been lowered on the high end to US$2999. The high end model features a new 133 MHz system bus, and both models feature larger hard drives and a new CD-RW build-to-order option; there is still no combo-drive option for the portables. Apple has also included Gigabit Ethernet across the line, and the 667 MHz unit now includes a built-in AirPort card as a standard option. On the video side, Apple has changed the video card to ATIis Radeon AGP 4x mobility card. The company is also offering a free double-your-RAM promo offer. From Apple:

Apple® today introduced its new line of Titanium PowerBook® G4 notebooks with faster processors, high speed graphics and larger hard drives. The new PowerBook G4 line offers a significant performance boost with new PowerPC G4 processors up to 667 MHz, a new system bus running up to 133 MHz, speedy new ATI Mobility Radeon AGP 4X graphics and built-in Gibabit Ethernet networking - the first time ever in a portable.

Creative professionals will benefit from the new larger hard drives up to 48GB and the new optional CD-RW slot-loading optical drives. The new PowerBook G4s now include both the new Mac® OS X version 10.1 and Mac OS 9.2.1 pre-installed.

The super-light, yet incredibly powerful new Titanium PowerBook G4 features:

  • 1-inch thick Titanium metal body weighing just 5.3 pounds*;
  • a stunning 15.2 inch (diagonal) TFT wide-screen active-matrix display;
  • new 550 MHz or 667 MHz PowerPC G4 processors with Velocity Engine™ and 256K of on-chip level 2 cache, running at full processor speed;
  • new 133 MHz system bus in 667 MHz model and 100 MHz system bus in 550 MHz model;
  • 128MB or 256MB SDRAM, expandable to 1GB;
  • slot-loading DVD-ROM drive or new slot-loading CD-RW drive option;
  • new ATI Mobility Radeon graphics with AGP 4X and 16MB DDR video memory;
  • new built-in 10/100/1000BASE-T Ethernet;
  • new 20GB or 30GB Ultra ATA/66 hard drives standard, with drives up to 48GB optional;
  • up to 5 hours of battery life on one Lithium-ion battery;
  • AirPort® card now pre-installed on 667 MHz model, with antennas and slot for wireless networking on all models;
  • USB, FireWire®, VGA and S-video output;
  • new Mac OS X version 10.1, Appleis next-generation operating system installed, as well as Classic Mac OS 9.2.1; and
  • a new small, lightweight power adapter.

Offering blazing performance, the new 550 MHz Titanium PowerBook G4 offers a 100 MHz system bus, while the 667 MHz model features a 133 MHz system bus. Tapping into that power, the new Titanium PowerBook G4 outperforms Pentium III-based 1.13GHz notebook systems on average by 48 percent*. Both models provide advanced graphics and fast 3D rendering with the ATI Mobility Radeon graphics processor with AGP 4X support and 16MB of fast DDR video memory.

The new Titanium PowerBook G4 continues to set the standard for mobile communications with both built-in Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000BASE-T) and 802.11-based AirPort technology for 11 megabit per second wireless communications. The new 667 MHz PowerBook G4 comes standard with both Gigabit Ethernet and AirPort wireless networking pre-installed. The new 550 MHz PowerBook G4 also includes Gigabit Ethernet and the ability to add AirPort wireless networking as an option.

PowerBook G4 customers can now choose to configure their system with a CD-RW drive to manage their digital music collection on the go using Appleis pre-installed iTunes™ software, the worldis best and easiest-to-use “jukebox” software, and also burn customized music CDs or create data CDs for file sharing and backup with Appleis Disc Burner software. With Appleis iMovie™ 2, the worldis most popular, easy-to-use consumer digital video editing software which comes pre-installed, or Appleis award-winning Final Cut Pro® professional video editing, effects and compositing software, the PowerBook G4 is the ultimate system for portable video editing.

Pricing & Availability
The new PowerBook G4 line is available immediately through The Apple Store, at Appleis retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers in two standard configurations.

The 550 MHz PowerBook G4, for a suggested retail price of $2,199 (US), includes:

  • 128MB SDRAM, expandable to 1GB;
  • a 20GB Ultra ATA/66 hard drive; and
  • AirPort ready with integrated antennas and card slot.

The 667 MHz PowerBook G4, for a suggested retail price of $2,999 (US), includes:

  • 256MB SDRAM, expandable to 1GB;
  • a 30GB Ultra ATA/66 hard drive; and
  • AirPort enabled with integrated antennas and pre-installed AirPort Card.

For a limited time, the two new standard Titanium PowerBook G4 configurations will ship with double the amount of RAM at no additional cost to the customer. For more information on Appleis Double for Nothing RAM promotion, please go to www.apple.com/promo/.

Additional build-to-order options for the new PowerBook G4 include: a CD-RW optical drive, 48GB hard drive; up to 1GB of SDRAM; the AirPort Base Station and AirPort Card; and the AppleCare Protection Plan.

* Weight includes battery and DVD drive, and varies by configuration and manufacturing process.
** Based on 9 commonly used actions in Adobe Photoshop 6.0.

You can find the specs for the new units at Appleis PowerBook Spec page.