Columnist: Titanium PowerBook a 'fashion victim'

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Despite its plethora of awards and mostly widespread critical acclaim, at least one columnist isn't enamored with the Titanium PowerBook G4. Stephen Somogyi, who pens the ZDNet AnchorDesk column, writes that the TiPB is gorgeous but has some major flaws, ones that haven't been fixed in the latest revision of the professional laptop.

Despite Apple's claims, Somogyi says that AirPort performance on his 667MHz evaluation unit is improved by a "relatively small increment at best" and that "a titanium casing does not make for good radio transparency."

"Both the iBook and the PowerBook G3 FireWire wipe the floor with the new Rev. B PowerBook G4 -- just as they did with the Rev. A TiBook -- when it comes to AirPort performance," he says. "This is disappointing, since the PBG4 is the high-end portable machine that really should put Apple's highly touted technologies in the most favorable light."

On a positive note, he said the new TiPB doesn't get quite as warm to the touch. Somogyi also likes the fact that the screen's hinge is stiffer and provides more resistance against the latch, so the screen doesn't pop open by itself as often as in the first TiPB models. And he "loves" the new square power supply. But, overall, the TiPB is a "fashion victim," Somogyi feels.

"At least, that's the only conclusion I can arrive at, after having used both Revs. A and B," he writes. "Rev. B offers many small improvements over the first iteration, but it still doesn't have the right balance of utility and finesse that the iBook does. The larger screen is nice -- though PC laptops have the PBG4 beat on the LCD resolution front -- as is the processor power afforded by the G4. But while the PBG4 has won tons of awards, I can't help feeling that it isn't as great a professional laptop as Apple is capable of producing."

This story, "Columnist: Titanium PowerBook a 'fashion victim'" was originally published by PCWorld.

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