Using a USA bought Apple Powerbook in the UK
January 13, 2005 10:08 AM   Subscribe

Using a US bought Apple Powerbook in the UK (MI+)

I've been offered a Powerbook that was bought (and has been used) in the US. I'm in the UK. Are they any major issues with power source or keyboard layout (or anything else for that matter) that I should be aware of?
posted by cantthinkofone to Computers & Internet (10 answers total)
You'll need some kind of plug adaptor for the US-supplied 2-flat-pin plug. Otherwise the power source is fine as it is designed to run on different power sources from 100-240V.

The keyboard will have a slightly different layout (no Sterling symbol on the Shift-3 [I think it's a #] or Euro symbol on the Shift-Opt-2) but you can set the keyboard layout in the System Preferences on OS X so just remember the change.
posted by i_cola at 10:24 AM on January 13, 2005

didn't apple change to a power supply that doesn't auto-sense/adapt recently?
posted by andrew cooke at 10:47 AM on January 13, 2005

For plug adapters, you will need a "figure of 8" wallsocket cable. Maplin will do you one for three quid here.
posted by danhon at 10:48 AM on January 13, 2005

Why not just buy a UK Powerbook AC adapter? Both the US and UK wall adapters just put out the same 6 or 12V (don't remember which) at the "powerbook end".
posted by mrbill at 10:50 AM on January 13, 2005

As i_cola states, you can use a Powerbook using any voltage between 100 - 240.

If you don't any need for a "travel adapter" transformer (i.e., other foreign appliances), I'd recommend going down to your local Apple dealer and buying a replacement AC adapter with the right plug. Any newer powerbook has swappable prongs which are sold separately.

(on preview, mr. bill beat me to it)
posted by maniactown at 11:03 AM on January 13, 2005

didn't apple change to a power supply that doesn't auto-sense/adapt recently?

As far as I know, only very recently, and only for desktop machines

The US power supplies are fine in the UK, you just remove the two-prong american plug and replace it with any figure-8/kettle-style electrical cable.
posted by ascullion at 1:12 PM on January 13, 2005

Like one of these.
posted by ascullion at 1:14 PM on January 13, 2005

Shift-Option-2 is still € on the U.S. layout.
posted by oaf at 6:25 PM on January 13, 2005

My Mother happily uses the powerbook that I bought for her in the US at home in England.

I got her an adapter for her power supply (the official "Apple World Travel Adapter Kit" with all sorts of plugs for different countries), but a cheap adapter would do just fine, as the power supply itself is multi-voltage, as others have pointed out.

The keyboard will be labeled with a dollar sign rather than a pound sign, but the International pane of System Preferences allows you to choose a British (or Welsh or whatever) keyboard mapping. Same place for changing date formats etc.

Apple warranties are worldwide too, if the computer in question is less than a year old.
posted by Quinbus Flestrin at 9:53 PM on January 13, 2005

thanks, ascullion (we live in a 220v country, but will probably buy a mac from the usa, so this was worrying me).
posted by andrew cooke at 5:30 AM on January 14, 2005

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