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View Full Version : How long until our G4s become obsolete?




WillMak
Jan 11, 2006, 10:23 PM
I have the last ibook revision and I'm curious as to how long you guys think the G4 will perform at decent levels.



Daveway
Jan 11, 2006, 10:27 PM
It'll be obsolete around the latter half of this year, but should be able to keep up with Apple's software for at least another 1.5-2 years.

California
Jan 11, 2006, 10:31 PM
It'll be obsolete around the latter half of this year, but should be able to keep up with Apple's software for at least another 1.5-2 years.


Well, I am hoping that they keep up with Apple's software for something like three years, since that is how long my Applecare warranties will run.

What about our computers will be obsolete? Like how OS9 is obsolete?

Kirbdog
Jan 11, 2006, 10:47 PM
I think it will be a long time 5+ years before the G4 becomes obsolete. I know people that are still running old G3 iMacs. Granted it is far from the latest and greatest but it still works fine. (Running OSX 10.3) When I was at my parents my brother and I had a laugh using his 8 yr old PC. (that my father uses daily)
I am still blown away by the number of people still running windose 2000. I think that the G4 still has a lot of legs, preformance will always increase. There are still a number of things that an "old" computer can do for you.

DakotaGuy
Jan 11, 2006, 10:55 PM
I would say about 1-2 years before all PowerPC machines are obsolete as far as future software support from Apple is concerned. Sure they will ship new versions of the OS, iLife and other apps. that might be "dual platform" but you will find that most features will only work if you have an Intel processor.

Daveway
Jan 11, 2006, 10:58 PM
5+ years for G4 support is a dream, maybe even for the G5, I hate to break your heart. This will be a quick transition and the G4 is an already dated chip.

iMeowbot
Jan 11, 2006, 11:18 PM
I have the last ibook revision and I'm curious as to how long you guys think the G4 will perform at decent levels.
The time to obsolescence is going to be completely different for every user. In my case PowerPC machines won't be obsolete for a loooooong time because there are a few old Classic programs I want to keep around. Macintel will matter only when a new program (or version) comes out with features I really want, that doesn't run on a PowerPC. There's no predicting when that will happen; it's not going to be when the first Intel-only program appears, unless that happens to be something I want to use.

I know I'm going to end up with pairs of machines to run old and new stuff, just like the last time they did this :(

LethalWolfe
Jan 11, 2006, 11:37 PM
I have the last ibook revision and I'm curious as to how long you guys think the G4 will perform at decent levels.

Until your G4 no longer meets your computing needs.


Lethal

Nermal
Jan 11, 2006, 11:49 PM
I know people that are still running old G3 iMacs. Granted it is far from the latest and greatest but it still works fine.

Definitely agree. I'm using an old Power Mac G3 (233 MHz) as a file/Ventrilo server and it works fine.

I am still blown away by the number of people still running windose 2000.

Windows 2000 was not a bad OS, in fact I prefer it to XP. 98 on the other hand... :eek:

i4k20c
Jan 11, 2006, 11:53 PM
In terms of software i think we g4 people have a good 1-1.5 years, but think of it this way. Whatever software you have right now and runs will always run. It is a bit disapointing, but o well i guess, i do not buy that much software to begin with. I really kind of do wish that i had just bought a windows laptop, just because i am not sure how apple handles these types of transitions.

i4k20c
Jan 11, 2006, 11:53 PM
Definitely agree. I'm using an old Power Mac G3 (233 MHz) as a file/Ventrilo server and it works fine.



Windows 2000 was not a bad OS, in fact I prefer it to XP. 98 on the other hand... :eek:

I think windows 2000 was MS best OS to date...

Eidorian
Jan 12, 2006, 12:11 AM
I think windows 2000 was MS best OS to date...I second this motion. Yeah, scary.

Anyways, I have a Quicksilver 2002 (933 Mhz) at work as my primary computer. It's just used for terminal grunt work, application testing, and the occasional MacWorld Keynote.

Yeah, it's going on 4 years old already but it does that I want it to do. The only issue I have is the Radeon 9000 in it. Unless you need the bleeding edge you'll be fine for 3-4 more years.

Hell I'm fine using my Power Mac 8500/150. That thing is going 10 years old. I have Office, Photoshop, and Mac OS 8.6 on it. It's fine for what it does. Even if it is pokey it's great to use.

The same goes for my Power Mac G3 450.

WillMak
Jan 12, 2006, 12:23 AM
Will apple make the next OS G4 compatible?

Nermal
Jan 12, 2006, 12:34 AM
The current OS is still G3-compatible, so I'd expect the next one to still support the G4.

What was the last G3 system? The April 2003 iBook? Contrast that with the last G4 system, which they're still selling, and I'd say that G4 support will exist in OS X until at least 2009.

WillMak
Jan 12, 2006, 12:39 AM
damn if april 2003 was the last G3... That means from 2003-2006, just three years, the ibooks would have seen 3 different proccesors!!!!

iMeowbot
Jan 12, 2006, 12:49 AM
We have a three year contract for OS X upgrades, Apple had better deliver something!

solvs
Jan 12, 2006, 12:58 AM
Will apple make the next OS G4 compatible?
No. Apple will stop selling G4/5's by the end of the year, and immediately after that all new software will only run on the Intel chips. All other users will be left in the cold unless they buy a new Mac.

Seriously though, you'll be fine for awhile. Leopard will be PowerPC compatible thanks to Universal Binaries. Apple would be shooting themselves in the foot if it wasn't because most of their users will still have G4s or G5s. At the least, I'd say 2-3 years from now. More likely it will be 4-5, since the version after Leopard will probably be compatible with older Macs as well. Some future software may not, especially the high end stuff, but I suspect the G4 still has a few years to go before it's "obsolete". The G5 even more probably.

MacNut
Jan 12, 2006, 01:08 AM
The adoption to Intel will take time as most people wont jump until they have too so Apple wont want to leave 80% of there customers in the cold. I say by the time 10.6 comes out is when the PPC will be obsolete.

MacNut
Jan 12, 2006, 01:13 AM
Actually how old is the G4 chip? 8 years, what was the official life span on the G4 supposed to be.

kalisphoenix
Jan 12, 2006, 01:38 AM
G4s? :P The hell are you complaining about?;)

Deepdale
Jan 12, 2006, 03:07 AM
Until your G4 no longer meets your computing needs.

I'm in complete agreement. There is a big difference between technological and practical obsolesence. If a user's needs are relatively straightforward and the computer being utilized still allows that person to do what has to be done and enjoy the process, then it hardly pays to focus on or fret over the latest releases.

Applespider
Jan 12, 2006, 03:31 AM
I'm in complete agreement.There is a big difference between technological and practical obsolesence.

Throw another vote in for these sentiments. Sure I'd love the latest and greatest but I don't need it. I'm a home user (not a pro). Do I really care if something takes a few seconds longer to do? Probably not, the only time I really notice my Rev A Powerbook hanging a little is when I'm encoding video. Since I do that less than once a month, it's no skin off my nose to do it when I'm going to be out or overnight.

Deepdale
Jan 12, 2006, 03:55 AM
Sure I'd love the latest and greatest but I don't need it. I'm a home user (not a pro). Do I really care if something takes a few seconds longer to do?

It is often embarrassing to be within hearing distance of these conversations, but I regrettably have listened to owners of different systems argue and debate over the so-called bragging rights and significance of having an application open in 5 seconds vs. 8 seconds, and how a music CD was burned in 7 minutes as opposed to 8:30.

We all like to think our time is so terribly valuable, but a considerable number of people need a major reality check. Compared to many who regularly post on MR, my typical daily usage would be deemed simplistic and laughable, but my G3 iMac still gets the basics done.

I am getting closer to a buying decision on a laptop and want to have something to last five years, but no one should consider their systems as obsolete since new products are the lifeblood of all industries ... as for the need for speed, I am with Applespider. If something is much more demanding, do it in the overnight hours. And, besides, time spent sleeping will take away from time spent worrying.

MacTruck
Jan 12, 2006, 04:10 AM
It will be a long while before your G4 is useless if apple keeps stripping features from their intel line.

solvs
Jan 12, 2006, 04:27 AM
We all like to think our time is so terribly valuable
Couldn't be all that that valuable, especially considering where we all are. I, for one, waste most of my time. To be far though, at the moment my time is pretty worthless. But I'm also impatient with computers, so it all evens out.

Odd, because I'm pretty patient with almost anything else. Even kids. Most of the time.

Deepdale
Jan 12, 2006, 04:32 AM
Couldn't be all that that valuable, especially considering where we all are.

When you're right, you're right. :)

BornAgainMac
Jan 12, 2006, 06:11 AM
I noticed my G3 isn't supported by the new iLife '06. For me, when my G4 can't handle a simple iLife upgrade then I will consider it obsolete.

I am glad I didn't buy a G4 / G5 just before Mac World. That would be a drag.

Little Endian
Jan 12, 2006, 06:14 AM
PowerPC will be around for awhile longer the G5 especially. I am guessing it will take a couple years maybe around 2008 for the Intel machines to reach 50% of the total Macintosh user base.

Sic
Jan 12, 2006, 07:03 AM
I am glad I didn't buy a G4 / G5 just before Mac World. That would be a drag.

i'm glad i did. on average, i upgrade my computer once every 2 years. as it stands, i've got a computer that can simultaneously run all of the apps that i want it to - Dreamweaver 8, PSCS2, Adium, Firefox, Transmit, Mail, VLC, iTunes. and it does this well. if i were to have waited for MacBook pro...how much longer would i be waiting for Dreamweaver and Photoshop? (both tools which i depend on to make money) as it stands, i'm not 100% on the ETA of these products...but i'm comfortable with the fact that i wont need to upgrade until i choose to.

Blue Velvet
Jan 12, 2006, 07:05 AM
PowerPC will be around for awhile longer the G5 especially. I am guessing it will take a couple years maybe around 2008 for the Intel machines to reach 50% of the total Macintosh user base.

Maybe even longer considering how long people hang onto their Macs, particularly in design setups... we won't be replacing our dual 2.5 G5s until 2008 and we're usually ahead of the curve compared to others in the sector.

I'm hoping to replace my dual G4 1.42 at home some time towards the end of 2007 or beginning of 2008, depending on rumors... of course. ;)

kyeblue
Jan 12, 2006, 07:59 AM
I have the last ibook revision and I'm curious as to how long you guys think the G4 will perform at decent levels.

mine PB is 2.5 year old (1.25GHz 15 in), it works fine for what I do but I recently replaced its battery. My guess is that it will work well for at least another 2.5 years before I upgrade, maybe to a tablet (Come on, Steve, give what i want). The battery life and weight will be my major consideration.

my friend has a 6-year old powermac which still works well for what she does, although everyone is telling her to upgrade, she is unwilling to give up on it. and money is not an issue for her.

alexstein
Jan 12, 2006, 08:02 AM
Until your G4 no longer meets your computing needs.


Lethal


This is a very true statement at least for most of us. Personally I total agree adn I hope that Apple supports the G4 for another 1.5-2 years. But with the intel switch the end is comming soon for the PowerPC chips in general.

KREX725
Jan 12, 2006, 09:37 AM
I see two sides to this topic:

1. If you don't have a need for new software that only works on an Intel Mac you should be fine for quite a while. As stated before (and witnessed first hand numerous times), there are plenty of people out there still running a G3 iMac that mainly use MS Office, Quicken and the Internet. For these people, it would seem wasteful to dump that system that already works for you and spend the money on a new system and the software. Of course if you're using software that has to stay current or playing games you probably will want to ditch your G3/G4/G5 in the near future (couple of years?)

2. I'm thinking back to my first Mac, the Performa 630CD. It was a 33 MHz, 16 MB of RAM, 500 MB HD, fun system. Six months later the PowerPC was introduced and all of the software started changing to two formats (non-PPC and PPC only). Because of a warranty issue in the first year I was able to trade up to a Performa 6220CD PPC and used that for nearly five years. My brother who had a Performa 550 (all-in-one) without the PPC didn't last another two years before he had to upgrade.

I realized Apple is urging the universal programming, but I'm wondering how long software developers (and Apple) will actually support the PPC.

Bottom line is that you'll end up buying what you feel you need. If you feel you need to have the newest technology/software out there, you'll spend the money. If you don't need to, you won't and thus will not be "outdated."

Just my worthless $.02! :p

revisionA
Jan 12, 2006, 10:12 AM
A twist on the old microsoft commercial... but adequate.

I agree obsolescence (sp) is a personal thing. I would still play on gameboy classic, if all I needed was Tetris, for example.

I wonder why they took out fw800 and didnt put in external sata?

Some of the features in my powerbook will make it stick around probably even after I get a macbook pro revb or c

$

TheMasin9
Jan 12, 2006, 10:16 AM
It'll be obsolete around the latter half of this year, but should be able to keep up with Apple's software for at least another 1.5-2 years.

i think that apples computers retain much ability to run operating systems for 3-5 years. Heck i just got an old pm g3 up and running jag the other day, i know jag is outdated a couple years, but still, a pretty impressive feat.

ibook g4s will not be obsolete til at leaste 2008 or so. Thats just my thought. Obsolete means no longer produced or used. it may no longer be produced, but used, it sure will be.

Malfoy
Jan 12, 2006, 10:26 AM
While this is a G4 thread I can't imagine how :mad: :mad: :mad: i'd be if my box became obsolete in anything less than 3 years....

progx
Jan 12, 2006, 10:35 AM
it will be a while until Apple completely drops support of all PowerPC processors. since they promised PowerPC support well beyond 5 years. if they drop off anytime sooner, you can always file a lawsuit ;)

the G5 will probably be at the tail end in terms of dropping support, the G3 and G4 will probably be about 5 years.

hell my 1999 iMac SE is running Tiger, in fact it runs better than Panther did on it :o

mrgreen4242
Jan 12, 2006, 10:46 AM
It is often embarrassing to be within hearing distance of these conversations, but I regrettably have listened to owners of different systems argue and debate over the so-called bragging rights and significance of having an application open in 5 seconds vs. 8 seconds, and how a music CD was burned in 7 minutes as opposed to 8:30.

We all like to think our time is so terribly valuable, but a considerable number of people need a major reality check. Compared to many who regularly post on MR, my typical daily usage would be deemed simplistic and laughable, but my G3 iMac still gets the basics done.

I am getting closer to a buying decision on a laptop and want to have something to last five years, but no one should consider their systems as obsolete since new products are the lifeblood of all industries ... as for the need for speed, I am with Applespider. If something is much more demanding, do it in the overnight hours. And, besides, time spent sleeping will take away from time spent worrying.


Amen. My computer sits idle 98% of the time, I'd wager. It's about a happy medium. Enough power on tap to do what I need, but not spending $1000's extra to save a few moments here and there. The mini, in my case, is just about perfect (I need to adda faster drive to make iPhoto a bit snappier, but that's not a huge issue... and a faster GPU would be nice but I can deal with it fine). It's fast enough that I can run the occasional PS/Gimp filter in a few seconds (not near instant like a quad G5 might do, but like you said what's rush?) or encode some CDs into iTunes. Other than that it's overkill for what most people do most of the time on their computers.

Anyways, on the topic... I will speculate that of course 10.5 will be Universal, with all features being available for both platforms, and that's supposed to be out, what early '07? I'll hazard to guess that 10.6 in '09 will be universal as well, but there may be a few things as Intel only. iLife and iWork will be Universal till the '09 versions as well. FCP and Aperture I'd guess we will see Intel only on those in late '08. Your old versions will keep running of course, so this last round of G4 laptops/minis will be realistically useful until 2010 if you feel like keeping it around that long.

BENJMNS
Jan 12, 2006, 10:56 AM
Amen. My computer sits idle 98% of the time, I'd wager. It's about a happy medium. Enough power on tap to do what I need, but not spending $1000's extra to save a few moments here and there. The mini, in my case, is just about perfect (I need to adda faster drive to make iPhoto a bit snappier, but that's not a huge issue... and a faster GPU would be nice but I can deal with it fine). It's fast enough that I can run the occasional PS/Gimp filter in a few seconds (not near instant like a quad G5 might do, but like you said what's rush?) or encode some CDs into iTunes. Other than that it's overkill for what most people do most of the time on their computers.

Anyways, on the topic... I will speculate that of course 10.5 will be Universal, with all features being available for both platforms, and that's supposed to be out, what early '07? I'll hazard to guess that 10.6 in '09 will be universal as well, but there may be a few things as Intel only. iLife and iWork will be Universal till the '09 versions as well. FCP and Aperture I'd guess we will see Intel only on those in late '08. Your old versions will keep running of course, so this last round of G4 laptops/minis will be realistically useful until 2010 if you feel like keeping it around that long.

Very wise. Full of common sense. :) Thx to you both.

The thing is, you're going to get some hardcore fanatics here in this forum. I mean, who really takes the time to go on the net to post on a Macintosh forum? How many of those people at the Apple Store actually do this? Let alone their very own employees?

So I see why so many split hairs nerd style, but that's just how it is with stuff. It's kinda like the whole love for 0-60 times with cars. 1/4 races. It's a dick measuring contest.

Morn
Jan 12, 2006, 11:18 AM
I say it went obsolete some time last year already. Want to know what I mean? Just try viewing a 720p movie trailor on a powerbook... The powerbook is not fast enough for a pro machine. It's still supported but deserves to be obsolete. G5 and Core Duo is where it's at.
And OSX could do with a speedy CPU, to help the UI responsiveness and scrolling speed.

Le Big Mac
Jan 12, 2006, 11:25 AM
In terms of software i think we g4 people have a good 1-1.5 years, but think of it this way. Whatever software you have right now and runs will always run. It is a bit disapointing, but o well i guess, i do not buy that much software to begin with. I really kind of do wish that i had just bought a windows laptop, just because i am not sure how apple handles these types of transitions.

Seeing as they just released a new iLife that works with most (all?) G4 processors, it seems like there's a fair amount of like left in them. Maybe not for new software, but software up through 2006. Don't see why that can't be used for another couple of years at least.

AUBPsych
Jan 12, 2006, 03:30 PM
I think windows 2000 was MS best OS to date...


Agreed. I am still using Win2kPro on a 5 year-old PC. Hopefully the last time I will use Windows as a personal OS is when I transfer to another university in May. ;)

2nyRiggz
Jan 12, 2006, 03:38 PM
It is often embarrassing to be within hearing distance of these conversations, but I regrettably have listened to owners of different systems argue and debate over the so-called bragging rights and significance of having an application open in 5 seconds vs. 8 seconds, and how a music CD was burned in 7 minutes as opposed to 8:30.

We all like to think our time is so terribly valuable, but a considerable number of people need a major reality check. Compared to many who regularly post on MR, my typical daily usage would be deemed simplistic and laughable, but my G3 iMac still gets the basics done.

I am getting closer to a buying decision on a laptop and want to have something to last five years, but no one should consider their systems as obsolete since new products are the lifeblood of all industries ... as for the need for speed, I am with Applespider. If something is much more demanding, do it in the overnight hours. And, besides, time spent sleeping will take away from time spent worrying.


Indeed couldnt agree more. just like PCs your computer will always function for people that dont do high impact work or just looking for the simple...not to worry your G4-G5 will always be good.

Bless

Blue Velvet
Jan 12, 2006, 03:46 PM
I say it went obsolete some time last year already. Want to know what I mean? Just try viewing a 720p movie trailor on a powerbook...


Personally, I don't equate being a pro with watching movie trailers.

Eidorian
Jan 12, 2006, 03:56 PM
Personally, I don't equate being a pro with watching movie trailers.Yeah, I wanted to hold out on buying a new Mac until we got some video cards with superior h.264 decoding. This feels like the MPEG-2/DVD decoding of the late 1990's. You'd have to have a super CPU or buy a decoder card. Now most cards come with hardware DVD decoding onboard. I hope my next Mac has h.264 decoding onboard. It's annoying when you hit 60% CPU usage just by watching the MacWorld keynote.

Bern
Jan 12, 2006, 04:10 PM
Until your G4 no longer meets your computing needs.
Lethal


I agree. My Rev D Powerbook is going to do me just fine until then. I use Adobe CS2, Macromedia Studio 8, Painter IX on it and it works great. There'll be no magic switch Steve will flick when all the Mactels are out that will render PPC machines unusable. Sure updates, etc may grind to a halt in the next few years for current PPC software, but hey it all works now so why would that change in the future?

If however you are one who lusts for the latest and greatest then your PPC machine was probably outdated long before the MWSF '06.

thechris69
Jan 12, 2006, 04:35 PM
i still have a Power Mac G4 digital audio 466, and its alive and kicking. It can do my basic day to day tasks. But im saving for a imac 17 inch pro duo for gaming

pubwvj
Jan 12, 2006, 04:42 PM
I have the last ibook revision and I'm curious as to how long you guys think the G4 will perform at decent levels.

I bought the latest PPC PowerBook 15" specifically because it is PPC because I need Classic for some apps to access legacy data. I expect to use it for the next five to seven years. I used my last PowerBook (Pismo) for five and a half years and my wife is now using it. It can run Tiger. So that is at least a five year supported life which fits with all the Macs I've had all the way back to the Mac128K. My mother is still using my MacPlus, which was upgraded from the 128K. She refuses to let us get her a new iBook which is what I think she should be using. She's happy. It still runs fine and does what she needs. The machine is over 20 years old.

It is not obsolete as long as it does what you need. When you need more then you upgrade. May your Mac last long and prosper. V :)

Marky_Mark
Jan 12, 2006, 05:37 PM
I really kind of do wish that i had just bought a windows laptop, just because i am not sure how apple handles these types of transitions.

No, no, no, no, NO! You don't, you really, really, reeeeeally don't. Believe me.

I spent ten minutes downloading, installing and rebooting all three updates for QT, iTunes and 10.4.4 tonight, without issue. When I installed XP SP2, it took an hour to go on, broke my machine and then took until 2.15am to back out.

Think of all the other aspects to this. There are so many upsides to Mac ownership I lose count.

asphalt-proof
Jan 12, 2006, 05:50 PM
Until your G4 no longer meets your computing needs.


Lethal


Yes!! Obsolescence is user-specific.

exeterbohemian
Jan 12, 2006, 07:39 PM
It is often embarrassing to be within hearing distance of these conversations, but I regrettably have listened to owners of different systems argue and debate over the so-called bragging rights and significance of having an application open in 5 seconds vs. 8 seconds, and how a music CD was burned in 7 minutes as opposed to 8:30.

i agree completely. although i do confess to having myself succumb to that in the past. spec boasting as it were. as a rule of thumb i generally get a new machine every two years or so. surely nothing that i do on computers would ever 'necessitate' that frequency of upgrades, but as far as i'm concerned there's nothing wrong with wanting to be near the top of the technology curve as it's progressing. then again at present i'm so in love with my rev. d powerbook (that i've only had for about five months) that i don't foresee of any upgrades within the next few years. call it a sentimental attachment. to me that negates anyone else's arbitrary distinctions of obsolescence.

QCassidy352
Jan 12, 2006, 08:36 PM
I personally take a somewhat different approach than some others here. I like to upgrade frequently, more frequently than i need to.

But by so doing, I can always resell my old computer for a substantial percentage of what i bought it for, sometimes even like 80% or something!

So upgrading often costs me only a few hundred, all told. And what can I say, I enjoy having new computers. :)

Morn
Jan 13, 2006, 02:49 AM
Personally, I don't equate being a pro with watching movie trailers.

Really, because I equate pro with high definition. Movie trailors is just an example of a HD content.