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View Full Version : Is it worth it to upgrade the processor?


burritos
Jan 27, 2003, 06:30 PM
I have a G4 400 mhz. I've added a gig of ram and a 80 gig HD. How much is it to upgrade the processor? For those who have done it, was it worth it and was it difficult to do?

sparkleytone
Jan 27, 2003, 06:37 PM
if its an AGP powermac, then i would say it is worth it to upgrade the processor and the videocard if you havent already done so.

if not, you arent going to get quartz extreme, which is a huge improvement to the OS.

burritos
Jan 27, 2003, 06:56 PM
No, I haven't upgraded the videocard. How high of a processor can I upgrade it too. And to what videocard?

crazytom
Jan 27, 2003, 06:56 PM
http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/cpucards.html

MacAztec
Jan 27, 2003, 07:36 PM
I have the same machine, with a 32MB Radeon Mac Edition. Same drive, same RAM.

I want to upgrade to the 800MHz G4, but im not sure if its REALLY worth it.

Dont Hurt Me
Jan 27, 2003, 07:55 PM
Go to the febuary issue of Mac addict magazine there you will find an upgrade they did to a g4 400 and took it to a 1 gig g4 via sonnett. they also show a tempo trio which allowed for a faster hard drive for upgrading that 400 of yours. 1 word from me though is when you start adding all the new technologies and cost of upgrading an old machine a lot of times it may just be better to sell the old one and get a slightly used one say a 733 that can be bumped to 800 or a 800 stock. taking my 733 to 800 was to easy but not for someone who isnt electronic savy. anyways good luck with your endeavor.:cool:

idkew
Jan 27, 2003, 08:05 PM
I believe in SMALL upgrades, followed by NEW computers.

I know you can double or triple the clock spped of many older macs out there now, but in my mind it is a waste. There are bottlenecks in those machines which will ALWAYS be there, no matter what. The new machines do not have these bottlenecks, so buy one of those.

On the other hand, getting a new graphics card may get another couple months of happieness out of you for little money. After you feel your computer is too slow again, and you can't just spend $50 on RAM, just take the money you have been saving for a new computer and use it. Donate your old one to your nearest school, if it can still run pretty modern software.

sparkleytone
Jan 27, 2003, 08:12 PM
shoot, you can still get like $500 or so on eBay for it to put towards a new computer.

my policy is to max out ram immediately. its worked wonders for my iBook.

if you havent experienced quartz extreme, get yourself a good videocard. i noticed you didn't know what it is. do you not have jaguar?

http://www.apple.com/macosx/jaguar/quartzextreme.html

Kethoticus
Jan 27, 2003, 08:34 PM
There are bottlenecks in those machines which will ALWAYS be there, no matter what. The new machines do not have these bottlenecks....
Yeah... but one of those bottlenecks is my wallet. I gotta B&W 350MHz G3, and right now anything would be an improvement. And, since I can't afford to lay out a grand for even a relatively new machine like a 933, $400 for a 700 or 800MHz CPU upgrade is pretty attractive. The only thing I'm waiting on now is for there to be trans-550MHz G4 upgrades for B&Ws. There's now an 800MHz G3 upgrade, but I want that altivec goodness sprinkled on my CPU.

idkew
Jan 27, 2003, 08:49 PM
Originally posted by Kethoticus

Yeah... but one of those bottlenecks is my wallet. I gotta B&W 350MHz G3, and right now anything would be an improvement. And, since I can't afford to lay out a grand for even a relatively new machine like a 933, $400 for a 700 or 800MHz CPU upgrade is pretty attractive. The only thing I'm waiting on now is for there to be trans-550MHz G4 upgrades for B&Ws. There's now an 800MHz G3 upgrade, but I want that altivec goodness sprinkled on my CPU.

then, as i said, spend a little now, but save most of your cash for the NEW computer you will get in a while. Think 970's.

pgwalsh
Jan 27, 2003, 09:20 PM
Originally posted by Kethoticus

Yeah... but one of those bottlenecks is my wallet. I gotta B&W 350MHz G3, and right now anything would be an improvement. And, since I can't afford to lay out a grand for even a relatively new machine like a 933, $400 for a 700 or 800MHz CPU upgrade is pretty attractive. The only thing I'm waiting on now is for there to be trans-550MHz G4 upgrades for B&Ws. There's now an 800MHz G3 upgrade, but I want that altivec goodness sprinkled on my CPU. I have a B&W G3 400 and I just put a Radeon 7000 PCI card in it. I don't know about anyone else, but I'm not impressed with the card at all. My Rage 128 seemed faster. My screen saver on Jaguar 10.2.3 is really friggin slow with the 7000 and the smooth transitions (from the 128) are now jagged. Ouch!

I've been looking at the PowerLogix ZIF G3 800 as an upgrade option. I like it, but wish it had a 1mb level 2 cache. Since there's very few AltiVec enhanced programs out there, I'm not too concerned with AltiVec. Plus a number of tests with the processors at the same speed show the G3 to be faster or equivalent.

burritos
Jan 27, 2003, 09:51 PM
in a G4 400 that aren't in a the current power desktops?

bbarnhart
Jan 27, 2003, 10:05 PM
Look on eBay for a lot of stuff. I've upgraded my 8500 several times for less than $100 each time or for free (a junk 9GB SCSI hard drive from work is gold to me). You do have to do some research and find your bottlenecks and do the math.

Add some searches for eBay so it will automatically find items for you.

pgwalsh
Jan 27, 2003, 10:26 PM
Originally posted by bbarnhart
Look on eBay for a lot of stuff. I've upgraded my 8500 several times for less than $100 each time or for free (a junk 9GB SCSI hard drive from work is gold to me). You do have to do some research and find your bottlenecks and do the math.

Add some searches for eBay so it will automatically find items for you. Yes, I do like the scsi drives. The performance on OS X on my G3 is damn good. Better than OS 9

Kethoticus
Jan 29, 2003, 02:46 AM
then, as i said, spend a little now, but save most of your cash for the NEW computer you will get in a while. Think 970's.
I'm way ahead of you brother. I just want something to maybe hold me over for another year or so, then splurge on an IBM architecture that has had some time to mature.

I have a B&W G3 400 and I just put a Radeon 7000 PCI card in it. I don't know about anyone else, but I'm not impressed with the card at all....
This is bizarre. I experienced an enormous boost. My screen savers went from 12fps to 60, e.g.

I've been looking at the PowerLogix ZIF G3 800 as an upgrade option. I like it, but wish it had a 1mb level 2 cache. Since there's very few AltiVec enhanced programs out there, I'm not too concerned with AltiVec....
Okay, but keep in mind that the latest incarnation of OS X does respond very well to altivec.

blue&whiteman
Dec 13, 2003, 10:58 PM
Originally posted by sparkleytone
if its an AGP powermac, then i would say it is worth it to upgrade the processor and the videocard if you havent already done so.

if not, you arent going to get quartz extreme, which is a huge improvement to the OS.

I have quartz extreme running on a Radeon 7000 PCI card and it works quite well. People should really check their info before giving advice or you can steer people the wrong way as you did there.

bousozoku
Dec 14, 2003, 12:52 AM
Originally posted by blue&whiteman
I have quartz extreme running on a Radeon 7000 PCI card and it works quite well. People should really check their info before giving advice or you can steer people the wrong way as you did there.

People might be a little more careful with their wording too. ;)

You might want to mention that you're using a hack to enable a PCI card to work with Quartz Extreme. Quartz Extreme does not work natively with PCI cards--only AGP cards.

blue&whiteman
Dec 14, 2003, 01:49 AM
fair enough :)

there are just so many people that have this mindset that a mac 2-3 years old or more is garbage. I see it all over these forums.

I am here to say that even a 9600 tower and some even older than that can be upgraded to a G4 and with a hack enable quartz extreme etc. all the things that make osx run well on a system. sure, its not going to be as fast as a dual mdd G4 or something but its still a huge boost over what they had and quite acceptable for anyone that does not have the money for a new system.

so to all of you out there with an older mac and a small bank account I say ignore these people that make you think your mac is a waste of space. I have upgraded virtually every aspect of my blue and white. the end result? a system that is quite snappy and responsive on osx 10.3.1 and saved me well over $1000 even with all these upgrades. G4/500 cpu, Radeon 7000, Western Digital 120GB, LiteON CDRW, more RAM.

I swear to you on my own life that you can make osx a snappy os on virtually any mac made in 96 or later with the right choice in hardware. If you need any advice just msg me and I will be more then happy to help.