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View Full Version : Blue and White G3 Powermac, upgrade options?


CrackedButter
Oct 3, 2004, 05:35 PM
I just got a Blue and White G3 Powermac, i'm wondering what my options are with regard to upgradability.

I'm looking for a PCI Graphics card for this thing and also I was wondering if anybody has had any luck with a USB 2 card.

I've been to lowendmac.com and it has helped a little (processor overclocking and such) but i havn't had any info on gcard or USB 2.

The one i have got will ship with a ATI RAGE 128 card.

Would a B&W take a Radeon 7000, it is PCI afterall? Also i heard that this card can be the PC version and you would have to flash it to make it work under a mac? I dunno, i'm asking you guys... :)

yippy
Oct 3, 2004, 06:18 PM
There is a Mac version of the Radeon 7000 PCI card that would work just fine. It might be the best you can do right now. I think it can take USB 2, with the right drivers/OS, however, do you need USB 2? Because for anything that actualy takes advantage of it, firewire is often a better choice.

If you have the money, you might want to think about a hard drive and ram. In fact, I would reccomend upping the ram before the graphics card if it isn't at least 512mb, if it is, don't worry about it.

bigsteve3
Oct 3, 2004, 06:50 PM
I agree that you should at least have 512MB RAM. Are you going to use OS X on it? I'd also say to get a bigger and faster hard drive, because 6GB (that's how big mine was) is not very much, especially with OS X.

There is also the ATI Radeon 9200 PCI video card, which is relatively new. While is has tons of features, the fact that it is a PCI card (and not AGP) means that your speed will still be limited (because the computer won't be able to communicate with the card very fast). Check it out:

http://ati.com/products/radeon9200/radeon9200me/index.html

I can honestly say that my old G3 B&W 400 MHz runs Panther fine, even with the default Rage 128 card.

Hope things work out, and let us know what you end up upgrading.

-S

CrackedButter
Oct 4, 2004, 02:14 AM
I got this thing off ebay, it came with the 6GB HD, but it is 7200 rpm. But i have a 30GB HD in a newish pc which nobody uses. The machine also came with 384 megs of ram, i also have another 256 from the pc which is also nice.

USB2 is needed for my dad's digital camera.

I have heard you can overclock this thing by altering the jumper settings as well.

rhpenguin
Oct 4, 2004, 10:56 AM
Heres what im doing to my B&W.

SIIG 4ch SATA RAID controller
4x 250gb hdds
Sonnet G4 800MHz Upgrade card
ATi Radeon 9200 PCI
LG 12x DL +/- DVD-RW
and a ThermalTake Volcano 7+ CPU cooler

This machine is going to be my fileserver/DVD backup machine. While there are other machines that are more worthy of these upgrades, this is what I have and im going to make the best of it.

The radeon 7000 PCI will work nicely in your B&W, but i would sugest for the cost you check out the 9200. Also, overclocking is very possible on these chips and i sugest you check out www.xlr8yourmac.com (http://www.xlr8yourmac.com) as it will give you all the necessary info to do it. Just keep in mind the stock Apple heatsink sucks donkey balls. If your going to overclock pick up some Arctic Silver compound to replace the no doubt dried out and generally poor/old condition themral pad.

FoxyKaye
Oct 4, 2004, 11:31 AM
Check my signature for upgrades I installed in a Blue/White - If I was buying a PCI hard drive controller now, I'd invest in SATA rather then ATA/133. Also, check eBay or Craigslist.org for the Radeon 7000 - it is a quantum leap ahead of the stock Rage 128. The machine I have with the upgrades below flies just fine, as I said to someone once, "It's not the fastest ship in StarFleet, but it's solid."

rhpenguin
Oct 4, 2004, 11:59 AM
FoxyKaye, Where are you sticking that fourth HDD? I know theres room for three on the bottom, but where is your fourth located? Did you get the drive sled from a Rev.B? Can you post pics?

Im just trying to decide to stick my fourth drive and im kind of at a loss at the moment..

bousozoku
Oct 4, 2004, 12:06 PM
FoxyKaye, Where are you sticking that fourth HDD? I know theres room for three on the bottom, but where is your fourth located? Did you get the drive sled from a Rev.B? Can you post pics?

Im just trying to decide to stick my fourth drive and im kind of at a loss at the moment..

The middle drive sled has room on the top and the bottom for two low height ATA drives.

My B&W machine has a PowerLogix G3/800 upgrade, which works quite well. I'm considering the ATI Radeon 9200, since the 7000 was considered to be underpowered in comparison to the original Radeon Mac product. Having 1 GB of RAM certainly helps too because it keeps virtual memory from dipping into the very slow onboard ATA/33 controller.

rhpenguin
Oct 4, 2004, 12:13 PM
The middle drive sled has room on the top and the bottom for two low height ATA drives.


Hrmmm.. Thats not going to work.. All my drives are tall.

Need to make an adapter or something to get this to work for me. Thanks for your help bousozoku.

FoxyKaye
Oct 4, 2004, 01:21 PM
FoxyKaye, Where are you sticking that fourth HDD? I know theres room for three on the bottom, but where is your fourth located? Did you get the drive sled from a Rev.B? Can you post pics?

Im just trying to decide to stick my fourth drive and im kind of at a loss at the moment..

Actually, it is nothing that complicated - My Blue/White is one of the *early* revision 1 machines, so the mounting points for three of the drives are plates that screw into the bottom of the chassis. These three drives I run off of the ATA/133 card (the 60, 80, 100 GB drives).

Since I didn't want two drives on my second ATA/133 channel (this is the drive where I keep all my MP3s, and I've noticed that other activity on its channel tends to make them skip when playing), I used the ATA/66 channel that is on the motherboard itself (to which the machine's original IDE drive was connected).

My machine doesn't have a Zip drive, so my fourth drive (30 GB) I slipped into the chassis for the Zip drive and connected to the motherboard as a single IDE drive on its master channel (the DVD-ROM is the master drive on the motherboard's secondary channel). You'll need to purchase some extra long 80-wire IDE cables to pull this trick (I've routed them so they don't block the fans), and a 4-pin power cord extender helps too.

Actually, I've also considered adding a 5th hard drive using the extra slave drive position on my ATA/133 card, in which case I would mount it above the CD/DVD chassis (there's about 1.5" of space up there). But at this point running all that cable seems daunting.

Note that I've also added some extra cooling to the system: the G4 processor heat sink has a fan mounted on it, and I've also installed a PCI fan I bought from newegg.com for like $8. Apple doesn't recommend using the empty Zip drive opening for a hard drive because of cooling issues, but I've never felt anything but lukewarm air coming out of any vent on the system, so I figure I've got this down. If cooling does become an issue for the 4th hard drive, I've had some success attaching old Pentium I heat sinks to hard drives with thermal goop and adding a fan behind them - in which case I might consider removing the front plate of the plastic cover over the CD/DVD drive and empty Zip drive space to facilitate cooling.

Hope this helps! :D

rhpenguin
Oct 4, 2004, 03:41 PM
Thanks for the insight.

Ive considered throwing one of the hdds up into that zip bay, but once i put my Tt Volcano7+ in there im going to have to cut away most of that so i can actually close the side of my case. So what im going to do is make two little rails that i can mount to the side of a hdd that is mounted in the bottom of the case and then mounting the other drive right above there with some cooling between.

FoxyKaye
Oct 4, 2004, 04:39 PM
Thanks for the insight.

Ive considered throwing one of the hdds up into that zip bay, but once i put my Tt Volcano7+ in there im going to have to cut away most of that so i can actually close the side of my case. So what im going to do is make two little rails that i can mount to the side of a hdd that is mounted in the bottom of the case and then mounting the other drive right above there with some cooling between.

I wonder if you could use a drive sled from one of the Beige G3/PowerMac systems as the "little rails" you mention above? Maybe with the right combination of posts and screws, you could actually even mount it to the chassis of your case, too. Dunno...

Sounds like an interesting project though - good luck!

rhpenguin
Oct 4, 2004, 04:44 PM
actually i bought a couple of those from applemacdude and theyre not going to work like i thought.. what im thinking is a small piece of sheet metal with holes in it that i can mount on the holes on the side of the hdd and then just slide the other one in right on top and screw it together..

Something like this....

http://69.193.177.111/albums/applhrdware/hddidea1.jpg


btw, 500th post :)

bigsteve3
Oct 4, 2004, 04:58 PM
CrackedButter,

You can indeed overclock via different jumper settings. However, the B&W G3s have hit or miss luck with the overclocking. I believe it makes a difference whether your processor was an IBM one or a Motorola. I don't remember which mine was, but I ended up putting mine back to factory jumper settings because it would never turn on when overclocked - except in winter, when it was really cold :)

I hope that you are able to overclock it, but beware...some jumper settings lower the speed of the PCI bus, which would cripple your graphics card...

-S

Mord
Oct 4, 2004, 05:12 PM
beware of sonnet upgrades the downclock the sytem bus without telling you, a daystar 600MHz upgrade will outpace an 800MHz sonnet anyday because the sonnet uses a ppc 7450 which has a 7 stage pipeline so is slower clock for clock, that paired with the system bus makes it a crap upgrade a 600MHz daystar is a better choice (and you can run the at 650MHz they are tested at that speed at the factory :D)

CrackedButter
Oct 4, 2004, 05:32 PM
thankyou, these are all interesting posts.

rhpenguin
Oct 4, 2004, 07:24 PM
I believe it makes a difference whether your processor was an IBM one or a Motorola.

the difference between the processors is what the core is made out of.. I believe the moto ones were aluminum and the ibm ones were copper. Also as a sidenote to bigsteve3's comment, if you add some thermal grease like arctic silver 5 (or whatever you choose) it will help the cooling. Also you could attach an older pentium heatsink and fan using the stock apple heatsink clip (to get proper cooling to the CORE of the processor) to help cool it.

CrackedButter
Oct 5, 2004, 06:26 PM
How would I go about buying fans and other such cooling devices for this thing?

rhpenguin
Oct 5, 2004, 06:28 PM
its not too tough, you just need to find a creative way to mount them..

best way ive found is to use twist ties from garbage bags.. It doesnt look good but it gives you the flexability to put the fans wherever you want.

CrackedButter
Oct 5, 2004, 07:09 PM
What are twist ties and what about a power supply, any type?

Also i've just tried to upgrade the HD and it won't detect the thing, even the disk utility won't find it, it did at first and I was formatting it, then it stopped doing it and then couldn't find it.

Another question, how do you remove the Zip Disk and the Optical Disk? Once removed, can you buy any old vanilla style optical disk and bung it in?

rhpenguin
Oct 5, 2004, 08:21 PM
twist ties are basically a strand of wire that you use to tie up a garbage bag.

Use them to fasten a fan off anything in your case.

As for replacing the optical drive/zip... theres two tabs inside the case that hold the bezel assembly in place. CAREFULLY (because tehy can break easy) push the tabs in and push the bezel forward.

then theres two screws holding in the drive bay, remove them and push the bay assembly out the front of the case.

If you want any other info, feel free to contact me by any of my IM contact methods (preferably msn or aim).