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Old Dec 19, 2012, 04:28 PM   #1
noodle654
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Just Acquired some PowerMac G5's

So I have been in a long search for a Quad G5, but couldn't find any around my area (I rather not pay for crappy shipping from someone on eBay). So I settled with a PowerMac G5 DC 2.3GHz with stock everything. Upon talking the guy I bought it from he also had a G5 DP 1.8GHz all stock which he said was broken, so he also gave me it for free. I paid $150 for everything. I brought it home and the DP 1.8GHz worked fine, all good, passes all hardware tests and what not. So here is my question:

I have been looking for a solid desktop for my own personal use, for light gaming, school, and music production (Logic mainly). I've been aiming for a early Mac Pro, but they are a bit out of my price range still. At my other home in Long Island I maintain a weather station which transmits data to CWP, WeatherUnderground, and my own personal website. It is currently powered by a C2D MacBook, which also acts as my server. I feel like the MacBook is being put to waste, and I want to sell it as I have no need for another laptop.

How well does the DC 2.3GHz run? I already purchased a OWC 30GB SSD and 4GB of RAM for it (will probably buy more ). I am typing this on a 2012 MBP, so I know it won't keep up but I mean for my general usage, will it still run well? Also, how will the DP 1.8GHz run to act as my weather station/server?
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 04:47 PM   #2
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The DC 2.3's are still excellent machines, don't let geek bench fool you otherwise.

If you install 8 or 16GBs or High frequency-Low latency memory that will also improve things a lot, particularly when running Leopard. I don't know about that particular SSD, but some people have reported issues with SATA 3 SSDs in G5's, so something to be aware of.

Another good upgrade is the GPU, with a 7800GTX 512mb being the absolute best upgrade, massively improving rendering times, frame rates, general performance due to OpenCL support and it actually improves airflow a teeny bit

They are still very capable machines, my DC 2.0 feels very snappy on Leopard with 6.5GBs of gaming RAM, a 512mb 7800GTX and only a 5400RPM HDD which I'm sure is a bottleneck.

I'm unaware of what the software needs in terms of processing and graphics power, so can't really comment there but the DP model should suffice given enough RAM and possible a GPU upgrade if necessary.

If you're running the machine as a server, you may be better of selling it for a G4 which will be much more power efficient, and with PCI expandability can bypass the SATA 1 limit of G4s and G5s, with many more HDDs being able to be added therefore faster and more expandability if being used with RAID.

Other than that, sounds like a good deal! Btw the 2.3 DC should easily beat a C2D MB in any task that requires GPU or Processor power over a prolonged period eg. rendering etc
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 05:05 PM   #3
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You should like that system. I was using my DP 2.0 G5 as my primary computer system until I got my Quad G5 September 2011. It had 6GB of RAM and I installed a Radeon 9600 XT with 128MB of VRAM and it worked great. I still use it too. Having that SSD will make a huge difference. Basically, I wouldn't hesitate to use that 2.3 as my main computer. Also, I got a Radeon X1900 for my quad and its a darn good card for cheap.
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 05:36 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Hrududu View Post
You should like that system. I was using my DP 2.0 G5 as my primary computer system until I got my Quad G5 September 2011. It had 6GB of RAM and I installed a Radeon 9600 XT with 128MB of VRAM and it worked great. I still use it too. Having that SSD will make a huge difference. Basically, I wouldn't hesitate to use that 2.3 as my main computer. Also, I got a Radeon X1900 for my quad and its a darn good card for cheap.
I was just looking into a new graphics card, they are pretty expensive on eBay! It does have the stock 6600, but I know I will definitely need to replace it in the future. As for the DP, am I better off with a low power graphics card? It will be plugged into a 1920x1080 Dell monitor, and it definitely has the stock hard. How much RAM should I bother adding to the 1.8GHz? It has 1GB currently, would 4GB suffice?

Also: I kinda need Airport/Bluetooth for the Dual 2.3GHz, what is the best (and cheapest) option?
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 05:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noodle654 View Post

Also: I kinda need Airport/Bluetooth for the Dual 2.3GHz, what is the best (and cheapest) option?
Bluetooth USB dongle and a wifi pcie card are the cheapest options.

4GB of ram should be fine for day to day usage, I am curious about the graphics cards upgrade options as I am in the same boat, 6600le card currently in mine, not sure if I should splash out on a card, as I want to do photoshop and video editing plus general usage and from what I hear about it, for those tasks, the cards won't do a thing to help.

eBay cards are expensive for such old cards, and I never see the gtx for sale, only the fx4500.

Last edited by prvt.donut; Dec 19, 2012 at 06:10 PM.
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 08:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by prvt.donut View Post
Bluetooth USB dongle and a wifi pcie card are the cheapest options.

4GB of ram should be fine for day to day usage, I am curious about the graphics cards upgrade options as I am in the same boat, 6600le card currently in mine, not sure if I should splash out on a card, as I want to do photoshop and video editing plus general usage and from what I hear about it, for those tasks, the cards won't do a thing to help.

eBay cards are expensive for such old cards, and I never see the gtx for sale, only the fx4500.
Yeah I agree...$80-100 for such an old card is kinda crazy to me (or is it)?
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 02:41 AM   #7
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Yeah I agree...$80-100 for such an old card is kinda crazy to me (or is it)?
They are selling in the $200 range on eBay !
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 03:22 PM   #8
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I think I figured out what the problem with the dual processor is: bad RAM slots. Got a kernal panic today, restarted and nothing appeared on the screen. No start up chime, sleep light flashes 3 times, fans get real loud after a minute. I applied a lot of pressure on the RAM installed, worked for about 2 minutes before I got another kernal panic. So I guess this thing needs a new logic board.

Is this a problem with the dual core models as well? I've been reading a lot about this issue.
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Last edited by noodle654; Dec 20, 2012 at 03:29 PM.
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 03:37 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by noodle654 View Post
Is this a problem with the dual core models as well? I've been reading a lot about this issue.
No, only problem that DCs have had (Quad does not count) was some series of failing PSUs.
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 04:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noodle654 View Post
Yeah I agree...$80-100 for such an old card is kinda crazy to me (or is it)?
You'd be surprised how much strain a better GPU can take off the processor in any process that utilises the GPU. Also, cards such as the 7800 were nVidia's flagship model in 2005/06, retailing at about 500-700 at the time for the PC version, making it seem not as bad.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by noodle654 View Post
I was just looking into a new graphics card, they are pretty expensive on eBay! It does have the stock 6600, but I know I will definitely need to replace it in the future. As for the DP, am I better off with a low power graphics card? It will be plugged into a 1920x1080 Dell monitor, and it definitely has the stock hard. How much RAM should I bother adding to the 1.8GHz? It has 1GB currently, would 4GB suffice?

Also: I kinda need Airport/Bluetooth for the Dual 2.3GHz, what is the best (and cheapest) option?
Any GPU upgrade will make the 6600 seem terrible.. If on a budget a 7800 GT will make a difference, then if you could stretch a little further a x1900 GT, then you're into 7800GTX or FX4500 territory.

If you have access to a PC you can flash these cards yourself, as PC versions are a lot cheaper

Technically the official Apple Airport for Late 05' G5s wasnt offered as a User serviceable part, and is quite tricky to install. As already suggested a dongle or PCIe card is a good option, make sure it uses the Broadcom chipset and is compatible with OSX 10.5 as many only support later versions. Another thing to consider is a Airport Express which can be used as a dongle.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by prvt.donut View Post
I never see the gtx for sale, only the fx4500.
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/170946750529?
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 05:47 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by parrafin View Post



http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/170946750529?
eBay doesn't let me see it, I think because my location is in Japan.

I click the link and if I am not logged in, I can see it, but if I log in, it blocks me from seeing it!!

Maybe because I am in Japan?

Is the 7800 GTX better than the x1900? I thought they were about the same level card.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 02:11 AM   #12
parrafin
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Originally Posted by prvt.donut View Post
eBay doesn't let me see it, I think because my location is in Japan.

I click the link and if I am not logged in, I can see it, but if I log in, it blocks me from seeing it!!

Maybe because I am in Japan?

Is the 7800 GTX better than the x1900? I thought they were about the same level card.
There is quite a big difference between the 7800GTX and x1900. Whilst there is no direct comparison, Barefeats compare the 7800 GT and x1900, and also compare the 7800 GT with the 7800 GTX which gives us quite a good idea of their comparible performance.

The x1900 is slightly worse than the 7800 GT, only coming out faster on one out of 5 tests. The comparison between the 7800 GTX, Quadro FX4500 and 7800 GT shows the 7800GT being a lot slower than the other two cards, particularly the GTX.

Everything about the 7800GtX is better, the x1900 has only 256mb VRAM vs the GTX's 512mb, the GTX has faster and better memory, faster clock speed, more pixel pipelines, faster fill rate etc, making it a much better card. They also have much better reliability and power effieciency than ATI cards.

There are two versions of the x1900 (x1900 and x1900XT/XTX) which are only easily available for Mac Pro which have much better specs, almost equalling that of the 7800GTX, so don't get these mixed up as many people do and make false comparisons. If you want a x1900 it's the GT version that you require.
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