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Old Nov 18, 2011, 02:00 PM   #1
macswitcha2
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PowerMac G5, is it still useful?

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Pardon my ignorance but don't know too much about the powermac family. If I had an opportunity to have a powermac G5, would I be able to sup it up with a SSD, etc?
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Old Nov 18, 2011, 05:58 PM   #2
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That really depends on what its being used for and which Powermac G5 it is. The single 1.6GHz G5 is a far cry from the quad core 2.5GHz model. Of course, the amount of RAM and video card also comes into play. Personally, I would say any G5 thats got a dual processor and at least 3GB of RAM is quite useful. I still use a G5 as my daily driver.
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Old Nov 18, 2011, 07:28 PM   #3
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As long as you get a dual processor model (i.e. not the crippled old single 1.6GHz one) you'll be fine, but it depends what you need it for. I use a dual 1.8GHz model as my main computer, I constantly have quite a few apps open, have a 200GB iTunes library... it's not an awesome number crunching/video encoding machine, but it's very snappy for basic tasks. I've considered an SSD myself a few times, actually...
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Old Nov 18, 2011, 07:34 PM   #4
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Those use 1.5 Gbps sata. This means basically one of the fastest HDD drives will almost saturate a connection. The faster SSDs will not run at maximum speed. 3-6GB of ram depending on what you're doing is good. I recall that being the ideal range of the machine at the time. Anything past 3 is basically if you end to run multiple ram hungry applications as it isn't really a 64 bit OS in spite of the hardware.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 12:02 AM   #5
Nameci
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I have a powermac G5 2.3GHz dual core. Boot drive is SSD in software RAID0 and packed with 16GB of RAM. So about your question, it all depends on you. Nobody has the right to stop you putting an SSD or upgrading to an enormous amount of RAM. It is your money anyway, not theirs.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 10:56 AM   #6
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Most interesting thing for people new to PPC-Macs: you can't play you tube videos nicely, because flash is stuck at an early version of 10 for PPC. You need a work-around, if that is sufficient for you, or if your even need you tube is your decision.

You might also want to google the forum for "PowerMac G5 site:macrumors.com"
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 11:04 AM   #7
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Most interesting thing for people new to PPC-Macs: you can't play you tube videos nicely, because flash is stuck at an early version of 10 for PPC. You need a work-around, if that is sufficient for you, or if your even need you tube is your decision.

You might also want to google the forum for "PowerMac G5 site:macrumors.com"
With flash 10.1 on my G4 1.8GHz I can play 360p on the web in normal flash and 480p in MacTubes very smooth with no choppiness at all. At least 90% of the videos default to 360 or 240p on the web.

There is no reason at all a G5 system can't get by.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 11:08 AM   #8
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With flash 10.1 on my G4 1.8GHz I can play 360p on the web in normal flash and 480p in MacTubes very smooth with no choppiness at all. At least 90% of the videos default to 360 or 240p on the web.

There is no reason at all a G5 system can't get by.
Unless its a single 1.6 or 1.8.

My g4 plays flash very well I was surprised.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 11:22 AM   #9
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Unless its a single 1.6 or 1.8.

My g4 plays flash very well I was surprised.
A single G5 will perform close to a single G4 7448 like I have. The only real disadvantage they would have is half the L2. Your dual G4 have only a quarter the L2 a 7448 have though and that doesn't hold them back.

I wouldn't buy a G5 to begin with anyway. As far as decent OS X machines go I will take 2 G4 towers like I have over 1 quad G5 any day.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 11:24 AM   #10
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G5s are still very useful as long as they are working.

Be prepared to use older software with the lower powered single processor models. Office 2004 or iWork '07 will be fine, and if you want to use Adobe CS use a version no newer than CS3.

Just because the software or computer is older, doesn't mean it won't be useful for a good few years yet.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 02:35 PM   #11
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Don't let the Intel guys tell you that your PPC isn't good for anything. Heck, I'm writing this post on my 333MHz Lombard Powerbook. With a Lucent Gold wireless card, it surfs the web just fine for basic use like forums, email, news and downloading programs from Macintosh Garden.

I also use my Dual 1.25GHz MDD everyday for nearly everything. Sure it can't do the latest things like run HD videos directly off Youtube and do Netflix, but that's what my Core2 Duo Dell laptop is for.


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Old Nov 19, 2011, 05:48 PM   #12
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I can play 360p Youtube videos just fine in Mactubes on a single 1GHz eMac.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 09:47 PM   #13
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Lol, I'll shoot myself when I start hypothesizing the usefulness of my computer in the way it runs YouTube/flash...

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Old Nov 19, 2011, 10:11 PM   #14
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Lol, I'll shoot myself when I start hypothesizing the usefulness of my computer in the way it runs YouTube/flash...

I agree completely. Sadly many do gauge a computers worth this way. I have seen many posters on this board over the last couple years who bought an Intel Mac mostly because of flash. There were several that were happy in every aspect but flash performance.

When I have to spend 1000+ to make crap software work better I look for an alternative rather than be a slave to garbage code.
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Old Nov 19, 2011, 10:28 PM   #15
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Sadly for them who loves flash, it is fading away...
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 02:42 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by zen.state View Post
With flash 10.1 on my G4 1.8GHz I can play 360p on the web in normal flash and 480p in MacTubes very smooth with no choppiness at all. At least 90% of the videos default to 360 or 240p on the web.

There is no reason at all a G5 system can't get by.
You are right, I should have been more precise "only at 360p", but these days so many people want more than that and they will try to set their default in youtube to 1080, which won't work. Somehow, a lot people think HD is a must (I do not know why, I still have "analogue" 720p satellite TV anyway, so I am used to lower resolutions there, too

and I did not want to make it seem like the worth of a Computer is depending on flash usage, I just said many expect their Mac to run youtube videos at high resolutions, especially, when they are one of those kind of people, who buy a PPC as their first Mac today. - and I myself do not even watch a lot videos, on the internet.
I got to admit "sorry, for putting half-crap here", though.

Last edited by Cox Orange; Nov 20, 2011 at 02:50 AM.
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 05:34 AM   #17
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Sadly for them who loves flash, it is fading away...
and flash is fading away.

my Mac is a 2008 unibody Macbook, 2.4GHZ core 2 duo w/ 8GB RAM. until a few weeks ago, it was a 2007 Macbook, 2.16GHz core 2 duo w/ 3GB RAM.

i am going to assume that a top-end Power Mac G5 can be AT LEAST as fast as either of these laptops, if configured well. you're just stuck on Leopard...
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 06:16 AM   #18
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i am going to assume that a top-end Power Mac G5 can be AT LEAST as fast as either of these laptops, if configured well. you're just stuck on Leopard...
According to GeekBench scores, a Quad 2.5GHz G5 (3312) is about equal to a 2.4GHz C2D (3224-3338).
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 06:40 AM   #19
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TBH, being stuck on Leopard with a shrinking base of new software is the most irritating aspect of owning PPC macs. Netflix doesn't work, the latest version of Flash and Air don't work (I know, not necessary), in a few months Spotify won't work, and I'm wondering when Apple will stop supporting PPC Macs with iTunes updates and the like (maybe a year?)

My dual 2ghz G5 gets 99% of what I need to do done just fine, however. With modern computers it's not always about raw power, but about how you use it :]
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 11:16 AM   #20
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I use my powermacs for basically everything. I am not a youtube kind of person. I watch my movies thru itunes, and I don't watch HD either. Too silly paying double the amount while you get the same runtime and the same storyline with the SD. I am viewing it in a small screen anyway.

In my setup I can live without flash. I want my PPC macs for productivity, not for anything to brag about. It gets all the job thrown into it done and pretty much fast in todays standard.

Don't be mistaken, I have intel macs as well. But I am on my PPC machines most of the time. I listen to music on my PPC mac, I watch movies on my PPC mac, I create documents on my PPC, I design mechanical parts on my PPC mac, I create slideshows and presentations on my PPC mac, I edit and make videos on my PPC mac, I send mail on my PPC mac, I chat on my PPC mac, I call to phones using my PPC mac. What else can I ask for?
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 02:24 PM   #21
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TBH, being stuck on Leopard with a shrinking base of new software is the most irritating aspect of owning PPC macs. Netflix doesn't work, the latest version of Flash and Air don't work (I know, not necessary), in a few months Spotify won't work, and I'm wondering when Apple will stop supporting PPC Macs with iTunes updates and the like (maybe a year?)

My dual 2ghz G5 gets 99% of what I need to do done just fine, however. With modern computers it's not always about raw power, but about how you use it :]
yes but dealing with these issues and feeling the world is against you is an old tradition among Mac owners. this is the draw of the PowerPC :P
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 02:34 PM   #22
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As you can see by the responses to this thread, there is plenty of life left in the G5. In the studio I use a 12 core Mac Pro and for the past 7 years, I used a G5 at home until about 3 months ago. Eventually, my needs changed and it was just time for a new box. However, if it weren't a space issue, I'd have kept my G5. Sold it yesterday.

I imagine an SSD G5 with maxed ram would make a nice, competent machine for many, many people. Otherwise, it's just a workhorse that will continue to be of service long after it's EOL. Btw, we had G4s running older, expensive equipment because they were the only things software and OS-wise that would run it. The G5 eventually will be put to that use, but now is still a productive, albeit aging machine.
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 03:53 PM   #23
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I would like to upgrade my 733Mhz G4 with 64MB video and 1024MB ram to pretty much any G5. I play Sim City 4, Roller Coaster Tycoon 3, Zoo Tycoon 2, and C&C Generals. All on lowest settings, but I still get to play. I figure they might run pretty decent on even the oldest G5. Heck I would even dig a late model G4 MDD. I still use my iMac G3 for nintendo and super nintendo emulation.
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 04:11 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ant.honey View Post
As you can see by the responses to this thread, there is plenty of life left in the G5. In the studio I use a 12 core Mac Pro and for the past 7 years, I used a G5 at home until about 3 months ago. Eventually, my needs changed and it was just time for a new box. However, if it weren't a space issue, I'd have kept my G5. Sold it yesterday.

I imagine an SSD G5 with maxed ram would make a nice, competent machine for many, many people. Otherwise, it's just a workhorse that will continue to be of service long after it's EOL. Btw, we had G4s running older, expensive equipment because they were the only things software and OS-wise that would run it. The G5 eventually will be put to that use, but now is still a productive, albeit aging machine.
I have mine upgraded to SSD on RAID0 and maxed out RAM at 16GB. No complaints on the speed. Final Cut Studio would load up with one icon bounce and complete at less than 5 seconds.

How's that for an "old machine"?
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Old Nov 20, 2011, 05:53 PM   #25
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Sadly for them who loves flash, it is fading away...
I don't know if anyone "loves" flash. It just sucks to not be able to view something you want. It just happens to sometimes be in that crappy wrapper.
If ClicktoFlash is available for the last PPC Safari you can easily get by with it sourcing the .mp4 in it's own HTML5 player. Very nice.
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