1. Welcome to the new MacRumors forums. See our announcement and read our FAQ

A G4 Processor

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by aaron.lee2006, Jan 1, 2007.

  1. macrumors 65816


    I know we hear this all the time but having my MacBook Pro prtable is awsome. But I also want a desktop to work with audio. And no I don't want to buy an external keyboard mouse and display :) So basically would an iMac G4 700 mhz/256/40 gb (I can store stuff elsewhere) 15" LCD be good for running Reason, GarageBand 3, and those types of programs? I can use my MBP for games and other stuff but I would like something to come home pull out my desk and have something to work on. So please reply. I would like to use an iMac G4 for audio/sound :)
  2. macrumors 65816


    No. Reason and GarageBand need too much balls, if you don't mind me being crude. I'm not sure Reason 3 would even start up on that machine. If it did start up, it would be !@#$ing intolerable.

    I'd recommend an old Power Mac G5 for those apps, if you can afford it (they're not too much more than an iMac G4, nowadays). You can find a 15" LCD for under $75. Mice and keyboards cost pennies. I'm not sure about a Mac mini, but that would probably be even better if you had external hard drives and enough RAM.
  3. macrumors 65816


    Actually.. I should have done this before but I just checked the system requirements for both Reason 3 and iLife from Apple and the other company.

    It says it requires a G4 or G5 Processor .Reason 3 for windows requires like 533 mhz so I assume it would be better on 700 mhz on a Mac.

    iLife only requires a G4 or G5 aswell. It requires 733 mhz for iDVD. so everything else should run and it requires 1 ghz for HD video. I don't use HD video. And remember this is a secondary machine so all the things I can't do on the iMac which would be nothing because the iMac can handle most of it I will do on my MBP.
  4. macrumors 65816


    Feel free to disregard my advice... but I did not have a good time trying to run Reason 3 or GarageBand 2 on an iBook G4/1GHz/768MB. Others might report better experiences. All I know is that I was not able to use either app at anywhere near the capacity I wanted. Even on my ex-iMac CD 2GHz/2GB, I had to continually mixdown tracks in GB to get to the complexity I wanted. And I'm not a musician, mind you. I'm just a tinkerer.

    But I'd like to hear other people chime in.
  5. Moderator


    Staff Member

    It will work fine, but will not be overly fast.

    Just remember to lock tracks after you have them edited and rendered the way you like them. This will free the CPU to work on the parts of the composition that you want to edit, or re-master.

    As long as you are not working heavily with Audio units, or other processor intensive aspects of the software, you should have a fair amount of power to do amateur work in Garageband.
  6. macrumors 6502a


    The operative word here is MINIMUM requirements. IMHO, meeting the minimum can be a very time consuming proposition. If you're gonna go that route, get an old gigabit or digital audio G4 and throw an OWC processor upgrade into it. It'll smoke the imac and you can do upgrades a lot easier.
  7. macrumors G4


    Why? That's the cheapest option by far and the MBP will be so much quicker than the desktop G4 that you won't enjoy using it. If you really want a desktop I'd get a G5 or possibly a 1.42Ghz Dual Core G4.
  8. macrumors 65816


    by the way I would be getting it for $349. and if I want add airport it would b a little more.
  9. macrumors 601


    i don't think anyone's going to be able to give you a definitive answer, because the answer is "it depends". it depends on how much you expect out of the machine, how many plugs you're going to use, how complicated your patches are, how many tracks you want to use, etc etc.

    i ran reason 2 on my g3 ibook w/o any problem, but to say that without qualifying how i used it wouldn't do you much good. i feel that i was able to run a lot of stuff on it, but i'm sure there are others who feel a reasonable (pardon the pun) song would bring such a machine to its knees.

    hey, when the forerunner to pro tools came out, people were running it and making albums on mac II ci's with (something like) 16 meg of RAM. any machines we talk about these days are more than capable, so long as your expectations are managed.
  10. macrumors 65816


    LoL I'm an audio beginner so plugs and patches :p what are those? I might end up buying the an M-Audio FastTrack for my guitar and a mic would that be okay? In other words would it run nicely?
  11. macrumors 6502a


    Reason will run fine on a G4 CPU. Reason is perhaps the best audio program out there that does not take a massive CPU and ram to run. The program is written very well.

    I made a lot of tracks with Reason 3 on a 1Ghz iBook G4.

    Garageband on the other hand, is a hog. For large projects Garageband pretty much requires a G5.
  12. macrumors 65816


    Ok now heres the real question! Where do I get the cheapest iMac G4? Or is $349 really worth that money?
  13. macrumors newbie

    Garageband (and to some extent Logic as this seems to be a glorified version of Garageband aimed at the Pro Audio market) is "bloatware", the most bloated audio app to ever run on a Mac. I could only run a few tracks of Garageband (iLife 04 version) on my G4 533MHz Digital audio with 1.25GB of RAM and 7200 rpm 8MB cache ATA 133 Hard Drives.

    I won't even bother installing Garageband 3 on my G4 as it stands. Hence I also have a similar dilema to resolve. Do I get an $800 G4 iMac 1GHZ, or, upgrade my G4 with a $550 1.467GHz upgrade card? I'm in Australia in case you were wondering about the rip off prices. I'll probably go the G4 upgrade route.

    Funny how we need faster processors, more memory, bigger hard drives, newer macs (or Bintel boxes) to run the latest software that ultimately does the same job as the machines we used to do 5, 10 or 15 years ago. Ah well I guess that's "progress" for you.
  14. macrumors member

    just to put my 2 cents in...

    I'd say that a 1ghz G4 would be the smallest that you would want to shoot for it seems that plugins are the main culprit for CPU use and it never hurts to have lots of memory.

    Now i use logic 7 mostly but i do have experience with many other apps. Now i use a 1ghz G4 powerbook 1.25gb ram (external monitor, keyboard) and while i can bring the computer to it's knees if i want too. It almost always can do the job as long as i work smart. (example: make sure i use the bus instead of having 7 seperate reverbs going) As much as i would like a new macpro this computer can still do everything that i need it too. Faster is always nice but this easily gets the job done so until it breaks or a real advance happens that requires me to upgrade this works for me. :)
  15. macrumors 6502

    Wow. This is one incredibly misinformed statement. Logic is an app that has an approximately 20 year history, meaning that it is in NO way a glorified version of GarageBand. On the contrary, GarageBand is Logic with a very different GUI, and a whole HEAP of functionality stripped away. Logic is, in fact, the most CPU efficient DAW on the Mac by a LONG shot. What makes GarageBand so 'bloated' is that when you load in sounds, there are typically quite a few effects loaded on top of the sound by default. Most people would not be able to get the sounds to sound like they do out of the box were it not for these presets. Turning off some of the effects will have a dramatic effect on GarageBand's performance.
  16. macrumors 6502a


    Heh. Indeed. The Logic Users Group is the oldest still existing internet users group:


    An industry standard for many types of music creation. Especially film music today.

Share This Page