Advice on Buying PowerMac G3 B&W

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by briansolomon, Aug 6, 2006.

  1. briansolomon macrumors 6502


    Apr 1, 2005
    Murfreesboro, TN
    I'm looking to purchase a PMG3 B&W in the coming months, however, I wasn't much into Apples when they were being produced so I don't know much about them. I do know that I plan on upgrading the harddrive, optical drive, videocard, and later on the processor.

    What is the best version of this model for upgrading?

    Thanks for the help!
  2. ITASOR macrumors 601


    Mar 20, 2005
    Oneida, NY
    Don't get a Revision 1. They had IDE problems and it's more of a hassle WHEN, not if, WHEN something happens.
  3. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    Definitely avoid the Rev 1, as mentioned...

    Any particular reason you want the B&W G3? I would recommend getting a Sawtooth G4, unless you are focusing mostly on the lower price of the G3...the Sawtooth offers a number of quite significant improvements - the AGP bus, for example.
  4. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603


    Apr 29, 2005
    San Francisco
    You can save yourself some bucks and buy a 350MHz B/W and overclock it to 400MHz (although the difference in $$$ will probably be insignificant). I have upgraded my machine with 2 hard drives a DVD-ROM and a lot of RAM.

    If you are planning on upgrading the processer then I will agree with Lord Blackadder's advice and just get a Sawtooth G4.
  5. MovieCutter macrumors 68040


    May 3, 2005
    Washington, DC
    Don't...that's my advice.

    For what you'll spend on the'd be better off buying a Mac mini or a used iMac.
  6. aquajet macrumors 68020

    Feb 12, 2005
    When building a Mac from scratch, like you're proposing, it's easy for the cost to get out of hand. After upgrading all components you've listed, you'll likely have spent more money than the cost of an Intel mini. Most of these upgrades are geared for the user with a substantial amount of money already invested in their older hardware. Unless you just want to have fun hot-rodding an old Mac, your best and cheapest bet is an Intel mini.

    BTW, the older AGP G4s and Cube are the best Macs for hot-rodding.
  7. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    True, but if you are only doing basic stuff like websurfing or hosting a small website an old G3 or G4 tower can be had very cheap and will work fine.
  8. Nermal Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2002
    New Zealand
    I can second this. I have a 400 MHz G3 running Apache, PHP, MySQL and a VNC server, and the processor hasn't hit 100 % utilisation yet. For simple stuff it's easily good enough :)
  9. briansolomon thread starter macrumors 6502


    Apr 1, 2005
    Murfreesboro, TN
    It's more of a long term upgrade project. The whole processor upgrade would be coming next year if at all. I really miss having a desktop system and what not. I love my iBook G4, but it kills me to use it all the time. I love slouching down at a desk with the keyboard, proping my feet up and gazing at the monitor. It's just kind of a comfort thing I guess. The upgrades would come slowly, just as I come into the money. That being said the machine's primary use will be iChat and Safari. Maybe some old school OS 9 games, but the 'book can do that just as well.
  10. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    YOu can find g4 towers for around 100 bucks. I think iChat would run better on that.
  11. triotary macrumors regular

    Mar 17, 2005
  12. briansolomon thread starter macrumors 6502


    Apr 1, 2005
    Murfreesboro, TN
    You can buy one outright for under $50 off eBay. I also like the retro look. Perhaps it will be the start of a collection also...
  13. Lollypop macrumors 6502a


    Sep 13, 2004
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    I got a B&W G3 for the same reason, dont do all that but for me it makes a cool home server, does all my gateway, firewall, VPN, proxy and file stuff in one go!

    I was very broke student back in the G3 (and G4) days so finally being able to have one of these machines that I drooled over way back when (god i feel old all of a sudden) really is a treat!

    I would however consider a G4 if I were you, the B&W is nice, but for the stuff you want a G4 might be a better investement.
  14. RacerX macrumors 65832

    Aug 2, 2004
    Suggesting a Mac mini or used iMac would have been far more expensive than the system I just put together based on a Beige G3.

    Lets look at the price on Apple's refurbished page...
    • Refurbished Mac mini 1.5GHz Intel Core Solo... Price: $519.00
    • 512MB memory (667MHz DDR2 SDRAM)
    • 60GB Serial ATA hard drive
    • Combo drive (DVD-ROM/CD-RW)
    • Built-in AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth 2.0
    • Apple Remote
    • -no keyboard/mouse-
    • -no display-
    I don't have $500+ to spend on a system... and I didn't need any money for the system I put together...
    • Beige G3 Mini Tower... Price: $0.00
    • G4 at 533 MHz, 1 MB L2 cache
    • 640 MB memory
    • 80 GB hard drive
    • Ultra ATA/66 PCI card
    • CD-ROM
    • DVD-ROM
    • ATI Radeon 7000 video card (32 MB of VRAM)
    • two port USB card
    • keyboard/mouse
    • 21" display
    and it paid for itself. I have no money invested in this system... at all (other than my software). Actually, as I haven't spent all the funds I got from putting this system together, I guess I actually made money on this system. :eek:

    Sorry, but you can put together some nice older hardware without having to put money into them.

    Further, upgrading often means paying for things as you go, rather than all at once. By paying a little here and a little there, a system can be working for you (helping to earn the money) while you collect the items for upgrading it.

    When you buy a system outright, you are hoping that the investment pays off. When you are upgrading a system as you go... the system pays for itself (or it doesn't get upgraded).

    If someone knows what they are doing, and studies how much things cost and how to get the best deals, upgrading older systems can be much better deals than buying newer systems for more.

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