Doubts before buying a new Powermac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by propropro, Apr 29, 2005.

  1. propropro macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2004
    Location:
    Spain
    #1
    I have chosen two different BTO PMS that cost the same:

    1) Powermac G5 dual 2.0 250GB 1GB RAM Geforce Ultra DDL 6800
    2) Powermac G5 dual 2.3 250GB 1GB RAM Ati Radeon 9650

    And I don't know wich one buy
    The first one doesn't convince me, because it only has PCI slots and only 4 memory slots, the mother board seems to me severely crippled. Obviously I would be more than happy with that graphic card.
    I like about the second one that there seems to be more expansion possibilities and plus 600Mhz maybe will make a difference. But, the graphic card is underpowered and I'm not even sure it will be able to handle a future wave of coreimage capable apps...

    I will use the PM with light apps such as iLife or iWorks/Office, but my main hobby is multimedia creation so I will use Final Cut HD Express, Logic Express and Maya LE in a no-professional but intensive way

    Any advice?

    (and please, excuse my english ;) )
     
  2. joecool85 macrumors 65816

    joecool85

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2005
    Location:
    Maine
    #2
    The 300 mhz will more than likely not make a huge difference, I would go with the dual 2 + better card.
     
  3. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #3
    The 9650 video card should be more than up to it. And worts case, in a couple of years you will need to upgrade your video card.

    Go for the extra speed on the system, you'll notice it more I think.
     
  4. dayloon macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2005
    Location:
    Stafford, UK
    #4
    I'd also go for the dual 2.0 with better video card
     
  5. hanumang macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    Top cabinet, 2nd shelf
    #5
    If you don't mind my asking, why do you want the 6800 DDL? I'm not sure that even Maya can take advantage of that power (would love to be wrong though).

    Personally, I'm in the camp that you should always get the machine with the stronger processor (and non-upgradable specs). Basically, you'll be able to update the graphics card (down the line, when you have more cash), but can you add more slots for RAM or convert PCI slots to PCI-X?

    In this case, since the 2.3 has PCI-X slots, not to mention more room for RAM and a faster bus, it's a no brainer.

    Unless, of course, you're after the 6800 for a reason. :)
     
  6. Rocksaurus macrumors 6502a

    Rocksaurus

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2003
    Location:
    California
    #6
    If you REALLY want/need the 6800, then I'd advise you get that system, because when I got my G5 1.6, I got it w/ the AWFUL GF 5200, knowing it would be bad but figuring I'd upgrade the graphics card once I could pick a good one up on the cheap. From my experience, the wait has been kind of excruciating (I'm still waiting), but a Radeon 9650 is a LOT better than a 5200, so if you can wait you can probably do so better than I've been able to.
     
  7. sd_diver macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    #7
    How about getting the revB 2.0 from the Apple Store (click on the red tag, then click on the sale button). The previous, non-crippled 2.0 is 1899 (1719 with edu discount). You can't configure them, but can alway add to them later. I have one coming. Already ordered 4 gb ram (~$350). The drawback is the 8x DVD vs 16X DVD (dual layer). I'll add one of those (~$70) when the double layer media becomes affordable.

    SD Diver
     
  8. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #8
    What do you require the 6800 for? That is an extremely powerful card, and I think the 9650 would be more than adequate for most people. Plus, especially with video cards, it never pays to buy top of the line - the technology changes so fast, that you pay a huge premium for the "best" card at the time, but then it is quickly surpassed - it's really not worth it unless you need the absolute top of the line.
     
  9. Kerry Sanders macrumors regular

    Kerry Sanders

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Hayden, AL
    #9
    I thought about it quite a long time over the last few days and I had just about decided to go with the dual 2.3 GHz system, but I ended up ordering the dual 2.0 GHz system today. I opted to take the extra $500 and put it towards the 20" Cinema display to go along with it. I opted to stay with the 160 gig drive, but I upped it to 1 gig of RAM, added the bluetooth and wireless options, and upgraded to the Radeon 9650 video card.

    With the $200 price drop on the display, the good review it got on Anandtech and the fact that it will look better than running the Mac via DVI to VGA dongle on this Samsung LCD, I could not resist. :D
     
  10. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #10
    Good choice, I think you'll be happy with your purchase. :)
     
  11. Kerry Sanders macrumors regular

    Kerry Sanders

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Hayden, AL
    #11
    Thanks. I can't wait to get it here. I have videos that I took of my son that I have never been able to do anything with, because it is so difficult on this Windows machine. I am looking forward to playing with the new Mac. I was happy to see that iLife '05 was going to be included.
     
  12. Kerry Sanders macrumors regular

    Kerry Sanders

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Hayden, AL
    #12
    Just curious, when you refer to the previous 2.0 GHz system as the "non-crippled" system, are you referring to the "downgrade" to PCI slots or is there more than that?
     
  13. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #13
    iLife 05 is an amazing, powerful suite of tools, and to be getting it included with your Mac helps justify the cost even more. I'm sure you'll find it easy to use, but if you ever need any help or advice, you where to come - MacRumors will answers all of your questions. :cool:
     
  14. oingoboingo macrumors 6502a

    oingoboingo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2003
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #14
    Just out of interest, what potential PCI-X expansion cards would you be thinking of using? I'm not sure how many PowerMac G5 owners have actually installed a true PCI-X card, but I'd be willing to bet that the number is very low. Anyone reading this thread have a PCI-X card installed?

    The number of RAM slots (4 versus 8) is a definite downside though, and one which a much larger proportion of G5 owners would probably run afoul of (as opposed to the PCI versus PCI-X expansion slots).
     
  15. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #15
    GPUs can be upgraded, CPUs cannot. 2.3 enough said.
     
  16. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #16
    This is something I've always wondered as well - how many people NEED PCI-X over PCI? Or do they want it "just cuz"? For me at least, if I was buying a PowerMac, I could care less if I was getting PCI or PCI-X slots. But then again, I'm not buying a PowerMac because I'm not a Pro user, and hence don't have a need for anything PCI-X. ;)
     
  17. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #17
    CPUs can be upgraded in some cases. But in this case, not. ;) Agreed, it's probably better to upgrade a GPU at some point in the future if more graphics performance is required rather than upgrading an entire machine if the processors are too slow. Although I really question if a dual 2.0 GHz G5 could ever be considered "slow". Mind you, I'm pretty sure I said the same thing about my 200 MHz Pentium II when I bought that 10 years ago... :cool:
     
  18. woodsie macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    #18
    but who's really needing more than 4gig or ram??...

    IMHO, 4 slots should be enough for most users.
     
  19. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #19
    I agree with this as well - how many users would fill up all their RAM slots, have 4 GBs of RAM, and be kicking themselves that they didn't have more? How many PowerMac users actually have more than 4 GB of RAM installed in their machines, I'd like to know...

    I'd also like to know where they get the money from to buy four 1 GB sticks of RAM.... ;) (At least the prices are finally coming down on those modules...)
     
  20. oingoboingo macrumors 6502a

    oingoboingo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2003
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #20
    Having 8 slots instead of 4 gives the user a bit more flexibility with regards to their RAM configuration, especially as the G5 PowerMac requires that RAM be added in matched pairs. For example, my 1.6GHz G5 PowerMac shipped with 256MB (2 x 128MB DIMMs) as standard. I then added an extra 1GB of RAM (2 x 512MB DIMMs). I can't add any more memory without having to either throw out, or attempting to sell my existing 2 x 128MB DIMMs. If I had 8 slots, I could easily just purchase another cheap pair of 512MB DIMMs (for example) and keep all my existing memory.

    With regards to needing more than 4GB RAM, I mostly agree. There are of course going to be a small percentage of power users who will genuinely make good use of RAM in excess of 4GB, but for most users it's probably more than enough. As I mentioned above, 8 slots is more desirable from a flexibility point of view.
     
  21. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #21
    If you really need the expansion capabilities of the PCI-X slots, don't get the biggest video card -- it drains your PCI-slot capabilities (limiting the total power available.)

    Code:
    Graphics IC	Video SDRAM	Power usage	PCI power available
    
    ATI Radeon 9600	128 MB		15W		75W
    
    ATI Radeon 9650	256 MB		15W		75W
    
    GeForce 6800	256 MB		105W		30W
     
  22. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #22
    Quite true. I guess I'm rushing things in some respects by thinking in "1 GB modules", as they're not quite at the price point yet where everyone can easily afford them.
     
  23. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #23
    Interesting, thanks for this stat, I had no idea...
     
  24. sd_diver macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    #24
    Also ram limit

    Also the ram limit. For $350, I ordered 4 gb. Would not fit in the current 2.0 (with the stock 512). For me, the rev B was $250 less than the rev C (although both my brother & I got 10% off scratchers tonight at the UTC San Diego Apple Store - bought 3 iSights with it). Got home and the new machine was waiting (even though the Apple store showed it as preparing to ship) and best part is that Tiger was in the box (but not installed).

    I guess it just annoys me that Apple would take something away. I would imagine that it is actually costing them to keep a lesser motherboard in stock.
     
  25. Lacero macrumors 604

    Lacero

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #25
    I would go with the Dual G5 2.0 with the 6800 card. So much of Tiger and Lion? will utilize Quartz Extreme and CoreImage in the GPU that there's no reason to get the high performance video card.

    If you feel you can upgrade later, then by all means get the Dual 2.3 with the 8GB RAM expansion capability and buy a 6800 or whatever card comes out in the future as your needs change. This may be the best course to take if you're on a budget.
     

Share This Page