G4 Dual Powermac Question

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by supersalzme, Dec 23, 2005.

  1. supersalzme macrumors member

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    #1
    So I was at my friends house the other night, and noticed a G4 tower sitting in his room, unplugged and in no use. He said he would sell it to me (for cheap I may add). It's a dual 1.0ghz. My question is, how fast is this computer (for audio editing and daily apps) compared to a G4 laptop? I was thinking I would use this for my desktop, and get a 12" powerbook (once january rolls around....so I will most likely get a better price) for portable and live recording. I knew eventually I would need a tower for heavey editing, and this seems to good to pass up. What do you think?
     
  2. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #2
    Dual CPU Macs are really fast and powerful. Even if it's an older 1 Ghz G4. You'll see 25-33% more speed over a single CPU Mac. I've used a 1.8 Dual G5 and it's a screamer compared to my 2.0 Ghz iMac. How much is he asking for?
     
  3. Danksi macrumors 68000

    Danksi

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    #3
    What are the upgrade options for the PowerMacs (both G4 & G5)?

    I was considering an offer for someone's 1.6Ghz powermac, as I prefer the 'box' approach to desktops, but I couldn't find any definitive upgrades for the G5.
     
  4. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #4
    The dual G4 Powermacs are fast computers, still suitable for heavy work by most accounts. You'll probably have to put some money into it (RAM, bigger HD, maybe a newer video card), but I'm very happy with the single G4 in my sig.

    The top end G4 towers are still fetching iMac G5 prices for well-configures systems, and they can outperform an iMac G5 at many tasks - in fact they can equal the performance of a G5 tower in some tasks that are less CPU dependant.
     
  5. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #5
    For the G4's you can do some crazy CPU upgrades. I haven't heard of a G5 CPU upgrade yet. As per normal you can add new/more drives, RAM, video cards, PCI expansion.

    The G4 is limited up to the Radeon 9600. The G5 at the ATI X8xx & NVidia 6xxx Series.
     
  6. supersalzme thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 24, 2005
    #6
    He has about a gig of memory right now, the hardrive in it is an 80gb, but he said he would give me the external he used for it. I'm thinking this is worth picking up.
     
  7. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #7
    Wow, it sounds like a great deal with that RAM already there. You can add any sized PATA hard drive or an external to suit your tastes. The only downfall is the lack of USB 2.0. That's not too hard with the PCI slots.
     
  8. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #8
    correction - the best video card available for G4s is the Radeon 9800 Pro 256MB. This card will outperform the GeForce 6600GT currently standard on the G5 and is a great card. If you are brave you can overclock it to 9800XT speeds or flash a PC 9800XT for a little extra performance. For less money there are a couple versions of the Radeon 9600 available, which are also pretty good cards for just about all non-game uses (they're also fine for most games released before Doom 3).

    As for CPU upgrades there are a ton of options. At the top end you can go for a dual 1.7GHz or dual 1.8GHz G4, which will make the G4 tower (in conjunction with a Radeon 9800) as fast as many G5 towers. For a little less money there are dual 1.2, 1.33, 1.4, and 1.7GHz upgrades as well as single 1Ghz, 1.2, 1.33, 1.4, 1.6, 1.7 and 2.0GHz upgrades.

    Go shopping at OWC.
     
  9. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #9
    Ooo...9800 Pro. I'll make a note on that. Secondly, I only included the AGP PowerMac G5's and not the new PCI Express ones. Yes, there are a TON of G4 upgrades. There are even Dual CPU ones.
     
  10. supersalzme thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 24, 2005
    #10
    How much does it cost to upgrade to a a dual 1.8??
     
  11. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #11
    I checked OWC and I don't see CPU upgrades for the Mirror Drive Door Power Mac G4. :confused:
     
  12. supersalzme thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 24, 2005
    #12
    Wow, didn't even notice the link in your post....yeah they are a tad expensive to upgrade to a dual 1.8. But....it's cheaper than starting over on a base model dual G5....and I really don't think I need the latest and greatest thing. So if it's a dual 1.0, does that make it a sawtooth? I'm confused that there are two different versions of the g4 towers...
     
  13. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #13
    I forgot to mention that - if the OP's dual 1Ghz is a Quicksilver than he can buy CPU upgrades to his heart's content. However, if the machine is a Mirror Drive Door (MDD) G4, I think he may only be able to install an OEM Apple CPU, which would limit him to either a dual (or single) 1.25GHz or dual 1.42GHz. These will be harder to find and possibly more expensive than the aftermarket kits.

    The quickest way to check - a Quicksilver has 2 optical drive bays on the front, while the MDD has one, besides having a mirror plastic finish on the front (hence the name).

    EDIT: identifying a Powermac G4 can be a pain. The Yikes, Sawtooth, Gigabit Ethernet and Digital Audio G4s all look exactly the same on the outside. The Quicksilver and MDD G4s each look different. I recommend going here and looking at the different models so you can figure out what you've got. If it is truly a 1Ghz Mac, then it is either a Quicksilver or MDD, unless it is an older Mac that has previously been upgraded.
     
  14. dollystereo macrumors 6502a

    dollystereo

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    France
    #14
    The G44 Mirrored is way better than the Quicksilver, it has DDR ram, Ata 100 HD and 167 mhz bus.
    There are Cpu upgrades for them, I dont remember the clock speeds, but the machine as it is, 1ghz is pretty fast, almost twice than my Pb 1.5.
    I currently have that PM, and is a great machine, if you can afford the 9800 and some ram, maybe a Sata card, you will have a outstanding machine.
    Even compared to my Dual G5 2.3ghz it doesnt feel slow.
    PD: Is a noisy bastard
     
  15. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #15
    Unfortunately the DDR memory in the later G4 Powermacs makes little or no performance difference, since the memory runs much faster than the 133/167MHz system bus.

    I did a little research and my suspicions seem to be confirmed - there are no third party CPU upgrades available for a MDD Powermac. GigaDesigns apparently used to offer 1.25 and 1.42Ghz kits, but these (unlike the Apple OEM CPUs) were overclocked and anyway they aren't any faster than the Apple CPUs. So the only way to get a faster CPU for a MDD is to buy a pulled Apple CPU daughterboard from a reseller or ebay, and they come in three flavors, as I mentioned above (dual 1.25 or 1.42GHz and a single 1.25GHz).

    EDIT: see here for a short article describing an upgrade of a 1GHz MDD to a dual 1.42GHz with an OEM Apple CPU bought off ebay (you'll have to scroll down a bit to get to the article).
     
  16. supersalzme thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 24, 2005
    #16
    Wow, thanks for all the help. I wish more people on this board were this helpful. It seems all people can do right now is complain about everything apple has to offer.
     

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