G4 MDD and SATA drives

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Hughm, Nov 5, 2010.

  1. macrumors member

    Dec 12, 2009
    My G4 MDD (1.25 CPU, 2G RAM, OSX 10.5.8) needs a new drive.

    I'm told SATA drives are the thing to get.

    I don't know what a SATA drive is, or whether it is compatible with my machine.

    Any thoughts out there?

  2. macrumors member


    Apr 24, 2008
    It works, although you need a SATA PCI card for it to make it work.
    You also need the standard power cable to SATA power adapters.

    But I ran 2x1.5TB drives in my MDD for a year or so before I finally upgraded it.
  3. macrumors 6502

    Jul 23, 2010
    You can also use an adapter like this one. Although performance would be better with a PCI card, the adapter is an economical alternative that, when combined with an SATA drive, will likely provide better performance than the PATA drive you're replacing.
  4. macrumors 601


    Sep 16, 2007
    Northeastern Ohio
    You'll still be limited to the PATA/IDE interface speeds.

    If you do get a PCI SATA card, make sure it is a bootable card as many out there will not work if you plan to boot your OS from it.
  5. macrumors 6502

    Jul 23, 2010
    I have a Caviar Green (EADS model) hooked up with one of these adapters and it nearly saturates the bus, far surpassing any IDE drive that I have. Hooked up with my Firmtek card, it's only about 4% faster. About the same story with my Caviar Blue. However, higher performance drives or SSD's exploit that difference a bit more. Of course, we're talking about the ATA/100 bus on the MDD. The difference would also be much greater when compared to the ATA/66 bus on other G4's. My advice would be to get the $5 adapter for anything less than a Caviar Black.

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