iMac G5 or PowerMac G5

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Platform, Jan 27, 2005.

  1. macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #1
    What would be the best choise

    iMac G5 17" 1.8 1GB RAM Superdrive

    PowerMac G5 Single 1.8 1GB RAM Superdrive

    They both have just about the same price
    But the iMac has a 17" LCD and is a lot more compact so it will firt better on my desk (already have a PC in the computer "slot" but want a mac :D )
    The PM has expandibility with 4 Ram slot's vs 2 and has 3 PCI slots and you can change the Graphic card as well as FW 800.

    Will use iWork, iLife, Photoshop, intenet instant messaging and some more

    But what computer the iMac G5 (17" 1.8) or the PowerMac G5 (single 1.8) :confused:
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #2
    PowerMac... provided that

    a) You can find the space and
    b) you can afford to get a half-decent monitor (what's the point in spending that much only to hook it up to a crap 15" screen...)

    You already know the advantages to having the PM...
     
  3. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #3

    Thank you

    But i allready have a 17" LCD with two ports VGA and DVI so if I were to use it I would have my PC on the VGA and the Mac on the DVI
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    Location:
    Antwerp-Belgium
    #4
    depending on the use of photoshop (large files or not) the choice is simple.

    So:
    do you need PCI slots?
    will you need screenspanning (dual monitor setup)?
    is FireWire800 needed?
    will you need to have more than 400GB storage inside the mac?
    will you need more than 2GB of ram?

    if you answer all of the above with No -> iMac G5
    about screenspanning there is a hack, I don't know if it works on the iMac... so that is something to dany if you say yes tot hat one I guess.

    I have 1,5GB of ram in my G5 but realised that I sometimes use very big files (1,2GB, 700MB...) and that 3GB would be ideal for me... but if you use files that are for instance max 300MB there schould be no problem.

    Photoshop is multiprocessing enabled so if you are a die-hard user you might benefit from getting a dual processor, but you want the single 1,8.

    So my answer would be: get the iMacG5 its a great machine and comes with a good screen (I would consider the 20" because I need some space in Photoshop -> Hence my Dual Screen setup...)

    I hope this can help you a bit in the right direction...

    J
     
  5. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #5
    Thank you

    I have never really worked with big PS files, wanted the gig of Ram for a fast OS since i heard that it is memory hungry and that by adding more ram it will last longer into the future with new OS's and apps ;)

    Have read about the screen spanning on the iMac G5 but it says that it works fully but then the guarentee is not valid anymore.

    Will not need any more than 400GB (if so very unlikely can get an FW external drive) don't think that I will need more than 2GB RAM, tought that 1GB would be very good for my purposes and Tiger and other new apps.

    Is FW 800 big or is USB going to go past it :confused: PCI not sure but i think that the iMac has enough plug's or is there anything for my uses that could require any addon's

    Then is there problems with all-in once, and is the noise level high on either the iMac or the PM :confused:

    How long will these machines last in terms of running the latest apps and OS X versions :confused:
     
  6. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2004
    #6
    Heya,

    I was facing the same choice as you; iMac 17in vs. Power Mac sp 1.8GHz.

    Given I already have a Cinema Display, I realised the Power Mac was actually my only choice, but it's the machine I want for a lotta reasons, mainly expandibility. I wish now that I've sold my Powerbook that I didn't get that LaCie external firewire drive though - cudda put the money towards a bigger *internal* drive for the Power Mac.

    Not to turn this thread into a 'When are updates gonna appear?' but I know I for one am waiting until Tiger is released before I buy the Power Mac. Not only will I 'save' the money needed for the new OS, because it'll be preinstalled, but because by then, I reckon the sp 1.8 baseline model will have moved to a 2GHz CPU. It's only a thought, but it does seem realistic. And of course, I need the time to save :eek:

    Edit: I musta posted just after you. There's no reason why you shouldn't get a good few years out of either machine, imho.
    Cheers,

    andy.
     
  7. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2002
    #7
    i was looking into this as well. i am not going to be able to afford a G5 PowerMac right now, but i wanted to know how the iMac stacked up. I found that the iMac has some serious power hitches. I am not sure what leads up to it, but if you head over to bare feats.com there are some stats on it.

    one that i noticed was here

    i dont think it makes it a bad deal. i still like the iMac, but i think i will wait for a revision before picking one up. there are still certain tasks that a slower G4 can out pace it on, which is insane when you think about it.

    anyone have some insight on what i am refering to here. is there something i am overlooking? i will post other test results if i find them.

    so yeah, go with the PM
     
  8. macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #8
    The "new" PowerMac 1.8 is the same machine as the iMac G5 (design diagrams support this), and should get nearly identicle stats when equiped with the "base" GeForceFX 5200 graphics card.

    Spend a nominal amount to upgrade the PowerMac to the Radeon 9600XT and it starts pulling ahead of the iMac G5.

    http://www.barefeats.com/g518.html

    The PowerMac 1.8 with GeForceFX 5200 isn't on all the charts, but it should be the same as the iMac G5 1.8

    When you choose any other PowerMac, you get the XServe/PM chipset -- so there is a performance boost there as well.
     
  9. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2004
    #9
    Go the PM G5.

    Why? You can upgrade the video card at a later date to significantly expand the useful life of the machine.

    ATI X800...YUM
     
  10. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2005
    Location:
    Belgium
    #10
    IMac or Powermac

    When struggling with the same question a few months ago, I came across a Tidbits publication "Take control of buying a Mac".

    Good advice is usually expensive but not in this case and when I finished working my way through the questionaries, I decided to go for the iMac.

    Maybe you might just want to take a look at www.tibits.com

    Good luck

    Asimov
     
  11. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #11
    Thanks but they want money for it at tidbits.com :mad:
     
  12. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #12
    If I don't do any other upgrades than the 1gig of RAM how long will a machine likek these last in terms of OS X and new apps :confused: (ofcourse i don't want it anymore when it is really slow) + Don't have the money to ugrade all the Graphics and the HDD
     
  13. Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #13

    Your machine will remain usable for at least 5 years, probably longer.
    There are many working Macs out there that are 6-7 years older albeit with some upgrades – new hard-drive, etc.

    It may not be able to run the latest games of 2010 but it still will be OK for lots of things... I wouldn't worry about it.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #14
    Thank you very much

    And is there anything on the iMac G5 except the GPU that i cant upgrade/ contra the PM :confused:
     
  15. macrumors member

    HeWhoSpitsFire

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Location:
    Oregon
    #15
    Go with the PowerMac, my little old G4 867 is still kicking strong, and runs all my current apps great (Photoshop CS, Dreamweaver MX 04, and many more).

    My main argument for the PM is expandibility. Gone through several minor overhauls of hardware over the years (drives, video card, etc...) and it's been worth every bit.
     
  16. macrumors 6502a

    oingoboingo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2003
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #16
    Anything that requires a PCI slot.

    Apart from the PCI slots (and the AGP graphics card, as you mention...a very important potential upgrade), there is nothing that the PowerMac can have upgraded that the iMac G5 can't. The difference is that the PowerMac can have more of it, and invariably it's faster. Examples:

    - Internal hard drives: PowerMac has 2 internal SATA bays, iMac has 1.
    - RAM slots: PowerMac has 4 or 8, iMac has 2.
    - Optical drive: PowerMac has industry standard 5.25" IDE optical drive bay which is easily replaced/upgraded with any commodity drive, iMac relies on more specialised, vertically mounted slot-loader. This may or may not be user-replaceable...not sure.

    The PowerMac also has FireWire 800 and Gigabit ethernet. In general it's more expandable and more configurable in just about every respect. That's what you pay for...you're trading the 17" LCD screen and compact form factor for this extra future-proofing and expandability.
     
  17. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    #17
    I was in the same boat - iMac 20" vs. PM 1.8 vs. PM dual 1.8. I was at 98% PM dual 1.8, then I figured out that since PM RAM chips need to be paired and iMac doesn't, then PM effectively has 2 or 4 RAM slots. Still, probably go with PM dual 1.8.
     
  18. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2005
    Location:
    Belgium
    #18
    PM vs Imac 1,8

    Putting a Dual G5 in the comparison is like trying to find out the difference between taking the stairs or stepping into an elevator.

    And talking about the paired RAM chips story. I suggest you take a look at what the people at www.barefeats.com can tell you about this theory.

    Asimov

    :D
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    Location:
    Antwerp-Belgium
    #19
    about the Videocard (one topic a lot of people talk about whenever talking about mac...)

    if you're just doing regular 2D applications (as I do and I run 2 screens on my 5200 card...) you will not really notice a difference with a faster card (or you must be in the market for apple's 30"... then you can't do without a heavy card) except when you want to use it for Gaming or 3D applications...

    so thats one other thing to consider when choosing for the iMac or a PM... will I need fast 3D acceleration???

    the statement of the paired ram -> that only applies to the 8 slot systems... the one with 4 slots like the single G5 don't need to have pairs, thats why the iMac G5 has two slots wich are not needed to have paired ram...

    :edit:

    Oops it seems I was wrong, indeed all PMG5 systems need paired ram so it seems... hmmz... sorry...

    :edit:

    J
     
  20. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #20
    I am in a similar situation, but I don't have a good monitor to use with a PM already (I've got a 19" CRT with some convergence issues). When you factor in even an inexpensive 17" LCD, the PM moves way out of the price range of an iMac. Hence, I'll be getting an iMac next month.

    Since you have a nice display already, I would say that the the PM is goign to be a better choice for you. While the PM will take up more space UDNER your desk, considering that you already have a PC display ON your desk that you will use for both systems, you will save deskTOP space, which is more important, imo.

    Regards,
    Rob
     
  21. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #21
    Thank you

    On my PC i have an GeForce FX 5200 (non Ultra) but with 128MB RAM, and that workes just fine on the games i have ;)

    And for the Ram slots i tought of that, so the iMac has a bit of an advantage for upgrades and if I were to buy one it would be with a gig RAM and don't really think that I need more than a gig now or in the near future, or am I wrong :confused: (My PC has 512DDR 400 and works good so tought that a gig would be great :p )
     
  22. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #22
    The extra software that the iMac has is it of any good kind :confused: (Quicken 2004, WorldBook 2004, 2 games, AppleWorks) the PM does not have these.

    Also wich one of these makes the most noise :confused:
     
  23. macrumors member

    HeWhoSpitsFire

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Location:
    Oregon
    #23
    The question is:

    1: Do you need your comp to do your checkbook?

    2: Do you study history? Serious or for fun?

    3: Have you ever played Nanosaur?

    The PM is still more worth it. iLife and iWork are only $79 a piece. But come preinstalled on new macs.
     
  24. thread starter macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #24
    Thanks

    Wold be nice to have the software and I do study history.

    Have not played nanosaur :p

    iLife 04 comes pre-intalled on these not 05($20 ugrade)
    And iWork does no come pre-installed on any machines as far as know

    But does anyone know about the noise level of the machines :confused:
     
  25. macrumors member

    HeWhoSpitsFire

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Location:
    Oregon
    #25
    Without a doubt, the PM will make more noise. With that said, the G5 PM is a somewhat quiet machine, especially compared to my G4 with a Radeon 9800 Pro.

    I would still suggest the G5 PM for longevity. It will server for years to come. As have many Macs before.

    The Imac as form efficient as it is, as well as capable, doesn't provide the options a PM does. Expandibility is the key. As Tiger capable(not that the iMac is not) the PM offers many possibilities, as the iMac has some, but few.

    Honestly, not a bad choice either way, but I would opt for the PM.
     

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