iMac G5 - worth buying?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by iann1982, Aug 17, 2009.

  1. macrumors regular

    Jul 9, 2008
    Leicester, UK
    Hi - I've come across an iMac G5 for £200, it's the 17" model, 1gb of ram.

    I primarily want to use it as an apple TV server / file server, with occasional use as a tv (with dongle)

    Any views? Good price / bad price?

    I'd been looking at the G4 - yet, they seem more expensive for what you get.
  2. Moderator emeritus


    Dec 10, 2008
    Looked at eBay and they were +300£ so you have a nice deal. I would get it. It's good machine for server use (HD is easily changeable).
  3. macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009
    I'd try to find a PowerMac G4. It was intended to be used as a server. The drives are easier to replace as well.

    As long as it has gigabit ethernet, you should be good.
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2008
    I have an iMac G5 ALS 20" and tbh if it was me i wouldn't get a G5 iMac for anything that involved long hours powered on like a server.

    There's a lot of hearsay/evidence that they're susceptible to overheating which might be combined with/caused by capacitor issues in the psu or on the main logic board. A couple of links below give you a flavour

    Of course you can't tell whether a specific machine will have problems or not, but in my opinion it's reasonable to say that as a model they're not as reliable as other Macs. Others on here may disagree.

    If I were to buy one - i'd look to get as much of a trial period as i possibly could - for example I've just retrieved mine from home as it was shutting down regularly - as best i could tell it would last around 6-8 hours before shutting down with no warning. So someone could easily sell an iMac like that and the new owner might not discover there was a problem for days.

    I've traced my problem to the psu overheating and i'll either leave it outside the machine as it is now - working fine, buy a refurb one or replace the capacitors and see if that fixes it permanently.
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Oct 29, 2004
    iMac G5's

    At this age they're dropping like flies. Better off putting your money on the G4 - the chap above is spot on. Far greater reliability. I've seen these go on and on.

    +1 on the Gb ethernet or newer.

  6. MTI
    macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2009
    Scottsdale, AZ
    The capacitor problems weren't from overheating, it was just a case of bad industrial espionage winding up with defective parts being used in many brands of computers.

    £200 is a bit dear, but not unreasonable.
  7. macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009
    Are you talking about my response?

    Here's a guide to setting up an iTunes server.
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2008

    but apparently one of the symptoms of the poor electrolyte is the caps overheating and or drifting out of spec and so causing the machine to display probs like unexpected switch off, display corruption and other things.

    i have no personal experience apart from what i said about my psu above, rest i've picked up from reading around to try to understand my problem.
  9. macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009
    If you end up getting a PowerMac, beware some are quite loud. If you want it to be quiet, you can make a wood box with a door. Put a 60 mm case fan in the back and power it with one of the smaller nine-volt batteries. Then line the box with melamine foam aka Basotect aka Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I've always wanted to do this, but haven't gotten around to it.
  10. macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    I wouldn't get it, for not much more (I'd guess since I don't really know UK prices) you should be able to get a Core Duo, even a Core 2 Duo, both of which will be SO much faster and will be supported by Apple at least through the next OSX upgrade; and since Snow Leopard will be out in a month at most does it really make sense to buy a computer that won't even support it?
  11. macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    I'd only buy the iSight iMac G5s, the last and best revision. They came with an Apple remote, too. I like the 17" 1.9ghz iMac G5s. Can take 2.5 gbs of ram.
  12. macrumors 68020


    May 18, 2004
    i'm still using my G5 iMac, and it's working fine..........but I don't think you should get a G5 at this point. Buying the cheapest intel based iMac you can find would be a better idea

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