Original Dual 2.0Ghz G5 vs. 20" iMac.

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by macgeek2005, Jun 19, 2006.

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Which would you take?

  1. Rev A. Dual 2.0Ghz G5 tower w/20" Cinema Display

    19 vote(s)
    39.6%
  2. 20" Intel iMac.

    29 vote(s)
    60.4%
  1. macgeek2005 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
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    #1
    I've been having a rather heated debate with my brother about the Dual 2.0Ghz G5 Rev A. vs the new 20" Intel iMac.

    He insists that the iMac is an all around better computer, and I insist that the G5 is better for someone who wants to be able to upgrade their machine, and add more hard drives, and alot of ram, etc.

    One thing i'm curious about is, how much slower is that original tower compared to the iMac, and if any of you could choose to get a new iMac or a brand new Rev A G5 tower.. which would you choose?

    I'm pretty sure that there will be some of you who will take the tower because you don't need the speed of the iMac, and you want an expandable machine.

    Thanks
     
  2. SheriffParker macrumors 6502a

    SheriffParker

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    #2
    Well...

    The iMac costs a great deal less.

    If both were free, and I could only choose one, I would go with the G5. The 20 inch cinema display would be sweet, and I could hook it up to the new Mac Pro when they come out, plus it would be nice to have another display for backup or dual display options.

    The iMac is probably about as fast. But I use photoshop a lot, and I'd want something that can run it natively.

    Of course the G5 tower has expandability and more RAM slots...

    Really the only things that the iMac has going for it are the lower price and the compact form factor. If space is an issue, the iMac would be nice.

    Right now I think the dual G5 tower beats it hands down, but who knows. Once the iMacs get Core 2 duo, they'll be pretty sweet. :)
     
  3. pianodude123 macrumors 6502a

    pianodude123

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  4. mduser63 macrumors 68040

    mduser63

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    #4
    Given the choice between getting either machine free, I'd also pick the G5 right now. That will change once more apps become Universal. Right now though, the G5 is faster for more stuff that really needs a fast computer (Photoshop, Macromedia's stuff, etc). I have a Dual 1.8 GHz G5 and a brand new 20" iMac. The G5 feels faster for sure. However, part of that is certainly due to the fact that it's got 2 GB of RAM and the iMac only has 512 MB (until tomorrow when I get my extra RAM).

    For someone who needs a computer right now and needs it for creative stuff (read Adobe apps), the G5 is the better choice. For someone doing video editing, the answer is the same, mostly because of expandability. My dual G5, which I use for video editing, has a PCI SCSI card to run a DLT tape drive for DVD mastering, an additional internal hard drive used as my main scratch disk and 3 externals used for storage and additional scratch space. An iMac is just not as flexible.
     
  5. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #5
    For native applications, I'd say the iMac will beat the dual G5 easily. I already saw where Digital Video Editing did a test of a MacBook against a dual core 2.5 GHz G5. They were basically equal for non-3D tasks.

    I've mostly had PowerMacs but in this case, I'd go for the iMac, Core Duo or Core 2 Duo.
     
  6. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #6
    ...so where are these free G5s and iMacs?

    I would also take the G5 tower. I have the 20" inch Intel based iMac and it's not a bad machine just the way it is. Some would want that machine to have a higher RAM capacity, but for my purposes, I don't need it.

    Now if I had the G5 Power Mac and used it for awhile, I may find uses for that amazing RAM capacity on some apps I have yet to discover. One designer I know swears that going from 2 gigs of RAM to 4 gigs made a noticeable difference...he he...but I don't have that type of money floating around for memory. At the time of the original dual G5 introduction, that much memory must have gone for a ton of money...well, anyway thank God RAM is much cheaper these days.

    In a few years, we will be talking about Macs that come with 4 gigs of RAM as the minimum setup for a Power Mac (or whatever Apple calls their pro level desktop).
     
  7. Cuckoo macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Although i think the Powermac is the superior system, i think you should go with the future, not with the past, for a new investment...
     
  8. Xeem macrumors 6502a

    Xeem

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    #8
    If both were offered, I'd go Power Mac, but my decision is mostly based on the 20" ACD. The iMac is a great deal, and a better overall value, but having an external monitor (and a good one at that) will allow for more flexibility.
     
  9. 4God macrumors 68020

    4God

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    #9
    Well, FWIW, I owned an original PowerMac G5 Dual 2.0 and now own a 20" iMac Core Duo. Let me tell you, my iMac blows the doors off my old G5. I'm not talking about benchmarks, I'm mean real nitty gritty usage. Just my 2 cents.
     
  10. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    #10
    You are right, your brother is wrong.

    I, for example, have that exact machine--a first gen DP2.0 with 20" ACD--and while the iMac is a great machine, I would not trade my tower for one, because I need the extra goodies. My 2.16 MPB is a little faster than it in some operations, but sometimes I just need what the tower has to offer.

    Depending on what you're doing, the iMac may be a little faster, its certainly more versatile (Windows and all), and it will be more "future proof" as a result of the Intel chips.

    That said, the iMac will not hold 8GB of RAM, if you want a 5.25" optical drive you need to go external, you can't stuff between 2 and 5 3.5" hard drives into it internally, there's no way to add a pro capture card or a beefier graphics card, and the fastest way to get data into or out of the iMac is the Gigibit ethernet port or FW400 port, period, neither of which is acceptable for heavy data lifting. With the G5, in addition to FW800, you can (and I, for one, have) install a card with external SATA connectors for high bandwidth data storage (capturing HD video, for example). You could also argue that for the handful of apps that optimize extremely well for the Altivec vector unit, the G5 will be somwhat faster, even ignoring that a lot of pro apps are currently not Intel native.

    Let's say you're a video pro who needs to capture uncompressed, 10Bit 1920X1080 video. Not many people in that group, but they exist. You need about 240MB/s sustained write to a RAID array to do it. Simply not possible on the iMac, both for lack of a caputre card and no way to get data to storage that fast even if you had one. On the G5, however, you could be running a 4TB RAID0 array that can sustain between 500 and 280MB/s speeds (empty to full) with the right gear.

    We're talking special purpose here, but that's the point.

    So to reiterate, for general use the iMac is a better computer, yes. But for certain people, even an older G4 tower would be better than it, simply because of its limited expansion capabilities. If I need Infiniband-grade external storage, mass RAM, monster graphics, or special-purpose I/O cards, the iMac simply isn't an option.
     
  11. Mord macrumors G4

    Mord

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    #11
    personally i'd take the g5, i've never been fond of G5 style imacs.
     
  12. Coheebuzz macrumors 6502

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    #12
    G5 for sure! To me it's the best desktop computer ever made and i don't think i will ever sell mine, even if the newer models promise a 4x speed increase. I won't go into details as other members have already mentioned some good points, but it is simply one of the most over-engineered computers ever to come out of Silicon Valley. And for me it's the only one worth it's price tag.

    But it all boils down to the needs of the user really. I only see 2 advantages that the iMac has over the G5, compactness and the ability to run windows.
    If you have a really small desk or wanna play the latest games then you'll have to *settle* with the iMac.
     
  13. Caitlyn macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 30, 2005
    #13
    The iMac has a new processor and is an all in one, therefore probably sleeker, more "portable" in a sense, etc. However, you are right in the sense that the Dual G5 is more expandable HD wise and RAM wise. Like if you upped it to say the max 16GB of course it would be faster than the iMac. It really depends on your needs for the machine. But the both have their pluses. Again, as I said though, a maxed Dual G5 will be faster than a maxed Core Duo I would assume.
     
  14. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #14
    i tend to go with newer stuff...but sometimes too new (that can also sometimes be a problem)

    when i got my ibook, rev a, i was one of the first people to get one where i lived and i thought i was so cool...he he

    and it had a 3 gig hard drive with 32 megs of ram standard running a somewhat buggy os 9.0...a couple of weeks later, those stats doubled in the same price range...shortly after, the default os was 9.1, then 9.2, which ran smoother

    the core duo imac i am typing on right now is very nice, but i can't wait for cs 3 from adobe...and some native intel-mac game titles

    i suspect people who buy an intel based imac (mini, macbook, macbook pro) six months from now will have a much greater selection of software "off the shelf" to choose from and intrinsically, that will make the computer far more valuable to a whole range of users

    many "early" adopters refuse to admit that they made a mistake(s) and were hasty...but i remember those who got the os x beta and swore that printer and scanner drivers, and adobe/macromedia stuff, was just right around the corner...what should have normally taken a few months took a year and a half (i saw all the hassles of early os x people/mac geeks/braggarts and decided to wait for jaguar)
     
  15. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #15
    A new iMac for sure, one it will smoke that dual 2.0 G5 in almost everything,two you can game with it,three it will run all the software in the world no ppc machine can come close and there will only be less & less software for that old G5 dual 2.0 and not to get this to be a pissing contest but G5 was such a heat monster Apple had to make a gigantic case with an elaborate cooling system. Im looking forward to the new PowerMac...ProMac whatever. (former Quicksilver owner:)
     
  16. Edge100 macrumors 68000

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    #16
    You should clarify...the G5 is faster for stuff that really needs a fast computer, AND is not a Universal Binary.

    The iMac IS faster than the Dual G5 in many pro apps, including Logic and Ableton Live. Check the Apple discussion forums for MANY benchmarks that back this up. Once more apps become Universal (and there are a great number of them now), the iMac will be faster in most everything.

    The iMac and G5 towers are suited to different people. I needed decent power, a compact shape, and I needed it NOW. I do audio production, and the G5 was simply out of my price range, and yet I've sacrificed nothing in terms of raw CPU power.
     
  17. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #17
    The great thing about the iMac is you can pop in a new even faster Cpu. You wont be able with G5.
     
  18. dmw007 macrumors G4

    dmw007

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    #18
    I would go for the 20" iMac with Core Duo over the 2GHz DP Power Mac G5.
     
  19. dmw007 macrumors G4

    dmw007

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    #19

    Good point Dont Hurt Me- you gotta love the ability to pop a Core 2 Duo into the intel based iMacs (and Mac Minis for that matter). :)
     
  20. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #20
    I do! the easy upgrade has allways been a waiting game in the Mac world. Waiting for Motostink, then for somebody to make that upgrade for your powermac. No more games....well more games actually :D Crysis,FEAR, well you know. iMac has turned into a pretty cool machine, wish they made this 2 yrs ago.;)
     
  21. dmw007 macrumors G4

    dmw007

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    #21
    That would have been nice. An iMac with a Pentium M would have still been a formidable machine. Perhaps not as fast as a G5, but close enough to keep the iMac one speedy little computer. :)
     

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