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Power Mac G3.

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by G51989, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. macrumors 68030


    I have a few questions about Power Mac G3's. I do understand that they were not made for very long, under 6 months if I am correct in my reading. And I do like things that are well, not normal. And these are not for sure, there are a few for sale in my area, ranging from 50- 100 dollars. I have some questions.

    1: What kind of performance am I looking at with these? My only experience with G3's was G3 iMacs in highschool, and they were nowhere neat as good as the XP Pro Pentium 4 Dell Optiplexes we had, I mean those Optiplexes DESTORYED those iMac G3s.
    2: To what extent can they be upgraded?
    3: How reliable are they?
    4: How much memory/hard drive space/ graphics card can bthey be upgraded to?
    5: can they run OSX? If so, can they perform things such as youtube, or DVD play back? And Play Old Games?

    I know I know a G4 is better, but I like things that you don't see often. And yeah, I also know that my 8 core PC rig, and G5 are WAY better to lol
  2. macrumors 6502a

    give a read on the faq on my sig, it may answer all your questions.
  3. macrumors 68030


    I have read your FAQ, very informative. Helped me turn my G5 from a cool paper weight into something I actually use a decent amount.

    I'm more curious into the actual White/Graphite ( ones that look like a G4 ) systems, and the specifics about them, I can't seem to find a ton of info on them.
  4. macrumors 6502a

    I guess there isn't anything too specific about them...
    Only the fact that they have PCI Cards instead of AGP (Good PCI Cards (by good I mean flashable to mac cards) may be hard to find).
    The other things you can find in everymac site or mactracker app.

    I will try to answer your questions

    1 - Once again it all depends on the upgrades and software versions.I guess your best bet in terms of better performance for less money is OS9.
    Even with the more common G4 500MHz/1Gb Ram it would be usable but not that fast in 10.4 (I know because I had G4 400MHz,1.75Gb and Geforce 6200,500Gb single plate HDD with tiger and it was a little slow).You have upgrades till 1GHz G4 I guess.

    2)1Gb ram,PCI Sata card,maybe fx5200 flashed card (I guess more than that are waste of money),Newer HDD/SSD

    3)I think they are reliable.

    4)answered in 2, google it for more.everymac has almost everything.

    5)Once again everymac had the answer, they can run till 10.4.11,but the usabillity of it will depend on the upgrades.
  5. macrumors 68030



    Thank you very much, I'll look into it. Thanks for the info.

    Even if I am stuck with OS 9 or early versions of OSX, that's fine. I want it just for how cool it is. I'm one of those people who just have to have strange things, I mean, who else buys an NgageQD on purpose? Or a eOne?
  6. macrumors 6502a

    You aren't stuck with OS9 or very earlier versions os OS X,as I said it officially supports 10.4.11,but to run it "fine" you may have to spend money.
    I guess that those machines show it's best on OS9 =)
    LOl NgageQD, weren't those the ones that die a lot?
  7. macrumors 68030


    Well, I say stuck with as in " useable ", like trying to run XP Pro on a Pentium II....tried it. Not gonna happen lol.

    OS9....terrible memories. Wasn't that the one that couldn't use virtual memory? I suppose I could dual boot to give it a shot.

    NgageQD, was the successor to the ill fated NGAGE portable phone/gaming system by Nokia. The ngageQD has a bigger/better screen, WAY better controls, and acts more like a phone. I actually used it up until it was no longer supported as a phone about a year ago, then I started using a Samsung Replenish Android phone...and kuz I'm werid. I had to buy the solar cell cover for it lol.

    Cool little system, almost N64 graphics, not bad for back then. Some cool games.

    Other Odd things I have:

    Apple Newton
    Apple 512k
    Orginal Mechanical wheel ipod
    eMachines eOne
    Philips CDi
    Vitural Boy from nintendo
    Atari Jaguar

    Just to name a few, the G3 power mac should fit in just fine with them :)
  8. macrumors regular


    You mentioned on point 2: Newer HDD/SSD, can this machine support SSD drive? If so, will you benefit from it being a slow machine?
  9. macrumors 6502a

    any machine will support an ssd.If you don't buy a pci sata adapter you must buy an ide ssd, if you buy a pci sata adapter you can buy a sata ssd.
    Any machine will benefit from an ssd due to its lower acess timings (and of course the good reading/writing speeds).
  10. macrumors 68000

    tom vilsack

  11. macrumors 68030


    Thanks everyone for the responses! Its been a huge help I do plan on buying in the next few months.

    As far as what type goes, I'm talking about the not beige tower lol.
  12. macrumors member

    for the record
    i just got a powermac g3 450mhz and it runs just as good as my g4 450mhz
    the main difference between these systems is

    a) the altivec engine - provides computing boost only relevant to photoshop + a few other apps but this was a big deal for graphics designers back in 2000
    b) the ATA disk bus - there problems reported with the revision1 b&w g3's but its easy to get a pci raid card that supports ATA133 to avoid this and get the most out of your g3, but the best thing u could do is to get a 64bit sata card that supports mac booting like the Seritek 1v4, this provides any g3 or g4 with up to 266mb/s of simultaneous throughput from SSD or Sata3 hard drives - performance is really great but only worth it if u are doing serious work on your g3 and not "fluffing about" tinkering with it

    c) graphics card is pci instead of agp - my system runs on a radeon 7000 pci card and i thought it would be visibly slower then the geforce4mx card in my g4 450mhz machine but it isnt, its just as fast to use. im trying to investigate wether or not its possible to get the system to work with a higher level pci card such as fx5200, fx5500, or 6200.. but i believe the 7000 + 9200 pci cards are the best officially supported options
  13. macrumors P6


    The best PCI card for NewWorld Macs is the PCI GeForce 5200FX. In Leopard, it will natively give you CoreImage without any modifications to any kexts.
  14. macrumors 65816


    Mine has an extensive amount of upgrades.

    450MHz G4 FastMac CPU (stock was a 350 G3)
    ATi Radeon 9200 128MB
    1GB PC/133 Ram
    SATA PCI Card
    60GB Kingston SSD
    OS X Tiger (couldn't get Leopard on it no matter how hard I tried)

    I noticed an improvement with the G4 immediately, as everything was faster. Then added the SSD and it was like a top!
  15. macrumors 604


    The problem with G3s is that they are nowhere near as powerful as a G4 even. Be careful, even a 400 or 450 MHz G4 will outperform a similarly equipped G3. The price on G4s isn't much if anything more than a G3, so why bother?

    If a G3 is all you can afford, then different story. However, I see G4s going for as as little $15 and G3s going for the same with the lowest being $10 for a busted iMac G3.
  16. macrumors P6


    Do note that this thread is about two years old.
  17. macrumors 604


    Whoops. Saw it at the top of the PowerPC thread list and figured I'd chime in. Thanks for the heads up. I wonder why it got resurrected all the sudden...

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