A challenge for you MR dwellers. I need some help.

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by DryEyez, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. DryEyez macrumors 6502

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    #1
    Hi guys,

    Firstly I'll say thank you for any help you can provide. I have been doing some reading up, but I'm not very knowledgable with the older Apple machines, I use to be a windows guy, however I am looking specifically for an older Apple machine for my younger brother (he's only 14), this will be his first computer (one that he specifically owns) and so here is the criteria.

    - The machine needs to be around £100-£150 (I'm only a university student so money is tight)
    - It would be beneficial to have wi-fi
    - Main uses will be very simple iTunes/web browsing/word docs
    - I'm not sure on whether desktop or mobile laptop unit would be better (Best bang for buck perhaps?)

    I have looked around, from what I can see, possibly the Powermac G5? or iMac G4? Or possibly iBook? Like I said I'm not so sure!

    So tell me what you think would be best here. Cheaper would be better as I work part time as much as I can, but have to do around 40 hours of uni work.

    Thankyou very much for any help
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #2
    A G4 iMac, eMac, newer PowerMac G4, or air cooled PowerMac G5. If you get an G4 iMac or eMac, get one with USB 2 ports. They will be much faster and support the easier to find wireless cards.
     
  3. Bug-Creator macrumors 6502

    Bug-Creator

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    #3
    A G4 or early Intel MacMini might also fit into that budget.

    Small, relativly problem-free and WiFi included.
     
  4. cocacolakid, Mar 10, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012

    cocacolakid macrumors 65816

    cocacolakid

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    #4
    A G4 Powerbook should also be considered. While the G5 Power Mac's are very nice, they do consume a lot of electricity and give off a lot of heat (plus does the OP have a monitor/keyboard/mouse or will those also have to be purchased, adding to the final cost?).

    The Powerbook's are nicer than the iBook's and like all older Mac's, you can find some nice deals on them if you are patient.

    Otherwise a late model G4 eMac could also be an inexpensive possibility, either the 1.25ghz or 1.42ghz models have USB 2.0 ports and upgraded video cards than the earlier models, and a built in screen. In the Chicago area I can often find these for $50 or less in very good condition, but every market is different. This is likely your best bang for the buck. Clean laptops, whether G4 iBooks or G4 Powerbooks usually go for at least $100.

    And there are the G4 iMac's, but these are often more expensive in my area, often $100-150, as are the G4 Mac Mini's. Both would be good options if you find a deal.

    Take a look at http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/index-apple-specs-applespec.html, they have specs for every Mac ever made, including the Geekbench scores which helps compare how powerful each one is. (People often argue Geekbench is worthless, etc., but it does give you an idea of is this G4 more powerful than that G4, etc. if you are unfamiliar with them)

    No matter what model you look for, I'd recommend at least 1ghz or faster. The more the merrier. 1.25 or 1.42 for the eMac. 1.33 or 1.42 for the iBook, 1.33, 1.5 for the Powerbook all are still plenty fast for casual users. However, be aware that the older Power PC based Mac's, as all of the G4's and the G5's are, can have problems streaming video and usually require using a program like Mactubes to watch Youtube videos and get the best experience (it's a free program that streams videos using HTML5 in Quicktime instead of Flash in a browser (flash video does not play nice with older Macs).
     
  5. tayloralmond macrumors 6502

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    Michigan, USA
    #5
    If you have a monitor already, I'd recommend:

    1) A MDD PowerMac G4 with a dual processor. It's the easiest to upgrade (iMacs have to be taken apart to install one of the RAM sticks, Mac Minis are tricky as well). The old G4 PowerMacs are very reliable as well.

    2) An eMac 1.42Ghz. This would be your best bang for your buck seeing as you get the monitor for free and people practically give them away. The only problem is upgrades (except for RAM) are more complicated (and potentially dangerous). Also, the eMacs are known to have logic-board failures more often than some other Macs.

    3) iBook G4 (1.33GHz or faster). I picked one up (see my signature) for around $160 on eBay and it's in great shape (no cracks, fully functional) but upgrades (besides keyboard repairs and installing RAM or a new battery) are quite complicated and tedious.
     
  6. MAC MAN JW macrumors 6502

    MAC MAN JW

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    #6
    A G5 Tower will be the fastest and it use's a SATA Hard drive so you can upgrade with almost any new hard drive/ssd Wear the G4's only use PATA HD's and they are getting hard to find,G5's can have More then 2GB Ram as well. If he wants a Desktop then i would say get a G5. if he wants a Laptop i would say Get a CD 2006 Macbook or a PowerBooK G4:).
     
  7. DryEyez thread starter macrumors 6502

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    UK
    #7
    Thankyou for all the responses, it's been extremely useful. I have narrowed it down slightly.

    For desktop use, I am looking at a Powermac G5 (2005) edition which is £150 with the following specs.

    Processor Speed: 1.86 GHz Release Year: 2005
    Memory: 3 GB Release Month: October
    Hard Drive Capacity: 250 GB Product Family: Power Mac G5
    Processor Configuration: 1 Processor Type: PowerPC G5
    Operating System: 10.4.11 MPN: ApplePower Mac G5October2005

    For laptop use I am torn between the iBook for £150, though this option would leave the computer with a very limited HDD space which could be a problem. Here are the specs of the model I'm looking at.

    Release Year: 2004 Memory: 768 MB
    Processor Speed: 1.2GHz Operating System: Mac OS X 10.4
    MPN: A1054 Manufacturer warranty: None
    Hard Drive Capacity: 30gb Product Family: iBook G4
    Screen Size: 12" Processor Type: PowerPC G4

    And the second laptop is the Powerbook G4, this however is slightly over my budget and more than I'd like to spend really...but it does meet all the requirements and has the added benefit of portability, unfortunately this option, at least the one I'm looking at is £190. And again here are the specs of this machine.

    Processor Speed: 1.67 GHz Release Month: January
    Memory: 1 GB Product Family: PowerBook G4
    Hard Drive Capacity: 160 GB Screen Size: 15.2"
    Operating System: Tiger Processor Type: PowerPC G4


    All these items I'm looking at are on ebay (I wasn't sure if it was against the forums rules to directly link the pages)
     
  8. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #8
    You are allowed to link eBay listing on this forum. The PowerMac sounds like a good deal. It has 3Gb of ram already installed and it's an air cooled one.
     
  9. Goftrey macrumors 68000

    Goftrey

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    Location:
    Wales, UK
    #9
    Agreed, that PowerMac is a beast. They really are great machines, by far capable of doing web browsing & emails, they can handle Photoshop & video editing no problems too. I'd snap that up straight away if I were you.

    I think the top end PowerBooks (1.5, 1.67, especially the 17") are really not worth the money they go for considering you can pay a tiny bit more for a 2006/7 MBP.

    Also keep looking for eMacs, especially the 1.25 & 1.42, they are dirt cheap (under £50) and they'll do everything he'll want for a fraction of the cost.
     
  10. DryEyez thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #10
    In that case here are the links : )

    POWERBOOK

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Apple-Pow...Laptops_ET&hash=item46019f90da#ht_4548wt_1219

    iBOOK

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/APPLE-iBO..._Laptops_ET&hash=item3cc33ec9fc#ht_500wt_1219

    POWERMAC

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Apple-Pow...Desktops_CV&hash=item35ba37f0be#ht_500wt_1219

    I did also find this listing, a G3 iMac which is only £35! Bargain. The Powermac is a little more tempting, I also just realised I did forget to mention, regards the powermac, I do have a spare monitor/keyboard/mouse so they wouldn't be an additional cost, I should have mentioned that.

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Apple-Blu...Desktops_CV&hash=item3a71930520#ht_500wt_1219

    The iMac G3 looks really nice, especially for £35. So I suppose these are the 4 possibilities I've narrowed it down to :D
     
  11. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #11
    Don't get a G3 and don't get any G4 under 1Ghz.
     
  12. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #12
    Even tho I am new to the Mac world, I'd say go for the G5, I love my Dual Processor 1.8gzh, got a good deal on mine to, doesn't have enough muscle to be my main machine, but for him it'd be more than enough.

    Not to diss on PPC, but what does he want to do with it? Might be prudent to look at early Intel Macs for compatibiltys sake,
     
  13. jbarley macrumors 68030

    jbarley

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    #13
    really good advice!:D
     
  14. DryEyez thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Ok so the G3 iMac is a no go, but the other 3 are still a possibility. What puts me off the iBook is the extremely small hdd and limited RAM, though I don't think it would be too much of an issue it might be a big enough problem. I think the Powerbook is actually perfect, the fact that I can upgrade the ram to 2GB is a nice possibility as well, if money was unlimited for this project it is the choice I would make.

    The powermac I listed, I'm not familiar with the parts it uses, is the powermac G5 I listed dual core (I assume they all are?) as it doesn't specifically mention that in the listing. At this point for what I get for my money I think powermac is a workhorse, when compared to the other two.




    Hi G51989, the main uses of this machine will be very limited, it will be mainly to get him used to the mac os and computers in general

    Main uses for him though will be
    - Word Docs
    - Web Surfing
    - iTunes

    Basically your three main basic parts of everyday casual users. I think this would really benefit him though.
     
  15. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #15
    There's some conflicting statements on the G5's page. The eBay listing says it a 1.86Ghz G5. But the seller's listing says that its a G5 Quad. If it is a quad, it will have a high maintenance liquid cooling system. Unless you have detailed knowledge of liquid cooling systems, I'd advise against that one.
     
  16. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #16
    I see your point, but I remember when I was 14, built my 1st computer around that time ( Mowed Alot of Lawns for that, Pentium 4 1.8gzh, 512mb of ram, FX5750, I dominated HALO on that bad boy lol, still have it ), it was just nice if I saw a peice of software I really liked and had the money for, being able to run, might be worth just a little bit more so he's at least compatible for something he might want.

    If your sticking PPC, get the G5 I'd say. My Dual 1.8 dominates Doom III pretty hard, even with the FX5200 ( base model in all of them ), its a great computer, and far more expandable than a Laptop, esp for a 14 year old, 14 year olds, and I was one once, tend to drop things. I'd vote G5, I love mine.
     
  17. DryEyez thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #17
    I don't see quad mentioned anywhere ?:confused:
     
  18. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #18
    The seller's listing says PowerMac11,2, this model number means it's a PowerMac G5 Quad core.
     
  19. DryEyez thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #19
    Out of interest what's the max it can take? RAM/HDD/Customizables

    ----------

    Ah ok, thanks, I guess this is something I'd need to ask him
     
  20. Intell, Mar 10, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012

    Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #20
    If it's a 1.8Ghz G5, the max is 4Gb. If it's a Quad, the max is 32Gb. The take any SATA or PATA hard drive and have various PCI (PCIe on the Quad) cards and have an AGP slot for a Mac graphics card.
     
  21. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #21
    I COULD be wrong as I am new to the Mac World, and not a 100% Mac User, still pretty heavy on Windows 7 for my main computers ( as they have to be for my job lol, plus games! ). You can upgrade to 16GB of ram, mine came with 8, they come with at minium a FX5200 video card, which I think is better than a G4 laptop, correct me I'm wrong.

    It has room for two hard drives, and you can upgrade the video card, tho I can't tell you a ton, about that one. But they can be upgraded, pretty well.
     
  22. DryEyez thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #22
     
  23. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #23
     
  24. Goftrey macrumors 68000

    Goftrey

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    #24
    Just found a really nice eMac here...

    And I've been very, very tempted on buying this little dude...
     
  25. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #25
    I'm quoting MacTracker. It may not be up to date with the latest ram stick sizes.
     

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