ATA vs SATA in Power Mac G4

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Yoursh, Aug 18, 2006.

  1. Yoursh macrumors 6502

    May 28, 2006
    I recently got the G4 in my sig and I'm in the process of upgrading it. I plan on using it as replacemnet to my desktop PC since the PC isn't cost effective to upgrade.(I'd have to gut the thing for it to be worth while) I've figured everything out but the HD options. It still has the original 30 Gig ATA drive but I will need more space. I have research the whole 12X Gig limitation on my system and the options for PCI card expansion. My question comes down to either ATA or SATA. I plan on using it for primarily web, e-mail, itunes backup, downloading and storing torrents, and watching DVD's/videos. I would also be using it for backup storage for my Macbook as I'm planing on doing some video editing with it down the road. I guess I could get away with just adding a slave 120 Gig drive, but is that the best performance wise? Would spending the extra $ on a SATA card and multi 200+ Gig drives be worth it? Would the OSX run better on a larger drive then use the 30 Gig drive as a backup "mirror" to it, or leave it on the ATA drive and set up the others in some RAID type of configuration? What I'm looking for is someone who has used ATA and SATA drives in similar system and what their performance was. Is the speed differance noticeable or worth it on an older system like this? Any advice would be helpful, thanks.
  2. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604


    Sep 8, 2002
    The Netherlands
    Do you want to exceed the 128 GB limit on one HD?

    If not, I am sure a 7200 rpm 120 GB HD is the best option (or get two, and chuck out the 30 GB one).

    If you do want to get bigger disks, then I would get the S-ATA card and not a PCI ATA-133 card. Getting large ATA drives is harder and more expensive than S-ATA.
    But pure performance.... nah. You wouldn't notice any difference between ATA and S-ATA.
  3. mmmcheese macrumors 6502a


    Feb 17, 2006
    Actually, at this point, you can find some really good deals on PATA versions of drives because most people think they are better off getting SATA for future-proofing...
  4. AlexMaximus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 15, 2006
    A400M Base
    SATA would be way better in my opinion..

    I got the same thought going with my G4. In order to keep up with newer apps. a faster HD bus speed would be important. I made some experiance with SCSI a couple years ago and that was the best investment I ever did.
    I still even think a fast HD bus speed is even more important then the newest CPU. If you are talking SATA, it would not be very expensive compared to SCSI. The SATA Tempo from sonnet goes for 79 bucks as a host card. However, if you want speed you would like to think about the WD Raptor SATA drive with 10K rpm's. The drive is more expensive but you would have the best speed for you money without investing to much compared to SCSI.
    By the way, your G4 is screaming for an CPU upgrade, they are getting cheaper and cheaper every day.:D

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