Best PowerMac G5? Upgrades,etc

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by iModFrenzy, May 21, 2015.

  1. iModFrenzy macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    #1
    So I want to get myself a PowerMac G5, I love my Powerbook G4 but I would like to have more power. :)

    Applications like Photoshop are a pain to use, along with some games. :(

    So my question is, what would be my best choice for a PowerMac G5?

    I haven't upgraded a PowerMac G5 before so I am not aware of it's limitations.:confused:

    What is the best graphics card? I don't mind having to flash them. I know this is a longshot, but is it possible to SLI them? Voodoo cards were able to SLI, in 1998.

    Also, what is the max ram for a PowerMac G5?

    Thanks:)
     
  2. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #2
    The max for late 2005 models is 16 GB. Earlier models max out at 4 or 8 GB, depending on if it has 4 or 8 slots.

    ----------

    A quad, obviously ;)
     
  3. iModFrenzy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    #3
    Ooo 16GBs of ram sounds nice.

    A quad sounds good as well but isn't the liquid cooling unreliable after 7+ years?:confused:
     
  4. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #4
    I've never owned a liquid cooled G5, but the LCS in the Quad is supposed to be a lot more reliable than the infamous ones in the dual 2.5 and dual 2.7.

    If you have an aversion to liquid cooling, look for a dual core(not dual processor) 2.3ghz. These have most of the same advantages of the Quad-including 16gb max RAM capacity(with DDR-2 RAM) and PCI express. They are air cooled. The dual core 2.0 is a formidable piece of hardware as well. I think the best stock graphics card is the Quadro FX4500, but couldn't swear to that.

    I personally use a dual core 2.0 as my work computer, and find that it's plenty fast for most tasks I throw at it(although don't do anything too intense). I have 10gb of RAM in it(2x2gb and 6x1gb), which is far more than I ever have found myself needing. Even resource-intensive programs like Photoshop CS4 can only use 3gb on these computers.

    I'm still looking for a Quad, though, as the "king" of G5s.
     
  5. California macrumors 68040

    California

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    #5
    PM'd you
     
  6. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #6
    I would much like a Quad as well, right now my best G5 is a dual-core 2.0 GHz. The dual-core 2.0 will handle almost any PPC software fine though, and I agree that for such software 16 GB is a little excessive. Mine only has 3 GB at the moment.
     
  7. RedCroissant Suspended

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    Aug 13, 2011
    #7
    I would have to agree that the Quad or the 2.3 DC are the best options and best versions of the G5 line. I just so happen to own both of them as well and love them very much!

    16GB of RAM(although expensive and not usually a necessity) is awesome! It's not often used but when doing things like video conversion, it really comes in handy. As an example, Handbrake is a memory hog in the G5 and I often have ti use the purge command during a conversion to prevent using the SWAP.

    Right now my Quad I only have 8GB of RAM but 2 x 1 TB HDD and the stock GeForce 6600, but I would love to have the Quadro. I also have 2 displays and that makes it more fun.

    My goal is to have a SATA controller card or at least add more of everything. It doesn't have the BT/AP card in it and that's also a goal of mine.
     
  8. bunnspecial, May 21, 2015
    Last edited: May 21, 2015

    bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #8
    I haven't gone whole-hog with RAM on my 2.0 mostly because I don't want to pay for 2gb sticks. 1gb sticks of DDR-2 are cheap or even free if you can catch them right(ask Gavin about the who knows how many I sent him :) ). My 2.0 came with the 2x2gb plus some smaller sticks(I think it had 5.5gb in 2x2, 2x512 and 2x256), and I just loaded it up with 1gb sticks to supplement the two 2gb sticks.

    Just in the past few minutes, I made a deal to buy a Quad, so we'll see what I end up doing RAM wise in it :)

    The 6600 in my dual 2.0 is driving 2x1680x1050 displays. They're random one scavenged from surplus(one is a Dell and the other a Gateway) but do at least have built in powered USB hubs(an option I really like) and are overall decent monitors. The color difference between the two drives me crazy, though, and I might invest in a couple of matching LED 1920x1080 displays(or maybe Aluminum Apple ones if I can find a pair for a decent price).

    The funny thing was that a day after I'd turned in my thesis, two of my co-workers asked me if they could have my monitors :) . I'm just moving to a different office in the building-not actually leaving-so am planning on keeping them. I did tell them where I got them, though. It's not exactly a state secret that if you talk to the right person in the department, stuff has a way of appearing a week or two later. Older LCDs come into Surplus all the time, and our department scientific instrument tech/hoarder in chief is there every Wednesday at 8:00(when they open) and grabs widescreen displays whenever he sees them. He has a shelf full of them that are free for the taking for in-department use.

    As for the Airport card, I bought a mini PCIe airport card from a later Macbook Pro and installed it via a $5 China Special mini-PCIe to PCie adapter. The card I bought was set up for exactly this purpose. I don't have Bluetooth, though. Look for a card with a part number starting in "B"(for Broadcom) and it should be plug and play under Leopard. I'm using external antennas(the adapter I bought has standard antenna screw jacks on the faceplate) but if you wanted to use the built-in antenna you could probably reroute the wiring with a moderate amount of difficulty.

    Installing the factory BT/Airport card can be an expensive option. The cards themselves are cheap($5-10), but they require a "runway" card to plug into the logic board that typically runs $90-100.
     
  9. RedCroissant Suspended

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    Aug 13, 2011
    #9
    When I had my first Quad (I had to sell it to pay rent just like my INtel 27" I sold not too long ago), I spent the money to upgrade the RAM to 16 ($250) and it was amazing. I would do it again if I had the money but that will have to wait.

    Well, congratulations! I think you're going to love it. Mostly because it's an amazing machine.

    I'm in the same boat with the displays. The Quad I bought off Craigslist came with a 20" ACD, but the idiot storing it messed it up and it's tilted and the only way to fix that would be to bend it back into place on its stand(which I don't see happening). The other display is a 21.5" gateway monitor that's just ok. The color difference is annoying but I found someone selling a dual 2.3 with a 23" ACD for $150 (but still no BT/AP). I've considered installing the 6600 from my dual 2.3 into my Quad, but running 4 displays right now is completely unnecessary. I would prefer to have more I/O options than more displays.

    I have a link for where to buy the BT/AP with the runway card and it's $149.95 refurbished. I still can't afford that though even though I really want to have that part. If you want it though, here's the link: BT/AP.
     
  10. Gamer9430 macrumors 68020

    Gamer9430

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    #10
    Well, I absolutely love my Dual Processor 2.3GHz G5. I can put 16GBs in, and it has no LCS. If I didn't have any other computers, that would still make a great Daily Driver. Runs like a champ
     
  11. Cox Orange, May 22, 2015
    Last edited: May 22, 2015

    Cox Orange macrumors 68000

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    #11
    @ OP:

    depending on what model you decide - AGP-graphics PowerMac G5s or the only 3 PCIe G5s introduced October 2005 - you have several options:

    if you just want any graphics card upgrade and not want to spend much money (100,-) or wait a very long time or flash yourself the graphics choice variety is bigger for AGP G5s (Dual Processor), if it is to get the best card go PCIe (Dualcore, warning don't mix with Core Duo Intel CPU Macs).
    Choices: http://www.jcsenterprises.com/Japamacs_Page/Blog/4B4B7BA2-7ABB-47F1-87AC-B03D37942BEE.html (see next page also)


    SATA-cards PCIe (Mac OS X 10.5):
    - out of the box SATA-III card (only working SATA-III that works out of the box) http://www.jcsenterprises.com/Japamacs_Page/Blog/4B4B7BA2-7ABB-47F1-87AC-B03D37942BEE.html no booting supported, only for data drives or hooking up an ODD
    -> 10-15MB/s faster in reading than the SATA-II Digitus card
    -> write speads can drop to SATA-I speads
    - SATA-II out of the box card (not booting): cards with this board design (the pictured one is made by Digitus) http://www.hoh.de/images/articles/e6/619581_dabf3e63fee8f82865b4d93d9c913c17_5.jpg from several vendors
    -> 10-15MB/s slower read speads than Silverstone
    -> faster in writing in general

    test results and pictures http://cubeuser.de/showpost.php?p=21621
    (start time for Photoshop CS4 with a 1TB Samsung F3 7sec. over on board SATA-I, the results are from an SSD, so if you want something to open your apps fast take into account that a 1TB drive filled only 1/3 or 1/2 is not that bad here, too.).

    bootable SATA-II controller 10.5:
    -> see Sonnet (I don't know of PCIe versions from other manufacturers)
    -> Delock 70137, flashed with a FirmTek SeriTek/2SE2-E ROM

    SATA-PCI/PCIe for OS X 10.4 and 10.5:
    - look for (non-Mac advertised) cards with a Silicone SIL3124 or SIL 3132 chipset and if the driver doesn't come with it use these http://www.drivers-download.com/en/downloadlist.php?id=72 (there is a PCI-X one for 15,-USD on Ebay)

    Note: PowerMac G4s and G3s have PCI, but a PCI-X card will work (and physically fit in most cases, look for the gaps to be on the right position. There are only three. They go ----gap--------------gap----gap-------, the bold ones are the ones that have to be present, the other doesn't matter).
    It will also bring you in real-life 65MB/s (PCI-X and 80MB/s in benchmark tools) over 35MB/s (PCI).

    Bootable cards (both 10.4/10.5):
    - Macally, Sonnet, Seritek/Firmtek, ACARD


    PS: the difference don't look big, benchmarks for different G5s http://www.macworld.com/article/1047649/dualcorebenchmarks.html unfortunately no Quad in there, but you might find some over at barefeats
    this http://www.macworld.com/product/405718/power-mac-g5-dual-2-3ghz.html notes the fps for Unreal on a 2,3GHz G5 with the base GPU.
    I am not sure anymore, but I believe the Dual Cores are a bit quieter than the Dual Processor G5s (when you get an extremely loud one it has often been seen that the thermal compound had dried out, this goes for all models, including the Quad).
     
  12. KingKen1986 macrumors regular

    KingKen1986

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    Aug 16, 2012
    #12
    Oh you Power Mac G5 lovers, just don't get a single core because my dual MDD 867 MHz 2 gigs ram outdoes my single 1.6 GHz G5 in most areas, which is why its now sitting pretty on my desk :cool:. But I would agree to go with an air cooled dual core model so you don't have to worry about the leakage and pumps going out and such with the liquid cooled units.

    :apple::apple:May The PowerPC Be With You:apple::apple:
     
  13. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #13
    You know what I said about G5s in the other thread, but I will just mention here that the 1.8Ghz (single processor) G5 we have here at work has performed very well in the last ten years and is still doing so today.

    It has 4GB of ram and runs Leopard very well. Adobe CS4, Suitcase Fusion 2, Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro.

    I was disappointed that my boss did not opt for the dual processor Mac at the time, but I have to say that this model of G5 is the main reason why I now have respect for the G5s.

    What's interesting is that we (my boss and I) got extremely lucky with this Mac. From all I am told and have heard, the 1.8 G5s were the flakiest, most problematic and prone to failure G5s in the whole model run.

    Yet this Mac was on 24/7 from Feb. 2005 to mid 2013 before the logicboard/CPU failed. There was only one other issue in those eight years and that was a bad ram stick replaced under Applecare.

    I swapped out the entire logicboard/CPU for $60 from eBay and the Mac has been running again for the last two years and still going.

    I don't really care for G5s but this G5 did win me over.
     
  14. KingKen1986, May 22, 2015
    Last edited: May 22, 2015

    KingKen1986 macrumors regular

    KingKen1986

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    #14
    Oh I was just saying that jokingly, I have a g5 too remember? haha, although it's not hooked up right now once i get another monitor it will be hooked up on my other desk. I just prefer the G4's, but the G5 was an incredible breakthrough when it came out, it helped pave the way for 64 bit computing, I like the sides of the case, just don't care for the front, and why does my MDD have two optical bays but the 1.6 GHz has one, never got that. Anyways what I'm trying to say is my G5 has never had a single problem and I have used it for 4 years, I got it from a graphics design studio that was upgrading their equipment for next to nothing. And I love that computer in its own way. But like we were talking about on another thread for some reason, some weird reason, I really like G4 processors, but thats just a personal preference not based on specs. And a question, is your processor upgrade to the 7557 on your quicksilver?
     
  15. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #15
    No worries man. I wasn't mounting a fanboy defense of the G5, just stating that while I dislike the design I appreciate the performance. I prefer the design of the G4 and with aftermarket CPU replacements you can often do better than the early G5s as well.

    I'm an Apple fan, but I come from a PC background so I'm not susceptible to the koolaide that a lot of overly zealous Apple fanatics drink. I have certain models of Mac I like and certain models I don't and I often rail against Apple for doing things I don't agree with.

    But the G4 era seems (to me) to be the sweet spot for PowerPC design and innovation so that's where my preference lies. I can respect and even be ok with a lot of later hardware (including some Intels) but again, just not my preference.
     
  16. KingKen1986 macrumors regular

    KingKen1986

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    #16
    Is your quicksilver processor upgrade to the 7557?
     
  17. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #17
    The best air cooled G5 is the dual 2.3 GHz model. I think the maximum RAM for those was 16 GB. If I recall correctly, gavinstubbs09 has some G5s for sale and he is a really great guy who can give you a hand with the upgrades as well.
     
  18. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #18
    Hmm…never thought about it. Originally it came with a Sonnet 1.2Ghz upgrade (single processor). I managed to score a GigaDesigns 1.8Ghz dual processor at one point (thanks to a forum member). That processor was adjustable. Technically you could get up to 2.0Ghz dual on it, but the heat was intense and made the entire system unstable at 1.8. The fastest I could ever get it stable at was 1.73Ghz dual. And weird system stuff was always happening.

    Turns out it was a very poor heat sink lapping process which another member discovered when I sent him the CPU. Even so, he's only been able to get it up to 1.6Ghz dual stable. Now he has a dual 1.8Ghz Sonnet upgrade which in every way shows the difference in quality to the GigaDesigns because his CPUs are stable and the heat is efficiently dealt with by the design of the unit.

    In needing to get some work done however, I reinstalled my own 1.2Ghz Sonnet back in my QS after it had been sitting off for about 6 months. Rock stable of course (it's a Sonnet) but up til now I've not ever questioned what CPU type is in there.

    I might poke around and look tonight when I get home.
     
  19. Cox Orange, May 22, 2015
    Last edited: May 22, 2015

    Cox Orange macrumors 68000

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    #19
    I would be interested which areas these are, where the Dual 867MHz G4 is faster. According to barefeats and 7 Final Cut Pro 4 scenarios the 1,6GHz G5 Single is 100seconds faster than the Dual 1,25GHz G4 (so at least in final cut the Dual 867MHz should be behind the 2x1,25GHz G4 and therefore slower than the 1,6GHz G5).
    http://barefeats.com/fcp4.html

    According to this a 2x1,42GHz G4 is faster than a single 1,8GHz G5 (iMac), though. http://barefeats.com/imacg5.html

    But the reason to get a Dual G5 is another, price comparison. The 1.6, 1.8 are roughly about the same price as a Dual 2GHz.
    There was one version of the 4 or 5 1,8GHz generations that had an iMac G5 single 1,8GHz logicboard in it and iirc that one was the worst under the PowerMac G5 1,8GHz siblings.

    Ah, found it. There are two 1.8GHz versions.
    the earlier PCI-X G5 http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/powermac_g5/specs/powermac_g5_1.8.html
    and the later, but worse PCI G5 with iMac board http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/powermac_g5/specs/powermac_g5_1.8_2.html

    Sidenote: everymac.com changed the design and spec lists. I find it harder to read and scan over the text. Also they made it illogical. Before it said: "RAM: 512MB, preinstalled as two 256MB sticks." now it is "onboard Memory: none, installed as two 256MB modules". I guess this is the iphonification of desktop specs. Also it doesn't mention the number of slots and max RAM. What a crap!

    @ OP:
    if you want to have an overlook and the chronology of all G5 PowerMacs http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/powermac_g5/index-powermac-g5.html
     
  20. MysticCow macrumors 6502a

    MysticCow

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    May 27, 2013
    #20
    Everyone is all like "get a quad get a quad get a quad get a quad get a quad."

    Then you have someone like me with a dual 2.0 G5 and I'm insanely happy with it. It runs everything I need when I need it to be a workhorse.
     
  21. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #21
    I kind of agree - my Dual 2.3 doesn't feel slower than my Quad when I had one - the only difference becomes clear when it's doing some serious number crunching.
    If you're on a budget you won't be disappointed with a dual 2Ghz+ machine.
     
  22. bunnspecial, May 22, 2015
    Last edited: May 23, 2015

    bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #22
    I have a first gen single 1.8 G5.

    In honestly, I've never used a G4 that's as fast. My fastest "factory" G4 is a dual 1.0ghz MDD(I also have a factory QS with the same speed, although the MDD has more ram and a faster FSB). I also have two G4 upgrades-the infamous Gigadesigns dual 1.8 running at 1.6 mentioned above, and the dual 1.8 Sonnet. The Sonnet is in a Digital Audio and the Gigadesigns in a Quicksilver. These two computers are more alike than they are different(despite their dramatically different appearance). They have the same 133mhz bus of the dual 867 MDD, although the max ram is a little bit lower.

    For computationally heavy stuff, I honestly feel like the single 1.8 G5 is faster than even my best factory or upgraded G4. It has 3-4x the memory(6gb) plus faster memory(PC-3200 vs. PC-2700 for higher end MDDs, and PC-2100 for the low end MDD). There is no comparison between the graphics-the 6800 Ultra in an 8x slot kicks the butt of even an X800 in the 4x slot of the MDD(and an X800 will work even better in a G5).

    Use a program that is MP and Altivec optimized but not necessarily G5 optimized(say Photoshop 7) and you might get an advantage. Move up to a newer version of Photoshop, though, and even a single G5 will kick the butt of most of the best dual G4s.

    Throw something like my Dual Core 2.0 or my DP 2.0 Xserve into the mix, and it's not even a contest.

    Don't get me wrong-anyone who looks at my collection can easily see that I love G4s. I have every variation of G4 tower(although I want a dual 1.42 to top it off)-several of them in duplicate. I have a bunch of G4 Powerbooks and iBooks, and even a bunch of older computers that I've upgraded to G4s.
     
  23. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

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    #23
    Hence I asked KingKen to tell what tasks he does that are faster on his Dual 867MHz G4, than on his 1.6GHz G5. (in seven scenarios of Final Cut 4 a 1.6GHz G5 is 100sec. faster than a Dual 1.25GHz G4, one would expect that the Dual 867MHz must be behind both.)
     
  24. KingKen1986 macrumors regular

    KingKen1986

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    Aug 16, 2012
    #24
    Multitasking, I've said it several times, the dual processor 867 is better at multitasking than my 1.6 GHz G5. You guys don't need to get all offended I have a G5 too, But since I do lots of multitasking the G4 works better for me.

    ----------


    I was wondering because than you would be running some 58 million transistors instead of the 36 some million transistors, my eMac has the 7447, same chip just no L3 cache.
     
  25. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    Kentucky
    #25
    I doubt there's anyone on here who doesn't multitask.

    Again, I'm not getting defensive-I love G4s in all forms and fashions. I've lost count of how many PM G4s I have, not to mention a bunch of Cubes, iMacs, Powerbooks, and iBooks, and an eMac. I even have quite a few multiprocessor G4s. Offhand, I have a dual 500 GigE, dual 800 Quicksilver, dual 867 MDD, dual 1ghz Quicksilver, two dual 1ghz MDDs, a Digital Audio upgraded to dual 1.8s, and a Quicksilver with a dual processor upgrade running at 1.6ghz.

    I have two older computers that I've upgraded to G4 processors.

    If you looked at my collection, you'd find more 7400 series processors than anything else.

    I just have serious doubts that a dual 867 MDD(the lowest end MDD made) could top even a low end G5 for any task. Yes, your MDD has two processors, but almost everything about the G5 is faster-the hard drives, front side bus(half the processor clock speed on any G5), the RAM, and just the fact that it's a newer and more capable processor.

    My dual 1.8 G4 is faster than my single 1.8 G5 at some tasks, but overall the G5 wins out and pretty much does everything better.
     

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