Bitten by the PPC/OS 9 bug, need some help...

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Steve.P.JobsFan, Jun 27, 2015.

  1. Steve.P.JobsFan macrumors 6502a

    Steve.P.JobsFan

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Location:
    Cincinnati
    #1
    Hey everybody, I'm wanting to get back into the PPC game. The last time I used a PPC Mac was when I was in grade school back in 2005, my school teacher had a Ruby iMac G3 running Tiger and I played on it all the time.

    I wanted to get a PPC-based Mac to run some old games and software, that's it. I highly doubt I'll even be connecting it to the Network.

    I'd like to run Doom, Wolfenstein 3D, (possibly) Myst, Duke Nukem 3D, some version of The Sims (SimCity 2K or SimTower?), Rune, Quake, all those amazing OS 9 games.

    I'm on a bit of a tight budget, however. I found somebody relatively local (50 miles away, just across the Michigan line) selling what I believe is a Sawtooth G4 with Dual 450 MHz G4s, 768 MB of RAM, an unknown video card (presumably the stock Rage 128 Pro), and an unknown sized hard disk with OS X Panther (10.3) currently installed for $35. It's in decent cosmetic shape in the photos for the listing and does appear to boot to the desktop. The seller says in the listing I can boot it up and verify everything is functional.

    I also found a G4 Digital Audio on eBay. It has a 533 MHz single G4, 768 MB of RAM, a 30 GB hard drive, a combo optical disk, and a fresh install of OS X Tiger (10.4.11) and Classic (OS 9.2.2)... but it's much more expensive. It's $60, plus $25 in shipping from Rhode Island to Ohio.

    I was thinking I could get the one in Michigan off of Craigslist. I found 2 512 MB sticks (1 GB total) of unopened PC133 RAM for $8 shipped on eBay. I found an NVIDIA GeForce 4 MX on eBay for $20. I figured those two upgrades should give me a fairly decent system. As far as obtaining OS 9 installation media goes, I've already tracked an OS 9.2 disc down from a friend.

    Any comments, advice, and/or suggestions on this would be helpful.

    Thank you!

    William :)
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #2
    @Steve.P.JobsFan Dual CPUs do not make much of a difference in OS 9 compared to OS X unless using dual CPU aware programs like Photoshop. The GPU is the biggest clincher on gaming with these machines rather than clock speed.
     
  3. Steve.P.JobsFan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Steve.P.JobsFan

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Location:
    Cincinnati
    #3
    Yeah, I was reading online about how OS 9 doesn't really use both CPUs. Would that 450 MHz machine work well for me with a GeForce 4 MX?
     
  4. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #4
    That's a great combo. The 4MX works great under OS 9.

    I have a 450mhz Sawtooth set up as an OS 9 machine-it's fast and efficient. You can go up to 2gb of RAM with a Sawtooth, although for OS 9 and most uses, somewhere around 1gb is probably more than you need. Even so, the SD-RAM for these is cheap and I always advocate maxing out every machine. I have a Radeon 8500 in my Sawtooth which I prefer to the 4MX, although the 4MX still does really well(I have several 4MXs in service). I also have a Cube that's pretty much exclusively an OS 9 machine-it has a Sonnet 800mhz upgrade(1mb L3) and a 2MX. It's a great set up too, although I wouldn't want to tax it with heavy gaming just due to heat concerns.

    I have a couple of what I consider "killer" OS 9 machines. A couple are MDD(mirrored drive door) 2003s with single 1.25ghz processor-this is acknowledged by many as the "best" production OS 9 Machine. I also have a Digital Audio G4 with a Sonnet dual 1.8ghz upgrade. The dual 1.8 kicks butt in OS X, but as Altemose said you only get the benefit of dual processors in OS 9 with specific apps that can use both(i.e. Photoshop). In all honesty, the single 1.25 "feels" faster in real world use, although I haven't benchmarked either under OS 9. I suspect that in a benchmark, they'd actually be pretty close as 1.25ghz 7450 has 2mb L3 cache and the 7447As(which really were a laptop processor) in my Sonnet upgrade lack L3. The MDD also has a faster front side bus(167mhz vs. 133mhz).

    Both my best single 1.25 and my Sonnet upgraded DA have GEForce 4Tis in them. Keep your eyes open for this card(the Mac version) as it will work in any AGP based PM G4(except for the Cube) and is the best card available with full OS 9 compatibility. They're sometimes pricey, although I've picked up a few for $30 or so.
     
  5. MacCubed macrumors 68000

    MacCubed

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2014
    Location:
    Florida
    #5
    I have a 64 MB 4MX from a PC, is it worth flashing? I'm probably gonna get a Graphite G4 or an iMac G4 sometime this year and may use that card in the PMG4.
     
  6. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #6
    I'd suggest getting the one on Craigslist for $35.
     
  7. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #7
    Try it if you want to experiment with flashing, but honestly the Mac version is $10 or less and is also 64mb.

    I don't like flashing nVidia cards...Radeons are a piece of cake in my experience.
     
  8. Steve.P.JobsFan, Jun 27, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2015

    Steve.P.JobsFan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Steve.P.JobsFan

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Location:
    Cincinnati
    #8
    Thank you for the advice. I only see GeForce4 Ti's on eBay. I see one listing for the Mac version... $100. Yikes. (No G4 codename puns intended, LOL! :p)


    Yeah, that's what I was thinking. Going to give them a ring in the afternoon, hopefully I can swing up to Detroit and get it on Thursday since the 29th is my birthday, I'm spending the 30th celebrating my birthday, and I'm going out of state for a solo birthday trip on the 1st. :)


    I was going to ask about flashing a PC card. I found dozens on eBay for $10-20.

    EDIT: Flashing the GeForce4 is NOT possible. It would require a hardware modification.

    Also, there is the possibility of a Radeon 9800...
     
  9. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #9
    Don't get a 9600 or higher for OS 9 use. Performance under OS X is superb, but abysmal under OS 9. There are no OS 9 drivers for these cards, so there is no hardware acceleration.
     
  10. MysticCow macrumors 6502a

    MysticCow

    Joined:
    May 27, 2013
    #10
    Dual CPU's suck under OS 9. They just suck. Yes, there is an extension, but apps must take advantage of that extension to touch CPU 2.

    With all of that being said, try to find a 733 MHz Digital Audio G4. That's the one I have and it makes OS 9 scream. The bells and whistles with that processor (L3) makes up a lot for the slower clock speed.
     
  11. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #11
    I wouldn't go quite that far. In my experience, single and dual CPU versions of the same processor perform pretty much identically under OS 9. The most direct comparisons I've made are the single and dual 800mhz Quicksilver and the single and dual 1.25ghz MDD. In fact, I'd say the dual 800 Quicksilver is better thanks to the L3 cache not present on the single.

    I tend to use the single 1.25 MDDs for OS 9, but the dual 1.25 is uses the exact same CPUs(2mb L3 per processor, whether in single or dual configuration). The second one just sits idle unless I'm running Photoshop, but otherwise it being there doesn't hurt anything.
     
  12. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #12
    The 2003 MDDs with the 1.25 GHz single G4s are quite snappy under OS 9.
     
  13. Steve.P.JobsFan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Steve.P.JobsFan

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Location:
    Cincinnati
    #13
    Fun fact: Some family friend gave me a PowerMac G4 back in 2010... I was stupid and sold it to my Uncle for $80 because I was desperate for a RAM upgrade in my iMac at the time.

    It was a Dual 1.42 FW800 model like the one attached.

    Those puppies are worth a lot more than $80. Man I was stupid five years ago. -______
     

    Attached Files:

  14. Steve.P.JobsFan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Steve.P.JobsFan

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Location:
    Cincinnati
    #14
    I sent an email via Craigslist for the one in Michigan last night. No reply yet...
     
  15. eyoungren, Jun 29, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2015

    eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #15
    When I was 17 or so I had my driver's license for about a year. I had a bike laying around unused and some neighbor kids up the street came up with $25 for it. I was thinking at the time "I don't need this any more, I have a car."

    Yeah. Smart. Selling the neighbor kids a Diamondback 20" racing bike for $25. Idiot (me)!
     
  16. Langkampfen macrumors newbie

    Langkampfen

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2014
    Location:
    AL95AE
    #16
    If you come near London in GB i have a 1.42 MDD FW800, and for $80.- you get also a 1.25 Ghz FW800 and some Spare Parts (Cooper Heatsink,Cpu's and other things. :)
    Just pm me to my facebook. I dont send,but "YOU" or whoever, can send a Courier. Im running now Mac Mini 2012 and Macbook pro 2012,and havent use for it anymore.


    https://www.facebook.com/fred.kanka.5
     

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