bootable SATA II pci-x for powermac g5?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by supernova777, Apr 8, 2015.

  1. supernova777 macrumors member

    Dec 22, 2007
    i have read many threads on the net saying that there is no sata2 (300mb/s) bootable pci-x cards for the g5...

    im wondering if anyone ever figured out one that is compatible?

    i was about to hand-me-down an ssd from one of my other machines that i upgraded to my powermac g5... then i realized that it is only sata1 spec (150mb/s) and there isnt much point in putting a sataII ssd connected to a sataI interface... as the bandwidth would be half what it should be to take advantage of the ssd.

    did anyone ever figure out a card that lets u boot + still enjoy 300MB/s sata speeds?

    (hopefully equally compatible with panther aswell as tiger?)

    i was looking at this card:
    which seems to feature both SATAII + pci-x
    but it doesnt say whether or not it supports booting from attached drives and it clearly mentions it needs Tiger.. so is most likely not supported by panther.

    (please noone tell me to upgrade.. i have other machines obviously heheh but i still like to mess around with my legacy apps on my legacy g5 + old mac os x versions that some software requires)
  2. supernova777, Apr 8, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015

    supernova777 thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 22, 2007
    should i just forget about this idea... or is there anyone out there who is enjoying SATA2 (300MB/s) on their G5?? and can tell me its a worthwhile upgrade & reccommend a specific card?

    from what i can tell the Sonnet X4I is the only card? and its no longer available new, only used

    ok also the X4P

    is there a model with 2 internal 2 external? that would be perfect! (so of course it probably doesnt exist)

    is there another make/model that is identical to these two?
    (ie: sonnet's cards are usually rebranded from another manufacturer?)

    ive just noticed both the X4P and the X4i's specifications pages clearly say:
    "Bootability Not Supported"
  3. for this macrumors regular

    Nov 18, 2014
  4. MatthewLTL macrumors 68000


    Jan 22, 2015
    Rochester, MN
    I actually think you are SOL although there ARE SATA 3 compatible cards for OS X they are not bootable. The ONLY bootable cards for PowerMac are SATA 1. A SSD on the SATA 1 interface will still be supstancially faster than a mechanical HDD.
  5. for this, Apr 9, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2015

    for this macrumors regular

    Nov 18, 2014
    Although Firmtek has confusing info about this card regarding sata 1 or 2.
    I think it's sata 2 because there are more sources saying it's sata 2 and it acted like sata 2 in the review.

    This is from the card's user manual:
    "Boosts overall system performance with per-port data transfer rates of up to 300 MBytes/sec or 3.0

    "Peripherals compatible with 3Gbit/sec Serail ATA are identified as SATA-II devices in these diagnostic windows, whereas peripherals that are compatible with 1.5Gbit/sec Serial ATA transfer speeds are identified as SATA devices in these diagnostic windows."

    And this is what they say at their shop,
    "SATA II compliant, with auto-negotiation per-port data transfer of 1.5 Gbits/sec and 3.0 Gbits/sec"

    PS: I think the wording, "Fully compliant with Serial ATA 1.0a specification" is just their effort to show backward compatibility.
  6. MatthewLTL macrumors 68000


    Jan 22, 2015
    Rochester, MN
    I was meaning none of the SATA 3 cards the OP Posted were bootable. Although this card is I dont think its what the OP (or most PowerMac) users want. This has no internal ports. However if we could find out what chipset it uses Im sure an equivlent PC card WITH internal SATA could be flashed.
  7. for this macrumors regular

    Nov 18, 2014
    From a pic, it uses a Sil3124 chipset and uses a PM39LV040 rom chip.
    Yes, it's temping since I still have a couple of the ROM chips left from the previous project.

    I don't have a PC but it should be possible to do it all in the Mac by using an Sil3112/3512 card as a medium for the WiebeTech flasher, then transfer the ROM chip to a generic Sil3124 card. But I'm not so eager to do though, since it has no added benefit for what I do.
  8. supernova777, Apr 17, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2015

    supernova777 thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 22, 2007

    forthis is right
    that card seems to be the only one in existance that supports sata2 + bootability.

    im surprised that noone else has been worried about trying to flash any sil3124 cards with the 2se4 rom to get SATA2 on powermac g5s..
    they may be outdated but they are cheap as hell now (almost free)
    and some of them still have usable benchmarks in the 3000 range (geekbench)

    why wouldnt we want sata300 disk speed with an old g5;)

    yes theres no internal ports and u would have to use it with an external enclosure
    but it also supports port multiplier, so u could have a dual enclosure with 2-4 SSD's in raid
    and still boot!!!!!!!! that might be worth the inconvenience of having to find an enclosure
    i know i have at least one spare esata enclosure kicking around..


    re: the sonnet card with the 4 internal ports..
    its compatible with pcs.. i wonder if its also nonbootable with pcs?

    if it is bootable with pcs. i wonder if this card is bootable with intel based hackintosh? and if it might be bootable there?? its definately the mac g5 that poses the bootability special case scenario where it needs to inject kext files to the os from the rom to enable boot.. then again whether its bootable with intel hackintosh.. thats a moot pt because theres no problem getting sata2 + sata3 adapters + motherboards ..derp ;)

    if anyone out there with a chip programmer wants to try this
    thers a number of cards for very little cash on ebay with pre-existing rom chip sockets
    which would require no soldering to remove the rom chip + replace with the exact same rom chip
    and the cards use the same chipset as the above seritek card and the seritek rom is posted publicly on their site free for anyone to download (i can provide a link)
    and they of course feature internal sata ports x 4

    this would allow mac g5 users to take full advantage of the pci-x bandwidth in combination with the sata2 spec .. which would allow for a theoretical throughput exceeding 800mbs if used in the 133mhz slot.. 800 if used in a 100mhz slot.. (g5 pci-x has different speed slots, 1x100, 1x133 etc)

    this has the potential for worthwhile gains above the default sata1 ports especially when used in raid
    would allow a g5 user to get the full speed of an ssd drive instead of it being crippled to 150mb/s sata150 spec by the sata1 port

    i think this would be a tremendous victory for legacy powerpc users if successful!!

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