G3 iMac for $45 Worth it?

Bloo Ice

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 4, 2005
121
0
Kansas
Hi. First post here! I currently use XP, and nothing but XP. I've never been against mac, and used OS X at school the other day. I'm a sucker for the eye-candy. Love it! Instantly I wanted a mac. But, unlike most people here, I'm poor. I can't just go out and spend hundreds of dollars. So, I did what I do best, search on eBay for something cheap. I saw a G3 iMac for $45, after shipping. [yeah, now someone will go snatch it up that I've provided the link]. I don't know jack squat about macs, and am wondering if this is a good deal. I don't plan to do much, just set it out and have it look nice, some web surfing, IMing, and word processing. Not a whole lot. And maybe play some music, but that's all I'm really interested in. That one has OS 9, and I looked around and have seen Tiger for about $70. IF that one is good, and IF I got it, would it be able to run Tiger nice and smoothly? Thanks!!!
 

macbaseball

macrumors 6502a
Feb 27, 2005
988
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Northern California
I agree. I used to have one and I also got rid of it for about $40 bucks. It's pretty much useless, unless you run OS 9. You will be disappointed. I would save your money and get a eMac, as they are relatively cheap. Look them up on eBay. I search and found several for well under the price of a Mac Mini. One of those with enough RAM will run Tiger just fine.
 

zach

macrumors 65816
Feb 14, 2003
1,205
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Medford
I concur. If you really want a mac cheap, buy a new or used eMac: it's by far the best apple value (the Mac mini is simply an attractive price point, after all the stuff you need for it the price ends up quite high, the eMac is 100% ready to go out of the box).

If you're lucky, you probably can get like a 600 MHz G3 eMac for a couple hundred bucks.. Even that's somewhat lackluster, I'd go for a G4, but if you don't wanna spend much..

<edit> haha, macbaseball posted basically the same thing as me at the same time </edit>
 

Bloo Ice

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 4, 2005
121
0
Kansas
Thanks for all of your quick replies! I'll look for some relatively cheap eMacs, but its the whole poor student thing that keeps me back....argh! Is it possible to build one, like you can build a PC?
 

macbaseball

macrumors 6502a
Feb 27, 2005
988
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Northern California
dornoforpyros said:
45 bucks? whatta have to lose?
I get what you're saying, but what are you going to do with that machine. OS 9 is 5 releases ago. I tried running 10.2 on a Bondi Blue iMac and it was really slow. i can't even imagine what it would be like with Dashboard and other things like that taking up speed and RAM.
 

e²Studios

macrumors 68020
Apr 12, 2005
2,104
5
macbaseball said:
I get what you're saying, but what are you going to do with that machine. OS 9 is 5 releases ago. I tried running 10.2 on a Bondi Blue iMac and it was really slow. i can't even imagine what it would be like with Dashboard and other things like that taking up speed and RAM.

I have a G3 500 DV SE Graphite iMac with 512mb of ram and it runs 10.3.8 just fine :) For basic browsing, email, IM, even some basic PS stuff it works fine. Mind you it isn't a speed demon, but it gets the job done. That said i wouldn't touch a iMac unless it was a slot loading model, they seem to handle OS X better. (be sure to run the firmware update BEFORE installing OS X on one of them)

I am currently debating selling said iMac, though i figure it is probably still worth 250-300 ish.. i think..

Ed
 

Capt Underpants

macrumors 68030
Jul 23, 2003
2,859
3
Austin, Texas
Bloo Ice said:
Thanks for all of your quick replies! I'll look for some relatively cheap eMacs, but its the whole poor student thing that keeps me back....argh! Is it possible to build one, like you can build a PC?
It's actually more expensive to buid a mac then to buy it from apple :eek:
 

Jigglelicious

macrumors 6502
Apr 25, 2004
421
0
NYC
If you're going to get an iMac, make sure you get a slot loading 400mhz or higher model, and don't pay more than $100 or so for it. Stick in 512mb of RAM and a new 7200rpm hard drive, and it will be surprisingly usable. No it won't be super fast, and things like expose will be choppy. But it would be a very usable mac for around $200 if you play your cards right. Of course, the best thing to do would be to pick up one of those refurb eMacs for around $500 from the Apple Store - it would be several times faster than any G3 iMac.

Don't even bother with a tray loading model. They are very slow, need laptop ram, and are far less upgradeable.
 

Bloo Ice

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 4, 2005
121
0
Kansas
dornoforpyros said:
45 bucks? whatta have to lose?
Bloo Ice said:
But, unlike most people here, I'm poor.
I'm not rich!! Heck, after the bills get paid, I barely have any money left [countable in Washingtons]. And, I just finished building my new PC. I've got some old computers, but they arent worth much. I could sell my Tablet PC, but it wouldn't bring much now, being 2 years old and just a TC1000, and I don't want to part with it.

The computer I used I think was a iMac DV?? It had a slot loading drive, and ran OS X just fine. I used iMovie on it, and it ran fairly well. It grabbed the video off of the DV camera just fine, and put it back to it fine as well. It had the little button-less all clear mouse, the one that kinda looks like a clear pill, and a matching keyboard. I think it was blue, but can't remember.
 

Lancetx

macrumors 68000
Aug 11, 2003
1,977
585
Texas
Don't forget that there is always the Mac mini too. There aren't too many used/refurb ones out there yet since they're so new, but I'm sure there will be soon enough. Of course a brand new one with Tiger already included is only $499 (or just $479 with your EDU discount). ;)
 

Bloo Ice

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 4, 2005
121
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Kansas
Still, quite a lot of money. If I do get one, it definately won't be new, unless apple has a 80% off sale ;)
 

flyguy451

macrumors regular
May 3, 2005
137
0
I think you guys are way off on this one. I have a perfectly functioning 333mhz G3 with 168 meg of RAM running 8.6. Yes, it's a tray loader too. Web browsing, email, limewire all work just fine. Just so you know I'm not a Luddite, I also have a 12" 1.5 Powerbook. There's lots of life left in those old iMacs, assuming you don't plan on doing graphics or video intensive applications.
 

macbaseball

macrumors 6502a
Feb 27, 2005
988
0
Northern California
flyguy451 said:
I think you guys are way off on this one. I have a perfectly functioning 333mhz G3 with 168 meg of RAM running 8.6. Yes, it's a tray loader too. Web browsing, email, limewire all work just fine. Just so you know I'm not a Luddite, I also have a 12" 1.5 Powerbook. There's lots of life left in those old iMacs, assuming you don't plan on doing graphics or video intensive applications.
He wants to have Tiger ... he doesn't want to run an older OS and old applications.
 

flyguy451

macrumors regular
May 3, 2005
137
0
macbaseball said:
He wants to have Tiger ... he doesn't want to run an older OS and old applications.
Yes, he said he wants Tiger but he also said he's only planning to use it for surfing, IM and word processing. Aside from running Tiger an old iMac could do a fine job for him - that's my point. I took a look at the ebay link and I saw that the iMac he was considering was a 266 G3 with 32 meg of RAM however so this one might be a little too light for the job.
 

brandon6684

Guest
Dec 30, 2002
538
0
Apple's online store has refurbished iMac G5s for as low as $899. And they may not be so much refurbished as left over stock and just being sold a refurbished.
 

auxplage

macrumors 6502
Nov 11, 2004
331
1
Virginia Beach
zach said:
I concur. If you really want a mac cheap, buy a new or used eMac: it's by far the best apple value (the Mac mini is simply an attractive price point, after all the stuff you need for it the price ends up quite high, the eMac is 100% ready to go out of the box).

If you're lucky, you probably can get like a 600 MHz G3 eMac for a couple hundred bucks.. Even that's somewhat lackluster, I'd go for a G4, but if you don't wanna spend much..

<edit> haha, macbaseball posted basically the same thing as me at the same time </edit>
The lowest spec eMac was a 700mhz G4.
 

x86isslow

macrumors 6502a
Aug 10, 2003
889
10
USA
the last G3 iMac was a 600mhz "Snow". it looks similar enough to the eMac to be confused with one ;)


to the thread starter: if you have a steady job, you might look into monthly payment plans, which would put new computers within reach. i'd suggest the low-end eMac. Its a complete system, unlike the mini, and it has a modern graphics card, while the mini has the aging 9200.
 

Bloo Ice

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 4, 2005
121
0
Kansas
I don't plan on using it enough to justify getting a new one. Maybe later down the road I will, but for now, I'd just like a cheap one, preferably under 2 or 3 hundred. Back to eBay! Thanks for all your help!!
 

TLRedhawke

macrumors 6502
Sep 17, 2004
351
0
I bought a G3 iMac (333MHz, the last of the tray loaders) for my parents. It cost me about $160 Canadian after shipping, and I sunk an extra $60 to bump the ram up to 160MB. I tossed Panther on it, and my parents absolutely love it. My mother is the only one that really uses it, and she only required that she be able to send email with it. However, since getting it for her, I've turned her on to iPhoto and digital photography, and the machine still chugs along just fine. Expose is a bit choppy at times, but considering that they never have enough windows open to notice it, it's only an issue when I need to use the machine.

The point is, a G3 iMac is still a fairly nice little machine, and it's a good one to "get your feet wet" with the Mac platform. And, as someone said before, for $45, you can't go wrong. Hell, I just bought a Beige G3 for $20 because it was a good deal. I don't need it, as I've got a bajillion machines running in my apartment, but I couldn't turn it down. While I would certainly suggest spending as much as you can afford for a much better Mac, there's nothing wrong with the G3 iMac, especially for that price. And who knows, when you upgrade eventually, that G3 iMac could go to a younger sibling, or a neighbour, and it would start them down the Mac path.

eMacs are good, as are G4/G5 iMacs, and Mac minis, but they can't be had at anywhere near the price range that you could get a G3 iMac for. If you're poor, and don't need a powerful Mac (ie. You're not a graphic design student, or anything like that) what does it hurt to spend $45 on it? Forego the pub crawl for one night, and you've made the money back. Hell, you could spend that night playing with the iMac, installing OS X, and downloading apps that you like. In general, it's not the greatest Mac, but it's one hell of a good deal. You may not be satisfied with it as a primary machine forever, but by then, the prices on everything else will have come down as well. It doesn't hurt to have more than one Mac or PC. My apartment is a testament to that. As such, why turn down a good deal just because you could get more by spending more?
 

Bloo Ice

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 4, 2005
121
0
Kansas
So should I get it or not?

Edit: Checked back...its sold already. If anyone here has an old mac they dont want...and dont want much money for it...I'd gladly take it off your hands ;)
 

ReanimationLP

macrumors 68030
Jan 8, 2005
2,765
25
On the moon.
Stay away from the 233s, they give horrible performance in OSX. Spring for a 333 MHz trayloader with at LEAST 256 MB of RAM, 6 MB VRAM, and an upgraded HD, or just jump straight for the slot loaders. Trust me, your talking to a guy who actually RAN Panther on a 233 MHz. So slow.