G4/400 - Any point in upgrading?

ziwi

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 6, 2004
1,087
0
Right back where I started...
If I were able to get the old g4/400 tower gratis and pop in a processor upgrade is it worth it? Or would what I could do with this upgraded tower be moot with a mini? Granted the mini would be a little bit more $$ than a proc upgrade and new HD in the old tower. Just curious. Thanks.
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,922
169
If you get the Mac for free, then an upgrade card & new HD* is well worth it. Sonnet seem to have the best press for their processor upgrade cards.


*note that the HD size limit is 128gb unless you install a ATA PCI card like the Sonnet Tempo.
 

slipper

macrumors 68000
Nov 19, 2003
1,542
32
it really depends on what you will be using your computer for. i think most people would benefit more from a mac mini. i would prefer the tower instead for use as a file server.
 

Norouzi

macrumors 6502
Aug 6, 2004
395
14
Philadelphia, PA
Personally, I still use a PM G4 450. I've upgraded the hard drive, video card, and installed a DVD burner, and I'd still rather shell out the dollars for a new processor than buy a mini. I may be in the minority, but I prefre having the option to upgrade than buying a machine that will be all it is and nothing more.
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,089
4
Sol III - Terra
Two benefits I can see from buying a Mac Mini:
  1. You get the latest software (Mac OS X, iLife).
  2. You get a system with a warranty. You don't know how long a power supply (for instance) is going to last in an old system.
 

tweakers_suck

macrumors regular
Feb 7, 2005
221
0
Los Angeles, CA
Upgrade will be fine for many apps.

I chose to updgrade my G4 400 with an OWC 1.0 GHz upgrade card. It works great. I also added a dvd burner and now I can use iDVD - that's all I wanted additionally out of my computer. Still runs like a champ!
 

MarkCollette

macrumors 68000
Mar 6, 2003
1,555
32
Toronto, Canada
ziwi said:
If I were able to get the old g4/400 tower gratis and pop in a processor upgrade is it worth it? Or would what I could do with this upgraded tower be moot with a mini? Granted the mini would be a little bit more $$ than a proc upgrade and new HD in the old tower. Just curious. Thanks.
My view is, get the mac mini, and have access to all the new software, and USB 2.0 ports.

Leave the G4 400 for someone else, who won't need to upgrade it, to benefit from it.
 

MacAztec

macrumors 68040
Oct 28, 2001
3,023
1
San Luis Obispo, CA
Stay with the PowerMac...

USB2.0/Firewire PCI Card = $45.00
DVD-Burner (16x) = $75.00
OWC 1GHz Upgrade (2MB L3 Cache) = $180.00
Radeon 9600 Pro = $100

So for under $400, you have a machine that will be faster than the Mac mini. The L3 cache really helps, and the 9600Pro will REALLY help out. If you want, get another hard drive, and an ATA card.
 

jefhatfield

Retired
Jul 9, 2000
8,803
0
MarkCollette said:
My view is, get the mac mini, and have access to all the new software, and USB 2.0 ports.

Leave the G4 400 for someone else, who won't need to upgrade it, to benefit from it.
even though the early g4 400 tower can be upgraded and used easily with osx, the mini, for the money, is clearly the better deal

usb 2.0 is a luxury but soon will be a necessity if computer hardware history is any indicator

i had a friend who had the perfect windows 95a os in his favorite machine and he was more than happy with his parallel and serial port accessories...he only had a keyboard and his computer did not facilitate the use of a mouse but he knew his way around very well and thought he had a computer which would last him the rest of his life

...but when usb came out, along with usb mouses, it was only for "some" peripherals/computers and he didn't think it would catch on so he just went about his merry way...but soon usb pretty much replaced serial and parallel and he found himself completely obsolete

note at the time serial and parallel port peripherals seemed really fast and state of the art and windows 95a (which doesn't support usb) was a major upgrade to windows 3.1

one can say all the bad things about usb 2.0 being intel and not apple inc. but computer hardware peripheral makers will comply with the usb 2.0 standard and will eventually oust the usb 1.x devices
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,089
4
Sol III - Terra
jefhatfield said:
...
one can say all the bad things about usb 2.0 being intel and not apple inc. but computer hardware peripheral makers will comply with the usb 2.0 standard and will eventually oust the usb 1.x devices
Actually USB 2.0 Full Speed is the same as USB 1.1. USB 2.0 High Speed is the 480Mb/s.

So you have people saying their devices are USB 2.0 Full Speed and you think you're getting something fast. Talk about misleading. USB 2.0 High Speed is what you want for certain devices that require fast speed... disk drives, scanners, and printers. (Especially photo prointers that get a lot of data dumped at them.)
 

iN8

macrumors regular
May 29, 2002
151
0
The Bahamas
MacAztec said:
Stay with the PowerMac...

USB2.0/Firewire PCI Card = $45.00
DVD-Burner (16x) = $75.00
OWC 1GHz Upgrade (2MB L3 Cache) = $180.00
Radeon 9600 Pro = $100

So for under $400, you have a machine that will be faster than the Mac mini. The L3 cache really helps, and the 9600Pro will REALLY help out. If you want, get another hard drive, and an ATA card.
Actually, I don't think the 9600Pro works with the Sawtooth G4. You can use the 9000Pro though for $127, but the ADC doesn't work.
 

Demon Hunter

macrumors 68020
Mar 30, 2004
2,284
39
iN8 said:
Actually, I don't think the 9600Pro works with the Sawtooth G4. You can use the 9000Pro though for $127, but the ADC doesn't work.
This is correct. Sawtooth doesn't support the 4x AGP bus that is minimum... the 9600 is actually an 8x card that is modified to work at 4x.
 
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