G4 Digital Audio Sonnet Upgrade

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by benwild_33, Mar 17, 2017.

  1. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #26
    GeForce 4TI is the fastest card that provides acceleration in Mac OS 9 (it will boot with a newer card installed, but won't run most games without acceleration). However, in Mac OS 9 there isn't much of a difference between the 4TI and 4MX (even the newer Mac OS 9 games/apps were released at a time when it was important they run well on a Rage 128 Pro or GeForce 2MX, let alone a 4MX, and the OS itself as well). In Mac OS X there is a slight difference, but not huge.
     
  2. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #27
    I didn't realise that OS9 would still run with a newer card. I guess the UI in OS9 doesn't use any GPU acceleration either. Tiger is pretty laggy with the rage 128 and I haven't even got anything installed. I think I'm gonna pick up a Radeon 9650 and see where I get, worst case scenario I can just sell it and get something else. I might consider buying a 4 mx too just because they are only £15.

    I've got a new PRAM battery in the post too which should get rid of the annoying clock messages and hopefully make OS9 a bit more reliable at booting.

    Thanks for all the help with this, I've got so many things I want to buy now! I want to try and fully spec the digital Audio, I'm on the lookout for a cheap zip drive too just because I may as well fill the slot in the case.
     
  3. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #28
    Always good to replace that but just want to mention that it's not necessary - at least in OS X.

    In the Date & Time panel in System Preferences if you select a time server and then check the box to update time and date automatically the Mac will keep the time and date as long as you do not disconnect the Mac from power. And assuming you have it on your home network with external access to the internet.

    Every Mac I own is on 24/7 but I know that the average person usually shuts their computer down when they are done with it. But even shut off the Mac will keep the time if you don't pull the power cord.

    Just commenting, not saying you shouldn't replace the battery.
     
  4. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #29
    Yeah I hadn't through of checking that, I was a little worried about the current one leaking too as I guess it's the original.
     
  5. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #30
    So I got my Radeon 9650 today and I've taped pins 3 and 11 but I'm getting no video but it does chime. If I put the rage 128 back in, that works, the 9650 was sold as being a working card but I have nothing else to test it in. It is the oem card from a G5. I'm running 10.4.11. Any ideas? I'll get some pictures up tomorrow.
     
  6. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #31
    Well I tried again tonight but still no luck;

    The two cards above each other;
    [​IMG]

    Pins Taped off using scotch tape, only covering this side;
    [​IMG]

    Booted up, no video, you can hear it booting in the background and if I press the keyboard I hear system sounds. If I put the Rage 128 back in it works fine. I've tried re-taping the pins but that hasn't helped. I tried without the tape (I was getting desperate) but that made the mac do a sad chime and then after that it wouldn't do anything if I pressed the power button. Putting the Rage 128 back in got it going again.

    I have absolutely no way to test if its actually a working card, I'm kicking myself really as I've sold 3 G5s over the last 2 weeks, at least one of which would have been perfect for testing this card with. I'm not sure I'd want to return it to the seller either as I'd feel bad if I had damaged it.

    Anyone got any ideas? I know the 9650 isn't a card that has really been documented as being used in a G4 so maybe it's just incompatible.
     
  7. ziggy29, Mar 28, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017

    ziggy29 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2014
    Location:
    Texas
    #32
    That's a tough one. It's hard to tell, as you say, whether the problem is with the taped "fix" for a G4 with 4x AGP or if the card is just no good (assuming it was properly seated, et cetera).

    One thing I will caution on, and I've recently noted it in another thread, is that a Digital Audio with a CPU upgrade and a top-tier (i.e. hot) GPU is very likely to cause an otherwise stock G4DA system a great deal of, shall we say, thermal distress. Those GPUs belch out a lot of heat AND they have a larger form factor, substantially hampering air flow in a case design that already had bad airflow to begin with. Mine has an OWC 1.467 GHz G4 CPU and 1.5 GB of RAM.

    I'm going to add a stronger fan to mine for now as a cheap attempt to make it better, but I can't use my 4Ti 4600 or a taped-up FireGL for more than a few minutes with the door closed without a lockup or other "you must restart" message. As of now, a GeForce 4MX (64 MB VRAM) works fine in it, but the others are just too much heat. It might be a good and cheap "happy medium" between a slowpoke Rage 128 and constant crashes because of overheating. For the most part, it runs Tiger and Leopard fine, I just can't do much with video playback on it like I could the faster ones (with the side door open).
     
  8. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #33
    I think I may have figured it out, whilst browsing some random really old forum about using radeon 9600s in G4s I found a lot of people were having the same issue as me with 9600Pros with a later ROM revision on them, in their cases they were able to flash back to an earlier ROM and that got them working. I'm guessing the 9650 is a later card as it came out for use with the 30" Cinema Display. I'm doubtful I'll find an earlier ROM and a standard 9600 ROM would probably break the dual link DVI. I'm not giving up yet, I'll keep seeing what I can find.

    On the subject of cooling the 9650 would have been ok, it seems to run really cool. I may look in to a different card though so will keep cooling in mind when looking.
     
  9. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #34
    Just some quick info, I don't have the time I wish I had.

    regarding the SATA card you were linkd to. This card is compatible, but you can't boot from it. I have a very similar one and recomended these to others on the forum. The one in th elink has PCI (35MB/s max speed),the one I use is pretty much the same, but has PCI-X (PCI-X, not to be confused with PCIe. PCI-X is backwards compatible), max speed is 65MB/s.
    It is actually not that special card, it is the chipset that makes it compatible. EVERY card that has the Silicon Image SIL3124 chip is compatible. You might even find one for 10 bucks. You just need to download drivers from here http://www.drivers-download.com/en/downloadlist.php?id=72 and install them. No flashing needed. (However you can make it bootable by flashing the ROM of a Sonnet or Firmtec SATA card to it).

    Regarding video cards. Have you looked at the compatibility list of AGP cards http://themacelite.wikidot.com/compatibility (although it might not be complete). There are also ROMs and a buying guide and info on the taping on this site.
    Also, look into the lists that japamac has done http://www.jcsenterprises.com/Japamacs_Page/Blog/8923D90A-7AD8-41F1-BD1A-FEA5E1780B95.html 1st page OS9 compatible, 2nd page OS X, 3rd page PCIe cards (for late2005 G5s only).

    If you are interested in flashing you might find the guides on cubeowner interesting (only accessable via waybackmachine):
    The good is they list several different methods (via VPN, via OS X, via OS 9, via Windows, etc.)
    - Instructions For Flashing Pc Video Cards, Series 1, Eg. Radeon 7000 - 9100 AGP https://web.archive.org/web/20151004111142/http://www.cubeowner.com/forums//index.php?showtopic=8798
    - Series 2, e.g. ATI 9200 https://web.archive.org/web/20070406172510/http://www.cubeowner.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=8806
    - series 3, e.g. ATI 9800 https://web.archive.org/web/20080325125108/http://www.cubeowner.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=8804
    - Series 4, Nvidia https://web.archive.org/web/20071102132347/http://www.cubeowner.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=8807

    additional files https://web.archive.org/web/20080218021238/http://cubeowner.com/kbase_2/?page=index_v2&id=265&c=2
     
  10. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #35
    Cheers I had been looking at getting a SATA card to flash as I have an SSD sat on my desk doing nothing. I need to sort a working video card first though. I'm not in any huge hurry, I'm not trying any other 9600s, a 9800 is tempting but would run hot with the sonnet CPU and they cost a bit more than I'd rather spend. I'll probably end up getting the Geforce 4MX that I'm watching on ebay, it should do the job, I'll need a monitor too but it has ADC so I can pick up a Studio Display if I find one cheaply.
     
  11. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #36
    They also require additional power via a spare Molex cable. Probably not worth it.
     
  12. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #37
    On Ebay you can set automatic alerts. In the Computer category aearch for "ADC converter", "ADC connector" and "ADC adapter" "apple conector" etc. and check the box that says "email alert me" or something like this. This will give you the option to hunt an adapter down, without dong much, while you are waiting for a good graphics card deal. The adapter will widen your choice of displays.

    I don't know, do both DVI or VGA ports work on flashed cards? I am not really into GPUs anymore or atm, but what cards would give you two ports without ADC? I remember user Supernova had a list on OS 9 lves forums.

    I remember there was one card shipping with the G4 PowerMacs that was first available with ADC/VGA and then with VGA/DVI. Could it have been the 2MX or 4MX?

    Oh, I just remembered the following link. It doesn't show all, but gives another view at the cards: http://www.welovemacs.com/apvica1.html (Though the AGP G5 section has an ATI 9800 and it is not listed in the G4 section, though we know it is compatible).
    (it seems the non-ADC cards are rare and special BTO ones).
     
  13. KawaiiAurora macrumors 6502

    KawaiiAurora

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    Europa
    #38
    I got a PC 9700 for a good price and flashed it on my Mac via VNC. If you fancy flashing cards, go for it ;) 9500s are also quite good. 9800s are nice too but yeah, heat..
     
  14. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #39
    I won a Formac Gallery 2010 on ebay for £5 on ebay yesterday. Its in silver so should look devent next to my Cinema Display. I'm picking it up on my way back from Scotland next week. I'll plug it in to my KVM so that it can be shared between my G4 and Mac Pro. In terms of GPUs I'm going to go for something that won't put out too much heat, the Radeon 9700 sounds good but they seem pretty rare. I'm also looking at the Geforce 6200, they're newer so should run cooler, there seem to be AGP4x compatible versions too. I'll have to flash it via VNC viewer.

    I'm also going to swap out my exhaust fan, I have a Scythe Gentle Typhoon 1850rpm fan left over from my old PC, these are really quiet but have a really good static pressure, should be a nice improvement over the very loud stock fan that is in there (suspected bad bearings).
     
  15. KawaiiAurora macrumors 6502

    KawaiiAurora

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    Europa
    #40
    As per the readme of the Nvidia Flash Tool for Mac, you can't flash PC cards via VNC (didn't work for me so yeah..). You may flash PC ATI cards on a Mac via VNC but be careful as a wrong ROM will force you to use a PC. I flashed an R9700 on a Mac via VNC and it went perfectly fine. If you have any concerns or something you're not 100% in regards to the flashing process, send me a PM by all means! I can give ya the exact procedure in detail if ya want
     
  16. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #41
    So it's about time I updated this thread.

    I've been buying a lot of parts over the last few weeks all to allow me to flash a GPU to run in my G4, first of all was my GPU flashing rig, may I present the trusty Dell Dimension 4600 purchased for £7, I chose this as it had an AGP port as well as a floppy drive.
    [​IMG]
    I later found the floppy drive was dead. I had no luck flashing from CD-ROM (NVFlash kept crashing) so I had a look online and found someone throwing out some old computer bits including a couple of towers with floppy drives. Went and picked them up (free), they had been sat under a lean to shelter by the side of a house and thus smelt a bit 'swampy'. I decided not to power them up but removed all the parts apart from the power supplies and took the cases to the dump. Got some other bits from them that will be going in the G4 but I'll talk about them another time. Anyway the floppy drives from these worked perfectly so I put one in the Dell Dimension and got going with the flashing.

    Anyway I hadn't even mentioned what I was flashing, I got a PNY Geforce 6200 AGP 256mb off ebay for £5, I had somehow decided in my head it looks similar enough to the XFX one so I could clearly use the XFX Mac rom I downloaded. Picture below mid flashing, the Dell wasn't connected up to my network so I was using my Thinkpad to download everything.
    [​IMG]

    Taped up pins 3&11 on the 6200 and put it in to my G4, moment of tru....uh oh.....that didnt go quite as planned, my PNY card clearly didnt like the XFX bios, I kept the original bios so I'll have to flash it back to stock at some point.
    [​IMG]

    At this point I wasnt too sure what to do, my living room looked like a bomb full of early 2000s graphics cards had gone off, I had the cards below left over from the Dell and the other PCs I got:
    Radeon 9250 256mb (couldnt find a mac bios)
    Radeon 9650 (G5) (Dell wont display any video with it, probably as its a mac card)
    Geforce 4 MX 420 (from the Dell)
    Radeon 7000 PCI
    [​IMG]

    I went with the Radeon 7000 as at this point I just wanted something that would output DVI to run my Formac 2010 (Rage 128s DVI doesnt work). Flashed the bios with atiflash, worked first time!!
    [​IMG]

    So now was the moment of truth, does the DVI work?[​IMG]
    YES!!!!!!!!!!!

    Decided to upgrade the annoyingly loud stock fan with a Scythe Gentle Typhoon AP-15 I had lying around. Soldered on the original Mac connector.[​IMG]
    I'll keep the stock fan for if I ever need to go back to it.

    Celebratory run of GeekBench, not sure if this score is actually any good;[​IMG]

    So thats where I'm up to for now, changing a graphics card has never been so stressful and I now have tons of excess hardware. The radeon 7000 isn't going to remain as the main GPU as it isn't much faster than the Rage 128 but it'll do for now and I'll probably leave it in as a secondary GPU. Not sure what to go with from here, I'd like something with a bit of power that is known to work in the digital audio.
     
  17. mode11 macrumors member

    mode11

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    Location:
    London
    #42
    I bought a 9800pro 128MB for my MDD Dual for £10 on eBay, then flashed it in a spare PC. Runs like sh*t off a shovel - Quake 3 (in OS X Leopard) was pushing 90fps at 1080p if I remember correctly. No apparent issues with heat, but then they're not called windtunnel G4s for nothing... Could always install a PCI slot blower in your DA, though, or even find a 9800 with an IceQ blower pre-attached.
     
  18. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #43
    9800s do look like a good cheap option although I am aware I would likely have heat issues in a digital audio, I do have a pci slot fan sat around somewhere. I guess I'd also be pushing the power supply a bit more although I think this mac has lived a fairly easy life so far it was really clean inside when I got it.
     
  19. mode11 macrumors member

    mode11

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    Location:
    London
    #44
    How about one of these: http://www.hisdigital.com/gb/product2-217.shtml?

    I think people overstate the heat / power of these old cards. They typically have piddly little heatsinks compared to modern cards, so can't be that monstrous.
     
  20. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #45
    Yeah I've seen a couple of these come up, they do look decent.
     
  21. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #46
    As great as the 9800 is, as far as I remember flashed ones are not fully supporting HW acceleration in OS9 (just like the flashed 9000 and 9200 doesn't).


    PS: here is a "shopping list" of 9800s and other cards with pictures to identify them and naming each their advantages and disadvantages http://themacelite.wikidot.com/ati-radeon
     
  22. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #47
    I know I'm late to this thread, but I thought I'd drop in.

    It looks like you've completely ruled out the flashed FireGL X3. That was a good idea. I've had a couple of them, and have exactly one that works in the DA/QS computers. It's the exception rather than the rule-I bought already installed in someone else's DA built(2ghz 7448, Sonnet SATA, a few other goodies) and it works. Otherwise, G5s and MDDs are the only pretty well guaranteed options for this card.

    In my experience, the 9600 and 9650(regular versions) are dead-on reliable when taped in DAs and QSs, although they won't work in 2x AGP slots.
     
  23. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #48
    Luckily I have the Radeon 7000 pci that I will be able to leave in for OS9 now
    --- Post Merged, May 6, 2017 ---
    The flashed FireGL/x800/x850 all look a little expensive anyway and would likely be overkill for anything I do. I may have a look at getting another 9600 as they are cheap and cheerful, no idea why my 9650 won't work in anything, I was tempted to try and flash it to the pc&mac edition bios but it would have to be a blind flash and I don't even know if my flashing pc will detect it
     
  24. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #49
    The 9600XT is a great option.

    I have a couple of the 9600 PC&Mac editions, and I rather like them for use in G4s. I've never had one fail to work in a QS or DA, and they can be modified to provide ADC power in a G4. My main PPC set-up for a while(before transitioning to the dual 2.7 G5) was a Quicksilver with one of these cards so modified.

    I'd avoid even using the PC&Mac edition ROM. For one thing, those cards are known to be touchy in QS/DAs, and ATI even quit listing them as a compatible model after reports were coming in. I have two and they work fine in QSs, but there's no guarantee of them working. Also, despite the huge amount of VRAM compared to the 9600/9650, they are actually slower clocked and I suspect that if you were pushing one you'd be happier with the 9600.

    The only real reason I see for using a PC&Mac edition is if you want to run a 30" cinema or other high-res display.
     
  25. benwild_33 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    #50
    Ok will have a look for a 9600XT then. In other news I just bought a Sonnet Tempo ATA133 IDE PCI card off ebay, it was £16 which i thought was a decent price and it has come from a working environment so should be plug and play in my G4. The reason for buying this was I got a few IDE drives in the free computer parts I got the other week including a 250GB WD drive so this should let me use that. I may also set up my boot drive as raid WD800 80GB drives as I have two.
     

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