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Alex_K

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2019
33
90
My G5 Quad - which I bought second hand three years ago to play high-end PowerPC games - had become increasingly temperamental; random freezes, kernal panics, loud fans. It would work fine if I didn't do anything taxing but as soon as I loaded up a JS-heavy website or 3D game, it would crash and the fans would go into overdrive. Then, in order to boot up again, I'd have to open it up and reset the SMC and then reset the PRAM.

I've not spotted any leaks but I suspect the water cooling system was beginning to fail.

Wasn't much fun using it anymore. Thankfully, I had an almost-forgotten Dual core 2.3GHz G5 in storage in our under-the-stairs cupboard. Switched the memory and hard drive over, and everything is working beautifully. Now, the Quad's long neglected sibling is the star of my PowerPC collection, while the former headliner is reduced to sharing space with cobwebs in the cupboard.

Won't forget it though.
 

repairedCheese

macrumors 6502a
Jan 13, 2020
584
769
It's sad to hear a titan like that need to get retired, but I do feel I need to ask, did you ever redo the thermal paste on the system? Because as much as it could be the pump failing, it could always be something simpler.
 

Alex_K

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2019
33
90
It's sad to hear a titan like that need to get retired, but I do feel I need to ask, did you ever redo the thermal paste on the system? Because as much as it could be the pump failing, it could always be something simpler.
I haven't redone the thermal paste. To be honest, I am a bit scared of doing it. I am not very skilled at computer repairs and have broken a few electronic devices with my ineptness. I have replaced a few hard drives in powerbooks but that is about the extent of my successes. Maybe I should have a go at repasting the CPU but maybe also I shouldn't put the old beast through the pain of me doing that!
 
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TheShortTimer

macrumors 65816
Mar 27, 2017
1,414
2,440
London, UK
I haven't redone the thermal paste. To be honest, I am a bit scared of doing it. I am not very skilled at computer repairs and have broken a few electronic devices with my ineptness. I have replaced a few hard drives in powerbooks but that is about the extent of my successes. Maybe I should have a go at repasting the CPU but maybe also I shouldn't put the old beast through the pain of me doing that!
I understand that fear only too well. I've got soldering work that I've avoiding doing because I'm scared of doing more harm than good. If you're not too confident at tackling the repaste - is there someone else that you could enlist to do it for you? :)
 
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Alex_K

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2019
33
90
I understand that fear only too well. I've got soldering work that I've avoiding doing because I'm scared of doing more harm than good. If you're not too confident at tackling the repaste - is there someone else that you could enlist to do it for you? :)
Glad it is not just me!

Afraid, don't know anyone nearby who'd be able to do the repasting for me. But no worries. This has given me a chance to play with the 2.3GHz dual core. And I am already enjoying it a as much as the quad - it seems really stable. The fans are pretty quiet. And there is less chance of it burning the house down from a leaking-coolant-caused short circuit. I can't detect a significant drop in speed, either.

I was always planning to move over to the 2.3GHz Dual Core at some point, anyway, as I knew the water cooling system in the Quad was going to fail sometime. And I certainly don't have the skills or patience to repair that. When I have a bigger computer room, I might get the Quad out again and have a go at repasting.
 
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dmr727

macrumors G3
Dec 29, 2007
9,358
1,866
NYC
When I have a bigger computer room, I might get the Quad out again and have a go at repasting.

I think that's a great idea, and it'll boost your confidence for this sort of thing! While I haven't reapplied thermal paste to a G5, I've done it on a number of other processors and it's a straightforward process without a high level of risk to the hardware. Obviously do your homework, but I'm of the opinion that if you can replace a hard drive on a Powerbook, I bet you can follow some online instructions or a YouTube video and fix your G5. :)
 
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Alex_K

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2019
33
90
Sounds like a RAM failure to me. Have you tried re-seating and/or swapping them?
I thought that might be the case too. But the exact same RAM and hard drive are working perfectly in the 2.3GHz Dual Core I switched them to. Might be a dodgy video card. But I am guessing the CPUs are overheating. The Quad has always been a bit temperamental. Often requiring an SMC restart after being turned off for a bit.
 

AL1630

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2016
482
568
Idaho, USA
As far as repasting the CPU, just go slowly and it should be fine. After all, it's already broken, right? If you decide to dig it out again, you could install temperature monitor first to see if it is overheating.
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,861
83
I thought that might be the case too. But the exact same RAM and hard drive are working perfectly in the 2.3GHz Dual Core I switched them to. Might be a dodgy video card. But I am guessing the CPUs are overheating. The Quad has always been a bit temperamental. Often requiring an SMC restart after being turned off for a bit.
Try a new hard drive. I've owned a 1.8 PM, 2.0 DC PM, 2.3 DC PM and the Quad and all of them would go wacky if there was anything slightly amiss with the hard drive.
 
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Macbookprodude

Suspended
Jan 1, 2018
3,306
890
My G5 Quad - which I bought second hand three years ago to play high-end PowerPC games - had become increasingly temperamental; random freezes, kernal panics, loud fans. It would work fine if I didn't do anything taxing but as soon as I loaded up a JS-heavy website or 3D game, it would crash and the fans would go into overdrive. Then, in order to boot up again, I'd have to open it up and reset the SMC and then reset the PRAM.

I've not spotted any leaks but I suspect the water cooling system was beginning to fail.

Wasn't much fun using it anymore. Thankfully, I had an almost-forgotten Dual core 2.3GHz G5 in storage in our under-the-stairs cupboard. Switched the memory and hard drive over, and everything is working beautifully. Now, the Quad's long neglected sibling is the star of my PowerPC collection, while the former headliner is reduced to sharing space with cobwebs in the cupboard.

Won't forget it though.

Want a new one ? I am trying to get rid of my G5 Quad, as I have downsized most of my macs.. I am also selling a 2012 Macbook Pro almost in great condition except for memory issues. I use my PB G4 Titanium, Mac Pro and 2015 Macbook Pro.
 
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