Help needed with G3 ibook please

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by hodgey1989, Jun 4, 2009.

  1. hodgey1989 macrumors member

    Jan 22, 2008
    Im looking at buying a G3 ibook on ebay for my mum and just have a few questions that hopefully someone may be able to help me with.

    Firstly, what's the maximum RAM that they can take?

    Also whats the maximum hard drive it would take?

    Finally (i know it may be wrong, but) i have some Tiger install discs for my imac, would i be able to use these to install Tiger on the ibook.

    Any help is much appreciated :)

  2. windywoo macrumors 6502a


    May 24, 2009
    You wouldn't be able to use those install discs they are tied to your iMac. I don't know how much RAM or hard drive space a G3 can take but I don't think its worth getting tbh.

    My G4 takes 768MB of RAM maximum and Leopard is sluggish. Tiger ran OK, but your G3 is unlikely to be powerful enough to do much of anything beyond very basic web surfing and word processing.

    If my G4 is starting to feel dated I imagine that the G3 will be monolithic.
  3. hodgey1989 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 22, 2008
    She would only really use it for web browsing and word processing. Maybe it would be a good idea to get something a little better though as i could imagine her keeping it for a while.

    Thanks for your help :)
  4. SkyBell macrumors 604


    Sep 7, 2006
    Texas, unfortunately.
    Well, it depends. There were two major revisions of the iBook G3's. Are you talking about this kind of iBook:
    or this:
    I don't recommend the first one (the clamshell, they're called), they're definitely starting to show their age, even in web browsing. Some can run Tiger, but it would be pushing the limit in terms of usability. The hard drive is near impossible to upgrade on them, I would not advise you to try doing it yourself. Most models can take 320 MB of RAM, but the early ones only handle 280, if I remember correctly.

    However, the white ones are still pretty useful for the stuff you described. They can take up to 640 MB of RAM, I believe. All will run Tiger. But it's pretty difficult to upgrade the hard drive in them. They can run Tiger fairly well with the maxed out RAM, however. These are still great machines. On the downside however, they are noted for the large number of issues they had, ranging from the back light going out, to various video problems related to the GPU. The upside is, if you find one in good working condition, there's a fairly good chance its not affected by those issues.

    Hope this helps. :)
  5. hodgey1989 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 22, 2008
    i was looking at the white ones although it would be nice to own a clamshell just for the looks lol.

    Thanks for the advice and i think ill keep a look out for a good working one after your advice.

    Thanks :)
  6. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    depends on the model. G3 iBooks either have 64 or 128MB soldered onto the board. They also have an open slot for a 512MB chip. So the max is either 576 or 640MB.

    The internal HDD bay can accept any 2.5" IDE drive that is less than 9.5mm in height. Taking a quick look over at, I see that they have 320GB drives that fit these requirements. ~$100, BTW.

    Won't work. You'll need the original install discs from the seller. My G3 iBook will restore to OS 9.
  7. NewMacbookPlz macrumors 68040


    Sep 28, 2008
    They take 2.5" IDE drives, that are 9.5mm tall. 1.8" drives are far smaller than the normal laptop drive.

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