help with G4 Power Mac "Quicksilver"

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by cheekybobcat, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. cheekybobcat macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #1
    I am buying a G4 Power Mac. I was wondering if anyone knows what the capabilities are of this computer...
    Can the RAM be upgraded to 2 or 4GB? Graphics card?
    As far as I know, Leopard can be installed so I am good with the OS.

    Oh, and a friend told me the Power Mac is like a Mac Pro but older. Is this true? Like can the Power Mac house multiple processors and hard drives?
     
  2. tivoli2 macrumors regular

    tivoli2

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    #2
    I own an '02 Quicksilver (Dual 1.0 GHz) & the max RAM is 1.5 GB SDRAM (PC133) - it can hold two hard drives, unless it has a SCSI setup, where it can hold three, but I'm not sure how that works... I've got a 64 MB VRAM nVidia, but you can get aftermarket 256 MB cards... they can be spendy, though. I do run 10.5 on it, and it works quite well.

    You can get processor upgrade kits for them as well - just check around. It helps if you know exactly which model Quicksilver you have. I used mine up until just recently to produce several animated shorts (5 or so minutes) in After Effects using a combination of traditional and AE animation in standard definition, which was pushing the computer, but it did a great job. I found that anything in HD starts to cause severe lag. I still have it running on the side for a second Photoshop machine and other general tasks. It's been and continues to be a great machine for me.

    Also, the Power Mac is NOT like a Mac Pro as the Power Mac uses a Motorola processor and the Mac Pro uses an Intel processor. The only real similar aspect shared is the OS. There are large internal differences! Also, many applications that run on an Intel Mac won't run on a Power Mac, and many Power Mac based applications run on an emulation program called "Rosetta" unless it's a "Universal" application, meaning it runs natively on both Power PC (PPC) & Intel Macs. So you need to double check what the minimum system specs are on the applications you want to use.
     
  3. cheekybobcat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #3
    This is the one I am getting.
    Oh...and is there any way to install the Intel Processor into the Power Mac?
     
  4. krimson macrumors 65816

    krimson

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    #4
    No on the Intel Proc. But you can upgrade to faster chips (www.macsales.com for example carries them)

    You can, if it came like my '02QS, have a total of 5 HDs. Although i do not recommend it because of heat issues.

    If you don't have a Zip drive, you can mount one there. Mine came with a 2-level stacked drive sled, and 2 single drive sleds. Power comes from 2 90-degree 4-pin Y-Splitters. IDE connections from a separate IDE card.

    Cables are a pain to get because of the tight fit in that area
     
  5. cheekybobcat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #5
    I definitely would not put 5 HDs in. Two or three tops...

    I don't think I would use a zip drive either; I would probable use my external.

    4-Pin? Aren't most computers 3? I believe you I just find it strange...

    I don't know if I am going to upgrade the processor though. I looked at macsales and most of the processors are more then I am paying for the machine :p (money I really don't have). I would like to at least get a 1.5 or 1.8GHz though. I guess I'll start saving up :)

    Thanks a lot though, Krimson :)

    P.S. What do you mean the cables are a pain to get in? Are you talking about getting the cables inside the computer? Please elaborate...

    P.S.S. Can the PowerMac house multiple memory components? It looks like there are only 512MB which isn't quite enough for me....
     
  6. DTG macrumors member

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    UK
    #6
    Hi Bobcat, not to question your judgement but what exactly are you purchasing this Power Mac for? Given that you already have a very capable MacBook and seem to be able to barely afford this Power Mac in the first place it seems odd that you'd want to invest in ageing technology. The fact that you don't seem to know what you could do with this computer regarding upgrades seems to suggest that you might be just buying it for the sake of it.

    I probably sound like I'm having a go but really I'm just curious, it seems like a strange purchase to me given that you've come here asking about the machine AFTER deciding to buy it.
     
  7. cheekybobcat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #7
    I'm pretty much just curious. And I am buying this mostly for a day-to-day desktop for internet browsing and maybe some music on it. Not really a main computer but I wanted a computer that I could use without having to charge it. I want a desktop, really. Plus, I like this machine. I've used it at a friends house and I just like it...looks and all...

    I honestly don't plan on changing anything on this computer. I am just curious on the off chance that I do change something.
     
  8. tivoli2 macrumors regular

    tivoli2

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    #8
    Didn't you need some kind of different drive setup for five internal drives? It's SCSI, isn't it? Mine takes two, but they are ATA. Also, Cheekybobcat is buying the version before '02, so for me, it's outside of my absolute direct knowledge. Isn't he going to run into a problem with the system seeing drives (or partitions) over 128 GB? Or am I misunderstanding that aspect...:confused:
     
  9. cheekybobcat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #9
    From what I know from the seller, the max is 128GB. I am probably just run an external off it.
     
  10. dsnort macrumors 68000

    dsnort

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    #10
    There is a way to run larger drives, requires a different controller card. I'm not an expert on it, but in the thread you bought from, "SmurfBoxMasta" talks about it in post #11. May be worth dropping him a line.
     
  11. Cleanhead macrumors newbie

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    #11
    These machines are not the speediest anymore, but, like a old Dodge slant six motor, they can still pull their weight for years to come.

    The max. sized hard drive is 128 GB on the main ATA bus. But if you put a controller card in one of the expansion slots you can hook up any size ATA drive.

    I use a SIIG card in one of the slots with FOUR hard drives hooked up to it in my Quicksilver (2x200 GB and 2x320 GB drives on two double drive sleds) along with a fifth 60 GB OS hard drive on the main ATA bus.
    It records television for us as a DVR using an EyeTV 200 and runs as the house server storing the family videos, music, bittorrents, etc. Various drives just go to sleep when not in use as does the screen and even the whole machine.

    I was worried about heat and power issues, but ran into someone online with five drives who told me his ran fine. Our workhorse even powers the EyeTV off the FireWire bus! And this has been hammering nails like this for three years now. No power supply burnout, no failed drives.

    The ONLY problem I have ever had was that it was sometimes confused about booting from the large drives on the SIIG card, so I put in the 60 from an old external on the original ATA bus and it runs the show. Since it is also a machine for the kids to surf and play games on, it is nice to have a large OS hard drive to handle all their installed software.

    The only roadblock is getting Panther on it.
    I would like to try the "Back to my Mac" feature, but can't get the Leopard installer to allow an installation. The previous owner put a CPU upgrade card in and even though both it, at 1.7 GHz and the original CPU, at 800 GHz, are within the allowed installation speeds, the answer is no. Apple apologized for their patronizing installer, but tells me there is no way to over-rule or hold the hand of the misinformed app.

    I tried but couldn't get a sparse disk image off my installer disc as a work around. One of these days I'll pull the SIIG and try a FireWire target disk mode installation of Leopard - though I hear it must be from a PPC Mac to work. (It won't currently mount as a Target disk, probably because of the SIIG with four extra drives!)

    Enjoy your new old machine.
     
  12. SubaruNation555 macrumors 6502

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    Arlington, VA USA
    #12
    My Quicksilver started as a dual 800MHz and but was upgraded with a PowerLogix dual 1.6GHz card. I wouldn't bother with a processor upgrade, they're pretty expensive, generate even more heat and if equipped with a fan can be pretty loud. I'd max out the RAM and get a couple of nice, fast hard drives. If you say it's just for everyday computing then I think it will be more than fast enough.

    Enjoy your new computer!
     
  13. cheekybobcat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #13
    Thanks, Subaru. Can I get a link for that PowerLogix card though?
     
  14. indierthanthou macrumors member

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #14
    Where did the SIIG card come from and how much?
     

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