Hi everybody. G4 rebuild fun

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by RhianB, Sep 3, 2016.

  1. RhianB macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #1
    I found a QS G4 box out on the curb getting rained on. It was missing a HDD and the optical drive was busted. It was crazy dirty on the inside lol. Luckily I had a buncha old IDE stuff so I cleaned out the tower, replaced the missing bits, and it booted right up sans OSX. A quick 10.4.11 install and it turned on out to be a single 733mhz QS processor with 768 PC133.

    I've had fun upgrading it. So far I maxed out the ram to 1.5Gb and I had a usb2.0 pci card in my junk drawer so I stuck that in there. I picked up a airport card for 5 bucks off ebay and am excited about the dual 1.0GHz proc/heatsink combo I just scored for $12 shipped.

    I've been using this g4 box as a file/media/music server - the ppc733 processor is sluggish but am hoping the new processor will give it a good performance boost for basic every day desk top uses (email/surf/office etc.).

    I wouldn't mind puting a SATA card in (I have about 1.5TB of Sata drives sitting around) and makes sense considering its current file server use. Anyhow, I'm having a lot of fun with this. It is really neat to see a powermac box that is 15+ years old can still be relevant & have purpose today in 2016.
     
  2. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #2
    Nice find, esp. for free!

    Just as a side note, my past experience with QS logic boards is that the lowest end models often won't recognize the L3 cache present on higher end processor cards. I used an 800mhz QS2002 with a dual 1ghz card for quite a while-I'm now using a "true" dual 1ghz, and the difference is definitely notable.

    With that said, you MIGHT be able to get the L3 to work using a program like Sonnet Cache Enabler, although I haven't personally tried it.

    Whatever the case, a dual 1ghz even without L3 will still be a big improvement over a single 733.
     
  3. RhianB, Sep 3, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #3
    Thanks - that's good to know. The auction did not specify cache level - just that it was used, in good condition and came out of a functioning QS box. I did run a program called UniNorthASICChecker and it "verified" that the QS box supported dual processors but did not elaborate on cache and I did not know to ask. I guess we'll see when it get's here :) The devil on my shoulder wants to upgrade the stock 32mb GPU with a flashed ati card that I've read about but The other shoulder wants to keep this fun project under 20 bucks lol. Oh well, we'll see hah!

    edit: When the dual processor d-card gets here, is there a way to identify cache level visually before install?
     
  4. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #4
    There are things you can do…ohhhhh can you do!!!!

    My own Quicksilver is a Dual 1.8Ghz (Sonnet Duet) with 1.5GB ram, Bluetooth 2.0, USB 2.0, PCI-SATA (optical drive is SATA too), and I have six monitors connected (three graphic cards).

    Go crazy and have fun!

    [​IMG]
     
  5. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #5
    All factory QS G4 dual 1ghz cards have 2mb L3/CPU.

    I'm running a G5 Radeon 9600XT in mine. It's a nice upgrade over the stock card in a Quicksilver. It needs to be taped, but in my experience will work every time in a Quicksilver. It can also be modified to support an ADC display if you want that functionality and don't mind to solder. The 9600 Pro PC&Mac can be touchy in a Quicksilver, although I can almost always get them to work. You're gambling a lot with an X800, as these rarely work in Quicksilvers.
     
  6. RhianB, Sep 7, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #6
    So the fun continues. I received the processor but the seller didn't ship the heat sink. Kinda irritated as seller specified that he/she/it could ship with or without so I stated to please send it. Two messages later and silence so I did hunt one down online for $22 shipped - I mean $12 for the daughter card by itself isn't bad really. Also, the pram battery crapped out (pretty sure anyhow) today - the box started beeping and flashing at me at boot up so I'll have to pick one of those up. I did check ram and slots and all seems ok and tested the drive in single user mode and that came back fine. The box would ultimately boot into open firmware where I could boot into 10.4.11 just fine (am using that right now). Tested pram battery and it was dead as a doornail so Ill pick one up tomorrow in town at Batteries+. I think it's the stock battery, so that thing lasted 16 years.

    Fun times lol

    Oh yeah, I took the fans out, cleaned em and lubed em up - MUCH quieter. Also took the 766 out, cleaned it & gave it some fresh Arctic silver 5 until the dual 1ghz goes in.
     
  7. RhianB, Sep 8, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #7
    I'm stumped. All of the sudden, this powermac started to boot up with a long beep, then quick flashing power button (10-20 fast successive flashes like a strobe almost) - then the normal bong sound and then straight into open firmware. I can boot into OSX at that point (boot-mac) and the box runs just fine. Things Ive tried so far.

    - reseated PCI, AGP cards, RAM and processor.
    - messed around with ram sticks - using just one in multiple slots. Also looked at them in OFW and the box sees them all.
    - checked the HDD. using fsck
    - replaced the dead PRAM battery.
    - Reset PRAM.

    I have not been able to really find much online - just some vague references to the beep and flashing light referring to bad ram sticks. I noticed one of them has a different listed speed from the other two. What do you guys think? I mean the box runs fine after booting into OSX from OFW. That's annoying as heck though and I can;t find anything/components wrong with the machine itself. Thanks for the help.
     
  8. 128keaton macrumors 68020

    128keaton

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2013
    #8
    Remove everything external aside from the monitor (what monitor are you using? If it is ADC, there might be something going on with the monitor) and boot it.
     
  9. RhianB, Sep 9, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #9
    Thanks for the reply. It is an apple Cinema display and I have it plugged into the ADC port but have others I can test through the vga port etc - I will proceed. Thanks!

    update: Just disconnected all peripherals, removed the USB2 card, airport card, switched to VGA/different monitor and still the same thing. This is really weird. Perhaps I should just reinstall 10.4.11? Hate to do that but really, not much needs to be done to the box and I have the software I like on a thumb drive.

    I wonder if the logic board is breaking? I have never seen a mac (owned a few intel & g3 PPCs) boot into open firmware before on its own, so I assume it's seeing some sort of problem. Who knows as I do not understand the beep/flashing lights meaning.

    Then again it works absolutely fine booting into OSX from the OFW prompt. Oh well, it's Friday and Im having some beers. Thanks for the help!
     
  10. RhianB, Sep 10, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #10
    Lol so I figured it out. When I reassembled the case from giving it a good deep clean (truly needed it) I pinched that little, what I assume to be, an OFW switch nubbin thing between the case frame and front plate.

    Truly one of those Derrrr moments which I tend to be prone to when I rush. Anyhow, everything is back to normal. On a side note, I installed a fan on the processor heat sink and one on the AGP card that I salvaged off of a hard drive cooler for a little added air circulation. I also have 1.5gb of ram and a dual processor heatsink on the way.

    My antiquated, obsolete tech fun continues.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. 128keaton macrumors 68020

    128keaton

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2013
    #11
    I knew it was something hardware :)
     
  12. RhianB, Sep 17, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #12
    Lol yeah my brain :D

    Got the ram in but one of the sticks is dead, so instead of 1.5gb, I've got 1.25gb until my replacement stick comes in. Heat sink comes in Monday.

    Edit: the ram seller was super cool & is sending a replacement stick+ paid postage envelope to send dead stick back. Excellent CS.
     
  13. RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #13
    Been on the road all week. The dual core 1ghz & heat sink are ready to go in. Clean it up & in she goes :)
     
  14. RhianB, Sep 24, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #14
    image.jpeg
    Went in like a charm. I certainly notice it especially when surfing macrumors - much snappier. Facebag is a possibility now as well. I can use TFF now without it being painfully slow. I upgraded to v45 and am using that right now. I have a couple 500gb Sata drives that I would like to add, so a pci controller is next I think (found a OSX friendly one on newegg for 18) and then maybe I'll give 10.5.8 a try. I've been doing some reading on SSDs on PPC machines and am considering a OWC 64gb or 128gb as start up disk as everyone using them says it gives a really nice boost to app speed, is cool etc. and makes OS9 real snappy. My own experience is that they made my intel macs much more responsive but I did not have to worry about TRIM as both run/ran current OSX at the time of installing the SSD.

    I noticed that this dual processor certainly kicks more heat. No big deal. haven't had this much fun in a while although I've officially gone over my $20.00 cap as I'm at $35.00. Ohhh well :)
     
  15. RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #15
    I'm not a fan of exposed wires, so I sleeved the power supply cables. I also got some pics of the fan on the GPU, CPU and the USB2.0 card. I picked up some aluminum ram heat sinks that will match the CPU heatsink and some aluminum heat sinks for the video card ram chips. Not at all necessary I know but it was cheap and I think it will look cool :D

    G4QSupgrades.jpg

    After my old OS9 EXT died, I attached a 2.5 20GB IDE on the inside USB2.0 port for classic which has a cool blue LED which throws some cool color in the case. I did buy a sata controller that was advertised as PCI but ended up being PCIX + backwards compatible (WinXX) and when installed bricked the G4, so out it came and shipped back to seller. Anyhow, the hunt for a Sata controller marches on :)
     
  16. flyrod macrumors 6502

    flyrod

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    #16
    Thanks for sharing your project; glad you're having fun with it!

    Does anything like Temperature Monitor show the CPU temperature on your computer? I can't remember if it works on the QS.
     
  17. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #17
    Temperature Monitor will. MenuMeters and iStat Menus only read the hard drives.
     
  18. RhianB, Oct 25, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #18
    TempMonitor will but the only download I could find was through wayback machine and it only displays the HDD temperature as it is the only sensor. I guess the QSG4s didn't have many sensors that these apps could use.

    I like istat (use it on my G5) but the oldest version that I can find is 2.0 which will only run on 10.5.8. If I could find one for tiger, well that would be awesome. Until then, for this QSG4 box, I have been using menumeter for at least a partial of what's going on (CPU/disk/Memory/Network) although Im not very into the GUI. I prefer the GUI of istat. Still, between TM and MM it is at least something.

    TM & MM.jpg
     
  19. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #19
    iStat Menus 1.0

    :D
     
  20. RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #20
    I knew there was a reason I hung out here ... well many actually :D

    Thanks!
     
  21. myscrnnm macrumors 6502a

    myscrnnm

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #21
    Wow, great job! Looks as good as new! I just picked up a Power Mac G4 (graphite) for $10 at Value Village; would really like to do something similar if I can get it working.
     
  22. RhianB, Nov 10, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #22
    Thanks :) It's still a work in progress. I am searching for a cheap 2nd IDE hard drive to install OS9. I also added a 2nd hdd usb enclosure stuck to the inside door that has a sharp looking apple logo on it (the other sits in the floppy/zip cage under the optical drive). Both ext enclosures have small leds - one blue and one red which gives it a nice splash of color. I also ordered ram heat sinks for the sticks of ram because they look cool and were $1 for 2 shipped so why not? I tested a 140mm case fan above the optical drive as I had an extra from another gaming build so again, why not? That makes 5 fans total in the box now. It drives Quake3 like a champ at 800x600 and completely playable at 1024.

    I still want to add a PCI sata controller but it has proven to be a slow waiting game for one that is compatible with the QS to surface via ebay etc. When that happens & assuming its not a zillion $$, I will clone the ide and put a SSD in.

    Good luck with yours. Even if the guts are junk, the PMG4 cases are awesome and would make a cool boss i7 gaming build or a hackintosh. There are a few really cool custom builds I've seen online.
     
  23. RhianB, Nov 12, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2016

    RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #23
    So the latest in my QSG4 Refurb - heat sinks for the GeForce2 MX onboard GPU memory came in. I repositioned the GPU fan I added as well. 29213EB7-135E-43A3-925D-D46614BC84C3.jpg
    I had a big 140mm case fan taking up space from a gaming PC tear down so I added that in the only place I could fit it which was over the optical drive. I didn't expect it to do much, but have noticed a drop in temp of about 1-3F when playing Q3A for example. I also added a 2nd 150GB USB2.0 external hard drive (Pulled from my 08 unibody macbook SSD upgrade) on the inside of the case with a cool Apple logo on it. I like how that turned out. 4255EC9A-218B-4EAC-A29C-D2551283BE71.jpg
    The fun continues.
     
  24. RhianB thread starter macrumors 6502

    RhianB

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2016
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM USA
    #24
    Ram heat sinks finally came in. They were supposed to be silver but came black. Ehh @ $0.99 each shipped who cares lol. They look fine. Now I'm waiting on the Sata-ide adapter to hook up the 500gb WD under the optical drive.
    56B7D052-78CE-4EBD-9507-F20E03D53E23.jpg
    I guess I could paint pen them silver if it gets on my nerves lol. :D
     

Share This Page