iMac G4 Advice

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by MBP13, May 3, 2011.

  1. MBP13, May 3, 2011
    Last edited: May 3, 2011

    MBP13 macrumors 6502

    MBP13

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    #1
    Hi.

    I'm a new Mac user after having dealt with PC's for way too long, and I'm certain that I'll never look back to Windows ever again. I love my MacBook Pro to death, and I especially love Mac OS.

    I have some money to spend, and there is a nice looking iMac G4 on a surplus website that I am extremely interested in purchasing if the price is right. Right now, it looks as though the price will stay pretty reasonable given that there is only 1 day and 21 hours left until the auction ends, and current bid is less than $65 dollars.

    Here's the iMac that I'm interested in buying: From the pictures it looks to be a nice Mac.

    I'd love to know anything and everything that I should know about this iMac whether the information is good or bad. What can you tell me about it?

    From the pictures, it looks like it is running Leopard, so that seems nice (even though I'm used to Snow Leopard on the MBP).

    There are a few things I'm hesitant about. Because it is a non-Intel Mac, I'm basically out of luck if I want to watch YouTube videos, play games that require Flash, etc. Right? YouTube does have a HTML5 beta version of the website, so would that work on a non-Intel Mac? I mainly browse forums, Yahoo! chat, etc. I should be fine, I think. I wouldn't kill me to watch YouTube videos or anything that required Flash on the MacBook Pro.

    Would I be able to browse the internet using AirPort on this iMac?

    Is there anything else that you think I should know before potentially buying this Mac?

    Thank you SO much! I appreciate it! :)

    Pictures:

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  2. DoghouseMike macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    Looks pretty good, it's a "fast G4", so youtube will probably be watchable, if not silky smooth, moreso if you install clicktoflash and dodge the flash version of the video.
    If there's an airport card installed, it'll work, if not you'll need to buy one and install it yourself (see ifixit.com for instructions, and everymac, lowendmac, or mactracker to confirm, but I think it's an "airport extreme" card), or get one of them usb dongle type things.
    It's a pretty sweet machine, but you have now posted it on a public forum, so the bidding might get a bit out of hand!?
     
  3. MBP13 thread starter macrumors 6502

    MBP13

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    #3
    ^Thanks for the advice, I'll go ahead and remove the link to the auction so that no one else takes what I want. :D

    Though, I will re-upload the photos.
     
  4. iBookG4user macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #4
    I've owned a similar iMac G4, sold it a few months ago. It's a pretty nice machine, although it won't be anywhere near as fast as your MacBook Pro. A few things of note to get the iMac purring, definitely check out a RAM upgrade, that model of iMac can support up to 2GB of RAM and it is worthwhile. When you get it download TinkerTool and Onyx. Those two applications can be used to really speed up the Mac, specifically you'll want to disable the dock reflection. If minimizing windows is choppy, you can set it to the Scale effect instead of the Genie effect. Also, instead of the dock icon bouncing when an application opens you can have the indicator below it pulsate. Start to mess with the settings and you'll be surprised at how much life you can breathe into it. :)
     
  5. MBP13, May 3, 2011
    Last edited: May 4, 2011

    MBP13 thread starter macrumors 6502

    MBP13

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    #5
    ^I'll be sure to download those apps if I get the Mac.

    I just noticed that it probably won't come with iMac G4 speakers. :( Does anyone know where I can get a set? I probably could ask here, and I'm willing to pay for them, too. However, if the internal speaker is good (is it?), then I won't worry about the speakers.
     
  6. eljanitor macrumors 6502

    eljanitor

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #6
    Some facts you may want to know first

    Its a nice machine for an iMac G4 flat panel. Just a few things you might want to be aware of here:

    1) Thees models had a problem with the neck, it would wear out and the display would be like a limp noodle. Kinda like the second pic they have there where it's touching the desk all the way down. Thats what they do over time and they don't want to stay up after that. Unless you replace the neck which is a HUGE expense.

    2) It's not USB 2.0 it is however USB 1.3 the data transfer rate will be as so.

    3) It does not have Gigabit Ethernet capability either.

    I wouldn't pay much for it at all, might be better to get a used G5 if you want to get a second iMac that's non-Intel.
     
  7. MBP13 thread starter macrumors 6502

    MBP13

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    #7
    Thanks for pointing this out. I asked the seller, so I'll just have to wait and see what s/he says. The neck does look strong, though, in my opinion, because it's holding up the screen in the first picture. Maybe the seller just put it down to show what it can do? I don't know.

    What does this mean?
     
  8. eljanitor, May 4, 2011
    Last edited: May 4, 2011

    eljanitor macrumors 6502

    eljanitor

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #8

    The neck if I remember correctly is about a $120.00 - 140.00 part then there's all the labor that goes with changing it out. About 1.5 - 2 hrs. Almost all of them wear out over time. They can stay totally upright and stay there for a picture, but if you bump the table, or start to adjust the height, it will just want to go all the way down. (sometimes crashing down breaking the bezel) So its all the way up, or all the way down when the neck goes bad( usually the latter).

    It also looks like the bezel ( the frame around the screen) is not quite attached fully, and may be broken and partially coming off. The gap between the two shows what looks like that. See attached picture

    What does Gigabit Eithernet mean?
    This may be a bit much here but I'll try to explain. If you're not going to connect to the internet wirelessly, via Airport card you will then be using the Ethernet port and some type of Ethernet cable. Its the big telephone jack looking port on the computer with this symbol above it <•••>

    Gigabit Eithernet (1000 Base T) is a computer networking standard that has been around since about 2000 in some Mac models. The iMac line of Mac computers since 2005 have come standard with it. What this means is any computer with this ability can transfer data at a rate of 1000 Mbp/s ( 1000 megabits per second AKA, 1 gigabit a second) over Ethernet. This may not seem important to most people, but you may notice slow streaming video at times and the like when using something slower like 10/100.

    The model that you are looking at has 10/100 where a Gigabit port would show as 10/100/1000 so making it simple:

    10mbs/100mbs/1000mbit/s

    10Mbit/s..............10 megabits per second obsolete
    100Mbit/s.............100 megabits per second can use cat5 cables
    1000Mbit/s...........1000 megabits per second can use cat5e and cat6

    Now that I fed you all of that info, here's what it means to you:

    Your average DSL connection is anywhere between 1.5 Mbp/s - 3 Mbp/s max.
    Some broadband connections can go as high as 20 Mbp/s depending on the service etc......

    For the internet, it probably wont do much right now. That really depends on the speed of your connection (or bandwidth). So Gigabit Ethernet allows you to use your internal network bandwidth better, and gives you room for what improvements may possibly be coming in the future. Also if you're considering using ( or are using) an internet service like FIOS, or AT&T's Uverse in the future you would be much happier with a machine with Gigabit Ethernet.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. MBP13 thread starter macrumors 6502

    MBP13

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    #9
    Thank you for your advice and help. However, because this particular iMac G4 didn't look so good, I am no longer interested in it. I did, though, buy an iMac G5 17" (1.8 GHz with Bluetooth Keyboard & Mouse) for $328.95. Earlier today, I tried to bid on a iMac G5 with an Intel processor that was running Snow Leopard. I lost by $5.01! :( I wanted that one so badly!

    Out of all the iMac G5's I looked at on eBay, this one seemed to be the best of the bunch for a reasonable price. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&_trksid=p4340.l2557&rt=nc&nma=true&item=300545329931&si=BD2wv5BIwqV4v6oXYLbzvgBPDXY%253D&viewitem=

    Though I did buy an iMac G5, I did find these REALLY, REALLY nice iMac G4's running Leopard. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=190526970385&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT
     
  10. eljanitor macrumors 6502

    eljanitor

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #10
    That's better then the G4 you were looking at. Did you get the ALS ambient light senor model? or the standard? Either way it's priced right for a G5 with blue tooth and airport.

    The only advice that I have for these models is that you open it up carefully, and blow any dust or dirt (with an air can not a compressor!!!!)out of the heatsink and fans that may have accumulated over time.

    Look at the picture I attached to open the iMac G5. It's really simple. Just a note when the 3 case screws stop moving stop turning them, they do not come out, do not try to force them to come out. And don't touch the electronics inside with your bare hands unless you're properly grounded.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. MBP13 thread starter macrumors 6502

    MBP13

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    #11
    ^Thank you for that chart. I'll have fun cleaning it out, for sure.

    The iMac I bought off of eBay has a the ABS. I'll have to get used to not using a back-lit keyboard, but I think I'll be fine.
     

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