My first Powerbook

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by iModFrenzy, Jan 24, 2015.

  1. iModFrenzy macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    Today I am getting my first PB G4. Anything I should know? I am also very new to Mac O:S X.
     
  2. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #2
    Things you should know:

    1. It probably won't be your last

    2. Max the RAM. Depending on what model you're getting, this is probably somewhere between 1gb and 2gb. The late model G3s can take up to 1gb(although accessing one of the RAM slots requires removing the processor), as can the first model "Titanium" Powerbook G4s. Buy 512mb PC-133 SO-DIMM SD-RAM for these.

    15 and 17" Aluminum Powerbooks can take 2gb, although there are known issues on some 15" models where one RAM slot doesn't work on and thus limits them to 1gb. The correct RAM for most of these(or at least what will work) is DDR PC-2700 SO-DIMMs with a 1gb capacity. The exception are the last generation(high resolution, double layer super drive) 15 and 17" G4s, which take DDR2 PC2-4200 SO-DIMMs.

    12" G4 Powerbooks have one RAM socket that can hold up to 1gb. Depending on the exact model, either PC-2100 or PC-2700 is the correct spec, but PC-2700 will work in either so is the safe bet. These also have either 128mb or 256mb soldered to the board(again depending on the exact model).
     
  3. Zotaccian, Jan 24, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2015

    Zotaccian macrumors 6502a

    Zotaccian

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    #3
    PowerBook G4 uses PowerPC G4 processor which is single core 32-bit CPU.

    PPC architecture is different than the most common in personal computers, x86 which Intel and AMD use. PPC has been abandoned by Apple quite some time (Apple switched to x86 CPU's) and you cannot install any of the newer OS X releases and the newest you can, 10.5, is unsupported meaning that it hasn't received updates for a long time. These two facts combined means that you cannot install new versions of many apps and many apps are not available at all since developers generally don't care about PPC Macs no longer. You can however get up-to-date browser like TenFourFox which is based on FireFox.

    In performance G4 competes with Celeron M CPU's, some time ago I inspected performance of Celeron M 1.3GHz and 1.33GHz G4 and found out that G4 lost in all tests. So that kind of performance you should expect atleast when using third party apps.
     
  4. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #4
    It all depends on what model PB you have and what you're looking to do. Best bet is let everyone know the machine spec and what you want to do. Powerbooks are best at doing stuff with the software from the era they were made - all internet activity is their weakest point right now.
     
  5. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #5
    I'd be interested to know the details of your test. In general, if running a program that's designed to make full use of the G4(specifically the AltiVec FPU) a G4 will usually eat a similarly-clocked x86 processor of the same vintage for lunch. Of course, not all programs(particularly poorly coded programs that were ported from x86) make full-if any-use of AltiVec and I'm not surprised that they run better on even a low end x86 CPU.

    I can tell you, however, that I've recently been playing with Photoshop 7 on a couple of different G4 systems as well as on a beast of an x86 workstation with dual PIII Xeons at 450mhz. A single 450mhz G4 is about as fast as the dual Xeons doing the same thing, while there's no contest between the PIIIs and a dual 500mhz G4.
     
  6. Zotaccian macrumors 6502a

    Zotaccian

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    #6
  7. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #7
    Pentium and Celeron M chips were a huge leap from Pentium III - I was shocked when I got a Panasonic Toughbook running a 1.6Ghz M - outclassed a 2.8 Pentium 4 tower I had at the time.
     
  8. bse5150 macrumors 6502

    bse5150

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    #8
    Enjoy your new PowerBook. I'm sure you'll have fun tinkering with it. :D
     
  9. weckart macrumors 68040

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    #9
    My first hackintosh was a tatty Dell D600 running Tiger. That had a 1.6GHz Pentium M. It left my better specced PB G4 1.5GHz for dead. Not even close. I bought my first Macbook Pro shortly afterwards and basically put my Powerbook into storage. I never believed anything Apple's marketdroids put out afterwards.
     
  10. iModFrenzy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    Powerbook is work awesome so far, and its already maxed out at 2gbs.

    I can do alot of things on it but installing software like minecraft and skype is not working out. I also got Unreal Tournament and Im getting Call of duty for it :D
     
  11. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #11
    Download Tenfourfox for your browser. You will need the 7450 version.

    If you're running Leopard(10.5) you can also download Leopard Webkit.

    Don't use Safari.

    Many times getting software to work requires scouring the internet for older PowerPC or Universal versions.

    I don't use Skype, so can't help you on that. I know there has been some extensive discussion in this section. At least as I understand it(again, going on memory) the PPC client of Skype has only supported audio(no video) for a while and I think that Microsoft either has or is in the process of not allowing these older versions to connect to their servers. You'll need to search here to see if there's a work around.

    And, ultimately, you are dealing with an unsupported architecture so you are primarily going to be dealing with older versions of software, hacked versions of software to allow them to continue to be used, and only a very few instances of software that is still actively maintained. Tenfourfox is one of the few still maintained.
     
  12. iModFrenzy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    Ah okay, thanks! The applications arent a big issue for me or atleast not anymore now that I know that games like Doom,COD,etc work on here.:)

    Though I am curious if its possible to overclock to 1.67ghz(incase the games need more than the current 1.25ghz I have).:cool:
     
  13. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #13
    No chance. :D
     
  14. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #14
    If you need a 1.67ghz G4, buy a laptop that already has one in it.

    The last generation ones are affordable, and you get a lot of extra bonuses with them like a higher resolution screen and DDR2 PC2-4200 RAM. You also get a Radeon 9700 with 128mb of VRAM, vs the 9600 with 64mb of VRAM you have now.
     
  15. iModFrenzy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    Okay, for now Ill stick with 1.25ghz till I get some money.
     
  16. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #16
    Any games will need to be a universal binary or PowerPC version that is OS X compatible. I am sure we can all make a list of good games that run on your machine if you would like. I for one like to play Battlefield 1942 but I am not sure how it would run on your PowerBook.
     

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