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Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
Hi guys, I am "new" to MacRumors, in the sense that I've been browsing these forums for years, but hadn't decided to register until now. Over the years I have owned many PowerPC macs, an iMac G3 DV, iBook G3 Clamshell, iBook G4, Powermac G4, Powermac G4 MDD 1.42DP, and so on...

Well, I recently decided that I wanted to get back into collecting PowerPC machines, and two nights ago while browsing on OfferUp, I found a little old lady who had a 1999 iMac G3 Blueberry for sale, posted as an eMac (probably why the ad was 3 months old and hadn't been sold yet) for $30.00, with some original protective plastic still on it!

Specs: 350Mhz G3, 512MB Ram, 6GB HDD (I installed a 120GB), Tiger 10.4.11, and an Airport Card.

The next night, I was on LetGo, and found a guy about an hour away, with a G4 Cube, Cinema Display, Pro Speakers, Keyboard, and Mouse for $75.00, so I snatched that kit up as well.

Specs: 450Mhz G4, 192MB Ram (I know), Tiger 10.4.11, and a 20GB HDD.

My main reason, besides introducing myself, for making this post is, I am at a loss as to what I should use either of these machines for. I used to use an iMac G3 back in 2008 almost daily with no problems, however, neither of these machines can really even browse the Finder without having issues locking up. Now, I know these machines aren't really capable of browsing the modern web, and I've been using my file server to quickly download apps for them, but I hate to just leave them sit there doing nothing. Can anyone give me ANY ideas of what to use them for? I thought about maybe a little jukebox type setup, but due to age, the foam on both the iMac internal speakers, and the G4 Cube speakers is rotted...Replacement speakers for the iMac are $89.99...

Any ideas are appreciated!

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casperes1996

macrumors 604
Jan 26, 2014
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5,728
Horsens, Denmark
The newest version of Firefox can actually run on the PPC processors. There's a project called TenFourFox that compile specially made versions of Firefox for each PPC processor. It's not exactly fast, but it does in fact make your G4 (with more RAM) capable of using the modern web. My iMac G4 can run MacRumors no problem for instance. Even watch low-rees YouTube and such. Not exactly a nice user experience but it works
 

Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
Yeah, I've been running TenFourFox on the G3, it's "ok" to use if I didn't have my Macbook, I honestly haven't really touched the Cube much until I can get some more RAM for it. I used to have a stock pile of PPC parts, but I got rid of it all ages go.

Now I'm trying to track down a processor upgrade for the Cube, but they are very hard to come by. If anyone has a cheaper set of replacement speakers for a G3, I'd be grateful as well.
 

Darmok N Jalad

macrumors 603
Sep 26, 2017
5,342
46,754
Tanagra (not really)
Great scores!

512MB RAM in a G3 iMac is crazy. 256MB was still standard on the old G4 minis. Seeing both of those machines takes me back to college, where the student union had a small Apple store and I used to go in occasionally and admire both of those, especially the Cube.
 
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AL1630

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2016
482
577
Idaho, USA
Looks great! I wish there were cubes for sale around me. It even seems there are fewer things like iMacs on Craigslist, etc. recently.:(
 

Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
Looks great! I wish there were cubes for sale around me. It even seems there are fewer things like iMacs on Craigslist, etc. recently.:(

I know how you feel. I wish I could find more G3's for sale, I refuse to pay eBay asking prices, realistically they aren't worth it. I'd like to find one with a faster processor so that I could use it to browse the light web. As for the Cube, I may end up selling it, idk.

I am also trying to locate some replacement speakers for the G3, I guess time has taken its toll on the foam, and they are shot. It's a shame because otherwise the system is mint.
 
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casperes1996

macrumors 604
Jan 26, 2014
7,550
5,728
Horsens, Denmark
I know how you feel. I wish I could find more G3's for sale, I refuse to pay eBay asking prices, realistically they aren't worth it. I'd like to find one with a faster processor so that I could use it to browse the light web. As for the Cube, I may end up selling it, idk.

I am also trying to locate some replacement speakers for the G3, I guess time has taken its toll on the foam, and they are shot. It's a shame because otherwise the system is mint.

Seems like time is the least kind to the speakers. My G3 has the same issue. Got it a few years back for just under $80 (converted from DKK). What are the asking prices you see? My G3 came with OS9 install disk, original mouse and keyboard (as well as original paperwork and other software), but no original packaging.
 

AL1630

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2016
482
577
Idaho, USA
A couple years ago, there were G3s all over Craigslist, but I didn't have enough space for more than one, which is the one I have now. It seems like all those just disappeared, now there's only a couple for high prices.

And buying them on eBay isn't viable because shipping is 2x the cost of the Mac, and that old plastic is getting pretty brittle, making it really likely to break if it gets bumped on a truck.
 

Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
My original G3 was a 400Mhz Graphite DV/SE, I paid $40 for it, used it everyday (this was around 2009ish), and the speakers were AWESOME. In fact, when I bought this Blueberry the other day, I told my fiance I couldn't wait for him to hear it, only for there to simply be a bunch of crackling noises....I have experience refoaming speakers, but there aren't any kits for these.

As for G3 prices, I see them around $120-130 for Slot Loaders, or $60 for Tray Loaders. I have no interest in Tray Loaders though, just personal preference.

Man..I'm only 22, but when I think of 2009, it feels like yesterday, not ~10 years ago.
 
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AL1630

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2016
482
577
Idaho, USA
The speakers on my G3 are still good, and they really are great. Apple and Harman Kardon definitely didn't skimp on the audio.

I was watching a video from the 8-Bit Guy about how collectible iBooks are, his theory was that a product's value starts high, then plummets to almost nothing. After that, if the computer is iconic/collectible enough, the price starts to rise and rise. Unfortunately, I think G3s passed their low point and will probably only rise in price.

Also, I refuse to believe that 2009 was 9 years ago.
 

Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
The speakers on my G3 are still good, and they really are great. Apple and Harman Kardon definitely didn't skimp on the audio.

I was watching a video from the 8-Bit Guy about how collectible iBooks are, his theory was that a product's value starts high, then plummets to almost nothing. After that, if the computer is iconic/collectible enough, the price starts to rise and rise. Unfortunately, I think G3s passed their low point and will probably only rise in price.

Also, I refuse to believe that 2009 was 9 years ago.

I envy you, I have not heard the sound of an iMac G3 speaker since owning my Graphite. I watch The 8-Bit Guy all the time haha.
 

Slix

macrumors 65832
Mar 24, 2010
1,501
2,107
A few of the G3 iMacs in my possession have bad speakers, but the ones that are still good sound amazing!

I agree with the idea that light internet browsing can be done on either of your new Macs, especially with the help of @eyoungren's TenFourFox tweaks, I've had decent internet browsing speeds on as low as a 300 MHz G3 with 256 MB of RAM. :)

I love to play old classic games on these machines, and even without internet usage, they can still be used to type up papers or make slideshows in Keynote or the like. Whatever you end up doing, I'm sure you'll have a fun time. They're a blast to explore even today. :)
 
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Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
A few of the G3 iMacs in my possession have bad speakers, but the ones that are still good sound amazing!

I agree with the idea that light internet browsing can be done on either of your new Macs, especially with the help of @eyoungren's TenFourFox tweaks, I've had decent internet browsing speeds on as low as a 300 MHz G3 with 256 MB of RAM. :)

I love to play old classic games on these machines, and even without internet usage, they can still be used to type up papers or make slideshows in Keynote or the like. Whatever you end up doing, I'm sure you'll have a fun time. They're a blast to explore even today. :)


Yeah, I hope to buy some PC133 ram here when I can find a better deal. I'd like to max both of them out, but most places want $15 for 512mb of the stuff! $75 for 2.5gb of RAM!

My dream machine is an iMac G3 Snow. Just can't find one.
 

Dronecatcher

macrumors 603
Jun 17, 2014
5,209
7,795
Lincolnshire, UK
This might be of some use regarding the iMac:

https://68kmla.org/forums/index.php...mmer-2001-700mhz/&tab=comments#comment-326957

Certainly replacing the speakers with alternative units of some description should be viable.

For the Cube, maybe sit on it until some speakers pop up on ebay etc at the right price? It's a shame because both Macs are lost without audio - plugging in separate speakers kills the aesthetic...unless you're feeding the audio to a large sound system.
If you choose to do the latter, a standard audio jack will suffice for the iMac - for the Cube use a USB audio dongle that can be had for next to nothing on eBay.

With added audio, the iMac can be a jukebox, internet radio, retro gamestation with OS9 (and Playstation 1 emulator) - same with the Cube but with added RAM and various tweaks as found on the forum, you're good to go for the internet, Youtube, Spotify etc.
 
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AphoticD

macrumors 68020
Feb 17, 2017
2,283
3,462
This might be of some use regarding the iMac:

https://68kmla.org/forums/index.php...mmer-2001-700mhz/&tab=comments#comment-326957

Certainly replacing the speakers with alternative units of some description should be viable.

For the Cube, maybe sit on it until some speakers pop up on ebay etc at the right price? It's a shame because both Macs are lost without audio - plugging in separate speakers kills the aesthetic...unless you're feeding the audio to a large sound system.
If you choose to do the latter, a standard audio jack will suffice for the iMac - for the Cube use a USB audio dongle that can be had for next to nothing on eBay.

With added audio, the iMac can be a jukebox, internet radio, retro gamestation with OS9 (and Playstation 1 emulator) - same with the Cube but with added RAM and various tweaks as found on the forum, you're good to go for the internet, Youtube, Spotify etc.

That’s a good looking replacement speaker for the iMac. I would certainly go for this route over patching up the deteriorated speakers.

I have a few Macs with crackly speakers; PowerBook G4 15”, PowerMac G5 and my MacBook Unibody 2008. I won’t worry about the G5 as it’s a rubbish speaker anyway, but I hope to repair the portables. I bought a replacement set for the PBG4 from a scrapped machine, but haven’t installed it yet as it requires pulling the logic board. I’ll get to it one day.

The speakers in both of my Sawtooth G4s still sound good considering their age (late ‘99). The best audio in my collection is from the late 2009 iMac 21.5”, but I typically route audio through a decent set of Behringer studio monitors with a combination of a 12 track mixer and Airfoil for routing over WiFi.
 
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AL1630

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2016
482
577
Idaho, USA
If you do decide to go the external speaker route, some Harman Kardon soundsticks should match the design pretty well, since they were designed by Jony Ive. The 1st and 2nd gen ones are around 20 to 30 dollars on eBay now. The Built in speakers are super cool though.
 

Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
This might be of some use regarding the iMac:

https://68kmla.org/forums/index.php...mmer-2001-700mhz/&tab=comments#comment-326957

Certainly replacing the speakers with alternative units of some description should be viable.

For the Cube, maybe sit on it until some speakers pop up on ebay etc at the right price? It's a shame because both Macs are lost without audio - plugging in separate speakers kills the aesthetic...unless you're feeding the audio to a large sound system.
If you choose to do the latter, a standard audio jack will suffice for the iMac - for the Cube use a USB audio dongle that can be had for next to nothing on eBay.

With added audio, the iMac can be a jukebox, internet radio, retro gamestation with OS9 (and Playstation 1 emulator) - same with the Cube but with added RAM and various tweaks as found on the forum, you're good to go for the internet, Youtube, Spotify etc.

Definitely going to order those up and see how they work! I know they wont sound as good as the Harmon Kardons, but hey, maybe they'll surprise me.

I hear you with having bad hearing, I know I will one day, I drive a 1975 AM General DJ5 Jeep, and I've got a set of tower speakers laying on their sides over my rear wheel wells, they crank too haha.
 
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casperes1996

macrumors 604
Jan 26, 2014
7,550
5,728
Horsens, Denmark
With added audio, the iMac can be a jukebox, internet radio, retro gamestation with OS9 (and Playstation 1 emulator) - same with the Cube but with added RAM and various tweaks as found on the forum, you're good to go for the internet, Youtube, Spotify etc.


I looked for a compatible version of Spotify and as far as I could tell, it no longer seems like an option I'm afraid. I couldn't even find a Tiger compatible binary anymore, and from what I could read, the old Tiger binary can't play music anymore - still works if you can get Leopard as far as I could tell though.
 

AL1630

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2016
482
577
Idaho, USA
I have spotify on my G4 Server (Running tiger) It's kind of broken, but still plays music. I'll see if I can find where I got it.
 

casperes1996

macrumors 604
Jan 26, 2014
7,550
5,728
Horsens, Denmark
I have spotify on my G4 Server (Running tiger) It's kind of broken, but still plays music. I'll see if I can find where I got it.

Thanks. That'd be very appreciated. i wanted it for my iMac G4, but no dice for me when I looked around. Spotify's website only supports Leopard and up (though I'm impressed they even support Leopard honestly. It's rare that software like that supports anything prior to Snow)
 
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Camacorn

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 22, 2017
57
43
Ocala, FL
I've had a home file server for years, it's great for serving files to all devices at the same time. I've got hundreds of movies as well, that I can access from anywhere using Plex. I also have it setup as a Time Machine backup device.
 

Dronecatcher

macrumors 603
Jun 17, 2014
5,209
7,795
Lincolnshire, UK
I looked for a compatible version of Spotify and as far as I could tell, it no longer seems like an option I'm afraid. I couldn't even find a Tiger compatible binary anymore, and from what I could read, the old Tiger binary can't play music anymore - still works if you can get Leopard as far as I could tell though.

Still working on my Macs - just tried it on my G3 iBook running Tiger.
 
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