Powermac 1.8GHz vs iMac 1.8GHz


macrumors 68010
Original poster
Oct 4, 2003
London, UK
Hey guys, just wondering what everyones opinion on the PM 1.8GHz vs iMac 1.8GHz is... I'm totally confused as to which one to get! The only difference I can see is about £30 (educational discount) and the size - one being a gigantic silver beast and the other being a slick little monitor with a beast built into it...

I'll be using it mainly for video editing (FCP) a bit of Photoshop... The rest my PowerBook can handle!

I have a cruddy 19" CRT Monitor at home that I could use, but I'm not sure...



macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2004
The Msp
Well, if you're not doing heavy-duty stuff, I'd go with the iMac. I personally prefer the PowerMac just because of the expandability. You can put in a better graphics card in the future, add extra drives, etc. You can always upgrade the hard drive in an iMac, but with the PowerMac you can just add more, and have them be serial ATA drives, as opposed to sticking the extra drive in an external case. So, uh, I guess what I'm saying is, if you want expandabilty and you already have a monitor, go PowerMac. If you don't really care for either of those, go with the iMac.


Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
Gone but not forgotten.
They appear to be the same motherboard with some expandability available on the PowerMac version. Being able to switch the graphics card and monitor would be better for me and most people who don't mind messing a bit.


macrumors 6502a
Aug 30, 2004
Adelaide, Australia
I still havnt made my final decision. At the moment, it feels that the Powermac is winning because of the expandability of a better GPU.
Though, I am waiting for both models to get upgraded, then I will make my final decision. I would like to get the iMac over the Powermac as then I can buy myself a 30GB iPod Photo, Nintendo DS and have money left over to get whatever else I want (as I already have enough for a Powermac G5 + 20" ACD). But I also would like the computer to last about three-four years+.
If the iMac comes out with a more decent GPU, then its an instant win (something like a 9600XT will suit it perfectly IMO, even if thats an BTO extra).


macrumors 604
Jan 20, 2005
The slot load drive limits you to 12cm discs on the iMacs. If you are to get a PM, go for dualies. There's no reason to get a SP G5 and to waste all that internal space. Try looking for rev b dual 1.8GHz G5s that allow for a max of 8GB of RAM. Any sort of serious editing or photoshop work requires at least 2 to 4 GB of RAM. Since 1GB Dimms are so expensive, getting 8 512MB dimms seems to be the best price when upgrading to 4GB.


macrumors newbie
Dec 2, 2004
It is possible to expand the G5 Powermac to hold not just two but six hard drives! Although this limits PCI cards to short-length only (except for the 4th slot), it is possible to hold 2.4 TB of space in the Powermac (G5JamPlus).

The Powermac also is capable of holding twice the amount of RAM as the iMac.

To have a computer that will last, I would recommend the Powermac. Because things aren't as squished as they are in the iMac, the Powermac will be easier to repair, and I expect that the greater expandability will give the Powermac a few years of usability over the iMac.
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