PowerMac G5 HD Video Help

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by boodyup, Jan 29, 2010.

  1. boodyup macrumors member

    Dec 3, 2009
    Hi All,

    I have a Dual 1.8Ghz G5 (3.5GB Ram) that I have connected to an LCD Tv. It is also connected to my Airport Extreme Base Station via Ethernet cable or optional 802.11N Wireless USB Network Adapter.

    I want to play 1080p mkv files on this computer. The problem is, that when I do play them, the resulting video is unwatchable. It's too choppy and slow. I was wondering if I upgrade the video card from it's stock ATI Card with 64MB of Ram to a Radeon X1900 with 256MB of Ram would this improve the video quality to the point that I wouldn't require having to buy a whole new set-up?

    I also have the newer Mac Mini (2.66Ghz) and that seems to handle 1080p just fine. When I did a comparison using Activity Monitor between the two computers, I noticed that the CPU load wasn't that much different. I'm assuming that the graphics card is the bottleneck.

    BTW - I want to keep the mini for my office computer so switching them is not an option.

    Thanks for your help.
  2. Tech-Minded macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2010
    According to this guide, it would solely depend on what codec you're using. Read the guide for more detail.
  3. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    i assume you are using VLC? which is not really optimised for OSX, let alone OSX on a PPC.

    i would suggest using Plex - but its intel only :(

    converting to .m4v might be your only option, i dont think a new GPU would give you 100% perfect playback because i think the machine is too old. :mad:
  4. MattA macrumors 6502


    May 15, 2006
    Orlando, FL
    About a year ago I upgraded my Powermac G5 to a Mac Mini with the 9600M. The difference in video playback is night and day. The Mac Mini will play 1080p all day long without a hiccup. Honestly, with the amount of cash you'd have to dump into the Powermac to make it even play 720p properly, you could buy a Mac Mini.

    To give you an idea on the speed difference, ripping a movie for the iPod Touch/iPhone with handbrake went like this:

    Powermac G5 1.6: 6 hours
    Mac Mini: 45 minutes.

    $600 is pretty reasonable.
  5. boodyup thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 3, 2009
    Thanks for the info.

    I decided against going with the power mac for two reasons:

    1) Size - thing is huge and in my small condo I can use that extra room around my set-up

    2) Thing is loud! All those damn fans make it difficult to hear what I should be hearing

    3) Due to the limitations posted, I decided to get a popcorn hour c-200. The problem with the Mac Mini (and any apple computer at this time) is that it doesn't have hdmi and therefore can't run HD audio.


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