Purchasing an iMac G3- bad idea?

rafifreak00

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 7, 2006
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Kansas. No, not on a farm.
I checked my local craigslist and I found a listing selling an iMac G3 Snow for $100. Here are the specs...

-500 MHz
-384 MB RAM
-20GB Hard Drive
-CD Burner

Includes power cord and Apple Pro Keyboard + Mouse.

I plan on upgrading the RAM to 768 or 512, adding a 120GB hard drive, and installing Mac OS X 10.4 on there.

What are you guys' opinions? Should I go for it, I mean it's only $100 for quite a nice machine. Or should I forget about it?

Here are the pictures...
 

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kondspi

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Sep 6, 2006
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It's a fine price. As an ex-owner of three iMac G3s, I'd encourage you to buy yourself one of these systems.
 

calculus

Guest
Dec 12, 2005
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Well, if you want it get it. It's not a lot of money. We kept our G3 when we bought a G5 and it is still in regular use.
 

emptyCup

macrumors 65816
Jan 5, 2005
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A fine machine at a good price. At some point you will not be able to upgrade the OS, but it will still be a good machine for most of the things people use a computer for.
 

kondspi

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Sep 6, 2006
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plinkoman said:
yea, supposedly leopard won't be compatible with G3's, but for only $100, I'd say its worth it.
I bet someone is going to write something like XPostFacto for G3s and Leopard. It might take a few weeks/months...
 

rafifreak00

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 7, 2006
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Kansas. No, not on a farm.
Thanks for all the replies!
I set up to exchange him cash for it later on today.

Anyway- about installing RAM and a new hard drive, does anybody know the difficulty level of doing so?
I know on my iBook G4 all I do is remove the keyboard and the RAM slot is right there, but since this is a desktop, I'm a bit more worried about opening up the machine...

Any suggestions?
 

bigrell486

macrumors 6502
Jul 10, 2006
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kondspi said:
I bet someone is going to write something like XPostFacto for G3s and Leopard. It might take a few weeks/months...
Leopard is already compatible with the G3, you just need a DVD drive to install it since there is no CD version.
 

kondspi

macrumors regular
Sep 6, 2006
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Leopard isn't out yet.

You're thinking Tiger, which is G3-compatable. Interestingly, Tiger does have a CD version.

Cool signature.
 

frankblundt

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Sep 19, 2005
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RAM upgrades are extremely easy and critical if you want to run OSX on it, HD a little less so in that you have to take the thing to bits, but still not actually difficult. (It won't format over 128GB BTW)

One guide (of many out there) here
 

rafifreak00

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Original poster
Aug 7, 2006
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Kansas. No, not on a farm.
Thank you for the tutorial links-

I just went over to his apartment, played around with it a bit and brought it home for $100. He threw in a brand new, still in shrink wrap Apple Pro Keyboard, Apple Pro Mouse, and power cord- I'm very pleased.

I'm on the iMac right now and I haven't found any major problems with it. The CRT screen is very clean and the body doesn't have any cracks or any flaws. For only a 500MHz processor with 384MB of RAM, it runs Mac OS X 10.4.8 Tiger really [and I mean really] fast.

Only one problem I've encountered so far- the screen flickers occasionally, about every thirty or so minutes. Do any other iMac... [or Mac] users here know what I can do or what the problem is?

Thanks everyone for your replies once more!
 

tdhurst

macrumors 601
Dec 27, 2003
4,008
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Phoenix, AZ
Yes...

I would bet the screen flicker is an early warning sign of a dying monitor...

But hell, who cares, it was 100 bucks. Just go with it.

PS...I actually purchased a machine with those exact specs a few months ago (for the same price) and upgraded it to 512 ram--which seems like the sweet spot. I'm quite happy with my purchase!
 

steamboat26

macrumors 65816
May 25, 2006
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Arlington VA
In case your monitor dies...

there might be a VGA input on the back of your imac. I have an indigo G3 with the same specs as yours, and it has a VGA input.
Or if the monitor dies, you could do something really cool and try to get a new monitor inside the imac case.
 

TheMasin9

macrumors 6502a
Dec 22, 2004
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Huber Heights, OH
leopard

plinkoman said:
yea, supposedly leopard won't be compatible with G3's, but for only $100, I'd say its worth it.
just because the SDK isnt compatible with g3s doesnt mean that the final consumer release wont be...
 

rafifreak00

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 7, 2006
132
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Kansas. No, not on a farm.
Well- so far so good. I deleted some apps that I didn't need, ran monolingual, and installed + customized my basic applicaions to my liking- Camino, iTunes, iChat, the usual.

And I solved my "screen flicker" problem, and with the answer arose another problem. It happens that the screen wasn't really flickering- I set my corners to my liking and the bottom left is "Start Screen Saver." The screen flickering was really my screen saver starting and since I was still moving my mouse, it blinked once or twice and went back to OS X.

Now then- I didn't move my mouse there. Occasionally, my mouse moves to the bottom left corner of my screen while I'm moving it one way or another. Has anyone else ever experienced this? I'm using the Apple Pro Mouse on a desk without a mousepad- can it be fixed as easily as placing a mousepad under it? Or is it something else?

Besides that nuisance... Geez, I love this machine. I only wish I could place it on my room and not isolated here in the computer room. I would although the placing of the cable modem + wireless router doesn't allow me to do so. Any ideas on that by the way?
 

frankblundt

macrumors 65816
Sep 19, 2005
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hmm - i have that issue with the pro mouse too.. but i'm very lazy, so i just moved the screen-saver hot corner somewhere else.. :p

as far as i can tell lately tho (i use a BT mouse most of the time and my short term memory is going) it's been better since i started mouseing on a sheet of plain paper
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
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Your iMac g3 has a place for an airport card and needs the airport card adapter. With that, you could put it anywhere.
 

rafifreak00

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 7, 2006
132
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Kansas. No, not on a farm.
I researched some info about the iMac G3's airport card and adapter- the prices I'm finding are $40 for the adapter, and $60 for the card itself? $100 just for wireless internet?

Anybody know any cheaper retailers, I'd rather get another iMac for that price :D .
 

CubeHacker

macrumors 65816
Apr 22, 2003
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rafifreak00 said:
I researched some info about the iMac G3's airport card and adapter- the prices I'm finding are $40 for the adapter, and $60 for the card itself? $100 just for wireless internet?

Anybody know any cheaper retailers, I'd rather get another iMac for that price :D .
Actually, it will probably cost you even more than that. The original Airport cards have been discontinued for a few years now, and usually sell for $80-120 depending on where you look, used. The adaptor might come with it, sometimes not, and will cost $20 too. Its expensive, but its the best option to get wireless on there, unless you want an external ethernet bridge. USB wireless options aren't very good under OSX.
 

Dane D.

macrumors 6502a
Apr 16, 2004
645
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ohio
rafifreak00 said:
Now then- I didn't move my mouse there. Occasionally, my mouse moves to the bottom left corner of my screen while I'm moving it one way or another. Has anyone else ever experienced this? I'm using the Apple Pro Mouse on a desk without a mousepad- can it be fixed as easily as placing a mousepad under it? Or is it something else?
Get a cloth mouse pad and that will go away. The Apple Pro mouse does not like hard shiny surfaces. Nor does it like fast movement. Not a good fps gaming mouse. Great for everything else though.