SATA on a Dual 867MHz G4

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by chroneos, May 26, 2007.

  1. chroneos macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    #1
    Lately I've been on an upgrade kick, and that focus has turned to my nearly five year-old Power Mac Dual 867MHz MDD G4. The machine is still extremely useful, and seemingly nowhere near obsolesence thus far, and before it begins to show its age, I'd like to soup it up a bit.

    I've already done little things like add a USB 2.0 PCI card, which also allowed me to internalize my bluetooth adapter (as it also had an internal port). So at this point, the machine has USB 2.0 and Bluetooth effectively built-in. I've been looking into throwing a pair of 320GB HDs into it, however in its current state those would be PATA drives, not very encouraging, to say the least. So now I'm considering getting a pair of 320GB SATA HDs, which are, of course, faster--and cheaper! This will also necessitate the purchase of a SATA controller (no big deal, the price difference between PATA and SATA drives oughta even things out).

    Basically what I plan to do initially is decommission the drives on the ATA/66 bus and replace them with SATA drives, and eventually do the same to the drives on the ATA/100 bus.

    Ultimately my question is, would I really see any benefit in performance by doing this, or would I possibly be casting pearls before swine?
     
  2. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #2
    I think you may reach a point where you could theoretically saturate the PCI bus with traffic, but otherwise you should see an increase in speed using the SATA... the hard drives are the slowest part of the computer, after all.

    I think its a great idea because if you buy a bunch of slower PATA drives and buy a new Mac Pro tomorrow then you'll be killing yourself.
     
  3. chroneos thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    #3
    Forgive me, I'm a bit outdated techwise and I'm half asleep, but at what point would PCI bus saturation be a risk? Would it be prudent to perhaps use one SATA controller per two drives, or would that not really matter?
     
  4. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

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    Nov 24, 2005
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    #4
    notta...........
    nope...........

    I've used 3 Sata drives (1-boot/1-scratch/1-final render storage) for a few years in my QS with a SIIG 4-ch card, with lots of heavy duty photoshopping and multi-tasking and about 7-10 other apps open at the same time and have yet to see any signs of saturation or other slowdowns of any kind. My mega-GB image renderings are always superquick and fun, as are file transfers & copying multiple layers, effects and transitions.

    this is all WAY WAY faster than running from the internal bus and even the ATA/133 card & drives I used to have........

    So FWIW, dont worry about saturation, be happy :D
     
  5. dex22 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Round Rock, TX
    #5
    My mistake. I thought the user was the slowest part :rolleyes:
     
  6. chroneos thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    #6
    So they are bootable without issue?
     
  7. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
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    #7
    Yep, the SIIG I have now & the Firmtek I had prior to that were both bootable nottaproblemo......

    however, with some of the older cards (Sonnets & Acards) you have to reformat your drives before the card will recognize them. But all the current cards I have seen do not have that limitation.....
     
  8. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

    Joined:
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    #8

    unless of course, the user is in the computer, or vice-versa, hehehehe :D
     
  9. AlexMaximus macrumors 6502

    AlexMaximus

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    A400M Base
    #9
    I did that and it works great with the Raptor

    Hi there,

    I have the dual G4 1,42 and I swaped to SATA. It makes the whole system more responsive and faster. I would do it, however you want to go for the 150G HD Raptor which spins 10K as a boot disk! This way you have actually SCASI speed and than use your 320HD's as second or third drive for storage. This way you will feel a real gain in speed and eliminate this bottleneck once and for all.
     
  10. aquajet macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2005
    Location:
    VA
    #10
    Ideally you could use a Raptor as your boot drive and then a large 7.2k or two on separate busses for the Home folder and apps. Theoretically, this could further increase performance because the computer is able access resources related to the OS and the Home folder and applications at the same time, rather than having to seek back and forth between those resources on the same mechanism.
     

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