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Apple Desktops Discussion of Apple's desktop machines including Mac Pro, iMac, Power Mac, and mini

Power Mac - Is a Power Mac G5 still a feasible computer option?


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iRye

 
Member Since: Jan 01, 2007
Location: Cow Town, Alberta, Canada
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I'm getting a new computer before March 19th, 2009. No question. Due to the fact I have a lemon iMac on my hands, that i'm desperately attached to, I'm getting rid of it as soon as the warranty ends.

I'm considering 3 different machines:

PowerMac G5 from PowerMax.com
Mac mini from Apple.com
iMac from my Apple store

Mac mini pros and cons:

Pros:
Quiet, most of the time
Small, light



Cons:
VERY limited expandability (HD space is very crucial for me)
Not as powerful
Loud at times (I need quiet most of the time)
No iSight
Power Mac G5

Pros:
Best USB port layout for me
Powerful
Sits perfectly in my room
Beautifully huge
Quiet
Easily Expandable
Design Matches my monitor and External hard drive

In the middle, cons with little importance:
Heavy
PowerPC (even though it is very powerful, it could be dropped in the coming years)

Cons:
No iSight


iMac:

Pros:

All in one
Very nice looking
iSight built in

Cons:
Large, awkward to carry (the Power Mac is heavy, but because of handles not awkward)
Extremely Difficult to open, very limited expandability
Most expensive machine

The Power Mac G5 is a very attractive option, and is taking centre stage in my mind. A Mac Pro would be incredibly overkill, and rather expensive to operate due to its RAM properties. But is the G5 still a feasible machine?

I know many people use a G5, and the G5 would go with me for about 3 years. It's the most capable machine for me.
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Beta1

 
Member Since: Jul 11, 2007
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I picked up a PowerMac G5 last year, love it.

I got it because I needed alot of HD space and also wanted the option for a real graphics card and I couldn't get both of those with the MacMini or iMac and the MacPro was overkill for me as well.

The real question is what are you using the machine for? But if a MacPro is way overkill then I'm guessing you could find a PowerMac G5 (Single, Dual, or Quad) that was plenty fast for much less than a MacPro.

Anyway, I am a recent owner of a PowerMac G5 (Got it on here actually) and love it. Just as a side note because you mentioned it in your post, my G5 is alot quieter than I expected it

-PowerMac G5- 1.8Ghz G5, 1.5 GB RAM, 1TB HD (2x 500GB), GeForce FX 5200, Super Drive.
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iRye

 
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I'd be using the Power Mac for what I do right now, which essentially is Photoshop, FCP, iMovie, iTunes TV, Music, web browsing, and e-Mail.
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Beta1

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iRye View Post
I'd be using the Power Mac for what I do right now, which essentially is Photoshop, FCP, iMovie, iTunes TV, Music, web browsing, and e-Mail.
I use it for very similar things, I even do a little video editing and encoding on top of occasional Photoshop work as well and I never sit at my PowerMac and wish I was sitting in-front of an intel machine. Although I don't know how a machine like mine would handle alot of hardcore FCP use, using it occasionally like me, it works great. Also, like I mentioned before, PowerMacs come alot faster than mine. I know people that use Final Cut regularly as their job that are running Dual Processor G5's and love it.

Processor wise, its the slowest machine. But as far as I go, its fast enough. But more importantly for me, its very very cost effective if you have patience and really look for a good deal. I got the machine I have in my signature (w/o the TB of disk space) for like 750 shipped or something. And that was months ago.

-PowerMac G5- 1.8Ghz G5, 1.5 GB RAM, 1TB HD (2x 500GB), GeForce FX 5200, Super Drive.
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iRye

 
Member Since: Jan 01, 2007
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well, it does have 2 processors. i do the exact same as you, occasionally FCP and photoshop.
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Beta1

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iRye View Post
well, it does have 2 processors. i do the exact same as you, occasionally FCP and photoshop.
When you say "it", are you talking about a machine your looking at?

-PowerMac G5- 1.8Ghz G5, 1.5 GB RAM, 1TB HD (2x 500GB), GeForce FX 5200, Super Drive.
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Avenger2SER

 
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I considered buying a G5 instead of replacing my powerbook G4. This was primarily because the G4 was painfully slow using final cut studio 2. I opted for the Macbook Pro, and It's amazingly powerful.

I would say go for the iMac with a Core 2 in it, its already much faster than the old G5 (unless you find a quad in your price range), and you'll be able to maximize your investment since its the newest thing.

Given that the imac isn't as expandable as the G5, there's already plenty there to keep you happy for a long time. I use an external fw800 drive as a scratch disk on my MBP, I prefer this method of expansion because I can easily move it to another machine later.

Macbook Air 11" 4gb, 128gb SSD (2012)
Mac Mini i5 16gb, 128gb SSD, 1tb internal, 2x 1tb external (2012)
MacBook Pro,4gb,128gb SSD (early 2008)
iMac G3 600, iPad Mini Retina 64gb, iPhone 5, and more.
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dtravis7

 
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The PowerMac G5 is still a very good machine. The main Con I can think of is that support for the Power PC will be dropped from OSX down the line and then of course applications. Right now though it's still a very nice machine.

I find it interesting on the Mac Mini you call it Loud sometimes. Mine is NEVER loud even doing video compression. It's quieter most of the time than my iMac G5 in fact which is the most quiet machine I have ever owned during normal operation.
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bryphotoguy

 
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I would get a new or refurb iMac over the Power Mac. I've seen iMacs for $900. A used G5 will cost that much if you want one that's decent in my opinion.


January 2008 Member of the Month
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iRye

 
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I see. I have this conundrum though: (and no, it's not a conundrum full of nonsense and tomfoolery.)

Have you ever watched the Power Mac G4 Cube promo video? Jon Ive said that they wanted to reduce both visual and audible clutter. Then a designer for Apple's ad agency said "you shouldn't have to feel technology in the room. when you go to the computer, it should be a place where you can think, and think, and have an idea." The Mac mini is pretty much silent unless very stressed. It's also less awkward to carry around than the iMac.


Portability is one thing, because I can't stay in one place. It's just me. So I have to decide between a high end Mac mini and a black MacBook. they haven't had the issue where the case is terrible, for some reason they just seem more reliable. I love the look. I look awesome carrying a BlackBook around

The high end Mac mini has already been described. It does have some portability. It's pretty quiet. It's BYODKM. It's a mini.
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Avenger2SER

 
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The blackbook will be faster then the mini, so I would go with that.

Macbook Air 11" 4gb, 128gb SSD (2012)
Mac Mini i5 16gb, 128gb SSD, 1tb internal, 2x 1tb external (2012)
MacBook Pro,4gb,128gb SSD (early 2008)
iMac G3 600, iPad Mini Retina 64gb, iPhone 5, and more.
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bryphotoguy

 
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If you really need to take your computer away from the desk, I would get the MacBook but you have the Vostro, don't you? Why would you need two laptops?


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rokkitt

 
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Yah,

I am thinking the same thing


but, mini vs. g5

is isight really that big a deal? sorry, kinda a noob...


hmmmmmmm
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tux08902
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Out of curiosity, what OS are you running on your iMac?

Anyway, I'd recommend going for an iMac. Apple refurbs are often very cheap. Also, I think MacMall is running a sale right now.
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cbtlr

 
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Hi, I'd recommend you don't go the Powermac G5 Route, I own one a Dual 2.3 (4gb ram) and it's been a fantastic machine since I bought it in Early 2005, last year I bought a MacBook Pro 2.33, it's faster in every way, My powermac G5 can barely handle HDV content when it comes to applying some effects etc, forget using Color on it and Encoding video takes forever (however the elgato .h264 really has helped).
I'll probably get a Mac Pro down the track 8 Cores will keep me going for another 3 years and I'll sell that before the apple care runs out, the G5 applecare runs out in a few days so I'm a little worried bacause year three of life is a bad year for powermacs, In the last two months I required a new Logic Board (Motherboard) and a new Superdrive all covered under warranty prior to that it's been pure bliss to use, but should anything happen over the next few days I'm not covered and a new Logic Board costs about the same as a new iMac.
You can't use a Laptop as a desktop replacement if you have loads of external hard drives etc, breakout boxes, it's just a hassle so get a desktop,ideally both, but get a desktop Once and get it right, don't pay half of what a macpro costs only to have it die a week later with no warranty - pay twice as much as the G5 and go for a basic Mac Pro it's future proof for the next 3 years and safe if you have Applecare (which can only last 3 years from the date of purchase and cannot be renewed).
I love this G5 and it's hard to have to sell it but sadly I know it's days are over, time to part with it.
I recommend everybody that gets emotionally attached to equipment checks out a great documentary called "So Right There Wrong". It'll change your way of thinking, I needed to see it because I still had a Laserdisc Player and a Minidisc Player and a tascam 4 Track tape recorder that I wouldn't part with becasue I thought one day I'd use them again.
Don't get the G5, A Mac Pro will last you a great 3 years and have fantastic resale value in 3 years time like the G5's but the iMacs won't.
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