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

New iMac vs. New Mini vs. Used G4


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o0LiquidDark0o

 
Member Since: Jul 03, 2007
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Hello, guys. I'm glad to have become a member here and I am hoping that some of you might help me out with a decision that I have to make.

As a student of video production, I've been working on Macs for the past 4 years. Now that I'm nearing the end of my college education I've been presented with some great opportunities to do freelance production work. So, it's time for me to finally buy a Mac. I'm really considering three options here:

- Used dual 1.25ghz PowerMac G4. 256mb RAM. 80GB hard drive. DVD-RW.
- $849 + $65 (wireless card) = $914

- New 1.83ghz Mini Mac. 512mb RAM. 80GB hard drive. DVD-RW.
- $779 + $110 (2GB RAM) + $150 (23" monitor) = $1,039

- New 17-inch 2.0ghz iMac. 1GB RAM. 160GB hard drive. DVD-RW.
- $1,099 + $110 (2GB RAM) = $1,209

*Mini Mac and iMac prices are with student discount.

I would upgrade the machine to 2GB of RAM regardless of which I choose. I like the idea of getting the used G4 because:
- I can save quite a bit of money.
- I already have 2GB of spare RAM for the G4.
- I can install my spare hard drive in it.
- I already have two spare monitors for my dual-monitor setup.

So, what do you guys think? Please keep in mind that I am on a fairly limited budget so cost is important to me. Performance-wise, how will the three computers compare? Also, is there any expansion bays in the iMac to add another hard drive? Thanks, guys. I appreciate your help very much!
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bryphotoguy

 
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Member Since: Feb 02, 2007
Location: Chicago, IL
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Your quote for a dual 1.25Ghz MDD PowerMac is way too high. I think they sell $500-600 loaded on eBay. But the PowerMac is the way to go because you can add more to it later(HD's, RAM, Vid Cards.) However, the 1.25GHz is older and sorta slow. I think it only supports USB 1. Check prices on G5 1.6 or 1.8Ghz. I think I saw a G5 1.6Ghz for a buy it now of $700 a few weeks ago.
Personally, those Mac stores online that sell used Macs aren't very helpful for pricing. They add about 30% to what they're worth.
Bryan


January 2008 Member of the Month
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o0LiquidDark0o

 
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So for the money you think I should try and find a used G5? I talked to a co-worker of mine who is pretty big into Macs and he seemed to think that the new iMac would be by far the best computer I could get in that price range. Mostly because of the Intel Core 2 Duo processor. What do you guys think?
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kgeier82

 
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id go with the mini, because i dont really like the imacs, especially with a 17" screen.

there are mini's in the apple refurb store for 700, just add ram.

2.4ghz Unibody | Hitachi 320GB 7200 | 256MB 9600gt
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Alexis

 
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You get what you pay for at the end of the day. If you want a G4, you need to get it cheap. A G5 iMac would be a good compromise, but if you're shelling out $1000+, in the long run you'd benefit from an Intel machine because PPC programs will be phased out at some point.
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smurfy

 
Member Since: Apr 19, 2007
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I heard the new iMacs are only slightly slower than PowerMac G5s, and that was the Core Duo ones. You should probably get a new iMac. The mini is the only 32 bit Mac, and therefore it won't be able to utilize Leopard's 64 bit power.
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Alexis

 
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Quote:
I heard the new iMacs are only slightly slower than PowerMac G5s, and that was the Core Duo ones.
The Core Duo and Core2Duo are benchmarked faster than the G5s for everything apart from when the Intels run Power PC programs through the invisible emulation software within OS X.
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o0LiquidDark0o

 
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Hi guys. So I made a decision and made a purchase. I got to thinking: "This computer is really only going to be used for editing the freelance productions that I get. They may not last, who knows? Even if they do, the computer will still get a fairly small amount of usage. I've been leaning towards the Power Macs the entire time so I'm just going to go with one."

I searched around on eBay. Found a dual G4 that I liked, bid at the last second ( ), and came up with a pretty good computer at a pretty good price. Link. Let me know what you guys think. I personally feel that I got a pretty awesome deal.
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bryphotoguy

 
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Yea, it's decent and that's about what they sell for on eBay for a dual 1.25GHz.
btw, that computer should be able to hold 4GB PC2700 RAM, not 2GB like he said. You can also stick 4HD's in those bad boys.
You'll like it. I was messing with a dual 1.25Ghz I might be picking up at work and they pack a good punch.
The MDD's are the loudest Macs made but it didn't bother me.
Bryan


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Chilbear

 
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Member Since: Jun 14, 2007
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I wished I had read the post earlier than your buy. You will enjoy the machine. Buying over the border is unwise because you will be tagged with customs and GST probably. Let us know.

As a production newbie remember the following for your next purchase - for production always go as fast as you can afford. Time is money. Sacrificing time for money will cost you in your pleasure time being consumed. The G4 is fine but the Front side Bus speed is the bottleneck. I have a G4867 and iMac24, very different animals and the difference is very obvious when switching between them.

Use the G4 and get going but move it in less than a year before all value disappears then lease a Mac and you will not have to worry about the value - you have only to worry about how much you can make. Best of luck.
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