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

iMac - Questions Re Performance


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joomlales

 
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Hello all:

My first post - so be gentle.

I have the chance of inheriting my wife's iMac (800 Mhz Power PC G4). It has a 75 Gig drive with 768 megs of DRAM - running OS-X version 10.4.10.

I am considering using this machine as a multi-media device.

Uses would be:
  • iTunes
  • Torrent downloads
  • And watching videos

My initial testing finds the machine to be somewhat sluggish as compared to my newer laptop (it's a PC -sorry).

I'd appreciate comments on the configuration and suggestions on what to do to speed things up a bit. I find that even downloaded videos are clipping at times. Also, apart from usability, is there any reason to upgrade to Leopard?

Any suggestions / advice would be appreciated.

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Welcome to Mac-Forums, joomlales.

Keeping in mind that you are comparing a recent computer with the iMac which was introduced in July 2002 (so almost 5 and a half years ago), no way you'll get the same performance as your Win Notebook.

For one thing, online videos have become much more elaborate and heavier in almost 6 years!

And that iMac model won't make the cut for Leopard: here are the system requirements for Leopard. For a G4, the slowest CPU that is supported is 867MHz.
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bryphotoguy

 
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It certainly couldn't hurt to upgrade it to 2GB of RAM which will be about $150.
It will handle what you want it to do but it will always be sluggish.


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MacHeadCase
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Bryan, can you really upgrade the iMac 800 Mhz Power PC G4 to 2GB of RAM? I thought the max was 1 GB (and this is stretching it because the factory installed module has to be pulled out by a tech and changed with a 512MB module).

Got this from OWC.



Edited to add:

This is what LowEndMac has to say:

Quote:
RAM: 128/256 MB, expandable to 1 GB using one user accessible 144-pin PC133 SODIMM (up to 512 MB) and one 168-pin PC133 DIMM (also up to 512 MB)
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Sorry about that. I am on my phone and don't have access to Mactracker. I assumed it took PC2100 memory or something not PC133. Man, Apple used that RAM in the iMac?


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Unfortunately, there's very little that can be done to speed that machine up. Compared to today's computers, the PPC G4 is very outdated, and very slow. And on that model, it's soldered to the board so there's no way to upgrade it.

There are two upgrades that you can make-both of which will help-but neither one of them is going to transform the system into some blazing fast machine. One is to max out the RAM at 1GB, the other is to upgrade the hard drive with a newer, faster drive. Upgrading the drive will require disassembling the computer, and depending on how the 768MB is installed (e.g. if the machine was bought with 512 and a 256 was added or if it was bought with 256 and a 512 was added), that will also require disassembling the computer.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryphotoguy View Post
Sorry about that. I am on my phone and don't have access to Mactracker. I assumed it took PC2100 memory or something not PC133. Man, Apple used that RAM in the iMac?
Well that was almost 6 years ago, Bryan!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacHeadCase View Post
Well that was almost 6 years ago, Bryan!
Yeah, I know you said it was introduced in mid 2002. A PC I built then used PC2100.


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joomlales

 
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Hi,

I have just acquired an iMac from my wife (Power PC G4 - 800 MHz).

The machine works quite well. However I find that the USB port is extremely slow. I am transferring her data to a LACIE portable drive and it is taking forever (hours) to copy 8 gigs of data. The transfer rate when I connect the USB drive to her new machine is quite fast. So I am left to believe that my USB port on the iMAC is old and slow. When I look in the System Profiler I can get details on the port. But they mean nothing to me.

Can anyone tell me how to interpret what I see in the profiler and if there are and suggestions on how to speed up the port?

Many thanks!

Les
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I would assume the imac version you have is USB 1.0 / 1.1

This was the first generation of USB. USB 2.0 is much faster and thats why its faster on the newer models.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christm View Post
I would assume the imac version you have is USB 1.0 / 1.1

This was the first generation of USB. USB 2.0 is much faster and thats why its faster on the newer models.
I agree - even though the System Profiler does not explicitly state that. Any suggestions on "options"? Has anyone heard of a way to get a USB 2 LACIE drive to connect to a Firewire port? The iMAC has 2 of those!

Thanks for the feedback.

Les
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All PowerMac G4's had USB 1.1. It supports up to 10kbps. USB 2.0 (400kbps) or Hi-Speed USB (what you're used to) wasn't introduced until the G5 PowerMac.
To make the PowerMac USB 2.0 complient, you need to buy a PCI card. If your HD supports FireWire, use that anyways. It is a faster connection than USB 2.0.

Sorry, read the OP incorrectly. The iMac didn't support USB 2.0 until the 1GHz model. I don't know of a USB to FireWire adapter. The do make USB to Ethernet adapters but I don't know how that'd work.


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joomlales

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryphotoguy View Post
All PowerMac G4's had USB 1.1. It supports up to 10kbps. USB 2.0 (400kbps) or Hi-Speed USB (what you're used to) wasn't introduced until the G5 PowerMac.
To make the PowerMac USB 2.0 complient, you need to buy a PCI card. If your HD supports FireWire, use that anyways. It is a faster connection than USB 2.0.

Sorry, read the OP incorrectly. The iMac didn't support USB 2.0 until the 1GHz model. I don't know of a USB to FireWire adapter. The do make USB to Ethernet adapters but I don't know how that'd work.
Thanks this is great information. Regarding your comment:"To make the PowerMac USB 2.0 compliant, you need to buy a PCI card". Can someone tell me more about this option? Where would I even install the PCI card? This Mac looks like there is no real estate to do so.

Thanks again - Les
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joomlales View Post
Thanks this is great information. Regarding your comment:"To make the PowerMac USB 2.0 compliant, you need to buy a PCI card". Can someone tell me more about this option? Where would I even install the PCI card? This Mac looks like there is no real estate to do so.

Thanks again - Les
Like I said, I misread your original post. I thought you had a PowerMac. You have an iMac, so all that info is useless.
Posting replies from an iPhone is a challenge (no joke.)
You cannot add a PCI card to an iMac. The 800MHz does not support 2.0 in any way I can think of.
Like I did say, I know of a USB/ Ethernet adapter. You could possibly network the HD and access info that way.


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joomlales

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryphotoguy View Post
Like I said, I misread your original post. I thought you had a PowerMac. You have an iMac, so all that info is useless.
Posting replies from an iPhone is a challenge (no joke.)
You cannot add a PCI card to an iMac. The 800MHz does not support 2.0 in any way I can think of.
Like I did say, I know of a USB/ Ethernet adapter. You could possibly network the HD and access info that way.
Got it - Thanks for the help and information. I just realized that I could use one of my old iPODs to get the data I need out of the machine using the Firewire port. It's humming along as I type this message.

L
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