Skip navigation

Has Mac left behind "PowerPC" processors in favor of Intel processors?

6535 Views 28 Replies Latest reply: Aug 21, 2012 5:44 AM by pgoodwin RSS
1 2 Previous Next
tmelbi Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Jan 10, 2012 4:57 PM

Can someone help and advice with some basic information? I'm running 10.5.8 on my G5, but that appears to be the END of the OS upgrades for any PowerPC processor, correct? Does this mean my former top of the line G5 is now a dinosaur and its time to move one to the Intel processor world? My favorite applications (MS Office for Mac and a music notation program Sibelius) are now ONLY making upgrades that work with Snow Leopard and Lion. Seriously, is my G5 nearly obsolete?

PowerMac, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • steve359 Level 6 Level 6 (12,035 points)

    PowerPC drop-off was nearly 6 years ago.


    In one regard, you *could* see your system as *obsolete*.


    But consider also that no system is obsolete as long as it still works.


    Some posters still keep their PPC systems around for applications they need but have no upgrades.


    I have one frien who *needs* a Windows 98 video-editing application because there has been no upgrade that he likes.  So he keeps a Windows 98 system running alongside Windows 7 systems.


    In short, "obsolete" depends on you.

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10 (114,825 points)

    Yes, our G5s are obsolete, except mine still does everything I need to.


    10.5.8 is the highest OS they'll ever get.


    Apple no longer repairs G5s.

  • Allan Eckert Level 8 Level 8 (39,550 points)

    Yes. At the time in late 2005 when Apple announced their plans to migrate to Intel it was a very big thing. Of course that was some time ago.



  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10 (114,825 points)

    Well, Apple never announced any dropoff, in fact the big push was how easy it was to make "Universal Apps", that could run on either PPC or Intel.


    A few still do, notably DiskWarrior & Intech SpeedTools Pro.

  • Ramón G Castañeda Level 4 Level 4 (1,445 points)

    tmelbi wrote:


    …Do you remember if there was a lot of press about the "PowerPC dropoff"? I certainly don't remember Apple warning me that they would be going in a different direction.

    You must have been living in a very remote and isolated place.  Serving in Afghanistan or Iraq, maybe?


    Even if that were the case, it's still quite remarkable that you missed the long and heated discussions. 

  • wayne146 Calculating status...

    It would seem to me that "3rd. party suppliers" would start building new OS systems for the millions of older PPC's in everyone's homes & businesses. If it's been 6 years already, surely patents will run out in short order freeing "3rd. party vendors" or "freelance" developers to produce new and exciting OS systems and hardware that would be very marketable for years to come.


    I'm thinking from my position as a car guy, that aftermarket stuff for the Muscle Car Era cars makes them better than produced, more fun to drive, faster, better brakes, better cornering. Everything the original was only mediocre in doing as originally produced. Camaro's, Chevelle's, Mustang's and Mopars all benefited from the aftermarket producers, you can buy nearly everything for any of these cars to fully restore even the most rusted or wrecked vehicle back to better than showroom condition and performance.


    Sounds like a chance to make a real contribution to world buy eliminating so many machines from being recycled into other products and/or adding to land fills. And making a profitable business for years to come, while having the thanks of millions who love their ppc's like family.


    Any thoughts on this topic are welcomed.    ....  just thoughts I'm putting out there for debate or comments, and idea's. .....   (Hey, it's better than politics these days !!)

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10 (114,825 points)

    I have a few Apps that can outclass today's offerings on my Ataris, or Atari emulators.


    You can input your own codes, UPC, use a UPC Pen/Wand/Scanner, & fax the results, send them via eMail or ftp, or even Voice to a recorder. You can search 42 different ways, you can sort on 19 differnt fields in under 2 seconds on an 8 MHz Arari, it runs in as little as 2.5 MB of RAM for upto 10,000 items, (far more if you have 4 MB of RAM), print to several Printers, Export to CSV or DB format, has a built in Customer DB with severl functions, keeps track of Backorders & out of stock, & interfaces with several other of my PRGs like for Accounting. ...

  • wayne146 Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)

    BDAqua, You know me, and what your showing and talking about is "Greek" to me (?) as I know mechanical stuff, and having NEVER had, or will ever have a Gaming system, those abbreviated names mean nothing to me.


    What I was thinking would be new, fresh, break through operating systems that would bring all G 4's, Q S's, MDD's, and G 5's into the future with App's that would make them good for another 10 to 20 years, opening the market for faster CPU's, memory of greater Mb's, all from outside sources. All with newer technology than when they were first made 6, 8, or 10 yrs. ago.


    With all the knowledge of laid off or retired geniuses who could do this in their sleep, it would seem to be a "NO BRAINER" that it could happen. Ex-Axxbe employee's looking for something meaningful could build a new flash type player that would stay current for PPC's, even a cross platform type that would set a new standard for the industry. ....


    Maybe like the way Mozilla is structured. ... I don't know myself, but it seems possible.


    Imagine new OS's with names like BEAR, BROWN BEAR, BLACK BEAR, GRIZZLY and KODAK, or simply by #'s like 125, 250, 350, 500, 650, 750 ect.    ....  OK, They pick the names, ... Just some idea's.


    And it's a dream to think it would happen, BUT IT WOULD BE A SELLER ..... How many millions of machines are out here, from some G3's and all G4's on up ??  ....  I don't know, but world wide sales should be a big #.


    Think of all the old machines sitting in closets, basements, spare rooms, and under desks that are there because their owners can't bear to put their beloved family member out to pasture.


    New mother boards (even Intel type M/B's ?), faster more reliable cpu's, and memory, OS systems and Apps. would be a whole new aftermarket bonanza.


    Hope I don't get flagged for being a dreamer here, I'm just dreaming of things not being wasted, being a hoarder at heart.

  • Klaus1 Level 8 Level 8 (43,475 points)

    Seriously, is my G5 nearly obsolete?


    There are two versions of 'obsolete':


    1. If your G5 still does what you purchased it to do, it is not obsolete. If you want to do more than that, and find you can't, it is.


    2. If Apple says it is obsolete (and do now say that) it means you may not be able to get spare parts for it or get it repaired:


    Obsolete products are those that were discontinued more than seven years ago. Apple has discontinued all hardware service for obsolete products with no exceptions. Service providers cannot order parts for obsolete products. These include ALL G4 models. On November 23, 2011 all G5 models were declared as 'vintage'. Obsolescence cannot be far behind.

    iMac iSight G5 2.1 GHz, QT Pro 7.7, Mac OS X (10.5.8), iLife 9 but iMovie 6, Safari 5.0.6
  • Glen Doggett Level 4 Level 4 (1,780 points)

    tmelbi wrote:


    ... I'm running 10.5.8 on my G5, but that appears to be the END of the OS upgrades for any PowerPC processor, correct? ...

    the end of OS upgrades from Apple maybe, but you can always "upgrade" to linux!



    though many GNU/linux packages themselves run under Mac OS X and are still available and get regular updates through fink or macports



    Wait a minute, now when did Apple leave behind the Motorola m68k in favor of the PPC?  "Fat" binaries forever!

  • Deborah Terreson Level 3 Level 3 (940 points)

    No, your compuer is NOT obsolete.. Now it is what I like to call 'unsupported' which means that you can do anything you want to it!


    Mod the case, mod the OS - heck switch the OS (BeOs anyone?), and just play, play, play!


    Still, that top-of-the line G5 is a righteous machine. I wouldn't mind one to use as a video server for the home network.

  • steve359 Level 6 Level 6 (12,035 points)

    Couple of point:


    • Even the newest machines have hardware issues (even my 2011 system I expected will have *some* issue given enough time).
    • People with the newest systems are playing "upgrade your applications" game becaue Lion does not support many existing applications people need
    • If you buy the newest systems *just to keep up*, you are choosing to play these games


    If you are "fat, dumb and happy" with a system that does what you need it to do, then stop worrying and plan that ski weekend with your friends.

  • blasterdaddy Calculating status...

    This is a very interesting forum series.


    I just recieved 3 G5s from a business who just updated their hardware to Powerbooks.  These machines are all power houses, 8gig memory in all and hugh hard drives.  All Dual CPU 2.3 ghz CPUs.


    Now these are faster than any of my PCs except for my wifes and my work laptops.  I am using them to train myself and my wife on Macs.  A couple of observations.


    1. Planned obsolence is Apples Buiness Plan.  They really do build wonderful products but stop supporting them after a period of time.  i.e. not being able to run the latest iTunes on my G5 is nuts.  But I can run the latest iTunes on my 12 year old PC running Windows XP.

    2. Making OS releases dependant on hardware builds a robust hardware/software combination.  So why not continue to support PPC products with a concurrent release of the OSX OS rather than have a cut off point at 10.5.11.

    3. The price of Apple products is directly related to its planned obsolence plan.  I have read so many times in these forums,


    OSX 10.5 does not support that, you will need to upgrade to a current Apple Product.  Now with the new price of a G5 being "The Power Mac G5, with a suggested retail price of $2,999 (US)" and 7 years later to be told I need to purchase a new product, and to replace a G5 with a new product that matches it would be the MAC Pro, with runs between 2500 to 3800 dollars.  WOW, considering I can replace the G5 with an equilivant PC product for maybe a grand.


    I can understand product dedication, but only to a point, if I owned a 1962 Corvette, that I paid 3000 dollars for new, and told I would have to buy a new Corvette, at 60k REALLY.  I know thats not apples to apples but in this economy.


    Don't get me wrong, I like the G5s, they are fantastic machines, but I am afraid, I will not be one of the legions who go out and buy a brand new apple.



1 2 Previous Next


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.