9 Replies Latest reply: Sep 20, 2008 2:49 AM by japamac
SteMacRyan Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Hi new to this forum.

I've take home an unused, unloved Power Mac G4 FW800 from work and would love to hear any suggestions anyone may  have to get it running @ its optimum without forking out for a new Processor. I wont be doing any gaming on it, plan using it for Media and Design like Final Cut Express4, Photoshop and Illustator and for music and movies.

Its has a Dual 1.25Ghz Processor, 167Mhz Bus, ive installed a new ATI 9600PRO Graphic Card and bumped the RAM up to its 2GB max and have an external 500GB 7200RPM Iomega FireWire HDD. I also got a Philips 19in Wide LCD 1440x900 for cheap.

This is turning into a nice little hobby so any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated .

Can it run on Leopard and would this be beneficial?

Power Mac G4 FW800
  • Thomas Bryant Level 6 Level 6 (13,865 points)
    Hi! Sounds like you are good to go! Yes, it will run Leopard. You've done about everything to it except for increasing the processor to about 1.8ghz. You would notice some speed improvement but it should do what you want. Tom
  • japamac Level 7 Level 7 (24,390 points)

    Welcome to Discussions!

    Sounds like you have set the machine up nicely.
    Maxing the RAM is always good in a G4, and the graphics card is beneficial.
    The processors are plenty for most common tasks, and even if you wanted too, there really aren't any super powerful upgrade options for the MDD. A dual 7447A 1.8ghz is available, but for the money, not that much performance gain.

    Replacing the internal hard drive would probably be about all that is left to do.
    The current western Digital drives are very good, with the WD Caviar Blue offering very good performance for ATA drives.

    As for the Leopard question, it really is a matter of software compatibility. The hardware is fine for Leopard. If the software that you wish to use has good compatibility in Leopard, then Leopard is a nice upgrade.
    Leopard is a very nice OS.
  • SteMacRyan Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for quick response guys, will look into replacing internal HD and get a hold of Leopard, also may look video cards?
  • japamac Level 7 Level 7 (24,390 points)
    also may look video cards?

    With the 9600, then you at least have Core Image support for Tiger, Leopard, and app's that need it.
    It isn't a powerful card, so there is room for improvement.

    Cards that will boost graphics processing ability are the Radeon 9800 Pro or XT, Radeon X800, Geforce 6800 GT or Ultra, and the Geforce 7800GS.

    Only the 9800 Pro is available in a ready made 4x AGP capable Mac edition.

    All others are PC cards that need to be flashed to Mac ROM, and have pins #3 and #11 taped (or otherwise disabled) to use in a 4x AGP system.

    The PC cards can be flashed (if you are willing and able) or, purchased ready made from sellers on eBay.
    Flashed PC cards are a very good option in the desert of Mac AGP graphics cards.

    REVIEW: ATI Radeon X800 XT Mac Edition versus GeForce 6800 Ultra and Others

    GeForce 7800 GS for G4 Power Macs (AGP)
  • bendystrawboy Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    the machine is pretty much maxed out, the only increased you could possibly see are from a processor, but the cost of it and your increase in performance wouldn't be worthwhile.

    if you're not happy with the machine how it is id' recommend selling it and getting an old g5, which will be snappier in every regard.

    updating the processor on the MDD's just arent worth it due to the low cost of some of the older g5 towers.
  • Nadav Level 3 Level 3 (565 points)

    Are there any real differences between the AGP slot in the FW800 MDDs versus the standard MDDs? I was told that the Radeon x850t will work in the FW800 models, but not in the regular MDDs - the ones that boot in OS 9.2.2
  • (Mac)Gyver Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
    Hi i`am also new in this forum

    I have very similar machine than yours --> it has Dual 1ghz processor, 2gb ram, external 500gb sata HDD with sata-pci card, Radeon 9800 Pro 256mb and Benq wide LCD 22". I also have usb2-card, wlan-card, bluetooth and other "accessories".

    I use it as my main machine and running currently leopard 10.5.5 with it. I`am very pleased with its performance, leopard runs like champ and i do picture editing, imovie and even world of warcraft runs great. With this machine i go an year or more, before i change to mac pro or something like that
  • Nadav Level 3 Level 3 (565 points)

    Quick question.. Does the Radeon X800 XT work in the 2003 MDD models? Someone told me that there is a difference between the AGP SLOTS of the FW800 and FW400 models, is this true? He also told me that he tested the X800 XT in the FW400 model and it wouldn't boot.
  • japamac Level 7 Level 7 (24,390 points)
    Hi Nadav-

    Rather than threadjack, please post a new thread, as this question is a different topic.