8 Replies Latest reply: Nov 28, 2006 6:07 AM by AndyO
Josh Kahane Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Hi

I wondered if theres any way of putting a better graphics card in my Mac Mini G4 (40Gb). And if I can what cards can I fit in it and is there any guides?

Thanks...

Mac Mini G4, Mac OS X (10.4.8), Sony Handycam, FCP 5, Logic Express 7
  • jped Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
    i wondered that too and the shop in my town that fixes apple (not a apple store) said that the whole logic board would need to be replaced to change the graphics in it but there isnt any upgrades for it graphics
  • ParentalUnit Level 4 Level 4 (1,440 points)
    Josh,

    Where there are competent engineers, there is a way. However, the
    video card on the mini is integrated into the motherboard.

    There are no add-on cards available.

    The only video upgrade I know of for the G4 mini is the "stealth" upgrade
    that Apple did before releasing Intel minis: "Stealth" upgrade minis came
    with 64MB rather than 32MB of video RAM.

    -Wayne

       
  • deashute Level 1 Level 1 (130 points)
    ParentalUnit,

    Actually, the G4 mini's had Radeon 9200 graphics cards, they weren't integrated until the minis' switch to Intel. There must be a way to upgrade, though. It might be hard, involve a soldering iron, or just be almost impossible, but there's got to be a way

    Dean
  • BGreg Level 6 Level 6 (17,500 points)
    Actually, the G4 mini's had Radeon 9200 graphics
    cards, they weren't integrated until the minis'
    switch to Intel.


    A mac mini G4 Apple developers note suggests integration on the logic board. From page 18:

    The display subsystem consists of a graphics controller IC and 32 MB of DDR on the main logic board. The graphics controller IC is an ATI Radeon 9200.
  • djfinnegan Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Would it be possible to upgrade to 64 mb of Video RAM? Rather than upgrading the whole video card?
  • ParentalUnit Level 4 Level 4 (1,440 points)
    djfinnegan,

    It's not a separate card. It's part of the motherboard. Attached. Soldered in.

    Even if you are extremely handy with a soldering gun and don't fry the
    motherboard or traces near the memory, it's highly unlikely that the earlier
    revision motherboards would even recognize additional VRAM.

    If you want more VRAM, get a stealth upgrade mini.

    Or get an Intel mini.

    -Wayne
  • ParentalUnit Level 4 Level 4 (1,440 points)
    Dean,

    Here's a picture of the G4 mini motherboard. The thing labeled ATI is the graphics processor.

    -Wayne

       
  • AndyO Level 6 Level 6 (17,045 points)
    I wondered if theres any way of putting a better
    graphics card in my Mac Mini G4 (40Gb). And if I can
    what cards can I fit in it and is there any guides?


    Despite the suggestion that the G4 minis have an ATI 9200 graphics 'card' and that there should therefore be a way to either replace it or upgrade it, the graphics subsystem is not a separate component at all. It is, as the link Wayne provided clearly shows, integrated onto the motherboard of the mini and as such could only be upgraded by replacing the motherboard itself since it is barely possible that a domestic user or field engineer would have the skill to remove existing components, even if replacement with an alternative was technically possible.

    Since there is no alternative motherboard, other than the so-called 'stealth' units which had the same graphics subsystem but with 64Mb instead of 32Mb dedicated video RAM (and I've yet to really note any significant impact that memory increase has given when comparing my two G4 minis) there is no alternative to the graphics 'card' you already have without replacing the entire system.