My first Mac in years ...

in Current Mac Hardware edited January 2014
Hey all,

I've been anticipating picking up a 15" G4 Notebook for some time with the catalyst being the upcoming revision that everyone's anticipating. For the past decade I've been a Windows user, and my current machine is a widescreen Athlon XP 2200+ notebook.

I was at a local PC & Mac vendor this morning and I saw they had stacks of refurbished blue and white G3 towers (G3/400, 128MB RAM, 6GB HD, Zip drive and CD-ROM) for $399 Canadian (about $280 US). I figured that this would be a good place to start (and see if the Mac would do everything I needed day-to-day) while waiting for the notebooks to become available, so I picked one up.

When I got home, I opened it up (fantastic case, by the way! Man, is it easy to upgrade this thing!) and put a second 15GB hard drive in, and added enough RAM to take it to 768MB. Closed it up, and booted into OS/X 10.1.

Now this is my FIRST experience with OS/X -- and I'm bloody impressed. Coming from a Windows world it took me no time at all to become accustomed to the interface. Wow. Elegant!

And what REALLY blew my mind was the performance. This thing is FAST! No, I haven't run Photoshop on it yet, but the system is VERY responsive -- It feels easily the equal of my Athlon 2200+ notebook in terms of system navigation. And all this out of a four year old system with a 400 MHz chip two generations behind.

Ok, I'm sold. I love it. Yes, I'm typing this on my notebook, but only because I haven't yet plugged the Mac into my network; I can't wait to pick up 10.2 and start running Safari plus all of the "i" apps.

Folks, maybe my impressions will change when I start running applications (gotta get Office loaded on the Mac, then we'll see!), but so far this Mac has NOTHING to apologize for -- and it was only $280 USD!

Pretty cool stuff,



  • Reply 1 of 11
    Upgrade to 10.2.6 now.

    Radeon 7000 PCI cards are cheap and will enable Quartz, but putting even more money into a 4 year old machine is normally something I don't recommend.

    If you like the Mac experience on that old box, you're gonna love your new 15" AlBook running Panther.
  • Reply 2 of 11
    ast3r3xast3r3x Posts: 5,012member
    You will have to use a hack to enable quartz because you don't have AGP. Also if you think that the G3 is as fast as your 2200+, then you are crazy. But I am glad you like it, you will think that your PBook is down right crazy.
  • Reply 3 of 11

    Ensign: Nope, I can't see me throwing any money into the G3; it's more to get used to the Mac environment and ensure that the Mac can do everything I need it to do (which, admittedly, consists primarily of document creation, some web prototyping and flowcharting. Boring life, eh?)

    And no, I have no illusions that the G3 is as fast or faster than the XP 2200+, but the system environment (OS/X on the Mac and Win XP on the PC) feels VERY similar in terms of performance: booting, navigating windows, opening folders, etc. etc. etc. I have no doubt that applications will run faster on the Athlon!

  • Reply 4 of 11
    Right about the AGP and Quartz, don't know what I was thinking. Putting money into the G3 is dumb anyway.

    Report back when you get 10.2.6 on it. If you think it's fast now...
  • Reply 5 of 11
    fluffyfluffy Posts: 361member
    What's the use of wasting 480 or $90 on Jaguar, when Panther is around the corner? If it is truly just an acclimatization machine it seems like an unnecessary expense.
  • Reply 6 of 11
    ... just a quick update ...

    Well, I'm sold. I'm trading the G3 in today on a G4 tower with a single 1.25GHz CPU. Why not a G5? A bit too expensive for me -- I still want to get a Mac notebook when the new revisions start to ship. The G4 is "only" $1799 Canadian (about $1200 USD) versus $2800 CDN for even a 1.6 GHz G5 (and if I went G5 I'd want the more "modern" motherboard, I'm thinking).

    Can't wait, folks! Even the G3 felt snappy to me -- in system operations, and even applications (although MS Word seemed to lag a bit).

    Quite frankly, I could care less if the G4 / G5 / Gwhatever CPU is faster / slower than <pick a x86 CPU>. OS X makes it FEEL faster -- here's an example:

    I transfer large .zip files (~600MB to ~1.1GB) at least daily, sometimes twice or three times daily. On my notebook, which has 768MB RAM, when I download one of these EVERYTHING slows down. Even screen redraw is painfully slow until Windows can "re-cache" common API calls.

    Not so on OS X. Sure, system response slowed down (on the G3, anyways), but it never "dragged"; never felt "slow". And that to me is more important day-to-day than finishing a PhotoShop Action 1/10 of a second quicker.

    Guess I'm officially a "Switcher" now?

  • Reply 7 of 11
    mcqmcq Posts: 1,543member
    That was quick... switching to a newer Mac in 3 days? Congrats!
  • Reply 8 of 11

    Originally posted by MCQ

    That was quick... switching to a newer Mac in 3 days? Congrats!

    Thanks! Actually, I had made up my mind to make the Mac "permanent" the day after I purchased the G3; it just took a couple of days to find a local dealer that had a tower in stock!

    Now to try to find some good deals on software ... \

  • Reply 9 of 11
    jbljbl Posts: 555member
    What kind of software are you looking for? And what kinds of deals? Cheaper alternatives to Office, or "cheaper" ways of obtaining Office?
  • Reply 10 of 11

    Originally posted by JBL

    What kind of software are you looking for? And what kinds of deals? Cheaper alternatives to Office, or "cheaper" ways of obtaining Office?

    I'm going to have to purchase Office, Photoshop and Illustrator to start -- I'm thinking eBay might be the best bet, both to purchase Mac versions of the applications as well as sell my PC software.

  • Reply 11 of 11

    Originally posted by bangstudios

    Guess I'm officially a "Switcher" now?

    Congratulations. You won't regret it.
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