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You are here: MacNN Forums > Enthusiast Zone > Classic Macs and Mac OS > Old PowerMacs for web browsing?

Old PowerMacs for web browsing?
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Junior Member
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Apr 28, 2002, 12:02 AM
 
Hey all,
I'm thinking of buying an old PM for my wife's studying. However the puter must also be able to connect to my ADSL router via RJ45 stick. So here's the question, What was the first PM to have a 10 b-t ethernet card with RJ45? Does the AAUI-15 card on the 8100 have it or is it the old fashioned one (which name I can't recall)?

Also, If I get an 8500 or 9500, will it be significantly slower for web browsing than my iMac DV SE /400mhz?

All input appriciated
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 12:12 AM
 
With the complexity of 'sites getting higher and higher as days go by, I think it would be terribly frustrating to browse on an older, non-G3 machine. If you use a simple browser like iCab, you should be fine. Beware of Internet Explorer 5 and Netscape 6.
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 12:37 AM
 
my 5400 is great for using the web, but the 6500 doesn't have ethernet, and thus DSL is not an option.
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 01:16 AM
 
Originally posted by seanyepez:
<STRONG>With the complexity of 'sites getting higher and higher as days go by, I think it would be terribly frustrating to browse on an older, non-G3 machine. If you use a simple browser like iCab, you should be fine. Beware of Internet Explorer 5 and Netscape 6. </STRONG>
&lt;rant&gt;
Geezus, what type of crack do you MacNN forum people smoke? Everyone's always whining about how slow this is and how slow that is compared to the latest $3000 setup. Look man, pre-G3 machines are perfectly capable of rendering (yes, even quickly) almost every web site out there including Flash, embedded QuickTime, and Java, particularly if you have a fast internet connection. Unless you are on some kind of crack that makes you uber-hyper, the extra 2 seconds or so just don't matter!!! I'm sick of it, absolutely sick of it!
&lt;/rant&gt;

To answer the original question, I use a PM 7500 604e 200Mhz with 256 megs, which is connected to a Linux box splitting my 512K (downstream) ADSL between the PowerMac and a Gigahertz PC. The PowerMac is only a hair slower when browsing the Internet, and is only noticeable if I am specifically looking to see which one is faster. In fact, I use the PowerMac as my primary machine whilst my brother plays Medal of Honor on the PC box (which eats a little bandwidth). Only Moz 1 (blows me away how quick it is!) on the PC box is significantly faster than IE 5 on the Mac.

To prove my point, I rudimentarily benched a few hefty sites after clearing cache:

IE5 iCab
ESPN 25s* (kills iCab)
Apple.com 7s 22s
Slashdot 6s 15s

*Includes redirect time from www.espn.com to msn.whatever.

Keep in mind that ESPN is an exception rather than the rule, and even Apple and Slashdot are more complex than most sites. Also, nota bene that my DSL connection is being shared with the Linux box and the Windows box, which are both using some of my 512K. On top of that, keep in mind that while the rest of these pages is still loading you can still be reading most of what fits in the window of the browser. Ironically, these times are also faster than what my friend gets on his G4 400Mhz running OS X, so there!

I'm sorry, but less than ten seconds to load Slashdot is more than I could ever ask for, and certainly much less time than it takes me to read the page!!! The sites I read the most (LEM, Washington Post, NYTimes, eBay, MacNN, New York Review of Book) load significantly faster.

For plain old browsing, word processing, etc, a Pre-G3 Mac is the perfect machine! Not counting the things which have very little effect on my browsing, I have invested a little over $100 on this 7500. That's about 1/3 of what it would cost me to buy a Beige G3, let alone a Blue & White or better.

I suggest picking up a 7x00 series machine with a 180 or 200 Mhz processor (you can always upgrade to G3 later). With as little bells & whistles as possible you should be able to get this around $50 or less. Then pump it up to 256 MB RAM for another $50 or so, and you're ready to roll. Should you budget a little more, consider getting 512k or 1MB cache, more VRAM, or even a G3 upgrade. The 7x00s can be upgraded to compete with almost any consumer-end Mac on the current market, including running OS X if you so desire. I'd stick with 8.6 or 9.0 so long as you have a lot of RAM.

Alright, enough out of me...

--Chris

PM 7500/604e 200Mhz
4 gig SCSI/2x CDROM
256 megs/512k cache
2MB VRAM
OS 8.6
(This machine rocks!)
Current: iMac 20" 2.4/4/320 / iMac G4 800
Portable: iPhone 3G White/16 / 12" PowerBook 1.5/1.25/80
Former: PowerMac G5 Dual 1.8 / iBook G3 700 / PM 7500, 3G iPod 10GB, 5.5G iPod 30GB
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 01:51 AM
 
Yeah Sean is making it sound worse than it is.... there's no need to get a G3 for just word processing and web.

Get a 7500(desktop) or 8500 (tower). They came with processors ranging from 100MHz to 180MHz. You can pick one up on eBay for about $40. Get at least a 1 gig drive and 64 megs of RAM to start with.

I'd get a 604e upgrade processor card for it. You can find a 233 MHz model for about another $30.

Run OS 8.6 on it. 9 uses a lot more RAM than you need for what you are going to run on it. If you get above 128 megs of RAM you can look at 9.x The cache is a good add on a list of upgrades this would be my last add-on.

The reason I'd get one of these two machines is that they are very reliable and are rated very well by most mac sites. They are also upgradable like no other of the old machines. VERY easy to add RAM, a second HD, a USB card and G3 upgrade cards are easy to find for this. Stay away from anything with a x100 or x200 model number.

Barack Obama: Four more years of the Carter Presidency
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 12:44 PM
 
Originally posted by Captain Obvious

Get a 7500(desktop) or 8500 (tower). They came with processors ranging from 100MHz to 180MHz. You can pick one up on eBay for about $40. Get at least a 1 gig drive and 64 megs of RAM to start with.

I'd get a 604e upgrade processor card for it. You can find a 233 MHz model for about another $30.
Absolutely!! I have a 7600 which you can get on ebay now for about $50. Added a 200mhz 604e and 512kb cache which together were $50. I use mainly OS X on the machine. Internet Explorer runs just fine!! In fact, if I use ADSL first on my Ti Powerbook 550 and then switch to the 7600, I am always amazed that the 7600 is not much slower in rendering pages. The time it takes your internet provider to get stuff to you over ethernet is far more important.

Also, the 7600 comes with AV in so you can watch TV or do simple frame grabs. Pretty amazing for very little money.

[ 04-28-2002: Message edited by: WizOSX ]
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 03:25 PM
 
It's that bad. I don't do drugs. It must be the fact that I'm just used to the insane performance of PC systems, then.

Either the 200-megahertz Power Mac is "on crack" or your line can't use the extra speed of a gigahertz PC. An ADSL line might not be able to use the extra performance that your gigahertz PC has.

Load the pages locally. Only then can you do a "rendering" test.

I'm sorry, but Wintel machines run IE considerably faster than Macs. What version of Windows are you running? Is your Windows machine running RC5 and games in the background?
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 04:05 PM
 
Originally posted by seanyepez

I'm sorry, but Wintel machines run IE considerably faster than Macs.
I would say "noticeably" faster but not "considerably" faster. But also, for what OddManOut was asking we don't need a controlled experiment in page rendering. We only need to know whether the machine producing pages acceptably fast. And, BTW, a 1 Ghz PC can't pull pages in off the line any faster than a 200 mhz Mac because the provider isn't going to get anything to you faster than what 10 baseT would allow.
     
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Apr 28, 2002, 08:48 PM
 
Thanks for the input guys. Actually I called a friend who has 9500 (thought he had ditched it) and he said the machine actually felt quite "snappy" with Os 8.6 and IE 4.5. I think I'll go for it. Heck, I think I still have my Colour StyleWriter somewhere
     
   
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