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Looking for an older mac? what should i get?
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Jan 27, 2002, 04:01 PM
 
I am looking at buying another mac, just for writing maybe paying some old mac games...i have looked at a few different online dealers trying to find something but i honestly dont know which machine is good...seems to me i have heard in the past that some of the older macs weren't that good...i was looking at a performa all-in-one...if anyone has one or knows anything about performa's please tell me your experiences. and if anyone knows any good places to buy also...thanks

[ 01-27-2002: Message edited by: macthelastredman ]
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Jan 27, 2002, 08:20 PM
 
try checking some of the older Mac sites for more info on the older machines...http://www.lowendmac.netweb page

as far as older 68k machines the quadra 840AV is the fast's 68k..
on the PowerPC side a 8500 or 9600 is worth looking at.
     
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Jan 28, 2002, 10:00 AM
 
For the greatest flexibility, I'd go with a 7300,7600, 8600, or 9600. These machines are g3/g4 upgradeable, have the best flexibility in accessing the upgrades and motherboard.

They perform admirably with OSX when you have an upgrade card installed (I recommend the G3, 400mHz or better) The G4s won't be really able to shine to their potential in these machines, but the G3s do wonders for them.

These machines have PCI, which means they can run system 7.5 all the way through OSX10.12 with the help of the install software from Ryan Rempel called XPostFacto, which allows for installation onto a SCSI drive connected to the internal or external built-in bus.

You can put a radeon 3d card in these and get great performance from these machines.

Most of the performa models in the older series (at least the PPC ones) had issues with any modern updates you may want. Either in expandability or upgradeability. But it looks like you may not care to upgrade these machines if they are for older games. If you have a PC there's a software mac emulator that runs all 68k software and works really well. Its called, "Basilisk II" and can even share the network card in your PC to get on the internet or use your modem to dialup.

For a true mac, the models I've mentioned for PCI and PPC software are what I consider the best. For 68k models I'd go with the Performa 580(i believe) that was an 'all-in-one' style with the monitor built ontop of the computer. They had CD-ROMs and floppy in the front with potentially having ethernet built-in or at least the localtalk. They perform fairly well and could handle most older software that the PPC machines may not run. While MOST software will still run in OS9 there are a few that don't and really need the 68k machines (such as the older favorite 'star wars' and others).

Good luck, you should be able to find what you need for a bargain (less than $200 if you don't need a monitor with the PPCs).
     
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Jan 28, 2002, 07:00 PM
 
I have a 7600 that works incredibly well. In fact, I run OS X on it even without a G3 upgrade card and it runs quite well. The 7600 is a lot of fun for very little money and one nice thing about it is that many of them came with AV input! So you can plug a VCR into it, watch TV on your monitor, grab frames from a VCR or even a Hi8 videocam. 7600's sell on ebay now for about $100!! Although my main machine is a Ti Powerbook, I'm in the process of upgrading the 7600 with "bits and pieces" that I'm picking up in ebay. I'm trying to figure out what used pieces will give the most bang for the buck (without shelling out $200 for a G3 upgrade card)! I'll keep you posted on the results.
     
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Jan 29, 2002, 12:18 PM
 
Just for old games & word processing, I'd recommedn a PowerMac 5400. It's an all-in-one and you can install a G3 upgrade card if you want. RAm max-es out at around 136MB, but I use on for lots of things and it's a superb machine. The advantage is the case design--it takes up v. little space.
     
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Jan 29, 2002, 12:46 PM
 
Just for fun read today's article in Lowendmac:
http://www.lowendmac.com/uk/02/0129.html
     
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Jan 29, 2002, 03:02 PM
 
Originally posted by Tristrami:
<STRONG>Just for old games & word processing, I'd recommedn a PowerMac 5400. It's an all-in-one and you can install a G3 upgrade card if you want. RAm max-es out at around 136MB, but I use on for lots of things and it's a superb machine. The advantage is the case design--it takes up v. little space.</STRONG>
I can echo that. Has a PCI slot for Firewire/USB card if you want it later. Put a TV card and an A/V input card in it (and keep your slot) and you can use the remote control to playback Video CDs and use it to watch a VCR signal. Add an antenna and you've got a TV. The AV system comes with AvidCinema, and you can edit and save movies with that (it's harder to use than iMovie, but it does so much more). Then upgrade to a G3 with the L2 upgrade from Sonnet. Nice machine. You can even add an external monitor if you don't like the built-in 15".

You could try the 6300/160. Same machine, without a monitor, basically. Or the 6400/6500 series. Best reason -- they're cheap. Next best -- they use cheap IDE drives. Mine has a 20G Maxtor in it, runs OS 9.0.4, does great.

You want to avoid any older machine that will only boot from a SCSI hard drive, because those are getting harder to buy.
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Jan 29, 2002, 06:36 PM
 
I would not get the 5400 or the 6300. I mean its a decent machine but its not as easy to upgradable as people would like you to think. All-in-ones are great in concept but limit you in some areas. For instance the video RAM is not upgradable, so if you want to even bump it up to 4 megs its not possible. You want to get an old VooDoo video card or an ATI so you can play some newer games? Well you have to use that ONE PCI slot you have, meaning you can't get a Firewire or USB card, although I think the 6400 has two PCI slots.

I like the 7500 or the 7600, its very upgradeable, and much easier to open up to install the upgrades. They have 3 PCI slots, and the 604 processor card has more manufactures out there who make G3 cards for it. That means its easier to find G3 cards and the cost would be lower than buying an L2 upgrade card for the 54/6300. I have a ATI video card, a USB card, and a Sonnet G3 card in mine and I still have an open PCI slot if I wanted to install something else. Then there are RAM slots, the 75/7600 have 8 slots open so if you have old RAM or want to buy some more its simple to add more, I think the all in one has two RAM slots.

If the monitor dies on the 5400 its going to cost a fortune to replace it. The only plus I can see is that it uses IDE drives, but again since you have 3 PCI slots on the other machines you can get a IDE card and install even two HD into the 7X00 machines (there's room for 2). Basically the 7500 and 7600 is the same machine but if you plan on buying one and getting a G3 card then get the 7500 since it has a slower processor, which really wouldn't matter since you are getting an upgrade.

PS: the 7X00 has the A/V ports and an S Video slot built in so there is no need to buy one.

[ 01-29-2002: Message edited by: Captain Obvious ]

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Jan 30, 2002, 02:31 AM
 
Since just about any old Mac would be very cheap, why not go for the best? Get one of the old monsters - either a 9600 or one of the honking huge towers from UMAX or PowerComputing. Six slots gets you plenty of room to upgrade to 21st century standards if you ever decide to do that...

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Jan 30, 2002, 09:15 AM
 
I have a Performa 6400 with an upgrade to G3 and wouldn't part with it...it can be maxed out at 130mhz of memory for very little..it has its own web site where one could find a list of units and parts for sale:
6400 zone
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Jan 30, 2002, 10:48 AM
 
I have a performa 6320 (not the all in one), with a hard disk of 1,2 GB and 32MB RAM. It's not that much, but it has been working splendidly for over 5 years now . I still use it a lot for word processing, sometimes I use it for internet, and sometimes I play some games on it.
It can even handle bigger games; Railroad Tycoon II, Age of Empires 1, and even Myth II run quite good on it, even with 32MB RAM.

Since the performa was my first mac, I don't have any experience with other old macs, so maybe I'm not the right person to suggest you; but what I know is that I've had more problems with my two iMacs then with that performa .

btw - I run Mac OS 8.1 on the performa - but I have a copy of 8.6, 9.2 and 10.1; should I upgrade to 8.6 or isn't it worth it? It seems me that my iMac with 8.6 crashes more often then the performa with 8.1

And upgrading a performa to 9.2 isn't very recommendable, I suppose? Did anyone try this with 32MB RAM?

heheh or I could put 10.1 on it?
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Jan 30, 2002, 04:24 PM
 
Originally posted by Guest:
<STRONG>.
Since the performa was my first mac, I don't have any experience with other old macs, so maybe I'm not the right person to suggest you; but what I know is that I've had more problems with my two iMacs then with that performa

btw - I run Mac OS 8.1 on the performa - but I have a copy of 8.6, 9.2 and 10.1; should I upgrade to 8.6 or isn't it worth it? It seems me that my iMac with 8.6 crashes more often then the performa with 8.1

And upgrading a performa to 9.2 isn't very recommendable, I suppose? Did anyone try this with 32MB RAM?
</STRONG>

Which two iMacs do you have? If one is a Bondi Rev A then its the computer that has the problems. Otherwise, I feel (can't really prove it) that most iMacs after the five flavor versions were pretty decent in performance. But as a rule of thumb i try to avoid first revisions of anything from computers to cars. They all have bugs somewhere.
But I would upgrade yourperforma to at least 8.6 and bump up the RAM as much as you can afford to. If you can afford to max it out then 9.1 would be worth looking at, but not 9.2. 9.2 is just optimized for running classic under OS X, i haven't touchced it on any of my systems that don't run X

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Jan 31, 2002, 10:54 AM
 
Originally posted by Captain Obvious:
<STRONG>
Which two iMacs do you have? If one is a Bondi Rev A then its the computer that has the problems. Otherwise, I feel (can't really prove it) that most iMacs after the five flavor versions were pretty decent in performance. But as a rule of thumb i try to avoid first revisions of anything from computers to cars. They all have bugs somewhere.
But I would upgrade yourperforma to at least 8.6 and bump up the RAM as much as you can afford to. If you can afford to max it out then 9.1 would be worth looking at, but not 9.2. 9.2 is just optimized for running classic under OS X, i haven't touchced it on any of my systems that don't run X</STRONG>
One imac is a revision D, I think (grape, 233Mhz), which constantly crashed, but that's solved now, by adding more RAM. However, it annoys me that the Performa, which also has 32MB RAM, crashed far less often. This computer runs OS 8.6.

The other iMac is a 500Mhz graphite DV SE (summer 2000)
This one has a flickering screen when big white surfaces are shown on the screen, especially with a blank document in Apple Works. The problem already existed in 9.2, but it went much worse when I upgraded to 10.2 .
Beside that, this computer also makes noise when shut down.

[ 01-31-2002: Message edited by: Guest ]
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Feb 1, 2002, 05:39 PM
 
You know, the 6400/6500 is a really good machine with a G3 upgrade. The 6500 is better because it's got a 50 MHz bus vs. the 6400's 40 MHz. If you could get your hands on a 6500 you could upgrade it to a decent machine for very little money. I don't have any experience upgrading to a G3, but I would recommend you get the biggest and fastest cache you can find. Memory access time will be really slow, and you want to help that as much as possible.
Fyre4ce

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Feb 2, 2002, 12:57 PM
 
As others have intelligently suggested, the 7600/8600/9600 machines are the best non-G3s ever produced. They are very reliable and quite expandable - these were the first easy-to-upgrade Power Macs. The 7600 is a desktop CPU, the 8600 a tower, and the 9600 a larger tower. My 8600 contains three PCI slots and 8 DIMM slots. After four years of constant use, it's still my main machine today.

The only large native deficiency of these computers is their lack of graphics acceleration. That can be overcome through the purchase of a graphics board, but, unfortunately, there are very few low end options available at this point in time. The Radeon PCI card is over priced. I ended up purchasing an 8MB card from defunct manufacturer IXMicro, from Other World Computing for around $50. I have yet to install it, however.

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Feb 3, 2002, 08:21 PM
 
I put a 7300 up for sale on MacGurus.

512MB RAM, G3/450 (CarrierMPe), Radeon, 24x SCSI CD, 2GB HD. Can include ATTO UL3S or 2940U2B, PCI USB (XLR8 Dual Port), Apple DVI LCD 15".

Almost everything in it is new. Needed it for testing for six months. OS X is not well supported - but otherwise works excellent.

Gregory

[ 02-03-2002: Message edited by: Gregory ]
     
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Feb 4, 2002, 10:29 AM
 
All the older Macs listed in the above posts are great machines, but suffer from a slow system bus. For that reason I'd look at the Blue & White PowerMacs as a starting point. They had the first 100 MHz system bus and are G4-upgradable. Also, the Yosemite (Blue & White) runs OS X like a champ. Multiple hard drives, firewire and USB standard, PCI slots (4), DVD-capable, and more.
     
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Feb 4, 2002, 02:08 PM
 
Originally posted by rambo47:
<STRONG>All the older Macs listed in the above posts are great machines, but suffer from a slow system bus. For that reason I'd look at the Blue & White PowerMacs as a starting point. They had the first 100 MHz system bus and are G4-upgradable. Also, the Yosemite (Blue & White) runs OS X like a champ. Multiple hard drives, firewire and USB standard, PCI slots (4), DVD-capable, and more.</STRONG>
No no no.... you are missing his point:

<STRONG>I am looking at buying another mac, just for writing maybe paying some old mac games...</STRONG>

The poster seems to have a limited use for a second machine and does not ask for a secondary machine for OS X or even a G3. So I don't think pointing him in the direction of a $350+ computer is the way to go if he can pick one up that will do everything he wants it to for under $100. OF COURSE the models you mention are great machine but if that kind of power is not needed then why spend the cash?

[ 02-04-2002: Message edited by: Captain Obvious ]

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Feb 4, 2002, 06:52 PM
 
Artemis... G3 all in one
     
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Feb 16, 2002, 01:46 AM
 
SE/30!!!!! or a Mac IIci
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Feb 16, 2002, 05:15 PM
 
For your uses, It seems like you are looking for some sort of all-in-one machine. The good suggestions are the Artemis (PPC all-in-one), the SE/30, the Color Classic, the Performa575or580. These are all decent machines that will give you almost all what you want. The Artemis and Performas have the ability to get on ethernet (the Performas don't have it built-in, but can be used with an add-in).

I have two SEs and a Quadra605 and Performa580. These are great old machines and are a ton of fun to play those old games. Hope you get something fun and ENJOY!

If you want software for these old computers, do a search online and there are plenty of resources for Mac 68k computers.
     
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Feb 16, 2002, 08:29 PM
 
You think the B&W G3 runs X smoothly? Where the hell have I been? I have one and OS X is usable, but not smoothly. I'll sell it for $1500if you want though!
     
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Feb 21, 2002, 04:54 PM
 
ordered a new iMac G4 a few days ago...not looking for an older mac anymore. thanks for all the responses though they were interesting
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Mar 13, 2002, 10:56 PM
 
Hi, I have 2 Macs. My old one is a Power Mac 6400/180(My dad has that now.). He plays game and does wordprocessing on it. I have an IMac G3 Indigo. I am writing about the old Power Mac.

Recently it has been crashing alot, it freezes up,etc. Also the screen changes it color at whim.

I advised him to take off as many applications that he doesnt use as possible. We deleted all the internet stuff. I also advised him to do a desktop cleanup often
It still freezes. It doesnt have alot of memory.

What else would you advise.

Originally posted by Fyre4ce:
<STRONG>You know, the 6400/6500 is a really good machine with a G3 upgrade. The 6500 is better because it's got a 50 MHz bus vs. the 6400's 40 MHz. If you could get your hands on a 6500 you could upgrade it to a decent machine for very little money. I don't have any experience upgrading to a G3, but I would recommend you get the biggest and fastest cache you can find. Memory access time will be really slow, and you want to help that as much as possible.</STRONG>
Beth Cornell
     
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Mar 14, 2002, 01:34 AM
 
Originally posted by Pinkwheels:
<STRONG>Hi, I have 2 Macs. My old one is a Power Mac 6400/180(My dad has that now.). He plays game and does wordprocessing on it. I have an IMac G3 Indigo. I am writing about the old Power Mac.

Recently it has been crashing alot, it freezes up,etc. Also the screen changes it color at whim.

I advised him to take off as many applications that he doesnt use as possible. We deleted all the internet stuff. I also advised him to do a desktop cleanup often
It still freezes. It doesnt have alot of memory.

What else would you advise.

</STRONG>
START a new thread, this has nothing to do with the original one. And more info please... What OS, RAM, HD specs.... people cant help you out unless you are clear about the situation.

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Mar 18, 2002, 12:25 AM
 
You know, I have a complete Performa system I'm trying to sell - you might be interested in it. It's a great machine, and I've upgraded it with some premium components. Take a look here and please email me if you're interested.
Fyre4ce

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Mar 23, 2002, 11:28 PM
 
My B&W G3 450 MHz ran OS X like a champ. Then I slammed in a Sonnet Encore G4 500 MHz processor upgrade and it positively took off! Geez, I just love this machine! I'm no computer pro and don't earn my living with it, so for me it's just dandy. I'm considering jumping up to a DP 533, but only at the right price. Otherwise I'm waiting for Apple to amaze me at MWNY this July.
     
   
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