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tanuki65

Use PowerPC for a week?

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Wondering if I could challenge myself to use only PowerPC for a week?

 

Things I do:

  • Watch YouTube (I'm thinking MacTubes/YouView)
  • Browse the Web
  • Edit video and upload it to YouTube (1080p HD)

Could I? If so, what computers (PowerBook G4 might be good)

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With the latest PPC Flash player (modified to report the latest version number of its Intel counterpart) and TenFourFox, my 1.33 GHz 12" PBG4 running Leopard was quite competent, if not somewhat pokey.

 

I used Safari to play normal YouTube (because TTF won't), and it worked surprisingly well (with the quality settings at minimum, of course), and VLC to play everything else (which did well except for some really big HD720 stuff).

 

While I'd rather not use it for daily stuff, I probably could if I had no other choice, since it does pretty much 95% of what I'd want a computer to do.

 

The only big thing I'd miss is the inability to run Pro Tools or any other high-end, relatively current DAW software. I suppose I could find an old version of PT for PPC, though, but it's not worth the bother for me (for now).

 

c

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The stomping of the various YT frontends was a direct result of the API changeover, yes... a month ago, they all still worked. I hate Youtube a whole lot, not gonna lie.

 

But anyway, pertaining to the original subject matter, whilst not wanting to detract from the intent, this isnt as much of a challenge as it might seem. Any new-world G3/4/5 machine can be used fairly functionally still if it has the resources to run 10.4 or if you are willing to run OS9 or programs in Classic mode.

 

Due to the number of die-hard PPC advocates, there are a lot of open-source solutions around still being developed particularly for the G5 world where the abrupt Intel switch and subsequent rapid deprecation of support by Apple and third party vendors hit hardest. Indeed the G5 is still a quick machine 10 years later and I use a 2.0 Dual-Core  daily, with the only problem I face (aside from the small, and in my applications irrelevant, issue of security risks) is that I can't use Skype, and that really isnt a problem either as I stopped using it around 7 years ago anyway. As far as video-editing, Youtube playback, browsing etc goes, it's a walk in the park, and many other things are just as much a breeze with a multi-core or multi-CPU G5-based machine. So whilst this would be your best bet for pure functionality, as far as being a challenge goes, it really is a bit of a non-event.

 

Any faster G4-based machine set up right can still be fairly comfortably used as they will run 10.4 fairly well and therefore it is still fairly easy to find relatively current or still-maintained software in the open-source spaces, You can still do most things, although Youtube will likely be a bit of a dog on the slower end of the quick G4 machines... other than that though it still will be not overly challenging with fairly basic needs in mind, simply a little slower than you are used to. Slower G4-based machines or the quicker G3 machines are a bit more borderline, simply by virtue of 10.4 runs terribly on slower machines particularly those with modest graphics performance. That being said, I only recently retired my Yikes G4 to secondary duties as it still performed well until the web got so fat that I needed TFF or Clasilla to browse it, which required 10.4, which is quite a poor experience even with a  500Mhz Sonnet upgrade and RAM maxed to 1Gb. Add to that, TFF was unstable at the time, and Classic mode is messy in my eyes, as is dual-booting, I simply opted to replace it rather than get Classilla. That being said, if it werent for that personal hang upI would still probably have kept it in service. As for video-editing, well... that's what I used it and my B+W tower for and they did the job well and still would now within reason, given enough hard drive and RAM to do so.

 

If you wanted a particularly challenging challenge that is still , I would suggest either using a 600Mhz G3 iMac or icebook as they give you a reasonable (by G3 standards) level of performance, and are bootable from OS9 to OS X10.4 meaning you have a fair scope of versatility with which to taylor the machine to meet your desired outcome, whilst still running within some fairly restrictive and largely insurmountable  hardware limitations that will test your ability to set the machine up efficiently and also test your patience during the usage period.

 

That being said, as I said there are lots of options available to keep some very old machines viable so whilst not wanting to play down your intentions, it isnt so much the actual use of the machine that would be the challenge, but more setting it up to acheive the desired outcomes with reasonable efficieny and reliability. For what it is worth my 17 year old Powermac 9600 is still a fast and sturdy machine for daily use with some well-selected upgrades and software and has the ability to do most things I do with the G5 on a daily basis (not Youtube just yet)... even to edit video if I really please. Hell, I used a 7600 for exactly that task many years ago. :) Nowadays, the use of the machine is really not a challenging experience as under OS9 it is nearly as fast as the G5, and I actually use the 9600 regularly. However setting it up to be a functional secondary daily driven machine would have been the challenging part if I had to do it all from scratch (which luckily I didnt entirely have to), as even the simplest of upgrades that make this machine a weapon (like say finding 512Mb of RAM for a beige Powermac are hard to get.

 

That being said, if you were to use a PM6360 for say a month for your daily computing without chucking it out the window, I'm sure I would not be the only person here whom would be suitably impressed. :)

 

ANyway.... there is some dreary 7am sentiment to chew on anyway. :)

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Really, PPC wasn't dumped after 10.5 because it was incapable, but because Apple wanted to push forward, and as much as it hurts, Snow Leopard would not have turned out as well as it did if they'd kept it PPC compatible.

Edited by TheWhiteFalcon

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What about http://www.gainsaver.com/catalog/Detail.aspx?&CCode=1015^Apple&CCode=3398^Mac+Laptops&ACode=G4&CCode=3407^PowerBooks&cICode=43669 (US$100), then upgrade with http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/133SO512328L/ (US$16) and a Seagate 100GB 5400RPM ATA/IDE drive for US$25 on eBay. US$141. Sell the old iBook G3 (700MHz, Opaque 16 VRAM) that I have and make US$70, and the cost drops to US$71!

 

Then I'll challenge myself to do everything I do (including video editing!) on this 13-year-old machine!

 

Edit: And I can always sell it if I want to upgrade!

Edit #2: Oh, and I'll sell the 30GB hard drive it comes with. Another US$15-20, bringing the cost down to US$55-ish.

Edited by tanuki65

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I used my 1 GHz TiBook for awhile, but it got rather frustrating, because it kept kernel panicking if I did anything intensive (which brought up the temperatures, making me think it's a BGA solder issue).

 

When it worked, it was decent (and it played SD video rather well).

 

c

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My main machine is an upgraded Quicksilver G4, which I am using right now. With a 1.6ghz 7447A, a SATA card( with 10000rpm WD's), a Radeon 9000 and an usb card, it can handle youtube very well by using ClickToPlugin's HTML5 player in up to 480p, handle facebook and manage my ipod 4. It satisfies me  :b&w: .

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I use my 3 G4 iBooks (2), PowerBook (1) and my G4 Tower for everything everyday since I acquired them long ago. I do have a iMac Intel Mini but do not have a working PSU for it.

 

So if this was a contest, I won.

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For what it is worth you likely will not hate the experience as much as you might expect if you play your cards right with the initial setup... I actually go out of my way to use the 9600 for a lot of things, simply because I can, and there is period or even current software available that does most things I want it to fairly quickly and efficiently. With a later machine you have a lot more in the way of system resources to play with, and with most older G4 machines you have the option of using Mac OS 9 which can actually streamline things quite a bit.

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9.2.2 should fly along beautifully on the 1.0 Ti... not entirely sure about Leopard's performance however. I know as much as it will run, however it may be a little painful as I don't beleive the Ti runs a hugely powerful graphics controller. It would help to turn off some of the UI graphics effects to speed it up a little. Bear in mind that leopard does not support Classic mode, so you must actually boot into OS9 entirely to use it. :)

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Yes, advantage of a TiBook! Also, 100GB is overkill for OS 9, but just enough for Leopard. *And* I can run my library of old Mac software (1983/4-1999 I think, maybe later than '99) on a blazing fast G4 chip (emulating a 68LC040). It'd be funny to run MacWrite on a Quad 2.5GHz G5!

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