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Hey all,

 

I'm confused. Can you generally use a non-Cube Sonnet upgrade in a Cube?

 

I know the dual CPU models require some heat sink modifications.. but do the single? I've seen a few 1.0, 1.2 and I think a 1.6 pop up on eBay.. so I was curious if these could be used in a Cube (with a fan installed). 

 

I've read on some older posts that the VRM needs to be replaced if you're going to use anything higher than 1ghz, is that true? I think those are still obtainable.. but they're expensive.. so if I can avoid that, I'd rather.

 

In the same vein, does anyone have a 800mhz+ CPU upgrade they want to part with? I'm thinking about buying a 500mhz Cube CPU from another member here.. but I guess that's really only ~10% faster than the stock 450..

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You can use any upgrade in the Cube that fits in there you will however put extra load onto the VRM when using upgrades which were not made for the Cube.

Running the stock VRM with those upgrades will eventually fry it. A dying VRM takes the CPU and logicboard with it - I would not risk that.

That's the reason for running my Cube with the stock 500MHz CPU. It can stay 100% fan and noiseless that way too. I have a few spare Sonnet upgrades in the drawer but could resist the temptation to put one of them in the Cube.

Edited by Bolle
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I'm about to put a 1.25GHz upgrade in my Cube...when I finally have enough free time to take it all the way apart again, but I'll also be doing a whole load of other upgrades as well (upspec VRM, cooling fan, DVD burner, and upgraded video card).  I wanted to find a dual G4 upgrade but there are only a few that actually fit the Cube and I haven't seen any come up for sale in a while.  The majority of the Sonnet upgrades will fit with little modification, it's just going to seriously stress the VRM as Bolle mentioned.  The ones that typically don't fit without quite a bit of modification are the NewerTech, FastMac, Giga Designs, and PowerLogix upgrades from what I've seen.

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A dual 500 will likely do worse for the generation of apps you'd be likely to be running. While OS X does scale very well, anything that would take advantage of dual 500s is likely going to be in the class of apps such as photoshop and final cut. For regular use a 1ghz is going to be around 25-30% faster, at least in my experience.

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Not certain. Do you have any quicksilver machines? I have one laying around I could take a look at it later in the week, but I'm not sure. The bus speed shouldn't be an issue it should just drop down. When I get a chance I'll take a look at it and let you know.

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Have to be careful of bus speed on the cube.  Also Low power cpu upgrades as to not tax the VRM.  I have a 1.8 single upgrade in mine and runs 9 and X fairly well.  I put a fan in as there is a spot to actually mount one, and with a slim line G5 imac DVD bootable drive in there it takes lesss power and less room for more unblocked cooling.

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19 hours ago, Jinnai said:

I actually do haha, I should look at it and figure out what it is. I know it's just the card, lacking some sort of bracket or heatsink, so it might not be useful.

Just the card is exactly what I'm looking for provided it's not a dual CPU.. send me a picture if you want? Happy to make an offer.

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11 hours ago, Mikeyy00 said:

I found a japanese site selling the higher test VRMs.. so not worried there.

If you're talking about the Stratos VRM upgrade that's the one to go for...namely because if I'm not mistaken it's the only game left in town.

http://artmix.com/PowerMac_G4_VRM.html

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13 hours ago, Byrd said:

Don't bother with the Gigadesign C-VRM if you ever find one; they were actually not that great on aftermarket CPUs.  Mine couldn't even run a Gigadesign G4 1.4Ghz upgrade at the time.

I might have a line on a 1ghz Sonnet.. I'm thinking about trying it on the stock VRM, since the aftermarket one is like $200.

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The Sonnet G4 designed for Cube will not need an upgraded VRM; in the day Sonnet upgrades weren't bleeding edge and I didn't think much of them, but now they're my choice for upgrade as they are reliable and stable.

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17 hours ago, Byrd said:

The Sonnet G4 designed for Cube will not need an upgraded VRM; in the day Sonnet upgrades weren't bleeding edge and I didn't think much of them, but now they're my choice for upgrade as they are reliable and stable.

Looks like it's an Encore ST G4. 1Ghz. 

 

Manual says you need to install a fan if using a Cube. No worries there.


But it also says if you have the 800mhz and 1200mhz, nothing else is needed. But if you're using the 1Ghz, it's saying you need a newer VRM?

 

Can anyone comment on this? You'd think a 1.2ghz would use more power vs. the 1Ghz.

 

As-is, my cube has the hard drive replaced with an SSD, a small fan installed (connected to the hard drive power cable), and I've swapped the DVD drive out for a newer model. Oh, and a Radeon 7500 vs the Rage 128..  You think I can squeak by on my VRM with the 1Ghz?

 

I'll buy a newer one if I have to, but they're damn near $200.

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Personally, I wouldn't risk it.  With the upgraded video card and a CPU upgrade you're going to be putting more stress on an 18 year old board that didn't have a whole lot of extra headroom to begin with.  As Bolle mentioned, if the VRM goes it takes the motherboard and CPU with it.  Any replacement Apple stock VRMs you might find on eBay are going to be questionable too so I'd just bite the bullet and go for the Stratos one,

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As said I have seen Sonnet CPUs burning up Cubes as well.

If you want to be absolutely sure go for the upgrade VRM. Factor in the costs for a new logicboard, CPU and stock VRM replacement in case things go wrong and those 200$ don’t sound too bad anymore.

 

The failure usually isn’t instant but if you really use the Cube the stock VRM eventually breaks down under the additional load and heat.

The VRM can be fixed and most of the time you can fix the CPU board as well but I could not yet fix a broken logicboard.

Always wanted to try and transplant parts over from a working G4 tower board.

I‘ll do that some day to my dead Cube board.

 

 

The 1GHz upgrade was using an overclocked 800MHz chip. It was the same thing as the 800MHz upgrade but with a higher voltage set for the CPU.

The 1.2Ghz and 1.4GHz upgrades are using a more modern chip that generally runs cooler than the older 800/1000MHz upgrades.

Edited by Bolle
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It's unfortunate, but I'd hate for you to risk damage to your cube... the box says on it "Requires Cube Installation Kit: Kit P/N SGC-KIT for 800MHz and 1.2 GHz G4 only, Kit P/N SGC-VRM supports any speed." I'm not sure exactly what that means but perhaps it originally intended to go with a VRM upgrade.

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14 minutes ago, Jinnai said:

I'm not sure exactly what that means but perhaps it originally intended to go with a VRM upgrade.

It did.

For 800MHz and 1.2GHz you need SGC-KIT which includes a fan and mounting hardware for the CPU card.

The 1GHz needs SGC-VRM which included everything that came with SGC-KIT plus a new VRM. As said this is due to the 1GHz beeing an overclocked 800MHz 7450 which is getting really hot because it is running a higher core voltage to take it to 1GHz.

 

You need the fan for any upgrade faster than 800MHz.

 

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