Can You Upgrade The PowerPC Chip in a ...

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seth_381's picture
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I'm looking at G4 Powerbooks and I wanted to know if it was possible to swap the G4 Chip to a faster G5 chip is it possible ?

-Seth

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Joined: Oct 9 2004
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nope

for a simple answer, nope.

the main reason that a G5 was never put into notebooks was because of the heat.
also the G5 motherboards also have fixed cpu ratios. for example, my ghz has a 1ghz FSB and no matter what G5 i put in it, it will always run at 2ghz. (as i understand it.)

also, i believe the cpu's on powerbooks are soldered right to the logic board, not socketed likt the older G3 powerbooks were.

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Also, the G5 has ALOT more ha

Also, the G5 has ALOT more hardware than G4s did. FIrst the G5 is 64-Bit. Second, it would require ALOT of Firmware editing. Third, almost everything on your G4 PowerBooks Motherboard would be to slow for the G5 chip. Fourth, you'd probably get third degree burns if you were to use this concoction in your lap if you did some how get it to work. Your processor has to be the right model number to match what your G5s motherboard can take. Then you have to run Apple Service Diagnostic and Calibrate the CPU to the Motherboard. I learned all this trying to replace the motherboard in my G5. Then to find out both a processor and the motherboard was dead... lol... Easy fix though once I got ASD and all the parts. Though I shouldn't really say that since you have to take just about everything out of the G5 Case to get the MotherBoard out.

WOW I just went its a rant WAAAAYYY off topic. Lol sorry.

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Not even remotely possible, t

Not even remotely possible, they are completely different architectures, not just different generations. This is one of those "Square peg, round hole" situations. If Apple didn't want to spend the millions of dollars to bring it to market, trust me, it's not going to happen.

It's not like talking about putting a g4 in place of a g3 chip, it's like talking about swapping a g3 or g4 for an x86 chip.

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I recall there being a L33T h

I recall there being a L33T h4x0r who could fit a G5 chip into a clamshell that he was selling on eBay. 66mhz bus - no problem - the G5 will still run at full speed.

(just messing around)

For the record - the G5 is the biggest dead end Apple has ever brought about.

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Eudimorphodon's picture
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Flop

iantm wrote:

For the record - the G5 is the biggest dead end Apple has ever brought about.

Apple has had so many flops over its history that it's really rather difficult to single out the G5. ;^)

The G5 is actually a great CPU, or is based on a great architecture at least. Just ask Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft. Between them they've sold something like 30 million of them so far. IBM just told Apple to get bent when they told them to develop a laptop-capable version for free *OR ELSE* they'd switch to Intel.

I suppose it might be accurate to say "PowerPC on the desktop" was the biggest dead-end Apple ever brought about. They were barking up the wrong tree for twelve straight years on that one, clearly.

--Peace

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PowerPC - not entirely a dead-end

The PPC G3 kicked the Pentium's rear end at the time it was introduced, and the G5 held up very nicely against the Pentiums that were available at the time the G5 was first introduced.

The real dud, I think, was the G4, which was just a G3 with AltiVec (which helped only on FPU), and which was hobbled by a too-slow ramp-up in clock speed.

Matt

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I think you're on to somethin

I think you're on to something, but it's a weird situation. IBM could push the G3 to 900MHz or so while Motorola was stuck at 500MHz, but Apple wouldn't eat their hat on their marketing push for Altivec and dual processing. I really think Altivec helped the adoption of OS X by not taxing the processor so heavily for Aqua's myriad effects, but at almost twice the clock speed? I'm sure that Apple knew what they were doing when they didn't abandon the G4 when it was stuck for a year and a half while the rest of the chip industry sped on to 1+ GHz.

I agree that Apple did the wrong thing in sticking with PowerPC chips for 12 years-- not because I think that the PowerPC platform is not good, but because they should have gone straight to Intel when it became clear that the G5 was not going to scale to 3GHz or any kind of laptop package. It is quite convenient that Intel's Core microarchitecture came out right as Apple really started moving a lot of Intel Macs, though. That leads me to believe that they had been talking with Intel since the aforementioned lapse in the G5, and the wait was only a matter of the old processors not being what Apple wanted.

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tmtomh's picture
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Re: I think you're on to somethin

moosemanmoo wrote:

It is quite convenient that Intel's Core microarchitecture came out right as Apple really started moving a lot of Intel Macs, though. That leads me to believe that they had been talking with Intel since the aforementioned lapse in the G5, and the wait was only a matter of the old processors not being what Apple wanted.

I agree completely - the Pentium 4 line, prior to the Core line, was far inferior in terms of heat/power consumption, and performance per clock cycle.

Matt

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Core line based on PIII architecture

The P4 was just this bastardization that allowed Intel to ramp up nominal speeds to the Gigahertz range by dropping some problematic parts of the PIII core.

When they designed the Core, they went back to the last PIII designs and with new technologies made a more efficient core.

The P4, with all its special features, was Intel's dead end.

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The Core Duo processors (and

The Core Duo processors (and the Core Solo) are based on the Pentium 3 (Pentium M), but the Core 2 processors have a totally new architecture called Core.

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[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/

Wikipedia says that the Core 2 is design is from the ground up, but it is based on the design philosophy of the Core down through the Pentium M & the Pentium 3 on back to the PPro.

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