Power Mac G3 (Blue and White) and G4 ZIF

16 replies [Last post]
misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52

I've been hearing that you can install the G4 ZIF into a Power Mac G3 B/W. I've searched it but nothing came up in information. Is it possible without cooking the ZIF or the motherboard, and what are possible consequences in doing such.

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
eeun's picture
Offline
Joined: Dec 19 2003
Posts: 1891
Yes, you can

The early G4 desktops used a ZIF with the same pinout as the G3 ZIF. The only caveat is the G3 requires a firmware update, available here

__________________

"Give a man a fire, he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life."
(Terry Pratchett)

misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52
Early G4s?

So, the early G4 chips had the same. Is there a certain year to look for? I do know my system is Rev. B, if that may help.

I've eBay'd the CPU, and seen this one, wondering if it'd work:
http://cgi.ebay.ca/PowerMac-G4-Quicksilver-733Mhz-CPU-/230431966406?cmd=ViewItem&pt=CPUs&hash=item35a6d0c4c6

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac

Eudimorphodon's picture
Offline
Joined: Dec 21 2003
Posts: 1204
Re: Early G4s?

misterk85 wrote:

So, the early G4 chips had the same. Is there a certain year to look for? I do know my system is Rev. B, if that may help.

I've eBay'd the CPU, and seen this one, wondering if it'd work:
http://cgi.ebay.ca/PowerMac-G4-Quicksilver-733Mhz-CPU-/230431966406?cmd=ViewItem&pt=CPUs&hash=item35a6d0c4c6

No.

The only G4 CPUs that are swappable into G3s are the "ZIF" packaged (So named for the "Zero Insertion Force" socket, very similar to the one used in late 486 and Pentium computers) ones used *only* in the very first PCI-only G4 Towers. (Aka, "Yikes".) All later G4 towers used a completely different daughterboard system.

Here is an ebay auction for one, Found by searching for "G4 ZIF".

These CPUs (as "pulls") come in speeds from 350 to 450 Mhz. Third-parties made 500Mhz (and faster) upgrades with the ceiling somewhere around 1Ghz, but you'll pay a positively silly price for that. I have a B&W G3 upgraded with a 400Mhz G4 ZIF and honestly unless you get it for close to free it's probably not worth your while.

misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52
"Yikes" G4

Will this give me a bit of better performance with me using 10.4.11? I got 10.4.11 on my G3 350MHz (running with 640MB RAM), it's a tad slow at start up but once it's started, it runs relatively fine.

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac

Eudimorphodon's picture
Offline
Joined: Dec 21 2003
Posts: 1204
Well...

I went from a 400Mhz G3 to a 400Mhz G4 (and went as high as Tiger on it), so I can pretty fairly comment on the difference that having the G4 makes.

The short answer is that "yes, it will perform better", but what's improved is mostly unimportant things. With the G4 OS X's "desktop effects" are quite a lot smoother, IE, the scale/genie effects when minimizing programs are quicker, the screen savers that scale and pan photos actually run smoothly, iTunes visualizations can run at a higher frame rate, etc. But in terms of raw performance it just doesn't make any difference. Most mundane programs like web browsers and word processors don't use Altivec, and if it doesn't use Altivec the improvement is going to be *zero*, Mhz-for-Mhz.

Having the G4 will let you run a few programs that are G4 only, like GarageBand and the latest version of Flash Player, but because of its other limitations most programs that need a G4 will be too slow anyway. (The B&W's RAM subsystem, disk controller, and of course video subsystem is *substantially* slower than even the oldest AGP G4s')

The price of complete G4 towers has been completely tanking lately. With Quicksilver towers easily had for well under $100 you'd be better off getting a whole new system and migrating to it than upgrading a B&W if you have to pay to do it.

Offline
Joined: Jan 20 2005
Posts: 700
as an owner of a "Yikes!" i m

as an owner of a "Yikes!" i must say its pathetic for anything newer than os9 IF you dont wanna pull your hair out while trying to work.

__________________

-Justin
(dead) PB100, Q650, PB Wallstreet, beige G3, Imac snow 600, Ibook g4, SE30, (dead) IIsi, TiBook 667VGA, PBg4 1.5, MDD dual 1.25ghz, 1.8ghz g5 tower.
OS7.5 to 10.3.9. I LOVE CLASSIC MACS!

misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52
Hmm...

Will have to look into getting one. I'd love to get a nice Mac.

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac

Hawaii Cruiser's picture
Offline
Joined: Jan 20 2005
Posts: 1434
B&W

I've got a B&W running Tiger with an XLR8 500mhz G4 ZIF installed. It actually runs fairly nice if your expectations aren't high. Makes a very good OS 9 machine and its still has an ADB port. I've got OS 9 on a Ultra160 10k SCSI hard drive attached to an Adaptec 29160 SCSI PCI card so the SCSI drive flies. The B&W is SCSI friendly. I've put Tiger and Panther on SCSI drives and they worked, but I did that by cloning. The onboard ATA bus is only 33mhz, so it's pretty slow. You'd at least want to get a 7200rpm drive on the ATA bus.

Besides the firmware update, if you trade out a ZIF for a faster speed ZIF you also have to make sure the jumpers on the motherboard are rearranged to match the speed of the new faster ZIF. Nice thing about the XLR8 brand ZIF is the jumpers are on the ZIF card so you don't have to worry about the motherboard jumpers. But one very big word of warning, the B&W can be a very fickle machine. The B&W can leave you black and blue.

The better question is what do you want a Mac for? What do you want to do with it and what's the max price you are ready to pay?

madmax_2069's picture
Offline
Joined: Sep 24 2005
Posts: 664
I own a Yikes G4 at 400mhz wi

I own a Yikes G4 at 400mhz with 768mb ram and a Digital audio G4 at 533mhz and 768mb ram. The Yikes G4 is good if you want to run legacy software that uses Altvec or older games, web surfing is worse then getting your leg sawed off.

The Digital Audio G4 will run circles around the Yikes even though its only 133mhz faster because of its faster system bus, faster memory speed, AGP 4x for GFX cards, faster IDE controller. but still quite painful to use to surf the net with but its allot better then the Yikes G4. It is allot better to play any games with as well due to the faster CPU, and faster sub systems.

I would just buy a faster G4 system (like a Digital Audio and above) then to spend money on a Yikes G4 only to get marginal Performance gains. the amount you will spend upgrading that Yikes G4 you could buy a newer faster G4 system with and would get more of a performance gain (just the stock system) then by upgrading the Yikes would.

If you want to run OS9 software just look for a Digital Audio or Quicksilver or early 2003 MDD G4 (if you can find one, even faster due to a faster system bus and DDR ram), if you don't or will not run OS9 software get a FW800 MDD G4, G5, intel Mac.

Really the Yikes G4 is only good for running classic software (but there is better and faster systems for that) and for collecting.

__________________

Beige G3 AIO,Yikes, Digital Audio, Performa 475, Newton MP 2100, Apple IIgs, HP D530 SFF, Wyse winterm 3360SE
http://www.Apple2online.com

Offline
Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 52
A bit of a YMMV take on this.

A bit of a YMMV take on this...

A while back, I attempted to upgrade a B&W with a Rev. 1 motherboard using a G4/350 and the XLR* firmware block remover. After removing the block, the system continued to work until I installed the G4; after which it refused to POST, even when I reinstalled the G3.

I subsequently replaced the Rev. 1 with a Rev. 2 and repeated the upgrade using the same G4 ZIF and the NewerTech firmware block remover. This time, everything worked fine and has continued to work since then.

My personal feeling is that I'd be careful about upgrading a Rev. 1, especially with the Zif from a Yikes! (as opposed to one from Sonnet, PowerLogix, etc.). There was a somewhat anecdotal comment on MacInTouch, back in the day, which stated that Apple added the firmware block after power supplies failed in test systems. This comment was generally discredited, but after my own experience, I feel there may be some credibility in that the G4 may be enough to blow some marginal component in the Rev. 1 board.

Like I said, YMMV....

misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52
Currently What It's Running...

Currently I'm running 10.4.11 on it, a bit slow at times when loading Firefox, but other than that it's running smooth on the 350MHz G3 and 512MB of RAM. I'm thinking a possible RAM upgrade would possibly assist in making it a tiny bit faster. I got a DVD burner and 20GB HDD in it. I think the most I really want to do with it now is use it for a print server and possible web-server in the near future.

@jruschme: The system is running a Rev. 2 board. I can't remember if I mentioned that once before or not.

@Hawaii Cruiser: My expectations aren't very high at all, considering I still use an old Performa 6200CD and Classic II. Smile

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac

Hawaii Cruiser's picture
Offline
Joined: Jan 20 2005
Posts: 1434
RAMming speed

Wow! I have respect for anyone still using a Classic II. I had two, both with the leaking capacitor problem--they'd boot after about 15 minutes of a black and white banded screen. I pulled them out of the closet a couple months ago and turned one on and the power supply popped and fizzled, so I tossed that one but kept the shell for a possible MacAquarium. The other one did the same 15 minute until boot thing. Then a few days later I picked up an SE/30 that someone was throwing away. Had a bad hard drive which I replaced and it works great--no 15 minute wait!

As for someone still using a 6200CD...well, I can't say I have respect, just amazement. I had one of those, too, many years ago and it led me to join a chorus of people who rate it as the worst Mac ever produced. IIRC, it worked ok for the basics of system 7, and then I trashed it after trying and failing a few times to upgrade to OS 8.

Back to the B&W, the Yikes! loves matching (identical) RAM, and low-density SDRAM should be very cheap. Don't get high density. You can only use 256mb sticks, not 512mb in the Yikes! Also, for OS X the preference is RAM with a speed of 8ns or faster (smaller number is faster). RAM rated CL2 (2-2-2) is supposedly the best, although I believe that statement is actually a simplification and RAM ratings as an indicator of speed and quality have a lot of variables, but you might as well go with CL2. The Yikes! will run on PC100 and PC133 (PC133 is usually CL3). There's not actually any benefit of using PC133 over PC100. It also runs on PC66, some say, but that would be undermining your performance significantly. You can see your SDRAM ratings by using DIMM First Aid in OS 9. The B&W is very fickle about RAM, though, and I found that buying a matching set that specifically matches Apple's recommendations can save you big hassle. You can begin a laborious chore of screwing up your machine by putting in RAM that's been randomly pulled from other machines. When using random RAM I found that 128mb sticks tend to be more stable than 256mb. I've had many B&W's over the years. If after installing RAM or other cards, you find the computer suddenly stops booting, I found that just letting it sit turned off overnight corrects the problem. I experienced the suddenly non-booting B&W too too many times. The memory brings shudders to my soul.

misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52
More Power!

I just decided to get some extra RAM on eBay (if I win the two bids it'll cost me $10 Canadian for 1GB w/ shipping included). However, tonight I found an old fan and mounted it on the heatsink and noticed it seems to be running a bit more smoother. Would there be better heatsink w/ fan that can be used on it (something that could possibly keep it cooler and maybe run smoother/faster)?

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac

Hawaii Cruiser's picture
Offline
Joined: Jan 20 2005
Posts: 1434
As you may have noticed, the

As you may have noticed, the problem with replacing the ZIF heatsink in the B&W is that when the case is closed, if the new heatsink is any taller than the original, it hits the ZIP drive cage and the case can't close. That's why the original has the shape it does. The heatsink in the Beige G3 is the same heatsink, only shorter because it doesn't have the taller extension of the one half of the B&W heatsink. I've used a Beige G3 heatsink with a small fan attached to the heatsink to one side so it didn't hit the ZIP drive cage. I've also taken ZIF heatsinks off of discarded PC motherboards that had fans which fit and worked in the B&W. Extra cooling always helps. Also check to see if your large main case fan by the hard drives is working ok. The B&W's are getting pretty old and I've had a couple with bad fans. One of them would work only intermittently. The one problem with replacing the main fan is that the power connector for that fan is not the standard fan connector. It's smaller. I had to do some modding of the connector both when I replaced the fan, and also when I replaced the PSU with a PC PSU. I've also replaced a B&W fan still in its metal bracket with a G4 PCI Graphics fan in its bracket and to my surprise, contrary to appearance, the brackets are not identical and sit differently in the case.

eeun's picture
Offline
Joined: Dec 19 2003
Posts: 1891
Re: As you may have noticed, the

Hawaii Cruiser wrote:

Also check to see if your large main case fan by the hard drives is working ok. The B&W's are getting pretty old and I've had a couple with bad fans.

That would be my concern. The G3/G4 in ZIF incarnations weren't heat generating monsters, so if an additional fan makes the system run better I'd look at finding the cause rather than treating the symptom. The 120mm case fan should cool the CPU effectively, and I'd also check the PSU fan, and check for dust bunnies (if you haven't done all these things already). I'd also check that the CPU heat sink is mounted properly, and that its thermal pad isn't damaged, shifted, missing or otherwise preventing good contact.

__________________

"Give a man a fire, he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life."
(Terry Pratchett)

misterk85's picture
Offline
Joined: Apr 29 2010
Posts: 52
Curse of the Dust Rabbits

Well, as you can see from the subject, I did give it a good dusting, and it seems to be a LOT cleaner than before. That may have been the issue. I did put a nicer heat sink and fan on just to make it prettier (it's a short heat sink about 1/2 inch tall with a nice fan on top, and makes good clearing). I got some extra RAM ordered ($20 for 1GB PC133 CL2), which will give it a nice boost, thinking of finding a video card (only got a 16MB in it now, maybe 32MB would be better).

I'm still thinking on G4-ing it later on in the future, be a great first-timer for my first-born. Tongue I'll have them rhyming off binary in their sleep. Smile

__________________

-- Kyle N. J. McIsaac