Apple Archive

Why You Want a G3

- 2001.06.01

These days most people who use a Mac have a Power Mac, and a good number of those people have a G3 or a G4 processor inside their Power Mac. This article is for those who don't.

It's hard to tell you all the benefits of having a G3. The speed gain is amazing. You will be able to do simple things, like checking your email and browsing the Web, many times faster. A G3 also will let you switch between programs, access menu commands, and even turn your computer on or off with greater speed. Yes, menus do pull down faster on a G3.

A G3 is great to have when surfing the Internet. For example, it takes me 13 seconds to load the Low End Mac home page on a Power Macintosh 7200/75 with a cable connection. It only takes 5 seconds on a 216 MHz G3 with the same cable connection.

You will find that with a G3, you might have some spare time to do whatever you want after you are done checking your email or your favourite website.

And a G3 doesn't have to be expensive. Check out Is it worth putting a G3 in an older Mac? for information about upgrading to a G3. You can often buy an upgrade card for less than $200 on the used market and a complete G3 for $450-$500.

Many people wouldn't be able to function without their G3. Many programs, such as Photoshop, work up to twice as fast on a G3 than they do on older 603e or 604 Macs. If you ever plan to play movie clips, you really need a fast processor - and a G3 does this very well.

If you need speed on the road, the G3 is right there. A G3 upgrade card can be installed into all 1400 PowerBooks, PowerBook 1400and used 3500's and WallStreets can be had for as little as $500. While the G3 processor installed into a PowerBook is not as fast as the ones found in desktop Macs, they are still extremely speedy.

Ever since the G3's introduction in 1997 as a business computer, it has gained in popularity inside consumer Macs, such as the iMac, and professional Macs, such as the Power Macintosh G3 blue and white tower. While the G4 has replaced the G3 in professional systems, the G3 is still under development - it has gone from 233 MHz in 1997 to 600 MHz in 2001 and will almost certainly continue for the next year or two.

Whether you buy a new iMac, iBook, a used PowerBook 3500/G3, or an original Power Mac G3/233, having a G3 processor will make your Mac computing experience better than it ever has been before.

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