What You Need to Know About the Apple PowerMac PowerPC G4

Whether you want to create a flyer, edit a video, or just surf the internet, an Apple Mac PowerPC personal computer can make it possible. The Apple Mac PowerPC provides ample power for users working with graphic design, multimedia creation, or simply surfing the web.

What is a PowerPC?

The PowerPC or PPC is a specific microprocessor architecture present in the Apple PowerPC. It is designed to run specific applications native to an Apple PowerMac running Mac OS X. Many other models of Macs cannot run PPC software, but PowerPC Macs are able to do so. The PowerPC processor can run up to 733 MHz.

What are some features of the PowerPC G4?

This Mac model was touted by Apple as a personal supercomputer when it debuted in 1999. It was powered by a 400 MHz PPC processor and required at least 64 MB of PC100 SD RAM. In 2002, Apple introduced two new 933 MHz and 800 MHz PowerPC G4 processor models. Many of these PowerPC CPUs can run up to the 10.5.8 Leopard MacOS, with the proper hardware, and the built-in RAM can be expanded to 1 GB for faster operation. The G4 also sports a graphics card containing up to 16 MB of SDRAM. Typical units also include an optical drive, a hard drive, as well as Ethernet, FireWire, and USB ports.

Can you upgrade the PowerPC?

You can upgrade some components of the G4. Accessories such as the Apple keyboard and mouse can be easily replaced and connected via their respective physical ports. Otherwise, you will need to open the tower case if you want to replace the following:

  • Hard Drive: This Mac uses Ultra ATA/100 drives and can run on 128 GB or larger.
  • CPU: The processor is mounted on a removable card for relatively easy replacement.
  • RAM: Upgradeable to 2 GB of RAM.
  • Optical Drive: The existing DVD-RAM drive can be replaced with a DVD-ROM or DVD-R/RW drive.

What can you do with a this Mac?

The Apple Mac OS and the PowerPC Mac are designed for multimedia creation, but there are many PowerPC applications available. You can create audio CDs or burn video DVDs with an optional CD-RW drive. It can also play video, powered by its included NVIDIA GeForce2 graphics card. Its FireWire port allows for connecting digital video camcorders and the direct input of raw video for later editing and post-production.