View Full Version : PowerMac PC-i-e-x confusion!

2005-11-23, 10:15
There's a plethora of refurbs on Apple's site. But how the heck is one suppose to wrap their heads around this whole PCI mess?
I don't have any cards so I'm starting fresh...
Where is the industry going?
What format are most graphics cards in?
I don't do audio, so that's not an issue.

According to Bare Feats, it's more desireable to get PowerMacs with PCI-X slots (vs PCI)
But how do the current dual-core PowerMacs compare against previous PCI-x models?

Some of you have asked which "older" G5 Power Mac models are most desirable. I recommend getting a model with 8 memory slots, 100/133MHz PCI-X slots, and 600W Power Supply. The table below gives the model number, etc., of these most desirable older G5s.

2005-11-23, 11:20
I think in the long run, PCIe will be used the most. PCI-X is really just a sped-up version of regular PCI. The big thing is it has backwards compatibility. And backwards compatibility rarely matters because 99.9% of PCIe motherboards have at least one PCI slot for older devices.

But Apple chose not to do this. Why? I have no clue. It's really, really stupid though. I mean, it was one thing when the iMac came out and only has USB ports, and no ADB, serial, or SCSI, because that was a cheap consumer machine. But this is a POWERMac. It's over $2000. I would expect more.

Okay, rant aside, I still think PCIe is the way things are moving... eventually. It's more of a next-generation standard than PCI-X, which is basically a refresh of the old existing standard. PCI-X PowerMacs have an AGP slot for graphics, and the only extra video cards you can add (if you need more than two monitors) are plain-jane PCI video cards, like the Radeon 7000 and Radeon 9200 PCI. With the new PowerMacs, there are four PCIe slots that vary in speed, but they should all be compatible with all the different graphics cards you can get. So if you buy a faster card later you can just move the old one to one of the extra slots.

Things are really just turning towards PCIe. A year ago, a majority of video cards were still being made for AGP, and only brand new models came in PCIe. But these days, PCIe cards are dominant. Apple was a little late in the game, but not too late. Right now your options are very limited simply because PCIe hasn't been around long on Macs, but give it six months to a year and you'll be glad you got PCIe.