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Accelerate Your Mac! - the source for performance news and reviews
The Source for Mac Performance News and Reviews
Review: Powerlogix's Series 133 Dual 1GHz G4 Upgrade
Tests vs Original Dual G4/533 and Dual 1GHz MDD G4
By Mike
Published: 12/24/2002
3D Game Performance Tests
Intro | Benchmarks  | Apps Tests  |  Game Tests | Installation | Specs/Design
Game Performance Tests

This page lists test results in popular 3D games like Quake3, Unreal Tournament X PR3 and Return to Castle Wolfenstein

Quake3 Tests:
Tests were done with the latest Quake3 version (1.32) as of this review date. I used the default "High Quality" Quake3 setting w/all game options on. (Only the resolution was changed.) The Quake3 config file had only one tweak - s_chunksize was set to 4096 vs the default (for v1.32) 2048. For the dual CPU tests, r_smp was set to "1" (to use both CPUs). The single CPU results were with r_smp=0. As with every game test I've ever run on a Mac here, audio (sound) was enabled, although music volume is set to 0. (Some readers have asked about this since the GF4 Ti video card review, so I just wanted to make it clear that sound is always enabled.)

Quake3 OS X

Note: The numbers in "()" in the PL Dual 1GHz bars are the FPS rates with the Radeon 9000 Pro card installed vs the 8500 AGP. (I didn't have time to run all tests with the 9000 Pro in the DA system, but at least wanted to show that comparison.) As you can see, the 9000 runs out of breath at the high end a bit more quickly than the 8500, but is close in Q3 performance otherwise. See the RCTW and UT X tests - where at the resolutions tested, the 9000 Pro often bettered the 8500 however.

Return to Castle Wolfenstein Tests:
I used the RTCW Multiplayer demo first used in my PL 1GHz Cube review back in August, sent by a reader (thanks Tzunami) back then. (You can download the demo using the button in the sidebar at
(Note with v1.41, you have to change the "59" in the demo filename to "60".)

I ran tests with the "High Quality" in-game settings, audio enabled, but music volume set to 0 (and using the internal speaker).

RTCW MP Demo Tests

I then decided to run the same HQ settings test at 1280x1024 resolution to compare the two Dual 1GHz machines.

RTCW MP Demo Tests

The 9000 Pro card performs a little better than the 8500 in RTCW at the resolutions tested. (I doubt most Mac owners play RTCW at more than 1280x1024.)

Unreal Tournament Tests:
I used the latest UT X PR3 version as of this review date. Medium Quality settings, 1024x768 mode, music volume set to 0, decals and dynamic lighting enabled, "Min Desired FPS" set to 0.
I used UTBench rather than Wicked400, since UTBench has more varied gameplay, but still has lots of action. Framerates seen in actual play will usually be significantly higher than what is shown with the UTbench benchmark however (in my experience). However since it's impossible to play to matches the exact same way, I used UTbench for a relative comparison. (UT scores on macs have always been low, regardless of system or graphics card in my experience, but the game is a lot more playable than the UTBench scores would have you think.)

UT Bench X

As a FYI - with the DP533/8500 AGP, the FPS shown at idle (before start of a level) was appx 77.x FPS typically, with the PL Dual 1GHz/9000 pro, it was around 220.

Other Sources of Game Performance Comparisons:

  • The Video card reviews page lists articles and reviews with comparisons of many previous Mac 3D video cards.

  • The Systems page includes reviews of various G4/G3 systems and PowerBooks. Usually those reviews include game performance tests also.

  • The searchable Mac Game Framerates database has thousands of entries of Mac 3D game framerate reports using games like Unreal, UT, Quake1, Quake2, Quake3, etc., as well as other benchmarks. Systems range from 603e models to Apple's latest AGP/G4s. You can limit searches by game title, video card, CPU speed, Mac model (or any combination). This database can be a great tool to see what effect CPU speed and video card have on game performance.

The next page comments on installation of Powerlogix CPU upgrade. Or you may use the links below to jump to a specific page.

Index of PL Dual 1GHz Upgrade Review Pages

Intro | Benchmarks  | Apps Tests  |  Game Tests | Installation | Specs/Design

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