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Accelerate Your Mac! News Archive for: 2/26/2001 Monday's NewsReturn to Accelerate Your Mac!

Click  for Thunderbolt upgrades!
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Top stories of the day:

LightWave 3D Tests - GeForce2MX vs Radeon:
While running Lightwave 3D 6.5 tests for an update to Saturday's GeForce2MX vs Radeon tests in my Dual G4/500, I saw an odd problem with previews in Lightwave using the GeForce2MX card that was not present when using the Radeon card. See the update to my GeForce2MX vs Radeon article for details and screenshots on the issue.
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Powerlogix Announces iMac G4 CPU Upgrades:
Powerlogix has officially announced their G4 iForce CPU upgrades for iMac 233Mhz-333MHz models. The iForce is available in G4/400/512K to G4/500/1MB models. It's good to see someone offering a G4 upgrade for the iMac, since Newer Tech's previous iMaxPowr G4 (reviewed here last summer last year) vanished when the company closed its doors.

Prices for the iForce G4 range from $379 (G4/400/512K) to $699 (G4/500/1MB). See Powerlogix's press release for more details on the iForce G4.

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B&W G3 Rev 1 Disk Corruption Test Utility:
Reader Tim Seufert sent his Disk Corruption test utility (click here to download it) mentioned in last week's news. See the readme file for more info on the utility. For those that missed his comments in last Wednesday's news, he noted that although he originally thought his rev 1 B&W G3 with an IBM 75GXP drive was immune to the data corruption issues that IDE chip has with replacement drives, using a tester he wrote discovered otherwise. Here's a repeat of his comments:

" Mike,
Could you update the drive database entry for my Rev1 B&W with a 75GXP to show that I have corruption? I recently wrote a better corruption tester tool and have found that there are very rare read errors (though I've never found a write error).

Small SMI tests will not discover this. It took writing a 2GB test file with multiple readback passes to uncover it (and sometimes it will pass even that test, so multiple test iterations are a good thing).

Also, I'd like to distribute the tester through your site so that xlr8yourmac readers can use it for better corruption testing. It doesn't have a GUI interface because I wrote it to easily compile under either Linux or MacOS, but it should be fairly straightforward to use. You just tell it how many test iterations to run, the size of the test file, and the number of verification passes to do after writing the file, and it goes and does its thing.

Unlike SMI checksum tests, it can detect literally any error (checksums can be fooled). It works by writing a file filled with a (repeatable) pseudorandom sequence. After the file is created, it reads it back and compares the file against the recreated sequence. If any discrepancy is found, it logs it and prints a warning.
Tim Seufert "

This issue has been noted here since about spring 1999 when it was first discovered. Tim's going to send his tester for posting here, so that rev 1 B&W G3 owners can download it for use on their machines. The safest bet for adding/replacing drives on a rev 1 is to use a PCI IDE card. (Although some readers have used the slower CDROM channel and ZIP bay, Apple doesn't recommend the ZIP bay be used for hard drives, due to possible heat issues I assume.)

If you have a B&W G3 and it has the dual drive stacked bracket and dual drive cable, then you have a rev 2 model with the revised IDE controller. There were some interim models shipped without the dual drive bracket however, but with the revised IDE chip according to past reports. To check the IDE chip, see the B&W G3 rev 2 page here which shows where the IDE chip is located and the marking on the revised chip.

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Reader Tip for Adding Plextor 8x20 CDR Support to iTunes:
As noted last week on the feedback page here, iTunes 1.1 supports the Plextor 8220 drive (8x2x20x) but not the 820 (8x20x CDR) model. A reader sent a note on how he added support for the 820 drive:

Hello Mike,
I have a SCSI Plextor 8/20 CDR drive on my G4 and was a bit disturbed to find that iTunes had support for the 8/2/20 CD/RW, but not my own. I took some time out to edit the data fork of the PlextorCDR file in the Authoring Support Files of the Extensions folder, and viola! I can burn!
Note that this probably drops support for the 8/2/20 CD/RW drive, but it should help some of your readers out there.
Dave Rosen"
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Reader Reports TurboMax ATA/33 IDE Firmware v1.8 Doesn't Fix 2001 G4 Compatibility:
Greg Gant reported that even after flashing the latest 1.8 firmware update into his Turbomax ATA/33 PCI IDE card, his G4/466 (2001 model) still would not boot with the card installed. As noted here previously, 2001 G4 owners have also reported problems with the VST (ATA/66) IDE cards (at least with current firmware versions) in those systems, although the Sonnet Tempo (aka Acard ATA/66) is reported to work.
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News from Mac RainBow Six Mod Site:
Mac R6 mods site sent word they've posted new skins files and will be doing conversions for the Mac of Cocobolo's Mods,, and Shadow Opz, (FYI: you need IE 5.0 and flash plugin to use the website. Netscape 4.x and iCab do not work.)
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CPU Upgrades Owner Ratings Database Updated:
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 10 new reports (total to date: 5,300). [Entries from after midnight EST will be added the following day.]

  • Formac Carrier card w/G3/233 ZIF in 7600 (rated 5)
  • Newer Tech G3/500 in 7500 (rated 7)
  • Newer Tech CC ZIF Socket Card in 7600/132 (rated 7)
  • Other World Computing G3/400 in Beige G3 (rated 9)
  • Powerlogix Zforce in 7500 (rated 10)
  • Sonnet G4/400 in 7500 (rated 10)
  • XLR8 CarrierZIF w/G3 400 ZIF in Umax S900 (rated 10)
  • XLR8 CarrierZIF (MAChCarrier) G3/500 in PowerCenter pro (rated 10)

  • B&W G3/300 OC report
  • Beige G3/233 OC report

You can find these full reports by searching the database selecting the indicated Mac model and upgrade card brand/type. If you've upgraded the CPU on your Mac, please post an entry in the database. Search the database for entries from most every upgradable Mac model *before* you buy. (Searchable by mac model/upgrade brand). For detailed reviews with performance tests and install tips, see the CPU Upgrades page.)

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CDRW/CD/DVD/HD Compatibility Database Updates:
The Drive Compatibility searchable database had 58 new entries added this morning including CDRWs, Combo DVD-CDRWs, and Hard Drives. (Current total 3,050 reports). Entries from after midnight are added the following day. [BTW - the drive database is not a place to post questions, it's for reports on drives you've used. For guides to drive installs, see the IDE, SCI or Firewire articles here and/or the FAQ. Thanks.]
You can find full owner reports by searching the database by drive/brand/interface/mac models (the latest reports are shown first in searches).
If you've added a IDE, SCSI, Firewire or USB hard drive, CDRW, tape drive, etc. make sure you add a report to the database.
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Video Card/System Benchmark Performance Database Updated:
Updates to the Mac Game/Video Card Performance database included:

  • Unreal Tournament (800x600) results from Beige G3/400 w/Radeon PCI card
  • Unreal Tournament demo (832x624) from Beige G3/266 w/Radeon PCI card
  • Quake3 1.27g (640x480,800x600,1024x768) results from Beige G3/400 w/Radeon PCI card
  • CineBench 2000 results from Beige G3/500 w/Radeon PCI card
  • CineBench 2000 results from Beige G3/233 w/Radeon PCI card
  • CineBench 2000 results from 54/64/6500 (603/200mhz) w/onboard video
  • Throughput 1.5 results from 54/64/6500 (603/200mhz) w/onboard video
  • Throughput 1.5 results from B&W G3/400 w/Radeon PCI card
  • Throughput 1.5 results from Beige G3/233 w/Radeon PCI card

Total entries in the database to date: 2,490. If you haven't already, enter your results with any of the game titles or benchmarks listed on the entry page (details on how to test are there). If you're curious how a CPU upgrade or new Video card would help game performance, the search page options can help you find similar system/configurations to get an idea before you buy.

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Software Updates and Apple TILs:
Reported By: Barney Buoy

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Recent Reviews and Articles:
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