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Processors

Every Mac model since the Power Mac 6100 back in 1994 is a Power Mac. For this edition of Sad Macs, I am assuming that you have a Power Mac. This section focuses on Power Mac hardware issues, but also delves into the ways in which the processor hardware and software interact.

What Makes a Power Mac Different from Other Macs?

Power Macs vs. 680x0 Macs The defining characteristic of a Power Mac is that it has a PowerPC processor (originally developed by Motorola and IBM). The first PowerPC processors had names like PPC 601 and PPC 604. The newest ones are called G3 and G4 processors. In general, each new generation of the processor is significantly faster than its predecessor. Further, within each basic processor type, there are variations that run at different speeds, as measured in megahertz. Thus, you may have a 350MHz G3 or a 500MHz G4. All Macs with a G3 processor are referred to as G3 Macs. Thus, even the iMac is a G3 Mac.


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