We're a Gah-rahge Band...
July 26, 2005 11:16 AM   Subscribe

Can I run OS X and GarageBand on an old (ca. 2000) Mac cube?

I believe it has 256 MB RAM. Not sure about processor speed. Please also feel free to suggest hardware interfaces (2-in / 2-out should be fine) and alternative multitrack recording apps (please indicate OS 9 or OS X). Would like to go up to about 12 tracks. Note: I also have a Yamaha ProMix 01 digital mixer with S/PDIF out. Thanks ... you guys are the best! **sniff**
posted by ZenMasterThis to Technology (10 answers total)
1. Up the memory in your cube.

2. Edirol UA-5 (2-in, 2-out, USB, S/PDIF audio adapter)

3. Mackie Tracktion 2 (multitrack recorder)

4. Get an external FireWire 400 hard drive (storage)

OS X 10.3 is required for Tracktion, but the rest should work for OS 9.
posted by Rothko at 11:24 AM on July 26, 2005

Run? Yes. Be usable? Most likely not. My 1.2ghz G4 runs like a dead dog with more than 3 tracks or so in GB.
posted by zerolives at 11:29 AM on July 26, 2005

It meets the minimum hardware requirements (stock Cubes had G4s between 450-550 MHz), but performance would almost certainly be underwhelming.
posted by mcwetboy at 12:27 PM on July 26, 2005

OS X 10.3 runs well on my old (2001) G4 TiBook. GarageBand is pretty assy; vocal stuff works well, but the program stalls if I use more than one or two tracks of software instruments/percussion loops. This is probably due to a too-slow hard drive. When I asked my brother about this (a longtime Mac user and musician), he said that it would be a pain in the ass to get the computer to work with GarageBand and that I should bite the bullet and get a Mac Mini.
posted by the_bone at 12:28 PM on July 26, 2005

I have a G4 cube (450) with a gig of RAM and Panther installed. I've been running OS X since the first public beta, and it is snappy. I have garage band, and it does take a while to launch, but runs fine once it is up. I have only used it to do fairly simple stuff (just a few tracks) but it is quite usable. I don't see why installing and setting it up would be any trouble at all...
posted by Lazlo Hollyfeld at 12:41 PM on July 26, 2005

Oh, like others have said, buy more RAM. It is cheap. If I recall, the cube came with only 64Mb installed by default (hard to believe, I know.)
posted by Lazlo Hollyfeld at 12:44 PM on July 26, 2005

PowerBook 867 MHz G4 with 640 Meg RAM. OSX 10.3 flies. I don't use GarageBand, but I do use Reason, often with hefty audio files, with no trouble at all. My prediction is that if you up your RAM you'll have no trouble.

The G4 isn't rubbish, and you can still buy computers new with only 256 Meg RAM: that computer should have a few miles left in it.
posted by nthdegx at 1:15 PM on July 26, 2005

The band I'm in uses an old Graphite G4 450 we got off of eBay and about a gig of ram in our GarageBand box. We record rehersals with it and it works rather well. The more memory you can throw at it, the better.
posted by mkelley at 2:04 PM on July 26, 2005

if you do find processor speed to be limiting, there are companies that make CPU upgrades (click Buy Now, it's easiest) for the machine, all the way up to dual 1.7GHz G4s. but at that price you may wnat to investigate a different system. I'll echo what everyone else says - lots more RAM, that machine supports up to 1.5GB (3x512MB PC100 SDRAM). 256 is minimum for OS X 10.4 anyway.
posted by mrg at 2:37 PM on July 26, 2005

I was under the impression that you couldn't speedbump the Cube very much because of its complete lack of active cooling (no fan).

I find Garageband a bit sluggish as the only app running on a dual 1 GHz G4 box. I can't imagine trying to run it on a Cube.
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:16 AM on July 28, 2005

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