View Full Version : graphics cards for photoshop users

11-13-2001, 04:41 PM
I have a P.M. 8500 G3/233 128m.b. with an old ATI Xclaim that I would like to upgrade for my wife who is a graphics professional (she uses a G4 at work and occasionally brings some work home).I have considered buying a Radeon but am concerned that while it may provide a considerable boost to 3D gaming it may do little to improve 2D performance that her existing card provides. If I can find a suitable video upgrade, I will of course add some ram, and possibly switch the cpu with something in the 400/450mhz. range. I know this Mac is limited in many ways, but I paid an obscene amount of $$ for it in '95 and I want to squeeze every bit of productivity from it before it gets shelved. Thanks in advance for any advice.

11-13-2001, 05:14 PM
www.xlr8yourmac.com (http://www.xlr8yourmac.com) interviewed ATI's Chris Bentley on 10/25/2000 and he had this to say about the 2D speed of the Radeon:

How does the 2D/Scrolling performance of the RADEON compare to the Rage128 Pro? (or other competitor's cards)

Chris: The RADEON was designed with the mid to high end users in mind. Since 8bpp performance is no longer as important as 16bpp and 32bpp, the overall 8bpp graphics performance numbers are slightly slower than Rage128 Pro. However the 16bpp and 32bpp numbers are on par with Rage128 Pro, which is our focus. When examining individual subtest performance the RADEON is clearly faster than the Rage128 Pro across the board.

The full interview can be read here:


[This message has been edited by TriPhaze (edited 13 November 2001).]

11-19-2001, 12:15 PM
The Radeon is fine for Photoshop/graphics work; I have used one in an upgraded 8600 and it did O.K. However, an 8500 is going to be pretty pokey compared to a new G4, by the time you add in the cost of a 450 MHz G3 or G4, memory and a Radeon PCI (which alone will be $150.0 unless you hunt down a deal and get lucky), you are looking at probably 500 to 600 dollars. Also, you will probably want a faster hard drive . . . I let my 8600 go not because it was a dog but the cost of trying to match today's hardware just didn't make sense.

You can find good deals on G4s with extra RAM at most places, I've even seen the 733 base models with 256 MB added for very little. You might want to ask your wife what she needs to do at home, since that obviously affects the decision. Most of my "hobby" work involves fairly big files, so I might not be a good judge of what you need.