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Thread: B&W G3, SCSI questions, etc.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Mountain View, CA USA


    I have some questions regarding a used B&W G3 I just picked up to use with our Leaf Volare digital camera back (which connects to the G3 via a PCI SCSI card of its own). I've tried finding some answers on Apple's web site, but it's so easy to get lost there.

    The newer B&W G3 is a 400Mhz, with the 9 Gig SCSI drive. When I first connected our Volare to it, I noticed many things were running much slower that the previous computer I'd been using, a B&W G3, 350Mhz, ATA 6 Gig drive, Mac OS 8.6. Zooming in or out in the Leaf software (v 6.1 on both systems) could take a second or two, opening an Leaf HDR file would take 18 seconds, exporting an HDR file and opening it in Photoshop would take about 25 seconds total. The times on the older computer were, respectively, almost immediately, 9 seconds, and 16 seconds. Other things took the exact same amount of time (Unsharp Masking, for example). FWIW, RAM allotments for Leaf software and PS are the same on both systems, although the newer system does have slightly more RAM (1 Gig vs. 768Mb). I'm not an in-depth techie, but started wondering about:

    1. the 9.1 OS than was installed on the newer computer

    2. the non-partioned 9 Gig drive

    3. improper SCSI termination on Apple's card (one cable goes from the card to the HD, then continues on to where it is terminated with a Ultra2 LVD/SE SCSI terminator - however, there's also a direct external connector off the card, as well as another ribbon cable coming off the board which leads to another (skinnier) external connector. This ribbon cable has an "Always Terminate" message printed on it)

    4. video card (an ATI Rage 128, but with Video In, S-Video In and TV out connections also)

    So, I wiped the drive clean, broke it into 3 partitions (2 Gig, 5 Gig and the remaining +/- 1.5 Gig), then installed OS 8.6. Everything that was slow before (exporting/saving/opening files, zooming in and out, Photoshop filters and other operations) is now nice and speedy, although I have gotten a couple of error mesages from Leaf software, requiring me to restart. I'm also still wondering about terminating the Apple SCSI card. Any suggestions or ideas? What made the system faster?

    Thanks in advance,
    Dan Clark

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Grangeville, ID USA


    HI ya Dan,

    ?Welcome to the forum. Sorry it took so long for some sort of answer to your post, looks like you mostly stumped the lot of us.

    ?Having never seen the camera back and scsi card that you're using I hesitate to try and say anything about it. The OEM scsi card though should be a different matter.

    ?I don't know what card you have but if it has no cable and devices hooked to a connector most host cards will auto terminate. If you get a chance look into Apple System Profiler and post back which card and which firmware it has.

    ?I am not that big a fan of partitioning just to have partitions. Partitions are great for separating users, making up scratch disks for Photoshop and other applications that can benefit from a fast and optimized scratch volume. Other than that I can't imagine an actual system performance gain to be had from just partitioning. In fact I am tending more and more to limit the number of partitions I have as much as possible. Of course, I am now running OSX which in most cases looses the ease of functionality of the file system with more partitions.

    ?I am also a B&W owner and I am running OS9.2.2 and OSX on it. If I wasn't in need of OSX I would absolutely go with 9.1 as the fastest most stable OS Apple ever made pre OSX. Most folks are in agreement that 9.1 far surpasses any of the 8.x versions in speed and certainly in functionality and compatibility with current software. I would think it more likely that you had a system corruption that caused the slowdown.

    ?If you run Disk Warrior on your drive once or twice a month you should be able to avoid or clear up those kinds of issues. DW repairs and optimizes the index on our drives maintaining your files at their best. Great utility and more than worth its price.

    ?I would bet that wiping the drive was the reason you are now faster. DW's purpose is to put a corrupted drive back into that condition without wiping it.

    ?This is a great place to dig into your computer's needs, again, sorry that it took me a couple of days to think your post through.


    [This message has been edited by ricks (edited 25 July 2002).]

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