processor upgrades Graphics Cards

Motorola StarMax 3000/240 Processor Upgrade Page

StarMax 3000/240MT Facts at a Glance

  • Processor: 603e, 240 MHz
  • Drive: 2.5GB EIDE
  • CD-ROM Drive: 8X ATAPI
  • Slots: 5 PCI
  • Installed RAM: 32MB
  • Max RAM: 160MB
  • RAM Slots: 3, 168-pin DIMM
  • Min RAM Speed: 60 ns
  • L2 Cache: 512K
  • Installed VRAM: 4MB
  • Introduced:12/96
  • Discontinued: -
  • Initial Retail Price: $2,799
  • Current Price


Additional Notes

  • Requires 3.3v EDO RAM
  • Requires adapter to use Mac monitors
  • PS/2 input port allows the use of PC devices
  • Came with 28.8 modem
  • Came with 5 year warranty

When Motorola joined the Macintosh Clone bandwagon in 1996 there was much cheering from the Mac press. Finally a big hitter, with business savvy and a good reputation in the business community had decided to manufacture their favorite computer and perhaps even expand the Mac market. As fate would have it, only a few short months later Apple would completely pull the plug on Mac cloning, putting an end to Motorola's offerings just as they were beginning to take off.

Motorola's StarMax Macs would win no awards for industrial design. They were solid, basic, competitively priced computers that relied heavily on standard parts to keep costs down. The StarMax 3000 series came in desktop or minitower form factors and in 4 different speeds; 160, 180, 200 and 240Mhz models. What distinguished the desktop models from the tower ones (other than the form factor) was that the desktops came with 16MB of RAM, a 1.2GB EIDE hard drive, 3 PCI slots, and the case had one free drive bay. The tower models on the other hand had; 32MB of RAM, a 2.5GB EIDE hard drive, 5 PCI slots and the case had 4 free drive bays. Other than this the features of the desktop machines and the tower machines are the same, except in the case of the 240Mhz model, which only came in a tower model and has a few unique features.

On all machine the 603e processor is soldered to the motherboard making its removal impossible. Luckily there are several CPU upgrade manufacturers that make upgrades for these computers that fit into the L2 cache slot.

A L2 cache of 256K shipped with all models except the 240Mhz machine, which has a 512K L2 cache. There are 3 DIMM memory slots and these machines use 3.3v EDO RAM with a maximum capacity of 160MB. Interestingly you are not able to install 8MB DIMMs in the StarMax, 16MB being the smallest accepted size. One MB of VRAM was standard and is upgradable to 4MB, except again on the 240Mhz model, which came with 4MB already installed. All machines have 8X ATAPI CD-ROM drive and came with a 28.8 external modem. There is no onboard Ethernet or internal SCSI. To add these features you will have to add appropriate PCI cards. Also the machines have a PC style SVGA monitor port. To use a Mac monitor will require an adapter. On the back of the StarMaxs are two PS/2 ports which allow you to use PC input devices, such as keyboard, mice, etc.

Aimed at the home user the StarMax 3000s shipped with a unprecedented 5 year warranty.

Internal Links

External Links

Below you will find the MacBench 4.0 results for most of the processor upgrades available for this machine. These results are what the individual manufactures publish for their cards. In other words the speed trials were run by the manufacturer. For an independent evaluation of these cards check the Processor Upgrade Page to see if we have results available. The bar graphs below express results as a percentage of improvement over the base machine, which receives a score of 100%. Further down the page you will find a table with the actual MacBench score.

MacBench Absolute Scores

Processor Upgrade Card

MacBench 4.0 Processor Score

StarMax 3000/240 376
Vimage Vpower PM4400 G3/240/120/512K 749
Sonnet Crescendo G3L2//240/120/512K 740
Newer MAXpower G3/260/130/512K 875
Sonnet Crescendo G3/L2/300/150/512K 930
Vimage Vpower PM4400 G3/300/150/1MB 1039
Sonnet Crescendo G3/L2/300/150/1MB 1045
Newer MAXpowr G3-L2B 300/1MB/200 1100