Does It Make Any Sense Whatsoever To Buy A ZIF Socket G3/400Mhz Upgrade? - Benchmarks and Analysis

By Mike Juhaus

Sonnet has just announced a price drop of approximately $250 on their Encore G3/366/183/1MB ZIF socket processor upgrade for G3 Macintoshes. The new price of the card is about $700 (the new price should be showing up at retailers shortly, though you may find the old price at the moment). With 400Mhz ZIF socket cards selling for over $1,200 we thought we would take a look at whether you are just wasting that extra $500-600 that you would have to shell out if you opted for the 400Mhz card over the 366Mhz.

Below you will find MacBench benchmarks comparing the two Encore cards from Sonnet expressed as a percentage of improvement.

The actual MacBench 4.0 results are 1350 for the 366Mhz card and 1475 for the 400Mhz card.

So you are paying roughly $600 more for an extra 9% of performance! How does that effect the overall price/performance ratio of the card?

Let's see, card price divided by MacBench score gives us the following cost per performance point:

Encore G3/366 = 52 cents per performance point (700/1350=.52)
Encore G3/400 = 88 cents per performance point (1300/1475=.88)

Or the Encore G3/400 is 69% more expensive per performance point than the Encore G3/366 - what would you buy?

How do these cards perform compared to their targeted machines ........

Conclusion: There is clearly at this time, given the price/performance differences, little reason to opt for the 400Mhz cards unless, like Gates and Trump, you are the kind of person that lights your cigars with 100 dollar bills! Will this price/performance disparity last? Probably not. One of two things are perhaps going on; Sonnet is phasing out the 366Mhz card and wants to clear out inventory before faster cards come out or there is going to be a general lowering of prices on all ZIF cards coming and the 366Mhz cards are just the first.

Mike is a freelance writer and writes occasional articles for MacSpeedZone

What do you think is going on? Should you buy now or later? Head to our community bulletin board and let us know!

Internal Links

  • Processor Card Upgrade Index
  • Graphics Card Upgrades Index
  • Upgrades By Machine
  • MacSpeedZone's Hardware Product Index
  • External Links

  • All Online Macintosh Hardware and Software Reviews
  • Sonnet's Web Site
  • Guest Column Index

    For Free Macintosh Hardware Click Here