The standard disclaimer - This is how I did it.  It worked for me.  If you explode your G5, Radeon X800 XT, or your house, car, boat, etc.  I am not liable!  I am providing information based on my own knowledge and experience.  I believe that all steps necessary are included, but if something is missing, I'm sorry in advance.  Anytime you work with electronics you should observe caution, and use anti static mats, wrist straps, etc. so as not to damage your sensitive electronic components.

Now, on to the introduction!

I'm pretty new to the Mac scene, but I've been given a pretty nice PowerMac G5, and I have finally found the best video card (with an ADC port) to use with it and the Apple Cinema Display.  Being a PC user, I had no idea what ADC was, but after some research, here's what I discovered - You don't need a power cord for your monitor!  The power comes from the video card, along with a USB connection so you can plug USB sticks n' stuff into your monitor.

This creates a problem, though, because you can't use Apple's cinema display with a video card with standard DVI out only unless you buy the (still) pricey DVI to ADC converter, which runs around $100 used.  Also, it has to be a 'Mac' version card - or a PC card that has been 'flashed', but I'm not going into that here because I'm only just starting to learn about that.

That being said, I went on the hunt for the best card to use in my older PowerPC Mac.  Again, not being an Apple guy, I didn't know that this run of PowerMac's were the last to use the PowerPC CPU.  After this version, Apple went with Intel, and PPC has been left in the shadows of time to fend for itself.  You can't upgrade to OS X 10.6, and many plugins like Adobe have dropped PPC support.  I like the underdog, though, so this machine is just for me!  It's fast, quiet, and has the nicest case I have ever had the pleasure to own.

I finally located a working Radeon X800 XT card for my G5 after a long search and the acquisition of several non-working cards.  Don't get me wrong, I don't think anyone was trying to rip me off, but these cards apparently run hot, and that seems to be the problem with the broken cards that I ended up with.  

** Just be warned - these cards are pretty finicky, and you may get a good one or you may not! **

After getting a working video card, I began the search for a cooler that would work with the Radeon X800 XT, and I found a new Zalman VF900-Cu Heatsink on Amazon.com!  (at the time of this instructable's writing, JURRASIC PHOTOS had 9 left)  It included heat sinks for the Video RAM as well, which is a plus, since one of the cards that I ended up with had some fried letters on a VRAM chip on the bottom of the card.

I read all that I could find about this install, but most people just told me about what they did - no pictures.  I like pictures, so I decided to make an instructable that had instructions AND pictures.. Hope it helps you old-tech lovers out!

Step 1: Remove the old Heatsink

Removing the old heatsink is pretty straightforward.  I unplugged the fan from the card, flipped it over, then removed the larger screw on the bottom right as you are looking at the back of the card, contact edge towards you.

I removed the two screws holding the heatsink onto the GPU by loosening each one a few turns at a time, first one, then the other.  This makes sure you don't place uneven pressure on the chip.

Then gently remove the heatsink with a small twisting motion.  Now it's time to clean the GPU off (and the old heatsink as well - you never know when you may need it!)

I use plenty of cotton swabs - first I use dry ones to remove the excess thermal paste, then after it's pretty clean, I use 91% Isopropyl Alcohol to finish the clean.

The old thermal paste was dry and chalky, and I have read that heatsink, or thermal compound only lasts 3-5 years max.  This card came out around 2005, so I'm sure it's time for replacement!  

yes I agree pictures make things much more easy to understand! what is a g5? where did you buy this heatsink?
amanda- As I have been learning more about Apple computers (by countless hours of tinkering) I came across a page that has a good layout of where the G5 is in the Apple lineup:<br> <br> <a href="http://www.thescreamonline.com/technology/applehistory/applehistory.html" rel="nofollow">http://www.thescreamonline.com/technology/applehistory/applehistory.html</a><br> <br> I hope that adds a little more light to the subject!<br> <br> <br>
Go here to learn more about the older Apple PowerMac G5:<br> <br> <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power_Mac_G5" rel="nofollow">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power_Mac_G5</a><br> <br> I got the heatsink online at Amazon.com - The seller had several new boxed units for around $35 - search for Jurassic Photos and look for the Zalman VF900-Cu!

About This Instructable



Bio: I usually end up doing an instructable because I have to figure out how to do something myself. I just get pictures during the process ... More »
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