Daystar debuts 1.92 GHz Apple iMac G4 Flat Panel upgrade

Daystar Technology, an Apple Authorized Reseller and Mac Technology Integrator, announced today, that it has expanded its iMac Flat Panel CPU upgrade line, announced last month. The upgrade previously was limited to 1.35 GHz for the earlier iMac 700/800 MHz systems. The company now is able to offer 1.92 GHz upgrades for owners of the later model 1.0 and 1.25 GHz iMac Flat Panel systems.

The upgrades utilize the most powerful G4 CPUs available today. In additional to nearly double the CPU cylces, the upgrades also double the high-performance L2 cache size from 256 KB to 512 KB. The net result is more than 2x real-world performance for all iMac Flat Panel owners.

Daystar is using the latest and highest performing 74x series CPUs available today, the Freescale 7457 and 7447A. The CPU outperforms any 745x shipped by Apple, and boasts a large 512 KB internal L2 cache. The large cache allows the iMac G4 to perform at full speed, even without an external L3 cache.

Like the MAChSpeed G4 Pismo and Lombard upgrades, the iMac Flat Panel upgrade is a full system upgrade. The user orders on line, then sends their system to Daystar via Daystar’s custom shipping container. Daystar has enhance this option, by offering free US Ground 3-way shipping on all orders.

The Cost of the upgrade is dependent on the speed:
• 1.35 GHZ (7457) for the iMac 700 / 800 MHz is $ 548
• 1.92 GHZ (7447A) for the iMac 1.0 / 1.25 GHz is $ 588

Features include:
• xBench 1.2 Scores jump from the mid teens to the high 50’s, surpassing the fastest iMac G4, and some iMac G5s.
• Double performance for all OS operations and applications.
• Highest qualified G4 CPUs available, rated to 105c!
• Factory installation via Apple Certified Technicians.
• Daystar 21 point system test and diagnostics, with overnight burn-in tests.
• Effortless shipping with Daystar’s custom box and prepaid shipping options.
• Compatible with any Mac OS since 9.2. Including Tiger 10.4.x.
• Supports dual boot systems – works with everything you own.
• Includes XLR8 MAChSpeed Control for exclusive G4 performance / compatibility.
• All upgrades warranted at speed sold, with Daystar’s exclusive 90/728 warranty program.

More info here.


  1. I have a Daystar MAChSpeed G4 for my Pismo, and all I can say is that it’s rock solid.

    I drove to the Atlanta area to drop off my Pismo (I was home in the U.S. last summer; I wanted to meet the Daystar folks and to see what kind of operation they had going on…) and drove back to pick it up. I had the chance to speak with the President, Gary Dailey, and he really seemed to be an honest, sincere guy. I ended up adding a tray-loading superdrive to the processor upgrade and I love it!

    I would imagine that this upgrade would be a welcome addition for anyone with an iMac looking for an extra ‘bump’ in processor performance.

    As far as I’m concerned, Daystar rates 5 stars. If you have an iMac that would benefit from this upgrade, buy it.

  2. Say, you have a 17″ iMac G4-1000. That will fetch about 6-700 Dollars at ebay. The upgarde is over 600 Dollars (shipping, tax)
    Buy a Mac mini 1.42 and a 20″ Cinema Display. Same price, better performace, much better display, and a manufacturer’s warranty.
    The only exception is for people who need to stay with OS 9.

  3. This only upgrades the processor. You are still stuck with the same old graphics card and slow RAM… and MacOSX is a notorious stickler for a good graphics card and a lot of fast RAM.

    The only real benefit here comes for people doing serious CPU computations… but then again, these people should be using a PowerMac instead of an iMac.

  4. I actually had to read the headline a couple of times. I kept thinking, “1.92 GHz Display? But it’s an LCD–there’s no refresh rate…”

    C’mon, MDN! Is there such a think as an iMac G4 without a flat panel?

  5. I’m really curious to see if ANYONE has bought this. It’s unfortunate, because I’d really like to get the 1.35GHz upgrade for my iMac, but I’m not willing to pay that price, since that’s most of what I paid for the machine in the first place. But all I’ve ever read about the upgrade is “it’s too expensive”, so if nobody else is buying this, it’s unlikely to drop in price, and also likely that they’ll just pull them altogether.

    It’s a great thing to be able to do to the old iMac G4s, but it’s just plain too expensive.

  6. I agree with josepi. I would like to buy and install it myself. As an ACT I should have no problem.
    If not, I’ll wait a couple of more years and buy a new iMac, sending my iMac G4 to my family members overseas.
    jeff has a point too; the price is high for what you get.
    On the other hand I’m happy that Daystar Technology is keeping some ACTs working.

  7. I guess this is really good news for any of you folk out there who luv their ergonomic iMac. You might want more performance but you don’t want the new iMac.

    Let’s face it, there must be people like this out there.

  8. << Would be tempting at $449-499. I agree with Hagar57 >>

    $548 for a CPU that is twice as fast as the one you sent in? I care not what the video card et al is, I’m not doing graphics and would like the extra oomph from time to time. $550 is chump change compared to $1,299 (plus extra memory) for a current iMac.

  9. Thanks for the comments. I would like to address some questions presented and some mis-comments —

    First from hagar57: “The upgarde is over 600 Dollars …Buy a Mac Mini… better performance…”

    Sorry hagar 57. The Price is a Max of 588. Shipping is included, there is no tax outside of GA. And, it is much faster than a 1.42 Mac Mini, Plus it is more expandable, since the Mac Mini has fewer ports, and uses expensivie laptop drives and CD/DVD drives.

    From BeatsMe : “why a 1Ghz upgrade card for a regular G4 tower costs $199 …”

    Good question, thanks. A few reasons for the priice differences.

    We actually make less net than, if it were possible to do simple CPU daughter cards for the iMac.. The cost is in a More expensive version of the CPU and the inability to mass produce.

    Each system has a dispoportionate amount of labor, as it must be handled completely by hand from the check-in through the BGA process and installation and testing. Actually when you consider most Apple shops charge over $200 just to “service” the logic board,and the Freescale retail of the CPU is over $300, and 3-way shipping is included for a 35# box…. well, you do the math.

    From jeff: “…your are stuck with the same old graphics…”

    Not completely true. Yes, the same graphics, but there is a substaintial increase in graphics performance. This is due to the larger L2 and the faster built in AltiVec. Apple spent years writing Quartz (display postscript) to make better use of the G4 for many windowing and graphics functions, such as text rendering and smoothing. All which respond and run faster on the upgraded system.

    Fron fandango: “As far as I’m concerned, Daystar rates 5 stars. If…”

    Thanks. We have a large testimonial page, and now have a number of user reviews on the customer review base at . Anyone interested should check it out.

    We’ve done thousands of these service level upgrades, and already have completed dozens of this iMac Upgrade. Everyone is raving. The performance is night and day. The Mac was never meant to run on a 256k cache.

  10. And to address other questions and comments:

    FromMacDoctor: ” …I would like to buy and install it myself. As an ACT I should have no problem…”

    Well, you can. Daystar will allow you to remove the Logic board and send it in for upgrading (that’s how our international customers handle their upgrades). We’ve completed a fair number this way… no issues at all.

    As far as sending you the upgrade? Well, we actually remove and replace the CPU diectly on the Logic board. Daystar perfected this process on Mac’s back in 1995 on the early Macs that had soldered CPUs.

    Some competitive style PowerBook upgrade companies will buy used logic boards, fix them, upgrade them, then swap the logic boards. We DON’T do this… the logic board is detailed electronics, and we don’t want to risk someone getting someone elses possible problem logic board.

    From Ian Adams: “…m really curious to see if ANYONE has bought this…”

    Well of course! In fact the demand for this product has already sent us scrambling for faster CPU deliveries. Feel free to send me an email to . I can forward a couple customers for direct contact.

    Also, we are working with 4 Editors working on reviews… so there will be plenty of benchmarks in a month or so.

    As you may note, we have already been able to drop the price somewhat, by including the 3-way shipping. No hidden costs. Pay one price, run twice as fast. No Sales Tax, No Shipping.

    From josepi: “…Magic word is half…”

    Sorry, there are no cost savings on “installing it yourself”. We have more labor when you send the logic board only. We have to install and remove twice, since we must test the board fully before and after upgrading. Full thermal testing requires the system be locked up tight, since the inner/upper case is actually part of the heat sink in the IMFP. It is actually twice the labor for us (although we don’t charge for the extra labor).

    From Peter: “…had to read the headline a couple of times…”

    We also included the full name of the iMac G4 Flat Panel in our headline. We didn’t want it confused with G4 upgrades for the Tray Load and Slot load iMacs (which we also do).

    From torn80 “Too bad it’s so pricey.”

    Well, is is not as cheap as a CPU daughtercard upgrade. But, consider you have a 700 MHz iMac. For $550, you have a system faster than the used iMacs G4s retailing at $1200-$1300. Or for $588, you have a system that is faster than any G4 Mac ever shipped…

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