If you want to go this route then I suggest that you buy one of the Slot Loading iMacs running from 500Mhz to 700Mhz. Obviously the higher the number the faster the machine. Aim high if possible. All these machines have a G3 processor and, as long as they have greater than 128MB of RAM, will run Panther easily and Tiger quite acceptably. Tiger requires more RAM.
HD space is sometimes a problem on earlier machines but they all come with at least 10Gb and up to 60Gb. However, a regular IDE Hard Drive of a much larger capacity can be installed in the iMac.
The iMac also takes regular PC133 SDRAM sticks in two slots.
I have Tiger running on a 600Mhz SL iMac so it can be done.
Do remember though, it will not be the screaming demon like a G5 or even a whirling dervish like a G4. That said, it will not be a limp along Leslie, either
Hope this helps
I am curious about Macs but I don?t want to shell out big bucks to try them out. I know there is the Mac mini, but I think $500 is still pretty steep. I see on Ebay there are several older 400-700MHz G3 iMacs in the $125-250 range and they claim that these systems can run OS X - Panther or Tiger. Of course I realize that these machines will be much slower than the new G5 rockets. This price range is more in line with what I?m willing to spend but would like the advice of some Mac experts. Thanks