PCI Cards

USB 2.0 PCI Cards

A USB 2.0 PCI card does not have to be a “Mac” card to work in OS X.
The only real requirement is the NEC chipset.
As long as the card has the NEC chipset, stated as Mac compatible or not, the card will be supported in OS X 10.4.3 and later.
Pictured is the chip on a Ratoc USB 2.0 PCI card. I use two of these, and have no problems with them.
With OS X 10.5.6 and the 2008 iPod Nano, the QS doesn’t freeze during wake from sleep like earlier iPod’s.
Another USB 2.0 PCI card, the System Talks card, also works with no unique problems, under Tiger and Leopard in the Sawtooth.

Pictured is a System Talks USB 2.0 controller, which I use in two G4 machines.
This is a WinPC controller, but works natively in OS X 10.4x and 10.5x due to the NEC chipset.

I have posted extensively on the subject of USB 2.0 in Apple Discussions. So, rather than go through all the information here, I made a USB 2.0 page on the Blog. 

Use of USB 2.0 PCI Cards and the NEC chipset

Hard Drive Controllers

Acard 6280M rev 1.0
The Acard is an ATA/133 hard drive controller which allows up to 4 ATA drives to be connected.
Beyond the obvious benefit of connecting more drives, large drives are supported, and can be of great benefit to Sawtooth and Gigabit Ethernet owners who are limited to 137GB (128GB formatted).

Drive compatibility can be an issue. Check compatibility at

Excellent write up concerning performance:

Firmtek Seritek 1Ve2+2
The Firmtek Seritek 1Ve2+2 is a 2 port internal, 2 port external PCI-X controller for SATA drives.

The card is an ideal expansion card to allow any G4 or AGP graphics G5 user to use or add SATA drives.

The use of SATA drives in a G4 can be highly beneficial to system performance.
For comparisons on how SATA drives compare to ATA, and how eSATA compares to USB 2.0 and Firewire, see my
hard drive benchmarks.