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About Franklinstein

  • Birthday January 20

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    Tokyo, Japan
  • Interests
    Macs, Japanese cars, disco

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    Network infrastructure technician

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  1. Franklinstein

    601 processor replacement experiments

    Right, so the 750 has more pins than the 740 because it has the L2 cache interface, but the 740 could possibly (if it as the capability) use the bus-level L2 cache originally equipped to the x100 machines. The 740 is designed to be pin and signal compatible with the 603e, and the 603e is often equipped with a bus-level L2 cache of some sort, so you'd think the 740 would also operate with one. Apparently there were 1MB cache modules available for the WGS models but I don't think I have ever seen one. As for later chips, the 750CX has a 256k L2 cache, the 750FX a 512k L2 cache, and the 750GX a 1MB L2 cache, all on-die at full processor speed. Because it's on-die, the L2 cache should always be on and available by default, which should avoid the need for any of the L2 cache extensions used by typical G3 upgrades. Plus, these chips would not require the external cache chips or associated support devices, the lack of which would undoubtedly simplify a project like this. Also these chips run from 400MHz-1.2GHz, depending on which model is used, while the basic 750 generally tops out at 500MHz. I don't know if the 750CX has ever been used in an upgrade of any sort; any >500MHz G3 upgrades I have seen have used FX or GX chips. It looks like the best idea would be to use a QFP-to-BGA adapter with a 750FX on top along with a DIP switch arrangement for speed selection, and an external VRM that plugs into one of the disk drive power connectors. The only unaddressed problem that remains is heat management: the stock heat sink will no longer fit properly (nor will it likely be adequate). Some G3 upgrades (PowerLogix, I think) used a type that clipped directly to the processor and twisted to tighten. That would probably be the best approach here, if a source of these heat sinks was found. The only other solution would be thermal adhesive of some sort to permanently attach a generic heat sink.
  2. Franklinstein

    601 processor replacement experiments

    A quick comparison of the relative sizes of a ZIF module's PGA and the 601 suggests that it would be difficult to build a QFP-to-ZIF adapter, unless there's a BGA version of the ZIF socket available (I've only ever seen through-hole). So that may not work. I'm pretty sure any of the BGA PPC chips would fit well within the confines of a QFP adapter along with a few very small support devices. Worst case you can run some wires to it from an external power regulator if necessary. With that, maybe it would be possible to use a 750CX or 750FX? That way you get your L2 cache and potentially higher clocks (the CX and FX support more than a 10x bus multiplier).
  3. Franklinstein

    PRAM battery

    In your specific instance, the SE/30 is a hard power Mac and therefore will lose its PRAM settings without a good battery; it does not receive trickle power at all when it is shut down.
  4. Franklinstein

    PRAM battery

    Short answer: With a dead PRAM battery, most soft-power Macs will retain PRAM settings if left plugged in (and the main power switch in the ON position) because they are provided trickle power. All hard power Macs with a dead PRAM battery will lose their PRAM settings if switched off. Long answer: Except for weird old boxes like the early II series, a soft-power Mac (including PowerBooks with a good main battery) will always receive power as long as they are plugged into the wall (or have a good, charged main battery) and the main power switch (usually only on compacts) is ON. This is because a low, constant voltage is required to enable the Mac to turn on when the soft power button is pressed, so the engineers figured 'why not give the PRAM battery a break and just draw from this voltage when available?' This has the side effect of extending the life of the PRAM battery because the battery does not see a draw as long as the Mac is plugged in. The early II series used an odd arrangement that required two batteries, one for PRAM and one to run the soft power circuit, so they were oddballs and won't boot at all if one or both of those batteries are dead. Of course the hard power Macs do not have a steady trickle from the power supply so they will almost instantly lose their PRAM settings if power is removed. I'm not sure why modern Cuda-equipped Macs get weird about booting with a dead PRAM battery. I assume it has something to do with the Cuda's internal processor booting cold at power-up and failing to initialize properly, thus keeping the rest of the machine from booting without a hard power double-tap or punch of the reset button. One thing to consider if you're leaving your soft power Mac plugged in all the time: they constantly draw power (obviously) and therefore are subject to some stresses even if they're not being actively used. For example, shut down your soft power Mac, come back in an hour, and feel the case near the power supply. You'll notice that it's still warm, and this is because it's still operating to supply that trickle power. This not only wears components out faster but also exposes the power supply to incoming voltage transients that could damage it. Thus I recommend not leaving your soft power Mac plugged in 24/7 just for the sake of preserving PRAM unless you're also using it on a daily basis. If it's a once-a-month hobby thing, just reset the date and time the next time you use it. These things aren't getting any younger.
  5. Franklinstein

    601 processor replacement experiments

    Incidentally, this is why I'm trying to get partially defective PowerBook 5x0 series PPC upgrade cards with BGA processors: the PowerPC 740 is pin and signal compatible with the 603e, so if a transplant were successful, you would have an almost-G3 (there would be no L2 cache of any sort) PowerBook 5x0. The primary point in this endeavor would be faster clocks (I anticipate it would run between 200~300MHz) at the same or lower power level, but also the 740 has 2x the L1 cache of the 603e and a more efficient internal architecture so it performs faster clock-for-clock. Granted the system bus would still be a huge limitation but you'd still notice an improvement. Apparently (I read it on the internet so it must be true!) Newer was prototyping G3 upgrades for the PB 5x0 series but stopped because it seems that the molds for the processor card socket had been misplaced and there were no more sockets available.
  6. Franklinstein

    601 processor replacement experiments

    Bah. I hadn't got around to comparing those yet and am now sad Not too sad, though; it's just a fun potential for experiment is all. Also useful for honing my SMD rework skills. I wonder if they also redesigned the 601v to be intentionally disruptive? I am guessing no, since the whole PPC project was in a state of turmoil for the first few years as they fine-tuned the platform. I mean, the PPC 740 is both pin and signal compatible with the BGA 603e so at least if they were being vexatious at first they changed their mind in later years. As far as using a crazy QFP-to-BGA adapter, I can see how it may be physically possible: build a board with the 304-pin QFP pinout that aligns to whichever chip you're replacing (apparently the 601, 601v, and 604 all have the same number of pins but different pinout) and send the signals to BGA lands that correspond to whichever device you're going to install (604, 603/740, 750, maybe 7400?). The QFP board would be physically large enough to wire and mount a BGA device in its center so it wouldn't be tremendously difficult, except you would probably also need to work out a VRM of some sort to account for the lower voltages used by the newer devices. Or better yet: send the lines to a ZIF socket! BOOM: instant ZIF-upgradeable NuBus Power Macs, complete with whatever L2 cache is on the ZIF module. GENIUS! Somebody with time and talent should make that happen. I would buy a couple. I mean, a 400MHz G3 6100 (of course I would clock the system bus to 40MHz at the same time)? Super awesome.
  7. The only unique Asia-specific clones I have seen have come from Pioneer, and they are awesome: The MPC-LX100 was the only official 68k clone ever sold anywhere (no, it's not a NuBus Power Mac but I don't really want to make another post for it unless there's high demand for a separate one). This was basically a 63x/58x board with a full 68040, two RAM slots, and a full compliment of A/V ports installed in an entirely custom case with an excellent integrated stereo w/sub sound system. The board was sourced from Apple and it's really nothing unique except that the processor was fitted with a copper slab to help dissipate heat. The MPC-GX1 was the first available PPC model. It was basically a 6100/66AV in that same custom case used by the MPC-LX100. Of course it's a bit different internally to accommodate the different logic board configuration but the basic case, sound system, and Pioneer-sourced CDROM remain. The MPC_GX1 Limited is the same as the GX1 except that it has a factory overclock to 80MHz (it's still an original 66MHz chip) and a custom heatsink on the processor. I have no idea if Apple supplied the overclocked 6100 board or if Pioneer had it modified before assembly into the case. The MPC-LX200 essentially had the same case as the MPC-LX100, but it offered an internal MO drive and TV tuner as options. It was a 62xx/52xx-based PPC board with a 100MHz 603e. Sadly it can't be easily upgraded to a faster logic board without major surgery but it's still a cool box. If anyone wants pics of the LX100 or GX1 I can put some on here. I don't have an LX200 yet but rest assured I plan to acquire one when it becomes available.
  8. Franklinstein

    Asian Macintosh PCI clones

    I've been researching and buying, when available, Mac clone models sold only in Asia. My findings so far: Akia: they basically sell UMAX systems (S and J/C series) in cheaper cases, complete with UMAX stencils on the boards. Not really worth seeking out unless you're a completist. Tatung: Basically the same as any other Tanzania-based clone. Again, not really worth it unless you're a completist. Pioneer: Never sold a PCI-based clone. They had a 604 model in the works that was sadly canceled at the end of the whole licensing debacle (it was probably going to use a Tanzania II board in a new tower case). They do have a 68k and NuBus PPC clones but obviously those don't go in this section. If somebody really wants a pic of the one Akia MicroBook Power 604e tower that I have I suppose I can post a few. It's pretty underwhelming though.
  9. Franklinstein

    Powermac 9600 G3 problems

    Sonnet usually recommends deinterleaving the RAM when installing a processor upgraded, which may explain why you get different results with various RAM configurations. I also suggest power: the caps in the power supply dry out and/or leak and reduce the available power going to the logic board, which will cause problems. Unfortunately there isn't a simple Mac power supply tester (unless you have a G3 MT, B&W G3, non-ADC G4, or any clone with a standard ATX connector) so it's difficult to diagnose properly. It's about time for major surgery to replace capacitors on that thing going by its age alone.
  10. Since I started diving back into these NuBus models, I was curious if I could replace the 601 chip with faster ones. This is possible, sort of: The original 601 was built using a single 5v power supply and ran at frequencies between 60 and 80MHz. So yes, it's entirely possible to take a 6100/60 and swap in an 80MHz processor. This isn't really worth it on the 7100, 8100, or 9150, since they already had 80MHz options available; I wouldn't bother unless I had to replace a damaged chip anyway. The 601v was a mild redesign using a smaller manufacturing process, which allowed it to operate between 100 and 120MHz, and a dual power system: 2.5v and 5v. Unfortunately this new power system made it incompatible with the original 601, precluding its use in anything except the 8100/100 (the 601v-capable 9150 already ran at 120MHz), which could then be stepped to 120MHz if you could find the faster chip. I haven't yet investigated but I am curious as to whether the original QFP 604 is pin compatible with the 601v. A 604-based 8100 could be an interesting machine.
  11. Franklinstein

    *sigh* I broke my 2400c

    It's possible that you unseated the processor card and/or I/O card from the logic board. All of the cards are supposed to come out and go back into the chassis together because it's close to impossible to reseat the cards when they're in the case. You could try disassembling the computer and removing the inner frame stiffener with the processor card and I/O card attached (be really careful because they're not secured well and you'll need to be gentle), then invert the logic board and press on the individual cards over the connector area until you're satisfied that they're seated properly. Reassemble while avoiding flexing the assembly and it should work. If it doesn't, make sure to try the PRAM reset voodoo that these things seem to require every now and then. It's pretty unlikely that the new hard drive is grounding out on the logic board, but you may want to look while you're in there. I'm pretty sure there's a plastic insulator on the board to prevent this from happening but it may have come loose/become damaged somehow. Also you can remove the backup battery at the same time; sometimes when it gets weak it can prevent the machine from booting properly, and it will leak if it sits in there too long.
  12. Franklinstein

    Warning! Exploding Maxell PRAM Batteries

    Just to add a bit: Yes, the Maxells seem to be the worst of the 1/2 AA lithiums, but the white-and-green ones are also pretty bad. Tadirans (purple and black) usually fail the least catastrophically but given enough time and/or poor storage conditions they too will leak. If you notice, on the models with the square battery packs with the leads, the wires act as wicks when the batteries leak: the electrolyte travels from the bad battery all the way to the connector where it begins corroding the logic board connector and beyond. It's usually visible as a greenish blue tint on one of the wires at the connector. If the leakage spills beyond the battery pack the velcro usually absorbs a lot of it which thankfully localizes and reduces the damage done. This mode of failure also happens when PowerBook backup batteries leak. Yes, they will and do leak. The electrolyte will not only leak out of the battery pack and corrode anything around it, but is also wicked to the terminal of the connector where it inflicts damage to the logic board. If you collect PowerBooks of any vintage, I highly recommend removing the backup batteries from all of them. Some still have replacement battery packs available, if you really need to be able to sleep-swap the main battery. I have yet to see one of the soldered backup batteries from the original 1x0 series cause any problems but it's likely only a matter of time before they do. Also, do not store the PowerBook with its main battery installed. This should be common knowledge but from as many ruined models as I've seen it apparently isn't.
  13. Franklinstein

    Demand for Performa 630CD?

    There were sort of two different versions of these machines: the 63x and 64x. The primary difference is that the 64x has two RAM slots where the 63x has just the one; they're mostly identical otherwise. Some of the 63x machines may have had the double RAM slot board, but I can't tell you off hand which they were (thanks, confusing model numbers!). They weren't super great machines, but the game Marathon (which is freely downloadable now, btw) has an option to take advantage of the Valkyrie video controller used in these boards. I think that was the only software that ever really did so, aside from maybe an Apple video program of some sort. For me the model to get would be the 640 DOS Compatible. They're very interesting in that unlike the other DOS Compatible Macs that put the DOS card in a PDS/NuBus/PCI slot, the 640's DOS card physically displaced the 68040 and plugged directly into the processor socket on the logic board, with the '040 being relocated to a special socket on the DOS card. It also used an LC PDS card to provide the game port (and some other low-level functions I'm sure). Another interesting tidbit is that the Pioneer MPC-LX100, which was the only officially licensed 68k clone, used the double RAM slot version of the 63x/64x board. It also used a full 68040 with a copper slab glued onto the processor to aid in heat dissipation. Very cool machine.
  14. Franklinstein

    Colour Classic, 575 board & PowerPC

    So your upgrade goes in the LC PDS? I didn't know they had one in that form that upgraded to PPC. I know there was an official Apple upgrade for at least the LC 475 that actually physically displaced the original '040 during installation, then reinstalled the '040 into a special socket on the card. AFAIK, the 575 board won't work properly in a CC without either a resolution mod or a ResEdit hack, as mentioned above, so a first guess would probably be that your problem is related to the resolution. Do you hear the hard drive operating? Did you try booting from a floppy and listen to whether it tries to run or not? It's also possible that the PPC upgrade is drawing too much power which prevents the system from booting properly. These machines are usually said to have weak power supplies from stock, which is one of the reasons for changing the analog board out at the same time as a huge upgrade.
  15. Franklinstein

    Quadra 950 Capacitor burned (C26)

    Yes I was mostly asking if you had fixed yours, Alex. I was curious as to whether it worked or if yours blew up the replacement too. I have sort of the same tendency: get machine, fix/upgrade/play with it for a bit (or fail and get frustrated/lose interest), then put it on a shelf and move to the next project. Lately I have been on a Color Classic/NuBus Power Mac kick. With my Q950, as I mentioned, it seems to mostly work without that capacitor (still haven't checked Ethernet or serial ports) but it's such a huge machine and I really don't have room to set it up so it's in the closet along with other boxes that I don't really have a use for at the moment. It's partially because this machine has the 5 drive cage and I have no drives to fill it with. It would be fun to use one as a vintage server if I acquired a stack of functional hard drives one day, especially if I got one of the WGS PDS SCSI cards to use with it.