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MicroQuadra 630

Quadra 630 Hack Project

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#1 Floofies

Floofies

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Posted 18 November 2016 - 08:23 PM

This is an anchor thread for a Quadra 630 project I am starting, which will receive periodic updates as the project progresses.

 

The primary goal of this project is to build a custom, minimal vertical case for the Quadra 630 logic board. The case will not support internal expansion except for the PDS slot. All other peripherals and devices (CD-ROM, Floppy) will be made external. I have already created a 50-Pin to C50/DB-25 SCSI adapter for the CD-ROM drive.

 

For materials, I want to use wood and perhaps black acrylic. I recall seeing a similar wooden AIO project once- a replica of an actual Apple design that never came to fruition -but I can't find it for the life of me!

 

The project's main goals, in order of importance:

  • Find a working CF Card (or SD Card) to IDE adapter. (There will be no room for a traditional hard disk in the case)
  • Construct a minimal vertical case that will house only the logic board, PSU, CF/SD Card, Video-out board, and Front Panel Controller.
  • Construct or hack together a smaller PSU. (Not required, but very convenient!)
  • Create matching external enclosures for the Floppy and CD-ROM drives.
  • Create a special cable and ports for the Floppy drive.
  • Create a special audio cable and port for the CD-ROM drive.
  • Modify the Front Panel Controller, repurposing the rear programmer's switch to create a light-up power button.
  • Modify the video-out board for integrated VGA output.

But why the Quadra 630?

Along with other Macs that use the edge-connector and wiring harness, the Q630's internal design is very modular; a prime target for a custom case. It's also worth mentioning the Q630 has one of the worst designed cases I've ever seen Apple produce. In terms of ergonomics and usability (You can put your monitor on top of it...), it scores very high; but from an engineering perspective it's unnecessarily bulky for the amount of expansion it offers. If you never utilize the video or communications slots, you have a lot of dead space. There's also the fact that I generally dislike horizontal computer cases nowadays: LCD monitors are small enough that finding space is now a non-issue, resulting in the Q630 taking up way more space than I prefer.

 

Expect some chunky photos of the early prototype soon! Cheers. :)


Edited by Floofies, 18 November 2016 - 08:28 PM.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#2 360alaska

360alaska
  • 6502

Posted 18 November 2016 - 10:38 PM

Hmm, I think you should consider using a 475 board. It will be much easier to do what your trying to do.



#3 Byrd

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Posted 19 November 2016 - 12:46 AM

Sounds good, it's been a while since I've heard of a vintage Mac case mod.

 

I'd also not bother about running the floppy and optical drive externally, when you could always plug in an external floppy or SCSI CD-ROM drive easily enough. A smaller external PSU might also be worthwhile looking into.


:: Current project Mac: PB1400 resto

#4 Floofies

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Posted 19 November 2016 - 04:11 PM

The board also needs $40 in new caps. I don't have the cash for that or much else :p I'm just using what's readily available to me.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#5 Macdrone

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Posted 19 November 2016 - 08:30 PM

40 dollars in caps?  who are you going through?  


Lots O' Macs, but now thinning the lots.


#6 Floofies

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Posted 20 November 2016 - 06:22 PM

Suppliers like Digikey and Mouser. For reference they're 3x derated.

Some initial work! Starting to understand the wiring harness and Q630 PSU. I found a Dell SFF PSU that looks to be a great replacement candidate. The 5v Trickle output will have to be replicated somehow. Lucky me, I actually have 2 Q630 PSU's. Experiment time :)

The CF to PATA adapter arrives on Monday.


IMG_20161120_130529980.jpg IMG_20161120_132006744.jpg IMG_20161120_131434678.jpg

Edited by Floofies, 20 November 2016 - 06:26 PM.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#7 360alaska

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Posted 20 November 2016 - 07:52 PM

Atx power supplies have a 5v trickle

#8 Floofies

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Posted 20 November 2016 - 08:50 PM

Is that the 5vFP (Flea Power) 2A output on the Dell PSU? I'm pretty sure it must be switched to this mode, and cannot output normal voltages while doing so. This begs the question, when does the Q630 need the 5v 0.08A TRKL output?


Edited by Floofies, 20 November 2016 - 08:51 PM.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#9 Floofies

Floofies

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 01:30 AM

Doing some late-night open testing with the volt meter. It was a great rear-end clencher when I shorted some of the pins on the Valkyrie chip with the test leads. :D

Attached Thumbnails

  • IMG_20161120_202722075.jpg

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#10 CC_333

CC_333
  • 68LC040

Posted 21 November 2016 - 04:37 AM

Did the Valkyrie live?

 

This is a neat project, by the way.

 

I shall be watching it closely...

 

c


Main Macs: Early '09 Mac Pro, Mid '12 MacBook Pro 13" --- Secondary Macs: Early '08 Mac Pro, Mid '12 MacBook Pro 15"
Playthings: Mac SE/30, 3.0 GHz Mavericks-based HackServe, Many others... --- Desired: Lisa, Kanga PowerBook G3, Apple IIc, Apple II, Spare parts, etc.


#11 Floofies

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 04:30 PM

The video output went nuts and the chip crashed, but all is well after a reboot.

I have partially mapped out the power architecture on the logic board. There's some odd stuff on there! For instance, there are whole areas that are completely disconnected from the PSU on the board, with unpopulated resistor pads and the like. I've got a good stock of mystery questions for the hardware engineers now, lol. I also found that parts of the RTC system were totally unused, including blank space for a rectangular oscillator.

That's a tangent, of course... Now to get back on track. I am ordering one of those 24-pin ATX extenders to make an adapter out of. I read some of Trash80's ATX conversion adventures, so I have a general idea of how to let the logc board control the ATX PSU.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#12 Bunsen

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 03:09 PM

Have you considered a picoPSU DC-DC ATX converter board and an external 12V power brick?  It's sort of cheating, but you could save some space in your tower and hide the brick behind the desk.  NB they can be found a lot cheaper on eBay than via that link.
 

The case will not support internal expansion except for the PDS slot.

 
No AV card? CommSlot ethernet?
 

Find a working CF Card (or SD Card) to IDE adapter.


Get an IDE to single CF card converter with no electronics on it. CF is a subset of IDE, so it just needs a pin-to-pin converter and you're golden. An SD card converter has a controller/converter IC on it, which will be a bottleneck and a possible source of headaches.
 

Modify the video-out board for integrated VGA output.

 

To save having to use a Mac-VGA converter?
 
 Are you planning to use the wiring harness from the 630, modify it, or make up your own?


have you searched? Seeks: Nubus PDS DSP PB170 Newton; TRS-80 III/4; CBM BBC SX-64 CX5M Likes: 8bit luggable palmtop terminal NC tablet audio MIDI analog FM drum synth steam&dieselpunk; 1930-1980 lab/comm/mil Score! NC100 PB190 Q950 IIe-PDS


#13 MJ313

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 03:18 PM

Get an IDE to single CF card converter with no electronics on it. CF is a subset of IDE, so it just needs a pin-to-pin converter and you're golden. 

 

This one was recommended by 360alaska, somewhere on this forum.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/271583773005


A growing pile of Macs.


#14 Floofies

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 06:17 PM

The PSU sure is a puzzler to me, but I am anything but an electrical engineer. The 12-pin plug was easy to map out, but the 6-pin header is another story. I was only able to identify the 5v TRKL line... It is on the 6-pin header, among other things. I have no idea what's going through the rest of the cable, and finding resources describing the power circuit is almost impossible, so I may not be able to replace the PSU at all. Maybe someone who has done this can chime in?

I went with this CF/PATA adapter: https://www.amazon.c...aw/d/B0026OYEEQ

I was able to format and mount a 32MB tester! I will now purchase a larger CF card.

To clarify some things:
I will be uncrimping the A/V header and SCSI from the cabling harness completely. The old CD-ROM drive will instead use the DB25 SCSI port. The Comm. slot and Video slot are not in use, and probably never will be.

I had not considered the picoPSU, although having an external PSU was an idea I had early on. For now, I want to stick to internal.

The integrated VGA thing is more of a side project. It's a little idea to make a drop-in replacement for the video-out board itself. We'll see how far I get with that after the main project is completed.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#15 Floofies

Floofies

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 08:39 PM

Well, that didn't work out too well. The CF card formatted and mounted using a Disk Tools 1 floppy... then it stopped working. HDT and Drive Setup can scan and identify the device just fine, but now formatting fails and it won't mount anymore, even on my MDD. HDT now says it has a 1024GB capacity, wat.

I'm not sure where the problem is here.
IMG_20161122_155710249.jpg

Edited by Floofies, 22 November 2016 - 08:57 PM.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#16 Compgeke

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 02:36 AM

Sounds to me like the CF card is a dud. Usually when they go they quit mounting or show up as a far smaller or larger size.

#17 Floofies

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 04:34 AM

That and I'm seeing it says "ATA/CAM Compliant: no", and is in removable disk mode. Pretty sure both of those could be an issue.

Looking for a working card now. This one comes in fixed disk mode, and should work: https://www.amazon.c...aw/d/B00APVL9GS

Edited by Floofies, 23 November 2016 - 04:54 AM.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#18 Trash80toHP_Mini

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 01:06 AM

You shouldn't need to go out of your way to make a custom VGA adapter if you have adequate depth behind the port. Use a rectangular VGA adapter with its ass sticking out the backplane and the stock card bolted up to it inside your case.

 

vgaadaptersswitches.jpg

 

I've used the ENHANCE "Liberty" adapters inside a couple of Quadra 630 based Macs to get them "closer to the wall." [:)]


jt [8]
Trash Hauler: call sign: eight-ball

C.O. AC130H SpecOps 68kMLAAF

#19 Floofies

Floofies

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 01:48 AM

Hehe, yeah, that is my backup plan exactly! It would be very convenient, but if you want to switch resolutions to the point that you need to adjust the adapter (DIP switches on the thing), you would have to open the case to do so. My "plan" (in quotes because there isn't really one!) would be to bypass the video-out board completely, foregoing the need to manipulate whatever kind if signal the board outputs. The desired result would be a working replacement that doesn't need adjustment. I'm not sure if it's possible at all, but I'm very interested in trying.

As for CF... I had a big "uh oh!" moment when I found Elfen's post here: https://68kmla.org/f...-a-hd/?p=288691

The Syba adapter he says to avoid (and indeed, it's been reported to have issues) is the exact adapter I have! I ordered it from Startech.com and had no idea it was the same one until I saw his picture of it. The adapter's "Slave present" LED lights up on the Q630, even though there is none! There's even a review or two that states master/slave detection issues. I'll probably try the adapter that was reccomended in this thread.

After looking at some CF cards, there are some things bugging me. Industrial grade cards, while best suited for an IDE replacement (designed for it, in fact), are way more expensive than "consumer" CF cards, and offer way less capacity per dollar. I also found out that there is a way to put CF cards, which are in an OEM removable disk mode, into fixed disk mode. This means, as long as the card is ATA compliant and supports PIO 3 (or lower), I may be able to put it in fixed disk mode, and get it working in the Q630. I'm not even sure if it's something I need to worry about in the first place, though.

What I'll do now is purchase a cheaper, higher capacity "consumer" CF card that fits the bill. If it doesn't work, I'll try the industrial grade card I posted about earlier.

Edited by Floofies, 24 November 2016 - 01:58 AM.

"Steve insists that we're shipping in early 1982, and won't accept answers to the contrary. The best way to describe the situation is a term from Star Trek. Steve has a reality distortion field."
Guy L. "BudTribble, 1981.


#20 Trash80toHP_Mini

Trash80toHP_Mini

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 01:58 AM

Once you've built your own or matched an adapter to the native resolution of your display, there's no need for tweaking. If tweaking might be necessary, the easiest thing would be to place the VGA port vertically on the very edge of your case and use a hole saw in just the right spot for access to the "Liberty" dial. :quadra:


jt [8]
Trash Hauler: call sign: eight-ball

C.O. AC130H SpecOps 68kMLAAF





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