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rafthe030

Unusual questions about PDS G3 upgrades for 6/7/8100

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Not too long ago I returned on my PM 7100/80, which right now has a sonnet PDS g3 260/1M, a 4MB HPV card connected via the g3 card's ribbon cable, and one nubus slot used by an Atto SiliconExpress IV.

 

For a few reasons (among others, using a disk attached to the SEIV at the same time the G3 is enabled freezes the machine without exception) I'm looking for a comparable newertech G3 upgrade.

 

G3 upgrades sales seem to become sparse, sort of. There's a couple listings on ebay that are not reasonable to me, price-wise. While I'm unsure getting a newertech upgrade would make things any better, I have a few concerns I feel like posting here hoping it eases up deciding what to do.

 

- Can anyone confirm newertech PDS cards have fixed CPU:FSB clock ratio? Sonnet chooses settings in software, and perhaps fixed/jumper-set bus ratio would help with some quirks I'm experiencing.

 

- As far as I know, 6100, 7100 and 8100 all have the same memory architecture. So that should mean NewerTech's G3 upgrades exclusive to the 6100 are this way because the card has a CPU:FSB ratio too high for the CPU to work with a 8100/80, 7100/80 or 8100/110. So if such a card gets its PLL setting to something lower, it should just work. It would give me more options. Is there something more I should consider for this?

 

- Did anyone try using sonnet's ribbon cable to connect an HPV/AV card to a NewerTech upgrade? Did it work? Finding a Newertech G3 card WITH the ribbon cable raises the bar a lot.

 

I'm not sure I'll have answers for the last two, but I still hope.

 

Thanks!

Edited by rafthe030

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Don’t have answers to your questions but I can tell I am running a Sonnet G3, HPV video and an ATTO SEIV just fine in my 7100/80.

 

What firmware are you running on your SEIV?

The older ones might not work well with CPU upgrades.

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I'm using 2.0rc2. Mind telling me if the SiliconExpress control panel detects your card in case you're using the same firmware version? For me it only does when 1.65 is in use, though with 1.65 disk throughput goes from 15MB/s to 5-6MB/s thus defeats the purpose of the card. It doesn't work with the G3 either.

 

What crescendo/fortissimo G3 do you have exactly?

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I'm not sure it will help you.

I installed several NewerTech cards in 7100s when they were released.
The problem with this card is that the ribbon is soldered to the card and much stiffer (and shorter) than the Sonneth card.
After several manipulations, they all ended up breaking and impossible to use an HPV card. I think that's why we do not find much.

 

NewerTech card with soldered ribbon :

IMG_5167.thumb.JPG.c6ccdd02cd78d9a1369f7c4ec1bb029c.JPG

 

Sonnet card with the ribbon attached to a connector :

IMG_5175.thumb.JPG.a218b271d0806d693b2c2bd6bb031041.JPG


I have a 7100 with a Sonnet G3 / 300 and HPV card and another with a NewerTech G3 / 240 with a Nubus video card (because some lines are cut on the ribbon, I cannot use HPV card).


The NewerTech dashboard allows you to set only the Level 2 Cache:

Newer.JPG.5982037cfb75aa3049953afc4ff5bc8e.JPG

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Compatibility with SCSI cards was an early problem with the Nubus G3 upgrades.    Newertech solved it before Sonnet did.   Is it possible that you have an older version of the upgrade?   I seem to remember that compatibility with the JackHammer was fixed first, but I might have that backwards.

 

Does your 7100 boot okay without the SEIV.   I've found that pretty much all 7100s need their CPU/Heat Sink grease cleaned off and replaced othewise they overheat shortly after booting up.

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On 12/3/2018 at 6:35 PM, trag said:

Compatibility with SCSI cards was an early problem with the Nubus G3 upgrades.    Newertech solved it before Sonnet did.   Is it possible that you have an older version of the upgrade?   I seem to remember that compatibility with the JackHammer was fixed first, but I might have that backwards.

 

Does your 7100 boot okay without the SEIV.   I've found that pretty much all 7100s need their CPU/Heat Sink grease cleaned off and replaced othewise they overheat shortly after booting up.

Took some time to respond, sorry.

 

I believe my card is an older version, yes. It has a purple heatsink, though I'm not sure that means anything. It was bought around 1999-2000 (dropped the 7100 board in a centris 650 case I had about a year before that) and has always been used in the 7100 since then. It was the cheapest model that came with 1MB backside cache at the time.

 

And I'd say it's pretty much stable, no freezes as long as I don't access a file system via the SEIV at the same time the G3 is running. My current drive is connected in fast-wide mode from an external scsi enclosure and it works like a charm with sonnet processor upgrade disabled. It really doesn't look like an indirect stability issue to me. Still, fair enough, this machine wouldn't suffer from a mainboard checkup, dust out and thermal grease replacement; it's been a while.

 

Edited by rafthe030

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The purple heatsink is pretty much a brand indicator for Sonnet. Don't recall seeing one with any other color. Date on the PCB a/o pics of your card would be helpful.

 

I got a box lot of NewerTech G3 cards quite a while back. Couple of low profile boards and several taller boards with the passthru cable, some with slot kits and vidcards. More than half the cables tested good, but some didn't.

 

Sonnet's optional, longer active component cable seems a much more robust implementation than the short, passive NewerTech implementation.

 

Haven't tested any with the SCSI2 boards as yet

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Sonnet offered the same card (with a G3 or G4) for the 6100/7100/8100 with HPV or without.

919261596_IMG_5174copie.thumb.JPG.60cc00ff6dfb9bdc9aabe2930027b0a5.JPG
The caddy and the optional cable were only used for the 7100/8100.

crescendo_nubus_manual.pdf


NewerTech offered 2 cards, one for the 6100 (smaller) with a connector for HPV :s-l1600.thumb.jpg.762c4854de257a57e1889e5dc4174d11.jpg

s-l1600-1.thumb.jpg.1affebe110d40a0c0032417c574c4373.jpg

(picture come from one for sale on eBay)

I don't know if this one can be used in a 7100...

 

And one other for the 7100/8100 with a soldered cable and caddy (see picture in previous post).

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Interesting, I've never seen one with a black heatsink, all my Sonnet accelerators have the purple type. Of these boards, I only have the lower profile heatsink with passthru implemented.What's the date on your card 30th week of 98?

 

Never heard they made/released the G4 version for the NuBus PDS either. My G3/400/1M box from the day says "Crescendo/NuBus G3 or G4"plain as day but I've never seen nor heard of a G4 in the wild. Now my 81/110 feels left out. I imagine that if it had been released we'd have heard of it and the TAM gang would have been bidding them into the Ionosphere.

 

Something tells me a procswap may be in my Radius Clone's future. It'll probably need to have active cooling, a power hungry TAM hostile config. 

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2 hours ago, Trash80toHP_Mini said:

Never heard they made/released the G4 version for the NuBus PDS either.

It seems Sonnet has made Crescendo G4/360 card for PPC Nubus Mac (6100/7100/8100), see the pdf in my post, and here:

https://web.archive.org/web/20000303214808/http://www.sonnettech.com:80/news/pr120399_nubus.html

https://everymac.com/upgrade_cards/sonnettech/crescendo_g3_nubus/crescendo_g4_360_nubus.html

But I have never seen one.

Edited by gpbonneau

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@gpbonneau the lower-profile newertech card in the picture is the kind of newertech upgrade that could be a candidate for use in my 7100 (with the sonnet pds ribbon cable). I expect the clock multiplier is the only thing that prevents it from working in a 7100/8100 but, needless to say, mixing the sonnet ribbon cable with such a card to connect the HPV is way too scary to try; especially when I have no next to no spare parts (a single 7100/80 mainboard and a 2MB HPV). Possibly that may change if I find some theory to back up what would happen?

 

@Trash80toHP_Mini On macsales.com around 2010 there were a dozen of these crescendo G4 upgrades still available at or less $200 IIRC. So sonnet actually shipped them. That said, what was a great shame at the time, they were completely incompatible with connectix virtual pc. I don't know how popular they have been, given they hadn't sold out in 2010. Fortissimo G3 400/500mhz upgrades are truly the real deal for 6/7/8100 machines.

 

I'm seriously considering to look for a sonnet 400/500mhz G3 upgrade instead of a newertech one. No need for a new card connector, and even in the case it still wouldn't work with the atto SEIV, that would make for a nice upgrade (260mhz to 400 or 500). (good luck to myself finding one)

Edited by rafthe030

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8 minutes ago, rafthe030 said:

@gpbonneau the lower-profile newertech card in the picture is the kind of newertech upgrade that could be a candidate for use in my 7100 (with the sonnet pds ribbon cable). I expect the clock multiplier is the only thing that prevents it from working in a 7100/8100 but, needless to say, mixing the sonnet ribbon cable with such a card to connect the HPV is way too scary to try; especially when I have no next to no spare parts (a single 7100/80 mainboard and a 2MB HPV). Possibly that may change if I find some theory to back up what would happen?

That's an interesting notion. I'll have to take a look at that possibility when I get a chance. HiRes Pics of the active components would be the first step. I always figured that PCB took care of driving the longer cable, but it may have something to do with keeping timings in sync?

8 minutes ago, rafthe030 said:

@Trash80toHP_Mini On macsales.com around 2010 there were a dozen of these crescendo G4 upgrades still available at or less $200 IIRC. So sonnet actually shipped them.

I think MacSales bought up all of Sonnet's clearance stock and raised the prices. I got a lot of really good stuff direct from Sonnet in that liquidation. I got G4 Crescendos, but none were for NuBus or L2. They were for ZIF and ZIF adapter cards. I'd like to think I would have been on a G4 for either of the earlier architectures like white on rice. :-/

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