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Kai Robinson

Powerbook 180c chime, then death chime

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Hello! I'm a veteran of 68k mac land, having had a IIci and LC475 in the past. I picked up a 180c on ebay and in the process of testing it, initially I found that it just went to a white screen, no chime. I pulled it apart and found several bent pins on the internal connectors, particularly the top case connector and an expansion ram board. I straightened the pins, plugged it all back in and... Well, i videoed the results :

 

https://youtu.be/5FGlqCzD6wE

 

Idea's? It also looks like here's a to-220 package regulator on the board that's been badly resoldered... 

 

This is on mains only, 15w ac adapter, no battery damage or battery present. 

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Welcome Kai!

 

The "sandwich" of the motherboard, CPU daughterboard and memory modules in PowerBook 1x0 can be very prone to bad connections and can often cause errors in a pristine unit, and especially in one that has visible damage.  Another common failure point is a fuse near the DC jack that can be jumpered with a wire; but if that's gone it won't start up at all.  Also if you're using an Apple 7.5V power adapter, the caps on these can go resulting in a "weak" incomplete startup such as this.

 

I'd pull the HD, third-party RAM, clean the contacts with electronic solvent spray, and lastly reseat the CPU paying attention to the shims on the casing that it's securely aligned.  Does the HD spin up, and if it does does the 180c attempt to start up off it?  Check your power brick; ensure it outputs the right voltage, under load.

 

JB

Edited by Byrd

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Thanks for the detailed reply! There is no hard disk in the machine, nor is there the cable or cradle either. Is there a capacitor replacement guide for these machines? I noticed that the AC adapter is only 15w, and not a 24w, as is specified for the 180c, is that enough to make a difference like this? 

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...and it's just been rendered moot - the IDC cable that links the top to the bottom has basically come away - the internals look like a gibbon has previously opened it up - there's nothing securing the cable to the pin end :(

Any chance i can get a replacement of just that board from other powerbook 1xx series, or is it a specific part to 180c's?

 

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Ah crap, Kai :)

 

Sounds like some dodgy DIY work carried out on that poor 180c.  No wonder you didn't have a display!  Can you post a pic of the cable and missing board?  It should be a universal part to all colour 1x0 PowerBooks.

 

Going back, is your power adapter the 7.5A/1A rated unit - that's for Powerbook 100s (and I think Mac Portable), you need the higher rated amperage units to successfully power up later more power hungry 1x0 models.

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I've got a 2A model PSU - I bagged a 2nd PB180C from Japan on buyee - cost a bit more than i want to admit by the time shipping was factored in, but it came with all the original floppies, manuals, box, even a video output cable. However, still no PSU with that one, either. Now, the Sharp screen panel was melted (looks like someone spilled acetone on it), but i swapped out the panel from my buggered 180C from previously (whole display assy swapped, inverter and all). 

This one plugs in, turns on, chimes, white screen for about a second, then it turns off completely. Press power button again, chime, white screen, turns off...

This one has a battery in it at least - seems to not turn on when there's a battery in it, only if it's not in - i'm guessing PRAM battery is totally discharged and needs to be replaced or just charged?

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Incidentally - in case anyone hadn't got it written down - the PB180C uses a Sharp LQ9D01A display - these are *still* available as they were also used for industrial use - have seen a fair few on ebay and Alibaba/aliexpress for cheap. 

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3A PSU was all that was needed! The hard disk in the Japanese model is hosed...clicks, whirrs but is pretty dead otherwise. The dead machine i think i have almost everything i need to resurrect it, barring a new screen, so we'll see what i can find, but i may end up using it as a parts machine, sadly :(

 

 

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On 8/26/2019 at 11:17 AM, Kai Robinson said:

3A PSU was all that was needed! The hard disk in the Japanese model is hosed...clicks, whirrs but is pretty dead otherwise. The dead machine i think i have almost everything i need to resurrect it, barring a new screen, so we'll see what i can find, but i may end up using it as a parts machine, sadly :(

 

 

If you're the "third time's a charm" type, I have a 180C that's in parts. The screen is in good physical condition, but the plastics are shot (all the brass standoffs for the screws holding it together are separated from the panels). I do have the proper AC adapter (US version, if that matters). I don't think it's got a HDD in it currently. If you're willing to cover the shipping to wherever you are, it's yours. PM me if interested.

 

-Chad

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Ok - SCSI2SD v5.1 Powerbook edition installed first time worked a charm - booted 7.6.1 off the SD card, ran SimCity 2000 and Stuffit without issue but there was an issue with the audio - fixed it by removing the modem in the machine. However, since then, it's been unreliable and now basically fails to even recognise the SCSI2SD. At first, it tried to boot, got to the welcome to macintosh screen, the macOS splash & 'starting up', then it rebooted, chimed again showed the happy mac for a second or two, then went to the '?' floppy, and subsequent reboots netted the same again. Reseated the SCSI2SD on the cable, removed and re-inserted the SD card, still nothing. I had stuck some thin neoprene foam to the underside and to the SCSI connector ribbon to stop it shorting out on metal, this is all still in place. Anyone have any ideas?

 

I have a spare motherboard, CPU card etc - but the one in the macbook as it is cannot be removed from the bottom plastics - the torx screw just spins around and doesn't do anything, but it's stuck fast - i've tried levering it out the case but no luck :(

 

I seem to have awful luck with these machines.

 

On a side note - Just how brittle are these plastics?!

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