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JustG

I'm Now A Member of the Cube Club

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Picked up a G4 Cube locally today.  The price was too good to pass up.  No cracks in the plastic but there are a decent amount of scratches.  I haven't decided if I'm going to try polishing or just leave it as is.

 

Hard drive is loud (I'm going to start looking for a SSD solution) and the optical drive doesn't inject or eject without some help.  I'll have to do some research to see if the drive can be lubricated or if I should just start looking for a replacement out of a G3 iMac.

 

The one thing I'll need to start looking out for is a set of speakers.  The ones I got are busted up pretty badly.  I'd be surprised if they work at all, cloth is totally torn on one of the two.  I'm tempted to buy a cheap set of speakers from a G4 iMac and splice in the USB amp from the Cube.

 

Now to watch for a matching graphite Studio or Cinema Display to complete the set.

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I'd be interested in knowing what you end up using for an SSD in the Cube.  I've been thinking about doing the same with my own Cube, but I'm not sure what combination of IDE-SATA adapter and drive carrier will fit.

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I just took a pair of G4 iMac speakers and removed the cones and then used them to replace the ones in the G4 cube set.  They are pretty easy to get out but you have to unscrew the plate at the back to be able to pull the cord out to unsolder / solder the new set in.  IMHO this is better than splicing.  I used a angled pair of needle nose pliers to unscrew the plate with the three divet holes in it, which has a special tool that is unobtanium.

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@TheDoctor I'll report back once I've had a chance to test a few things.  There are some inexpensive adapters and plates available.  Fitment will be the big concern.  It'll be a little while however, I'm budgeting repairs and upgrades for this machine and functional speakers are more important right now.

 

@pcamen Excellent idea.  I'm looking at eBay now for a set of G4 iMac speakers.

 

After doing some insomnia research it appears that the optical drive inject/eject issue is a common problem on the Cubes and iMacs.  So far none of the solutions I've found are long-term.  Adding a bit of masking tape to the rollers is reported to help but I'd rather not have something that will fall apart down the road and make things worse.

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I looked into OWC’s “Legacy” IDE SSD but apparently it won’t fit in the cube because of the way the airport card sits. Not sure if it would fit if you didn’t use the airport. I would also like to know what other options are available. 

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On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2019 at 7:47 PM, JustG said:

Picked up a G4 Cube locally today.  The price was too good to pass up.  No cracks in the plastic but there are a decent amount of scratches.  I haven't decided if I'm going to try polishing or just leave it as is.

 

Hard drive is loud (I'm going to start looking for a SSD solution) and the optical drive doesn't inject or eject without some help.  I'll have to do some research to see if the drive can be lubricated or if I should just start looking for a replacement out of a G3 iMac.

Welcome to the Cube owners club!  For an SSD I used an inexpensive IDE to SATA bridge board and a 120GB SSD.  As long as I'm not shaking the Cube like a snow globe (and really, why would anyone ever do that?) it seems perfectly fine.  There's enough tension in the IDE cable and the adapter / drive combo are so light I can't imagine it putting any real stress on anything, plus it's hard to beat a new SSD that works in the Cube with almost no effort apart from removing the old drive, and costs under $30:

Bridge board - $9.99 - https://www.microcenter.com/product/317195/kingwin-sata-to-ide-bridge-board

120GB SSD - $15.99 - https://www.microcenter.com/product/485877/inland-professional-120gb-ssd-3d-tlc-nand-sata-iii-6gb-s-25-internal-solid-state-drive-(120g)

 

I'd leave the internal drive as-is and just use an external firewire drive.  They can be had cheaply enough (usually under $30) and any replacement internal drive you find now is going to have similarly aged rollers. The other option of installing an aftermarket drive that doesn't have this problem is more difficult because only certain drives worked and you need a special mounting bracket to fit anything other than the standard drive in the case. which I haven't seen for sale in the past several years.

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@EvilCapitalist Thank you for the excellent information, I hadn't looked at the prices of lower capacity SSDs in a while, they have gotten very reasonably priced.

 

Is it possible to split the case on the speaker audio amplifier?  It looks like it snaps together but before I go breaking anything, has anyone taken one apart before?  I might replace the speakers and wiring at that end instead of the speakers depending on how possible it is to split that box open.

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Well, I replaced the speakers by rewiring through the USB amp.  That was a royal pain and if I did it again would go the @pcamen route and work from the speakers.  Got everything buttoned up, plugged them in to find that the amp doesn't work.  I suppose I have a nice prop to sit on a shelf now but really wanted a functional set of speakers grrr!

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My Cube originally didn't come with speakers and it took a loooooooooonnnng time for them to pop up for sale in both functional condition and at a non-highway robbery price.  Best bet would be to set up an eBay alert for their part number, M7963.  I still see them come up for sale every once and again.  For a good while there was a person selling NOS replacement speakers (just the speakers, not the USB amp) and I'm kicking myself that I didn't pick up a pair or two.  You can also pick up a cheap USB sound card but then you won't have matching speakers and you won't get the startup chime.  The one I've linked below I know for a fact works under both OS 9 and OS X, it sort of matches the Mac color scheme, and it's $9.99.

https://www.microcenter.com/product/444621/vantec-usb-stereo-audio-adapter

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