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haplain's never-ending quest

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Prototype PowerBook 17" She's real sexy. I've got another piece coming for it that will "complete the set". I'll let you imaginations run wild with that. More to come soon...


It took me 5 hours to disassemble, clean, tidy and fix her up. It's got a 44pin IDE hd so the only one I have right now is from a TAM (2GB) I'm going to find a larger one and got 10.4 to boot onto it just fine. I'll post some more photos of it soon. Typically I'd do a 44pin to CF card adapter but with something this crazy I want to keep it "stock". The person I got it from said they are working on digging up the original HD. It also has a special OS on it too I'd like to have.


The power supply is one of a kind too. It's a model Apple never shipped and is the predecessor to the MagSafe adapter. Without the power supply this thing would never work, unless I kept another 17" PowerBook just to charge the battery. It looks like a smaller version of the 20/23/30 Aluminum Cinema Display power brick connector, about half the size.

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I'm really interested in seeing that power brick! Is the end still the same as a regular AlBook?


This also proves Apple was doing clear protos until just a few years ago. Hell, they might still do them. Imagine a clear iPhone. :lol:


Complete the set, complete the set... Hmm. I'm thinking either another clear proto 12" or 15" AlBook or a clear iBook G4.


I wonder, can it can boot OS 9 outside of Classic? I bet that hard drive might be running a pre-pre-release version of 10.3 or a patched version of 10.2. Maybe even a beta build of 10.2?


Also, how thick is it? It looks like a beast!


Another great find!


PS: Could you post a closer pic of that sticker where they check off what the System Config is? I'm curious to know who they were testing out for the different parts.

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my 20" apple cinema display has a kinda similar connector too.

but it also has more pins then yours.





I think yours was a development laptop power plug they were thinking of using… but decided to ride out current tech… until magsafe came out in 2006

lol i am the stupid ass that ran out and bought a CORE DUO 1.8ghz Macbook Pro… when they first came out.. MY god was that thing a total piece of crap. the worst 2399.99 i ever spent!! i think it was the worst buy i have ever did in my entire life.


well no.. i take that back even though at less money the 1.8ghz G5 20" iMac @1799.99… yeah that was 2nd worst purchase i have ever done in my life. Even though it was less money it was a bigger piece of crap.

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Well as much as I trust wikipedia I'll have to see when I get home.


She does have every normal port for a computer of that era i.e. DVI, usb, FireWire 400/800, ethernet, modem.


As uniserver eluded to I'm having backlight issues at the moment. I've got prototype replacement parts for the computer, I'm hoping it's just the inverter board. I should have another prototype one on Thursday and a stock replacement one on Friday to test. I'll keep everyone posted, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was a G5 laptop. If it is then pigs can fly }:) I will be very excited if she is a G5

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that would explain the new power plug, need more power for that beastly G5… do we see any battery in the thing?

if so does it look like any battery pack we have ever seen? -- i know that was the deal with the g5, battery life was bad bad bad.


Holy s**t 8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o8-o


you might have the only G5 power book that exhists…


I know when you originally sent me the email when you first picked it up.

You were like, Oh -ah- ya, I picked some proto mac laptop thing…


then i saw the pictures and said to my self oh wait a minute here….

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Probably has a 1.6ghz G5 that was used in an iMac…

or maybe they were experimenting with down clocking the G5 to see if they could make it work with some kind of tricky power management. like goes down to 1 - 1.2ghz when idle, and then could kick up to 1.8 ghz when high cpu utilization?

If i was an engineer working on it at the time… and was given a watt hungry pos like the G5 to shoe horn into a lappy, that is about all i would have came up with.




"It'd be this really thick, heavy notebook, and it would be loud as all get-out," said Kevin Krewell, editor in chief of the Microprocessor Report. "Those would not be design choices that Apple would want to pursue."

sounds like they caught a sight of this prototype :)


The main thing holding back a G5 PowerBook is the chip itself. IBM technical documents show that when running at 2.5GHz and 1.3 volts, the chip consumes a maximum of 100 watts of power, a fair amount of juice for a notebook. However, its power consumption can be reduced by lowering its clock speed or reducing its clock speed along with its voltage, IBM documentation shows.


i see the dilemma.


Thus, to fit the G5 into a typical PowerBook-size chassis, Apple would have to throttle down the G5, causing the chip to run more slowly than current G4 mobile chips


yeah the G4 you could clock that monkey up there. didn't they top out at like 1.67 in the G4 Powerbook?

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Looking at the sticker, I can just barely make out 1.1GHz and 1.4GHz on the CPU line. It looks to read as follows:


1.1GHz, DD2.0 (P1) 1.4GHz, DD2.0, 45W (P2).


For me its really blurry, so the only that can confirm would be hap.


yeah the G4 you could clock that monkey up there. didn't they top out at like 1.67 in the G4 Powerbook?


Yep, the Rev D and E models. 1.67GHz came in the 15" and 17" models. The 12" only went to 1.5GHz. But remember, the G4 was 32-bit. The jump to the 64-bit G5 would have been huge. Too bad the 1st Gen Intel Macs were only 32-bit.

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I'll let you know as soon as I can get more photos. It's a clock-able CPU via dip switches. After having read what you all have said, I can almost with 100% certainty say she's a G5. I don't want to jinks it but based on what the engineer said about power consumption, the power supply configuration, and the fact I know this model was never released all point to it being a G5. I'm almost 100% certain the engineer said it was 64 bit too, pointing to a G5 chip. If that's the case, well then I know what's the newest top dog in my collection.

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But the kicker for IBM and its customers is that the PowerPC 970FX is a one-size-fits-all architecture that accommodates servers as well as notebooks.


"The portable-space specs that are out there talk about 15 to 30 watts for maximum power. We want to be inside that envelope," Rohrer said. "The low-frequency operating conditions in the idle state?nap?are in the 1- to 2-watt range."


That will mean that any G5 notebooks will likely be clocked somewhat lower than the current G5 desktops.


In one hypothetical example of a low-power state, Rohrer said a PowerPC 970FX in the 1/64 "deep nap" state could run at 30MHz, which would equate to about 1.9GHz in full-speed mode. Apple's shipping dual-processor G5 desktops range in speed from 1.8GHz to 2.5GHz.


"That's the whole intention of this, to make it usable in low-end servers ... down into portables," Rohrer said. "To do that, you can't start with high voltage and high frequency; you can't hit 50 watts. You've got to start with a lower voltage and lower frequency and [then] adjust the voltage and drop the frequency."


yeah i can see, i bet apple was just waiting to pop one of IBM's new moble CPU's in there… IBm couldn't make it happen in time… Intel was ready to go, Dual core too! so By By ibm.

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Some thoughts regarding the possibility of it being a PowerBook G5...


1. It must not be a standard PowerBook G4 motherboard. The G5 used a completely different chip set, thus if it even smells like a G4 board, the idea of it having a G5 is right out.

2. The power curve seems a little low, but might be in the realm of possibility. The 17" MacBook Pros came with a 60W power supply, so if the whole point of the G5 not being in a notebook is that it was power hungry, having "only" a 45W PSU seems low. (For comparison, my 12" PowerBook G4 came with a 45W power supply. The slowest released G5 was 1.6 GHz, and the 17" iMac at that speed had a whopping 180W power supply. (It had to drive a desktop HD and higher-power graphics chip, but that's still quite a difference. *BUT* power usage is an exponential curve. It is entirely possible that Apple+IBM developed a lower-power chipset, and that by running the processor as slow as the apparent 1.1 GHz might have given just enough to allow it in a mobile form-factor. (That said, I would have to assume this was a very early "feasibility study" prototype, and that it likely had a very short battery life, with the thought that they would improve it by production-time.)

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