Hey people, you’re here! Yes, you’ve arrived at the first entry of this column. Take a minute, sit back and relax. We’re all your friends here. This column is dedicated to all of you who, like the writer, are having a difficult time keeping up with the incredible acceleration that technology is making and wants to be able to talk to somebody… anybody that knows what’s what about the dinosaur Macs. How many of you are reading this article right now and aren’t running a Power Mac? C’mon now, don’t be shy. How many of you are willing to admit that your Mac is from the nostalgic era of the 68k series?
Raise both hands right now and shout, “Amen!” Stand tall, stand proud! My mission, since I have chosen to accept it, is to help those of you that have older Macs (you know, the ones whose warranties have just expired) and have questions with no readily accessible answers. No, I don’t know it all, but if I don’t know the answer, I’ll do my best to search out for the resources that can. America, what a country!
I have come across a very common problem with a certain genre of Macs, and if you’re experiencing this problem, let me offer a few suggestions. I actually stumbled onto this by accident but it works. Stay with me.
Customers with Mac LCs, LCIIs, IIIs, Quadra 605s (any of the pizza-box shaped CPUs), have been coming to me with a problem with their monitors. The little green light comes on but there is no picture. No video whatsoever. They call me on the phone and say that their monitors are broken. It happens all the time. I have them try this little test:
1. Turn everything on. The monitor, CPU, printer, the outside lights (for Tom Bodett) – everything.
2. Wait about 2 minutes and then turn off just the CPU and then turn it right back on (total time: less than one second).
3. After about 10 – 15 seconds the video should pop on (you should hear some of the exclamations) and the smiley Mac shows up and the rest is history.
Everything’s in Black-and-White but, hey, it’s working, right?
Okay, so tell me, what’s happening? Glad you asked. The internal battery, Apple’s part number is 742-0011, controls the video out as well as hold the date, time and all that PRAM stuff. See, the batteries work for about 3 years and in some cases don’t quite hold out that long. I’ve seen a few Quadra 605s that are just 2 years old experiencing this problem. Now I’m starting to see the problem in more updated Quadras (like the 630 series). The battery is different. Apple’s part number is 922-0750. Talk to your local Apple service guy and ask him for a battery. If he’s been doing this kind of work for long, he’ll tell you that he sees this problem all the time.
Speaking of your local Apple service guy…I’d recommend that he do the work on the LC type battery replacements. Please believe me, I trust you, really I do, but I have too many horror stories of people not being properly grounded and frying their logic boards when they wanted to save a few bucks in labor costs.
This is enough for now. I just wanted to whet your appetite. Are you hungry for more? Of course you are. Hang on ‘cuz it just keeps getting better from here on. See ya!
Ed Tobey (firstname.lastname@example.org)