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#51 2015-01-08 20:24:43

Eudimorphodon
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Registered: 2014-09-02
Posts: 525

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

jt wrote:

4MB of onboard VRAM would have been a first for a Mac MoBo frame buffer, no? Even the 8100 needed the 2/4 HPV Card to get that resolution/color depth. Did any clones ship with four-on-the-floor?

No. All the (7/8)(3/5/6)00 series machines with built-in video could take 4MB onboard. (It was in VRAM SIMMs rather than soldered down and 2MB was "standard" but it's onboard. You pretty much needed 4MB if you wanted to use the non-mirror mode for the TV out on the machines so equipped.)

I might have missed if this was addressed before, but... *most* of the references about the PEx say it used PC66 SDRAM, but I *swear* I saw someone say that their working PEx was actually using 3.3v EDO as used in the late model "Tanzania" (4400) machines and clones. Since apparently Haplain's works... what's in there, for real? (I apologize if you've already said and I missed it.)


Flap Different.

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#52 2015-01-08 21:20:10

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Hello All - thanks to a Twitter user for getting in contact with me and reminding me about the PEX!

Quick answer to some of the questions - I was the winner of Hawaii Cruzers PEX.

I eventually got it to boot OS 8 - 9 by borrowing a ROM SIMM from Bruce Damer's PEX which was missing from the machine (which he shipped from the USA to the UK - it's back with him now).  This also involved doing some direct connection via the serial port with anothermac in OpenFirmware mode on the PEX to send it correct ROM patches and commands before it would boot.

The rom dumps were accurate from the onboard removable chips (went through a long process with Trag to verify the PLCC chips and the ROM simm - should all be on the thread PEX Part III).  I extracted an audio startup sound (or trag did) I used a programmer to dump these as well as read them with various utilities once booted.  I think I also at one point flashed these with a later version of open firmware from someone elses PEX.

As far as I can tell what these did in conjunction with having the ROM SIMM was they booted into the prototype/beta OpenFirmware then looked for the ROM SIMM which booted the PEX properly.  This resulted in 2 bootup chimes on startup.  I put forward a thoery that as the ROM SIMM was 3MB and the onboard removeable chips were 1MB that the onboard chips only contained Open Firmware and the SIMM contained the classic mac os toolbox.  This might be backed up as by the time we get to NewWorld macs the OpenFirmware is the only ROM on the board - the toolbox is ROM in RAM loaded by OS8/9 (like the first iMac/B&W G3)

The last thing I was trying to do was:

* Get the MacOS X beta booting as this contained drivers for the PEX (believe it or not) and wouldn't need the ROM SIMM to do this
* Have TRAG produce a copy of a ROM SIMM - this stalled due to time but he has the parts I sent him - I think he just needs the time smile Anyone seen trag?

Pretty sure the full write-up is on the thread already posted (http://www.applefritter.com/node/23597) but hope the above info helps.  Funnily I'd forgotten all about the threads after this date - so thanks for compiling a definitive list of all PEX posts. Currently don't have much time to spend on this (i.e. none) for a few months (as I've got a <1 year old, work and a masters to complete) but please keep the thread going and happy to contribute when possible.

James.

Last edited by iMic (2015-01-09 07:10:11)

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#53 2015-01-08 22:57:13

jt
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From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Hiya, James, welcome to ThinkClassic. Congratulations on the baby, that's an awesome (literally and figuratively) life experience/rite of passage. It's great to have you here with most of the gang all back in one thread, trag has joined in as well. While I'm thinking of it, do you have any idea about who Hawaii Cruiser bought his/your PEx from and how many slots does it have anyway? We've been wondering.

MJ313 wrote:

Hap, that's awesome, thanks for posting all of that. So all PEx LB's were EVTs? Some of these boards fit into appropriate cases though, so does that mean the PEx itself reached Design phase using these EVT boards?

9700 was clearly slated to be housed in the stock 9600 case, look how much mileage the B&W-G3/PortlyMac/MidTower with just a few color/bezel mods, not to mention that horrid 840AV-8500/9500 SpindlyPlast POS. I'd say that the physical fit of the first run of boards was a shoe-in for the single-model-so-far new case design/form factor of the 9600.

< WAG mode >

Apple probably lost a lot of 8600 sales due to the decision to skip the MidTower form factor for one generation. The lower cost BeigeBoxen were likely aimed at fixing that MidMarket MidTower Mistake and the SlotSlayer killed off first iteration fail at what became the Pro/Consumer product differentiation that came of age with the release of the G5/CheeseGrater.

It seems as if there's not all that much more technical differentiation between 9600/9700 as the little there was between 9500/9600? Hell, mine fits just fine into a 9500 Chassis!  I'm tempted to build a clear plexi replacement for the missing "case" with a hole for the 9600 PSU to hang out the side of the 9500 board's bare chassis.
____________________________________________________

@bbraun & trag: should I post links to your ROM spelunking thread? Better one of you do it, better it be you, bbraun, trag's got his hands full. I'd really like to hear commentary about that project to go with the linkage. wink

@ CHC: Probably not, read through the 17 pages of muck and see if you find your answers. I'd love to have access to the goings on in the WAR Room and the PMs I lobbed at Ti at the time. Its probably better I don't. roll




*****Please search and add more if it's out there gang! MJ has been doing Yeoman Duty bringing more to the table and contacting all the usual suspects. GREAT WORK! Mad props to MJ! cool

Last edited by jt (2015-01-08 23:46:27)

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#54 2015-01-09 02:35:55

MJ313
Member
Registered: 2014-09-23
Posts: 498

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Eudimorphodon wrote:

I might have missed if this was addressed before, but... *most* of the references about the PEx say it used PC66 SDRAM, but I *swear* I saw someone say that their working PEx was actually using 3.3v EDO as used in the late model "Tanzania" (4400) machines and clones.

FWIW:

Dr. Bob at AF stated this:
"Power express greatly predates PC 133. He needs either Fast Paged Mode or EDO ram. We had one in the lab when I worked for apple that we used for disk testing. It really was greatly inferior tot he beige G3, which is why i never shipped."

Then this:

"it need 3.3V EDO, the 9600 uses 5V. It's keyed differently to keep you from inserting the wrong type. NB probably does'nt refer to anything relevant.

PC133, PC100, PC66 WILL NOT WORK."

Subsequent posts agree.
powersurge9600 states this at the beginning of a long post about it:
"You [Hawaii Cruser] noted on the forum that by the RAM slots is printed "NB DRAM 3.3 VOLTS". I believe this means Non-Buffered (unbuffered) DRAM 3.3 Volts, which some PCs used before PC66 SDRAM was adopted."

http://www.applefritter.com/node/6148?f … er_page=50

Last edited by MJ313 (2015-01-09 02:47:48)

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#55 2015-01-09 04:29:14

Eudimorphodon
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Registered: 2014-09-02
Posts: 525

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Yay! I THOUGHT SO. Someone needs to correct all those incorrect web pages.

I almost have to wonder if part of the reason so many of the PEx motherboards in the wild won't boot is people cramming the wrong memory in. Does the keying that prevents a 5v FPM/EDO from fitting also prevent PC66 from being inserted, or could sticking PC66 in them explain the rampant chimes-o-death?

In any case, if the PEx takes FPM/EDO there really isn't much distance between them and the 8600/9600 at all; it's pretty much one of them with the "Heathrow" IDE/Ethernet chip also used in the Beige G3 glommed on. No wonder it didn't make anyone happy.


Flap Different.

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#56 2015-01-09 06:06:41

jt
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From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

That's what I was thinking earlier, 9500->9600->9700 seem to have been little bumps along the way. I've got a wicked G4 card earmarked for the PEx, but if it isn't compatible, I wonder if its gobs of L1/L2/L3 Cache and 800MHz clock in the 9500 will be faster than a G3 in PEx?

Lots of content production pros would have been very happy to get a 9600 rehash with a better Proc and that 6th available slot that on-board video would have freed up  .  .  .  not to mention mobo support for high capacity, inexpensive EIDE/ATA/whatever drives from the era in addition to Ultra for SCSI Screamers. wink



edit:  hmm what was I thinking? I'll bet Apple didn't implement SCSI in the Ultra era any better than bog standard Narrow/S-l-o-w-e-r SCSI on the Compacts and Macintosh II Family. roll

Last edited by jt (2015-01-09 14:21:47)

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#57 2015-01-09 12:03:29

MJ313
Member
Registered: 2014-09-23
Posts: 498

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Eudimorphodon wrote:

Since apparently Haplain's works... what's in there, for real?

need... the... infoz.... smile Hey Hap - what have you got?
big_smile

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#58 2015-01-09 16:14:15

ClassicHasClass
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From: Electron Alley
Registered: 2014-05-26
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Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Where is "hey hap, what's the haps?"

I expect more better from this thread.

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#59 2015-01-09 16:43:55

jt
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From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Piker, I be 'spectin' mo' betta' if youse's gonna go critical! tongue

Eudi wrote:

In any case, if the PEx takes FPM/EDO

I've got one EDO DIMM in my PEx, swimmingly doing Startup Chimes and then it does its dead fish routine, no Death Chimes. I'm guessing it must be FPM, as you said, it's not interchangeable with the 9500/9600 because the slightly shifted keying keeps 5V DIMMs and 3.3V DIMMs out of each others' slots.

Is there a difference between FPM/EDO and another sort keyed the same which could explain the Death Chimes should it turn out that PC66 isn't the culprit?

From what I can see in the pics he took of his board in the case, (HINT!!!! wink ) Hap's Board appears to be from the same batch as mine  He also has identical(?) Statrup Chimes or they sound the same at any rate. I'm guessing his ROM DIMM would be compatible with my Corner Kickstarter PLCCs.

Questions:

Does it make sense that all POST routines would have been implemented in the PLCCs? Would there need to be a pointer in there to hit the ROM DIMM for the Drivers and setup for OS level boot in that scenario?

Does it make sense that the 2bit(+?) combination of different Startup/Death Chimes exhibited would partially indicate hardware revision compatibility?  That might explain the (two?) KILL_ME!!!! variations. That'd be a whole lot clearer than checking the stickers for revision level when mismatched with hardware implementation level and POST came to a screeching (and yelling?) stop. smile

Last edited by jt (2015-01-09 16:52:48)

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#60 2015-01-09 17:31:19

iMic
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From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 889
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Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

jimjamyaha wrote:

Hello All - thanks to a Twitter user for getting in contact with me and reminding me about the PEX!

~


Hi James,

I accidentally opened your post for editing earlier, so it says I edited it - but it hasn't been changed. Just thought I should let you know.

Welcome to the forums. smile



jt wrote:

Does it make sense that the 2bit(+?) combination of different Startup/Death Chimes exhibited would partially indicate hardware revision compatibility?  That might explain the (two?) KILL_ME!!!! variations.

Now I'm curious. Are there any other chimes in there we haven't heard before? Just curious. I've always found the oddball boot and death chimes of the PEx interesting for some reason.


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Macintosh Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#61 2015-01-09 18:07:27

jt
Member
From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

iMic wrote:

I accidentally opened your post for editing earlier, so it says I edited it - but it hasn't been changed. Just thought I should let you know.

ROTFLMAO! lol Some jackass somewhere tried to tear me a new one for hitting the edit button instead of quote a few times. A couple of times I managed to mangle his posts when making that mistake. I apologized both(?) times for having done so. He couldn't even recall the circumstances correctly whilst offering a litany of lame@$$ excuses for  having done something or other. He falsely accused me of doing quotes that way all the time as a course of habit. roll

Last edited by jt (2015-01-09 18:37:59)

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#62 2015-01-09 18:18:57

MJ313
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Registered: 2014-09-23
Posts: 498

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

“To err is human; to forgive, divine.”

smile

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#63 2015-01-09 18:25:02

jt
Member
From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Maybe so .  .  .  but an asshole by any other name stays the same. tongue

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#64 2015-01-09 18:34:06

MJ313
Member
Registered: 2014-09-23
Posts: 498

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

jt wrote:

Maybe so .  .  .  but an asshole by any other name stays the same. tongue

lol

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#65 2015-01-09 19:43:45

haplain
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From: SF Bay
Registered: 2014-05-23
Posts: 25
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Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Hey guys, sorry for the delay. I've got a lot going on right now with some life changes, all are good, on top of that. I don't know why I've stopped receiving the email notifications from this site about people responding. Either way, I'm here and happy to help as much as I can.

What exactly would you like to know about the beast and it's components? Last I tried, it would freeze when I'd go try to check the specs in system profiler. Assuming my memory serves me correct, and that is the case, is there any way to pull the specs without using that method?

Last edited by haplain (2015-01-09 19:44:25)

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#66 2015-01-09 19:54:34

Eudimorphodon
Member
Registered: 2014-09-02
Posts: 525

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

haplain wrote:

What exactly would you like to know about the beast and it's components?

I think what would work best is a physical eyeballing of the DIMMs installed in it, with part numbers of the ICs if it's not obvious from labeling on the DIMMs what flavor they are. (EDO, FPM, SDRAM, etc.) If you *really* wanted to be bold, try gently seating a PC66/100/133 DIMM into one of the sockets (power pulled, of course) and see if it will fit or if the keying prevents it.


Flap Different.

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#67 2015-01-10 01:42:51

jt
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From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

ICs say:

9716___P__USA
MT4LC4M4E8DJ
_____________6

DIMM info:

MICRON TECHNOLOGY
MT16LD464AG-6X
9717AA3KN.014
EDO


DigiChip.com says:

Part number____MT16LD464AG-6X
Category______Memory => DRAM => EDO/FPM DRAM => Modules => 32 MB => EDO FPM Module
Title__________EDO FPM Module
Description____168-Pin DRAM Dimms, Nonbuffered, (x64), , Status: End of Life (EOL)
Company______Micron Semiconductor Products, Inc.

Download MT16LD464AG-6X datasheet


.  .  .  and yup, it may not fit it there just right, but the keying looks identical to the PC133 in my DA and the DIMM goes in far enough for the ejection/retention ears on the slots in jtPEx to snap shut  .  .  .

.  .  .  go figure! roll

.  .  .  bare nekkid, HiRes piccies of hapPEx requested. Let's see if these puppies are from the same run! wink

Last edited by jt (2015-01-10 01:45:06)

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#68 2015-01-10 13:50:10

MJ313
Member
Registered: 2014-09-23
Posts: 498

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

jimjamyaha wrote:

Have TRAG produce a copy of a ROM SIMM...

I'm just curious but what exactly is involved in producing a copy of a ROM SIMM? I guess Trag would have all of the info on that, but if he's not available to answer, can anyone else explain to me, in brief, what that means?

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#69 2015-01-10 17:56:23

jt
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From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,407

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

The board layout/development illustrations went missing in The Great Pixel Robbery, but even just the .TXT in dougg3's 2 layer ROM SIMM thread over yonder would be a great primer for an exploration of trag's PEx ROM DIMM development project. He's spent a lot of years trying to get 4 (or more?) layer SIMM/DIMM layouts condensed to the 2 layer format.

I can't wait to see what new retro-developments start now that the short run 4 layer PCB process is hitting the market. Wake up and smell the VLSI! cool

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#70 2015-01-10 22:34:09

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

Hi,

Just a heads-up from the PEXII thread about the ROMS - it looked like I updated the onboard chips from OF 2.0a9 to OF 2.3 (by buying spare PLCCS and cloning Bruce Damer's chips) to get my PEX to boot with the ROM SIMM.

http://www.applefritter.com/node/23597#comment-58219

If people would like to have a play around with the ROM files I've made available the following:

* PEX ROM SIMM Dump
* Original OF 2.0a9 Flash Chips Dump
* Digibarn OF 2.3 Flash Chips Dump
* OF 2.3 Device Tree listing (from Digibarn's Flash chips)

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#71 2015-01-10 22:36:06

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

BTW - is 68kMLA down - seems like an old thread not working specifically one where there was a load of ROM and sounds discussions (linked originally from AppleFritter post http://www.applefritter.com/node/23597#comment-58574) - luckily at somepoint I think I saved a complete webpages the threads - will dig up at somepoint:
http://68kmla.net/forums/viewtopic.php? … =25#p94436

Oh hang on - the ROM dumps, chips, and sounds are alive and well (and have already been documented on the initial post list here)  - it's the booting and grey screen thread which has been transposed to the 'new' 68kmla
https://68kmla.org/forums/index.php?/to … ay-screen/

Phew - thought we'd lost a chunk of info!

James.

Last edited by jimjamyaha (2015-01-10 23:12:11)

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#72 2015-01-10 22:37:48

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

MJ313 wrote:
jimjamyaha wrote:

Have TRAG produce a copy of a ROM SIMM...

I'm just curious but what exactly is involved in producing a copy of a ROM SIMM? I guess Trag would have all of the info on that, but if he's not available to answer, can anyone else explain to me, in brief, what that means?


He had some spare PCBS when he made some custom ROMS for other older macs.  We indeitifed the chips needed (he could programme and solder) - which I sent him a couple of years ago.

Essentialy you would need:

PCB
Chips
Dumped ROM

then

burn the dumped rom file with the correct interkeave and data format onto the chips, then solder them onto the board in the correct order, then test.

James.

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#73 2015-01-10 22:41:36

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

jt wrote:

Piker, I be 'spectin' mo' betta' if youse's gonna go critical! tongue

Eudi wrote:

In any case, if the PEx takes FPM/EDO

I've got one EDO DIMM in my PEx, swimmingly doing Startup Chimes and then it does its dead fish routine, no Death Chimes. I'm guessing it must be FPM, as you said, it's not interchangeable with the 9500/9600 because the slightly shifted keying keeps 5V DIMMs and 3.3V DIMMs out of each others' slots.

Is there a difference between FPM/EDO and another sort keyed the same which could explain the Death Chimes should it turn out that PC66 isn't the culprit?

From what I can see in the pics he took of his board in the case, (HINT!!!! wink ) Hap's Board appears to be from the same batch as mine  He also has identical(?) Statrup Chimes or they sound the same at any rate. I'm guessing his ROM DIMM would be compatible with my Corner Kickstarter PLCCs.

Questions:

Does it make sense that all POST routines would have been implemented in the PLCCs? Would there need to be a pointer in there to hit the ROM DIMM for the Drivers and setup for OS level boot in that scenario?

Does it make sense that the 2bit(+?) combination of different Startup/Death Chimes exhibited would partially indicate hardware revision compatibility?  That might explain the (two?) KILL_ME!!!! variations. That'd be a whole lot clearer than checking the stickers for revision level when mismatched with hardware implementation level and POST came to a screeching (and yelling?) stop. smile

My theory is that the PLCC chips contain 1MB of Open Firmware with the hardware diagnostics and initial boot sound. The ROM SIMM contains the classic Mac OS toolbox which also produces a boot chime when this is handed over to from the OF. 

Does it boot into OF with the RAM issues? One option would be to setup a serial terminal link to another mac via the localtalk port and listen for any actvity in case the RAM is an Classic Mac OS ROM issue rather than hardware specifically?

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#74 2015-01-10 22:46:37

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

jt wrote:

Hiya, James, welcome to ThinkClassic. Congratulations on the baby, that's an awesome (literally and figuratively) life experience/rite of passage. It's great to have you here with most of the gang all back in one thread, trag has joined in as well. While I'm thinking of it, do you have any idea about who Hawaii Cruiser bought his/your PEx from and how many slots does it have anyway? We've been wondering.


Thanks very much - great this is getting rebooted, so to speak.  Not sure who Hawaii Cruiser bought his from - although something sounds familiar about getting an enginnerring sample from someone at motorla? (but tht could be Digibarn/Bruce Damer's one).  From memory (currently it's locked in a cupboard) it had the same as a 9600 - i.e. 6 PCI slots. Fits perfectly into a 9600 case which I took a 9600 mobo out of and rehomed this in).



MJ313 wrote:

Hap, that's awesome, thanks for posting all of that. So all PEx LB's were EVTs? Some of these boards fit into appropriate cases though, so does that mean the PEx itself reached Design phase using these EVT boards?
9700 was clearly slated to be housed in the stock 9600 case, look how much mileage the B&W-G3/PortlyMac/MidTower with just a few color/bezel mods, not to mention that horrid 840AV-8500/9500 SpindlyPlast POS. I'd say that the physical fit of the first run of boards was a shoe-in for the single-model-so-far new case design/form factor of the 9600.

Think there was a rumor that the 9700 was literally weeks away from production run.


@bbraun & trag: should I post links to your ROM spelunking thread? Better one of you do it, better it be you, bbraun, trag's got his hands full. I'd really like to hear commentary about that project to go with the linkage. wink

What's this about ROM thread - please share smile

Last edited by jimjamyaha (2015-01-10 22:48:06)

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#75 2015-01-10 22:51:51

jimjamyaha
Member
Registered: 2015-01-08
Posts: 23

Re: PExProjRedux_II: the inevitable 2kTeens franchise reboot . .

MJ313 wrote:

I think there's another one in the wild. This is mkc9700's PEx page from long ago.

http://www.isellmacs.com/macsystems.htm

This guy was one of the ones mentioned on the DigiBarn page about PEXs
http://www.digibarn.com/collections/sys … erexpress/

"A comment from Mark Crutchfield (May 2006):
I saw several postings to the effect that you have the only working PowerExpress prototype in existence. Well, I hate to bust your bubble, but I have had one for several years that I obtained in some surplus equipment that came from Motorola. It is missing the G3 275MHZ card, but runs fine with a 604 processor card. It boots from either SCSI bus, the IDE bus or from CD. It is quite stable and I actually used it in my business for a while."

I sent him two e-mails in 2009 and got this response:

e-Mail One:

Yes, that's me. I still have it.

Mark

    Dear Mark Crutchfield, Could I confirm that you are the same Mark Crutchfield that e-mailed the Digibarn Computer Museum about owning a rare prototype mac called the PowerExpress (PM 9700)? If you are I was wondering if you still have this computer - and if you could reply to this e-mail. If not, apologies for clogging up your inbox. Thanks very much, James Little.



e-Mail Two

I just got my 9700 out after it was sitting for several years, hooked up a monitor and a keyboard and pressed the power button. I heard the startup chime and the drive spin up, then nothing. No video, no drive access, I thought it was dead. Then about 3 minutes later the light on the monitor turned green and the drive started accessing. It booted up system 8.6 and everything was fine. After I replaced the PRAM battery, it boots faster, but still slow compared to other Macs. It still takes at least a minute for the video to come on, but it is very stable as before.

I am going through all the old stuff I still have and will be documenting it, probably on my old website isellmacs.com which I haven't used in recent years. I will pass along whatever pictures and info I gather.

Mark



    Hi Mark, Thanks for getting in touch. I've got a prototype board of the 9700, which I think is feature-complete apart from a ROM SIMM. I've borrowed some parts from the Digibarn in order to try and get mine booting. I was thinking of putting together a webpage exploring the PM 9700, and was wondering (if/when you have some time) if you could answer some questions about yours, which I could send you via e-mail.  This might also involve running a program on it called TattleTech to gather some deep-level system info from Mac OS 7, 8 or 9.  There's an ongoing thread on Applefritter for the past few years which has been trying to get this board to boot: http://www.applefritter.com/node/23597. I don't know if you've heard of the retromaccast (http://retromaccast.ning.com/), but they've expressed an interested in doing a feature on them when I've got some more results from trying to boot mine. Of course, if you don't have the time - no problem.  If you would ever consider selling it count me in! James. ----- Original Message ---- From: Mark Crutchfield <mark@isellmacs.com> To: James Little <jkal@talk21.com> Sent: Friday, 27 February, 2009 3:19:29 AM Subject: Re: Mac prototype... Yes, that's me. I still have it. Mark > Dear Mark Crutchfield, Could I confirm that you are the same Mark Crutchfield that e-mailed the Digibarn Computer Museum about owning a rare prototype mac called the PowerExpress (PM 9700)? If you are I was wondering if you still have this computer - and if you could reply to this e-mail. If not, apologies for clogging up your inbox. Thanks very much, James Little.

Last edited by jimjamyaha (2015-01-10 22:57:58)

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