I must say I've really enjoyed owning this Cube, finding out about it, seeing all the upgrades and funky things other people have done with theirs, and finding this friendly Cube Owners Club website. Now I find it sitting in the corner as I play with my new iMac instead, so it's time to let someone else enjoy the Cube.
It's a stock Cube (turkey flavour, ho ho ho! Did someone mention Christmas?), in the condition I bought it... original Apple installed 20GB hard drive, 384MB RAM, Mac OS 9.2, Apple Pro keyboard and mouse, Power Adaptor, manuals, HK USB speakers, and a stack of cool software I installed including Photoshop, Illustrator, some classic games, and MacMame with arcade game ROMs (works beautifully!)
I shall miss the old fruit for sure, but nowadays I only used it for playing OS 9 games anyway when I should be doing something more useful (no, I really should )
It will be going up for sale on eBay tonight (Sunday 9th December), UK only. Of course, if anyone makes me an offer I can't refuse then I *could* end the auction early! Check eBay for the Cube, my eBay handle is heatemyfather.
I have a silver PowerMac / Cube keyboard which I have used for spares, but it still has the plastic case and all the (black) keys, as well as the USB ports and keyboard USB lead, though the PCB is history. If anyone reading this needs the odd key to replace a damaged or lost one then give me a shout! Hmm, yeah, like anyone ever reads my Cube Owner blogs
I finally saved up enough money and caught myself a bit of a bargain - an ex-display 17" Intel iMac. It's a pretty good replacement for my ailing eMac, excellent for running emulators and doing videos etc!
So now my Cube is no longer the main computer (it makes little sense when I have a much newer and faster machine), it is now predominantly an OS9 machine again, useful for all those devices and software that isn't supported in OS X or on Intel Macs. If anything the Cube serves a more useful purpose now than when I had my eMac up here (it is now downstairs awaiting sale).
I currently have an HP 6300c scanner and a floppy disk drive which are OS 9 only, and while floppy disks may seem ancient it's still very useful sometimes to be able to read them.
Cube is going great, eMac is still working (just slight discolouration of about an inch at the left hand side of the screen). Tried using iDVD to create a project on the Cube but it became just too slow to work with so transfered the project to the much faster eMac; managed to create a pretty good DVD in the end, menu's and all, burned using my external firewire DVD writer.
Wish I could afford a 1.66 Intel Mini to replace the Cube, and a decent KVM switch to save having to unplug and move around stuff all the time.
Well the eMac finally popped, possibly due to my upgrades. The machine itself still works, only the display hardware is a little screwed. After much discussion and words with the local Apple reseller head technician I've concluded that it's not worth sending for repair, and most likely not repairable by me, apparently it's the demagnetising circuit that's at fault, leaving the screen susceptible to discolouration (the flat tube is apparently hyper-sensitive to magnetic fields). So I have two choices - use the parts to make a headless eMac (no CRT), or use the eMac with another monitor via the video out port - I'm currently doing the latter because I found the system has a good DVD drive (better than the Cube's) so is good for working with DVD and video, and also due to the much faster clock speed of the CPU it runs emulators a whole lot better, particularly dosbox which I'm currently using to enjoy Dune II
I don't know what I will do with the thing eventually, maybe one day I will get a MacMini to replace it (for the fast CPU mainly) and sell the eMac really cheap or for parts.
I bought an old Yamaha CD-RW drive in a firewire enclosure, a very tidy unit with internal PSU and fan, then waited for the right opportunity and bought a Pioneer DVR-108 DVD-RW drive to swap into it; after a vist to Accelerate Your Mac for guidance on Patchburn etc it's all up and running, even works with iDVD! Great! To get the iDVD thing working I had to download an extra thing and place the two files in my Home directory, then to burn I have to hold Control while I click on Burn... from the File menu - this brings up a list of target drives to use (only one is listed - my dvr-108) and away it goes!
About Patchburn - the author seems to have neglected to update Patchburn 3 (the current version for Panther) so I had to set my system date to 2005 in order to make the installer work - the files it writes to the hard drive don't care what date it is, only the installer, so I just set the year back to 2006 afterwards and all is hunky-dory
I have attached the two archives required to get an external DVD writer working to this post.
HPfurz.sit.hqx ( 544bytes ) Number of downloads: 1010
PatchBurn3.1.3en_1.zip ( 1.09mb ) Number of downloads: 983
The 120GB hard drive I bought is now in and going strong, I switched the 80GB to an external firewire/USB case I bought, I'm using it to keep large backups and disk images. After my eMac blew a gasket (possibly due to my upgrades, I'm not sure) I took an image of the hard drive using CarbonCopyCloner, then reformatted the HD with a clean install of Panther and took an image of that, then did all the updates and took an image of that too, so I have three complete HD images, two of which should be good for cloning from and the other has all the crap and files I had on the eMac! It was well worth keeping the crap, I've used it several times to grab something I was missing from my clean install - I just mount the image from the external drive and copy stuff across, magic!
I swiped one of the 512MB RAM sticks from the eMac too and shoved it in the Cube. I think I get the grey reboot screen from it occasionally though as it doesn't match the two Kingstons I have in there too, but it's quite rare and worth the extra RAM.
Btw I've found that a cloned eMac disk works just fine in the Cube, so this is how I got OSX installed - the eMac OEM DVD didn't want to be installed on the Cube, stupid thing!
By some odd fluke I won a 120GB HD in an online auction for £38, looking forward to receiving it and *hopefully* finding it's what they say it is and that it's in full working order. Will fit it to the Cube at some point, but probably not until I can acquire non-OEM versions of OSX and OS9.
Not strictly Cube related, but I performed a couple of upgrades to my eMac - fitted a Zalman inline fan speed controller, and changed a tiny resistor array on the main board which sets the CPU speed - was 1GHz, is now 1.33GHz! So now I have a near-silent Cube and a very very quiet eMac... bliss!
I'll be monitoring performance, stability, and temperature (by the heat sensitivity of my hand at the fan outlet around the back) on the eMac carefully until I'm satisfied it's not going to break.
I couldn't find the original post here about the Photoshop torture test, the one with the rotation and resizing tests, but I've done them again and got some curious results...
If memory serves correctly, the original OS9 install with Photoshop 7 gave pretty abismal times, the resize test(2) taking a whopping 37 minutes! Here's some more results:
OSX 10.3.9, Photoshop CS
G4 Cube 450Mhz
Interesting results! The Cube has fresh installs of OSX and Photoshop CS, can this really account for the difference? I find it difficult to believe that really; where have those clock cycles gone to?! I really must get some proper 3D benchmarking done!
Edit: Found out the difference in test results is most likely due to a difference in L2 Cache - eMac CPU has 256k, Cube has 1MB
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