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  1. #1

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Post for Fans of REALLY Old Macs!
    So a couple weeks ago I see an ad in my local Craig's list for an OLD Macintosh computer + additional items. I contact the seller & they wanted $100 bucks for everything. I offered $25...and the seller said I could have it if they didn't get a better offer by the end of the week (about 3-4 days later).

    Well I was the best offer. I was assured that the computer worked fine before I drove the 30-35 miles to pick it up. When I got there...guess what...the computer didn't work. Of course I was told that it worked 6 months ago when it was last turned on. Their guess was it might be the power supply (BIG ticket item)!

    But the seller felt bad about it (my driving the whole way)...and said what the heck...I was a nice guy & could have everything for free!

    Ooh...by the way...did I mention that the computer is a 1990 vintage Macintosh IIfx!!! For those folks that don't know, the Macintosh IIfx was "Wicked Fast" (for it's time of course)...but more importantly...it was the most expensive computer Apple ever sold! Even more than the LISA! It sold for a starting price of $10,000 dollars!!! Whoa!

    In any case, I was very concerned about the computer not working, but since the seller seemed sincere that it worked 6 months before...so I had one possible long shot idea what might be the problem...I was thinking that maybe the PRAM battery was dead. Sometimes a dead PRAM battery will cause startup issues.

    Long story shory...I get home, pop in a new PRAM battery...and wah-la...BONG...the computer boots up just fine!

    VERY interestingly...the computer has TWO PRAM batteries...both were from 1991! Can you believe that 1 of the 2 PRAM batteries from 1991 still works...a 19 year-old PRAM battery!

    Here are some photos of the computer & all of the stuff I got for FREE (everything on the table came with)! Take special note of the date on the purple PRAM battery of "3/91".

    Enjoy,

    - Nick







    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  2. #2

    Kevriano's Avatar
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    What an awesome spot of "luck". No idea what you're going to do with it, but as a collectors piece it's very interesting.
    Lets hope the seller never sees this post eh!
    Try my custom Mac Forums Search Engine: Mac Forums Google Search

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  3. #3


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevriano View Post
    Lets hope the seller never sees this post eh!
    Hahaha, now that would be good!!


    Seriously though at $10k new, that must've been some machine with very few made. Congrats on your find!

  4. #4

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevriano View Post
    What an awesome spot of "luck". No idea what you're going to do with it, but as a collectors piece it's very interesting.
    Lets hope the seller never sees this post eh!
    Yes very lucky. As far as the seller...hey it was only $25 bucks...I was more than happy to pay them the $25 bucks!

    And of course if the PRAM battery wasn't the problem...then I'ld have a fancy doorstop!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  5. #5

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by martyp View Post
    Seriously though at $10k new, that must've been some machine with very few made. Congrats on your find!
    I'm sure the production number was low...and I did try to find out how many were made...but couldn't find any info!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  6. #6

    hughvane's Avatar
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    Great photos, great good fortune story! It looks in splendid condition. If I'm not mistaken, that 'old' battery is SAFT brand. So lithium battery technology was up and running back then.

    40 MHz the IIfx ran at (my first ever Mac was a IIsi that ran @ 25). For (nearly) complete info on the machine, refer to Mactracker; and I'll bet the Apple Museum would be interested.

    I think I may have some software at home that will still run on that. Will check when I get back next w/end and PM you.

    BTW - there are threads on other Mac forums that are dedicated to older Macs, so you may care to go searching.
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    Please post your Mac (or other) specs and MacOS version in your post, your profile or your signature. It helps us to help you better.

    I'm leaving now to go and find myself. If I should return before I get back, please ask me to wait.

  7. #7

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hughvane View Post
    If I'm not mistaken, that 'old' battery is SAFT brand. So lithium battery technology was up and running back then.

    BTW - there are threads on other Mac forums that are dedicated to older Macs, so you may care to go searching.
    Hugh,

    Thanks for the thoughts! I did a quick check...and it looks like one of the first Macs to use the lithium battery was the Macintosh SE...vintage 1987.

    I'll have to check the other Mac Sites to see if I can come up with a production # for the Mac IIfx.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  8. #8

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Nick, I have a IIFX. It's so large I keep it under my bed!

    A friend bought it used in 1993/4 for maybe $300 from Weird Stuff Warehouse in Sunnyvale Calif. I was with him. He used it for a couple of years and gave it to me.

    It's pretty mint but yours looks even better. And yes it has 2 PRAM batteries. I had to use the batteries in other Macs but want to get it working again as it's part of my old Mac collection.

    Really good deal you got there for free!! I will post a pic later.

    Edit: Wow 2 Cartridge load CDROM drives, SCSI even! I see a SCSI hard drive and a floppy. You got a lot of stuff and all those large SCSI cables! Any terminators? Scratch that as I found them in the pic!

    I see an external Zoom modem. 14.4 or 28.8?

  9. #9

    cwa107's Avatar
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    What amazes me is that those batteries didn't leak.

    Am I looking at that right - does it have both a 68040 some kind of co-processor? Or is it a 68030 and a 68881/68882?

    EDIT: I see that it used a 40MHz 68030 and a 68882.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  10. #10

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    I have never seen a SAFT PRAM battery leak, at least not in any of the Macs I have worked with.

    CPU: 40 MHz 68030
    FPU: 40 MHz 68882 FPU
    bus: 40 MHz - fastest until Quadra 840av

    Mac IIfx

    And Nick, I think you are correct about SE being first to use that PRAM battery like that.

  11. #11

    cwa107's Avatar
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    OK, I am speaking from my knowledge of Amigas.

    My last one that had a battery similar to that was a 1993-vintage Amiga 4000/040. When I finally sold the motherboard, the battery was just starting to leak. That was in 2001 or so. I know, that was a common thing with that particular style.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  12. #12

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Agree with dtravis7. My LC, 1990 vintage, purchased brand new with an RBG monitor, from memory was a little over $5000.00 Australian Dollars, still runs the original battery. It came withb a HDD, 160MB, and was maxed out with 8MB RAM and really flew and the joy of saving things to the hard drive which would NEVER EVER fill up!

    Came with System 7.0 floppies, about eight white floppies, and the upgrade to 7.0.1 was another twelve floppies.

  13. #13

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
    OK, I am speaking from my knowledge of Amigas.

    My last one that had a battery similar to that was a 1993-vintage Amiga 4000/040. When I finally sold the motherboard, the battery was just starting to leak. That was in 2001 or so. I know, that was a common thing with that particular style.
    Not a problem at all. Maybe some have leaked, just I have been lucky I guess. I hope my wording did not seem like I was talking down to you because I would never do that.

    The IIFX was Noticeably faster at the time than any other Mac I had used. When I first got mine I thought it was a 68040 because it just flew but it's an 030 with separate Math Co-Processor.

    The only thing I HATED about the IIFX was the non standard 64-Pin RAM in Matched Pairs I believe! Hard to find and very expensive!

    I am wrong on the dual channel part but the rest is correct.

  14. #14

    cwa107's Avatar
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    I dunno why, but I love vintage computers. I found an old IIsi in a storage closet at work a few years back. Loaded it up with 64MB of RAM that I found on eBay for a good price and was playing around with it for quite awhile. Then, the basement in my old house flooded and it was a total loss. Darn you Hurricane Ivan!
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  15. #15

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
    I dunno why, but I love vintage computers. I found an old IIsi in a storage closet at work a few years back. Loaded it up with 64MB of RAM that I found on eBay for a good price and was playing around with it for quite awhile. Then, the basement in my old house flooded and it was a total loss. Darn you Hurricane Ivan!
    That is a shame. I owned a IISi. Was my first Color Mac. Only thing I hated was the video shared system ram and the whole thing dragged. Later I got a PDS to NuBus converter board and a nice NuBus video card. That made a large difference in the machines responsiveness!

    I am with you, I love messing with old computers! It's a hobby of mine.

    The Amiga was so ahead of it's time with many Co Processors and custom chips! Nothing was like the Amiga.

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