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Apple Desktops Discussion of Apple's desktop machines including Mac Pro, iMac, Power Mac, and mini

iMac G4 shocking me... literally


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CyberGhost

 
Member Since: Apr 23, 2014
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Hello everyone, New member here, and first time posting

Hoping to get explanation/advice regarding my iMac G4 1.25GHz 20"

The iMac works great, I use it solely as an iTunes machine with various iPods and as a jukebox (it's my only machine that holds my entire music collection). However, recently, the iMac has literally been shocking me. Areas that shock while the iMac is running/plugged in are primarily the metal neck, and also the ground/external shields of Firewire and USB shields.

I've opened this Mac various times in the past, last time I opened it was to replace the internal stick of RAM that seemed to be causing frequent kernal panics (and after replacing it, it hasnt panicked at all). This was about 3 weeks ago. It's been around that long since I've noticed the shocks. I thought it might have something to do with not plugging the power cord in to a grounded socket, but even after grounding it, I still get the jolts if I brush these metal parts.

So, I'm wondering whats going on here. Like I said, it's working great but I think this is a potentially serious issue. These shocks are actually pretty strong jolts. I took an LED bulb to the metal part of a firewire cable and it actually burnt....

Input is appreciated here, thanks!

Edit: Additional machine information
iMac G4 20" 1.25GHz with USB2.0
1.5GB RAM
400GB hard drive
Mac OS 10.5.8
Internal WiFi/Airport Extreme card
Internal bluetooth

Last edited by CyberGhost; 04-23-2014 at 05:59 AM. Reason: added specs
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Lifeisabeach

 
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This should be a no-brainer, but..... STOP USING IT NOW! Unless you really want to get electrocuted. Obviously there's either a serious problem with the power supply in the iMac; a flaw in the power cable; or an issue with your power source. You are best off having the iMac being checked out by a professional in a shop, and perhaps your power source (electrical outlets/system) by an electrician.
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chscag

 
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Quote:
I've opened this Mac various times in the past, last time I opened it was to replace the internal stick of RAM that seemed to be causing frequent kernal panics (and after replacing it, it hasnt panicked at all). This was about 3 weeks ago. It's been around that long since I've noticed the shocks.
In addition to what member "lifeisabeach" stated, open up the iMac again and make sure everything is correctly in place - such as shields, screws, and grounding wires. It sounds like your iMac now is ungrounded instead of being properly grounded to the AC power supply.
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vansmith

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
This should be a no-brainer, but..... STOP USING IT NOW!
I quoted this for the purposes of restating the really important point here: this has moved beyond being a simple computer problem and has become an electrical problem which needs to be fixed by a professional.

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dtravis7

 
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I agree with LB and Van. Stop using it till you can find what is going on. You could have left off a ground wire when you put it back together or left out a screw that grounds something.

Are you sure your AC Outlet is properly grounded and have you checked the Power cord to the iMac? If you have a Meter check the ground wire for continuity.
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harryb2448

 
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No response. I wonder if the Ghost has become a ghost? Trash it.

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CyberGhost

 
Member Since: Apr 23, 2014
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Nope I'm here. Ever since the first time I noticed the issue, I dont leave the iMac plugged in beyond testing it. I'll admit I'd been naive in thinking it was no big deal and just overlooking the issue as something actually dangerous. Initially, I honestly thought it was just my imagination.

Anyway I'll be taking the time again this weekend to pull it apart and visually check for obvious issues. Maybe as I was last assembling it, I clamped down on one of the power lines internally? I know I almost caught the airport antenna like that before.

I don't find it necessary to take it to a shop because it seems that at worst I'll end up just replacing the power supply and internal power cables/socket.

I wont be giving up on this machine Further insight is appreciated, pointing out that I understand the potential risks and dangers of working with such volitile hardware (which is why I wont be plugging this thing in until I actually do something about it)
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