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  1. #1

    Member Since
    Nov 20, 2007
    Broken Optical Drive - PB G4
    I have a Powerbook G4 that had a ton of issues when I got it, last thing on the list to sort is the optical drive. It's a combo drive, CDRW, DVDROM. It doesn't recognise a disk at all. What can I do to try and fix it?

    When I go to - About this Mac/System profiler or whichever tool it is, it does come up whereas a previously installed Airport decvice does not. This leads me to believe that I might be able to resuscitate it.

    Any help on this would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2

    Kevriano's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 02, 2006
    Crawley, England
    20" Intel iMac 2.4 Ghz/3G Ram/320HD, Snow Leopard. PBook G4, 1.5Ghz/1.5 Ram/250 HD, Leopard 10.5.6.
    Sadly not a lot. It will still show because it's still present whether it works or not because it's not disconnected from the board in any way.
    Almost certainly the failure is down to the actual laser failing.
    The only thing you could try would be to blow air into the slot (with one of those air cans used in photography), to try and clear any dust from the lens and then try a disc, but on a machine this old it's done well to last to be fair.
    Try my custom Mac Forums Search Engine: Mac Forums Google Search

    Please use the reputation system if you consider any help given useful (it's the little ✓/✘ on the left <---)

  3. #3

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    iMac, i7 4GHz, 32GB memory, 1TB PCI-e storgae StOS X.13.3
    Guess the question is if you think the PB is worth $99 for a replacement optical drive such as this:-

    MCE 8X DVD±R/RW + DL "SuperDrive" Upgrade for PowerBook G4

    If you go that way, Google removal and installation. Also you might like to Google for a used drive.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  4. #4

    Member Since
    Oct 29, 2009
    The combo drive in the PB G4 is a Panasonic CW-8123-C. Also used in a few high end Dell laptops.

    If you search for the drive's model number rather than for a Powerbook G4 drive, you'll be able to get it a lot cheaper. Resellers tend to sell it as an Apple drive and triple the price.

    Here's one that ended for $20 on Ebay:
    Panasonic Apple 24X CD-RW/DVD IDE Slot Drive CW-8123-C | eBay

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