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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:22 PM   #1
zackkmac
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PowerBook G4 Hi-Res Display

Hi all. I've been shopping around for a PB G4 15" just to tinker with and found a few candidates. Some need new LCD screens.

I was wondering if it seems possible to install the hi-res (1440x900) panel on a PB that originally did not have it. Judging by the pictures of the cables they seem to have the same connectors and all. Couldn't find much on google except one website where someone said it works. I would just like to see what your thoughts are, or if there is an even higher resolution panel that I could install.

Thanks.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:33 PM   #2
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Yes and no. It is electrically possible, as in some screens exist where the cable connectors (LVDS?) are the same; however, since the PowerBook used a 3:2 display at 15.2" and MacBook Pros (and really the industry standard) uses 16:10 at 15.4", you can't squeeze the screen panel itself into the lid of the PowerBook. Since the hinges are identical to early MBPs, you could cannibalize the entire screen assembly from that, but the sizes won't be quite right and it won't latch for obvious reasons. If I recall correctly, a user here put a 1920x1200 display on a PowerBook using a MBP bezel assembly, you can probably find it with a bit of Googling.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:37 PM   #3
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Thank you for the response, I have seen that before. However, I'm not really looking to fit a MBP display in there. I am just interested in the hi-res PowerBook display. It is more affordable (and justifiable for a very inexpensive laptop) and looks like it's a direct swap.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:43 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by zackkmac View Post
Thank you for the response, I have seen that before. However, I'm not really looking to fit a MBP display in there. I am just interested in the hi-res PowerBook display. It is more affordable (and justifiable for a very inexpensive laptop) and looks like it's a direct swap.
I see, well the PowerBook HR display is 1440x960 not 900, which is why I thought you were looking for the more readily available 16:10 displays. It might be a bit more work for the graphics card, but I don't see any reason it wouldn't work.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:45 PM   #5
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That's what I'm thinking. If the cables are the same it should no doubt get picture, and I would think the graphics can handle it. I'll probably give it a shot, since if it doesn't work I can just sell the hi-res panel and purchase the standard one.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 04:27 AM   #6
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I'll try and find the thread - but some guy from here restored a 12" PB and used a high-res display from a ThinkPad (perhaps?) - so I don't think you'll have any problems.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 06:01 AM   #7
jpcoelho
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here is the thread:

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthre...=powerbook+ssd


and the link to the ifixit guide to that mod... i'm sure it will work for the 15 inch version as well!

http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/PowerBoo...upgrade/3117/1

good luck!
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 11:38 AM   #8
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Saw that thread (as well as the iFIxit guide) not too long ago. Very interesting read!

I'd like to find out what the highest res I could stick in this PB would be, but I have no idea how people manage to guess at these LCD's and pick the right ones! So for me I think the safest (and probably cheapest) bet would be to buy the Apple-made PB 15.2" hi-res screen. Even though it's today's standard res on the 15" MBP it should be a nice upgrade!

Unless, of course, someone can point me to a higher-res 15.2" LCD.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 12:00 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by zackkmac View Post
Saw that thread (as well as the iFIxit guide) not too long ago. Very interesting read!

I'd like to find out what the highest res I could stick in this PB would be, but I have no idea how people manage to guess at these LCD's and pick the right ones! So for me I think the safest (and probably cheapest) bet would be to buy the Apple-made PB 15.2" hi-res screen. Even though it's today's standard res on the 15" MBP it should be a nice upgrade!

Unless, of course, someone can point me to a higher-res 15.2" LCD.
I believe that's the only 3:2 screen within reason. Even if you could find a specialty screen that fits in that aspect ratio, it'd probably be hundreds of dollars or incompatible.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 12:25 PM   #10
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True. When I did an eBay search for 15.2" LCD, most of the ones that came up were removed from PowerBooks anyway. So I think I will stick with the 1440x900 upgrade. This laptop will be for my dad and regarding the MBP screen upgrade, even though it works on a PB he would not like the screen latch not catching or the display assembly being larger than the rest of the laptop.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 12:50 PM   #11
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On another note: make sure the powerbook 1.67GHz you buy has ***Both*** ram slots working! Known issue with bottom one being defective.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 01:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zackkmac View Post
Saw that thread (as well as the iFIxit guide) not too long ago. Very interesting read!

I'd like to find out what the highest res I could stick in this PB would be, but I have no idea how people manage to guess at these LCD's and pick the right ones!
I would assume the maximum resolution the powerbook can handle will correspond to the maximum resolution it can output to an external display... if it can output this resolution for an additional display, it most certainly be able to do it to an attached screen... in this case, 2560x1600.

Speaking from experience... I own a 17 inch iMac, the first intel generation which had frequent screen failure due to defective screen assembly. I purchased an adapter that enables common 17 inch laptop screens to be used as a replacement for the Apple original one, and that permits a resolution increase to 1920x1200, without any kind of problem.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 01:59 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by jpcoelho View Post
Speaking from experience... I own a 17 inch iMac, the first intel generation which had frequent screen failure due to defective screen assembly. I purchased an adapter that enables common 17 inch laptop screens to be used as a replacement for the Apple original one, and that permits a resolution increase to 1920x1200, without any kind of problem.
Wow! I noticed the 51-page thread about the MBP display on the PB that there were talks of people doing that mod to an iMac, but I got to page 11 or so when I stopped reading. Do you have any threads or pics of this? I don't suppose that would be possible on an iMac G4 though would it? It currently is the only 17" iMac I have.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 02:16 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by zackkmac View Post
Wow! I noticed the 51-page thread about the MBP display on the PB that there were talks of people doing that mod to an iMac, but I got to page 11 or so when I stopped reading. Do you have any threads or pics of this? I don't suppose that would be possible on an iMac G4 though would it? It currently is the only 17" iMac I have.
I believe the adapter is built specifically for the 17 inch iMac Intel, but you can always ask... maybe they can build it to order, but I would assume it would cost more than the commercially available adapter... here you go!
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 02:29 PM   #15
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Interesting...So did your new display panel fit in place without any modifications?
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 03:17 PM   #16
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Interesting...So did your new display panel fit in place without any modifications?
I am actually still waiting for my adapter to arrive... but in the video, it certainly appears to fit perfectly!
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 05:47 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by zackkmac View Post
Interesting...So did your new display panel fit in place without any modifications?
Where are you seeing brand new 15" HR Powerbook screens? All I see are used ones...

Also, as I recall, there were two different video cards in the 15" AL PB's, one with 64vram and the other with 128vram. I think the 1.5ghz came as BTO with 128. Not sure, but I would imagine this would affect your screen capabilities.

The 12" Powerbook final revisions had 64vram.

But where do you see new 15" LCDs for the HR PB anyway?
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 07:24 PM   #18
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Oops, didn't mean to make it sound as if I was viewing brand new panels. I am just looking at display assemblies (including the outer casing) on eBay that were removed from other PowerBooks.

The PB I just ordered is a 1.67GHz but has 64MB VRAM.
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 09:13 AM   #19
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Where are you seeing brand new 15" HR Powerbook screens? All I see are used ones...

Also, as I recall, there were two different video cards in the 15" AL PB's, one with 64vram and the other with 128vram. I think the 1.5ghz came as BTO with 128. Not sure, but I would imagine this would affect your screen capabilities.

The 12" Powerbook final revisions had 64vram.

But where do you see new 15" LCDs for the HR PB anyway?
Totally off topic, but the Mini OS in your signature sounds interesting - can't find much info on it - is this it?
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 08:35 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zackkmac View Post
Hi all. I've been shopping around for a PB G4 15" just to tinker with and found a few candidates. Some need new LCD screens.

I was wondering if it seems possible to install the hi-res (1440x900) panel on a PB that originally did not have it. Judging by the pictures of the cables they seem to have the same connectors and all. Couldn't find much on google except one website where someone said it works. I would just like to see what your thoughts are, or if there is an even higher resolution panel that I could install.

Thanks.
It is not possible- different connectors on the LCD Panel, Different Cable.
I tried to fit display from A1138(hi res) PB in to the A1106- not working- white
screen.
But I heard about a successes installations from hi end technicians
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 09:13 PM   #21
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It is not possible- different connectors on the LCD Panel, Different Cable.
I tried to fit display from A1138(hi res) PB in to the A1106- not working- white
screen.
But I heard about a successes installations from hi end technicians
Ah, much appreciated! I just purchased an A1106 so knowing this beforehand helps.

That sucks though. Kind of odd that a hi-res MBP display works fine on a PB but not a hi-res PB screen.
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 11:17 AM   #22
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 12:01 PM   #23
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Those are very nice, but I am no longer in the market for a PowerBook. I just bought a 1.67GHz standard res 15" but was just wondering if the hi-res display panel works on the standard-res laptops.

As vrodion said, the A1138 LCD (hi-res) does not work on an A1106 (low-res), and judging by the eBay results on logic boards I saw, they use two different boards. So if I wanted it to work I would have to change the LCD and the logic board.

Plus this PowerBook isn't for me, it's for my father, and now that I think about it he may like the screen just fine since hi-res wouldn't be good on his eyes. I was looking into replacing the screen because it has the infamous slight warp.
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 12:44 PM   #24
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Ah, gotcha! From reading the first post I thought you were in the market for a complete 1.67HR.

Yep, logic boards are definitely different. I remember shopping for a logic board on mine too and it was more difficult because the 1.67 low-res boards were so much more prevalent at the time.
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 03:08 PM   #25
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Plus this PowerBook isn't for me, it's for my father, and now that I think about it he may like the screen just fine since hi-res wouldn't be good on his eyes.
My dad was unhappy with his hi-res PB until I changed the resolution to (I think) 1152 X 720 so he could read text easier.
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