Register FAQ / Rules Forum Spy Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > PowerPC Macs

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Jun 28, 2010, 10:16 PM   #1
wjlafrance
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Madison, WI
PowerBook G4 dies when unplugged

Hey folks. I just bought a PowerBook G4 off of craigslist today. 1.67GHz G4 processor, 15" screen, etc etc. The battery shows 99%, and when I unplug it I can count one Mississippi, two Mississippi, three Mississippi, four.. oops, it's dead. In the menu bar I can see it recognizing that it's switched to battery a split second before the screen goes black.

An excerpt from System Profiler, leading me to believe the battery is fine:
Battery Installed: Yes
First low level warning: No
Full Charge Capacity (mWh): 3615
Remaining Capacity (mWh): 3587
Amperage (mA): 0
Voltage (mV): 12494
Cycle Count: 274

Any ideas?
__________________
Early 2011 MacBook Pro 17", 2.3GHz i7 (8MB L3), 16GB RAM, 1.25TB Fusion Drive
Mid 2010 Mac Pro, 6 x 3.33GHz Xeon, 16GB RAM, 2 x 1TB HDD
Mac Plus, Mac Classic II, PowerMac G5, and more
wjlafrance is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 28, 2010, 11:04 PM   #2
DesmoPilot
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Wow, it's even under the 300 cycle count for warranty's. Have no idea what could be wrong, tried the Apple hardware test?
__________________
MacBook Pro 15" i7 2.66GHz w/HR-AG|OWC Data Doubler w/OCZ Vertex 2 180GB SSD and Hitachi 7K500 500GB HDD
Google Nexus S 4.1.1 Jelly Bean
DesmoPilot is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 28, 2010, 11:08 PM   #3
flopticalcube
macrumors G4
 
flopticalcube's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: In the velcro closure of America's Hat
Reset the PMU?

Quote:
The Power Manager is an integrated circuit (computer chip) that is usually on the logic board of the PowerBook and iBook. As the name implies, it is responsible for power management of the computer. It controls backlighting, hard disk spin down, sleep and wake, some charging aspects, trackpad control, and some input/output as it relates to the computer sleeping.

Over time, the settings in the Power Manager may become unusable, which can result in operational anomalies with the computer. Examples include not turning on, not waking from sleep, not charging the battery, or not seeing the AC Adapter, among others.
__________________
Read the Rules / Search the Forums / Use a Descriptive Title
Mac Won't Boot?
flopticalcube is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 28, 2010, 11:10 PM   #4
iThinkergoiMac
macrumors 68030
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Terra
Replace the battery and you'll be set, it's just a dead battery. I know system profiler tells you it's fine but it's just a bad battery.
__________________
13" 2009 MBP, 2.26 GHz C2D, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HDD; 2.2 GHz C2D MB, 6 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD; 32 GB iPod Touch 3G
-FWIW, my handle is iThink_ergo_iMac. There seems to be some confusion on this issue.-
iThinkergoiMac is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 28, 2010, 11:15 PM   #5
wjlafrance
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Madison, WI
Quote:
Originally Posted by flopticalcube View Post
Reset the PMU?
First thing I tried. I also tried reset-nvram, set-defaults, reset-all to no avail, followed by a triple PRAM reset. No dice.

I'll ask one of my instructors who's an Apple fanatic if he happens to have a spare battery laying around.
__________________
Early 2011 MacBook Pro 17", 2.3GHz i7 (8MB L3), 16GB RAM, 1.25TB Fusion Drive
Mid 2010 Mac Pro, 6 x 3.33GHz Xeon, 16GB RAM, 2 x 1TB HDD
Mac Plus, Mac Classic II, PowerMac G5, and more
wjlafrance is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 29, 2010, 02:43 AM   #6
wjlafrance
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Madison, WI
When I restarted, it had rolled the time back to the epoch, even after I previously set it to today. I believe this indicates a dead PRAM battery? I don't have much experience with PRAM, but I know that when a CMOS battery dies, you can kiss your PC working as expected goodbye until it's replaced.

Does this sound reasonable? The previous owner said this was happening before he bought the new battery (although that doesn't explain how he cycled it 274 times, maybe he bought it used?). I figure it's worth the $5 to try it.

EDIT -
I'm giving it the Apple suggested four hours of running off the power supply without a battery installed, since the PRAM battery is apparently rechargeable. Meanwhile installing Leopard combo upgrade. I really hope the logic board isn't a lemon. Backlit keyboards aren't cool on desktops.
__________________
Early 2011 MacBook Pro 17", 2.3GHz i7 (8MB L3), 16GB RAM, 1.25TB Fusion Drive
Mid 2010 Mac Pro, 6 x 3.33GHz Xeon, 16GB RAM, 2 x 1TB HDD
Mac Plus, Mac Classic II, PowerMac G5, and more

Last edited by wjlafrance; Jun 29, 2010 at 04:17 AM.
wjlafrance is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 29, 2010, 08:20 AM   #7
Hrududu
macrumors 68000
 
Hrududu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Wichita KS
Sounds like one of the cells in the Battery is dead. When the Mac tried to pull power from it, it thinks the battery is dead. I've got a battery in my 12" Powerbook that is similar to that one. It'll last for about 45 min or so, but as soon as it hits about 68% remaining, it goes to sleep and won't come on again until I attach power. When I plug it, it shows the battery discharged.
__________________
Quad 2.5 G5, MBP 2.6 17", DP 2.0 G5, DP 1.42 MDD, 17 PowerBook 1.67, 12" PowerBook 1.5, TiBooks 867 & 667, iMac G3 500, Cubes 500 & 450, B&W G3 450 & 350, iBook 300's & 366, Beige G3 350, PDQ G3 233
Hrududu is online now   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 29, 2010, 10:58 AM   #8
zen.state
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
I would guess dead cell also. If so it would be about a $100 fix.
zen.state is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 29, 2010, 03:53 PM   #9
wjlafrance
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Madison, WI
I left it running over night to recharge the PRAM battery and no dice, so I'm guessing that needs to be replaced. What's really interesting is that if I close the lid and unplug the power cable, then plug it back in somewhere else, it'll awake from sleep but has forgotten the system time and my wifi network, leading me to believe that main power may be fine but the PRAM is just shot.. but then main power should be holding the PRAM for me.

I can't afford a new battery right now, so I'm just going to get a new PRAM battery and see where we go from there. Anyone have a guide for cracking an AlBook open?
__________________
Early 2011 MacBook Pro 17", 2.3GHz i7 (8MB L3), 16GB RAM, 1.25TB Fusion Drive
Mid 2010 Mac Pro, 6 x 3.33GHz Xeon, 16GB RAM, 2 x 1TB HDD
Mac Plus, Mac Classic II, PowerMac G5, and more
wjlafrance is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 29, 2010, 04:19 PM   #10
666sheep
macrumors 68030
 
666sheep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Poland
http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Repair/I...-Battery/635/1
666sheep is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 29, 2010, 09:23 PM   #11
kbfr08
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
If you feel comfortable doing so, you can disassemble the battery and replace the cells. It's an easy job, I did it to my macbook.

Your battery probably has a dead cell, you can actually see an air bubble in the Li-Ion cell if it has gone bad. The cells should not have any air in them unless they're dead.

To replace a cell, cut the wires for + and - and dispose of the battery properly. Find a similar mAh and Voltage battery on ebay, then solder it into place making note of the polarity. I think you need 6 cells for the battery, you could try only replacing the dead cells though. Individual cells cost about $7 each on eBay depending on the seller.
kbfr08 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 30, 2010, 02:52 AM   #12
wjlafrance
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Madison, WI
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbfr08 View Post
If you feel comfortable doing so, you can disassemble the battery and replace the cells. It's an easy job, I did it to my macbook.

Your battery probably has a dead cell, you can actually see an air bubble in the Li-Ion cell if it has gone bad. The cells should not have any air in them unless they're dead.

To replace a cell, cut the wires for + and - and dispose of the battery properly. Find a similar mAh and Voltage battery on ebay, then solder it into place making note of the polarity. I think you need 6 cells for the battery, you could try only replacing the dead cells though. Individual cells cost about $7 each on eBay depending on the seller.
Although I love being able to tell stories about potentially killing myself, I'll pass this time. I found a few on ebay for around $30.
__________________
Early 2011 MacBook Pro 17", 2.3GHz i7 (8MB L3), 16GB RAM, 1.25TB Fusion Drive
Mid 2010 Mac Pro, 6 x 3.33GHz Xeon, 16GB RAM, 2 x 1TB HDD
Mac Plus, Mac Classic II, PowerMac G5, and more
wjlafrance is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Jun 30, 2010, 11:51 PM   #13
wjlafrance
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Madison, WI
Just as mysterious as the problem itself, I tried starting the computer today with it unplugged (I've been doing this every so often, with a teaspoon of wishful thinking) and it started up just fine. The battery is at 62% and falling, and I'm getting great battery life.

If I had to speculate, I'd say something inside the computer was extremely discharged and took forever to recharge.. or something like that.

EDIT -
The issue is back. An Apple Genius basically told me "Yeah, when a logic board is failing, it'll work sometimes and not other times."

The computer has been admitted to the Macintosh nursing home, also known as eBay. Someone else's problem. (I stated that it doesn't run off the battery)
__________________
Early 2011 MacBook Pro 17", 2.3GHz i7 (8MB L3), 16GB RAM, 1.25TB Fusion Drive
Mid 2010 Mac Pro, 6 x 3.33GHz Xeon, 16GB RAM, 2 x 1TB HDD
Mac Plus, Mac Classic II, PowerMac G5, and more

Last edited by wjlafrance; Jul 3, 2010 at 01:36 AM.
wjlafrance is offline   0 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > PowerPC Macs

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Macbook Pro X on Battery, Dies when unplugged Holmes88 MacBook Pro 12 Oct 18, 2013 11:45 PM
Cable error.... When unplugged. Iamayevee iOS 7 12 Sep 19, 2013 01:55 AM
iPhone 4 not turning on while unplugged? samcollins1 iPhone 1 Jun 18, 2013 07:50 PM
MacBook Dies When Unplugged kecb MacBook 4 Jan 8, 2013 05:04 AM
i unplugged my ipad without ejecting kingdummkopf iPad 25 Jul 9, 2012 09:17 PM

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:14 AM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC