iMac G3 options

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by walterwashere, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Bonjour! I have a slot loading (Bondi Blue; 333 mhz, I think) iMac G3, as of right now, I have nothing to do with it. Of course, I could put system 9 or tiger on it, it's fairly easy. But I feel like making it a fully fledged modern all-in-one. Aside from wanting it to be able to run OS X Mountain Lion, Does anyone know what type of motherboard I should use? Also, tips are very much so welcome! This is my first hackintosh, I'm very excited and I really want to capture the essence of the first gen iMac. :apple:

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  2. macrumors 6502a


    If you haven't already, you might want to look at Arkious's thread:

    If I were you, I would pick up a Mini and fit its internals into the iMac. I'm doing the same now that I own a G4 Mini...

    Are you keeping the CRT or putting an LCD in there?
  3. orestes1984, Oct 28, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2012

    macrumors 65816

    If its slot loading it will be a Blueberry iMac not the Bondi Blue exclusive to the original iMac. You will most likely have the iMac DV model number M5521. Your biggest issue is going to be the custom size/shape of the motherboard.

    I'd imagine your standard sized motherboards for most hardware out there is not going to fit, you may even have to go down to something like Nano ITX and then you'd have a whole lot of other issues, i.e. not running a full scale CPU, having enough power to run it and etc.

    If you wanted to reuse components such as the monitor etc, you could do it as the monitor uses a fairly standard d-sub connector, however you're going to have to work out the pinouts to connect it to something modern. The standard CRT monitor is going to take up a fair bit of case room though.

    If you do decide to pull the monitor out you face the issue of discharging the transformer/capictors, which is not for the faint hearted if you've never played around with CRTs before. Do be aware there is enough voltage in a CRT monitor to kill you 10 times over if not properly discharged.

    I guess you could save a lot of room by going down this path and replacing the monitor with an equivalent sized LCD... probably 13" or so as it translates for monitor sizes between CRT and LCD.

    Once you've got an empty case you're going to have a whole lot of fabrication to do, mounting posts for a motherboard, probably Micro-ATX, finding a place to mount a power supply and making mounts for it, remounting an optical drive and hard drive and then working out things like a CPU that will run cool enough not to cook itself in the iMac case.

    No matter which way you look at it it's going to be lots of custom fabrication to get things to work. Not for the faint hearted if you don't know a thing or two about computers and best left to the experienced modder.

    NB: This is just a thought exercise from what I know of these machines, I have not even contemplated doing this before, good luck.

    EDIT: see above for someone who is actually doing it.
  4. macrumors newbie

    I'm definitely removing the CRT, although it is a very daunting, somewhat scary process. I think I'll move forward with the project once I find the nessecary components that will fit into the body of the G3. Good luck with your G4 Mini project!
  5. macrumors regular

    Is it really reasonable for an unqualified person to mess around with a CRT? I haven't had to do any work on my computers yet that truly was beyond the ability of a layman but I feel like this is it. I don't pretend to know anything about CRT monitors, but when I was looking into arcade machines, the warning I got was that messing up could actually kill you. Would a TV repairman (do those still exist?) be able to do that? If you didn't need him/her to do anything else I am sure the cost would be reasonable especially if you are serious about this.

    Again I am more asking this than telling. If I am blowing this way out of proportion, please let me know. I would just hate to see one of our own hurt themselves doing something like this.
  6. cocacolakid, Oct 28, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2012

    macrumors 65816


    You do have to discharge the CRT before touching it, and be extremely careful in everything involving the CRT. Not only is there the risk of shock but the CRT can also violently implode. The neck area is the most fragile part. It's an excellent idea to just take the Mac to a local TV repair shop and ask them to safely discharge the CRT (and even remove and dispose of it).
  7. macrumors 65816

    About 10 times over as I said, it's not unusual for these things to hold about 2000 volts worth of charge. You only need 1/10th of that and not even to make your heart skip a few beats.

    I've seen backyarders do it with a screwdriver :rolleyes: and I've heard of the stories of people who get it wrong. If you want to see what its like to ride the lightning, well... go right ahead, but CRTs are one thing I don't tend to go near myself for good reason.
  8. macrumors newbie

    Nothing's being blown out of proportion, the risk is real although I've been allowing the crt to discharge on its own. Plus, I've diffused my fair share of CRT's before. The greatest risk in discharging a crt would be discharging one made prior to the 2000's.
  9. macrumors P6


    The volts aren't the thing that harm living things. It's the amps. Only about 500ma are needed to stop a heart and 250ma will disrupt one.

    The G3 iMac's CRT was designed in the late 90's and made through 2003 with the same 1990's design.
  10. macrumors 6502a


    Hello there,

    I'm glad to see your giving the g3 some life!

    Firstly, the CRT can be harmful if not treat with respect. I would say I'm a novice but now feel quite happy to know where my hands can and can't go on the CRT department. I discharged mine with the screwdriver and wire attached to the frame (ground). I've done this method many times and as long as you ensure you touch the pins under the suction cup you are fine.

    Now, there is benefits of keeping the CRT and there are benefits of scrapping it and replacing. The benefit is it keeps its originality and still looks completely like it should do inside and out. The CRT is curved class and an LCD is flat. The down side it is harder! But if your gonna do a job it's worth doing it well either way u choose.

    There are many ways of doing this mod, but u can actually fit a micro ATX if u remove all the old components and start empty. But u need to decide where to start, the biggest thing is to keep or not to keep the CRT.

    Gimme a shout if u want any advice, mines almost there now... I've had to iron out many many issues but its because im trying to keep mine as original as possible lol
  11. macrumors newbie

    Hey! Your post was one of the first I saw when I began venturing into this project. One of the biggest choices I have to make is whether to keep the original screen, It didn't seem possible without finding the smallest motherboard possible. How is the screen on your iMac? I might keep it if I can get my hands on an intel NUC.
  12. macrumors 6502a


    screen is fantastic! only issue is trying to get the darn thing recognised correctly which is where im stuck at the moment. I have a few ideas but its literally trying them till i get the right one.
  13. macrumors newbie

    I've been searching everywhere for a screen suited for the G3. They're all the same resolution, so I was thinking of just leaving it there. I also took a look at some laptop screens which seemed to fit the void and had the same 4:3 ratio. Some where up to UXGA which seems tempting.This is my first major project so I do want to get it right, there are so many places to head into in way of software, hardware, and other hacks. I might resort to building a G4 Cube hackintosh first to just test the waters and get myself familiar with disassembling, building, and hacking OS X into a small device.

    BTW, do you find yourself using the G3 daily or is it more of a hobby device? :apple:
  14. macrumors 6502a


    It was going to be my hobby device, but I've decided to sell my 27" i7 when this is finished and upgrade in the near future if required. But I will have to see what it's like. The lower resolution will make up for the performance loss.

    I like the look of the g4 mod tbh, but wouldn't offer major increases in performance over this g3 version. But like I see the biggest thing putting me off LCD, is the fact it's flat, it doesn't fit properly

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