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eddjedi

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 7, 2011
628
851
I've just added a couple of nice upgrades to my Cube, so thought I would share them in case others might find the info useful.

Firstly, as you know the Cube has no built-in audio I/O. I don't have the original USB speakers that shipped with the Cube, but from most accounts they are style over substance. For a while I have been using a cheap Chinese mini USB 'sound card' but the quality was terrible. So I picked up this Phonic Firefly 302 FireWire audio interface from eBay for under £20. It is powered straight from the FireWire port, it sounds great with headphones, and can also be plugged into speakers.

IMG_1789.jpeg

Secondly, my internal DVD-ROM has never worked properly since owning the Cube, discs always got stuck, a common problem. I noticed recently though that the optical drive no longer shows up in System Profiler at all, which leads to my question - has anyone else experienced this with a Cube? Even when discs were getting stuck it would still show up as a device and read discs etc, but now it's as if it's not even there.

Anyway I didn't want to attempt replacing or repairing the internal DVD-ROM as they are prone to failure anyway, so I picked up this neat little External one which is also powered solely by FireWire so no external PSU required. It works as a boot drive which will be handy if I ever have to do an OS install from scratch again. The model is a Dell SEM-Q10E, this was also from eBay and under £10.

IMG_1790.jpeg

And finally, although I usually like to stick to 'period' apps and wallpapers etc, I think the Big Sur background looks great so thought I'd post a photo of my setup :) I was not a fan of the black keyboard and mouse that came with the Cube, I think this mini iMac keyboard and white mouse suit it much better.

IMG_1788.jpeg

Hopefully this will help anyone looking for similar peripherals, being limited to USB 1.1 rules out most modern external optical drives and audio interfaces so FireWire was really the only way to go.
 

eddjedi

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 7, 2011
628
851
You can replace the original DVD drive using a slimline IDE player that fits in the original housing of the Cube DVD player. I have done it and it works great and you don't need an external device

Yes I read that certain iMac slot loading drives fit the original housing, but I couldn't find any on eBay. Do you have a link to the one you used, or a fitting guide?
 

Wouter3

macrumors regular
Oct 31, 2017
199
60
Netherlands
It has to be an IDE slimdrive. Look on Ebay for slimline IDE drives e.g. at:

The Cube IDE connector to the drive is 180 degrees turned and does not fit in the housing, so you need to get a proper one, e.g.:

You also need a 4-pin power connector (e.g. old PC floppy drive connector) to connect to the 5V Molex power connector.
Installation is best done by taking out the complete old dvd drive from the housing. Install the new slimdrive in the housing by using double sided tape. By using the old housing the drive can be easily installed and is fitted in the right place. In my case the Cube would not boot anymore, so I had to make the DVD drive maseter and the SSD/Disk slave. Then everything worked like a charm
 

claesjanwolff

macrumors newbie
Feb 18, 2017
20
1
You can replace the original DVD drive using a slimline IDE player that fits in the original housing of the Cube DVD player. I have done it and it works great and you don't need an external device
Do you have a link for this slimline IDE player?
 

Wouter3

macrumors regular
Oct 31, 2017
199
60
Netherlands
Do you have a link for this slimline IDE player?
I think I gave it in the post above. They are still available on eBay: https://www.ebay.nl/sch/sis.html?_n...Internal 12 7mm Slimline&_itemId=324060671200

When I ordered mine, I received in fact 2 drives. I just used the second one to install in another Cube I just got. You just need to empty the old Cube DVD case and install the new slim drive with some double side tape. Also get the right adapter that is 180 degrees turned compared to the original one as described above. Just got one at:

Best of luck
 
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