Ancient Macs in the Wild

Discussion in 'Apple Collectors' started by iindigo, Aug 29, 2010.

  1. iindigo macrumors 6502a

    iindigo

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #1
    Not much to say that the title already hasn't. Where have you seen really old Macs that are still in use every day?

    I'll kick the thread off. A few months ago when doing a one-shot voiceover gig, the guy at the front desk of the recording studio I went to was still using one of the original translucent white iBook G3s. It was running OS X, but I didn't look closely enough to see what release. This was in Tokyo, up towards Akihabara.
     
  2. 4JNA macrumors 68000

    4JNA

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Location:
    looking for trash files
    #2
    favorite one for me is a local computer shop. they build/fix/sell only pc related stuff, but the shop computer and the register computer are both imac g3/500 systems. both installed and working since new ('01, '02 ?) without any failure. it's fun to see this stuff still in use!
     
  3. max¥¥ macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    Location:
    Over there....
    #3
    my main laptop! a ice-white (translucent) ibook g3 500 running 10.4.11, and i think my local museum still has a couple of the touchscreen modded imac g3's
     
  4. Mike Macintosh macrumors regular

    Mike Macintosh

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    Location:
    Washington State
    #4
    Visited a old teacher after school hours, he was famous for keeping vintage Macs in his classroom, the Apple II and Mac Classic Combo I remember him with are still present in his classroom along with a shiny new Unibody Macbook Pro. :p

    However not to sure if they will be in there this year as he retired in June :(
     
  5. Roderick Usher macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2006
    #5
    Back in 2002 I saw a Mac Plus being used in the University of Iowa main library's shipping department. It appeared to be running an ancient version of Microsoft Excel.

    I'm more into Apple IIs than Macs, and I've seen some evidence of them in the wild. The Apple II's expandability made it an early favorite of scientists who needed to interface it with a variety of instruments, and it seems it's still hanging around. Examples:

    An Apple II Plus (manufactured 1979-1983) being used at Dartmouth for lower-level physics labs:

    http://www.dartmouth.edu/~physics/labs/descriptions/ball.spring.html
    http://www.dartmouth.edu/~physics/labs/descriptions/projectile.motion.html

    The pages are dated 5/21/2004 and 6/16/2004. Identified in the equipment list:

    [​IMG]



    An Apple IIe (from the look of it, a pre-Platinum model, which would place it 1983-1986), being used with a Finnigan MAT-251 mass spectrometer at the Earth Systems Center for Stable Isotopic Studies at Yale:

    http://earth.geology.yale.edu/escsis/escsis2006.ppt (PowerPoint file - page 3 shows the setup)

    It seems the Apple IIe was the standard controller for the MAT-251. They had this setup as of 2006, but their homepage now notes: "The system has been retired and cannibalized long ago." :(

    [​IMG]



    Another Apple IIe, used with another mass spectrometer, at the Trofimuk United Institute of Geology in Novosibirsk, Russia:

    http://list.uvm.edu/cgi-bin/wa?A2=ind0512&L=ISOGEOCHEM&P=R6818

    The post is dated 12/15/2005:

    Six days later, he fixes it the old-fashioned way:

    http://list.uvm.edu/cgi-bin/wa?A2=ind0512&L=ISOGEOCHEM&P=R8422

    Strictly speaking, I doubt it was necessary to replace all the capacitors, but as someone that still goofs around with a soldering iron, I was gratified to see him doing this level of repair. :)

    I'd bet money on the Russian Apple IIe still being in use!
     
  6. dmr727 macrumors G3

    dmr727

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    #6
    ^^^ very cool!

    In the vintage Mac world, the 80s era machines are beginning to need capacitor replacements. The thinking is to just do all the caps, simply because the others are likely to go soon anyway. There are guys on 68kmla that are selling tantalum capacitor sets for various Macs. It's pretty cool to see the community come together to keep the old machines working. :)
     
  7. Roderick Usher macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2006
    #7
    I have a Rev-0 Apple II from '77 whose power supply clearly has a cap that's near death - a loud *pop!* whenever I flip the switch. For now, I've gotten around this by just leaving the switch in the On position and hooking up a Kensington System Saver fan, whose switch is fine. I'm just buying time though. :)
     
  8. ulbador macrumors 68000

    ulbador

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    #8
    My dad still regularly uses a network of 3 Quadras 900s and a couple of eMacs (for printing). He's burnt through 4 or 5 Blueberries and a couple of eMacs, but those Quadras have been running since new. All backed up daily on 100 meg SCSI zip disks and a couple of SCSI 40 meg drives (the kind that had the form factor of the Mac Classic, so you could stack em).

    Don't think those guys have been shut off in almost 20 years.

    He really needs to upgrade as his business would be SOL if even something simple as a PSU failed. The "upgrade" path I've been pushing lately is to just buy a bargain bin PC, stick Windows XP on it and run on his Quadras in Basilisk 2 windows. He probably wouldn't be able to tell the difference, and he could back up everything in the matter of minutes on a flash drive instead of hours to zip disks.
     
  9. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    #9
    My buddy's dad still has a Power Mac G4 Graphite 400MHz pulling server duty!
     
  10. im_to_hyper macrumors 65816

    im_to_hyper

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2004
    Location:
    Glendale, California, USA
    #10
    A local print shop has a Bondi, slot loading iMac as their checkout/register machine. I'm guessing its the 233MHz model, and a peek at the menu bar with Spotlight shows that someone must have used XPostFacto on it to install Tiger.

    Also has Office 2004 from what I could see. I didn't want to creep over the teller's shoulder too long though!
     
  11. David Schmidt macrumors 6502

    David Schmidt

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Southeastern USA
    #11
    The local wine merchant has two Gooseneck/desk lamp iMac G4s running their checkout system. Do they qualify as ancient yet? ;)
     
  12. MacTech68, Oct 14, 2010
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2011

    MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #12
    Being known as a tech who started on Apple IIs, my workshop was visited by a chap clutching a dead IIc.

    He explained that it had been running a scientific research program that was custom written and that the research was a 20 year program with only one year to go. The purchase order came from the CSIRO.

    Another customer came in with 5 Mac II machines filled with several analog to Digital cards. They all had leaking SMD caps. The machines had been rotated into and out of service until they were all dead. These machines were used on a riffle range providing computerized target practice results and yes, this was a government office too. :eek:

    Oh, and the Apple II and IIe power supply usually needs the power switch replaced to resolve the loud crack sound (its the switch arcing), and then there's a small 220uF 16v cap in the middle of the PSU which slowly fails which makes the machine blink-blink-blink. Many other causes for this but if you remove all the cards and she powers up it may just be that one. :)
     
  13. Roderick Usher macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2006
    #13
    I'm curious - what turned out to be wrong with the IIc? Did everything come out all right?
     
  14. mgartner0622 macrumors 65816

    mgartner0622

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    #14
    My school runs on mostly eMacs, however we have a few G3 & G4 iBook carts, as well as a Macintosh Classic and a few G3 iMacs.
     
  15. MacTech68, Oct 15, 2010
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2011

    MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #15
    Internal PSU was fried. These plug-in to the motherboard (for those who aren't familiar). I never got a chance to repair it since it was quicker to swap it with one we had as a display of antique Apple gear.

    The guy was extremely happy and we spent a little while chatting about the research. Something to do with water quality testing in the field, hence the need for a portable machine. :)
     
  16. DoorMouse macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2010
    Location:
    Sydney
    #16
    I found this at my gran's place the other day- she still uses it for basic typing (on claris works) etc connected up to a printer. I was pretty impressed it was still working.
     

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  17. No ice please macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    #18
    The computer lab at my old school comprised of Blue iMac G3s. The main computer lab contained eMacs, 1 Quicksilver mirror doors(apple ACDs), and 2 Quicksilver dual 1ghz (with 2 Huge apple CRTs). The library has multi colored iMac G3s and multi color iBook clamshells. The English room contains iBook G4s. That school also had older beige macs that are still running. They were PowerMacs 5500s and some Power Mac G3 AIOs.
     
  18. R94N macrumors 68020

    R94N

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #19
    If they keep running fine for your needs why change? :)
     
  19. techchallenger macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2010
    #20
    Moore Bros?
     
  20. David Schmidt macrumors 6502

    David Schmidt

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Southeastern USA
    #21
    Nope, it is literally "The Wine Merchant."
     

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