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DouglasCarroll

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 27, 2016
377
381
Hi!

I was wondering what kind of interesting add ons do people use with their PPC powerbooks? I have a last generation 17" 1.67 Ghz Powerbook G4 and I'm always looking for ways to make it more useful. A couple of the hardware add ons that I enjoy using are the RadioShark FM tuner, and the Elgato turbo 264 video encoder. I'm actually shocked at how well that works when I copy dvd's and then re-encode them, very useful. I was also using a usb wifi add on for awhile but found it a little unstable and have gone back to the internal airport extreme as it is just less crash prone for me. I've also found that my new bluetooth game pads work perfectly fine with my powerbooks bluetooth so that's great. I bought a midi interface to adapt to an old keyboard I have and it also worked flawlessly. Does anyone have any cool recommendations for the PC Card slot other than ethernet, wireless or USB adaptors? I've yet to put anything in this port but would love to use it for something cool!

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!!
 
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Dronecatcher

macrumors 603
Jun 17, 2014
5,209
7,795
Lincolnshire, UK
I've never tried one but once upon a time you could get PCMCIA cellular cards (GPRS I think) to give you mobile browsing - of course, it's easier now to tether to your mobile phone instead.

One that I've used often, though more on retro PCs than Macs, is a PCMCIA to Compact Flash adaptor - extra storage discretely tucked away - marry one to a Compact Flash to Micro Sd adaptor and you've potentially got an extra 256Gb in the side.
 

bobesch

macrumors 68020
Oct 21, 2015
2,138
2,217
Kiel, Germany
My gadgets:
- PCMCIA-card: for additional 2xUSB2.0 (thanks to @Eyoungren for the hint)
- PCMCIA-card: CF-Card-adapter (yeah, just in the same way as @Dronecatcher mentioned :) )
- EyeTV250Box with EyeTV2 for analog-Video-input / record video (https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/the-video-stream-cheat-project-about-imovie06-howto.2042289/)
- DV-Camcorder for all sorts of Video-input /record video / webCam etc
- iSight-Camera (FireWire-connected)
- Elgato turbo 264 video encoder (like you and @Dronecatcher have too)
- CanoScan Lide 200 Scanner
- Fujitsu ScanSnap 1500 for Batch-Scanning/background OCR with DEVONthink
- a few old AirPort Express for MultiRoom Audio with Klinke 3.5 attached Active-speakers
- USB-Keyboard
- "a second PPC-Book" to be placed next a beamer and steerable via ScreenSharing from the distance by using an adhoc Airport-network provided by one of Books.
- Thunderbolt-To-FireWire800-adapter for an adhoc FireWired network with a Thunderbolt-equipped Mac lacking of FireWire-ports
 
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catzilla

macrumors 6502
Dec 15, 2013
384
29
Rhode Island
Nothing beats the Wallstreet-Pismo line for add-ons!
For the Wallstreet:
DVD player with zoomed video PC card.
2nd battery.
Zip drive.
USB PC card (don't forget to disable processor cycling!)
Firewire PC card.
iX3D Road Rocket video card.
Wifi cards.
They also made a AC adapter that fit in a battery bay.
I went from a Mainstreet to a Titanium PBG4, so I never used the Lombard/Pismo add-ons.
 

amagichnich

macrumors 6502a
Feb 3, 2017
516
342
Stuttgart, Germany
I don't have any bit fancy an elgato - now the thing is that the requirements of those I can find state that only Intel Macs are supported. Are there different versions?
 

weckart

macrumors 603
Nov 7, 2004
5,843
3,518
Nothing beats the Wallstreet-Pismo line for add-ons!
For the Wallstreet:
...
iX3D Road Rocket video card.


I got a VillageTronic Cardbus video card for my Wallstreets/Pismos. It works well enough for basic 2D graphics and could conceivably be used in a G4 PowerBook although the graphics would be way weaker than what the AluBooks came with.
 
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bobesch

macrumors 68020
Oct 21, 2015
2,138
2,217
Kiel, Germany
I don't have any bit fancy an elgato - now the thing is that the requirements of those I can find state that only Intel Macs are supported. Are there different versions?
Well, I had a good time with Elgato and EyeTV products starting with a Mac/Leopard in 2009.
EyeTV and hardware was primarily made for both PPC and intel Macs. So was the Turbo.264 video encoder USB-stick and software.
It had been good fun to have Elgato DVBT-hardware plus eyeTV-software as our ditigal video devices and recorders. Great experience to schedule recording video in advance - program guide included a good searching function (e.g. "japan cooking" "usa travel" etc.)
A lot of recorded footage is left to be watched...
Now DVBT is gone. DVBT2 hardware for Mac currently doesn't offer full options.
Elgato has sold it's eyeTV crown-jewel to Geniatech in the anticipation of looming decline of broadcast video caused by streaming video getting more and more attention.
But eyeTV encoding-hardware (eyeTV250+, Turbo.264 etc.) and legacy eyeTV v.2/v.3 software is still working properly - even on PPC hardware.
For elder eyeTV-software the internet-archive/wayback-machine might be helpful. If not, the community will be.
 

DouglasCarroll

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 27, 2016
377
381
Thanks for the good ideas everyone. Does anyone recommend any particular model of pcmcia-flash card adaptor that they have had good luck with?

I forgot I also have the el gato usb tv tuner, i hardly use it though. The post reminded me I should dig it out!
 

bobesch

macrumors 68020
Oct 21, 2015
2,138
2,217
Kiel, Germany
Thanks for the good ideas everyone. Does anyone recommend any particular model of pcmcia-flash card adaptor that they have had good luck with?
I forgot I also have the el gato usb tv tuner, i hardly use it though. The post reminded me I should dig it out!
Here's a picture of the microSD-CF-adapter, that fits into my PCMCIA-CFcard-adapter.
Make sure, the CF card is a thin one - otherwise it won't fit.
I use to make scheduled backups of my documents-folder onto the microSD card with CarbonCopyCloner. The microSD the goes to the ExpressCard/34-SD-card-adapter on my 15" early-2008 intel MacbookPro an backups it's content to that MBP's drive. So I have all information of the PowerBook also available on the MacBookPro. When swapping the 15" with the 17" G4PB I just have to move the PCMCIA-Card to the other book - both use the same backup-routine ...
Does your elgatoTV-tuner supports line in from composite-video to display any analog video-source? If not, the eyeTV250+ Box is a nice gadget, e.g. to hook any Camcorder or VHS-recorder to the PowerBook. Got my eyeTV250+ for about 10€ plus shipping.

PCMCIA-CF-Adapter.JPG
 
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