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AphoticD

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Feb 17, 2017
2,111
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DSC_0090.jpg


I've been mostly away from MR forums for some time (still lurking a little), but recently created some space for myself to pick up where I left off with some of my old Macs.

So, first up are the Titaniums.

There was a very long thread on the first few repairs of these PowerBook G4s here..

Since then I have acquired a few more Titaniums (11 of 'em in total). One was sent off to another forum user to successfully repair an old Mercury 400MHz back to working order.

I'm left with 10 units;
Code:
________________  _______________  _________________  _______________  ________
Unit/Model        RAM              HDD                ODD              WiFi
----------------  ---------------  -----------------  ---------------  --------

#1  667MHz (DVI)  768MB (512,256)  20GB 4200rpm HDD   Combo CD-RW/DVD  Airport
- (Repair highlighted in 2018 thread “parts” machine)
- Requires new LCD panel and 2x hinges (on hand).
- Physically good condition (some paint scratched/damaged)


#2  867MHz        1GB (2x512)      60GB 5400rpm HDD   Combo CD-RW/DVD  Airport
- (Repair highlighted in 2018 thread “hero” machine)
- No speaker output.
- Physically excellent condition (minor paint scuffs only)


#3  400MHz        1GB (2x512)      20GB 4200rpm HDD   DVD-ROM          Airport
- Replaced broken hinge, top case, logic board and ODD.
- Glued cracks in frame.
- Disconnected failed PRAM battery.
- Physically excellent condition (minor paint scuffs only)


#4  867MHz        1GB (2x512)      80GB 5400rpm HDD   SuperDrive       Airport
- No speaker output.
- Physically excellent condition (near-new, no scuffs)


#5  550MHz        None             None               Yes. Untested    None
- Missing HDD cable.
- POST fail. 3 soft beeps and indicator light flashes.
- Tested different RAM and removed PRAM battery. No change.
- Physically poor condition (some scratches, minor dents and cracks in top case.)
- Hinges are OK.


#6  400MHz        512MB (2x256)    10GB MK1016GAP     DVD-ROM No Go    Airport
- Repaired failed space bar depress action.
- Break in frame at ODD missing piece and crack at left hinge.
- Missing 4 bottom case screws.
- Speakers tested OK, but no sound out due to logic board incorrectly reporting headphones connected at all times.
- Sound out on headphones OK.
- Display backlight yellowing and some grime build up inside display panel around center.
- Disconnected failed PRAM battery.
- Physically fair condition (some cracks in frame and yellowed display)


#7  667MHz (DVI)  512MB (2x256)    30GB MK3018GAS     Combo CD-RW/DVD  None
- Display right hinge sheered off. Boots OK.
- Has Japanese keyboard.
- Physically good condition (some paint scuffs and scratches)


#9  550MHz        512MB (2x256)    None               None             Airport
- Missing bottom case, ODD, HDD, HDD cable and battery.
- Right hinge sheered off.
- Boots OK with test drive.
- Firewire port not recognising external devices.
- Serial not set.
- Power light flickering.
- Physically good condition (some paint scuffs and scratches)


#10  667MHz (DVI) 512MB (2x256)    40GB 4200rpm HDD   SuperDrive      Airport
- Replaced display assembly, logic board, keyboard and power button.
- No speaker output.
- Physically excellent condition (minor paint scuffs only)


#11  1GHz         512MB (2x256)    None               Combo CD-RW/DVD None
- Parted out - sacrificed for other units.
- Faulty power button.
- Broken Hinges.
- Faulty Keyboard.
- Logic Board boots, but has issue with sleep and fails to recognize Firewire devices.
- No speaker output.
- Runs very hot.
- Physically poor condition (broken top case frame and display hinges)

(The missing unit #8 was sold off for parts last year.)

I have quite a job to revive all units to good working order.

So far, I am happy with repairs of #2, #4 and #10, although the failed speakers are a bummer. The speakers are glued into the top case, so the chances of finding a replacement top case in good condition with functional speakers is mighty slim. Overall I think this is as far as I can go with repairs to these units unless someone has a magic fix for failed speakers on the DVI and later model Titaniums.

#3 is a nice example of a first gen Mercury, now in pretty good shape, and #6 is about as good as it is going to get.

---

So this leaves the following repairs to complete:

#1 - The display assembly is already dismantled during the previous repair thread mentioned above (2018). Now I need to glue in the replacement hinges (ready and waiting) and install the replacement LCD panel from unit #5. Once this job is done, it will be fully functional and in good shape.

#5 & #9 to be combined into one working unit; Display assembly, bottom case and ODD from #5, HDD and HDD cable from #11, which makes #9 fully functional and #5 becomes another parts unit (logic board bad, top case cracked, display hinges broken, LCD panel removed).

#7 - Install replacement hinges which I have already acquired. It's quite a job to break open the display assembly, apply fresh glue and re-assemble. Things can go bad pretty quickly.

----

I didn't take any photos of the repairs to unit #10 (taking parts from #11), which I did last weekend over many hours and quite a few beers, but the job wasn't much different to the repairs mentioned in the earlier thread.

I will commit to photo journalling the rest of the repairs, starting right about now...

-AphoticD
 
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AphoticD

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Feb 17, 2017
2,111
3,033
First up, I hadn't come across this particular fix before, so anyone with a Titanium may find this useful...

After I had finished working on unit #2 and #10, I had them together and booting, but was finding my hand would push down on the lower right palm rest, separating the frame and the palm rest, which made it feel like the top case wasn't solid.

I dismantled them both again to see if I could do anything about it, but found the area beneath the optical drive where the top case frame is glued down is a bit too tight to squeeze some glue in, unless i had a syringe or something to do the job.

DSC_0002.jpg
1. If the palm rest area pushes in when you press down on it...

DSC_0003.jpg
2. Remove the bottom case. Remove the center locking bar for the HDD and ODD, then remove the HDD and ODD (disconnecting the inverter and modem boards) to get underneath the lower right of the top case.

DSC_0004.jpg
3. Get some 2mm thermal pads or something similar. I already had some previously cut up pieces from a failed repair job, which were perfect for this.

DSC_0006.jpg
4. Stack two triangle slices into the corner above the PRAM battery (approx 4mm thickness in total)

DSC_0007.jpg
5. Reinstall the ODD, modem board and inverter assembly. Reconnect the boards and apply some fresh kapton tape if necessary.

DSC_0008.jpg
6. Add another 2mm pad on top of the inverter where the pink/white cable connects.

DSC_0009.jpg
7. Reinstall the HDD with the locking bracket and re-attach the bottom case.

DSC_0011.jpg
8. No more movement! - At this stage, boot it up and pop a disc in the ODD to ensure alignment with the slot is still as expected.

DSC_0013.jpg
9. (Optional) If the left side palm rest is doing the same, just pop a small strip of 1mm thermal pad in the battery bay. Not too close to the corner or the battery will have trouble going in. There isn't much room here, so the 1mm padding seems to make all the difference.

In conclusion, if the palm rest at the left or right is depressing as you put weight on it, this quick fix should help.

-AphoticD
 

AphoticD

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Feb 17, 2017
2,111
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Now to begin to repair the Onyx series 550MHz models (units #5 and #9).

I stripped them both down to get a better idea of what is needed.

Firstly my plan was simply:
- Replace display assembly - from 5
- Replace bottom case - from 5
- Replace optical drive - from 5
- Replace HDD cable - from 11
- Replace HDD - from 11

Unit #5 wouldn't boot at all, so I had never seen the display come on and after much testing, I've discovered the backlight for #5 is dead. (But the hinges are good!!) So that adds yet another layer of complexity to the repair. I need to now dismantle the display assembly and replace the backlight CCFL tube in the LCD panel.

Fortunately I bought a pack of 10 CCFL tubes many years ago at the exact length for the 15.2" displays (inc Alu PB G4s) so it should just be a matter of soldering on the inverter wiring to the end of the new tube and installing it inside the lower channel of the LCD panel.. but the hard part is now getting the LCD panel out of the display assembly without damaging the rear housing, front bezel OR hinges.

Another find (after mentioning many speaker related issues in the 1st post chart) is that I can force the speakers out of the top case by prying them off the underside of the grills and breaking the adhesive substance holding them in place (using a black stick to gently slide in and pry).

In doing this I was able to remove both sets of speakers from the 2 units to test things and found that the issue unit #9 is having where there is no sound out, is something bigger as I am not getting a beep or chime out of either set of speakers OR headphones when connected. At the very least, #5 gives me the beeping error tones out of all sets of speakers (when changed over) and headphones, so I know the issue is not with the speaker kits.

DSC_0002.jpg
1. The two Onyx 550MHz units stripped and bared side by side...

DSC_0005.jpg
2. The non-POSTing unit. Still no POST even with everything disconnected (and 1 RAM stick added, tested in both top and bottom).

DSC_0006.jpg
3. The bootable #9 unit logic board. There is no visual indication for why audio and firewire are non-working...

DSC_0001.jpg
4. Again, side-by-side hero shot... To be continued...

I have confirmed unit #9 will POST and shows the flashing system folder icon on the display, but no boot chime from speakers or headphones AND I have previously encountered Firewire not being recognized on this unit. With failed Audio and Firewire, it is looking like a bit of a dud ...

So now I am faced with the question of whether I should continue with the repair of these 2 into 1 (semi) working unit in good condition (no cracks and good hinges) or cut my losses and just scrap them both as parts machines...

I'll leave it there for the day and come back to it after work next weekend.

-AphoticD
 
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AphoticD

macrumors 68020
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Feb 17, 2017
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Thanks @philgxxd. It is my pleasure to share these repairs and I'm glad someone finds it interesting!

-----

After sleeping on the idea, I decided to persevere with the repair of the combined unit #5 / #9 combo, instead of abandoning things.. So, I squeezed in a little time after work this evening to continue on now with the display(s).

DSC_0008.jpg
1. First of all, I have two matching Titanium displays.
-- unit #5 display is in good physical condition with working hinges, but backlight failure
-- unit #9 display has a broken right hinge, but the backlight and LCD panel are in good shape.

DSC_0009.jpg
2. Here I am dismantling the unit with a broken hinge. First step, remove the black philips screws attaching the hinge and the front hinge cover.

DSC_0010.jpg
3. Now we remove the 4x T6 torx screws from the sides of the display assembly.

DSC_0011.jpg
4. It is quite a process to successfully separate the glued together assembly. First, I try to pry the front bezel forward, very carefully using a thin guitar pick to assess how things are glued together.

DSC_0012.jpg
5. So it looks like the front bezel is well glued to the LCD Panel, and the bezel is glued into the rear housing along the outer edges. The first trick is to create a gap to slide the guitar pick into. Here I am carefully prying things forward with the black stick away from the rear housing.

DSC_0013.jpg
6. I can now squeeze the guitar pick into the gap.

DSC_0014.jpg
7. Once the pick is in, slide it up the display and you'll hear the glue crack, crack, crack... well I hope it was the glue!

DSC_0015.jpg
8. I now have the display front bezel separating from the rear here. I've done a few now and there is no pattern to this, it may separate easily, or more likely, with great difficulty.

DSC_0016.jpg
9. In this case, the (left?) side of the front bezel would not release from the rear housing - The one I did previously gave me no such issues.. but this one was stubborn!

DSC_0017.jpg
10. After very carefully prying with the black stick, I still couldn't get enough of a gap to slide the pick in and by this stage I was shredding my picks.. and not in the good way! 🤘

DSC_0018.jpg
11. I started separating the panel to try to open up the stuck side with a bit of leverage from the rest of the assembly (careful!)

DSC_0019.jpg
12. The LCD panel is pushed forward so that I can safely disconnect the LVDS ribbon from the rear of the panel.

DSC_0020.jpg
13. After a little back and forth with the tent formation in photo 11, I could start to see a narrow gap to slide the pick into, and then crack, crack, crack goes the glue.

DSC_0021.jpg
14. Once the bezel is released from the rear housing, the entire panel will just lift out. We can see here there has been some liquid in the side of the display assembly which has caused the hinge to corrode/oxidize. I cleaned this up with some IPA and toothbrush.

DSC_0022.jpg
15. The last part is to safely separate the front bezel from the LCD panel. You can see in the photo just how easy this piece can bend out of shape.

DSC_0023.jpg
16. I had to patiently release more glue here using the pick and came at it from a few different angles. But eventually it gave way and the bezel was only very mildly misshapen. I am confident it will re-assemble perfectly once it is finally all glued back together again.

DSC_0024.jpg
17. So a common issue I have seen with the Titaniums is the Apple logo "window pane" becoming loose inside the housing.

DSC_0025.jpg
18. Peeling back the white backing of the window piece, I can see the original glue has just given up.

DSC_0026.jpg
19. A quick fix which should hold up for some time here is just to tape it down from the inside. I'm using some high-temp Kapton tape here. Just be careful none of it shows through and keep the clear piece clean and clear of dirt / grime.

DSC_0027.jpg
20. Here is the re-affixed apple logo. Looking good...

I'll leave things there for tonight and hope to come back to it tomorrow to proceed with replacing the failed backlight CCFL tube, gluing in the replacement hinge and re-asembling / re-gluing both assemblies back together.

-AphoticD
 
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Certificate of Excellence

macrumors 6502
Feb 9, 2021
441
734
Found this online about powerbook titanium speaker replacement. It seems that it can be done.

Okay, so I decided to tackle speaker replacement, as my NOS PowerBook G4 Titanium top case (ebay) had speakers that were apparently DOA. It was a little disheartening, but here's how I removed the speaker assemblies from both sides of the top case: First, I used a small pocket knife wedged slightly underneath the plastic casing of the speaker assembly and the titanium of the top case. I was careful to not try to force too much movement too quickly, as I didn't want to break the ~20-year-old plastic speaker assemblies (note that one portion of one speaker assembly *did* separate, but it was easy to just push it back together). Eventually, I was able to free the DOA speakers from the new top case and swap them with the old speakers from my replaced top case assembly. I was scared to try a heat gun or some sort of adhesive remover to soften the glue, as these Titanium PowerBook's had notoriously fragile finishing.
04/17/20 by Anthony
 
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AphoticD

macrumors 68020
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Feb 17, 2017
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Found this online about powerbook titanium speaker replacement. It seems that it can be done.

Thanks @Certificate of Excellence .

I had a go of removing the speakers from the top case on the two units that are currently disassembled (#5 and #9) and they did come out ok. Both sets of speakers tested working fine on the #5 logic board, so now I’d like to go back to some of the other quiet units and test these speakers loosely (just plug them into the logic board while the bottom case is off) to see (hear?) what happens...
 

Macbookprodude

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So can TI G4 be overclocked via open firmware ? Also, can 2GB of memory be supported as this 1Ghz model came out the same time as the MDD.
 

AphoticD

macrumors 68020
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Feb 17, 2017
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So can TI G4 be overclocked via open firmware ? Also, can 2GB of memory be supported as this 1Ghz model came out the same time as the MDD.

I think the G3 750fx was one of the few OF overclockables. Most other models need to have the PLL resistors set physically on the board.

The Titanium’s are limited to 2x PC133 SO-DIMM slots so 2x 512MB is the physical limit. Whereas the MDD had 4x PC2700 SDRAM slots, which theoretically could accept 4x 1GB sticks, but could only address a 2GB limit.

Impressively, the Sawtooth from 1999 can handle 2GB of PC 100 SDRAM. :apple:
 

Macbookprodude

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I think the G3 750fx was one of the few OF overclockables. Most other models need to have the PLL resistors set physically on the board.

The Titanium’s are limited to 2x PC133 SO-DIMM slots so 2x 512MB is the physical limit. Whereas the MDD had 4x PC2700 SDRAM slots, which theoretically could accept 4x 1GB sticks, but could only address a 2GB limit.

Impressively, the Sawtooth from 1999 can handle 2GB of PC 100 SDRAM. :apple:

That is really strange, so the 1GHZ G4 TI is more powerful than a Sawtooth, but yet Sawtooth allows 2GB and the lappy doesn't ? Sad.
 
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Macbookprodude

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But when the TI G4 PowerBook was at 1GHZ, the memory should have been DDR as MDD 2002 came out at the same time as 1GHZ TI G4.
 

AphoticD

macrumors 68020
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But when the TI G4 PowerBook was at 1GHZ, the memory should have been DDR as MDD 2002 came out at the same time as 1GHZ TI G4.
True. Apple weren’t ready for a new system design until the Aluminum PowerBook G4 15” launched in 2003 with DDR memory.

The logic board design of the Titanium didn’t change much at all between the DVI 667MHz, 867 and 1.0Ghz models. The last two introduced a 2nd cooling fan, but otherwise remained the same.

This is why I was able to swap out the boards (and heatsinks) between a 667 and a 1.0GHz top case.
 
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AphoticD

macrumors 68020
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Feb 17, 2017
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Continuing on from the dismantling of the display assemblies (above), I now have the opportunity to replace a failed backlight in the unit #5 / #9 combo Titanium. The idea is to remove the failed CCFL tube, install a new one and re-assemble / glue together the display assembly.

Here we go!

DSC_0032.jpg
1. Now that I have the LCD panel removed, I start unscrewing the panel's steel frame, to get at the backlight channel.

DSC_0033.jpg
2. The backlight is safely removed from the LCD panel.

DSC_0034.jpg
3. Here is the obvious reason for the panel's failure. The fragile glass of the CCFL tube has cracked and tiny shards of glass fell out..

DSC_0035.jpg
4. Peeling back the rubber end-caps, I can see the solder connection to detach and then re-connect to a new tube.

DSC_0036.jpg
5. Here are my new backlight tubes, ready to fit into my PowerBook G4 15.2-inch panels. I bought a pack of 10x 327mm x 2mm CCFL tubes, sealed up in a 25mm off-cut of pvc pipe, from China for about $20 inc shipping. This is the first one I'll be using from the pack, so I'm not sure what to expect in terms of warmth / white balance.

DSC_0037.jpg
6. With the soldering iron tip hot, tinned and ready. A quick application of heat easily disconnects the wiring from the tube.

DSC_0038.jpg
7. The existing cable connects easily to the new tube with a touch of solder.

DSC_0039.jpg
8. And then again on the other side. The rubber end caps were simply peeled back during the soldering and will then slide forward into position.

DSC_0040.jpg
9. With the inverter attached to the logic board and the CCFL tube, I then plug in the 65w power supply to the Onyx board and manually short the power button switch (J21) to power on the board and backlight.

DSC_0041.jpg
10. The new backlight fires up as expected after POST and is a bright, cool, white.

DSC_0042.jpg
11. Here I begin seating the new tube into the reflective channel.

DSC_0044.jpg
12. The neutral (white) wire runs parallel along the front of the channel and meets the pink active wire to run through a tiny clip at the lower right of the LCD panel.

DSC_0045.jpg
13. This bar locks the backlight channel into place.

DSC_0046.jpg
14. I then screw the locking bar down.

DSC_0047.jpg
15. The inverter wiring is then taped back down in order to fit into the rear display assembly.

DSC_0048.jpg
16. With the LCD panel re-assembled and connected to the inverter, I power on the logic board to test that the backlight delivers across the panel.

DSC_0049.jpg
17. There is a dark spot in the center of the panel... At this stage I dismantled things again to reseat the backlight channel. When I pulled it out I could see a portion of the reflective material inside the channel was folded over itself, so I was able to gently pry it back out.

DSC_0050.jpg
18. After re-assembling the LCD panel, I connect in the LVDS cable in the rear of the display housing.

DSC_0051.jpg
19. And replaced the white tape holding the inverter wiring against the bottom of the panel with some fresh Kapton. The wires are then guided into the gray plastic channel at the hinge here.

DSC_0052.jpg
20. Inside the panel, there are two rubber stoppers propping the LCD panel up to give clearance for the sleep indicator light board here in the center.

DSC_0053.jpg
21. I tried all kinds of things including gluing these rubber pads down, but could not convince the panel to sit flush with these rubber pads in place. So, I decided to remove them completely and insulate the sleep indicator light board with a little more Kapton tape.

DSC_0056.jpg
22. With the panel fitted back into the rear-housing, I connect the LVDS, inverter and jump start the logic board. The backlight distribution is even and we get a flashing System Folder icon as expected. We have a winner!

DSC_0057.jpg
23. The final stage is to glue the front bezel down. I mixed up some 2-pack epoxy and ran a light bead of glue along the top, left and right inner edges of the front bezel, then a light bead along the front lower edge. Before re-attaching, I prepared a number of small strips of tape to securely "clamp" the bezel down to aid the glue in making a solid contact.

DSC_0059.jpg
24. I ran a series of strips of tape to hold the front bezel down onto the LCD panel while the glue dries. Don't glue onto the rounded cream/white painted area. I found out the hard way that the paint easily peels off...

DSC_0061.jpg
25. Despite a small amount of warping of the aluminum in the removal process, I was satisfied with the end result. It all seated back down as expected. All seams are acceptable. :)

I then left the glue to dry overnight while taped up and removed the tape in the morning.

The display panel is now ready to fit. But first up, I'll repeat the process of gluing things together with the 2nd display assembly and replace a broken hinge from spare parts.

I'll then have two good condition display assemblies ready to install. One for the 550MHz Onyx (#5 / #9 combo) and one for the 667MHz DVI (unit #1), which should be yet another good condition rebuild.

Next up, I'll continue to rebuild this Onyx into a functional TiBook ...
 
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Macbookprodude

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If I ever have issues with my TI G4 PowerBook, I rather pay someone. I can do the aluminum, but not the Titanium - too many plastic breakable parts.
 

AphoticD

macrumors 68020
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Feb 17, 2017
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If I ever have issues with my TI G4 PowerBook, I rather pay someone. I can do the aluminum, but not the Titanium - too many plastic breakable parts.
The Aluminum models have certainly proven their durability over time. I haven't had any real problems with them. Not like these Titaniums, with their fragile top case, outer trim, breakable display hinges, fragile inner chassis and glue separating on the top and bottom cases.

I've often seen the hinge mounts in the top case (and the rear hinge covers) oxidize like an old car battery for no apparent reason. And it's near impossible to find one that doesn't have paint chipped off at the palm rests.

But part of me just loves the look and feel of the Titanium G4 :cool:
 

AphoticD

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Feb 17, 2017
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I took photos of the final repaired LCD in Titanium #9 (Onyx 550MHz) during the week. :)

DSC_0041.jpg
1. All back together again and a fresh copy of Tiger installed. Against a light background there is a slight stage-lighting effect around the center where the inner reflective material inside the backlight channel was slightly folded back over itself. I tried to fix this, but could only do so much.

DSC_0043.jpg
2. It's bright! This is now the brightest Titanium display I have.

DSC_0044.jpg
3. Mac OS 9 runs real nice on this machine...

DSC_0036.jpg
4. Bright, beautiful and vibrant color returns to this Titanium!

One (very) happy side affect of this rebuild is audio just started magically working again once I installed the OS! This unit has come up very good. It runs (relatively) cool and chugs along just fine with 512MB of RAM on the old 20GB 4200rpm spinner. Mac OS 9 is very usable and with 16MB VRAM in OS X, we get Quartz Extreme support, which is a big step up from the original Mercury series, which had 8MB VRAM.

This Mac suffered from a non-responsive FireWire port before all my FireWire Woes. Perhaps once I begin resolving some of the other Mac's Firewire troubles I can swing back around to this one and get that last element working again.

After working on the Onyx series, I have found great appreciation for the design. I can see how it is a clear cross section of the Mercury and the DVI series. Apple did well to expand upon the internal design without changing much externally or even requiring major internal changes.

I'd give this repair an 8/10 overall (pending a potential FireWire fix)
 

jay7201

macrumors newbie
May 18, 2021
1
0
Continuing on from the dismantling of the display assemblies (above), I now have the opportunity to replace a failed backlight in the unit #5 / #9 combo Titanium. The idea is to remove the failed CCFL tube, install a new one and re-assemble / glue together the display assembly.

Here we go!

View attachment 1729797
1. Now that I have the LCD panel removed, I start unscrewing the panel's steel frame, to get at the backlight channel.

View attachment 1729798
2. The backlight is safely removed from the LCD panel.

View attachment 1729799
3. Here is the obvious reason for the panel's failure. The fragile glass of the CCFL tube has cracked and tiny shards of glass fell out..

View attachment 1729800
4. Peeling back the rubber end-caps, I can see the solder connection to detach and then re-connect to a new tube.

View attachment 1729801
5. Here are my new backlight tubes, ready to fit into my PowerBook G4 15.2-inch panels. I bought a pack of 10x 327mm x 2mm CCFL tubes, sealed up in a 25mm off-cut of pvc pipe, from China for about $20 inc shipping. This is the first one I'll be using from the pack, so I'm not sure what to expect in terms of warmth / white balance.

View attachment 1729802
6. With the soldering iron tip hot, tinned and ready. A quick application of heat easily disconnects the wiring from the tube.

View attachment 1729803
7. The existing cable connects easily to the new tube with a touch of solder.

View attachment 1729804
8. And then again on the other side. The rubber end caps were simply peeled back during the soldering and will then slide forward into position.

View attachment 1729805
9. With the inverter attached to the logic board and the CCFL tube, I then plug in the 65w power supply to the Onyx board and manually short the power button switch (J21) to power on the board and backlight.

View attachment 1729806
10. The new backlight fires up as expected after POST and is a bright, cool, white.

View attachment 1729807
11. Here I begin seating the new tube into the reflective channel.

View attachment 1729809
12. The neutral (white) wire runs parallel along the front of the channel and meets the pink active wire to run through a tiny clip at the lower right of the LCD panel.

View attachment 1729810
13. This bar locks the backlight channel into place.

View attachment 1729811
14. I then screw the locking bar down.

View attachment 1729812
15. The inverter wiring is then taped back down in order to fit into the rear display assembly.

View attachment 1729813
16. With the LCD panel re-assembled and connected to the inverter, I power on the logic board to test that the backlight delivers across the panel.

View attachment 1729814
17. There is a dark spot in the center of the panel... At this stage I dismantled things again to reseat the backlight channel. When I pulled it out I could see a portion of the reflective material inside the channel was folded over itself, so I was able to gently pry it back out.

View attachment 1729815
18. After re-assembling the LCD panel, I connect in the LVDS cable in the rear of the display housing.

View attachment 1729816
19. And replaced the white tape holding the inverter wiring against the bottom of the panel with some fresh Kapton. The wires are then guided into the gray plastic channel at the hinge here.

View attachment 1729817
20. Inside the panel, there are two rubber stoppers propping the LCD panel up to give clearance for the sleep indicator light board here in the center.

View attachment 1729818
21. I tried all kinds of things including gluing these rubber pads down, but could not convince the panel to sit flush with these rubber pads in place. So, I decided to remove them completely and insulate the sleep indicator light board with a little more Kapton tape.

View attachment 1729819
22. With the panel fitted back into the rear-housing, I connect the LVDS, inverter and jump start the logic board. The backlight distribution is even and we get a flashing System Folder icon as expected. We have a winner!

View attachment 1729820
23. The final stage is to glue the front bezel down. I mixed up some 2-pack epoxy and ran a light bead of glue along the top, left and right inner edges of the front bezel, then a light bead along the front lower edge. Before re-attaching, I prepared a number of small strips of tape to securely "clamp" the bezel down to aid the glue in making a solid contact.

View attachment 1729821
24. I ran a series of strips of tape to hold the front bezel down onto the LCD panel while the glue dries. Don't glue onto the rounded cream/white painted area. I found out the hard way that the paint easily peels off...

View attachment 1729822
25. Despite a small amount of warping of the aluminum in the removal process, I was satisfied with the end result. It all seated back down as expected. All seams are acceptable. :)

I then left the glue to dry overnight while taped up and removed the tape in the morning.

The display panel is now ready to fit. But first up, I'll repeat the process of gluing things together with the 2nd display assembly and replace a broken hinge from spare parts.

I'll then have two good condition display assemblies ready to install. One for the 550MHz Onyx (#5 / #9 combo) and one for the 667MHz DVI (unit #1), which should be yet another good condition rebuild.

Next up, I'll continue to rebuild this Onyx into a functional TiBook ...
how did you glue the bezel and will double sided tape work instead of epoxy and maybe if I can find someone to epoxy my display bezel back on
 

Macbookprodude

Suspended
Jan 1, 2018
3,306
895
I took photos of the final repaired LCD in Titanium #9 (Onyx 550MHz) during the week. :)

View attachment 1732535
1. All back together again and a fresh copy of Tiger installed. Against a light background there is a slight stage-lighting effect around the center where the inner reflective material inside the backlight channel was slightly folded back over itself. I tried to fix this, but could only do so much.

View attachment 1732537
2. It's bright! This is now the brightest Titanium display I have.

View attachment 1732538
3. Mac OS 9 runs real nice on this machine...

View attachment 1732536
4. Bright, beautiful and vibrant color returns to this Titanium!

One (very) happy side affect of this rebuild is audio just started magically working again once I installed the OS! This unit has come up very good. It runs (relatively) cool and chugs along just fine with 512MB of RAM on the old 20GB 4200rpm spinner. Mac OS 9 is very usable and with 16MB VRAM in OS X, we get Quartz Extreme support, which is a big step up from the original Mercury series, which had 8MB VRAM.

This Mac suffered from a non-responsive FireWire port before all my FireWire Woes. Perhaps once I begin resolving some of the other Mac's Firewire troubles I can swing back around to this one and get that last element working again.

After working on the Onyx series, I have found great appreciation for the design. I can see how it is a clear cross section of the Mercury and the DVI series. Apple did well to expand upon the internal design without changing much externally or even requiring major internal changes.

I'd give this repair an 8/10 overall (pending a potential FireWire fix)
Hi, speaking of ONYX, what is the disc set for this ? I was dispatched here by Macintosh garden to try and find the disk set for the 550/667 mhz Onyx version of the PB G4 Titanium. Any help would be appreciated, so I can up load it to the garden.
 

man132

macrumors newbie
Jun 19, 2021
19
8
Indonesia
I just got myself a dead PowerBook Titanium G4 that had dead HDD, after HDD replacement I able to power it on, but unfortunately it has broken display, I will try to dissasemble the display panel to clean whether it has dirt or something that I dont know yet.. thank you @AphoticD for the guide in display teardown
 

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ww2_1943

macrumors 6502
Nov 25, 2021
316
209
North NJ
Continuing on from the dismantling of the display assemblies (above), I now have the opportunity to replace a failed backlight in the unit #5 / #9 combo Titanium. The idea is to remove the failed CCFL tube, install a new one and re-assemble / glue together the display assembly.

Here we go!
Wow! I have a feeling I the back light will have to be replaced on my Pismo at some point. Seeing this, I don't know if I can do it! Maybe it is all about patience.

I also have a silly idea to use a Lombard/Pismo case to build a "modern" computer using a donor Macbook. My main limitation will be I don't know how to solder and that is probably not the best project to learn on!
 
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