Old PM 6100 sound/memory problems


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 29, 2005
I had picked up and old Power Mac 6100 a few years ago from a school and have been using it ever since. For about the past year I have been using it to record notes I take on a voice recorder to burn to CD, in fact, aside from the occasional game that is the only use this computer gets.

This computer is running on OS 7.6.1 with 40MB of RAM and a 2GB hard drive. I could get a more detailed list of specifications if needed (I am not very familiar with configuration).

About a week ago I had noticed what appeared to be the PRAM battery's passing (about time too). All sorts of odd behavior had started such as the time change to 1956 and "out of memory" errors in SoundEdit and SoundApp despite the fact that only 25% of the RAM was in use. I bought a new PRAM battery and replaced it. The clock now lasts through a restart, so the battery is working. The odd behavior such as the "out of memory" errors did not end. Sound does not play at all also (except the "play-through" playback from the voice recorder).

I reset the PRAM to no avail. I have tried virtual memory, changing the memory allocation, disabling extensions, etc., but am open to suggestion. I am considering switching the RAM with some spares I have to check if the RAM is failing, but given the coincidental timing with the PRAM battery failure I doubt that is the problem. I also am considering a clean reinstall if that fails.

What would you all suggest? I would really prefer to keep using this computer. Should I just ditch this computer and figure out sound editing on my other computer?

Lord Blackadder

macrumors G5
May 7, 2004
Sod off
I dunno, there are a lot of variables to consider on this one....

First off, I have both a Quadra 610 and Powermac 6100 (they use the same form factor case). I've replaced the PRAM battery in both with an equivalent Radio Shack battery and had no trouble....due to the age of the machine, logic board trouble is a good possibility.

Try swapping out RAM, and make sure that the RAM is properly seated.

It might be a good idea to do a clean install, since you mention that booting without extensions didn't solve the problem...that probably rules out an extensions conflict. Install only the extensions you need to reduce the possibilities of a conflict.

You could always try a different PRAM battery...if a clean install doesn't help you may be looking at a logic board problem , though I'm far from an expert.