Powerbook G3 Pismo

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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Lincolnshire, UK
I've finally got my hands on a Powerbook G3 Pismo at a decent price - it's the 400Mhz model, 576MB RAM, 40GB drive, Airport and best of all, a battery with 4 hours life in it!
I'm amazed how capable it is - that 1MB L2 cache really makes a difference, it's good for Spotify, online radio, DVDs and as shown here, Youtube streaming and movie playback via Mplayer....had to show The Matrix, as it's of the G3's era :)

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Dronecatcher

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Original poster
Jun 17, 2014
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Lincolnshire, UK
Oh my goodness! I came over all teary with a huge nostalgia overload. :)

I have so many fond memories of using that model…

Did you also get the Aluminium carry case they came with?
It's certainly a workhorse model (or rather would have been in it's day) with all of it's I/O and modular options.
No, didn't come with a case, don't think I've even seen the Aluminium one you refer to.
 
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YYsMD

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Apr 25, 2017
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Excellent machine, mine's my go-to old Laptop although it has problems booting. The little reset switch round the back has to be held down for a bit before it will chime. Probably a PRAM issue, does this one here need 'encouragement' to start up?
 

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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Lincolnshire, UK
Excellent machine, mine's my go-to old Laptop although it has problems booting. The little reset switch round the back has to be held down for a bit before it will chime. Probably a PRAM issue, does this one here need 'encouragement' to start up?
No, it boots fine so far and the PRAM battery appears fine at the moment.
 

arkitect

macrumors 603
Sep 5, 2005
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Bath, United Kingdom
Nice find! This encourages me to give my own Pismo an airing, and make a few researches for a similar case (love it) this side of the pond.
Not unlike the G4 TiBook, with their keyboards, these Pismo's are sheer delight to type on.
Yes. They were really great to type on. Just the right balance in softness, tactile feedback; and sound.
 

bobesch

macrumors 65816
Oct 21, 2015
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Kiel, Germany
I've finally got my hands on a Powerbook G3 Pismo at a decent price - it's the 400Mhz model, 576MB RAM, 40GB drive, Airport and best of all, a battery with 4 hours life in it!
I'm amazed how capable it is - that 1MB L2 cache really makes a difference, it's good for Spotify, online radio, DVDs and as shown here, Youtube streaming and movie playback via Mplayer....had to show The Matrix, as it's of the G3's era :)
Wow, the Pismo is in a great shape - congrats!
As for me, I do not fancy the G3-Powerbook-series, since the books remind me to my 2003 Acer Travelmate 800, which design had been "borrowed" from those G3 Powerbooks (4 years later haha).

When it comes to the replacement of the HDD, all those old PPC-books sport a crazy design, since you nearly have to dismantle the whole unit...
- for the G3 Powerbooks you have to repaste the CPU
- with the Clamshell one has even to remove the screen in order to keep all parts and the magnetic-shield without damage
- the white G3/G4 iBooks have to be completely opened from bottom and top-side, with dozens of screws to be removed
- the 12" G4 Powerbook is also a hassle.
Only on the 15/17" Powerbooks it's likewise easy to get access to the hard drive but one has to be careful no to break fragile parts off the edge of the top-case.

Compared to that, there only had to be two screws to get access to my Travelmates hard drive. Unfortunately it does not run any OS X ... so all lost effort :D
So watering the thorns for the blooming rose ...

For the reason of easy accessibility of drive and other parts my favorite intel-book still is the 13" MacBook alu from late 2008 ...
[doublepost=1493482060][/doublepost]
Nice find! This encourages me to give my own Pismo an airing, and make a few researches for a similar case (love it) this side of the pond.
Not unlike the G4 TiBook, with their keyboards, these Pismo's are sheer delight to type on.
Do you need some replacement-keys or spare parts for your Pismo. I bought a tile of dismantled parts only in order to get the original Panther Disks that came with the parts ...
But AFAIK a QUERTZ-keyboard!? (I need to have a look at the attic)
 
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Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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When it comes to the replacement of the HDD, all those old PPC-books sport a crazy design, since you nearly have to dismantle the whole unit...
I think the Powerbook G3 is so simple for access - lift the keyboard and Airport, RAM, PRAM battery and HD are all there with a few screws to undo, no having to remove screws front, back and sides, prize open the case, pop off fragile motherboard connectors etc
 

bobesch

macrumors 65816
Oct 21, 2015
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Kiel, Germany
I think the Powerbook G3 is so simple for access - lift the keyboard and Airport, RAM, PRAM battery and HD are all there with a few screws to undo, no having to remove screws front, back and sides, prize open the case, pop off fragile motherboard connectors etc
The guy, who wrote the guide for HDD-replacement removed the CPU-board in order to replace the drive, which makes it necessary to replace the thermal paste...
Obviously that seems to be not necessary, as some comments do mention (I've seen that a few minutes ago, when re-reading the ifixit-guide...)
Anyway, the Pismo looks pretty tidy under the hood!
 
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bobesch

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Oct 21, 2015
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Kiel, Germany
Thanks :) Wish I'd found the Mplayer stdin function earlier!
I'm really confused about different versions of Mplayer app beeing around.
Could you tell more about you secrets about "Mplayer" and "stdin function"?
... and I must not look to that nice Pismo-picture to often - otherwise I fear to be tempted at least ;)
 

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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Lincolnshire, UK
I'm really confused about different versions of Mplayer app beeing around.
Could you tell more about you secrets about "Mplayer" and "stdin function"?
... and I must not look to that nice Pismo-picture to often - otherwise I fear to be tempted at least ;)
As far as I know. there are 2 versions to choose from (as included in my TonVid archive) - the svn version is more contemporary but can be problematic, hence you have to try what works best on your machine. As Mplayer isn't a clickable app, it has to be invoked by another app/script/Terminal command but that's what makes it more efficient. Stdin is one of the many (and there are lots) command line options for youtube-dl which is applicable to compatible players, in this case, directing a video stream from Youtube (via youtube-dl) into Mplayer.
I can't elaborate as I'm not a programmer - I just learn what I need to know to get something to work :)
 
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bobesch

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Oct 21, 2015
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As far as I know. there are 2 versions to choose from (as included in my TonVid archive) - the svn version is more contemporary but can be problematic, hence you have to try what works best on your machine. As Mplayer isn't a clickable app, it has to be invoked by another app/script/Terminal command but that's what makes it more efficient. Stdin is one of the many (and there are lots) command line options for youtube-dl which is applicable to compatible players, in this case, directing a video stream from Youtube (via youtube-dl) into Mplayer.
I can't elaborate as I'm not a programmer - I just learn what I need to know to get something to work :)
Thanks! After posting my question I went through the list of postings this nice morning and finally found your thread about all the stuff about video-streaming. Completely forgot about it...
Now I've bookmarked the thread not to forget it and gonna give it a try on my Clamshell today or tomorrow! :)