A bunch of random stuff...
probably a lot of it outdated

Classic Apple Macintosh Computer Stuff

Getting to enjoy some nostalgia, I've been collecting vintage classic Apple Macintosh computers.

Cube Bench Classic

When I was using Macintosh computers growing up I was only vaguely aware of programming, and by the time I got into programming I was using the PC more and it was easy to get a free Basic interpreter up and running, then Java, that I never really thought about Mac programming. That's changed this year and I've spent a bunch of time working on making some cubes bounce on screen and counting how fast they go as a tool to get a better understanding of the performance differences between Macs and what those differences means. So, I fired up Symantec C++ and have written a C++ benchmark I'm calling Cube Bench Classic. I got going reusing a bit of code from an earlier project as a starting point, and I find it really interesting how modern C++ written for modern GCC has run just fine. It's also been really interesting the bits that haven't worked so well, heh. Stay tuned for updates.

Macintosh SE

When growing up our family got a Macintosh SE from a thrift store after our 10-year old Macintosh Plus became unreliable. At some point we moved and had to get rid of the SE, but not before I got to play around disassembling it and saving the logic board. I continued to hold onto that board for another 20-something years and recently retrieved it from my parent's house Summer 2022 and decided to get it working.

Miracle of miracles, the 34 year old PRAM battery hadn't leaked. Even better, I was amazed when I heard signs of life after creating an ATX power supply adapter.

Even with power I still had a big issue in that a certain essential component in the CRT was missing. How was I going to see anything? So I embarked on one of my most ambitious projects - to read the video signal with RP2040 PIO and convert it to VGA. Fortunately I worked out how to do it. Source code here.

With the RADIUS accelerator the SE has got it's been pretty fun to get back to this exact some computer I used all those years ago and learn some Mac programming.

Performa 450

Spring 2023 I got a Performa 450 with the intention of playing through Escape Velocity: Override. While I haven't managed to play yet, I have at least managed a recapping exercise.

Macintosh LC

Part of what got me thinking about old Macs again was finding out about how the game is currently being ported to modern systems under the title of Cosmic Frontier. I thought an interesting project could be to get an LC and stick a mini PC inside of it for playing on. That plan backfired when the cheap LC I got turned out to be a near pristine in box example. So instead I just did the usual recapping, saved the power supply, and started a collection.

Macintosh LC II

With a good chunk of the LC systems already in my collection, it was only a matter of time before I found an LC II in reasonable condition and price in Spring 2024.

Macintosh LC 475

I have an LC 475 as well as of Spring 2024. It suffers from quiet speaker audio and I thought it might be repairable. Not an easy fix of just replacing the capacitors and a very warm to the touch amplifier chip sadly. Fortunately however the speaker jack continues to work just fine.

Apple CD 300

Winter 2023 I felt like I might be nostalgic for physical media and secured an Apple CD 300. Turns out, they also suffer from leaking capacitors. Fortunately these are all the same sort of values found in the LC-class machines. There are just a few in awkward spaces.