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Mac Quadra 840AV

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Hi newbie here. I have a few vintage computers, Amigas mostly, but I never owned a Mac before and don't know much about them and I found a Quadra 840AV and I could use some advice. I don't have an Apple monitor or any other accessories just the tower.

Can anyone point me towards any paperwork for this i.e. a manual.

There seems to be some life in it. When I power it on, it immediately makes a "chime" sound from the internal speaker - is this a good sign? The PSU fan runs and I can hear the hard disk spinning (but not seeking I don't think). At one point it seemed to go through a boot sequence and then made two beeps - what does that mean? It is not doing that any more.

What do I need to connect it to a TV or VGA monitor? I see there are adapters that convert the DB15 video out to HD15 VGA e.g.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/390558193126

Will these work with a modern LCD monitor?

I connected the yellow phono socket marked "out" to a TV composite input but I didn't get a picture - should I?
 

ropersonline

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Can anyone point me towards any paperwork for this i.e. a manual.

http://tim.id.au/laptops/apple/legacy/quadra_840av.pdf

There seems to be some life in it. When I power it on, it immediately makes a "chime" sound from the internal speaker - is this a good sign?

Yes. It's the Mac equivalent to the BIOS beep most PC's used to make (some still do) when booting up.

The PSU fan runs and I can hear the hard disk spinning (but not seeking I don't think). At one point it seemed to go through a boot sequence and then made two beeps - what does that mean? It is not doing that any more.

Could be some extensions making noises. Could be modal error dialogs. Not sure w/o a look at the screen.

What do I need to connect it to a TV or VGA monitor? I see there are adapters that convert the DB15 video out to HD15 VGA e.g.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/390558193126

Will these work with a modern LCD monitor?

At risk of stating the obvious: The monitor needs to be analog RGB/VGA-compatible for that adapter to work. It can't be digital-ONLY. What inputs does the monitor have?
 

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Thanks for the reply, I do have an old LCD monitor with a VGA input, but I'm not using it at the moment, just the composite out.
I read somewhere that a dead PRAM battery might be the cause of no video so I'll try replacing that.
 

ClassicHasClass

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That's exactly what I was going to suggest. The Q840AV is a nice Mac. It won't run A/UX -- the Q800 was the last model that could -- but it's definitely the brawniest 68K Mac, at least out of the box. Too bad so little made use of the DSPs.
 

zackl

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That is also one of the hardest to find 68k macs in good condition and fetches a good price - if you're interested in selling drop me a line!
 

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I replaced the PRAM battery and made a DB15 to VGA cable and I got a picture out of it. I need to resolder the cable as the blue drive lead broke off. Shows a disk with a flashing question mark on it.
 

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ClassicHasClass

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It's saying it can't find a bootable volume. Assuming the floppy drive is in working order, you could make a Disk Tools image on another computer, boot the Q840AV with it, and see what you can see. The Q840AV can boot 7.1 with the appropriate System Enabler but you'll probably find it easier to just make a 7.5 Disk Tools floppy and there should be legally available disk images of this for download.
 

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Unfortunately the floppy drive is missing. Can it be booted from the CD-ROM?
 
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olePigeon

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Yes, if the CD is made bootable. You power on the machine while holding down the C key until you see it boot.

You can also boot off any external SCSI drive. Anything from a HDD to a Zip or Jaz drive.
 

gsteemso

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“While holding C” may be a touch optimistic. That particular feature was added relatively late in the existence of Macs and I have no idea which if any 68K era machines (or discs published for them, as I believe it was implemented as a feature of the disk driver on the CD) would support that. More generally, if there’s no other bootable drive or partition attached, the machine should boot from a suitable CD without user intervention; on the other hand, if there is a boot disk in place which you want to bypass, holding SCOD (Shift+Command+Option+Delete — note this is normal delete, labelled backspace on some keyboards, and not forward delete) will cause the Mac to skip the drive it expects to boot from and root through the usual suspects for a different one.

The order the boot-disk search is carried out in is somewhat well-documented, and looks something like this:
0) If certain keys are held down and the machine is one of the rare few models with a boot disk image in ROM, use that
1) Floppy drives, in ascending numerical order
2) SCSI drives, one bus at a time (I think if more than one bus is present the order is: built-in external, built-in internal, NuBus — in ascending slot-number order, I _think_), and on each bus, every SCSI ID number from highest to lowest is checked. For most Macs this means IDs from 6 down to zero are examined on each bus (7 is usually the Mac itself’s SCSI controller; 6 is used for a 68k PowerBook in target disk mode, and internal drives are usually set sequentially starting at zero so this search finds everything else first). Later versions of SCSI allowed addresses up to 15, and also multiple “Logical Unit Numbers” (LUNs) per addressed device. I don’t know if any 68k Mac ever supported those features out of the box though.
 

commodorejohn

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Depending on where you're located, you could just find someone else with an 040 Mac and mail them a hard disk to drop a universal install of 8.1 on.
 

olePigeon

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What bout holding down the Mouse Button during boot, then inserting a CD-ROM?

Should still work, shouldn't it?
 

GiGaBiTe

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“While holding C” may be a touch optimistic. That particular feature was added relatively late in the existence of Macs and I have no idea which if any 68K era machines (or discs published for them, as I believe it was implemented as a feature of the disk driver on the CD) would support that.

I've had various 680x0 Macs over the years and most of them supported booting off a CD if the CD-ROM drive has an Apple ROM (ie. CD-ROM drives manufactured to Apple specs.) Generic CD-ROM drives aren't bootable on 68k Macs in my experience, and are still iffy on PowerPC machines as well.

Depending on where you're located, you could just find someone else with an 040 Mac and mail them a hard disk to drop a universal install of 8.1 on.

I have Mac OS 8.0 install media and a few machines that I could install with. The Mac OS 8.1 update is freely available so that could be installed by the owner later.
 
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