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You are here: MacNN Forums > Enthusiast Zone > Classic Macs and Mac OS > SCSI in PowerMac 5500

SCSI in PowerMac 5500
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Grizzled Veteran
Join Date: Nov 2000
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Aug 11, 2001, 04:22 AM
What type scsi cdrom is in the powermac 5500?. I would like to put a cdrw in mine and don't know what type scsi drive to get
Senior User
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Aug 11, 2001, 09:20 AM
Apple's internal CD-ROMs used standard 50-pin SCSI ribbon cables. I think most of their drives were manufactured by Sony. Any internal SCSI CD burner should fit fine. The only issue you may need to deal with is heat. An internal burner is hot, plus the monitor directly above it in the all-in-one design of the 5500 doesn't give it a lot of room to vent.

In my opinion, you'd be better off adding a FireWire card to the PCI slot and getting a FireWire burner. That way, you save heat, which makes the drive last longer, you can do CD to CD burning since your internal is still there, and you can move the burner to any new machine you buy down the road because FireWire will be in any new machine, SCSI won't be.
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Aug 11, 2001, 10:56 AM
You may want to consider getting an external SCSI burner. You'll have to stick to slower speeds, but that may be a cheap alternative.

As for Firewire cards, you'll have to be very choosey which one you get. Most cards WILL NOT work with the 5400/5500/6400/6500 machines, since the PCI slot doesn't have enough internal power (or some other issue, I don't remember -- maybe it's a nonstandard early PCI or something). The Sonnet USB/Firewire card is supposed to work, with OS 9.0 or later I think. Supposedly, any OHCI-supporting card will work with the Apple Firewire drivers in 8.6 and up, but I think there's a power issue. That may not be a problem if you get Firewire only, and leave out the USB.

There are a bunch of posts over at XLR8YOURMAC.com about this, you should search through them and see what you can find.

Most importantly, please report back and let us know what you find out. Good luck -- I was working on my 5400/200 last night, so I'm eager to know what you end up doing.
He can be fixed -- you can't.
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Aug 11, 2001, 08:16 PM
An external SCSI is a fine solution -- you can save a few bucks by getting an internal SCSI and popping it into a cheap external case (Ubid has external cases with SCSI cables that have been selling for under $20 at auction). There's no concern about "slow speeds" with SCSI because there's no burner in existence that will outpace SCSI's bandwidth -- Firewire burners aren't faster, they're just more convenient for people who have FireWire but not SCSI.
Clinically Insane
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Aug 11, 2001, 10:31 PM
It all depends on the type of SCSI in question...

I have a Yamaha CRW8424SX-VK, 8*4*24, which used to be hooked up to the 5500; it worked fine.
Its now hooked up to the G4 via an Adaptec 2906 SCSI card.

Whether FireWire or SCSI, they'll all work fine. SCSI rocks.
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Aug 16, 2001, 03:17 AM
I have to agree with Cipher13. Use your existing SCSI. No need to complicate your system with adding cards, drivers for those cards and then adding a drive that may need drivers of its own. It will become a real rat's nest of extensions and dependancies. Rember the KISS method of computer upgrading.

The combined cost of a firewire card and firewire burner will be the same as for a single SCSI burner, but the SCSI burner will just work better, out of the box.

Yes Cipher, SCSI still rocks, iKeven please go SCSI external. You will be happier with it (especially the ability to direct copy CDs, you can't do that if you only have one CD drive).
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