RetroMacCast

Where great old Macs live again!

After selling my maxed out Wegener Media Super Pismo over a year ago, I immediately regretted it. Going even further retro, I picked up a PowerBook 3400c last year and tried to do a 'retro-project" by living with it for a year, but it was simply too slow and isolated (no USB, no printer drivers) to be productive.

So the prodigal has returned. I picked up another Pismo from eBay, this one a stock 500 mHz in pretty decent shape. However, it had been cobbled by some shadetree genius, and the processor card fried about a month later. Yesterday, a replacement 400 mHz daughter card arrived, and BONG, she fired right back up, albeit 25% slower than before. Still loveable, completely useful (as long as you're not a YouTube addict), and oh-so-sexy.

Of course, being the hoarder that I am, I've already purchased another Pismo, this one described as 'near mint' 500 mHz, with very low hours of use. Haven't decided whether I'll keep them both, but one will certainly stay.

This is by far the best laptop I've ever used, up to and including most of the current Intel aluminum bodies. The keyboard is so silky and responsive, with just enough throw and tactile response to remind you that you are actually typing words, I love going to the coffee shop and having other Mac users stop by and say - "Man, that's a sexy PowerBook - is that a new model?"

Sometimes I even say yes - it's a prototype - ha!

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Replies to This Discussion

The Pismo is the coolest Mac ever. I too, regret selling mine - I bought it new, and used it to drive a special scanning panoramic camera. I loved the modular bays - I would replace the optical drive with a second battery to double my battery life in the field.

I really wish I'd never sold it, but when you don't have a lot of money and need to buy new gear and software, you sell them while they still have value. The thought of keeping it as a "collectible" would never have occurred to me at the time!

If you do decide to part with your extra Pismo, drop me a line.
I am in complete agreement with you are the versatility, usability, and beauty of the Pismo. I love that I'm not limited in accessories, or connections. I have accessibility to floppies, super-floppies, zip drives, DVDs, USB, Firewire, Ethernet, Wifi, Modem, and two batteries! Wow! Oh yeah, and Super-Video Out!! And, it's such a joy to type with, Apple has never made a better keyboard or clicker! I have an aluminum G4, and it's cold, and uncomfortable compared to the Pismo. I will never give up my Pismo.

I also have two, one stock, and one with a processor upgrade card. My upgraded processor failed this week so I'm going to have to send it back in hopes it can be saved. I took the processor out of my other Pismo and installed it in my most used Pismo and she back! But, this really makes me aware that I do need to keep a processor card in reserve for that day when it has reached the end of processor life. That will be a sad, sad day.
I like the "It's a prototype," that's great!!! Maybe if enough people keep saying "We want that black, curvaceous Powerbook with the translucent bronze keyboard" they will bring back the design? Well, it was worth a wistful moment to daydream.
I know how you feel, I moved from a Pismo 500mhz to a 1 ghz Titanium, the "Ti" is fast and powerful but fragile, going back to the Pismo is like visiting with an old friend, solid, steady and sure. I have built a newer one (less cracks in the chassis) running 10.4, when I need a laptop while I am on the go, I take the Pismo, the "Ti" stays home, for its own safety.
I found a Pismo today at a local junk/salvage store, minus its memory, hard drive they wanted under $20 for it, good case, needed cleaning, it looked repairable, but I resisted, it is a 500 mhz, model.
FYI, if you want your Pismo to run faster, try finding 2, 256MB ram running 222, I tested this set up on a 400 mhz pismo against a pismo running 500mhz with 1 gb of ram, the 400 was a little faster opening apps, the 2 512mb ram I was using had a speed rating of 333.

I tried to copy you with a supped up Pismo with the G4 cpu from Wegener,  6 mo. later i am still waiting my order, no responses from Wegener, I hat getting burned, anyone know a better way to get back my money or get my order filled?

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