Welcome to the World of the Power Colo(u)r Classic

Editor's note: This is a complete mirror of Stuart Bell's original Power Colo(u)r Classic site, last updated in 2002. Since it went offline from its original host, many other Color Classic-related sites have also moved, gone offline entirely, or individuals' e-mail addresses have changed. Links and e-mail addresses have been left unchanged so as to best preserve Stuart's site in its original form.

Welcome to the world of the

Presented by Stuart Bell (stuartsmac at dsl dot pipex dot com)
Photo: John W Johnson of J-eNGINE Photography - keoni at flash.net


Chris Lawson and the pickle have produced a

ColourClassic Upgrade


Everything you ever wanted to know about upgrading Colo(u)r Classics

There's also a

Colo(u)r Classic Forum

where you can ask questions and, we hope, get answers about anything to do with Colo(u)r Classics: Using, repairing, upgrading.

With acknowledgment to 'Takky' who documents the wiring and principles of the Power Color Classic on his web site, and to my good friend Richard Stearn, electronics engineer and Unix guru, who did all the nasty bits of the project for me - like the wiring of the analogue board connector - and then solved the problem of the auto-powering-down CC/.5400 when we seemed to have a failed project on our hands.

All information is believed correct, but no responsibility whatsoever can be accepted for any consequences arising from your reading of this site. All work is done at owner's risk. Particularly in the region of the CRT and analogue circuitry, potentially lethal voltages may be present, even when the Colour Classic is disconnected from the mains supply.


Welcome to the crazy world of the Power Colour Classic; a world in which people cram ever greater levels of power and functionality into the humble Apple Mac computer known as the 'Colour Classic'. They all start life as a low-powered 68030-based compact Mac. How they end up is limited only by peoples' imagination and skill.

This site amplifies the constructional details given by 'Takky' - the two-man team which devised the whole idea of the 'Power Colour Classic'.

But before reading on, perhaps you'd like to explore a little more of this crazy world?

If so, make a visit to the amazing site of:

Definition: A Power Colour Classic is an Apple Macintosh Colour Classic computer, normally powered by a 16Mhz 68030 CPU, modified to use a logic board which contains a microprocessor from the 'Power PC' range of RISC processors, typically a 603e device.

All trademarks, registered trademarks etc. etc. acknowledged.

Method and wiring (c) The Club for Creating the Strongest Color Classic.

This text and photographs (c) Stuart A Bell 1999, 2000,  2001 & 2002.


Colour Classic

The main focus of this site is the Power Colour Classic, and the aim is to provide detailed constructional procedures and advice to accompany the descriptions offered by 'Takky', originators of the PCC concept.

But there are other interesting things that you can do with a Colour Classic.

Some people have already managed to fit a CD ROM drive inside a CC chassis, but the advent of slot-load CD drives makes it possible with only minimal alterations to the front of the CC - simply widening the existing floppy disc slot: 'CD in CC' describes this project. (photo left)

The Club for Creating the Strongest Colour Classic in Japan also documented what they call 'Mystic' - the putting of the logic board from a Mac LC575 into a CC, greatly increasing its power. Some people get confused about the various Mac OS alternatives with that configuration: 'Mystic Options' explains all.

Alexey Danilchenko has modified the analogue board of his CC to produce stereo output: 'Going Stereo' contains his account.

Storing and displaying Compact Macs can be a problem. especially if you want things to look reasonable. The Swedish furniture company IKEA make a storage unit called 'Trofast' which displays 6 compact macs in a small space in an attractive manner.

While I've not managed to squeeze a G3 upgrade card into a PowerCC equipped with a 6400 or 6500 series logic board, Kevin (kevt at tesco dot net) has. 'G3 Power' shows how he did it.

Alexey Danilchenko has modified his CC to accept a MO drive in place of the floppy. 'MO Drive' contains his account.

Scott Johnston has turned his PowerCC into a TV, using the Apple TV Card. Checkout 'TV in PCC' to see how he did it.

Finally, if you've been confused about the issue of using IDE drives with a PowerColo(u)r Classic, Alexey Danilchenko has provided the material for a definitive page about the 'IDE Question".


SE/30 with internal CD

Not strictly speaking part of the Colour Classic Compendium, since it's nothing to do with a CC, but this little project has been to put a CD drive inside an SE/30. As I note on my 'CD in CC' page, this has been done before, but often at the cost of the classic SE 'look'. I've tried to preserve as much as possible of that much-loved 'face' in my adaptation: SE30CD.

SE/30 with 68040 and 640 x 480 grey-scale display.

Very much a project under construction, what started out as a 'Poor Man's Grey Scale Project' has become a little more complex, featuring an LC475 logic board and the electronics of a 12" mono display. Check out the progress of my SE/475 project.

Links to other
Colour Classic sites:

Screen modification instructions

Eric Neuman has done a brilliant "re-translation" of the Japansese site which explains how to do the 'Hi-Resolution' resolution upgrade' to Colour Classics, producing a 640 x 480 display which is far more usable than the standard 512 x 384, and which allows far more software to run.

He's also taken a large number of very clear and helpful photographs to illustrate the process.

The CC community has needed this for a long time.

Check out: http://www.geocities.com/edakoda

VGA modification in English

Chris Lawson has produced the first documentation in English of the CC 'VGA' screen modification. This produces a 640 x 480 screen refreshed at 60Hz rather than the High-Res modiification's 67Hz. The voltages required on the analogue board are rather lower, which should make for longer component life.

Check out Chris Lawson's VGA page.

Note: this will not work with standard CC logic boards, but is strongly recommended for all other Colour Classics.

PCC with full 6500 chassis


John Stocker has taken the creation of the Power Colour Classic to new heights. He's on his third conversion at the moment, and his piece de resistance is the putting of a full 6500-style chassis in a CC. Check out http://glowsoft.com/sfs/pcc/ .

G4 in CC

The mac512 site now features a very interesting Colour Classic section. Check out http://www.mac512.com/cclassic.htm as the portal to this area.

At http://www.mac512.com/ccapart.htmare great CC take-apart instructions.

However, the highlight of the site is http://www.mac512.com/ccpmg4.htm where's there's a detailed account of how the author, G Younk, managed to put the logic board from a G4 cube, plus the 'innards' of a POS terminal with 10" colour CRT into a CC case, thus achieving what must surely be the fastest Colour Classic ever made. Unless you know better. . . .

Beautiful craftsmanship - high powered machines!

For a some wonderful engineering with Mystics and PowerColourClassics, take a look at MISUTHiKU's superb site. Just click the image on the right


What's the rest of this site all about, then?

Click on this Colour Classic for full constructional details of the

Power Colour Classic



It's based on one assumption and one fact.

The assumption is that the original Mac form factor - the 'all-in-one' Mac with a built-in 9" or 10" screen in a box little more than a foot (30cm) in any direction, and weighing no more than about 20lbs (10kg) is the definitive, 'proper', 'cutest', incarnation of the whole idea of the Apple Macintosh computer. In some ways, the iMac recaptures that concept, but at 45lbs it's hardly luggable, and whilst it may be 'cool', it isn't cute!

The fact is that the original Mac Colour Classic which, with its later variant, the Colour Classic II, (a faster machine sold only in Asia and a few other markets), is the only compact Mac to have a colour screen, was slow in comparison with other Macs when it was first available, and is now far too under-powered to be a usable computer for use with graphics and web-browsing applications which most users in the third millennium want to run. A 16MHz 68030 simply can't hack it in today's world, unless you stick to word processing, email and the like. The 10Mb RAM limit, caused by the use of the Mac LCII architecture years after the SE/30 offered a far greater capacity is also a severe constraint. But fear not, a Power Colour Classicis 15 to 50 times more powerful, in terms of CPU performance, than the original CC and offers RAM capabilities up to 136Mb.

So, fasten your seat-belts!

Click the CC to the left to see how to make a

Last modified 17th December 2002

Computer Type: 
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