Feeds

The Mac that saved Apple (and Steve Jobs)

Deep inside the Bondi Blue

Security for virtualized datacentres

The mysterious mezzanine

Soon after the iMac shipped, enterprising geeks took theirs apart to find out what that plate below the port array was hiding, and were surprised to find that on the underside of the logic board there was a connecter labeled "Mezzanine" that Apple hadn't trumpeted in its promo materials or spec sheets.

The slot turned out to be a proprietary PCI connector — the iMac's Motorola XPC106 bridge chip (aka "Grackle") supports PCI. Its usage by Apple was, to my knowledge, never officially confirmed, but the word on the street is that Apple techs used it to test, monitor, and diagnose the logic board and other system functions.

Bondi Blue Rev. B iMac - mezzanine slot

This slot has absolutely nothing to do with Nicholson Baker's novel (click to enlarge)

A PCI slot in an otherwise expansion-hobbled iMac begged for third-party devices to be plugged into it — but both the cramped location of the slot and its access difficulty for the average user kept the upgrade aftermarket small.

That said, the now-defunct Formac* made a TV tuner–SCSI adapter mashup called the iProTVRAID that fit into the slot. Another now-defunct outfit, Micro Conversions, was said to have announced a mezzanine slot version of its Game Wizard 3DFX VooDoo graphics card, though I've been unable to find out if that card ever shipped.

Nestled next to the mezzanine slot on the bottom of the logic board, by the way, lived the 56Kbps modem I mentioned earlier, powered by a Rockwell L2800-38 and R6764-62 chip pairing.

Bondi Blue Rev. B iMac - modem card

Trust me: there was a time when 56Kbps felt mighty, mighty fast (click to enlarge)

When stripped of the daughter card and its cage, plus the modem, the Bondi Blue iMac's logicboard is a clean design with no "whoops" do-over traces — at least none that I could spot.

Bondi Blue Rev. B iMac - logicboard, top

The top of the Bondi Blue iMac's logic board, with the ATI Rage Pro to the left of center (click to enlarge)

Bondi Blue Rev. B iMac - logic board, bottom

The bottom of the logic board, with the mezzanine slot to the right of center (click to enlarge)

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD to DIE, and this is WHY
Apple, er, couldn’t get the parts for HDD models
Apple spent just ONE DOLLAR beefing up the latest iPad Air 2
New iPads look a lot like the old one. There's a reason for that
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring
Back to driving's basics with a joyously legal high
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.