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PB G4 power adapters - the eBay jungle

Message #1 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Tim Hodgson

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

TimH
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Message #2 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Fri, 10 Jul 2009 12:36:04 +0100, Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

Yes, my 12"PB was running off a cheap (20quid, but it was several years ago) Chinese knockoff for ages.

If your local Apple dealer has old-style PSUs, they're more than likely willing to let you plug one in and see if that's the problem - if it's something that can be diagnosed directly like that.

Cheers - Jaimie

...most SF writers are small blokes; they spent a lot of time grubbing around on the floor for old SF mags, not stretching up to the top shelf for pornography... As an aside, Douglas Adams is quite tall. - Terry Pratchett

Message #3 - Posted 2009/07/10 - J. J. Lodder

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Where do you think the official Apple adaptors come from?

Jan

(who is happily using both an alternative model (without light) and a fake Apple one (with the light in the plug)

Message #4 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Jon B

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

You'll need something that can give the full 65w to the 15", the 45w chargers will rely on the battery giving some juice, which if you've got a battery problem it won't (the 15" won't start from a 45w charger without a partially charged battery in).

Jon B
Above email address IS valid.
<http://www.bramley-computers.co.uk/> Apple Laptop Repairs.

Message #5 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Tim Hodgson

Jon B wrote:

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

You'll need something that can give the full 65w to the 15", the 45w chargers will rely on the battery giving some juice, which if you've got a battery problem it won't (the 15" won't start from a 45w charger without a partially charged battery in).

Yes, these are all (claimed to be) 65w. I think I'll risk it... --
TimH
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Message #6 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Tim Hodgson

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

On Fri, 10 Jul 2009 12:36:04 +0100, Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

Yes, my 12"PB was running off a cheap (20quid, but it was several years ago) Chinese knockoff for ages.

If your local Apple dealer has old-style PSUs, they're more than likely willing to let you plug one in and see if that's the problem - if it's something that can be diagnosed directly like that.

It's more in the nature of intermittent erratic behaviour, so not really.

Anyway, sounds like an ebay cheapie is worth a shot, thanks.

TimH
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Message #7 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Steve Firth

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Anyway, sounds like an ebay cheapie is worth a shot, thanks.

I've not bought any G3 adapters via eBay. I have however purchased 2x MBP magsafe adapters, from China.

Either they are Apple manufacture or extremely good fakes for a fraction of the price charged by our local Apple store. Both have been fine (so far) and even if, like the original, they fail just out of warranty who cares? I can easily afford to buy one every year and it's still cheaper than buying one from Apple and having it last for five years.

Message #8 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Tim Hodgson

Steve Firth wrote:

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Anyway, sounds like an ebay cheapie is worth a shot, thanks.

I've not bought any G3 adapters via eBay. I have however purchased 2x MBP magsafe adapters, from China.

Either they are Apple manufacture or extremely good fakes for a fraction of the price charged by our local Apple store. Both have been fine (so far) and even if, like the original, they fail just out of warranty who cares? I can easily afford to buy one every year and it's still cheaper than buying one from Apple and having it last for five years.

In the end I've gone for one that doesn't attempt to look like the Apple item - it's just a brick. £11.99. Somehow I'm reassured that it's making no pretence about being the genuine article. And the dealer's feedback was good. (A disproportionate amount of neg. feedback for the various dealers was specifically for Powerbook G4 adapters, which was a little alarming.)

TimH
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Message #9 - Posted 2009/07/10 - gaz

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

I picked up a couple of generic magasafe chargers on ebay for macbooks so far very reliable, if they can manage a magsafe charger, i am sure they can manage the g4 connector.

Gaz

Message #10 - Posted 2009/07/10 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Fri, 10 Jul 2009 19:58:47 +0100, gaz wrote:

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

I picked up a couple of generic magasafe chargers on ebay for macbooks so far very reliable, if they can manage a magsafe charger, i am sure they can manage the g4 connector.

Quite possibly better than Apple did. My Apple 12"PB psu developed a wire fault at the (non) strain relief. My sister's 12" iBook is currently down and disabled due to the centre spike of the power plug having snapped off inside the socket. Poor girl's using Vista.

And that's not even mentioning the use of meshed shield rather than spiral wound in the cable.

Cheers - Jaimie

"It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong." - Voltaire,c18

Message #11 - Posted 2009/07/13 - Jon B

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

On Fri, 10 Jul 2009 19:58:47 +0100, gaz wrote:

Tim Hodgson wrote:

Just been looking for a replacement adapter for the (probably) faulty one on my old G4 Powerbook. eBay has all kinds of ludicrously cheap offers on new adapters - from £9 up - mostly from China/HK.

Does anyone have any experience of these? I wouldn't normally contemplate them except that I don't want to spend £30-40 on something that may not fix the problem.

I picked up a couple of generic magasafe chargers on ebay for macbooks so far very reliable, if they can manage a magsafe charger, i am sure they can manage the g4 connector.

Quite possibly better than Apple did. My Apple 12"PB psu developed a wire fault at the (non) strain relief. My sister's 12" iBook is currently down and disabled due to the centre spike of the power plug having snapped off inside the socket. Poor girl's using Vista.

I've got spare DC-in boards for these...

You can sometimes recover the pin out the DC-in board but if someone tries to put a new charger in usually they short out inside and ruin the old DC-in board.

Jon B
Above email address IS valid.
<http://www.bramley-computers.co.uk/> Apple Laptop Repairs.

Message #12 - Posted 2009/07/13 - T i m

On Mon, 13 Jul 2009 13:40:46 +0100, Jon B wrote:

Quite possibly better than Apple did. My Apple 12"PB psu developed a wire fault at the (non) strain relief. My sister's 12" iBook is currently down and disabled due to the centre spike of the power plug having snapped off inside the socket. Poor girl's using Vista.

I've got spare DC-in boards for these...

Oooh, not that I need one but I have always thought the power in area could be better (as in easier_to_repair than most of them are) but how much would one be (retail) may I ask please?

My mate runs a little PC shop and when confronted with a PC laptop with a damaged power connector he normally sends them elsewhere (it's generally just not cost effective on a less than new laptop these days).

You can sometimes recover the pin out the DC-in board but if someone tries to put a new charger in usually they short out inside and ruin the old DC-in board.

I've soldered the centre pin (generic machines of course) where it's simply become un crimped and if you can be asked to strip the laptop down (and some are worse than others) you can generally replace the socket for a couple of quid (and how I've come by at least a couple of machines).

Outside Magsafe (it looks a very good idea btw) I think there should be an externally accessible screw-in module that contains the DC connector and a spare should come free with every laptop. ;-)

T i m

Message #13 - Posted 2009/07/13 - Jon B

T i m wrote:

On Mon, 13 Jul 2009 13:40:46 +0100, Jon B wrote:

Quite possibly better than Apple did. My Apple 12"PB psu developed a wire fault at the (non) strain relief. My sister's 12" iBook is currently down and disabled due to the centre spike of the power plug having snapped off inside the socket. Poor girl's using Vista.

I've got spare DC-in boards for these...

Oooh, not that I need one but I have always thought the power in area could be better (as in easier_to_repair than most of them are) but how much would one be (retail) may I ask please?

Generally around the £15 mark, small amount of variance depending on the exact model.

Jon B
Above email address IS valid.
<http://www.bramley-computers.co.uk/> Apple Laptop Repairs.

Message #14 - Posted 2009/07/13 - T i m

On Mon, 13 Jul 2009 14:25:26 +0100, Jon B wrote:

Oooh, not that I need one but I have always thought the power in area could be better (as in easier_to_repair than most of them are) but how much would one be (retail) may I ask please?

Generally around the £15 mark, small amount of variance depending on the exact model.

Ah, cheers and are these just a sub board that mounts inside and / or that can be access without a strip down (still, better than having to replace a socket on the mainboard, even if it does involve a strip down etc).

T i m

Message #15 - Posted 2009/07/13 - Jon B

T i m wrote:

On Mon, 13 Jul 2009 14:25:26 +0100, Jon B wrote:

Oooh, not that I need one but I have always thought the power in area could be better (as in easier_to_repair than most of them are) but how much would one be (retail) may I ask please?

Generally around the £15 mark, small amount of variance depending on the exact model.

Ah, cheers and are these just a sub board that mounts inside and / or that can be access without a strip down (still, better than having to replace a socket on the mainboard, even if it does involve a strip down etc).

They are a sub-board inside, small amount of strip down to replace them. --
Jon B
Above email address IS valid.
<http://www.bramley-computers.co.uk/> Apple Laptop Repairs.

Message #16 - Posted 2009/07/13 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Mon, 13 Jul 2009 13:40:46 +0100, Jon B wrote:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

On Fri, 10 Jul 2009 19:58:47 +0100, gaz wrote:

I picked up a couple of generic magasafe chargers on ebay for macbooks so far very reliable, if they can manage a magsafe charger, i am sure they can manage the g4 connector.

Quite possibly better than Apple did. My Apple 12"PB psu developed a wire fault at the (non) strain relief. My sister's 12" iBook is currently down and disabled due to the centre spike of the power plug having snapped off inside the socket. Poor girl's using Vista.

I've got spare DC-in boards for these...

Ooh, ta! It's the same sister and iBook that you helped out with last time, by the way.

You can sometimes recover the pin out the DC-in board but if someone tries to put a new charger in usually they short out inside and ruin the old DC-in board.

Fortunately she didn't have a spare charger, so we should be okay. I'll be down there in a week or two, I'll have a look at it.

Cheers - Jaimie

"I do not like the feel of the middle way; and I do not like the smell of the left hand way" -- J R R Tolkien

Message #17 - Posted 2009/07/13 - T i m

On Mon, 13 Jul 2009 16:30:13 +0100, Jon B wrote:

Ah, cheers and are these just a sub board that mounts inside and / or that can be access without a strip down (still, better than having to replace a socket on the mainboard, even if it does involve a strip down etc).

They are a sub-board inside, small amount of strip down to replace them.

Ok thanks.

T i m

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