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Just Updated 2/10/2001

New Home for my web site!: Well hopefully you have found my new home relatively easy :) I am now fully running in my new location on Apples iTools service. My new home page address which you should bookmark is


Please tell anyone you know that visits my site about my new web address. I will try and hit a few of the major Mac help sites my self with this info. Email me if you find any links broken so I can fix them. Thanks. I would also appreciate it if you could start using my new email address "zone6400@mac.com" so I can cancel AOL more quickly :)

New Mac Equipment for Sale page: I just created a new page where you can enter your own items for sale without having to email the list to me for posting. I thought this would help out in getting your items posted faster and easing me email load :) All the links to my old page will still work for a short time but if you would like to keep your items posted, please move them to my new page. I won't be keeping the old page up much longer! Eventually all my links will go directly to the new list.

Sonnet working hard to get OSX to run on older non-OSX compatible Macs!: Here is a link to a MacWorld UK article on Sonnet trying to make their G3 upgrades Mac OSX compatible. As I have stated before, I would not expect OSX to work on our systems due to the way the G3 is being accessed and the other differences in the mother boards from Apples business systems (7500-9600). But the article does mention that they are working on compatibility for the Performa 5400 which is the same as the 6400 practically, so maybe it might happen? If they do get it working I would think it will only be worth it if you have maxed out your ram and have a decent speed L2 G3 upgrade. At least a 300Mhz or faster? Even on my PB 233 G3, OSX is sluggish :(

6400 user looking for an old COMM II Ethernet card: Rob sent me this message. Please email him if you can help out. Thanks.

Wanted: COMM SLOT II ethernet card. These apparently came standard in many 6400's.. Either 10bt or 10/100 are fine. Thanks in advance. Rob]

Sound stuttering in games with ATI Rage128 and Sonnet G3 installed: Below is a typical example of letters I receive from people that are having trouble playing games with a fully upgraded 6400.

[I have a 6400/180 w/ 136MB of RAM upgraded with a Sonnet L2/G3/400 1MB/200 cache ...... also an ATI RAGE Orion 128 I am having a sound problem that I can't seem to solve. I have tried the PCI Timing Update trick, the 2d accel. Disable trick, and the ATI Extension one.... none have helped me in my situation. The sound is great except for in games .. all games have choppy sound once numerous sounds start happening, or doors open, walking noises, ambient sounds, etc ....

I have MacOS 9.1
ATI Drivers are the ones that come w/ 9.1
OpenGL is version 1.2.1
ATI RAGE Orion 128 Card
Sonnet Driver is v1.4.5

everything is as recent as I can get it and I can't seem to get it.. everyone else seems to be having luck.. well what are they using for OS and etc... ???
Thanks for the help

Everyone else is not having luck :( This is an ongoing issue with Sonnets G3 upgrade on the 6400. Or its ATI's fault? I have not yet gotten a definite answer but the combo of ATI, G3 and 6400 cause this audio stutter issue during intense gaming or video playback. There is a big timing issue on the PCI bus of non G3 Macs and this causes audio stuttering and in some cases video stuttering. This problem even happens with songs being played back from IDE-PCI card attached HD's. Its a limitation of the 6400 mostly :(

You can try to decrease your HD cache in the memory control panel to like 1024k and see if that helps? I think you tried all the other tricks I mentioned on my site?

6400 mother board clocked caused sound issue and possible fix?: A reader of my site that had clocked his mother board found he got audio stuttering issue afterwards. He then noticed that if a CD was inserted (any type) that the stuttering stopped! Thanks for the info. I was wondering if this might also help others with ATI Rage128 cards or G3 upgrades that have audio issues? Please let me know. Thanks

[Hello Thomas,
I have found and an interesting thing by accident. When a CD is in the drive and mounted on the desktop.....no sound skipping when playing MP3's! I took the CD out (threw it in the trash ) and the skipping came back! Obviously I am intrigued as to why this is because there has to be a work around. Have any ideas?? Any readers have an idea?
For now I will leave a CD in the CD ROM while I am listening to music!
HB McKinney]

One solution to burn audio CD's faster then 1x on the 6400: I had posted a message from Ed last time where he stated he was unable to burn an audio CD faster then 1x as I have found myself. Well today he writes that he found a solution for his problem. It turned out to be the third party CD drivers he was using for his CD ROM. Thanks Ed. This would not fix my problem because I am already using Apples drivers :(

[Tom, I am the person who's e-mail you posted about burning audio CDs faster than 1x speed. Thank you for your response and for placing my question on your website. I was using CD-Rom Speedtools as the driver for all of my CD-ROM devices. I thought it was the best way to go, however, I decided to put the Apple driver back in the extensions folder just to see if it would make any difference. Well, all of a sudden I was able to get a speed of 1.4 mbps from my internal CD-ROM driver and I can now burn audio cds at 6x speed directly from disk to disk. Using the Speedtools driver I could only get a speed of 500-600 kbps. I knew the internal device should be capable of 8x speed but couldn't figure out why I it wasn't getting up there. The Speedtools driver seems to have the same effect on my external cd-rom, which is an NEC 40x. It will give me a data transfer speed of 2.4 mbps but only 600-700 kbps on audio cds. For some reason the Toast software won't allow 2x speed, so if you can't make 4x speed only 1x speed is left. You need at least 800-900 kbps to copy at 4x speed. I tried hacking the Apple driver to work on the NEC but it would only work for files and folders. If I try an audio CD I get a Mac OS error -50. It seems that the Speedtools driver doesn't like audio cds. My writer is capable of 8x speed, but I'll settle for 6x. I have read that some CD writers are not capable of high speed audio extraction. Thanks again--Ed]

Ed later sent me an update with a blurb about Toast not recommending a CD to CD copy. Thanks Ed.

[Tom, Yes, that's correct. I copied a CD at 6x and it plays fine, although, I have been advised that copying CDs that way may not be the most reliable method. The Toast manual recommends placing the files on the desktop first.]

Here are some more letters from people who have been able to burn an audio CD faster then 1x. Thanks guys.

[Hi, I have a Performa 6400/200 (EDO compatible) L2 cache 256k with a Sanyo CD burner 8x 2x 20x and Toast 4.1 and I have always been able to burn audio CDs from CD to CD at a 4x rate. (Though I have an old diskman CD player on my HiFi and I was said and experienced that for old players a 2x burning rate is more convenient. Any idea why ?). I also burn my data Cds at 4x, and noticed that I could hardly make it at 8x. I was thinking using a PCI Fast SCSI card for increasing performances. Now I have a Sonnet G3 300MHz/1Mo L2 cache and I can actually burn Cds for data or Audio at 8x rate. Is this the processor speed or the L2 cache or both, well that's running fine. Your site is great ! Long life to it ! Thierry]

[Hi Tom,I've had no problems burning CD's from the internal to my Panasonic 6502 (?--rated 4x) in the upper SCSI drive bay at 2x--I get pops and stutters any faster than that. FWIW.Keep up the good work,David]

[If you're willing to give up a tad in fidelity (most will never notice), rip the audio tracks in a higher quality mp3, then burn directly from mp3 to audio CD with Toast. It's really easy!
Great site! Rob]

So it sounds like you will not be able to burn reliably over 1x or 2x unless you have a faster CPU or perhaps a very fast burner?

OS 9.1 and Newers L2 G3: I received this letter from Vic who says hie Newer G3 runs fine with OS 9.1. Thanks Vic.

[Thank you for your site!!! I read "Mark's" feedback on OS 9.1 and took the plunge last night from a stable 9.04 setup to 9.1. Mucho success!

I now have a Performa 6400/200 (Newer 300 G3 L2) running 9.1 very stable, very quick! Original monitor w/Rage Exclaim PCI video, Stylewriter 4100, SCSI Paperport strobe (5.3), external Lacie USB 10G HD, and Palm Hotsync through Keyspan USB converter. Over 200 extensions in Conflict Catcher.

So far, so good. Very happy. It can be done. Good luck to all.

USB cards may be causing issues with USB mice?: Greg sent me some info on trouble he had with his Logitech USB mouse and that buying a different USB PCI card fixed it. Thanks Greg.

[Hi tom. After reading your letters, Rick's letter on the logitech mouse caught my attention. I also have a logitech mouse , two button wheel optical. In the beginning I also had trouble. First thing was I found that using USB Over Drive mouse drivers were better than the logitech, less problems more choices. Second some of his problems could be the USB card itself. My first card was a BELKIN and it was always freezing, Belkin even said there were some problems with there cards, so I bought a different card, I do not have the box in front of me and can not think of the name. Since changing cards and drivers I have had 99% good luck, every once in a while it will freeze but only seems to do it on certain older games.

hope it will be of some help

Caution using IDE PCI cards and HD formatting utilities!: Bob sends word that using an IDE card causes IDE HD's to appear as SCSI drives to the Mac. The problem then is that SCSI HD formatting utilities will allow you to format these drives! This is bad since you are not supposed to low level format an IDE HD. They should only be initialized which just prepares them for use. Not to be completely remapped. Thanks Bob.

[One word of caution with the UltraTek: From the Mac's side, it looks like a SCSI drive. The problem is that Drive Setup allows low-level formatting of SCSI and so that option is available for formatting the ATA drive too. However, VST cautions that only the regular "initialize" button should be used because the low-level format damages an ATA device! I also just read a note that the drive has to have SCSI drivers installed after moving over from the IDE bus of the Mac to the controller.

Trouble using a TurboMax ATA/66 card in a 6500: Here is a link to an article on Accelerate Your Macs web site, that Bob sent me, which is from a 6500 owner having trouble getting a TurboMax ATA/66 IDE PCI card to work. Basically he says he was unable to use the IDE1 channel for booting and had to install his boot drive on the IDE2 channel. Thanks for the link Bob. This person had not tried placing a secondary drive on the IDE1 channel as of the original posting so it may work for a non boot drive but I don't know? Has anyone else had trouble with booting from drives connected to IDE PCI cards?

UltraTek66 card in a 6400 issue: speaking of issues with IDE PCI cards, Bob sent me some more info on using an UltraTek66 IDE card in his 6400. Thanks Bob. He is working with UltraTek to find a solution to this problem.

[The VST UltraTek66 card works fine in the 9600--not at all in the 6400! I moved it into the 9600 tonight, and my Maxtor 30 GB initialized on it right away in the 9600, but initialization fails in the 6400 on both ports.

He later sent this email stating he was unable to get the card to work in his 6400 :( Thanks for the update Bob. Has anyone tried the UltraTek66 ATA card in their 6400/6500 and gotten it to work?

[Well, I have no good news on getting the VST card to run in the 6400. I had the card (with my own) in the 9600 and flashed the ROM to v1.1.2, and had my Maxtor 30 GB drive initialized on it. I moved the pair to the 6400--and the Mac sees the drive on the card but says it isn't initialized. I tried Drive Setup from both OS 9.0.4 and 9.1 to no avail. Part way thru it says "initialization failed" and that's it. So the card is coming out of there. I'll see if Buy.com will let me send it back.

I did get a note from VST tech support and they say that they have "seen issues" with the Maxtor drives--they recommend IBM and also say that the Quantum and Toshiba drives work quite well.

So I don't know what else to tell you. It was a cool idea, too bad it didn't work ;-(.

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CD containing The 6400 Zone plus past history for sale 9/3/1999

I was wondering if anyone would be interested in purchasing a CD with my entire up-to-date site as well as my 6400 Take Apart Manual? Plus, many of the past Just Updates included! I think this would be a great idea for anyone who hasn't been able to keep up or never saw my site until recently. Also for those of you with Sherlock the CD is even better cause you can tell Sherlock to index the CD and then you can do a search on any topic, and if I ever talked about it, you'll find it! I have info as far back as mid 1997. I'm asking $15 which includes shipping for US residents (not sure what the price for international shipments would be yet?) and I will even include a few surprises! To make this offer even juicier I can add some download that you've been trying to get but just couldn't for some reason. Lets put my cable modem to work :) I will accept personal checks but I won't mail out the CD till it clears.

Please include your shipping address and email so I can let you know the CD is on its way.

amazon.com, books and more 7/2/98

I found a great way to earn some money while getting great deals to you on Macintosh books and software plus they have all kinds of other books, music, and more. Please click on the amazon.com link on the top of this page whenever you feel like purchasing something to help sponsor this site. If you're unsure of what you want and wish to get a list of Mac related items, just type Macintosh in the search field on their home page and you will be presented with many choices to select.

The 6400 Zone is created to help you gain access to useful software updates and great shareware programs that add functionality to your system. It is also a one stop road map to other informative sites for answering your questions. Most of the info here is geared towards the 6400, but it is useful for all PCI Performa models and even the 6500 and all-in-one Macs based on the same. It's even useful to other MAC systems. I will be referring to my 6400/200 clocked to 220Mhz as just 6400/220, OK.

I will keep it updated as often as I can but I don't have much free time to work on it, so I suggest you check back at least once every a week. That should be sufficient. If you don't see something you would like to see here or have your own software / web site that would benefit the Mac community, please write to me at zone6400@mac.com and I will check it out.

I use a Performa 6400/180 OS 9.0.4, Performa 6400/220 OS 9.0.4, B&W G3/350 OS 9.1, PowerBook G3/233 OS 9.0.4 and OSX beta, PM 6100 G3/240 OS 9.0.4, and a PowerBook DUO 270c OS 7.5.5. All of the software updates posted here are currently running on one or the other with minimal problems. If I do encounter a problem, I will post it for all to read and respond to. If you are having any problems and would like help just email me and if I can answer it I will, or I will post it here for others to read and respond to.

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