PowerBook 5300 PowerBook 5300

Macintosh PowerBook 5300 Datasheet

In the vibrant summer of 1995, Apple’s technological symphony hit a resounding note with the introduction of the Macintosh PowerBook 5300, a pivotal addition to their illustrious PowerBook series. This sleek and innovative notebook, meticulously designed, manufactured, and curated by Apple, set off a reverberation of awe among consumers, etching its mark in the annals of computing history.

With an audacious entry, the PowerBook 5300 burst onto the scene, brandishing specs that seemed like straight-out fiction for its era. Its 100 MHz PowerPC 603e processor roared at the core, harmonizing power and performance. The 9.5-inch monochrome LCD display, a technological marvel at the time, painted a mesmerizing canvas for users. Accompanied by 8 MB of RAM, a 500 MB hard drive, and a 1.44 MB floppy drive, this ensemble of cutting-edge components made the PowerBook 5300 an emblem of prowess tailored for both personal and professional domains.

The enchantment, however, met its curtain call just over a year later, on the first day of August in 1996. The PowerBook 5300, despite its swift exit from the stage, left an indelible impression on Apple’s saga of computers. It’s almost surreal to realize that this iconic gem of technology is now 28 years old, a testament to how swiftly the gears of innovation churn.

Fast forward to today, and the PowerBook 5300 has emerged as a cherished artifact in the collection of tech enthusiasts worldwide. Devotees of Apple’s legacy computers are drawn to this vintage masterpiece, yearning to grasp a tangible piece of a bygone era. For those fortunate enough to have experienced the marvel that was the PowerBook 5300, it remains a cherished memory, a time capsule that encapsulates the spirit of a distinctive epoch in the realm of computing.

The PowerBook 5300 stands as a significant chapter in Apple’s tale, being the first PowerBook to house a PowerPC CPU. However, this tale of triumph wasn’t devoid of hurdles. Challenges like the infamous fire risks stemming from the original lithium battery, issues of chipping plastic from the case, and underwhelming performance marred its brilliance. Despite these hiccups, we can’t help but view the PowerBook 5300 as a Compromised Mac, an offering that carried the weight of expectations but faced its fair share of tribulations.

Nevertheless, even within its limitations, the PowerBook 5300 gleamed as a portable marvel, akin to its 68040-based counterpart, the PowerBook 190. A modern twist, upgrading to Mac OS 8.1 or beyond metamorphosed its reliability into an unshakeable edifice. Not to mention, its compact form factor set it apart from the grandeur of the PowerBook G3 Series, fondly dubbed as Wall Street.

As we stroll down memory lane, the PowerBook 5300 emerges as a sentinel of Apple’s journey through innovation’s peaks and valleys. With its graceful strides and the resonance of its clicks, this iconic notebook imparts an invaluable lesson: Even amidst challenges, technology’s march remains steadfast, fueled by visionaries who dare to dream differently.

Macintosh PowerBook 5300
Source: ifixit.com – Macintosh PowerBook 5300

Macintosh PowerBook 5300 Details

IntroducedAugust 28, 1995
DiscontinuedAugust 1, 1996
Model Identifier128
Model NumberM2785
Order NumberM3135LL/A
Original Price$2,200
ColorsDark Grey
Weight5.9 Ibs.
2.676 KG
Dimensions2” H x 11.5” W x 8.5” D
5.08 cm H x 29.21 cm W x 21.59 cm D

PowerBook 5300 Tech Specs


ProcessorPowerPC 603e
Processor Speed100 MHz
Number of Cores1
System Bus33 MHz
Cache16 KB L1
CoprocessorBuilt-in FPU

Storage & Media

Storage500 MB
Media1.44 MB floppy


Built-in Memory8 MB
Maximum Memory64 MB
Memory Slots1 – PowerBook 53xx 120-pin connector
Minimum Speed60 ns
Interleaving SupportNo


Built-in Display9.5″ DualScan monochrome passive-matrix LCD
Resolutions640 x 480


Graphics CardNone
Graphics Memory512 KB
1 MB
Display Connection1 – Mini-15


Expansion Slots2 – Type II or 1 – Type III PC Card
Hard Drive InterfaceIDE
Bays1 – PowerBook 5300 Bay 90-pin


Infrared1 – 1 Mbps
SCSI1 – HDI-30
Floppy PortNone
Audio In1 – 3.5-mm analog input jack
1 – Built-in microphone
Audio Out1 – 3.5-mm analog output jack
1 – Built-in speaker
Display1 – Mini-15

Keyboard and trackpad

KeyboardBuilt-in Full-size 76-key (U.S.) or 77-key (ISO) incl. 12 function and 4 arrow keys
TrackpadBuilt-in Solid-state trackpad


Original OSSystem Software 7.5.2
Maximum OSMac OS 9.1
FirmwareMacintosh ROM


System BatteryNiMH
Backup Battery3V Lithium CR2330
Maximum Continuous Power45 W
Line VoltageUnknown
Power AdapterUnknown

Further Reading and References

Disclaimer: The data presented in this article is under continuous development and has been manually collected from various sources based on their availability. The author of this article may revise this dataset as additional research is conducted and reviewed. Please note that the information is provided “as is” and “as available” without express or implied warranties. The author cannot be held responsible for any omissions, inaccuracies, or errors in the published information. Any warranties relating to this information are hereby disclaimed.

Last updated: August 28, 2023