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In the ever-evolving world of technology, the year 1996 marked a significant milestone in the history of personal computing. On April 22nd, Apple released the Power Macintosh 7600, a powerhouse that quickly became the go-to choice for both consumers and businesses seeking high-performance computing.
Priced at $3,000, the Power Macintosh 7600 was designed to cater to the growing demands of users, offering a glimpse into the future of personal computing. Let’s take a nostalgic journey back to this iconic machine that helped shape the computer industry.
At the core of the Power Macintosh 7600 was the formidable PowerPC 604 processor, delivering clock speeds ranging from 120 MHz to 132 MHz. For power users, an upgrade option to a blazing-fast 200 MHz with the PowerPC 604e processor was available. Backed by 16 MB or 32 MB of RAM, this computer ensured smooth multitasking and high-speed performance, making it a formidable contender in its era.
The 7600 was no slouch when it came to storage. It came equipped with a spacious 1.2 GB or 2 GB hard drive, capable of accommodating an array of software, multimedia, and documents. Additionally, it featured a 4x CD-ROM or 8x CD-ROM drive for accessing data quickly, alongside a trusty 1.44 MB floppy drive, ensuring compatibility with legacy media.
Apple was always ahead of the curve when it came to connectivity. The Power Macintosh 7600 featured built-in S-video for video input and RCA ports for video and sound input. This was a significant boon for creative professionals and multimedia enthusiasts who needed seamless integration with external devices. Moreover, the 7600 offered single-stream video output, though dual-stream output was not supported.
The Power Macintosh 7600 inherited the sleek and upgradable desktop case design first introduced by its predecessor, the Power Macintosh 7500. The machine allowed users to perform upgrades conveniently, thanks to the innovative daughtercard that housed the faster PowerPC 604 processor. With 3 PCI slots and 168-pin DIMM slots for RAM, the 7600 provided ample room for customization.
For those seeking a more affordable option without the AV features, Apple also released the Power Macintosh 7300. These two models catered to varying user needs, showcasing Apple’s commitment to offering a wide range of choices.
Accompanying the 7600 were a suite of software gems, including Mac OS 7.5.3, Finder 7.5.5, LaserWriter 8.3.3, Apple Guide, AppleScript 1.0.1, ColorSync 1.0.5, QuickDraw 3D, QuickDraw GX, QuickTime 2.1, Speech Manager, Apple Video Player, PC Exchange, and Adobe Type Manager 3.8.3. These tools empowered users to explore the full potential of their machines.
Sadly, the Power Macintosh 7600’s journey was relatively short-lived. Just a year and a half after its debut, it bid adieu on November 10, 1997. However, its impact on the personal computer industry remains indelible. The 7600 paved the way for subsequent innovations, setting the stage for Apple’s continued dominance in the tech world.
Today, as we look back 27 years after the release of the Power Macintosh 7600, it stands as a symbol of Apple’s prowess in pushing the boundaries of personal computing. Its remarkable specifications and user-friendly design were a testament to Apple’s commitment to innovation.
In a world where technology continues to advance at an unprecedented pace, the Power Macintosh 7600 remains a cherished relic from a pivotal era in the evolution of personal computing. It reminds us of the remarkable journey that Apple has undertaken and continues to inspire us to embrace the future of technology with the same enthusiasm and innovation that characterized this iconic machine.
Power Macintosh 7600 Details
|Introduced||April 22, 1996 (120 MHz)|
August 7, 1996 (132 MHz)
February 17, 1997 (200 MHz)
|Discontinued||July 1, 1997 (120 MHz & 132 MHz)|
November 10, 1997 (200 MHz)
|Dimensions||6.15” H x 14.37” W x 16.93” D|
15.62 cm H x 36.5 cm W x 43 cm D
Power Mac 7600 Tech Specs
|Processor||PowerPC 604 (120 MHz & 132 MHz)|
PowerPC 604e (200 MHz)
|Processor Speed||120 MHz |
|Number of Cores||1|
|System Bus||40 MHz|
|Cache||16 or 32 KB L1|
256 KB L2
Storage & Media
|Media||1 – 1.44 MB Floppy|
1 – 4x CD-ROM or 8x CD-ROM or 12x CD-ROM
|Built-in Memory||16 MB|
|Maximum Memory||512 MB (Apple)|
1.0 GB (Actual)
|Memory Slots||8 – 168 pin DIMM|
|Minimum Speed||70 ns|
|Graphics Memory||1 MB|
|Display Connection||1 – DB-15|
|Expansion Slots||3 – PCI|
|Hard Drive Interface||SCSI|
|Ethernet||1 – AAUI-15 and 10BASE-T|
|SCSI||1 – DB-25|
|Audio In||1 – 3.5-mm analog input jack|
2 – RCA input
|Audio Out||1 – 3.5-mm analog output jack|
1 – Built-in speaker
2 – RCA output
|Display||1 – DB-15|
|Original OS||System Software 7.5.5|
|Maximum OS||Mac OS 9.1|
|Backup Battery||3.6 V lithium|
|Maximum Continuous Power||150 W|
|Line Voltage||100-125/200-240 V|
Further Reading and References
- Power Macintosh 7600/120: Technical Specifications – Apple Support
- Power Macintosh 7600/132: Technical Specifications – Apple Support
- Power Macintosh 7600/200: Technical Specifications – Apple Support
- Power Macintosh 7600 – Wikipedia
- Power Mac 7600 – Low End Mac
- Power Mac 7500 & 7600 – MacGurus
- Macintosh 7500/7600 – Ancientelectronics
- Power Macintosh 7300/ 7500/7600 & WS 7350 Service Source (PDF) – Apple Repair Manuals
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: September 16, 2023