Powermac G5: Death by Firewire

in Genius Bar edited January 2014
Problem: Dual 2.5Ghz G5 (AGP) won't start


I had an eyeTV 200 plugged into the front. The eyetv has been working for years--no problems.

I plugged a Seagate external firewire hard drive into the eyeTV's 2nd port (used for daisy chaining).

When I plugged in the segate's power supply, a loud pop and a puff of smoke came out of the eyeTV and the G5 shut off.

The G5 has not been able to start ever since--the power light wont come on, but I know it draws power because the lights dim when I plug it in.

The phase displacement of the seagate's shitty power supply must have sent a shock through the eyeTV and into the computer.

Obviously, I have no hope for the eyeTV. The G5, however, is very important.

So the question is: Did the G5's motherboard get wiped out simply by overloading the firewire bus? or can something be done?


  • Reply 1 of 4
    lundylundy Posts: 4,466member
    It might be toast, but here is what I do with mine:

    - Disconnect ALL USB and FireWire things except the keyboard and mouse.

    - Shut down and unplug power.

    - Remove side door.

    - Remove plastic baffle.

    - Pull out gray plastic fan assembly by grasping plastic handle.

    - Take a pencil, eraser end first, and push tiny silver button that is on a black square base that is on the motherboard just to the left of where the fan assembly was, at the bottom of the mobo.

    - Reassemble. When reinserting fan assembly, do not force - adjust until you feel the plug on the back go into its socket.

    If that does nothing, remove the PRAM battery on the mobo and wait 30 minutes, then reinsert and repeat above PMU reset procedure.

    If still nothing, remove video card and try starting up

    And for diagnosis, does it make a click inside when you plug in the power cord? Or not?
  • Reply 2 of 4
    Originally Posted by lundy

    And for diagnosis, does it make a click inside when you plug in the power cord? Or not?

    Yes, it clicks.

    I tried pressing the SMU reset switch (nothing happened) but I didn't disconnect everything first.

    I'll try again tomorrow when I go over there (it's at another location).

    it's freakin me out....
  • Reply 3 of 4
    This is why I hate firewire. 30 volts is not a commonly found inside a pc. One faulty dc-dc converter and poof, your board is dead. HDDs will probably still be intact though. USB doesn't rely on dc-dc converters, so it cant ever go over-voltage. Not that it's of any use for DV...
  • Reply 4 of 4
    slugheadslughead Posts: 1,169member
    nope, tried all that stuff, nothing worked.

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