"Mystic" Upgrade Questions

2.1.1 — What is a "Mystic" CC?

A "Mystic" CC is one that is powered by a 68040-based, Performa/LC 57x-series board, including the LC 575, Performa 575, Performa 577, and Performa 578 models.

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2.1.2 — What motherboards can I use for a "Mystic" upgrade?

There are three motherboards that can be used for the Mystic upgrade: the Performa/LC 575, 577, and 578 boards. All three motherboards are identical in specification; the model number differences are due to factory software and CD-ROM/hard drive configuration differences that were independent of the motherboard.

You CANNOT use a 580-series board. The 580-series boards are identical to the 630-series boards and require the Takky surgery.

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2.1.3 — I'm a klutz with a soldering iron. Can't I do something in software instead?

Yes. While I personally find doing the VGA modification to get 640x480 resolution much more useful, you can do some ResEdit hacking to avoid the issue of soldering entirely. Obviously, you won't get higher resolution, but you can use a 57x board without any modifications to the board or CC's hardware. Special thanks goes out to the pickle for simplifying and documenting this hack and to MISUTHiKU for providing the gestalt ID and boot process information.

Machine Gestalt ID Boot Process
Colo(u)r Classic 49 18
57x with 640x480 92 10
57x without 640x480 99 10

Gestalt ID info is from the KBase Archive article 9095.

Whenever you use ResEdit, always work on a copy of the file. This prevents you from accidentally causing permanent damage to a file that might otherwise require re-installation to fix.

If you're using 7.5.x, 7.6.x, or 8.x:

  1. Make a copy of the System file and open the copy in ResEdit.
  2. Download the pickle's TMPL file for ResEdit to edit the 'gusd' resources.
  3. Unstuff this file and transfer it over to the system where you're doing the editing.
  4. Open this file with ResEdit too, so you have both the copy of the System and the TMPL file open. You do not need to do anything with the TMPL other than open it, although you can copy the TMPL resource found in the file into either the ResEdit Preferences file or a copy of the ResEdit application itself if you want to avoid this step in the future.
  5. Open up the 'gusd' resources in the duplicate System file and find the gestalt ID corresponding to the 57x without 640x480 (ID number 99).
  6. Change the boot process — and ONLY the boot process — from 21 (the boot process for a 58x) to 10 (the boot process for a 57x) according to the table above. Leave the gestalt ID at 99 (unchanged), or your editing won't have any effect.
  7. Save your changes.
  8. Remove the old (un-edited) version of the System from the System Folder, but don't trash it just yet.
  9. Re-name the edited version to "System" and make sure it's in the System Folder.
  10. Open and close the System Folder once to make sure it's "blessed," and you're done.

If you're using System 7.1:

  1. Get Enabler 065 v1.1 (Where do I get it?) and make a copy.
  2. Get the pickle's 'gbly' template.
  3. Move the TMPL file to the machine you're doing the editing on and open it.
  4. Open the Enabler and then open the 'gbly' resources.
  5. Click on the number 6, at the end of the gestalt ID list.
  6. Go to Resource -> Insert New Field(s).
  7. In the blank box that appears, type the number 93. Save your changes.
  8. Make sure the edited Enabler is in your System Folder and is the only Enabler file present, and you're done.

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2.1.4 — How do I overclock a Mystic?

Full directions for overclocking a 57x motherboard can be found at the Gabezing Room.

Having done this to a couple 575 boards myself, and having reports from several others who have done it, I highly recommend getting several sets of 80ns VRAM to try in the likely event that your VRAM isn't fast enough to avoid video artifacts. I found a pair of 70ns modules solved all the problems, while some have found that certain 80ns modules work great while some simply give a black screen. Apparently some 80ns modules are faster than others.

40 MHz seems to be a speed that almost everyone can easily achieve, but speeds over about 43 MHz seem to be pretty much luck if they are achieved. I tried a 22.44 MHz oscillator (44.88 MHz CPU/motherboard bus speed) in mine after installing the 70ns VRAM, but got a black screen. Perhaps 60ns VRAM (haven't heard of any ever being made in the proper form factor) would have cured this, but without a display, I couldn't test the serial ports either, which are reported to fail at about 43 MHz.

If you're looking for parts to perform the overclocking, or need a parts list, check out my parts list page.

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2.1.5 — What Mac OS is best for my Mystic?

While a lot depends on personal preferences, there are definite factual reasons for using one OS over another. I've summarised the main points here:

System/OS version Advantages Disadvantages
7.1 Low RAM usage (< 3 MB), low disk space usage (< 15 MB), fast boot time, generally very snappy, very stable Requires that you install extra bits to bring functionality up to that of 7.5.x and up, not easily available for free
7.5.x Free from Apple, installs everything you need RAM hog, slow to boot, requires lots of free disk space for the install files (40MB) and for the OS, generally buggy
7.6.x Much more stable than 7.5.x RAM hog, slow boot time, uses lots of disk space, not free, somewhat rare on CD
8.0 none buggy as all hell — update to 8.1 immediately
8.1 Very stable, very modern, looks pretty RAM hog, disk space hog, noticeably slower in the Finder than 7.1, slow boot time (even worse than 7.5/7.6), not free

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2.1.6 — Can I use 64 MB or larger SIMMs in my Mystic?

Yes. Modules with a 2K refresh rate are best, although 4K refresh modules will work in some cases. EDO or FPM makes no known difference as the Mac's RAM controller ignores the EDO capability.

64 MB modules must be either single-banked or 2K refresh. A double-banked, 4K refresh module will be read as 32 MB. Single-banked 4K modules will work fine, and double-banked 2K modules also work.

128 MB modules do not exist in single-banked configurations. Double-banked modules with a 2K refresh rate work fine, while those with a 4K refresh rate are only known to work if they use Samsung KM44V1610n-series chips (where n is usually 0 or 4). The 2K refresh modules are currently stocked only by Coast to Coast Memory (1-800-4-MEMORY in the United States; order part number SNED32U/128/G5V60), at a cost of US$29 before shipping. Known-working 4K refresh modules are substantially more expensive and are stocked by several vendors at prices starting at US$75.

Recent (late January 2003) reports indicate Coast to Coast is now stocking RAM made with NEC D42565405G5-series chips (the last three characters are a mask revision number and may vary). It is unknown if these modules are 2K or 4K refresh, but they work in a 575 just fine and are recognised as 128 MB.

For more information, have a look at this article detailing 64 MB SIMM compatibility with 68K Macs.

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2.1.7 — I've got this killer Mystic but it has a big gaping hole in the back. How can I cover it?

Well, probably the best way to do it is to get a back panel from a 57x, a Dremel-type rotary tool, and these directions/pictures.

MISUTHiKU and Mr. Tsun, both CCSCC members, have documented a similar procedure the involves piecing together a donor CC back panel and a cut-up 575 back panel. It looks nice from a distance, but I wonder if the seam is noticeable close-up.

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2.1.8 — What about the PowerPC card for a 575?

Don't bother unless you can get it free or for next to nothing. While it will give you a PowerPC with less work than the full Takky surgery, it will, in many cases, feel slower than the original 575 board. I quote Bruce Hossfield's experience with the 100 MHz variant:

I had expected the Power Mystic to run at least as fast as my 7100/80, but no. According to Speedometer, it runs at 100 MHz, and I have done a few speed tests with my own software and technically, it does, in fact, perform a little faster than the 7100/80. It also certainly runs my PPC-only software, which is nice.

But there are two problems: First, it opens and closes software programs very slowly. Second, and more importantly, it is a major dog on the internet. I am no technician, but I attribute these problems primarily to the slow bus speed (33 MHz) and to a lesser extent to the RAM restriction (36 MB).

Note that the much more common card is the 66 MHz version (only a hundred of the 100 MHz version were produced once Sonnet took over production from Daystar), which is only two-thirds the speed of the card Bruce is describing. Keep in mind, too, that Bruce paid US$225 for his 100 MHz card in June 2001, and the 66 MHz versions were still selling for over $100 on eBay as of October 2001.

Also, as Bruce mentions, the ROM on the cards will not recognise any SIMMs over 32 MB, no matter what. This limits the user to a maximum of 36 MB RAM, which, in my opinion, is insufficient for a PowerPC-based system running much more than one application plus the OS. For the $225 you'd pay for a 100 MHz card, you could buy two CCs and the necessary parts to upgrade each to an x500 board. Keep that in mind.

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2.1.9 — Where can I get the necessary System Enabler for my Mystic?

The Mac 512 User Group has a Color Classic Enabler Pack that includes both versions of the Enabler 065 (to use a 575 motherboard with System 7.1, you'll need v1.1) and the original Enabler 403 that shipped with the CC.

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2.1.10 — Can I add an L2 cache to my Mystic?

Maybe. The CPU-socket L2 cache intended for the Quadra 605 will physically fit on a 57x-series motherboard but will block the use of the PDS, necessitating the use of the Comm Slot for Ethernet and precluding the use of a video or audio card in the PDS. Unfortunately, these cache modules are incredibly rare and expensive; I've heard of two in 7+ years on the Internet and know of only one possible source for others: MicroMac, who charge US$99 for a module they claim only works in the Quadra 605. (At least one other company besides MicroMac made the modules, but MicroMac is the only one still in business.)

Why do they make this claim, you might ask? Clock speed may make a difference. I have conflicting reports on the cache speed issue, with one reliable source saying speed is irrelevant and that all caches should work regardless of motherboard clock speed, and the other reliable source saying that 25MHz and 33MHz versions of the cache were made, and the 25MHz version doesn't work at higher speeds. If the latter is correct, overclocked Mystics are almost certainly precluded from using any L2 cache. Unfortunately, no Mystic user has yet been able to test one of these modules, so no one really knows for sure.

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2.1.11 — Will Comm Slot cards fit my Mystic?

The official Apple specification says that Comm Slot cards should be no more than 40 mm in height, which will present no problems when installed in a Mystic. However, a good number of manufacturers chose to ignore this specification and as a result, a lot of Comm Slot cards are too tall to fit inside the chassis. The Apple and Sonic Systems Ethernet cards are short enough to fit, as are the various (horribly slow) Global Village modems. Many Asanté, Dayna, and Farallon cards are 3-10 mm too tall, necessitating various surgical modifications to the chassis, ranging from a small slit all the way up to cutting off a section of the portion of the hard disk bracket.

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2.1.12 — What external monitor options exist for my Mystic?

Other than an LC PDS video card, there exists one other option: the PowerR Presenter 575, a device that clips on top of the video/RAM controller on the 575 motherboard and provides externa VGA and DB-15 connectors for video mirroring of the internal display. If you want extended desktop functionality, the only option is an LC PDS card, but they're rare and generally slow compared to their NuBus counterparts.

Note that none of the solutions above will increase the speed of internal video at all; there's no (easy) way to accomplish such a task. It has been speculated that a video card's output could be connected to the appropriate video lines in the wiring harness in order to drive the internal monitor from a video card, but no one has (to our knowledge) yet tried this, and since no LC PDS cards come close to the speed of the built-in video on the 575, it seems like such an endeavour might be a waste of time.

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2.1.13 — I'm a complete klutz with ResEdit. Can't I do some soldering instead?

Yep. Remove R116 (zero ohms, located on the bottom of the 575 logic board to the left of RP9) and solder a 4.7K ohm resistor at R109 (near R116). If you don't have the proper resistor, you can get away with using the zero-ohm resistor you just removed. Make sure nothing is installed across R110 (remove anything you find there) and you should be ready to go.

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2.1.14 — Why doesn't my Mystic have any video output?

Well, assuming you've eliminated any possibility of bad connections (you did do that first, right?), you'd better make sure you have VRAM installed on the board. The 575 board has no onboard VRAM — just the two slots — so you'll have no picture if you leave these slots empty.

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Last Modified on 06 November 2013
by Chris Lawson

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