Power Mac 6500/275 Creative Studio

Yes, brothers and sisters, Jobs created this machine to show the world what everybody was talking about. The Power Macintosh Creative Studio is at once a good computer, phone/answering and fax machine, a TV/Radio and a Video editing device! Please refer to the links below, to know more about the specifications of this beauty. Note that this device can still compete in today’s world although it was launched in the mid nineties (°1997). My system was upgraded with an additional 64 Mb RAM (96 Mb in total), an AsantéFast PCI Ethernet adapter and an external Iomega ZIP Drive. The system was complemented with the Color Stylewriter 2400.


Power Macintosh 6500
Please refer to the following references:
The details of my configuration (Dutch version only) are published on The Net Gate Scratch site.
Some other folks have spent time to comment the system issues and to figure out problems:
The 6400 Zone‘ is a rich source of information about similar system users.





Video editing support
The Video editing features are based on the Avid Cinema and QuickTime products. The Avid Cinema card may cause conflicts depending on which Mac OS is used. Moreover, it depends on the QuickTime version installed. My recommendation is to work with Mac OS 8.5 or higher and to upgrade the Avid Cinema software to version 1.1.5. Be aware that the Apple Videoplayer uses the same resources and must be checked. Best experience I had with Apple Videoplayer version 1.7.x. You will find all these updates on the sites listed below (Apple and Avid).
ATI Chip
Conflicts with Mac OS 8.5
Upgrade your Avid Cinema software to version 1.1.5 and disable the ‘ATI Memory manager‘ extension.


Conflicts with Mac OS 8.6
Upgrade your Avid Cinema software to version 1.1.5 and disable the ‘ATI Resource Manager‘ extension. Apple Videoplayer 1.7.3 should be installed as part of your Mac OS installation.
My system currently works with these versions of software. The reference list of the active extensions can be downloaded (Dutch Mac OS version). You will also notice that I keep using QuickTime version 3.
Always disable Virtual Memory and keep the disk cache size to a minimum. In some cases you may need to enable the file sharing to capture video.


Conflicts with Mac OS 9.0.4 (reported by Dean Shepard)
This reports refers to  a 6500/300 with Avid cinema card.
“I have found that the Cinema card works ok with MacOS 9.0.4. Again you need to restore the AppleTelecom software to get it to work. However, despite having the VideoStartup v 1.7.3 extension, I can’t get the TV Tuner card or the FM Radio card to tune in at all.  May have to go back to Videostartup 1.7.2.  I installed MacOS8.0 on a separate disc (Orb 2.2Gb removable), upgraded up to OS8.1 whereupon both devices worked again. So it must be a software problem that needs rooting out.”


General comment:
Keep in mind that this system works with an on-board ATI Graphics Acceleration Chip (see picture above) for which ATI native drivers will not work.


Check out the following articles and sites for official documentation:







Apple Telecom support
The built in Geoport adapter requires specific software. When upgrading your Mac OS, look always for the Geoport/Express modem support (ref. Geoport Modem Tool). The last bundled software I found was on the Mac OS 8.0 CD-ROM. However, you will have to instal it separately from the ‘CD extra’s’ folder. The good news is, that it is compatible with Mac OS 8.6. The latest Apple Telecom Software (NA version 3.1.3) and the (Dutch) updater software is available from the Apple site. Verify the key assignments to enable the Telephone Tool. If you assign a ‘normal’ key (i.e. without a ‘command’ or ‘ctrl’ combination), this one will no longer be available in other software. Finally, Mac OS 8.6 users should also update the Apple Remote Access software to Version 3.1.3 (Dutch version).
Check out the following articles and sites for official documentation:


Troubleshooting no dial tone (Dutch version)





MAC OS 8.5 support
The system came with Mac OS 7.6 pre-installed. This is history, to get a clean install and keep up with more recent software versions, you may opt to go for Mac OS 8.5. These are the steps that I successfully followed:


step 1: Boot with the Mac OS 8.5 CD-ROM (hold the ‘c’ key at start up)
step 2: Run ‘Schijfinstallatie’ (disk installation)
select: Mac OS Uitgebreid (HFS+)
at reboot you need to run the Mac OS installation and configuration.
step 3: Run ‘Drive Setup 1.7.3’
select: Update Driver
reboot your system
step 4: Run ‘Apple Telecom installatie’ (see my notes on Apple Telecom)
step 5: At this point you should check if all the devices (printer, ethernet card, Remote control, …) are well configured and work correctly. To avoid confusion, enable only printer extensions for devices that you have attached. This way, the chooser (Kiezer) will only let you select devices that are actively available). Disable Virtual Memory.
step 6: Run ‘Mac OS 8.5.1 Update’
To make sure, run step 3 again. You may note that the system will take up about 6 Mb more, than when you installed on 8.5.
Your system should be fine now. Enjoy!





MAC OS 8.6 support
This system will run slightly faster with Mac OS 8.5. But the ‘Sherlock 2’ features and the TCP/IP support of Mac OS 8.6 are worth the speed drawback. Make sure you run the ‘Drive setup‘ after each upgrade to update the driver.


General comment:
Do not apply any patch or upgrade unless you experience the problems that are described by the vendors. Indeed, in some cases you only make life difficult. Follow the golden rule ‘do not touch it, when it works’.


Check out the following articles and sites for official documentation:


Flashing “?” solution description
Drive Setup 1.3.1 Read Me (check also for Drive Setup 1.7.3)





StuffItt Deluxe support
What WinZip offers to Windoowzz users, StuffItt does for MacOs users. If you started with StuffIt Deluxe 5.0 from Aladdin Systems, you can upgrade it. A free upgrade to 5.1.5 is available to registered users (have your serial# ready to instal). DropStuff and Expander version 6.0.x is available for PowerPC systems or higher. These upgrades are highly recommended if you experience problems with recently compressed files. They will coexist with your Stuffit Deluxe 5.1.5.





Microsoft Office 98 support
Installing Office 98 on the MAC is easy as (Apple) pie. After dragging the folders to your hard disk, the programs starts a first run installation when you open an Office programme. If this process aborts with a disk error code, update your drive setup.
Run ‘Drive Setup 1.7.3’
select: Update Driver
reboot your system
Additional dictionaries and spell checkers need to be installed manually (Value Pack option). An installer for the Value Pack offers you a selection list.
Check the  Microsoft web site (download area) for the latest updates. The Microsoft Office Manager (aka MOM) is available for download and can be easily added.





Microsoft Office 2001 support
Information about Microsoft Office 2001 is published on the Office Mac pages.


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