Written by Colin on 8/13/2008
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So the Powermac G5 (Dual 1.8 GHz, 2.5GB RAM, 80GB HD, 128 MB ATI Radeon 9600, Early 2004) in my house randomly turned off the other day for no reason. After numerous attempts in reviving the device, nothing would prompt a response. The power button seemed non-responsive and the little light on the front refused to even light up. I opened the case and reset the PMU in hopes of fixing a power functionality problem. Of course, that didn't work either. I then took the PRAM battery out and checked the voltage on it to make sure it wasn't dead (which is wasn't). At that point I knew something was very wrong. I unplugged the power cable and let the computer sit for about an hour and tried restarting it. No good. I noticed that when I plugged the power cable in, there was no sound of the power supply acknowledging the connect of the cable. I found another power cable that we had lying around and plugged that one in in hopes of only a bad cable. Still no luck. At that point I decided we probably had a fried power supply (or possibly a broken logic board, but I don't know how/if the computer would respond with that broken).

I have no idea how to test for a broken power supply, but I do know that I could fix it if I had the parts. I decided to take it to the Apple store to see what they have to say and see how much it would cost to get it fixed by them (way out of warranty and probably relatively expensive). Looking at power supplies for the PowerMac G5 (June 2004) returns parts costing around $200, which isn't bad. Unfortunately, because it's kinda old it's a little hard to find the specific parts more or less a decent price. It'd be awesome if the Apple Store finds something else minor wrong with it that doesn't require a massive part change. And it'd be awesome if they'd fix it (which I really doubt). The least I hope to gain from this is to diagnose exactly what is wrong and then figure out what to do from there. I guess I'll find out this afternoon...

I stood around the Apple Store for about 20 minutes waiting for a Genius to become available. At that point, he asked me what was wrong, apologized for taking so long, and started checking it out. He tried the power button, then reset the PMU, then got a voltage tester to check some values internally. He muttered something about trickle-down voltage and then said he would need to keep it in order to figure out what was wrong. So I signed the paperwork and handed over the computer to Apple to "diagnose." There's supposed to be a diagnostic fee of $100 but he waived it for some reason. He said it was probably the power supply (Yes! I win) or worse case scenario, logic board problems. He said fixing the power supply would cost about $300 with the part itself costing $165 and the labor $135. So hopefully that's all it is cause otherwise it starts to get really expensive (like new computer expensive). On a whole, it was a fairly decent experience and took about 30 minutes in total, which was pretty quick for tech support I guess. Hopefully they'll get back to us about it quickly and then we can figure out what to do. yippie.


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