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Old July 6th, 2004, 06:08 PM   #1
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old mac g3 powerbook solutions

Help please,
I have an old g3 powerbook I take on the road with me. I'd like to play DVD's on it for clients, but it doesn't have the expansion bay dvd drive. I'm trying to find a cheap ($100.00) solution for watching DVD's. I can by a USB rewritable drive for like 80 bucks, but have no way to hook it into the lap top. It has an SCSI port but no USB I do have a firewire PCI card that i use for my camera though. Is there some kind of a converter I can buy that will allow me to use this type of periferal. Any other ideas would be greatly welcomed.
Thanks in advance
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Old July 7th, 2004, 06:40 PM   #2
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Why would a USB rewritable drive be helpful? My understanding is that you want to play DVDs on your laptop. Or do you just want to get the DVD video files onto your laptop so you can play them back?

If you have a camera with firewire it might do pass-through analog to digital conversion. You could hook up a DVD player's outputs to your camera and then use the camera's firewire to plug into your laptop. You could then record the movie via iMovie and then play back the file as you see fit. Of course, that assumes your G3 can handle it. You must have something less than 300Mhz if you don't have USB though, so I'm not sure what your options would be...
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Old July 7th, 2004, 09:50 PM   #3
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what OS are you using? Is their a DVD player written for your OS? If your on OS X your should be OK, but older OS's are more problematic. I don't think their is a player written for versions of OS 8.x.x
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Old July 8th, 2004, 12:45 PM   #4
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Jeff - I'm on OS9. I have OSX on my main puter, but have just left OS9 on the lap top. I don't use it much unless I have to travel. There is a DVD player program all ready on my puter but I don't have a drive to play a DVD disk and that is the initial problem.

Mark - the USB drive was only mentioned because I saw a ton of them for cheap, and thought it would be an easy way to get a DVD drive. The consumer DVD passed through a camera and firewire was something I had intialy thought of. Unfortunatly I'm using a Canon xl1 and it doesn't allow imput via the RCA's
I would rather just be able to play DVD's, it's an older mac and doesn't hold a lot of memory, so i'd rather not have to download the file onto the harddrive.

The main issue is trying to find a cheaper solution to buying an expansion bay DVD drive.

I guess worst case scenerio; I use a DVD player and track down a TV where ever I go. It's just that's an extra hassel I'd rather not have to deal with.

Thanks guys for your help.
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Old July 8th, 2004, 12:55 PM   #5
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You going to need to find a DVD player, maybe a used one on ebay. If you put it in a FireWire enclosure then you could play DVD's via FireWire into your PCMCIA slot with a FireWire adapter. USB might be too slow with a G3 and the playback might stutter.
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Old July 8th, 2004, 03:00 PM   #6
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Thanks Jeff I'll see what I can find on ebay for a dvd player and firewire casing. I hadn't thought of building what I needed. But your right on the money. What's the saying? If you want it done right...

Thanks
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Old July 8th, 2004, 07:54 PM   #7
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If you search under "Apple DVD drive" you'll find plenty of bare drives. Many go in the $20 to $40 range. Many places sell FireWire enclosures. They run $50 to $100+, just depends on size, construction etc. Belkin makes PCMCIA FireWire adapters for under $50. You ought to be able to put one together for under $200. Later you can upgrade the DVD drive to a burner if you want.
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Old July 9th, 2004, 12:39 PM   #8
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Well, if you have an external DVD player with analog outputs you might find this on ebay:
http://www.psism.com/vc.htm

It's the CapSure PCMCIA card that does both full screen display and 320x240 capture of video. I used to use it when I didn't have a TV in my house (just used the tuner in my VCR)! And then my first capturing/editing from an old VHS video camera and then as a dirty big monitor with my PB G3 and XL1s.... Ah, good times...
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