The Performa 5260 was the third PowerPC (PPC) Mac with an integrated monitor, sharing the design of its predecessors, the 5200 and 5300. Although the PPC 603e CPU was superior to the older 601, the computer architecture kept performance of this 100-120 MHz model comparable to an 80 MHz Power Mac 7100.
To save money, Apple based the motherboard on the Quadra 605 with its 25 MHz system bus and 32-bit memory bus, even though the 603e is a 64-bit chip. Apple also used an 8-bit IDE controller for the hard drive. This was the kind of thinking that had crippled the Mac LC with a 32-bit CPU on a 16-bit bus in 1990.
In a step backward from the Performa 6300CD, which predated the 5260 despite what the model number would seem to indicate, the 5260’s 14″ monitor only supports 640 x 480 resolution, not the 832 x 624 of the earlier model with its 15″ display.
Because of its unusual architecture, installing a 25-pin SCSI terminator to the SCSI port (if you have no SCSI devices attached) will improve network stability.
OpenTransport 1.2, which ships with Mac OS 8, solves many network problems.
If you are using a serial printer and no modem, connect the printer to the modem port to avoid network problems.
A word of warning: The serial ports don’t support hardware handshaking, which is required for all modems 9600 bps and faster. You must use a comm slot modem for good throughput.
FWB HD Toolkit is a much better driver for the IDE hard drive than Apple’s.
Be sure to read Performa and Power Mac 5200, 5300, 6200, 6300 Issues. Then you’ll understand why it’s called a Road Apple – we consider it the worst Mac hardware ever.
- Got a NuBus Power Mac? Join our 1st PowerMacs Group.
- Our Mac OS 9 Group is for anyone using Mac OS 9, either natively or in Classic Mode.
- 5260/100 introduced 1996.04.15, discontinued; 5260/120 introduced 1996.10.01, discontinued
- requires System 7.5.3 through 9.1
- CPU: 100 or 120 MHz PPC 603e
- Bus: 40 MHz
- Performance: 49,020 Whetstones
- ROM: 4 MB
- RAM: 16 MB, expandable to 64 MB using one or two 4, 8, 16, or 32 MB 80ns 72-pin SIMMs
- VRAM: not expandable
- Video: thousands of colors at 640 x 480
- L2 cache: optional 256 KB
- hard drive: 800 MB on 5260CD, 1.2 GB on 5260/120
- optical drive: 4x CD-ROM on 5260CD, 8x on 5260/120
- Microphone: standard 3.5mm minijack, compatible with line-level input including Apple’s PlainTalk microphone
- ADB: 1 port for keyboard and mouse
- DIN-8 serial ports on back of computer (modem port disabled when comm slot modem present; printer port disabled when comm slot ethernet card present)
- SCSI: DB-25 connector on back of computer
- Ethernet: AAUI connector on back of computer, requires AAUI adapter
- one PDS slot (NuBus adapter available)
Accelerators & Upgrades
- 5400, 5500, 6360, 6400 motherboard; backplate will have to be modified
- Low End Mac’s Best Classic Mac OS Deals. Best online prices for System 6, 7.1, 7.5.x, Mac OS 7.6, 8.0, 8.1, 8.5, 9.0, 9.2.2, and other versions.
- Low End Mac’s Compleat Guide to Mac OS 9, 2008 Edition, Charles Moore, Miscellaneous Ramblings, 2008.05.12. Declared dead by Steve Jobs 6 years ago, Mac OS 9 remains fast and stable, but Classic software hasn’t kept up with Web changes. What Macs support OS 9, where to buy it, and how to update to version 9.2.2.
- Environmentally Responsible Retirement for Old Macs, Rick Lawson, Pioneers in Mac Development, 2008.06.13. After you’ve scavenged what useful parts you can from your old Mac, what’s the most environmentally friendly way to dispose of the rest?
- Know Your Mac’s Upgrade Options, Phil Herlihy, The Usefulness Equation, 2008.08.26. Any Mac can be upgraded, but it’s a question of what can be upgraded – RAM, hard drive, video, CPU – and how far it can be upgraded.
- Creating Classic Mac Boot Floppies in OS X, Paul Brierley, The ‘Book Beat, 2008.08.07. Yes, it is possible to create a boot floppy for the Classic Mac OS using an OS X Mac that doesn’t have Classic. Here’s how.
- The Compressed Air Keyboard Repair, Charles Moore, Miscellaneous Ramblings, 2008.07.24. If your keyboard isn’t working as well as it once did, blasting under the keys with compressed air may be the cure.
- More G4 upgrade advice, secure disk wipes, 500 MHz iMacs with Tiger in action, and more, Dan Knight, Low End Mac Mailbag, 2008.05.09. The importance of securely clearing your hard drive before you pass on your Mac, Pismo and closed lid mode, G3 iMacs in the classroom, and more thoughts on upgrading G4 Power Macs.
- More crumbling Macs, good news about MacBook Air storage, WiFi options for Classic Mac OS, and more, Dan Knight, Low End Mac Mailbag, 2008.01.23. Also reconsidering the MacBook Air, sometimes USB 2.0 cables are better, Mac switcher mistakes, Intel Mac mini or PowerBook G4, and more.
- Solving Mac Startup Problems, Adam Rosen, Adam’s Apple, 2007.12.12. When your old Mac won’t boot, the most likely culprits are a dead PRAM battery or a failed (or failing) hard drive.
- The 10 worst Macs ever, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2007.10.23. The ten worst Macs of all time – and one of them came out just last year.
- Interchangeabilty and Compatibility of Apple 1.4 MB Floppy SuperDrives, Sonic Purity, Mac Daniel, 2007.09.26. Apple used two kinds of high-density floppy drives on Macs, auto-inject and manual inject. Can they be swapped?
- Apple’s Consumer Performa Line, 1992 to 1997, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2007.09.14. Apple decided to pursue the average consumer by renaming existing Macs, bundling them with software, and putting their colorful boxes in regular retail outlets.
- Restoring PowerBook batteries, MB/GB confusion, upgrading a Performa 6300, Road Apples, and more, Dan Knight, Low End Mac Mailbag, 2007.08.20. Also information on Mac128k.com, the market for a midrange Macintosh, iBook reliability, an alternative to Name Munger, and thanks from a reader.
- Mac System 7.5.5 Can Do Anything Mac OS 7.6.1 Can, Tyler Sable, Classic Restorations, 2007.06.04. Yes, it is possible to run Internet Explorer 5.1.7 and SoundJam with System 7.5.5. You just need to have all the updates – and make one modification for SoundJam.
- Appearance Manager Allows Internet Explorer 5.1.7 to Work with Mac OS 7.6.1, Max Wallgren, Mac Daniel, 2007.05.23. Want a fairly modern browser with an old, fast operating system? Mac OS 7.6.1 plus the Appearance Manager and Internet Explorer may be just what you want.
- Format Any Drive for Older Macs with Patched Apple Tools, Tyler Sable, Classic Restorations, 2007.04.25. Apple HD SC Setup and Drive Setup only work with Apple branded hard drives – until you apply the patches linked to this article.
- System 7 Today, advocates of Apple’s ‘orphan’ Mac OS 7.6.1, Tommy Thomas, Welcome to Macintosh, 2006.10.26. Why Mac OS 7.6.1 is far better for 68040 and PowerPC Macs than System 7.5.x.
- Mac OS 8 and 8.1: Maximum Size, Maximum Convenience, Tyler Sable, Classic Restorations, 2006.09.11. Mac OS 8 and 8.1 add some useful new features and tools, and it can even be practical on 68030-based Macs.
- Customizing Mac OS 9, Nathan Thompson, Embracing Obsolescence, 2006.08.01. Fiddling with themes, picking a browser, and making the Classic Mac OS work just the way you want it to.
- Floppy drive observations: A compleat guide to Mac floppy drives and disk formats, Scott Baret, Online Tech Journal, 2006.06.29. A history of the Mac floppy from the 400K drive in the Mac 128K through the manual-inject 1.4M SuperDrives used in the late 1990s.
- System 7.6.1 is perfect for many older Macs, John Martorana, That Old Mac Magic, 2006.03.24. Want the best speed from your old Mac? System 7.6.1 can give you that with a fairly small memory footprint – also helpful on older Macs.
- System 7.5 and Mac OS 7.6: The beginning and end of an era, Tyler Sable, Classic Restorations, 2006.02.15. System 7.5 and Mac OS 7.6 introduced many new features and greater modernity while staying within reach of most early Macintosh models.
- Web browser tips for the classic Mac OS, Nathan Thompson, Embracing Obsolescence, 2006.01.03. Tips on getting the most out of WaMCom, Mozilla, Internet Explorer, iCab, Opera, and WannaBe using the classic Mac OS.
- The best browsers for PowerPC Macs and the classic Mac OS, Nathan Thompson, Embracing Obsolescence, 2005.12.16. Two browsers stand out from the pack: iCab 3 is modern and remains under development, and WaMCom brings Mozilla to older Macs.
- Why you should use Mac OS 7.6 to get the most out of vintage Macs, Thomas Ahart, The Productive Mac, 2005.12.12. Although you may be able to run OS 8 or 9 on your old Mac, you’ll generally find better performance using Mac OS 7.6.
- The 10 worst Macs ever built, Remy Davison, Insanely Great Mac, 2001.08.06
- PDS Power Macs: Road Apples?, Adam Robert Guha, Apple Archive, 2000.09.29. These Macs aren’t bad, just limited. Here’s how to make the most of them.
- Performa 6300, 5200 questions, Mac Daniel, 1998.10.28
- Performa and Power Mac 5200, 5300, 6200, 6300 Issues, Scott L. Barber, 1997.12.30
- Modem performance using FreePPP and OT PPP on at 5320, Adrian Winnard
- Performa 5260CD Technical Specifications
- Performa 5260/120 Technical Specifications
- Internal HD Format: Cannot See IDE Drives (Apple Knowledge Base 18360) notes that due to changes in the way modern IDE drives are formatted at the factory, early versions of Apple HD SC Setup (ones that come with System 7.5.1 and earlier) will not recognize them. You should boot System 7.5.2 or later and use Drive Setup 1.0.3 or higher with these drives.
- Apple discontinued support and parts orders for this model on 15 October 2001 (22 October in Canada), except in California. You may be able to find dealers with parts inventory either locally or on our parts and service list.
- Macs with IDE hard drive do not provide SCSI termination power, depending on external SCSI devices to provide it. For more details, see SCSI Termination Power.
- On most models, the serial ports do not support hardware handshaking necessary for high speed (9600 bps or higher) modems. However, Global Village Teleport Platinum modems implement handshaking on the modem, providing 28.8 kbps and faster telecommunications. (The final revision of the motherboard does support hardware handshaking.)
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