Centris 650

Creating a midpoint between the Mac II line and the Quadra series, the short-lived Centris models were introduced in February 1993. The Centris 650 uses the same chassis as the IIvxIIvi, and Performa 600.

Macintosh IIvx

Some models came with a 68LC040 (no math coprocessor), only 4 MB RAM, and no ethernet. Most use the full 68040 and have ethernet, as well as 8 MB of motherboard RAM.

“Going along with the auto-marketing trend toward meaningless names that sound important, Apple’s new Centris line will serve as the company’s mainstream, midlevel computers.” MacUser, April 1993 (Apple names included Quadra, Performa, and Centris.)

The 650 introduced a higher speed SCSI bus to the Macintosh line as well as accelerated internal video. It also used interleaved memory to squeeze out about 10% more performance. All this made the Quadra 700 obsolete; the 700 was dropped from Apple’s lineup with the Centris rollout.

The Centris 650 and Quadra 800 were the first Macs to ship with a bootable CD-ROM.

The floppy drive mounting sled used in the IIvi, IIvx, Centris 650, Quadra 650, and Power Mac 7100 can also be used for a hard drive if you no longer need the floppy drive.

Apple earns a Road Apple for the Centris name, which was discontinued after 9 months. Despite that, the Centris 650 is an excellent value on the used market, especially versions with ethernet and the full 68040 processor.

See our NuBus Video Card Guide for information on adding a video card.


  • introduced 1993.02.10 at $2,700; replaced by Quadra 650 1993.10.21
  • requires System 7.1 or later; highest version supported without a PPC upgrade is Mac OS 8.1.
  • CPU: 25 MHz 68040 or 68LC040
  • Performance: 12.0, relative to SE; 0.99, Speedometer 4; 22 MIPS
  • 4009 Whetstones
  • 16,077 Whetstones with 50 MHz PowerPC 601 upgrade
  • ROM: 1 MB
  • RAM: 4 MB or 8 MB on motherboard, expandable by 128 MB using four 80ns 72-pin SIMMs; motherboard had 4 SIMM slots which can be filled individually but should ideally be filled in neioghboring pairs to take advantage of interleaved memory; can use 4 MB, 8 MB, 16 MB, and 32 MB SIMMs
  • video: 512 KB VRAM, expandable to 1 MB
    • 512 x 384 @ 16-bit
    • 640 x 480, 800 x 600, 832 x 624: 8-bit @ 512 KB, 16-bit @ 1 MB
    • 832 x 624, 1024 x 768, 1152 x 870: 4-bit @ 512 KB, 8-bit @ 1 MB
  • L2 cache: optional, PDS
  • ADB ports: 2
  • DIN-8 serial ports: 2
  • SCSI: DB-25 connector on back of computer
  • Hard drive: 80, 230, or 500 MB
  • NuBus 90 slots: 3
  • one PDS slot
  • size (HxWxD): 6.0″ x 13.0″ x 16.5″
  • Weight: 25 lbs.
  • PRAM battery: 3.6V half-AA
  • Gestalt ID: 30
  • addressing: 24-bit or 32-bit
  • upgrade path: Quadra 650, Power Mac PDS card, Power Mac 7100

Accelerators & Upgrades

Accelerator Reviews

Online Resources


  • Apple discontined support and parts orders for this model on 2001.10.15 (2001.10.22 in Canada). You may be able to find dealers with parts inventory either locally or on our parts and service list.
  • You must have a “fat” system installed to use a PowerPC upgrade.
  • Serial port normally restricted to 57.6 kbps; throughput with a 56k modem may be limited. See 56k modem page. For more information on Mac serial ports, read Macintosh Serial Throughput.

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