Micron Xceed for Mac SE/30

Here is the quick scoop on the wonderful internal grayscale video setup from Micron or Xceed.

The video card identifies itself as a “Micron Xceed 3MT” in the Monitors control panel (with an external monitor attached so the Monitors control panel sees the card).

I will have to check again (I’m on my favorite Mac Plus right now) as to what it says about the internal video from the card.

My card is an older Micron video card. All Micron products for Mac where either sold to, or turned into, another company a number of years ago. The new company is called “Xceed Technology” (hmm, the Micron card is called Xceed too). I saw an old ad and called about the SE/30 video card with internal gray, even though I already had a Micron card inside the SE/30 (really wanted gray scale on the go, not just at home).

I was told that the Xceed SE/30 card was long out of production, and that all stock was gone, but they still had some of the gray scale adapters. I was advised to get them the numbers on my card itself – this is where they explained that they are the Mac Micron products. Some of the old Micron cards had an extra plug on them. This plug, kinda like an internal HD or floppy plug, except shorter (less pins) was what the adapter hooked to, and the last produced adapter (the one they still had some stock of) would work on a number of these cards. The part number, serial number, and having the plug soldered on the card would tell them if my card could use the internal gray scale adapter.

A little about installing this adapter. The adapter replaces the CRT board with its own (which works with both the internal video and the card gray scale video). The wire tangle to hook everything up (one harness) replaces the cable from the motherboard to the analog board, the internal video cable, and hooks to the card. Fortunately all the plugs are different sizes. This harness has 5 plugs (2 to the analog board, 1 to motherboard, one to the Micron card, and one to the replacement CRT board), and two ground screws. It’s a pain to get everything plugged in as the harness has those ferrite tubes around parts of it, and you need to keep fingers away from the high voltage.

Once installed, everything works great. The setup is smart: it knows whether you have an external monitor or not, and remembers the settings both ways (which monitor to start on, display the menu bar on, and color settings). There is a slight bug, if you open the General Controls control panel (in System 7.1) the Finder (only the Finder, not your programs) will forget that its in grayscale. Opening the Monitors control panel will remind it again. I was also told that you needed to keep using the Monitors control panel from System 7.1, if you wanted to upgrade to System 7.5. The System 7.5 monitors control panel won’t see the internal gray scale option. There is no Micron or Xceed software to install to make all this work. This card is also works fine on system 6.0.7 or 6.0.8, if you install the extension “32-bit Color QuickDraw” (without that you cannot have more than 16 colors or grays in system 6).

The documentation that came with the card was dated as a 1991 printing, it referred to the company as Micron, not Xceed. I purchased the card in June of this 1997. The phone number for Xceed is (810) 598-8003.

– Paul Gooch