iBook G4 Open Case Surgery

by Scott Chitwood • Sunday December 7th, 2008
Posted in More Than Words

It wasn’t so long ago (just last month to be exact) that I had mentioned our iBook G4 was “roasted and toasted”, and as such we made the decision to upgrade to an early 2008 MacBook Pro. And boy howdy, I’m quite pleased with the new toy! Shortly after receiving the MBP my thoughts turned to attempting a repair of the iBook.

The unfortunate story behind the iBook was its performance history; four trips to the repair center through AppleCare related to logic board and DC-In board issues along with less than stellar power cord connectors were constant issues for us. After sitting idle for the better part of year we purchased a replacement battery along with a third party charger. The DC-In board promptly went belly up two days later. Again we left it idle.

But where to acquire and how to replace the DC-In board? I had no idea other than to strike up the issue with a local Mac reseller to see if they did in-house repairs on laptop systems. That was the plan anyway, then karma intervened and I ran across a link to iFixit that had just the part we needed and a great set of instructions for tearing down the iBook and replacing the DC-In board.

iBook G4 DC-In Board

Awesome! This was just the motivation I needed to dig into the project. And why not, it certainly didn’t look any more difficult than accessing the lower RAM slot in a Bondi Blue iMac G3.


  1. pharmagician
         December 7, 2008

    I replaced the hard disk in my old iBook G3 a couple of years ago – Apple do pretty much everything to make you think that it’s not possible, but I found instructions on the web, was lucky enough to have a second, completely defunct iBook from a friend that I could do everything on first to see how. A triumph…!

  2. ralf
         December 7, 2008

    I changed the hard drive of my old G4 PowerBook once, but no matter how good the instructions are, you still need a dentist-like tool to unhook a latch from the *inside* of the case, before you can open it… I had a whole electronics lab at Caltech at my disposal when I did this, and it still took me 2 hours to get the darn thing open, and after that my PB aluminum case was scratched and bent out of shape like some piece of artillery shrapnel. Not trying that again. Wonder how it works with the new unibody enclosure?

  3. Scott Chitwood
         December 8, 2008

    That would be the “spudger” tool. Made sure to grab one of those when ordering the part but even so, iBook plastic housing is much more forgiving that Power Book aluminum — that must have been quite the nightmare for you!

  4. paulk
         December 8, 2008

    Ah, the “spudger” tool! And the putty knife that’s required to pry open the Mini…

    Then there were the really good old days of opening up Mac Pluses to add tiny amounts of expensive RAM. And having to be careful of the infamous flyback transformer or get tossed across the room from the shock! My God, I’m dating myself…


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