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PowerBook A1106 and MacBook Pro A1211 interchangeability

I’ve got this PowerBook G4 restoration/upgrade project going but good parts are hard to come by here in New Zealand so I was wondering: can I use parts from the early 2006 MacBook Pro Aluminum?

Bottom case is definitely different but pictures posted on iFixit guides suggest that the top case+keyboard are similar - even the keyboard ribbon looks the same - and maybe the display could be interchangeable as well... does anyone ever attempted this sort of ‘transplant’? :)

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I have both a 2005 PowerBook G4 DLSD/HR and a 2006 MacBook Pro. While they look similar, none of the parts are interchangeable. The dimensions are slightly different, as the MacBook Pro is a tad wider than the PowerBook. Even if you cut down the edges of a MacBook Pro keyboard to somehow fit, the trackpad is still a different shape and would not function with the powerbook, and I doubt the keyboard would either. The displays are different shapes, the powerbook display is 60 pixels taller due to the MacBook Pro having a webcam while the PowerBook doesn’t, Your best bet is to buy parts computers off of eBay, or go down to a local tech thrift store or recycling center, as people are still getting rid of their old ones. These are fun computers to play with, and I have found that even on 10.5 Leopard they are still somewhat usable. Good luck!

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Now that was helpful thank you! :)


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Carlos Ferrari  “turn this into a p!ss!ng context “ I don’t think so. Remember, advise on here is always free and you can take it however you see fit. Could be an interesting project for as long as you know that you may have some machining etc. to do to get things somewhat to fit. Dremel tools will be your friend! Anyhow, not to many parts that are fully compatible. From the exterior, the MacBook Pro has a similar look to the previous aluminum PowerBook computers. However, as far as major part compatibility only the power cord and power adapter AC plug are the same. It is always possible that ribbon cable etc will suit your purpose since there may be some connectors that allow some interchange. Take a look PB_G4MBP06

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The last PowerBook A1138 was released in 2006 same year as the first MacBook Pro A1211. I'm sure the logic boards are different but that doesn't mean some connectors can't be similar and parts interchangeable.

That being said it doesn't mean it will work for me as my A1106 was released on 2005… Regardless I can't know for sure until I get my hands in one A1211 or hear from someone who had that experience everything else is speculation…

Thanks for the PDFs I'll have a look :)


Hope you do well , Carlos. I'm watching. Wanting to know if I can use an a1106 topcase with an a1138.

And Yes We do from time to time get trolls who have vast amounts of knowledge that just come on to kick the cat.

I can have all the knowledge in the world,but If I don't have the Wisdom on when to open and shut my mouth, it's useless.

As for those that are 'in the know' many petrolheads both restore AND modify classic,vintage and veteran vehicles. Additionally, the ppc tenfourfox browser is up-to-date and secure as the latest Firefox. Of course my corrections are as ot as the first catkicker here....

Have a pleasant day!


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Sorry to say I think you’re just jumping from the pan to the fire here ;-{

I strongly recommend you just bite the bullet and focus your efforts on a newer model than either of these. Even if you were able to make this frankenstein system the OS it would run won’t run most of todays apps and it would not be smart using it online either.

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I do have newer models (plural ^^) but I happen to like this PowerBook - from the keyboard feeling to the design to the challenge of making it work almost 15 years after it was released...

The project is to make it look good as I find that the functionality itself is quite ok - not the best but it works just fine for what I want and that’s alrigh.

As for being smart using online I could argue that no online activity is ‘safe’ without VPN regardless of how old is the system. But I also could install Linux in it why not...

Anyway like I said I just want to restore the thing. If I get lucky and find the proper parts great but if I don’t I would like to know if there are alternatives that’s all. Plus if you check my other posts here you’ll see that there’s a McGyver pattern and that probably says a lot :)


A VPN does not make you safe! It only prevents someone from snooping into your dialog. If you access a compromised web site with or without a VPN connection you are still compromised! I was only speaking about the OS-X needed to be used on this series being swiss-cheese from a security perspective You also have the fact Safari in these older OS's don't support HTML5 as many web pages are not going to work. I would strongly recommend you go the Linux if you are going forward here.

If you are going forward here you'll need to get a set of schematics for both systems as well as board views so you can compare things. Knowing Apple I don't think this is a plug and play setup. Apple tends to reuse connectors running different signals across the difference series.

Bottomline you're on your own as I doubt anyone has ever done this and you'll likely sink a lot of time & money into making this work.

If you are really serious, I would look at designing a logic board that physically lines up within the case and has the connections of the Powerbook but the logic if all from a MacBook Pro carefully transplant all of the components to your new designed logic board. I would guess it will cost you a good 5k to do that and hundreds of hours of time.


So... am I supposed to engage and turn this into a p!ss!ng context where:

1) you fixate on arguing about what is or ain’t safe online expecting me to counter what you said regardless of having nothing to do with the original post;


2) you extrapolate what I said beyond common sense to try and ridicule my intentions on using something I want to have regardless of needing it or not.

Here’s the thing: a car from the 60s/70s is unsafe to drive by today’s standards and probably much more uncomfortable than a late 90s sh*tbox but none of that would stop people from wanting a vintage muscle car because they love it regardless of their shortcomings.

Why can’t I have a vintage computer regardless of its shortcomings without having people ranting that I should burn it and get over it?

Even if it were a 1984 Macintosh - pretty much useless for anything - what’s the problem of wanting to have one and wanting to make it work and try to restore to make it look good?


No contest here!

Just someone who's been fixing systems for over 35 years. During the summer I had two customers with older Duo2Core systems with older OS's having their systems being ransomed by malware! Having to pay $500 to get to their own HD as it was encrypted remotely! Which is why I gave you the warning.

As for what car enthusiast do to keep their classic cars on the road most make the effort to restore not modify. I agree with that philosophy! At least your system might be a collectable at some point if its still working! Just look at the Apple 1 systems being sold who would had thought! Would you have bought one if the person had mangled up the logic board? Not likely.

I still have my 128 Macintosh in the original travel case. Its one of the first 250 sold.


I've seen people getting Sierra mangled by malwares and the only time I had any issues was when I got my first Mac and was learning how to use it - which is probably what happened with this people as well.

Nothing is safe if you don't know what you're doing is not just a matter of what system you got.


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Carlos Ferrari будет вечно благодарен.
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