The Macintosh 6500/250 was one of the last Macintosh models to be released before the advent of the G3 processor. Released in 1997, the 6500 was shipped in a beige mid-size tower case with a floppy drive, a zip drive, and a 4 GB hard drive. On the logic board you'll find a speedy 64-bit 250 MHz Motorola PowerPC 603e processor. You'll also find two 7" PCI slots, and RCA video inputs on the video card. The power supply is a 220 watter. Other fine features include a Farallon PCI 10BT network card and an expansion bay for an optional TV/FM tuner. Along with most Macs prior to the release of the iMac and Blue & White G3, all internal peripheral devices are SCSI, and there's a seperate DB25 external SCSI bus.

One of my least favorite things about the 6500 is the case -- it's next to impossible to get it open. Most of the case is made out of molded plastic and you have to be very careful prying the thing apart. The motherboard is very easy to remove, however: just remove one screw and pull the plastic tabs on the back. This, at least, makes memory upgrades and adding PCI devices simple.

I'm also not wild about the video card. Anyone wanting to take advantage of the video inputs and TV tuner capacity will almost certainly want to upgrade. The built-in video card really isn't very good at all; it has a wimpy 2MB built-in SGRAM. Movie playback is slow and choppy at best. The video card is fair, however, it has subwoofer capabilities and is at least good enough for music playback.

Overall, I'm happy with my 6500/250. It was marketed by Apple as a business machine, and it certainly serves that purpose very well. Be certain to run Mac OS 8.1 or better on will not run the 7.6.1 installer.

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