Macintosh LC 575

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Macintosh LC 575
Performa 575-578
CPU: 33 MHz Motorola MC68LC040
RAM Type:72-pin SIMM
Maximum RAM: 36 MiB (Apple), 68 MiB (Actual)
Expansion slots: Enhanced LC-PDS
Supported OS: System 7.1 - Mac OS 8.1
Introduced:February 1 1994
Discontinued:March 2 1996
MSRP:$1700 (US)
Full Specifications

In the shape of the LC series, Apple had managed to strike the perfect balance between performance and price. The introduction of the LC 5xx series, with their built-in 14" colour displays, had proved to be yet another success with customers. The third machine in the series, the LC 575, had to prove that the somewhat lacklustre LC 550 had been nothing more than a slight hiccup.


The launch of the LC 520 had not only breathed new life into the LC series, and the idea of an all-in-one (AIO) Mac in general, but had eliminated one more headache for the less technologically savvy of users: no monitor to buy and set up. The follow up machine, the LC 550, may have slashed the price by a massive $800 but it had hardly pushed the limits of technology – being nothing more than a speed bump from 25 MHz to 33 MHz. Would the third machine, the LC 575, be more than just an increase in MHz?

Just as the LC 520 had 'borrowed' the motherboard from the LC III and the LC 550 had 'borrowed' the motherboard from the Colour Classic II, so too did the LC 575 'borrow' its motherboard from another machine. This time, though, that donor machine was a step forward. Both the LC III and the Colour Classic II had been based on the venerable Motorola 68030 (running at 25 MHz and 33 MHz, respectively) but the Quadra 605 was based on the newer Motorola 68040 running at 25 MHz (albeit the cut-down 68LC040 – a cheaper 68040 minus the floating point unit (FPU)).

This switch in processor technology (along with a "speedbump" to 33 Mhz from the Quadra 605's original motherboard) immediately gave the LC 575 a massive advantage over its predecessors and also allowed it to run System Software up to version 8.1 – the LC 520 and LC 550 were only supported up until Mac OS 7.6.1. Elsewhere the alternative motherboard had the same single RAM slot (N.B. The machine will accept 64 MiB memory modules but only of the single-banked variety. It will not accept double-banked 64 MiB memory) but VRAM could be increased to 1 MiB, rather than the 768 KiB maximum imposed on the earlier design, and the level 1 (L1) cache was raised by 0.5 KiB (512 bytes) to a far more useful 8 KiB.

Normally shipping with 5 MiB of main memory and a CD-ROM drive, Apple also made the machine available to the education market (as with the other LC 5xx machines) but, optionally, with the CD-ROM drive removed and only 4 MiB of RAM (as a cost-cutting exercise).

What users had to ask themselves, however, was did a change in processor and a bigger cache warrant an increase of $500 over the cost of an LC 550?


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Full Specifications

  • General
    • CPU: 33 MHz Motorola MC68LC040
    • ROM: 1 MiB
    • Bus Speed: 33 MHz
    • Data Path: 32-bit
    • RAM Type: 72-pin SIMM (80 ns)
    • Standard RAM: 4 MiB - 5 MiB
    • RAM Onboard: 4 MiB
    • RAM Slots: 1
    • Maximum RAM(Apple): 36 MiB
    • Maximum RAM(Actual): 68 MiB
    • Cache: 8 KiB (L1)
  • I/O & Expansion
    • ADB: 1
    • Serial: 2
    • SCSI: 1 (DB-25)
    • Audio In: Mini-jack
    • Audio Out: 8-bit 22 KHz stereo (mini-jack)
    • Built-in Speaker: Stereo
    • PDS Slot Type: Enhanced LC
  • Storage
    • Hard Drive: 160 MiB - 320 MiB
    • Hard Drive Type: SCSI
    • Floppy Drive: One 1.44 MiB SuperDrive
    • Optical Drive: 1 (optional)
    • Optical Drive Type: CD-ROM (2x speed SCSI)
  • Video
    • Built-in Display: 14" Colour CRT
    • Max Resolution: 640×480 (8-bit)
    • Standard VRAM: 512 KiB
    • VRAM Slots: 2
    • Maximum VRAM: 1 MiB
  • Miscellaneous
    • Codename: Optimus
    • Gestalt ID: 92
    • PRAM Battery: 4.5V alkaline
    • Case Style: LC 520
    • Dimensions: 13.5" x 16.5" x 17.9" (W x D x H)
    • Weight: 40.5 lbs.
    • Mac OS Support: System 7.1 - Mac OS 8.1
    • Other OS Support: NetBSD
    • System Enabler: System Enabler 065
    • Introduced: February 1 1994
    • Introduced: March 2 1996
    • MSRP: $1700 (US)

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