Macintosh Quadra 950

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Macintosh Quadra 950
Apple Workgroup Server 95
CPU: 33 MHz Motorola MC68040
RAM Type:30-pin SIMM
Maximum RAM: 64 MiB (Apple), 256 MiB (Actual)
Expansion slots: 040-PDS
5 NuBus
Supported OS: System 7.0.1 - Mac OS 8.1
Introduced:May 18 1992
Discontinued:October 14 1995
MSRP:$8500 (US)
Full Specifications

The replacement for the monstrous Quadra 900, the 950 may not have brought much to the Apple party, but it was still the biggest Mac the world had ever seen.


The launch of the new Quadra series in 1991 had put the power of the Motorola 68040 processor in the hands of mere mortals. While the Quadra 700 had been aimed squarely at the desktop market, the Quadra 900 had been a definite move towards a server machine. Running at 25 MHz it was a fast machine but it didn't take long for it to start to look a little slow in the speed stakes. Seven months later, it was time for a new boy to take over: the Quadra 950.

Still housed in the same gigantic case as the Quadra 900, the 950 was, at first glance, nothing more than a speed bump (upped from 25 MHz to 33 MHz). Whilst in many ways this was true, Apple had also tweaked various aspects of the system, specifically removing certain video wait states, with the end result being a machine that ran about 20% faster than the older model.

Apart from the speed increase, nothing else had actually changed and the 950 was just as expandable as the older model; boasting sixteen RAM slots (allowing a maximum of 256 MiB of main memory), five NuBus slots, more drive bays than was humanly possible to fill, and the twin SCSI bus – with the same 'quirk' whereby the two had to be 'folded' together and share just seven SCSI IDs when using System 7.0.1.

Despite this, the 950 was also released as the Apple Workgroup Server 95. In this flavour, the machine came with an Apple Workgroup Server PDS card installed. Like a range of other machines in the MacII-Quadra series, a stock 950 was already able to run Apple's version of UNIX: A/UX – the special PDS card installed in the AWS95, however, optimized the machine for A/UX by improving on hardware available to the system. The AWS95 PDS or "Pisces" card offered two main advantages. The first was the addition of an external level-2 cache for the Quadra's 68040 (stock 128K on Pisces, but this could be increased to 512k by the addition of special TAG SIMMs). The second capability that Pisces included was the addition of two upgraded SCSI buses, supporting Direct Memory Access (DMA) on these buses (this was to be a feature of the AV architectures of the Centris/Quadra 660av and Quadra 840av, and of the new PPC architecture about to be introduced, but is otherwise unknown on 68k Apple hardware). With the exception of the cache, the card does not function under MacOS, nor are drive attached to it seen by the system, but it allowed marked improvements in throughput and responsiveness in heavy-use A/UX server implementations.

Full Specifications

  • General
    • CPU: 33 MHz Motorola MC68040
    • ROM: 1 MiB
    • Bus Speed: 33 MHz
    • Data Path: 32-bit
    • RAM Type: 30-pin SIMM (80 ns)
    • Standard RAM: 4 MiB
    • RAM Slots: 16
    • Maximum RAM(Apple): 64 MiB
    • Maximum RAM(Actual): 256 MiB
    • Cache: 8 KiB (L1)
  • I/O & Expansion
    • ADB: 2
    • Serial: 2
    • SCSI: 1 (DB-25)
    • Floppy Connector: 1
    • Ethernet: 1 (AAUI)
    • Audio In: Mini-jack
    • Audio Out: 8-bit stereo 22 KHz (mini-jack)
    • Built-in Speaker: Mono
    • PDS Slot Type: 040
    • NuBus Slots: 5
  • Storage
    • Hard Drive: 230 MiB - 1 GiB
    • Hard Drive Type: SCSI
    • Floppy Drive: One 1.44 MiB SuperDrive
  • Video
    • Max Resolution: 512×384 (24-bit), 640×480, 832×624 (8-bit) (24-bit — 2 MiB), 1152×870 (8-bit)
    • Standard VRAM: 1 MiB
    • VRAM Onboard: 1 MiB
    • VRAM Slots: 4
    • Maximum VRAM: 2 MiB
    • Video Out: DB-15
  • Miscellaneous
    • Codename: Amazon, Zydeco
    • Gestalt ID: 26
    • PRAM Battery: 3.6V half-AA
    • Case Style: Quadra 900
    • Dimensions: 8.9" x 20.6" x 18.6" (W x D x H)
    • Weight: 36.8 lbs.
    • Mac OS Support: System 7.0.1 - Mac OS 8.1
    • Introduced: May 18 1992
    • Introduced: October 14 1995
    • MSRP: $8500 (US)

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