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Thread: Quadra 950 info needed - Any old skool graphic designers out there?

  1. #1

    Default Quadra 950 info needed - Any old skool graphic designers out there?

    Hello all!

    I'm a newbie here and got my first Mac in 2001 so the 950 is a little before my time. I'm in charge of figuring out how to unarchive a large amount of design files that have been stored on DAT for the last 20 years (hopefully they are still good)

    I was pointed in the direction of getting a 950 which is the machine they were using at this design shop but that's pretty much all I have to start with. I'm assuming that I can get a 950 and load it up with compatible software (photoshop etc) to be able to open the files once extracted from the DAT's but here are my questions.

    1. Which monitor was paired with this machine
    2. Which mouse was paired with this machine
    3. OS 8.1 looks like that was the last OS compatible. Does anyone know which versions of photoshop and illustrator worked with 8.1? Perhaps Photoshop 4.0 or 5.0?
    4. What would I need to extract the data from the DAT tapes to the computer?
    5. Is there an easier way to just extract the files from DAT to a more modern machine? The oldest machine I have is a Powermac G4 running 10.4
    6. Do any of you know the best way to get the files onto a modern hard drive?
    7. Any other bits of advice??

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
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    The first thing you need before you can proceed at all is what software was used to store files to the DAT. If you don't have that information, you can either 1. try all sorts of programs to see if you find one that works, or 2. send the tapes to a recovery service. Can you obtain that information?
    Offering a bounty for:
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  3. #3

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    Thanks Trixter. I'll see what I can find out over the weekend. There are too many tapes to send to a recovery service. It's like 10+ years of files from a print shop plus I'm pretty interested in the challenge

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by onkloud9 View Post
    Hello all!

    I'm a newbie here and got my first Mac in 2001 so the 950 is a little before my time. I'm in charge of figuring out how to unarchive a large amount of design files that have been stored on DAT for the last 20 years (hopefully they are still good)

    I was pointed in the direction of getting a 950 which is the machine they were using at this design shop but that's pretty much all I have to start with.
    Quadra 950 is a red-herring. It's not an essential ingredient in the solution to your problem.

    First order of business is to get a drive to read your tape. An old drive will probably be SCSI, but you may also be able to find a newer USB or Firewire drive that can read your tape. Can you provide any more information about the DAT tape in question?

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    1. Which monitor was paired with this machine
    2. Which mouse was paired with this machine
    3. OS 8.1 looks like that was the last OS compatible. Does anyone know which versions of photoshop and illustrator worked with 8.1? Perhaps Photoshop 4.0 or 5.0?
    4. What would I need to extract the data from the DAT tapes to the computer?
    5. Is there an easier way to just extract the files from DAT to a more modern machine? The oldest machine I have is a Powermac G4 running 10.4
    6. Do any of you know the best way to get the files onto a modern hard drive?
    7. Any other bits of advice??
    1: Any monitor will work, including modern LCD panels when you use a DB15 to HD15 adapter.
    2: Any ADB mouse will work.
    3: OS 8 will crawl on a 950. Use something like 7.5 or 7.6.
    4: Aside from other mentioning the type of DDS drive the tapes want (different generations support different capacities) you need to know what program performed the backup. Retrospect used to be very popular for the Macintosh.
    5: You are restricted to whatever application did the initial backup and if it has any OS X support.
    6: From a 950? You got an ethernet port and Localtalk support. That's about it unless you got a SCSI card in your newer mac.
    7: DAT tapes use the same packaging as DDS tapes but DDS tapes are exclusively for data storage whereas DAT is exclusively for audio recording.
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    Macs in general (1987 - 199?) don't have a default video mode. The cable or adapter selects it. The db15 to bnc cables I have default (by design) to 640 x 480. I also should have (but *do not* know where) adapter/s with vga on once side, Mac db15 on the other. With a set of dip switches to choose what resolution you want to boot into. In those days there were many fixed frequency monitors, so the right cable or adapter was crucial. I can't speak definitively about a Q950. Just keep it in mind.

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    950's were around for a while and there are upgrades to make them PPC plus many Nubus cards DSPs to speed image manipulation in programs like Photoshop. Large fixed frequency monitors were common in that era. Dantz Restropect was common for saving files to DDS tape, and DDS1/2 was common for that era. OS 8.1 was more resource heavy for a 950 but people did use it, 7.1-7.6.1 were more common.
    What I collect: 68K/Early PPC Mac, DOS/Win 3.1 era machines, Amiga/ST, C64/128
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  8. #8

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    Thanks for all the info everyone. If I have to go the route of a 950 I think I have an understanding of what is needed. I would need to figure out is which version of the following apps were compatible with 7.6. I did some more digging and got the following info from the print shop.

    The files were compressed and backed up to DDS via Retrospect.

    The files were originally designed in Photoshop, Illustrator, QuarkXPress and Macromedia Freehand.

    I'd ideally like to expand/unarchive the Retrospect backups and open files in the original applications used to create as well as save them to more current media which I already mentioned.

    The oldest machine I have is a Powermac G4 running 10.4. Do you all think that a USB DDS drive and a Retrospect version for 10.4 might do the trick for getting the data off the tapes?

    Once I have those files unarchived I can figure out how old of a machine I need to get in order to open them. The more current of a machine I can stay on the more comfortable I am navigating but will do what it takes and will probably have fun doing it

  9. #9

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    Thanks for the help everyone. I think I have a good idea of what needs to be done if I go the 950 route. I just would need OS 7.6 compatible versions of the following applications which I got more info on today.

    The files were compressed and backed up to DDS via Retrospect.

    The files were designed in Photoshop, Illustrator, QuarkXPress and Macromedia Freehand.

    It would be ideal to be able extract the files using retrospect on my G4 using a USB or Firewire DDS drive. Once I have those files pulled then I can attempt to see what opens on 10.4 and go back if necessary. Any thoughts whether that might be the best way to go about it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by onkloud9 View Post
    Do you all think that a USB DDS drive and a Retrospect version for 10.4 might do the trick for getting the data off the tapes?
    Possibly, but you should contact Retrospect (they're still around) to get more info.
    Offering a bounty for:
    - A working Sanyo MBC-775, Olivetti M24, or Logabax 1600
    - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)

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