PowerBook 5300 FAQ

AlkSoft / Contents / Hardware / PDS/Internal Expansion Cards

2.6) PDS/Internal Expansion Cards

2.6.1) Does the 5300 have an internal expansion slot?

Yes. The 5300 has a PDS connector that allows you to add specialized cards and add functionality to the computer that isn't already built into the motherboard.

2.6.2) What is a PDS connector/slot?

PDS stands for Processor Direct Slot (so saying "PDS slot" is a bit like saying "ATM machine" or "PIN number"). A PDS is a special type of interface that connects directly to the computer's central processor (hence its name). The connector has access to all the signals/pins of the CPU, so theoretically any device plugged into the port can access anything that the central processor can access. A PDS is fairly common in Apple designs. In the 5300, however, the PDS is actually not a true PDS in that it doesn't connect directly to the CPU. Instead, it is connected to a bridged 68030 bus and has more in common with the LC's PDS than it does with a 6100's.

2.6.3) Can I use LC/LCIII/68040/Quadra/PowerMac PDS cards?

No. While some of the connectors might have the same number and type of pins, they all have unique form factors. A card designed for the PowerMac 6100/7100/8100 will not fit into the 5300's connector, for instance.

2.6.4) Can I use PCI/Mini-PCI cards?

No. The 5300 does not have a PCI connector, nor does it have a PCI architecture to support such a connector. PCI or MiniPCI cards cannot be used in the 5300.

2.6.5) Can I use NuBus cards?

No. Although the 5300 is built around a NuBus architecture, there is no provision for the use of NuBus cards. However, if you are an electrical genious, you may be able to study the 610's or 6100's NuBus PDS adapter and build one for the 5300.... I wouldn't hold my breath, though!

2.6.6) What cards can I use in the PDS connector?

As far as I know, there are only two choices for PDS cards. The choices are the Apple external video card or a Focus Lapis video/video-ethernet card. It does seem that at least one other card was prototyped for the 5300. The card was a PowerLogix PowerBoost CPU upgrade that ran up to 130MHz, according to MacSpeedZone.com. The card probably consisted of a 130MHz 603e. I have been unsuccessful in finding any other information about this card.