Ancient iMac G4 Transformed Into an Apple M2 Powered Mac by YouTuber

The 20-inch iMac G4 was first released in 2002 and over 20 years later is now considered a vintage Apple product. It is in no way usable for modern tasks, but someone recently went as far as to revive the classic Mac and bring it back to life.

YouTuber Action Retro is the one with enough skills to do that, as he dissembled the iMac G4 and installed an Apple M2 Mac Mini board inside of it. The results are pretty wild, seeing modern macOS running on the beautiful hardware, almost flawlessly.

As seen below, the 16-minute-long video is a pretty interesting fan if you’re a fan of the iMac G4’s iconic swiveling adjustable screen, dome-shaped base, and plastic look. Action Retro spent a lot of time showing how the process can be done by swapping out the original guts of the Mac while keeping the original 20-inch display. It involves using a custom and brand-new drop-in replacement board for the Mac, created by the folks at Juicy Crumb Systems. Using the board, and plugging in some of the iMac G4’s original cables, the YouTuber was able to use the iMac G4’s display as a HDMI input. He connected the Mac Mini M2, a Steam Deck, and a Windows PC externally to the display. The process is fully reversible, too.

Of course, that’s only using the iMac G4’s display for the Mac Mini externally, but with a little extra work, the YouTuber was able to make things permanent. With some soldering, adding firmware to the board, and removing the guts of the iMac G4, the Mac Mini’s modern board with M2 chip almost perfectly fits inside of the classic iMac. The board essentially sits in the space formerly occupied by the optical drive, but there are a lot of extra cables, a separate power for the M2 Mac Mini, and wiring that had to be added to make it look like an M2-powered iMac G4.

It is amazing to see vintage Apple hardware running modern macOS. Web browsing, gaming, and other tasks bring the iMac G4’s display to life like never before. Of course, not everyone has the skills to do this, but it is a good way to revive otherwise long-dead hardware.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

WIN an iPhone 15 Pro Max!

Enter our epic giveaway for a chance to win the latest iPhone 15 Pro Max!