PowerBook Buyer's Guide

PowerBook 540

by Steve Hildreth

The 540 is the grayscale equivalent of the 540c. The screen was the first to display 64 grays instead of the standard 16 grays. The 540 also shipped with a 240 MB hard drive as opposed to the 540c's 320 MB. Otherwise the models are identical. Users generally paid between $800-1000 for the upgrade from grayscale to color and gained only 0.2 pounds. The active-matrix screen is bright & sharp and nice for working with text documents, and it consumes less juice from the batteries. However, unless price is a strong consideration, many people will probably opt for the color screen when looking for a 540 on the used market.

Rating:

At the time: A-

Ports:
1 serial
ADB
audio out
audio in
video out
Ethernet
internal modem
1 PDS slot
HDI-30 SCSI

Display:
Active-matrix 64 grays
9.5"
640x480 resolution

Weight: 7.1 pounds

Apple's Specifications:

Logic Board Ports Power
Processor: 68LC040, 66 MHz
PMMU: integrated
FPU: none
Data Path: 32-bit, 33 MHz
L1 Cache: 8K
L2 Cache: none
2nd Processor: none
Slots: modem
ADB: 1
Video: mini-15
Floppy: none
SCSI: HDI-30
Geoports: none
Ethernet: AAUI-15
FireWire:
Mic Type: Line in
Other Ports: Printer, Speaker,
Max Watts: 40
Amps: 1.0/1.5
BTU per Hr: 136.8
Voltage: 100-240
Freq Range: 50-60 Hz
Battery Type: PB500, NiMH
Soft Power: yes
Memory Video Memory
Logic Board: 4 MB
RAM Slots: 1, PB5xx
Min - Max RAM: 4 MB - 36 MB
Min RAM Speed: 70 ns
RAM Sizes: 4, 8, 12, 20, 32 MB
Install in Groups of: 1
Resolution Video Memory
built-in LCD screen
(built in)
Video Memory
512K VRAM (ext. only)
(built in)
512 x 384 n/a-bit 8-bit
640 x 400 n/a-bit n/a-bit
640 x 480 8-bit 8-bit
800 x 600 n/a-bit 8-bit
832 x 624 n/a-bit 8-bit
1024 x 768 n/a-bit n/a-bit
1152 x 870 n/a-bit n/a-bit
1280 x 1024 n/a-bit n/a-bit
Physical Software Storage
Introduced: 5/16/1994
Discontinued: 10/17/1994
Form Factor: PowerBook 520
Gestalt ID: 72
Weight (lbs): 7.1
Dimensions (in): 2.3 H x 11.5 W x 9.7 D
Addressing Modes: 32-bit
Orig SSW: 7.1.1
Orig Enabler: PowerBook 500 Series Enabler
ROM ID: n/a
ROM Ver: n/a
ROM Size: 2MB
AppleTalk Ver: 57.0.4
Mac OS
Supported:
7.1.1
7.5
7.5.1
7.5.3
7.5.5
7.6
7.6.1
8.0
Floppy Size: 1.44MB
Floppy Inject: manual
Min. Int HD Size: 240MB
Int HD Interface: SCSI
Orig CD Speed n/a
Int CD Support: