Mysteries of the Griffin iMate USB to Apple ADB converter #Apple #Keyboards
Gus inherited this nice Apple Extended Keyboard II, released in 1990. The keyboard connects using Apple Desktop Bus (ADB) instead of later USB models. Someone on eBay Australia had listed a “Griffin Technology iMate Universal ADB to USB Adapter”.
Confirmed working, reasonable price, and even in the original packaging. But when it arrived, it didn’t work.
The iMate contains an undocumented button cell battery, of type CR1225. The purpose of this battery is not confirmed, as Griffin have never formally acknowledged its existence. The consensus is that it provides the power required to switch on certain Macintosh models via the keyboard, from keyboards with a power button.
The battery is not required (the iMate will operate without it, but without the power-on feature), but when the battery becomes depleted, the iMate may fail to function.
And so goes a deep dive into the construction of the keyboard and the adapter to see what’s going on.
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