Apple introduced the Power Macintosh 7200 on August 8, 1995. The 7200 shipped with either a 75 MHz (7200/75) or 90 MHz (7200/90) PowerPC 601 processor priced at $1700 and $2200 respectively. The 7200/75 was phased out when Apple introduced the 120 MHz 7200/120 in April 1996. My 7200 has a 75 MHz processor and cost $45 to acquire in 2007.

Power Macintosh 7200/75 with cover removed and power supply / drive assembly swung out

The Power Macintosh 7200 is an entry level second-generation Power Macintosh and it succeeded the Power Macintosh 7100. The 7200 is significantly easier to access for upgrade purposes than the earlier 7100. In order to reach the motherboard to replace RAM on a 7100, the platform holding the internal drives and power supply must be removed and it is screwed into the case at two places. The new case design for the 7200 (and its more powerful cousin, the Power Macintosh 7500) lets you swing out the power supply and slot-bay covers so that you can easily add memory and expansion cards. Click the link below to view the process of dismantling a Power Macintosh 7200.

 Taking apart a Power Macintosh 7200

The Power Macintosh 7200 has four RAM slots that can officially accept up to 256 MB RAM. The 7200 uses 168-pin DIMMs with a minimum speed of 70 ns. RAM can be installed independently. Officially, the maximum size of a single DIMM the 7200 can accept is 64 MB. Four 64 MB DIMMs are needed to reach the maximum of 256 MB. Although Apple never officially supported more than 256 MB RAM, many users report that it is possible to install up to 512 MB RAM using 128 MB DIMMs. The cache and RAM buses are 64-bits wide, as opposed to the 128-bit buses of the 7500, 8500, and 9500. Apple did not include a cache card, but buyers could purchase one. Adding a 256K level 2 cache card can significantly improve performance. My 7200 does not have a cache card and has 32 MB of RAM.

A Vectronic's Apple World reader sent us this email on December 5, 2008 concerning the RAM ceiling for the Power Macintosh 7200:

Apple's Hardware Developer Note for the Power Macintosh 7200 actually states that it can address single DIMMs with capacities up to 256 MB for a total capacity of up to 1 GB of RAM. However, as far as I know, no one ever made a 256 MB FPM DIMM so the practical memory limitation is 512 MB.

Jeff W.

The 7200 originally shipped with Mac OS 7.5.2 and it supports up to Mac OS 9. My 7200 is currently using Mac OS 7.6.

"About This Computer" showing Mac OS and RAM

Click to view screen capture 1 - About

Click to view screen capture 2 - Desktop

Click to view screen capture 3 - Floppy Disk

Click to view screen capture 4 - Calculator

Click to view screen capture 5 - Audio CD Player

Click to view screen capture 6 - Memory Control Panel

Click to view screen capture 7 - Monitors & Sound Control Panel

Click to view screen capture 8 - System Overview

Click to view screen capture 9 - Volume Information

Click to view screen capture 10 - Device Information

Click to view screen capture 11 - Control Panel Information

Click to view screen capture 12 - Extension Information

Click to view screen capture 13 - System Folder Information

The two original 7200 models have the same video features, with three available VRAM (video RAM) slots. Both models include 1 MB of onboard VRAM and can be upgraded to 4 MB with the addition of three 1 MB VRAM DIMMs. In their stock configurations, the machines use a 32-bit-wide graphics bus; when upgraded, the VRAM DIMMs interleave to 64 bits wide. The 7200 supports a wide variety of resolutions, beginning at 512 x 384 and ending at 1280 x 1024. As with any Macintosh, available resolutions depend on the monitor being used. My 7200 is using an Apple Multiple Scan 15av Display (M4681). With 1 MB of onboard VRAM it is capable of thousands of colors and three resolutions: 640 x 480, 832 x 624, and 1024 x 768. Adding more VRAM can significantly improve system performance.

The 7200 shipped with either a 500 MB or 1 GB internal SCSI hard drive. It also has a 1.4 MB manual inject floppy disk drive and a 4x CD-ROM drive. The 7200 has an extra 3.5-inch internal expansion bay. My 7200 has a 500 MB internal hard drive. The CD-ROM drive supports playing audio CDs through Apple's audio CD player software and with the addition of the Multiple Scan 15av Display with its stereo speakers, it sounds great.

Power Macintosh 7200/75 CD-ROM drive

The 7200 has the following ports: one ADB, one DB-15 monitor port, one DB-25 SCSI port, one AAUI Ethernet port, one 10Base-T Ethernet port, one serial printer port, one serial modem port, one audio-in port, and one audio-out port. The 7200 omits the high-density AV connector and RCA audio ins and outs that came standard on the high end Macs of the day.

Power Macintosh 7200/75 ports

The 7200 has three PCI slots for expansion. It was one of the first Macs to ship without the older standard NuBus expansion slots that Macs had used since the introduction of the Macintosh II in the late 1980s. As with any new technology, many early adopters worried about the availability of compatible cards and other kinks that often only make themselves known when a new product is shipping since it is impossible to test for every possible combination of hardware, software, and setup. PCI ultimately turned out to be an enduring and widely accepted technology for the Macintosh platform.

The 7200 sits squarely at the bottom of the new PCI Power Macs introduced in 1995. In order to keep costs down on this entry-level system, Apple omitted several options available on its more expensive Power Macs. As mentioned earlier, the 7200 did not have the AV capabilities of the top-of-the-line models. Apple also omitted the CPU daughter card found on the 7500. This makes it difficult to upgrade the 7200's CPU and for many years after its introduction, the only way to increase the processor speed was to swap out the motherboard, a very expensive proposition. It wasn't until 2000 that companies began offering PCI upgrade cards. The Crescendo/7200 sold by Sonnet Technologies was one of the most popular upgrade cards, offering G3 and G4 processor upgrades up to 500 MHz.

The 7200/75 was discontinued in March 1996 and replaced with the 7200/120. Apple discontinued all 7200s early in 1997 with the introduction of the Power Macintosh 7300. The 7200 is a good all-around entry-level computer, but for many years it suffered from the lack of an upgrade path. Apple promised an inexpensive motherboard upgrade, which would turn the 7200 into a CPU-replaceable 7500, but it didn't ship due to demand for the 7500. Apple eventually offered a 7600 upgrade, but it was expensive and rather slow. It was cheaper to buy a used 7500 or 7600. The 7200 has now crossed over into the category of vintage technology and with so many examples in circulation with a plentiful supply of available upgrade options, it is now extremely inexpensive to upgrade the 7200 either through a motherboard swap or third-party PCI accelerator card.

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