I have researched this issue and it appears that everyone has a different opinion on how to fix it and what the root cause is... Mine was working perfectly, I bought the new 24" and layed on the closet for 6 months. When I tried to use it again, this time nothing happend: no fan, no screen... First I changed the battery (that did not resolve the problem); then I press the button for memory reset (yes, only once), that did not work either. I ordered a power supply, changed it and that did not help either. Please, help, I have most important documents in it (after I migrated everything to the new iMac I added some stuff) and I need access to them. Any thoughts??
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Re: IMac G4 completely dead!
It sounds like you may have tried this already, but I'm not sure.
Unplug the computer, disconnect the power supply form the logic board, and remove the battery completely. Let it sit this way overnight. Reassemble it and try again. It dissipates latent electricity from the board.
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Are you sure the iMac is really shutting down or just turning off the backlight? The tell-tale sing would be to let the unit fully boot-up (wait 3 minutes) and the press the button the apple keyboard that ejects the CD-ROM. If the CD-ROM door opens, you iMac is running with disabled or broken backlight.
The inverter circuit on the iMac G4 is known to be weak.
There could be another problem, though. The iMac G4 is also known to have weak internal power supplies. Here's how you can tell:
Hold down the CMD OPT "O" and "F" keys at the same time while pressing the power button. This will tell the iMac that you want to boot into the Open Firmware shell, bypassing the Mac OS X startup. If this works, your power supply is good, the inverter is good and you have a problem with your Open Firmware boot string. To fix the boot string, Power on the unit while holding down the keys CMD-OPT-P-R to zap the parameter RAM (PRAM) and reset everything to defaults.
If you were not able to boot into the Open Firmware shell, your problem is either a failed power supply or a failed screen backlight.
The last possible culprit is your iMac could suffer from "Bulging Capacitor Syndrome", where a batch of iMac G4s, iMac G5s another electronics were fitted with a bad batch of capacitors. Eventually, the caps will rupture and cause irreparable damage to the logic board. Only way to verify this is to pull the unit apart and visually inspect. If you see little green or blue cylinders that seem to be bulging or oozing a thick oily goo, that's your problem. Only recourse is to shop around on eBay and look for a replacement logic board.
It can not find the hard drive or the startup folder on the hard drive. Try and fix that by putting in the original boot cd/dvd and repair and choose your hard drive start up folde as boot device. If you can not your hard drive may have died.
If your iMac is an Intel Core 2 Duo running Leopard, it's certainly not a G4.
From the symptoms described, you have either a bad LCD panel or a bad LVDS cable. Either way, what the tech told you is wrong. They can both be replaced. Whether it is cost-effective or not is for you to decide.
The power supply is part of the motherboard in the iMac G4, so it's hard to change it. The repair would certainly cost more than the price of your iMac.
You can try to take off the small battery, and reboot it to see if it changes.
To open the mac lay it down, screen on the table (on a t-shirt). Unscrew the four screws (they wont come out, so just unscrew them. Pull the screws and take off the silver plate. Then you'll have access to the inside.