A Modder named ‘Connor55’ opened up and retrofitted a 2002 iMac G4 with an M1 chip. In doing so, he brought the iconic all-in-one G4 back to life, with the same old display but a new heart.
Apple launched the iMac G4 in 2002, and it was way ahead of its time back then. It had an iconic lamp-like design and even received the nickname ‘iLamp’ because of its appearance. The iMac G4 had a 15-inch LCD panel with 1024 x 768p resolution. It was powered by an 800Mhz chip and had 256MB RAM.
But the modern features of this ball-joint mounted iMac began from the RAM itself. Users can choose as much as 1GB of RAM with a factory-installed memory module. It was also equipped with Nvidia GeForce 2 MX graphics, modern by 2002 standards.
iMac G4 with M1 Chip
Coming back to the present, Modder decided to restore the iMac G4 with an M1 chip and posted the entire project in a thread on the MacRumors forum. Connor55 says that the project started when his friend gave him an iMac G4.
He booted it up but realized that the now antique G4 had no WiFi and was excruciatingly slow for everyday tasks. But instead of discarding it, he decided to retrofit it with a Mac Mini. That’s how the iMac G4 with M1 chip came to life.
According to the thread, he was looking for an M1 Mac Mini with at least 16GB RAM and 512GB storage. He was also waiting for the M1 Pro Mac Mini to come out, but Apple decided to give the user-expensive Mac Studio instead. Assuming he got his hands on the Mac Mini, he may have created a thoroughbred retro-modern PC.
Connor detailed that he gutted the internals of the older Mac and followed online guides to complete the process. He posted the thread earlier in January and already had a working prototype when writing this article.
His post has also earned him several subscribers and positive comments appreciating his idea of bringing back an iconic computer from history. Modder himself also appreciated not just the outer shell but the inner design of the iMac G4. He posted in the thread that “they [Apple] really made use of every bit of space here.”