A prototype of an 8 cm CD drive for the PowerBook 5300

A few months ago, I was discussing the PowerBook 5300 and the fact that Apple had planned to offer a CD-ROM drive limited to 8 cm disks. Well, such a drive is now for sale on eBay.

The sale includes a commercially available PowerBook 5300, along with some rarer accessories. Firstly, the CD-ROM drive. It reads 8 cm disks, and the model number is CR-371. Secondly, in one corner of a photo, an Apple MO drive. Magneto-Optical disks allow for reading and writing like a floppy disk, but with higher capacity (230 MB at the time). And thirdly, a pre-production Li-Ion battery. I had mentioned this point long ago: Apple had planned a Li-Ion battery for the 5300, but the brand had to recall the few units sold in 1995 due to fire hazards. In practice, the PowerBook 5300s were sold with NiMH batteries of lower capacity, but without the « free fire » feature. Finally, the listing also includes a prototype charger.

The CD drive

The Li-Ion battery

The charger prototype

In the middle, the MO drive

The seller is asking $1,600 for the whole set, which seems a bit much for accessory prototypes.