Design on an Old Mac?

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Ryan Bailey's picture
Joined: 15 Sep 2003 - 1:46pm
Design on an Old Mac?

Recently a generous friend gave me a PowerMac 6500, with a 17 inch Sony Monitor, and an Apple Personal Laserwriter 320 (PostScript, 2 baby!).

The system is in excellent condition, with:
- a clean install of Mac OS 9.1
- 48mb of ram
- 5gig hard disk
- CD rom
- internal zip 100 drive

it all works, too. very reliable! Even the laserwriter. Great output. It’s all been underused.

To me, this system just seems like a prime canidate for dedicating to font development. I’m a college student with very little money, and my G3 is overcrowded with junk as it is, so this thing is a godsend.

Obviously, I can’t run FontLab or even TypeTool on it, so i guess I’m on the look out for an older version of fontographer. (or FL?)

What do you all think? Is this feasable?

I’m a complete newbie to the type design world, so I’m staring from square one. I know Illustrator well, but that’s it. Any suggestions, advice, or help on getting started would be great. I know very little about the mechanics of all this. Once I get things up and running I’ll post some stuff over in the Crit. forum.



Dan Bailey's picture
Joined: 6 Mar 2003 - 10:31am

Totally feasible. Even when I started moving into the G3 area, I was still using my old Powermac 8600 (a pre-G3 processor (the 604e)) to do most of my font design work.

Gerald Lange's picture
Joined: 15 Mar 2002 - 1:22pm


You can get Fontographer at student discount from

If you can upgrade to 9.2.2 you should be able to run both FontLab and TypeTool.

Joe VanDerBos's picture
Joined: 14 Jan 2003 - 11:00am

Look for a version of fontographer on Ebay. Also search for Freehand Graphic Studio which included Fontographer in some versions. Please don’t support Macromedia by purchasing a new version, even an academic one.

Jon Whipple's picture
Joined: 21 Sep 2003 - 11:00am

For and old tech/low cost solution you could downgrade to System 7.x and load RoyalT Apple’s TrueType editor. I don’t know anything other than it’s free. I was thinking about doing this to an old PowerBook 1400 of mine as a lark/experiment, but haven’t gotten around to it yet.

RoyalT is here: (you’ll need to scroll to the top of the page and accpet the license in the first paragraph to download it)

If you don’t have System 7.x disks or CD then System 7.5.3 is here: (you’ll need to scroll down a little from the place on the page that this link lands you).

Let me know how it goes if you decide to (go insane and) do this.