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View Full Version : Appropriate VGA Monitor for an IBM PC/XT



glitch
May 20th, 2010, 07:24 PM
I've got my IBM PC/XT configured with a VEGA VGA card, currently connected to a Dell-branded Trinitron. It'd be neat to have a correct monitor to go with the system (the original 5153 died). I've got one of the VGA-compatibles from the PS/2 line (don't know the model number), but I'm looking for input as to what people might consider more historically appropriate.

vwestlife
May 20th, 2010, 07:49 PM
An IBM PS/2 series monitor would be most appropriate. Although never offered with the XT when it was new, it was entirely possible to purchase a VGA card and monitor from IBM as an upgrade at a later date. The most common models are:

8503 ... 12" VGA monochrome
8512 ... 14" VGA color (0.41mm dot pitch)
8513 ... 12" VGA color (0.28mm dot pitch)

There were larger IBM monitors with higher resolutions, but those are uncommon, and you're probably not going to be running anything higher than standard VGA on an XT anyway.

The 8513 has a sharper display due to the smaller dot pitch, but you may not care too much for its small picture tube, and the 8512 is still entirely adequate and pleasant to look at, even with its larger dot pitch. And if you don't mind monochrome, the little 8503 gives you an excellent "paper white" display.

http://ib1.keep4u.ru/b/070116/15b1c11e2a24db7f93.jpg

glitch
May 20th, 2010, 07:58 PM
Excellent...the 14" color monitor is what I've got for my PS/2 series machines.

I actually have access to a pair of 19" IBM monitors...huge things with special full-length 16-bit ISA driver cards. They're compatible with the RS-6000 series machines. They use 5-point BNC hookups, but are incompatible with most modern VGA cards. I think they do 1280x1024x16.

Unknown_K
May 20th, 2010, 09:21 PM
NEC monitors were popular in the late 80's.

Floppies_only
May 20th, 2010, 09:49 PM
It'd be neat to have a correct monitor to go with the system

The monitors that vwestlife mentioned are brown, too, so they form a good color scheme with the tan IBM computers. IBM did sell a VGA card for awhile, but it's probably hard to find. I'd just use what I could get while I looked for one.

Sean

Raven
May 20th, 2010, 11:36 PM
Excellent...the 14" color monitor is what I've got for my PS/2 series machines.

I actually have access to a pair of 19" IBM monitors...huge things with special full-length 16-bit ISA driver cards. They're compatible with the RS-6000 series machines. They use 5-point BNC hookups, but are incompatible with most modern VGA cards. I think they do 1280x1024x16.

You can modify those.. I have a fixed-frequency 1024x768 HP monitor with BNC that had a cable to convert to VGA, and I modified the cable to change the sync to the modern variety (simple adapter) and used it on my main machine for a few days for gaming. It garbled anything that wasn't at that frequency though, so the BIOS screens and such were garbage, heh.

Basically a modern VGA signal has the Sync mixed into the green line, whereas the BNC has hsync and vsync as their own lines. You have to mix the two signals down into the green line.. there are diagrams available, I don't remember how it was done, but I'm a novice with electronics and I managed to do it. :)

Mike Chambers
May 21st, 2010, 07:58 AM
yeah it's kinda card to say what kind of monitor would "go with it" because (at least afaik) no XT with VGA from the factory was ever sold. i agree with vwestlife though. a PS/2 monitor would fit well with it. i personally just use an older 17" LCD on my XT clone. 4:3 aspect, not widescreen. that would look stretched out. i dont think any 8088 machines can do 1440x900. :D

Raven
May 23rd, 2010, 12:59 PM
My personal choice would be an IBM Professional Graphics Display modified to take VGA in, since it would look roughly the same as if it had the factory original 5151 or 5153 - that's rare as crap, though.

Dave Farquhar
May 23rd, 2010, 01:18 PM
I had an 8503 on my upgraded IBM PC/AT for a while back in the late 90s. They looked good together. So any IBM-branded monitor for a PS/2 would look fine. I also had an NEC Multisync II that I moved over to the AT from my Amiga after I upgraded the AT to a Pentium and gave up on Amiga making a comeback. The Multisync II looked good with the IBM hardware too, though it lacked the IBM branding.

I thought I remembered seeing some companies marketing aftermarket VGA monitors in the same style as the IBM 5151/53 cabinets, but I don't remember the names of any of them. One of those would lack the IBM branding but would capture the mystique--if you were lucky enough to find one. Browsing some really old Infoworlds in Google Books might turn up an ad for one.

Floppies_only
May 23rd, 2010, 02:53 PM
yeah it's kinda card to say what kind of monitor would "go with it" because (at least afaik) no XT with VGA from the factory was ever sold.

But IBM did briefly make an eight bit VGA card that would work in a PC or XT. I think Meuller said that they discontinued it when the PS/2 line came out.

Sean

Floppies_only
May 23rd, 2010, 03:16 PM
My personal choice would be an IBM Professional Graphics Display modified to take VGA in, since it would look roughly the same as if it had the factory original 5151 or 5153 - that's rare as crap, though.

It's interesting that in my email notification you were quoted as saying "My personal choice would be an IBM Professional Graphics Display modified to take VGA in, since it would look roughly the same as if it had the factory original 5151 or 5153." Note the deletion of the part after the dash and addition of a period at the end of the truncated result, making it appear that that was all you wrote.

I really don't like the new version of the forum software. I think the worst part of it is that you don't get links to higher levels than the message you are reading. I used to use that a lot.

Sean

Raven
May 23rd, 2010, 03:20 PM
The worst part to me is that the new forum is inflexible with domain names - if you goto www.vintage-computer.com and goto the forum it works fine - if you goto vintage-computer.com and goto the forum you can't log in and errors come up - if you click the "Forum" button though, it redirects you to www. and it works. I tried to get Erik to fix this by changing the DNS entry for the @ entry to a redirect to the www entry, but he didn't do it - dunno if he saw my message. Forgive the horrible grammar in this post btw, I'm watching a video and my attention is split.