PDA

View Full Version : A Few 5150 Questions



tempest
March 10th, 2016, 04:58 PM
I may be getting my hands on an IBM 5150. The system has one floppy drive (the other was removed at some point) and I'm not sure what the BIOS revision is. A while back I got my hands on some old XT/AT parts and I thought they would be useful in upgrading the 5150. My questions are:

1. Can the 5150 power supply support an ST-225 20MB hard drive? I think this is one of the later lower power ones so it *should* but I'm not sure.

2. I have two fixed disk controller cards, which should I use?

The first one is this: Xebec (http://www.minuszerodegrees.net/ibm_xebec/ibm_xebec.htm)
The second is this: Fixed Disk and Diskette Drive Adapter (http://minuszerodegrees.net/5170/cards/5170_cards.htm#fddda_2)

As far as I can tell they're both hard drive controllers, but the second one is also a floppy drive card. Can I use that in the 5150 and free up a slot or is that only for the AT?

3. If I want to use my monochrome 5151 monitor, what's the best video card to get? I know Hercules cards are well supported, but I've also heard that some EGA/VGA cards support the 5151 which would be interesting.

4. What's the easiest way to get the memory up to 640K (I assume the one I'm getting will have 256K on the board)? Do you really need two 256K memory cards to achieve that or can one be hacked to support 384K?

krebizfan
March 10th, 2016, 05:25 PM
1) I am not sure about the power supply.

2) The fixed disk and floppy controller is intended for an AT (5170); to use both options requires a 16-bit slot which the 5150 lacks. So you should use the Xebec card.

3) ATI VGA Wonder and a few other cards will support earlier monitors. Rather scarce though. A clone Hercules card is really cheap.

4) Many of the memory expansion cards and multi-function cards were designed to accept 384kB. See for example, AST 6-Pak Plus https://th99.bl4ckb0x.de/i/A-B/52503.htm If you are considering non-IBM video cards, don't restrict your search for memory to IBM.

tempest
March 10th, 2016, 05:37 PM
I'm willing to go with non-IBM cards if they work better. Are any memory cards better than others?

Yeah I've heard that the ATI VGA Wonder (and EGA Wonder) cards are a bit more expensive than the standard Hercules card, but wouldn't those allow me to play more games than a Hercules card? Or will the games that will run on the ATI not really work on the 5150 anyway? I know I've seen some of the early Lucas Arts games running on a 5151, but they were run from an AT. Then again the boxes for those games say they support the 5150.

modem7
March 10th, 2016, 05:44 PM
1. Can the 5150 power supply support an ST-225 20MB hard drive? I think this is one of the later lower power ones so it *should* but I'm not sure.
I would say "may" rather than "should". The power rating of the +12V line of the 5150's power supply is the issue. A related diagram is [here (http://www.minuszerodegrees.net/5160/misc/5160_startup_power_+12V.jpg)].

The start-up +12V draw of the ST-225 is about 28/29 watts. That easily exceeds the 24 watt maximum power rating of the +12V line of the 5150's power supply. There is the +12V requirement of the floppy drive/s to consider as well.

However, maybe the 5150's power supply can tolerate short periods of overload !

Hard drives of 3.5" form factor are a better bet.

modem7
March 10th, 2016, 05:49 PM
The first one is this: Xebec (http://www.minuszerodegrees.net/ibm_xebec/ibm_xebec.htm)

So you should use the Xebec card.
Noting that for the first two variations of that card, use of an ST-225 will result in only 10 MB of the ST-225's capacity being used.

tempest
March 10th, 2016, 06:01 PM
Noting that for the first two variations of that card, use of an ST-225 will result in only 10 MB of the ST-225's capacity being used.

Mine is the third revision



Hard drives of 3.5" form factor are a better bet.

Can you use one of those with this card? Any suggested types?

Chuck(G)
March 10th, 2016, 06:11 PM
Actually, an XTIDE card using a CF drive will consume the least (almost negligible) power. It will also let you keep the original full-height floppy drives.

Great Hierophant
March 10th, 2016, 06:26 PM
IBM was fairly conservative in its power supply ratings. If the power supply can last the 10-15 seconds or so it takes to get the ST-225's spindle motor running at the proper speed, it is unlikely that you will have a problem running it thereafter, as I read modem7's diagram. I think I was able to run an ST-225 in my 5150 without difficulty.

A disk on module is also a good choice for an XT-IDE card. You will not need to use fiddly adapters with one. Just obtain an Ethernet solution like the Xircom PE3-10 series and a parallel card and go to town.

Personally, my preferred 5150 would have something like this :

IBM CGA
Hercules Mono
IBM Floppy
XT-IDE
AST Six Pak Plus

tempest
March 10th, 2016, 07:02 PM
Where can I get a XT-IDE? Are they still made? It sounds a lot like the jrIDE I use on my PCjr.

A CGA card would also be nice. I don't have a 5153, but I have that weird external monitor they made for the portable XT that I think should work.

Stone
March 11th, 2016, 02:53 AM
I've got a Datamedia CGA card if that's of interest to you.

jh1523
March 11th, 2016, 02:59 AM
Where can I get a XT-IDE? Are they still made? It sounds a lot like the jrIDE I use on my PCjr.


He means the ISA CF card, that uses the XTIDE universal bios.
You can buy the PCB here: https://www.lo-tech.co.uk/product/lo-tech-isa-compactflash-pcb/
Then off to ebay or your preferred component distributor to get the items from the BOM https://www.lo-tech.co.uk/wiki/Lo-tech_ISA_CompactFlash_Adapter_revision_2b
And it's easy, through-the-hole soldering.

Stone
March 11th, 2016, 03:35 AM
Why bother with the CF version with all the inherent inconsistencies and problems that CF has to offer when the regular XTIDE card will accept IDE drives as well as DOMs which don't fight back? :-) I have found DOMs to be way more user friendly. They configure just as easily as IDE drives, themselves.

tempest
March 11th, 2016, 05:12 AM
Why bother with the CF version with all the inherent inconsistencies and problems that CF has to offer when the regular XTIDE card will accept IDE drives as well as DOMs which don't fight back? :-) I have found DOMs to be way more user friendly. They configure just as easily as IDE drives, themselves.

I use a DOM with my PCjr and it is nice. The only thing is that CF is easier to write files to on my PC since I have an adapter for it. With the DOM I need to hook up an external power supply and some cables.

My soldering skills are pretty crappy so I think a pre-built one would be better. Are you saying there are multiple versions of this?



I've got a Datamedia CGA card if that's of interest to you.

I might take you up on that. Let me get the system first as I don't know what cards it comes with. My friend said that it 'booted up to BASIC' so it must have some sort of video card in it (I'm guessing CGA because he doesn't have a 5151).

Stone
March 11th, 2016, 05:22 AM
I use a DOM with my PCjr and it is nice. The only thing is that CF is easier to write files to on my PC since I have an adapter for it. With the DOM I need to hook up an external power supply and some cables.

My soldering skills are pretty crappy so I think a pre-built one would be better. Are you saying there are multiple versions of this?There are XTIDE cards with 40 pin headers for connecting IDE ribbon cables or DOMS.

What external power supply or extra cables? A DOM uses a regular Molex power connector.

vwestlife
March 11th, 2016, 05:41 AM
The start-up +12V draw of the ST-225 is about 28/29 watts. That easily exceeds the 24 watt maximum power rating of the +12V line of the 5150's power supply. There is the +12V requirement of the floppy drive/s to consider as well.

However, maybe the 5150's power supply can tolerate short periods of overload !

This is assuming the machine still has its original 63.5-watt power supply. (An easy way to tell is if it's painted black.) In the mid-'90s I obtained an IBM 5150 PC from its original owner and it had a 130-watt XT power supply inside. The machine otherwise appeared to be all original, and did not have a hard drive, so either it came that way from the factory (it was a late production model, made in 1986), or the original power supply failed under warranty and IBM replaced it with an XT power supply.

tempest
March 11th, 2016, 05:53 AM
What external power supply or extra cables? A DOM uses a regular Molex power connector.

Oh I meant when hooking the DOM up to my modern computer so I can download stuff and put it on there. Obviously I don't want to have to crack open my computer to get to a free power plug on the inside each time I want to download a new game.



This is assuming the machine still has its original 63.5-watt power supply. (An easy way to tell is if it's painted black.) In the mid-'90s I obtained an IBM 5150 PC from its original owner and it had a 130-watt XT power supply inside. The machine otherwise appeared to be all original, and did not have a hard drive, so either it came that way from the factory (it was a late production model, made in 1986), or the original power supply failed under warranty and IBM replaced it with an XT power supply.

I might also be getting two 'AT clones' as my friend put it. I wonder if I can grab a power supply out of one of those and put it in the 5150? Then again if they're clones they probably aren't going to have a matching power supply.

Stone
March 11th, 2016, 06:04 AM
Oh I meant when hooking the DOM up to my modern computer so I can download stuff and put it on there. Obviously I don't want to have to crack open my computer to get to a free power plug on the inside each time I want to download a new game.

I might also be getting two 'AT clones' as my friend put it. I wonder if I can grab a power supply out of one of those and put it in the 5150? Then again if they're clones they probably aren't going to have a matching power supply.I can see where CF has an advantage there. But there are other ways (besides CF) to transfer data between computers.

FWIW, AT clone PSUs tend to be good fits for 5150/5160 PSUs. You'll know for sure when you get a look at them. The connectors are the same -- it's only the physical size that's in question.

tempest
March 11th, 2016, 06:07 AM
I guess I'll see when I get my hands on the PCs. Hopefully I can revive one of the AT clones too.

BTW what is the name of the connector type that the ST-225 hard drive uses? It's two ribbon cables instead of the normal SCSI connector. Did they make larger sized hard drives with this connector?

EDIT: Looks like it's either called MFM or the ST-506 standard.

bjt
March 11th, 2016, 06:58 AM
Why bother with the CF version with all the inherent inconsistencies and problems that CF has to offer when the regular XTIDE card will accept IDE drives as well as DOMs which don't fight back? :-) I have found DOMs to be way more user friendly. They configure just as easily as IDE drives, themselves.

The XT-IDE CF board that was linked works fine with DOMs, in my experience.
Not sure if there is actually any difference between CF cards and the commonly available DOMs, other than connector & form factor.

tempest
March 11th, 2016, 07:20 AM
Anyone sell pre-assembled XT-IDE CF (or DOM) boards? I didn't see any on ebay and as I said 'make your own' really isn't an option for me.

KC9UDX
March 11th, 2016, 07:32 AM
If you're not in a hurry, send it to me and I'll send it back assembled.

offensive_Jerk
March 11th, 2016, 07:57 AM
Anyone sell pre-assembled XT-IDE CF (or DOM) boards? I didn't see any on ebay and as I said 'make your own' really isn't an option for me.

I'd be happy with kits. I bought some XT-IDE boards, but trying to source the parts has become a nightmare trying to match discontinued parts and ordering between two different suppliers.

Stone
March 11th, 2016, 08:16 AM
Not sure if there is actually any difference between CF cards and the commonly available DOMs, other than connector & form factor.The difference is some people are having compatibility, configuration and setup issues with CF cards that do not occur with DOMs. That is a major difference.

Chuck(G)
March 11th, 2016, 09:15 AM
The odd thing is that I've been in on this XTIDE and XTCF thing since the beginning and don't recall ever having a problem, save for the AT&T 6300 vagaries, which still can be handled by going to 8-bit mode.

So I'm mystified.

tempest
March 11th, 2016, 09:28 AM
I'd be happy with kits. I bought some XT-IDE boards, but trying to source the parts has become a nightmare trying to match discontinued parts and ordering between two different suppliers.

Hmm... Is that a problem? I honestly didn't look. I assumed the kits came with the components, but are they just bare boards?


If you're not in a hurry, send it to me and I'll send it back assembled.

I might take you up on that offer if I can get all the parts.

offensive_Jerk
March 11th, 2016, 10:08 AM
Hmm... Is that a problem? I honestly didn't look. I assumed the kits came with the components, but are they just bare boards?

The first run was a kit. I bought one of those and it works great. As far as I know, now you're on your own with the components but you can get the boards.

KC9UDX
March 11th, 2016, 11:01 AM
Hmm... Is that a problem? I honestly didn't look. I assumed the kits came with the components, but are they just bare boards?



I might take you up on that offer if I can get all the parts.

OK. I'd be happy to do it.

bjt
April 8th, 2016, 02:40 AM
There's someone on Amibay offering pre-assembled XT-IDE boards:
http://www.amibay.com/showthread.php?81846-Fully-assembled-XT-IDE-CF-adapter!-Taking-orders!

offensive_Jerk
April 8th, 2016, 07:10 AM
I'd be happy with kits. I bought some XT-IDE boards, but trying to source the parts has become a nightmare trying to match discontinued parts and ordering between two different suppliers.

I should probably recant this statement. Since I looked into this last, either the bill of materials lists were updated, or the suppliers got their parts in stock. I don't know enough about IC's to be able to just pick out a substitute so I relied on the BOM a lot.

I just placed orders for parts for two XT-IDE v2 cards, and one XT-CF v4 card. I have had relative ease purchasing the parts from the bill of materials lists. compared to early 2015 when I tried ordering last. I have now built all three cards as of last night.