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Thread: waffling over buying an Amiga 500

  1. #1

    Default waffling over buying an Amiga 500

    I used to have a 600, didn't use it much. I still have the 1084s, which has gone up a lot in value (actually maybe I got that with a Commie 12. I have as a project the rebuilding of a TT030 motherboard. I swore I'd avoid Amigas from that day forward, choosing to rather concentrate on Ataris (and Sega Genesis). Basically forsaking the Macintosh, for the most part, also. There are some aspects of the Amiga I despise, like interlaced video modes. Don't try to convert me, there are few things I loathe more then interlaced video. Whoever designed it that way should be drawn and quartered. Ok but I'm still and always will be a Commie fan, I've had more 64s then I could count, and 2 128's. And then there's the Amiga.

    Anyone want to discuss or contrast the Amiga with the 1040ST, and also speak to the various motherboard revisions.

  2. #2
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    You don't have to use interlace mode... I normally don't.

    I wouldn't buy an A500 unless you are just nostalgic about it like some are. Otherwise I'd buy an A1200. There's just so much more you can do for less money.

  3. #3

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    I modded an A520 modulator to get S-Video from it, routed this to a chead chinese S-Video->VGA adapter and connected the chain to a LCD capable of showing 15Khz. If you meet all the requirements you'll change your mind about the interlaced modes

    Of course, not all 15Khz compatible LCDs work fine with direct connection of Amiga's interlaced modes, in fact some of them show a really shitty image; but using the chinese adapter things change dramatically.

  4. #4

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    I'm not trying to sound ungrateful, but neither comment answers my questions. Big poopy heads.

    Ok though. What can a 1200 do that a 500 can't? They both have 68ks, no? I am nostalgic about the 500 in an anachronistic sort of way (never had one). I like the form factor if you will. Of course a 2000,3000, 4000 would be optimal. It's a question of how much money I really need (or have) to spend on something I'm not exactly devoted to. Like them though.

    and I know I don't have to use interlaced mode. That's what flicka fixas are fer. I even have a cheap Asian one now.
    Last edited by 2icebitn; July 31st, 2018 at 03:09 AM.

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    The one thing I warn people about when they want a 500 is that while it's marginally better than the 1000 it's still a device that unless you are okay with booting from floppies, any and all the upgrade paths are expensive.
    = Excellent space heater

  6. #6

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    I was told many many moons ago that a 500 can take a standard 2.5" hard drive ide hard drive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2icebitn View Post
    I was told many many moons ago that a 500 can take a standard 2.5" hard drive ide hard drive.
    Certainly not in stock form. There are no hard drive interfaces in the 500. I believe there were some IDE drive systems that were made for the Amiga 500 expansion port.

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    Yes. I've had ST506, ESDI, SCSI, and IDE interfaces for A500. They were expensive new and are probably hard to find now. They won't perform like hard drive controllers designed for big box Amigas, though you can usually use them with one when you upgrade (don't bother: if you get an A2000 get an A2091). Most of them won't work with large drives (think hundreds of Mb).

    Don't think of what Amigas can do based on the microprocessor. Amigas are more like a custom CPU, made of many processors. The 68k is the least important. A newer/faster 68k is just faster.

    You can upgrade an A500 to almost be an A2000. You just can't have (reasonably) a video slot. But you get very expensive very quickly.

    Different motherboard versions are not important in the A500. The only real difference to you is knowing which one you have when you do upgrade it. The newer one you get the less you have to worry about.

    The A1200 has AGA (an A500 has OCS which you can upgrade to ECS). It has a built in IDE controller. It has a much more supported upgrade path (even though it's more hackish!). Expansions are cheaper and more plentiful.

    Not using interlace mode is not about flicker fixers. It's about never selecting that video mode. Nothing that you're likely to run on an A500 uses it.

  9. #9

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    The Amiga 500 motherboard revisions are mostly unimportant until you get to revision 6.2 and above, which could take 1mb or 2mb of RAM directly on the motherboard and came with an Agnus graphics chip that could address that memory. Revision 8 also came with a revised Denise chip and was called the A500 Plus.

    The Revision 8 boards with Denise can output a flicker free high res screen (productivity mode) if you have a monitor that can handle 28hz refresh. It is a great way to slow your Amiga down to the speed of GEOS on an unexpanded Commodore 64.

    Earlier revisions took 512k only and you had to add a 512K board to get 1MB, but technically only 512K of it counted as Chip RAM.

    Extra chip ram is useful for working on animations, large sound samples, and running games with WHDLOAD (a utility that lets you run cracked, floppy only games from a hard drive).

    If you don't plan on adding a hard drive (which requires adding either an internal or external controller and drive) and don't plan on using WHDLOAD the extra chip ram really isn't necessary.

    The 1040ST is a neat machine. I am an Amiga guy, but the Atari folks had some great ideas. It has the OS in ROM so you don't need a boot disk. It has MIDI ports for music, and hard drive port for adding a hard drive. The hardware architecture is simpler than the Amiga's, but elegant in its own right. The downside is fewer colors, no sprites, and no multitasking on the Atari unless you load a 3rd party OS.

    If you are planning on getting an NTSC system, there are more Amiga NTSC games than PAL. I don't know if that holds true for PAL.

    The Atari had a flicker free 640x400 mode, but you had to buy a monochrome monitor to support it. If you wanted color, it only worked in lower resolutions and required a different monitor.

    The Amiga 500 is easier to accelerate with lots of modern options available.

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