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Thread: Was the Hex Bus Interface vaporware?

  1. Default Was the Hex Bus Interface vaporware?

    I know ti sold Hex Bus peripherals for the CC-40 & ti-74, but was the Hex Bus Interface for the 99/4a released? I've heard that it was, and that it wasn't. What about the beige Voice Synthesyzer?

  2. #2

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    The Hex-Bus Interface exists (I have a couple of the prototypes from different stages of development), but it was never released. The final prototypes were pretty much feature complete though, so it was pretty close to commercial release at the time TI pulled out of the market. All total there are probably about 30 of them in circulation.

    In the case of the beige Speech Synthesizer, I have a partial case (the top is for the Speech Synthesizer and the bottom is for the Hex-Bus Interface). I have never seen or heard credible rumor of more than that escaping from TI, and I've been a very active TI user/collector since 1980.
    Enter My Mind At Your Own Risk!

  3. Default

    Prototypes are usually out of range of my budget, so I guess I'll go with the black & silver. (I like it better anyway.) Was there ever a third party hex bus interface? Myarc seems to have done everything else. Where is the best place to get information on ti software? I downloaded an old catalog that mentioned the "Press" word processor. It looks great, but for some reason I think they were biased. Was there ever anything comparable to Geos?

  4. #4

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    There are several active TI groups online, including a number of Facebook groups, Yahoo! Groups (somewhat less active of late, but still a very good resource), AtariAge (has a very active TI subforum), and, of course, here. There are also a number of resource websites, including the WHT FTP site (a lot of data there), and 99er.net.
    Enter My Mind At Your Own Risk!

  5. #5

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    I worked in the Home Computer Division, developing the DSR for the Hexbus interface built into the TI 99/8 computer, and also did some maintenance of the code for the DSR for the external Hexbus Interface for the TI 99/A.

    Both reached code complete and several initial "qual build" units were manufactured to test the production process. About 150 TI 99/8 systems were produced (with the Hexbus DSR in ROM) during this run. I'm not sure how many 99/4A Hexbus Interface units were produced.

    Hexbus was released in the TI CC-40 computer and several Hexbus peripheral devices. Several more Hexbus devices were under development, including a 5.25" floppy drive, which also made it to "qual build" stage.

    Internally, we used the heck out of all the released and unreleased Hexbus devices and systems, in an "eat your own dog food" approach.

    In the Fall of 1983, as the IBM PCjr (aka "Peanut") announcement neared, and as home computer price wars raged, TI announced that it would be exiting the home computer business, and all production ceased.

    The Hexbus-based TI 99/8, the Hexbus Interface for the TI 99/4A, the Hexbus Floppy Drive, and several other Hexbus peripherals were never officially released.

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the update on what was where at the time TI pulled out of the market. I actually have a couple of different builds if the 99/4A Hex-Bus Interface, both varieties of the 99/8 (Centronics and Card-Edge expansion bus), and a Hex-Bus floppy drive.
    Enter My Mind At Your Own Risk!

  7. #7

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    I had one of each (99/8, Hexbus Interface, Hexbus floppy drive, etc.), but alas had to part with them to make room for other things.

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