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Thread: NCR and MicroChannel Clones?

  1. #1

    Default NCR and MicroChannel Clones?

    So apparently NCR (and maybe some other companies?) made MicroChannel clones which is definitely news to me, as I always assumed MicroChannel was an IBM hosted party and that nobody was invited. From what I've found there were four NCR systems that utilized MicroChannel;

    The 3300 and 3350, which were desktop systems...
    ...and the 3400 and 3450, which were server towers with two 486DXs.

    Does anyone have any of these systems and if so, how do you like them? Also, were there any other companies that made MicroChannel systems aside from IBM and NCR, or was that it?

  2. #2
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    There was also the Tandy 5000 MC and a bunch of ALR models plus Dell demoed some MCA clones and Wells American advertised a MCA plus ISA superclone. I don't know if Dell's was released. I think Wells American ran out of cash before development completed.

    Apricot, Mitac, Memorex Telex, Olivetti, and Wang also had their labels on MCA clones but I think some of those were rebadged from other vendors. The Oct 30, 1990 issue of PC Magazine has a lengthy comparative review of a bunch of them. Chance to see pictures at least.

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    I always assumed MicroChannel was an IBM hosted party and that nobody was invited.
    IBM did allow third parties to develop their own machines with the MicroChannel bus however the licensing fees were extremely steep and those who attempted to produce unlicensed MCA machines have been almost completely erased from existance.
    The whole reason EISA came about was an attempt to counter MCA with something (that wasn't really much) cheaper but for the most part it didn't stick.
    = Excellent space heater

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    There were a whole lot more EISA machines built then MCA so it worked out.
    What I collect: 68K/Early PPC Mac, DOS/Win 3.1 era machines, Amiga/ST, C64/128
    Nubus/ISA/VLB/MCA/EISA cards of all types
    Boxed apps and games for the above systems
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    The first 486 was actually an Apricot machine with an MCA bus - VX FT. They made a few others as well.

    An incomplete list:
    - ALR MicroFlex 3300
    - Apricot Qi PCi
    - Apricot Qi 300-80
    - Apricot VX FT
    - Memorex Telex 7270 Intelligent Workstation
    - NCR PC386sx/MC
    - Reply 386SX/20
    - Wang MC350/16S
    - Mitac MPS3000F
    - Tandy 5000MC
    - Olivetti P800
    "Good engineers keep thick authoritative books on their shelf. Not for their own reference, but to throw at people who ask stupid questions; hoping a small fragment of knowledge will osmotically transfer with each cranial impact." - Me

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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknown_K View Post
    There were a whole lot more EISA machines built then MCA so it worked out.
    Does any one have any figures for numbers of machines actually built, rather than models?. I find EISA based servers incredibly rare.

    At one time I had an NCR microchannel desktop. I wish I still had it!.

    I have a PC Server with microchannel and a P390 card.....
    Dave
    G4UGM

    Looking for Analog Computers, Drum Plotters, and Graphics Terminals

  7. #7

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    I had an NCR 486 MCA desktop with a 20” Cornerstone monochrome monitor from a bank with a cash register addon and matched cornerstone 1mb dual head graphics card with 256 “color” emulation

    I sold the machine as a POS system years ago for fair money, shipping was atrocious

    The proprietary graphics were quite speedy for what it was but the dos compatibility of the graphics card was “good” but didn’t look good. I played the windows version of knights chase quite effectively but it would chug when large object got close the to camera view

    The lack of sound is what sunk it for me at the time (back then a 486 wasn’t very collectible) if I had the machine today I might reconsider it for my collection
    I liked the mono screen but actually trashed the last one 2 years ago for the metal and circuit boards (I had 5 of those screens at one time, wish I would have kept one now that I located an ISA graphics card for it)

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    Olivetti MCA machines (source: pocket service guide and other documents)

    M6-520
    M6-540
    M6-560
    M480-60
    M480-40
    M480-30
    P750
    P800
    P500
    M300-25

    Olivetti EISA machines (source: pocket service guide and other documents)

    M6-850
    M6-860
    M6-880
    M6-620
    M486 ESDI
    M486 SCSI
    CP486
    LSX5010
    LSX5015
    LSX5020
    LSX5025
    LSX5030
    LSX5040
    SNX 140
    SNX 140/R
    SNX 160
    SNX 160E
    SNX 60/R SYSTEMA
    SNX 160/RS SYSTEMA
    SNX 200/400/RS
    SNX 200/400/RM SYSTEMA
    NetStrada 5000
    NetStrada 7000

    (All SNX & Netstrada are EISA+PCI)

  9. #9

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    Leading Edge made the Model D3/MC. I have an Adaptec AHA-1640 out of one.

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