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Thread: 5150 with Hercules - Text but no graphics

  1. #1

    Default 5150 with Hercules - Text but no graphics

    Recently acquired a 5150 with Hercules GB100 card in place of the IBM MDA. I've run the IBM Diag v2.2 tests on the system, and all checks out good except for the Video Card (option 1) and Video Sync (option 12). Everything text based looks nice and crisp. The Video graphics tests show a distorted/wavy blob. Trying to run any IBM PC compatible game results in a blank screen. Also ran a copy of IBM Diag v1.x, and as soon as it booted, it looked like it was torturing the display. Guessing that diag version starts with some sort of graphic.

    The Hercules card has 2 electrolytic capacitors, and I'm wondering if they have given up the ghost and need replacing (see pics). Neither is particularly bulging or gassing, but they both have a blue hue on top which makes me think the electrolyte has evaporated. I don't have another monitor to test with (not my first choice to be the problem child anyway). Am trying to dig up a different video card and see if it makes a difference.

    Anyone ever seen this behavior with a Hercules and/or 5150?

    Herc Cap1.jpgHerc Cap2.jpgHercules.jpg
    Last edited by normanator; August 1st, 2019 at 07:08 AM.

  2. #2

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    First of all, congratulations on an early-model 5150 with the black PSU! Also never seen a Hercules card with a wide, black backplate for an early 5150.

    Keep in mind that games have to be Hercules-compatible or they won’t work. Also, IBM’s own diagnostics don’t support Hercules.
    Compaq - “It simply works better”

  3. #3

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    Never had a Hercules before, so that didn't occur to me. Thanks! I'll definitely test that route before disturbing the board with new components. I've not seen such an early Hercules either.

    And yes, very serendipitous find of a nice Series A 16/64 mobo system. Has the middle 5700671 BIOS. Came with 5151 monitor, matching keyboard and the boxed docs and disks (Diag, DOS, Basic). Very clean unit inside and out with no cracks, scratches or blemishes. Also came with a Mouse Systems optical mouse (M2 I think) along with the reflective mouse pad. Very cool!

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by normanator View Post
    Never had a Hercules before, so that didn't occur to me. Thanks! I'll definitely test that route before disturbing the board with new components. I've not seen such an early Hercules either.

    And yes, very serendipitous find of a nice Series A 16/64 mobo system. Has the middle 5700671 BIOS. Came with 5151 monitor, matching keyboard and the boxed docs and disks (Diag, DOS, Basic). Very clean unit inside and out with no cracks, scratches or blemishes. Also came with a Mouse Systems optical mouse (M2 I think) along with the reflective mouse pad. Very cool!
    I also have an IBM 5150 with a Hercules card. I can't speak to your exact card but, in general, they work extremely well together. However, to run CGA programs on a Hercules card you need SIMCGA, which is a brilliant little TSR(Terminate-Stay-Resident) program which tricks the program into thinking that the Hercules card is a CGA card. If you want, I can email you a disk image of the SIMCGA software if you PM me your email address.
    7lg4hfgkyoa2.jpg6hynip7dt2sf.jpgetb40ez0mob6.jpgrykv9ezvr64t.jpgus07s25wiqmx.jpg
    Once upon a time, the internet sucked because it came through the phone. Now the phone sucks because it comes through the internet.

  5. #5

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    SIMCGA... another great program by our own Chuck(G).
    PM me if you're looking for 3½" or 5¼" floppy disks. EMail “ ” For everything else, Take Another Step

  6. #6
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    ...that was a looong time ago.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    ...that was a looong time ago.
    I didn't know that you wrote SIMCGA until just now. You're the reason that my 12 year old self was able to play games on his computer in 1994. Thank you for that!
    Once upon a time, the internet sucked because it came through the phone. Now the phone sucks because it comes through the internet.

  8. #8
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    Uh, okay--you're welcome.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Exceter View Post
    If you want, I can email you a disk image of the SIMCGA software if you PM me your email address.
    That would be awesome! Thanks!

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by normanator View Post
    That would be awesome! Thanks!
    Sent. Let us know if it works for you.
    Once upon a time, the internet sucked because it came through the phone. Now the phone sucks because it comes through the internet.

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