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Our mission ...

This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

This forum has been around in this format for over 15 years. These rules and guidelines help us maintain a healthy and active community, and we moderate the forum to keep things on track. Please familiarize yourself with these rules and guidelines.


Remain civil and respectful

There are several hundred people who actively participate here. People come from all different backgrounds and will have different ways of seeing things. You will not agree with everything you read here. Back-and-forth discussions are fine but do not cross the line into rude or disrespectful behavior.

Conduct yourself as you would at any other place where people come together in person to discuss their hobby. If you wouldn't say something to somebody in person, then you probably should not be writing it here.

This should be obvious but, just in case: profanity, threats, slurs against any group (sexual, racial, gender, etc.) will not be tolerated.


Stay close to the original topic being discussed
  • If you are starting a new thread choose a reasonable sub-forum to start your thread. (If you choose incorrectly don't worry, we can fix that.)
  • If you are responding to a thread, stay on topic - the original poster was trying to achieve something. You can always start a new thread instead of potentially "hijacking" an existing thread.



Contribute something meaningful

To put things in engineering terms, we value a high signal to noise ratio. Coming here should not be a waste of time.
  • This is not a chat room. If you are taking less than 30 seconds to make a post then you are probably doing something wrong. A post should be on topic, clear, and contribute something meaningful to the discussion. If people read your posts and feel that their time as been wasted, they will stop reading your posts. Worse yet, they will stop visiting and we'll lose their experience and contributions.
  • Do not bump threads.
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  • Use the Private Message system for posts that are targeted at a specific person.


"PM Sent!" messages (or, how to use the Private Message system)

This forum has a private message feature that we want people to use for messages that are not of general interest to other members.

In short, if you are going to reply to a thread and that reply is targeted to a specific individual and not of interest to anybody else (either now or in the future) then send a private message instead.

Here are some obvious examples of when you should not reply to a thread and use the PM system instead:
  • "PM Sent!": Do not tell the rest of us that you sent a PM ... the forum software will tell the other person that they have a PM waiting.
  • "How much is shipping to ....": This is a very specific and directed question that is not of interest to anybody else.


Why do we have this policy? Sending a "PM Sent!" type message basically wastes everybody else's time by making them having to scroll past a post in a thread that looks to be updated, when the update is not meaningful. And the person you are sending the PM to will be notified by the forum software that they have a message waiting for them. Look up at the top near the right edge where it says 'Notifications' ... if you have a PM waiting, it will tell you there.

Copyright and other legal issues

We are here to discuss vintage computing, so discussing software, books, and other intellectual property that is on-topic is fine. We don't want people using these forums to discuss or enable copyright violations or other things that are against the law; whether you agree with the law or not is irrelevant. Do not use our resources for something that is legally or morally questionable.

Our discussions here generally fall under "fair use." Telling people how to pirate a software title is an example of something that is not allowable here.


Reporting problematic posts

If you see spam, a wildly off-topic post, or something abusive or illegal please report the thread by clicking on the "Report Post" icon. (It looks like an exclamation point in a triangle and it is available under every post.) This send a notification to all of the moderators, so somebody will see it and deal with it.

If you are unsure you may consider sending a private message to a moderator instead.


New user moderation

New users are directly moderated so that we can weed spammers out early. This means that for your first 10 posts you will have some delay before they are seen. We understand this can be disruptive to the flow of conversation and we try to keep up with our new user moderation duties to avoid undue inconvenience. Please do not make duplicate posts, extra posts to bump your post count, or ask the moderators to expedite this process; 10 moderated posts will go by quickly.

New users also have a smaller personal message inbox limit and are rate limited when sending PMs to other users.


Other suggestions
  • Use Google, books, or other definitive sources. There is a lot of information out there.
  • Don't make people guess at what you are trying to say; we are not mind readers. Be clear and concise.
  • Spelling and grammar are not rated, but they do make a post easier to read.
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Computer Fun

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    Computer Fun

    Late 2018 I took a break from the whole vintage computer thing. I accumulated quite a few machines and bought quite a few whilst living in NC for a year. I sold everything however.

    Then I moved back to FL last year and started with LaserDisc again. Trying (and succeeding) in finding equipment thru searches is very satisfying. Plus I finally managed to obtain some AC3RF (Dolby Digital decoding thru specialized equipment) stuff finally so that is really cool. I have watched a lot of great classic action and WW2 movies so far.

    Now I find myself exploring if I should get back into vintage computers again.

    As I knew Miami has far fewer opportunities to acquire vintage stuff and many sellers are completely delusional. But the search is still fun. Maybe I should just search for fun without buying. Then again: I do enjoy playing Warlords II, Defender of the Crown, Civilization I and some other games. Until I do not and get frustrated when I have too many desktops and concurrent projects.

    I am contemplating just getting one Pentium 233 MMX machine and leave it at that.

    Then again I said the same about just getting a Pioneer CLD-D704 but almost a year later I am up to close to 10 LD players again.

    Anyway: cool to read up on all the latest and greatest. Especially the MCA sound card topic is very interesting.

    The one challenge is the proliferation of classifieds' platforms outside eBay and Craigslist. Offerup / LetGo / Mercari / Facebook Marketplace and so on are very hard to search. The upside is (at least with LaserDisc) that it also makes it much harder for people to find stuff. Many sellers also appear to have a lower barrier with those platforms and often describe items with anything but what it actually is so that is kind of funny.

    #2
    You'll need a 6502 machine too, though. Maybe a couple, I mean at least an Apple 2 and a C64. And a Z80 box. And a 68k Macintosh. And if you're gonna have a 68k Mac, you might as well get an Amiga too. And that P233 won't slow down enough for really olllld games, so you might as well get an old Tandy (or three) too. And maybe a few old Unix workstations. And if you're going to go that far, I mean it wouldn't hurt to grab a System/360 and a couple PDPs too, right?

    ....... Right?

    ;3
    -- Lee

    If you get super-bored, try muh crappy Odysee channel: Old Computer Fun!

    Looking For: Type 4 HDC for Tandy II/12/16/6000, Mac IIci hard drive sled, PC-era Tandy stuff, Weird Old Unix Stuff, Aesthetic Old Serial Terminals (HP and DG in particular)

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      #3
      Probably not. I have played with 8086 thru Pentium 3 in vintage / retro. Atari 1040 STF and Philips / Magnavox CD-I may be options but those are expensive.

      A 8086 thru 80286 would be good for some early CGA/EGA games like SimCity and Defender of the Crown.
      Last edited by PeterNC; March 8, 2020, 04:15 PM.

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        #4
        Bought an EGA CRT for $65 including shipping with a cut power cord. The gamble will be that in case the power cord can be fixed it may work. If not I may have a TV technician look at it locally. Negotiating another EGA CRT also.

        Kind of weird that EGA CRTs are easier to find than cheap OEM desktops right now.

        There is also an auction for a 5150 with 5154 going on right now. http://cgi.ebay.com/254533957005

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          #5
          PeterNC: Any recommendations on what LD player to get, if you're getting only one? I have an LD of Johnny Mnemonic ("Whoa.") that I sometimes feel should be viewed from the original media...
          "Chaos will ensue if the variable i is altered..." - SysV Programmers Guide

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            #6
            Bought a OptiPlex GL 590. Looks like it may have a CR-563B and CT1740 in it (based on the text next to game port and audio connections). Wait and see.

            Looks like it could be upgraded to a Pentium 166 instead of a 90.

            https://stason.org/TULARC/pc/motherb...X-GL-OPTI.html





            Supposedly also includes a keyboard and mouse.
            Last edited by PeterNC; March 12, 2020, 06:27 AM.

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              #7
              Thats a nice little box. They were made pretty well back then. I have two Optiplex GX1 machines (Pentium II/III slot 1) Really reliable.

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                #8
                I have owned other Dell machines before. They are really cool.

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by PeterNC View Post
                  I have owned other Dell machines before. They are really cool.
                  Id love to get one of the first few generations of the Dell XPS line... ( 1 through 5) I used to have a few in charcoal gray, blue and silver] xps_dark.jpg
                  The bottom psu is modular and slides out. It was a slick design. I used to run a couple as servers back in the day.

                  Granted the last of them were made as dell was becoming trash, but the first few were rocks.
                  Last edited by VERAULT; March 12, 2020, 05:38 PM.

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                    #10
                    Cool. They may pop up from time to time. Searching is a big part of the fun. At least I think so.

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                      #11
                      Got the Leading Technology EGA CRT today. Reconnected the power cable. It makes a humming sound. Will take it to a CRT technician (when I find one) after the virus situation is resolved (hopefully sooner than later). Do not have a system to test it with either (yet).

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                        #12
                        Picked up an IBM USB FDD today: works. Also picked up an AST 14" VGA CRT for free (https://www.cnet.com/products/astvis...a-mon-lr-mprii) but I cannot find a VGA cable anywhere to test it. Go figure. And with working from home because of COVID-19 I now have to wait to find one somewhere.

                        Tried to buy 100 diskettes but the seller has not yet responded. https://offerup.com/item/detail/489914575/

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                          #13
                          Bought 49 Maxell 3.5" DS/HD diskettes for $17. And a white 15" NEC LCD for $30 including shipping. So that is not bad.

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                            #14
                            Picked up a VGA cable for $4 @ Goodwill locally today. The AST VGA CRT works great. Even at 1920X1080 which is a bit surprising to say the least.

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                              #15
                              Received the Dell today. Seems to be fine. Has a CT2740 instead of a CT1740 but that is fine. No HDD so I picked up a 1GB 50PIN SCSI (Toshiba MK537FB) for $12 including shipping. Amazing. Wait and see if it arrives alive. Listed as wiped and working. Also bought an AHA-2940 + 50PIN cable for $18. Put in an offer for a SCSI CD-ROM also: those can usually read virtually anything. Fun!

                              The 49 diskettes are still in transit. From OH to CO to get to FL: weird!

                              The AST VGA CRT does not work on the Dell: it has a power issue because the Dell BIOS throws back a keyboard data line error when the CRT is connected. Works fine with the NEC VGA LCD.
                              Last edited by PeterNC; March 19, 2020, 02:07 PM.

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