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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.

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Best and worst vintage computer brands in your opinion?

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    #46
    It depends if you're talking about back in the day, or now, 25-30 years later? Packard Bells were considered junk when they were new, but now, compared to early to mid '90s Macs with leaking capacitors, exploding batteries, and brittle plastic that cracks if you look at it wrong, they seem built like a tank in comparison.

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      #47
      Originally posted by kc8eyt View Post
      Oh yeah! Bleeding Edge! Forgot about those. I want to update my naughty list with these as well.
      My experiences were opposite: The Leading Edge Model D was surprisingly reliable. Everex, on the other hand, pulled all sorts of shady stuff, like selling a 20 MHz 286, and when you open it up you find a 16 MHz 286 being driven at 20 MHz. Everex systems are very hard to find today because they all committed seppuku in a few years.


      Offering a bounty for:
      - A working Sanyo MBC-775 or Logabax 1600
      - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)

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        #48
        My first own computer was a no nome 286/16. over the years it ended up as a P133 using hand me down components the other users wanted to get rid of.

        I have really no opion on the big brands because I never owned one back then. WRT PCees NEC and HP seems to be they things are going know. Not that long ago it was DEL

        I like all sorts of personnal computers. XTs up, Acorn Risc systems, Amiga and whatever I can get my grab by little hands on. I do have a Mac SE because it was at the right price at the right time. KLaptops and tablets.Use various systems at work. Compaq 268s,/386s and lots more.
        Thomas Byers (DRI)- "You'll have a million people using the A> [MS-DOS prompt] forever. You'll have five million using [nongraphic] menu systems such as Topview, Concurrent PC-DOS, Desq, and those types. But there'll be 50 to 100 million using the iconic-based interfaces."

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          #49
          Originally posted by Trixter View Post

          My experiences were opposite: The Leading Edge Model D was surprisingly reliable. Everex, on the other hand, pulled all sorts of shady stuff, like selling a 20 MHz 286, and when you open it up you find a 16 MHz 286 being driven at 20 MHz. Everex systems are very hard to find today because they all committed seppuku in a few years.

          We had a computer store in town that dealt only in Leading Edge. I worked at another store as a tech where we sold mainly store brand clone systems. We would get a lot of Leading Edge systems with mainly two problems. COM and LPT ports would suddenly stop working. To fix we would install ISA I/O cards. The second most common problem were the 30pin SIMMS. They were very strange as I remember. They had a few large orange capacitors on them and the DIP pins going through them were not trimmed off, making them very sharp to handle. Replacing them with new chips would bring these systems back to life.

          Comment


            #50
            Originally posted by vwestlife View Post
            It depends if you're talking about back in the day, or now, 25-30 years later? Packard Bells were considered junk when they were new, but now, compared to early to mid '90s Macs with leaking capacitors, exploding batteries, and brittle plastic that cracks if you look at it wrong, they seem built like a tank in comparison.
            Quite a few of the P60/P66 Packard Bells died from overheating due to using a case fan to pull air over the CPU heatsink instead of using a dedicated cooling fan. Sure some survived to today because they made millions of them. Also while the plastics held up better (thicker plastic) they do seem to yellow quite a bit.
            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
            Analog video capture cards/software and complete systems

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              #51
              Also I've heard that the only reason the 75 MHz Pentium exists is because Packard Bell wanted a cheaper Pentium to sell. And likewise Dell wanted the cheapest possible "Intel Inside" 486, so Intel created the 486SX-16 for them.

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                #52
                Note also, that some companies had two product lines; the consumer line and the commercial/industrial line, the latter generally being better constructed. HP was one such.

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                  #53
                  Originally posted by grimm View Post
                  For me it was the OS that mattered the most. In the case for the early 8-bit computers it was how open they were about the system, so you could get into the guts and make things work. For me the top of the heap was Commodore, Apple, and to a lesser extent Tandy. The absolute worst in this case was TI who didn't give any access to the guts of the system. I wasn't exposed to the IBM side of things until the mid 80s, but didn't really care for DOS.

                  By the end of the 80s I think the top of the heap was Amiga DOS. It didn't matter what I wanted to do, it never got in my way. By this time I had a lot more experience with Unix based systems and the UI was so much better than anything I had used before, even MacOS. By the early 90s I was already using virtual desktops with OLVWM on Sun systems. I didn't have any interest in Microsoft DOS or Windows at the time, even though I was forced to use them at work.

                  In fact I have never owned a Windows computer, I went from Amiga -> MacOS -> Linux and have never looked back. Although I'm still using a Windows laptop at work.

                  Jason
                  I'm guessing there was no room for an Atari 800 but am curious how you managed to mix in the lot of Commdore/Apple/Tandy all-around but avoid Atari completely?

                  As far as never owning a Windows computer, I guess that's impressive but wouldn't consider it a sad thing that you're forced to use something in the modern day world as common as a Windows machine. I love Windows 10, anyone who hates it clearly can't be reasoned with, or trusted for that matter lol but if we're talking about Win98 on the other hand... chuggchuggchuggchuggchugg....
                  Apple QuickTakeCollector Instagram Photos
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                    #54
                    Originally posted by MindThreat View Post

                    I'm guessing there was no room for an Atari 800 but am curious how you managed to mix in the lot of Commdore/Apple/Tandy all-around but avoid Atari completely?

                    As far as never owning a Windows computer, I guess that's impressive but wouldn't consider it a sad thing that you're forced to use something in the modern day world as common as a Windows machine. I love Windows 10, anyone who hates it clearly can't be reasoned with, or trusted for that matter lol but if we're talking about Win98 on the other hand... chuggchuggchuggchuggchugg....
                    I do like Atari, but I only had a little bit of experience with them back in the day. So I really can't include them in my ranking and still be fair.

                    As far as Windows goes I guess that depends on what your used to. For me Windows (10 included) is death by a thousand cuts. I do consider it to be the worst OS of the 3 main ones on the market today, but that has just been my experience.

                    Jason

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                      #55
                      I liked the old Chicony "MP" laptop line of computers. They made some nice stuff, but all were sold under OEM labels and so not well known. Trogon, AMS Tech, Micron and many others sold their stuff. Their Pentium 2 MP989/Micron Transport NX was a beast. A couple of batteries, a couple of HDD's, floppy, zip and optical drives all could be swapped in and out. There was a MP999 P3 version that never made it to the USA, but was sold in Europe. Then they decided to only make keyboards.
                      Crazy old guy with a basement full of Pentium 1 laptops and parts

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