Forum etiquette

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.
  • Do not "necro-post" unless you are following up to a specific person on a specific thread. And even then, that person may have moved on. Just start a new thread for your related topic.
  • 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.
See more
See less

Commodore 64 Exectutive. Curious about luggables.

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Commodore 64 Exectutive. Curious about luggables.

    What would be a worthwhile retro portable computer? THIS?

    I would like something comparable to the Tandy 1000 EX graphics and I learned that The Last Ninja game originated on C64. I have previously criticized COCO. Maybe I should post this question on there, but the TRS-80 model III looks very cool.

    Monitor with computer built-in?
    GoFundMe Plz Share with your friends.

    The SX-64 is more of a novelty than a usable computer. The tiny 5-inch color CRT is okay for games, but text is microscopic and hard to read.


      But a lot of these portable computers had external monitor support? I just would like a comparable graphics to what I mentioned for games and I can easily take from place to place if I wanted to. It doesn't have to be a luggable or laptop but a very small computer I can easily hook up to VGA and be light enough that it is around 20 lbs.
      GoFundMe Plz Share with your friends.


        Yes, you can use it with an external monitor (composite or luma/chroma, not VGA) -- although it lacks the RF modulator that the regular C64 has. It also doesn't have a cassette port.


          I should be asking this in the Commodore section but how much would a full C64 set run me? By RF modulator, it would run on a TV? Flatscreen or SD TV?
          GoFundMe Plz Share with your friends.


            Have you ever used a C64 before? If not, setting up a monitor is a piece of cake compared to learning its wonderfully cryptic commands like LOAD "*",8,1 and POKE 53281, PEEK (53280)


              GOod point. I"ll try getting an emulator. What's a good one that might run on W8?
              GoFundMe Plz Share with your friends.


                I loved my SX-64. Text is a little hard to read on it, but not impossible. It does have a User Port, serial port (for disk drives and the like), joystick ports, and an external monitor port (for composite video). It will do 99.9% of what a real C-64 can do just in a nifty package. As noted it has no cassette port, but the only thing that practically matters for is if you want to use cassettes (why?) and/or a parallel port printer adapter.

                I would caution that you have to be careful of powering things off of the user port's 9VAC. I did this with mine with a 1660 modem, and I'm almost certain that it screwed up the transformer in the power supply.


                  A full C64 desktop setup or the sx-64 setup? I think I still see working sx-64 systems for low $100s. I do personally think they're fun little systems. Especially if you have enough to mod it with a virtual drive and ethernet. Pretty damn cool. The built-in screen for whatever reason does limit the graphics a bit (16 colors although it's still fluid animation) but you'll get the full graphics back I think on an external monitor. I thought the built in sound is pretty good too. Only other catch is the 1541 drive has a reputation for being on the slower side.

                  A regular C64 desktop .. really you should be able to find one for around $50-60 I'd imagine.

                  Other luggables are mostly the same boat. Limited screen on the system itself but able to output full capabilities to an external. I've said it before, I really like the Compaq Portable, or perhaps a Compaq Portable II which may weigh a little less but still take regular ISA cards for expansion.

                  The catch with any of these is lack of battery power. So you really do end up with a luggable desktop unless you go for something a bit newer.

                  Emulation wise I think I've only played with VICE for the Commodore side. I think the same folks (Cloanto?) who did the Amiga Forever package also have a C64 Forever or something similar but it's commercial I believe. I've heard much good praise though on the Amiga front even though I think that just uses WinUAE, but they've been making it easy to preselect a type of Amiga to emulate and then later bought the rights to the ROMs to officially package with the Amiga side.
                  Looking to acquire: IBM 5100, Altair 8800


                    Originally posted by barythrin View Post
                    The built-in screen for whatever reason does limit the graphics a bit (16 colors although it's still fluid animation) but you'll get the full graphics back I think on an external monitor.
                    The SX-64's built-in monitor uses luma/chroma video, so it shows the same exact colors and graphics as an external monitor -- just much smaller.


                      Originally posted by vwestlife View Post
                      The SX-64's built-in monitor uses luma/chroma video, so it shows the same exact colors and graphics as an external monitor -- just much smaller.
                      I always wondered that and wondered why it would have any limit. I was going to say it doesn't seem like it's limited to me but I honestly don't use either enough that I would probably notice. Several websites and books mention 16 colors to my surprise but I'm not sure why or if that's some technicality that the regular system has.
                      Looking to acquire: IBM 5100, Altair 8800


                        Originally posted by barythrin View Post
                        Several websites and books mention 16 colors to my surprise but I'm not sure why or if that's some technicality that the regular system has.
                        The C64 only has 16 colors. Maybe you're thinking of the Atari 8-bit computer series, which can display up to 256 colors?


                          Trouble running Quo Vadis as a .tap file on C64 Forever. I'm pretty sure the file is okay and there's a little icon for a cassette tape in the bottom portion of the c64 forever screen. How long would it take to run??? AFAIK the emulator is trying as hard as it can to be like an old PC and d64 files actually give off the sound of an old disk drive working.

                          The problem is its just as fast as an old disk drive...
                          GoFundMe Plz Share with your friends.


                            VICE is the best emu, IMHO
                            You can speed up disk access with JiffyDOS (full disc. I sell it)
                            First color portable computer, so it's famous
                            About $100-$150 is your price tag
                            A regular 64 with disk drive is dirt cheap, but the drive shipping will kill you if not careful. However, I did just send a 1541 + 64 to someone in WI last weekend for $20.00 shipping, so it can be done.
                            Both SX and 64 can use newer LCD monitors/tvs. Need a video in, or Svideo.