VOGONS


Retro Rig Photo Thread

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Reply 100 of 1883, by Amigaz

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@Tetrium

Thanks, I was planning to put in more info but I was pretty exhausted after making my post with all the photo's etc but when there's time I'm going to add some more stuff and post pic's of my other 10-15 retro rigs

My retro computer stuff: https://lychee.jjserver.net/#16136303902327

Reply 101 of 1883, by Tetrium

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Amigaz wrote:

@Tetrium

Thanks, I was planning to put in more info but I was pretty exhausted after making my post with all the photo's etc but when there's time I'm going to add some more stuff and post pic's of my other 10-15 retro rigs

Quality over quantity, my brother ;D

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Reply 102 of 1883, by Lennart

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Some nice stories and rigs you have got there, guys! 😁

Here are some pictures of my P233MMX rig, hope you'll enjoy them. I tried to stuff in as many parts as possible, because I do not have enough space for a large amount of retro PCs. I think I succeeded quite well. 😀

DSC_1498.jpg

As you can see, it's a Highscreen case as well (the same one as Tetrium has). I picked it up, along with the motherboard and CPU, at the local thrift shop. These parts and a Terratec EWS64XL sound card, which my dad had bought back in the days, formed the base of my build.

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A view of the case when opened, with MIDI connector boxes in front. The metal part at the bottom on the right side of the case can hinge open, so that you can install full-length cards.

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A better look at the installed cards, these are (from top to bottom):
- Voodoo 3 3000 PCI
- Guillemot Maxi Studio ISIS
- Terratec EWS64XXL
- IBM Music Feature card
- Gravis Ultrasound MAX
- Roland LAPC-I

DSC_1503.jpg

And finally a close-up of the front module of the Terratec sound card. This is what actually makes it an XXL. If you have just the sound card, it's an L; it's an XL if you have a regular front module and an XXL if you have this front module, which houses the guts of an entire Waldorf Microwave II synthesizer. It's a very nice synth with some extraordinary sounds, but do note that it is completely useless for games as it doesn't support GM. There's also a connector for a MIDI daughterboard inside, but I'm currently not using it. Before I swapped my regular front module for the Waldorf front module, I used to have a DB50XG attached to it. Now I'd need something to elevate the daughterboard a little, because otherwise a component from the Waldorf synth is in the way.

To complete the setup, I have a Roland SC-55 attached to the MIDI-OUT of the Roland LAPC-I. With this setup I've got most sound options covered, apart from genuine OPL and SB16 support. Though I have to say that I don't really miss them, because the EWS64 is top-notch and its OPL clone is accurate enough.

Reply 103 of 1883, by Amigaz

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@Lennart

Nice rig 😀

Guess you're running DOS multiboot config's to avoid I/O resource conflics with all those sound cards
I wish there was motherboards with more ISA slots! wanna stuff in even more sound cards in my rigs...arghh 😵

My retro computer stuff: https://lychee.jjserver.net/#16136303902327

Reply 104 of 1883, by Lennart

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Amigaz wrote:

Guess you're running DOS multiboot config's to avoid I/O resource conflics with all those sound cards
I wish there was motherboards with more ISA slots! wanna stuff in even more sound cards in my rigs...arghh 😵

I hear ya, there are simply too many nice sound cards to fit inside one PC. 😢

Anyway, the sound cards in this rig all work together, so no multiboot configs needed. 😀 Granted, I had to cut a few corners, like disabling the secondary IDE bus, but that was definitely worth it. One HDD and one CD-ROM drive is enough for me. 😎

Reply 106 of 1883, by Lennart

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retro games 100 wrote:

@Lennart, what do you think of the Maxi ISIS card? I've just got one, but haven't tested it yet. Do you use it in DOS or Windows?

It's a very capable card I'd say. Many input options and a good hardware synthesizer chip (Dream SAM9407) that allows up to 64MB of sample RAM, although I'm not sure if the ISIS itself supports up to 64MB. However, I find that I'm using the Terratec card (which actually has the same chip) much more often. I'm not sure how good the DOS compatibility of the ISIS is, but as it's a PCI sound card, I wouldn't be surprised if it's somewhat difficult to get going.

So while the ISIS is a nice card in Windows, if it's good DOS compatibility you're after, you're probably much better off with the EWS64XL. It also has the added bonus of a WaveBlaster-connector that doesn't suffer from hanging notes and there is at least one tracker player for Windows (Mod4Win) that supports it natively, which means it's an ideal card for tracker music in Windows. It's just that DOS games require the GUS, otherwise I wouldn't have had a need for it at all...

Reply 108 of 1883, by Tetrium

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Nice pics, and you sure managed to cram it alright 😜
Only thing is, theres so much inside it, I can barely see anything of the mobo!
What board are you using?

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Reply 109 of 1883, by Lennart

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sgt76 wrote:

@Lennart: Very nice rig mate! I would just change one thing if it was mine - a Voodoo Rush would be more period correct- but still that's just me personal pref. Cheers!

You're absolutely right, that would have been more period correct and the Voodoo 3 is most likely hampered by the performance of the rest anyway. Then again, you wouldn't expect some of the sound cards in a PC from 1997 either, so I'm not very period correct in any case. 😉 The aim for this machine is to run a large variety of games from the DOS/Windows 9x era, which it covers quite well.

Tetrium wrote:

What board are you using?

I used the mobo that came with the case, which isn't anything special I think. It's an A-Trend ATC-5040 mobo, which supports Socket 7 CPUs and has an Intel 430TX chipset that allows up to 256MB of RAM. It also comes with a grand total of 2 USB ports, which is quite handy for file transfers. 😀

Reply 110 of 1883, by MrKsoft

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Thought today I'd post about my favorite of my old PCs. It has a lot of history behind it.

DSCN1240.jpg
DSCN1245.jpg

It's a Gateway G6-450, purchased in February 1999... probably the worst possible time my family could have picked to buy our first PC (moving from an ancient Macintosh Performa 600) because barely a year later the computer world had gone from the P2/450 being top-of-the-line to breaking the 1Ghz barrier. We got a ton of use out of this thing, though, and I have a lifetime of memories stemming from it. It was the first machine I ever went online with (yay AOL... not) and the first machine upon which I played most of the games that are still my favorites today. I also used it to discover game emulation and took early steps in game development. When we got a newer PC in 2003, this became completely mine and was the first computer I owned myself. I used it for about two and a half years after that as my main computer and purchased several upgrades on my own to keep it relevant and useful. Interesting to note, I somehow managed to run the originally installed Windows 98 first edition on this thing through its entire useful life-- having installed tons of useless crap, getting a few viruses that lingered for YEARS because I didn't have a virus scanner on the computer until 2004, and customizing it out the wazoo, it still somewhat ran. I finally reformatted it in 2007.

More recently I've thrown more spare parts in, and my goal is to upgrade it as far as it can possibly go. That mostly means I'm going to see if I can push the RAM even higher (I'd be there already but I found out I have a LOT of dead DIMMs) and trying to get a hold of a Slot-1 PIII Coppermine 1000Mhz, which is apparently the highest processor it'll take.

-Intel "Tabor 2" 440BX motherboard (Gateway OEM)
-Katmai Pentium III 550 [upgraded from original Deschutes PII/450 last week-- a meager upgrade, but I pulled it from a junk machine a friend was throwing out and I figured every Mhz counts]
-512MB PC100 SDRAM [upgraded from stock 64MB to 320MB in 2002, then to 512 last week. Interesting note: it is widely reported that this board will only take 384MB total, and no machine I've ever seen spoken of online has exceeded that number. For the hell of it, I slapped 512MB in and it just worked! I actually got it to recognize 768MB, but the last DIMM was faulty.]
-ATI Radeon 7500 64MB AGP [upgraded from some sort of STB Velocity, RIVA TNT based card in 2002-- not sure exactly what, I was too young and don't seem to have the old card any more]
-ES1373 AudioPCI (integrated)
-Netgear FA311 PCI Ethernet [added in 2009, replaces US Robotics winmodem]
-Belkin USB 2.0 card [added in 2010]
-14.4GB Quantum Fireball IDE hard drive
-40GB Seagate IDE hard drive [added in 2003-- first upgrade I bought with my own hard-earned money-- I was 11!]
-Generic 3.5" floppy drive
-Unlabeled DVD-ROM drive
-Iomega IDE ZIP-100 drive [added in 2010]
-Not pictured: Memorex 52X CD-RW drive [added in 2003-- currently out of the machine because I was removing the front panel of the tower about a year ago and it caught on the front of this drive and pulled the disc tray out of alignment. I'm having trouble fixing it, so I might buy a replacement of the same model. With the ZIP drive I added I'll need an IDE card for the machine to fit it now, anyway]
-Dual booting a slimmed down and quite usable Windows XP, and Windows 98SE for games that don't like XP, and DOS stuff

Reply 111 of 1883, by gwb

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I have had this card lying around for a very long time and finally decided to build a system for it. I do not have the original chassis for it so I decided to use a very tall ATX case for it that I got on Craigslist a while back. I am planning on mounting both PSUs in the case, but the drive bays will have to be modified to accommodate the large aalchemy PSU. The primary Thermaltake 600w PSU was chosen so that newer motherboards could be used. The aalchemy is limited to mobos that do not have the P4 +12v connector.

This is a very temporary setup, primarily just to install Win2k and see how everything cooperates. The board is an Abit A17 (I believe) that I picked up cheap on the 'bay. Some nice Geil 2x512MB memory currently resides in it.

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In this shot you can see the dual PSU setup. The myriad hard drives lying around provides load for both PSUs. A good eye will see the blue setup screen for Windows and that the aalchemy PSU is not powered on in this picture.

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Here's a shot of both 8164s

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To do:

Throw the other 8164 in the rig and see if that one works as well
Modify the case and install the PSUs
A sound card and primary AGP video card will need to be decided upon
Finally install everything inside the case and do cable management

Reply 112 of 1883, by Tetrium

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Lennart wrote:

As you can see, it's a Highscreen case as well (the same one as Tetrium has).

Actually, before I knew it was a Highscreen, I just called it the "Tonino" case (perhaps a couple other Dutch people here will know what I'm referring to 😜).
Shame really, I WANT people to put their computers on the street with harddrive, I'll never abuse the info that's on it anyway, I'm just grateful I'm getting another harddrive really 😀

Edit:About dead DIMM's, there is of course the trick that sometimes (or dare I say, often!) revives seemingly dead sdram sticks: I clean the contacts with a paper towel (toilet paper tends to leave little paper cloths on the hardware) with some rubbing alcohol. You wouldn't believe how much dirt comes off of it even though the contacts "seems" to be clean!

Edit2:

gwb wrote:

I have had this card lying around for a very long time and finally decided to build a system for it.

That card is very wow-ish!!!

Nice rigs, guys!

Btw, I also fell for the "massive gigaherz obsolete race" when I got my first computer.
I finally got a P2-350 (P2-450 was THE fastest thing on the block), then 2 WEEKS later P3 started shipping -_-
"Oh well" I thought, can't get any worse I guess...
Then within 1 1/2 years they suddenly went 1Ghz...🤣!!

Edit3:

MrKsoft wrote:
http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m34/MrKsoft/photos/pcstuff/DSCN1240.jpg […]
Show full quote

DSCN1240.jpg

And nice touch with the ZIP drive 😉

Last edited by Tetrium on 2011-04-18, 10:00. Edited 3 times in total.

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Reply 113 of 1883, by retro games 100

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Lennart wrote:
retro games 100 wrote:

@Lennart, what do you think of the Maxi ISIS card? I've just got one, but haven't tested it yet. Do you use it in DOS or Windows?

It's a very capable card I'd say. Many input options and a good hardware synthesizer chip (Dream SAM9407) that allows up to 64MB of sample RAM, although I'm not sure if the ISIS itself supports up to 64MB. However, I find that I'm using the Terratec card (which actually has the same chip) much more often. I'm not sure how good the DOS compatibility of the ISIS is, but as it's a PCI sound card, I wouldn't be surprised if it's somewhat difficult to get going.

Hehe, you're right it is difficult to get going. If I try to run a DOS game inside Windows 98, it "blue screens" if I select General Midi for the music. I'm sure my basic checks are OK - resources look OK, etc.

Reply 114 of 1883, by gerwin

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PC1) A recent build, using just USB in DOS/Windows to transfer files. Operating system is mainly DOS 7.1 and Windows 98SE Winimize (Windows 95 shell). I am quite satisfied with how this works for DOS games and apps, It runs everything I care for. Using both Throttle and SoftFSB. The case is just temporary. I would like to have a real small case for this. Usually I despise the Creative ISA cards, but I have to admit that using this particular SB-16 with the MPU card works like a charm.
-P-III-E 200MHz / 66MHz-FSB (no fan, underclocked 750MHz Engineering Sample)
-AOpen AX6BC rev1.4 i440BX
-Voodoo3-2000 16MB 128-bit AGP (underclocked from 143 to 114MHz, new heatsink)
-128MB RAM
-Sound Blaster 16 CT2800 with genuine OPL3 (and genuine hanging notes).
-Roland MPU-401AT, Midi signal connected to the Midi DB.
-Terratec Dream 4MB Midi Daughterboard, on homemade riser with stereo reverser (no it is not connected to that PCI slot 😉 )
-1GB IDE Flash module (Need a bigger one)
-Screen is a Compaq V720 17" CRT

PC2) Used to be the main home PC. Kinda evolved into its current state. Operating system is Windows 98SE. The fan has a speed control thingy. I like the case of this one.
-P-III-S 950MHz / 100MHz-FSB (On slot-T, Undervolted, Actually a P-III-S 1266)
-Soyo SY-6BA-III+ i440BX
-256+256MB RAM
-Abit Geforce MX 440 AGP 64MB 128-bit (with homemade heatsink)
-CMI8330 SB16 Clone ISA
-Turtle Beach Vortex-2 PCI with digital I/O
-Terratec Dream 1MB Midi Daughterboard, on homemade adapter
-Realtek Ethernet PCI
-USB 2.0 Card PCI
-Realtek Ethernet PCI
-HDD Maxtor 40GB IDE
-CD-R/W, floppy, Harddisk Tray

PC3) I hardly do anything with this thing. Windows 2000 SP4. It has no CPU fan, because the PSU is blowing on it anyways. I made a switch on the backside to toggle 66/133MHz FSB.
-P-III-S 1266MHz / 133MHz-FSB (On lin-lin adapter, Undervolted)
-Chaintech Clone Via Apollo Pro
-512MB RAM
-PNY Geforce 6200-A 256MB 64-bit AGP (Replaced Bulged Caps..)
-Turtle Beach Vortex-2 PCI (connected to OPL3-SA3)
-Yamaha OPL3-SA3 ISA with 4MB korg DB (Homemade flatcable)
-Realtek Ethernet PCI
-HDD IBM Deskstar 61.5GB IDE
-DVD-ROM, floppy

Attachments

--> ISA Soundcard Overview // Doom MBF 2.04 // SetMul

Reply 115 of 1883, by GXL750

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Can't you run just one of those at full speed?

Anyways, the AOpen motherboard in PC1; I used to have that same board. Pretty good quality; was always rock solid in use.

EDIT: Also just realized that the Vortex 2 card in PC3 is the exact same card as I use in my Dell PIII box. MIDI is awful but everything else about the card is great. I just got around MIDI by installing the Yamaha S-YXG100 soft synth as well as Roland VSC3 soft synth.

Reply 116 of 1883, by gerwin

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PC1 is guilty of underclocking yes. 😀 PC2 cannot run faster without overclocking the AGP and PCI bus. PC3 runs at full speed.

Exactly, the AOpen board is told to be very reliable. In comparison The Soyo has more BIOS features.

That Vortex-2 is a fine card. One can also directly attach Midi Daughterboards to it. Only for Windows 2000/XP the drivers are poor.

--> ISA Soundcard Overview // Doom MBF 2.04 // SetMul

Reply 117 of 1883, by GXL750

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Running Win 98SE, I have no trouble with the drivers.

Since my Micron P133 box came with a Creative AWE32 (goldfinch) upgrade card, I'm wishing this Dell had an ISA slot. The Goldfinch doesn't appear to require an actual Creative sound card to be paired with it and I think A3D and the AWE32 midi would make a nice combo.

Reply 118 of 1883, by gerwin

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I also have such a CT1920 AWE upgrade card, with 8MB and connectors on it. Pictures. It can play soundfont based midi music in windows in hardware... But so can a Sb Live! PCI. Really, its Dos usefulness is poor. Still, If any of my PC's had an ISA slot to spare I might have put it there.

--> ISA Soundcard Overview // Doom MBF 2.04 // SetMul

Reply 119 of 1883, by GXL750

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I wonder how many variations of the card were made. Mine doesn't have a green connector but isntead, one that's black. Mine also has SPDIF out. However, mine doesn't have that rectangular chip between the ram slots and EMU8000 chip.