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What are builds you want to make someday?

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Reply 60 of 101, by foil_fresh

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i'd love to have a 486dx33 with turbo button/led display, SB16 and any suitable video card. Only thing that bothers me these days are ball mice/serial mice. Was having a PS/2 mouse port rare as heck with these old socket 3 systems?

i have a serial optical mouse and it is... terrible. 2 separate sensors that NEEDS the mousepad it ships with. someone decided to jam 2 barcode scanners together and called it a mouse. if you've thought about getting one, dont.

Pentium MMX 166MHz / Shuttle HOT591-p / S3 Virge DX / SB 16
Pentium II 266MHz / Lucky-Star 6ABX2V / Riva128 / AWE64 / YMF744
Pentium III 950 MHz / SY-7VBA / Geforce2 Pro 32MB / YMF744
Pentium IV 3.4GHz/ GA-8S655FX / Geforce 6800 GT / Audigy

Reply 61 of 101, by gex85

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Some day, I want to build a dual Pentium Pro system. 😄

1992 - i486DX2-66 // 1997 - P1-233 MMX // 1998 - P2-350 // 2000 - P3-650 // 2001 - Athlon 1400 // 2003 - Athlon XP 3200+ // 2008 - Xeon E5450 // 2015 - Xeon E3-1240v5

Reply 62 of 101, by ynari

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I suspect the PS/2 mouse port availability depended on whether the 486 motherboard was VLB, or PCI. I bet the PCI support chips basically provided PS/2 'for free'..

In that time period, PS/2 mice were also ball mice. I even used the original IBM PS/2 mouse for a while (a horrid aberration)

Reply 63 of 101, by Zack_H

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I use ball mice on a regular basis and they are fine IMO. Hell, I’d be okay using one on a brand-new PC. Sure, they do require some cleaning now and then, but that doesn’t bother me.

Starting Windows 95. . .

Reply 64 of 101, by ynari

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I'm repeatedly tempted to do a 286 build, to play really early games, but it would be an expensive faff and DOSBox is easier unless there's something specific I can't run in my 486 system that's not been rebuilt.

Also tempted by an old Macbook that supports 16 colour modes. May try and get emulation working in BeOS PPC instead..

Reply 65 of 101, by jade_angel

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ynari wrote on 2020-02-26, 13:56:

I suspect the PS/2 mouse port availability depended on whether the 486 motherboard was VLB, or PCI. I bet the PCI support chips basically provided PS/2 'for free'..

In that time period, PS/2 mice were also ball mice. I even used the original IBM PS/2 mouse for a while (a horrid aberration)

Yeah, every PCI 486 I've ever seen has a PS/2 port (though on AT boards, it's often positioned uselessly), but some ISA/VLB boards and even some 286/386 machines have them sometimes. I even recall seeing a Leading Edge 8086 machine with PS/2 ports! (And of course all IBM PS/2 systems will have them.)

Main Box: Ryzen-TR 1900X | GTX 1050/Radeon RX 580
98/2000 Box: PIII/766 |Quadro4 380 XGL

Reply 66 of 101, by dionb

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foil_fresh wrote on 2020-02-26, 07:23:

i'd love to have a 486dx33 with turbo button/led display, SB16 and any suitable video card. Only thing that bothers me these days are ball mice/serial mice. Was having a PS/2 mouse port rare as heck with these old socket 3 systems?

PS/2 uptake in 486 and 586 era was... weird...

Basically all OEM systems were PS/2, both for keyboard and mouse - but virtually no AT-style systems had PS/2 keyboard and PS/2 mouse via riser was rare too.

i have a serial optical mouse and it is... terrible. 2 separate sensors that NEEDS the mousepad it ships with. someone decided to jam 2 barcode scanners together and called it a mouse. if you've thought about getting one, dont.

Ooh, Mouse Systems optical mice! Loved them. Got one after getting sick and tired of cleaning my balls and - far worse - rollers all the time. It was like having ascended into paradise (so long as my wrist wasn't too sweaty...). Come to think of it< I have one of these. Only reason I don't use it is that I've become something of a trackball fetishist and have a very nice serial Kensington Orbit for my old builds.

As for my dream builds:
- Olivetti M24, upgraded to NEC V30 and at least 640kB RAM, also an AdLib clone I made myself and a MusicQuest MIDI card. Have most of the bits required, but PSU is dead in a sparking, smoking way. I have a working M240 though and they supposedly share the same PSU...
- a 486DX33 system completely engineered to run Ultima 7, with Soundblaster clone I made myself and another MusicQuest MIDI card. Can do this now, just haven't gotten round to it.
- Alaris Leopard IBM 486SLC2 VLB board. Have this, working on it now. Maxed RAM to 16Mb, pairing it with PAS16 and Aztech WaveRider 32+ and a 512MB DOM. Hope to get it running this weekend 😀
- All UMC build, with UMC CPU, UMC chipset, UMC I/O, UMC VLB VGA, UMC NIC and if possible UMC cache and soundcard with UMC chips too. Have most of this, just struggling with the motherboard's battery.
- NexGen 5x86, preferably with NxVL VLB board. Unobtainium, at least, in working condition. But maybe I'll luck out, or decide to pay the going price for one one day...
- Any ALi Aladdin 7 system. Seems almost as unobtainium as the NexGen.
- MS-6168 system (i440BX with onboard Voodoo3), completely maxxed out, so 512MB RAM, Tualatin via compatible slocket, SLC SSD etc. Actually had this, but the video memory on the V3 died on me. Have a second board, but it refuses any Coppermine, let alone Tualatin :'(
- i820 or i840 system. Sounds easy, but these things just keep dying on me. I have both 40ns RDRAM and an MTH-on-a-stick, but a long line of Asus P3C-D and P3C-E boards are completely unresponsive. One day I'll get a working example.
- Tualatin 1400S on SiS635T board. Have this, my ultimate Win98SE system. 512MB DDR, GeForce3Ti200 (which I might upgrade to Gf4 one day), Voodoo2 and a nice SSD 😀

Of course, before I get all of this done I'll run out of ports on my KVM and I'm already out of ports on my mixer (2 sound cards per build does that...)

Reply 67 of 101, by pewpewpew

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dionb wrote on 2020-02-29, 19:29:

- All UMC build, with UMC CPU, UMC chipset, UMC I/O, UMC VLB VGA, UMC NIC and if possible UMC cache and soundcard with UMC chips too. Have most of this, just struggling with the motherboard's battery.

Oh that's just giddy. I look forward to seeing your choice of case for that. Actually, what would they have used at a tradeshow in the day? I suppose a 'demonstrator' case would have been a desktop with the lid off, bit of plexi laid over.

Reply 68 of 101, by barleyguy

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pewpewpew wrote on 2020-02-29, 20:07:
dionb wrote on 2020-02-29, 19:29:

- All UMC build, with UMC CPU, UMC chipset, UMC I/O, UMC VLB VGA, UMC NIC and if possible UMC cache and soundcard with UMC chips too. Have most of this, just struggling with the motherboard's battery.

Oh that's just giddy. I look forward to seeing your choice of case for that. Actually, what would they have used at a tradeshow in the day? I suppose a 'demonstrator' case would have been a desktop with the lid off, bit of plexi laid over.

The tradeshows I remember from the 90's rarely showed the guts of anything. Generally it was more like a computer in a nice clean beige case with a large CRT monitor, showing whatever the cool software of the day was. The whole "show the guts in a plexiglass case with some pretty blue lights" didn't really start until a few years later. Cable management wasn't much of a thing yet, nor did people appreciate the beauty of internal hardware.

The store I worked for used to put up something like Wing Commander or The Neverhood on one monitor, along with DVD video and maybe a business app like the space shuttle model from Autocad.

Cases in any color other than beige or white were even pretty rare. We started getting black cases around 1998, and they were new and exciting.

Reply 69 of 101, by dionb

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pewpewpew wrote on 2020-02-29, 20:07:
dionb wrote on 2020-02-29, 19:29:

- All UMC build, with UMC CPU, UMC chipset, UMC I/O, UMC VLB VGA, UMC NIC and if possible UMC cache and soundcard with UMC chips too. Have most of this, just struggling with the motherboard's battery.

Oh that's just giddy. I look forward to seeing your choice of case for that. Actually, what would they have used at a tradeshow in the day? I suppose a 'demonstrator' case would have been a desktop with the lid off, bit of plexi laid over.

For now it's just a standalone backplate. My long-term (if long-delayed) goal is to use a chest of drawers as case for my fixed lineup of vintage PCs. Each drawer is a system, all wiring is bundled together from the chest to KVM/mixer/patchbay.

In any event I only have two truly beautiful AT cases, and they're already occupied, with my Alaris Leopard taking the best one. Spent a few hours on it this evening, finalizing hardware and getting software in order. As my Cirrus Logic GD5424 was artifacting terribly at SVGA resolutions I've replaced it with a Diamond Speedstar 24X with WD90C31 chip, for sound added a Mediavision ProAudio Studio 16 and an Aztech Waverider 32+ and finished it off with the obligatory NIC. It's all up and running, in fact I just got it on internet with mTCP. Only things left are cosmetic - getting the HDD LED to work somehow (LED is fine, the I/O card pins just don't do anything..) and the speed display.

Reply 70 of 101, by SpectriaForce

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I might assemble a low end Celeron Tualatin-256 based pc with PCI graphics card and try to overclock it. So far that's just an idea though. I still need to get DMA mode working on my recently built IBM 6x86MX / Asus P5A based pc (which for whatever the reason does not want to work, despite using the right 80-conductor IDE cables) and install the games on it first.

Last edited by SpectriaForce on 2020-03-02, 00:12. Edited 1 time in total.

I sell 'ridiculously expensive' retro hardware to people like you. I feel sorry for that.

Reply 71 of 101, by SpectriaForce

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dionb wrote on 2020-02-29, 19:29:

before I get all of this done I'll run out of ports on my KVM and I'm already out of ports on my mixer (2 sound cards per build does that...)

Sounds like a first world problem to me 🤣

I sell 'ridiculously expensive' retro hardware to people like you. I feel sorry for that.

Reply 72 of 101, by feipoa

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Slot A Athlon 1 GHz, Orion or Thunderbird core. I have both now. Not sure what to do about the case. I have three dual Tualatin builds, so I might sacrifice one of them for the case.

Ultimate 486 Benchmark | Ultimate 686 Benchmark | Cyrix 5x86 Enhancements | 486 Overkill Graphics | Worlds Fastest 486

Reply 73 of 101, by flupke11

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At the moment, parts is not what I lack, it's precious time to build them and hone them to stability.

Systems to build with available parts:
a) Duallies
- Abit BP6 with 2XCeleron 533;
- Iwill Slot 2 with 2X Xeon PII;
- Tyan Tempest i5400XL S5392 with two X5460 to replace the hitherto unstable Supermicro X7DAE+
- Compaq i840 based Dual PIII 1,0 Ghz (or 1,4 Tuali, if I can get them to work)
- Compaq EDO-Ram based Quad PII Xeon server
- ...

b)Singlies
- ECS P6S5AT with 1,4 Tualatin+DDR
- MSI MS-6168 with Tualatin on Slot-1 Powerleap
- P60-based i430FX-based system (Intel's rip-off pt.1)
- Asus P3C2000 i820-based system (Intel's rip-off pt.2)
- MSI S423 with 1,3 P4 + 2,0 P4 (Intel's rip-off pt.3)
- ...

Reply 75 of 101, by KCompRoom2000

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I have a couple of MSI motherboards (an MS-6153VA that's in need of a recap and a Z97I AC) that I'd like to use for a couple builds. I was thinking about doing a P3+Voodoo3 rig with the MS-6153VA once I get its bad capacitor replaced and obtain some necessary parts (mainly a full ATX case with drive bays), maybe I'll do a Mini ITX sleeper build with the Z97I AC once I find an appropriate case.

I also hope to build a modern sleeper PC inside an old P4-era Micro ATX case (such as a Dell Dimension 4600 case) if I ever find say an old busted Dell Dimension with bad caps and a modern Micro ATX desktop to swap its parts into said case.

I still post here, but only occasionally.

Reply 76 of 101, by 386SX

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Hope to build again a 386DX40/486DLC config as I did years ago, with high end components. But I did the error of trashing some cases I had for having more space, thinking I'd not come back to those projects and instead now I'd have keep the one I had.. 🙁
I will start if I'll find an horizontal case with LCD frequency led hole and possibly as compact as possible. And then I'll look for the mainboard, I'd like a 386 with socket for cpu and fpu too supporting the Cyrix.
Sooner or later I'll begin that config.

Reply 78 of 101, by Standard Def Steve

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It's not something I can build, but I'd love to own one of those "quad core" G5s. I have absolutely no interest in Intel-based Macs. They're yet another x86 machine running yet another slow and bloated OS. But the old PowerPC rigs? Now those are cool as hell.

I've already maxed out and overclocked a dual G4 rig, but one of these days I'd love to crank up the air conditioning and just go to town on a quad core G5. I mean, what's not to like? You've got all of the easy to use modern stuff: PCIe, SATA, and cheap DDR2. But it's all on a totally exotic motherboard hosting a pair of liquid cooled, high clocked, dual-core PowerPC 970MPs. Bitchin!

Unfortunately, the only G5s I ever come across at garage sales are the single CPU 1.6 and 1.8GHz machines. My overclocked (1.5GHz) dual G4 runs circles around those things.

Standard Def Rigs
Super P3: PIII-S @ 1.63 GHz/FSB155 | 2GB DDR-310 | 6800GT AGP | 500GB 7200 RPM
Super G4: 2x PowerPC 7455 @ 1.5 GHz | 2GB DDR-333 | 7800GS AGP | 300GB 10k RPM
Super G5: 4x PowerPC 970 @ 2.5 GHz | 16GB DDR2-533 | x1950XT PCIe | 512GB SSD

Reply 79 of 101, by mastergamma12

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dionb wrote on 2020-02-29, 19:29:
PS/2 uptake in 486 and 586 era was... weird... […]
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foil_fresh wrote on 2020-02-26, 07:23:

i'd love to have a 486dx33 with turbo button/led display, SB16 and any suitable video card. Only thing that bothers me these days are ball mice/serial mice. Was having a PS/2 mouse port rare as heck with these old socket 3 systems?

PS/2 uptake in 486 and 586 era was... weird...

Basically all OEM systems were PS/2, both for keyboard and mouse - but virtually no AT-style systems had PS/2 keyboard and PS/2 mouse via riser was rare too.

i have a serial optical mouse and it is... terrible. 2 separate sensors that NEEDS the mousepad it ships with. someone decided to jam 2 barcode scanners together and called it a mouse. if you've thought about getting one, dont.

Ooh, Mouse Systems optical mice! Loved them. Got one after getting sick and tired of cleaning my balls and - far worse - rollers all the time. It was like having ascended into paradise (so long as my wrist wasn't too sweaty...). Come to think of it< I have one of these. Only reason I don't use it is that I've become something of a trackball fetishist and have a very nice serial Kensington Orbit for my old builds.

As for my dream builds:
- Olivetti M24, upgraded to NEC V30 and at least 640kB RAM, also an AdLib clone I made myself and a MusicQuest MIDI card. Have most of the bits required, but PSU is dead in a sparking, smoking way. I have a working M240 though and they supposedly share the same PSU...
- a 486DX33 system completely engineered to run Ultima 7, with Soundblaster clone I made myself and another MusicQuest MIDI card. Can do this now, just haven't gotten round to it.
- Alaris Leopard IBM 486SLC2 VLB board. Have this, working on it now. Maxed RAM to 16Mb, pairing it with PAS16 and Aztech WaveRider 32+ and a 512MB DOM. Hope to get it running this weekend 😀
- All UMC build, with UMC CPU, UMC chipset, UMC I/O, UMC VLB VGA, UMC NIC and if possible UMC cache and soundcard with UMC chips too. Have most of this, just struggling with the motherboard's battery.
- NexGen 5x86, preferably with NxVL VLB board. Unobtainium, at least, in working condition. But maybe I'll luck out, or decide to pay the going price for one one day...
- Any ALi Aladdin 7 system. Seems almost as unobtainium as the NexGen.
- MS-6168 system (i440BX with onboard Voodoo3), completely maxxed out, so 512MB RAM, Tualatin via compatible slocket, SLC SSD etc. Actually had this, but the video memory on the V3 died on me. Have a second board, but it refuses any Coppermine, let alone Tualatin :'(
- i820 or i840 system. Sounds easy, but these things just keep dying on me. I have both 40ns RDRAM and an MTH-on-a-stick, but a long line of Asus P3C-D and P3C-E boards are completely unresponsive. One day I'll get a working example.
- Tualatin 1400S on SiS635T board. Have this, my ultimate Win98SE system. 512MB DDR, GeForce3Ti200 (which I might upgrade to Gf4 one day), Voodoo2 and a nice SSD 😀

Of course, before I get all of this done I'll run out of ports on my KVM and I'm already out of ports on my mixer (2 sound cards per build does that...)

This might sound weird but where on the front io header did you attach your power button.

I went through 2 P3C-E's before I found out on the second one that I had the power button slightly on the wrong 2 pins and while it'd turn on, it wouldn't do anything.

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