What retro activity did you get up to today?

Discussion about old PC hardware.

Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby AidanExamineer » 2014-7-12 @ 21:43

Installed a newer, punchier power supply into the Pentium II project this forum has been helping me with. Fancy, black, braided cables and way more SATA power than I need, but you can't tell there's anything weird from the front.
Image
Also, with the new power supply having a different fan orientation, it doesn't need the exhaust fan at the back of the case (which would just cause a pocket of turbulent air anyhow, rather than moving air through the case).
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby LunarG » 2014-7-12 @ 22:47

Does playing Diablo 2 and Need for Speed: High Stakes on my K6-III system count?

Oh, and I could mention buying a Hyundai ImageQuest V770+ for the very same system. Seeing as most of my gaming on this system is running at sub 1280x1024 resolution, I felt that a 17" CRT would fit this system better than a 17" LCD. Means dropping the desktop resolution to 1152x864 to get a livable 75Hz refresh, but that's a small price to pay to have a lovely CRT hooked up to this system. I'm actually finding myself gaming more and more on this system for some reason.
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Win98se : K6-3+ 500MHz, 256MB RAM, 80GB HDD, Matrox Millennium G400 MAX, Voodoo 2, SB AWE64 Gold.
DOS6.22 : Intel DX4, 64MB RAM, 1.6GB HDD, ELSA Winner 1000PRO, GUS 1MB, SB16.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby King_Corduroy » 2014-7-13 @ 05:28

konc wrote:Just finished transferring all XT-Hercules (or simcga) capable games I own and could think of to a Schneider Euro XT.
Time to see now on a so-rare-yourself-and-your-geeky-things Saturday night what actually runs on the 512KB RAM this XT beauty has.
Sorry about the phone photos, I reallly don't know any better way to get a screenshot out of an XT running DOS 3.3 :)
(that amber... it can't be just memories, somehow I love it more than I probably should!)

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Image


GOOD LORD! I am so jealous, I've always thought that all in one style design like the Atari machines looked cool. lol

The only retro thing I did today was bid on a 5 1/4" floppy diskette drive on ebay. That's right I finally broke down and ordered one. :P
Check me out at Transcendental Airwaves on Youtube! Also wtf, why are whoppers so good?!
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2014-7-13 @ 07:46

LunarG wrote:Does playing Diablo 2 and Need for Speed: High Stakes on my K6-III system count?

Oh, and I could mention buying a Hyundai ImageQuest V770+ for the very same system. Seeing as most of my gaming on this system is running at sub 1280x1024 resolution, I felt that a 17" CRT would fit this system better than a 17" LCD. Means dropping the desktop resolution to 1152x864 to get a livable 75Hz refresh, but that's a small price to pay to have a lovely CRT hooked up to this system. I'm actually finding myself gaming more and more on this system for some reason.


Of course it counts :)

Sometimes I wish I had a nice CRT, but I simply don't have the space. I have a beautiful Samsung 24" 1920 x 1200 and it's pretty much as good as it gets for my retro needs. Has 4:3 aspect ratio modes and all of that. Best is to play early 3D games in 1600 x 1200 with crystal clear pixels via DVI. A CRT would struggle here via VGA.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby LunarG » 2014-7-13 @ 13:16

Yeah, CRT's struggle with high resolutions. My last "pre-retro" CRT could handle 1600x1200 or perhaps even higher at low refresh rates, but it never looked really sharp, and wasn't usable to be honest. Anything above 1280x960 on a CRT started looking a bit blurry to my eyes. I do however find that "smaller" CRT's, at resoutions of 1024x768 or so, look really nice, and I sometimes get my doubts that LCD was really a step forward, despite using a nice Dell Ultrasharp for my day-to-day usage :)
WinXP : PIII 1.4GHz, 512MB RAM, 73GB SCSI HDD, Matrox Parhelia, SB Audigy 2.
Win98se : K6-3+ 500MHz, 256MB RAM, 80GB HDD, Matrox Millennium G400 MAX, Voodoo 2, SB AWE64 Gold.
DOS6.22 : Intel DX4, 64MB RAM, 1.6GB HDD, ELSA Winner 1000PRO, GUS 1MB, SB16.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2014-7-13 @ 13:20

Yea with LCDs you really want native resolution. Although most scale 1024 x 768 really nice for some reason.

What did I do today?

Continued benchmarking Pentium 4 chips for my Voodoo 2 project. Benchmarked the 3.2, 2.8, 2.4, 2.0 and started with the 1.6 Willamette and Northwood. Will go to bed early, alarm is set, 4am Word Cup final :lol:
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby sliderider » 2014-7-13 @ 13:55

AidanExamineer wrote:Installed a newer, punchier power supply into the Pentium II project this forum has been helping me with. Fancy, black, braided cables and way more SATA power than I need, but you can't tell there's anything weird from the front.
Image
Also, with the new power supply having a different fan orientation, it doesn't need the exhaust fan at the back of the case (which would just cause a pocket of turbulent air anyhow, rather than moving air through the case).
Image


I just recently upgraded the 550W PSU from my Phenon II x4 machine to an 850W 80+ unit so I now have a the 550W to put in some other box. Actually, I even still have the 450W unit that originally came with the case that I am using for my main machine so I really have to get some more machines assembled soon. :lol:
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby jwt27 » 2014-7-13 @ 17:09

Been dumpster diving today, found a bag with sixty-eight 1000MHz Coppermines.
Also a completely trashed Laser XT clone and two cracked dual Slot 1 boards.

had to leave it all there, unfortunately :(
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby smeezekitty » 2014-7-13 @ 17:27

jwt27 wrote:
had to leave it all there, unfortunately :(

Dang! Why's that?

Anyway I made this post from a 486
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby keropi » 2014-7-13 @ 17:32

I've been testing my el-cheapo amiga midi interface and asking questions to make it electrically safer (it's based on an older PD schematic, I stripped the extra out/thru/in ports and only have 1xOUT for playback). Unfortunately very few games support midi playback...

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made a quick vid with SQ4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgaV7cT ... PuyYv8voQA

other than that I am watching some networked classic xboxes copy data to each other... boring LOL
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby jwt27 » 2014-7-13 @ 17:32

smeezekitty wrote:
jwt27 wrote:
had to leave it all there, unfortunately :(

Dang! Why's that?

Anyway I made this post from a 486
The XT and dual slot boards were beyond repair, and if I wanted the P3's I had to buy them all at once (at about, €100/kg). Not worth it IMO.

Got some other stuff though, right now I'm trying to figure out what's what. Will post here if I find anything special :)
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby smeezekitty » 2014-7-13 @ 17:37

jwt27 wrote:
smeezekitty wrote:
jwt27 wrote:
had to leave it all there, unfortunately :(

Dang! Why's that?

Anyway I made this post from a 486
The XT and dual slot boards were beyond repair, and if I wanted the P3's I had to buy them all at once (at about, €100/kg). Not worth it IMO.

Got some other stuff though, right now I'm trying to figure out what's what. Will post here if I find anything special :)

Of course cracked boards are next to useless. But one that that I really don't get (and it makes me mad)
it how people insist on either selling it or throwing it out so noone can use it. What's so bad about
giving it away for free? Anyway if it were in a dumpster I would have stole it...
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby jwt27 » 2014-7-13 @ 18:08

smeezekitty wrote:Of course cracked boards are next to useless. But one that that I really don't get (and it makes me mad)
it how people insist on either selling it or throwing it out so noone can use it. What's so bad about
giving it away for free? Anyway if it were in a dumpster I would have stole it...


This was on a recycling company (where I go quite often to search for old junk). They're not going to give stuff away for free ;)

Anyway some of the stuff I did take included an 8086 mainboard with 8 ISA slots, a CGA/MDA/composite RGB 8-bit card, and rather long 8-bit card with gameport, parallel port and various pin header connectors. All branded V-Tech... Maybe these cards came from that XT clone I found?

Also a Seagate ST-225 MFM drive with WDXT-GEN controller card (not sure if these will work together), and an Aztech/Rockwell Sound+modem card with OPL3 and SRS-3D.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby zstandig » 2014-7-13 @ 20:25

Okay, how about iron age retro?

I have an abacus, if you don't know what one is it's a tool that's useful for representing numerical data before paper and electricity were used. Mine has a frame with with 9 rows of beads. There's a bar that separates the upper beads (worth 5, 50, 500, etc) from the lower (worth 1, 10, etc)

It's a "Chinese" abacus containing 5 lower beads and 2 upper beads per row. The Japanese improved the design a long time ago, because they always improve stuff only this time tentacles were not involved. A "Japanese" abacus has 4 lower beads and 1 upper bead per row.

Story is, after about a decade and a half of not bothering to learn how to use it I decided to learn how to use it....but the "Japanese" style Abacus is now pretty much considered the standard, and me with my "Chinese" style abacus were out of date by a century or two (maybe more). When learning how to use one, it helps to have the same kind of abacus as the person in the videos....so rather than taking the easy route and buying a new one I decided to modify my abacus. Because I'm one of those people that refuses to buy something if I can do it/make it myself.

I know nothing of wood working, the cheap abacus from 15+ years ago was not made to be taken apart. Taking off one bead per row sounds simple, but it wasn't because holding everything in place was a bit weird(many profanities were exclaimed). I used a saw from my trusty pocket knife, which I never used before, even when a boy scout, and cut the Abacus apart and removed the extra beads.

Now the hard part was putting the damned thing back together and making it stay together. So naturally duct tape and super glue were to be used because I'm an amateur. So I had to glue the rows back in and keep them in while I glued the frame back together, and put on a layer of duct tape.

Then it hit me....I had nothing to brace the Abacus while it was drying,

Quickly thinking I grabbed a rubber band and managed to use that as a makeshift brace. Surprisingly it worked, I then put a layer of super glue and yet another layer of duct tape on to keep it secure and let it dry.

It looks like a highly intelligent redneck device now (a contradiction, this device has no business existing). But it works and that's what matters.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2014-7-13 @ 21:02

Hehe cool story!

Maybe a moderator could move this entire thread to Milliways. Then it doesn't have to be just about Discussion about old PC hardware and Retro PCs :happy:
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Standard Def Steve » 2014-7-13 @ 22:21

It's not considered retro computing by any stretch of the imagination, but today I installed Windows 7 along with some other software on an x58/Corei7-920 rig I put together for $40. I built it out of parts I had lying around--the only component I had to actually buy was the HDD--and I scored 2TB for $40! I'm going to hook it up to the old 1080i RPTV in the basement and use it as a secondary rig. It should have a fair bit more grunt than what I currently use as Basement HTPC--an old Opteron 185 for Socket 939.

I'll eventually wipe Win7 from the Opteron system and turn it into a dedicated XP gaming box. It's perfect for that--dual core K8 at 3GHz, a couple of 8800GTSs in SLI, and an X-Fi Ti Fatality. A heck of a lot more power than my current XP box--a Tualatin-1585 with a 6800GT.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2014-7-13 @ 22:31

Standard Def Steve wrote:I'll eventually wipe Win7 from the Opteron system and turn it into a dedicated XP gaming box. It's perfect for that--dual core K8 at 3GHz, a couple of 8800GTSs in SLI, and an X-Fi Ti Fatality. A heck of a lot more power than my current XP box--a Tualatin-1585 with a 6800GT.


Nice! Tualatin and a 6800GT, what a beast :)
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby brostenen » 2014-7-14 @ 19:26

Not exactly computer-retro activity. Well....
My retro, was to attend at my girlfried's birthday. Yes. Birthday = retro. ;-)
Gave her a Playstation-1, as she wanted to get into her childhood gaming again.
(she has been talking about this for the last 6 or 7 month's)
That makes double retro. :-D
Don't eat stuff off a 15 year old never cleaned cpu cooler.
Those cakes make you sick I tell.... (never tried though)

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001100 010010 011110 100001 101101 110011
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Holering » 2014-7-16 @ 08:52

AidanExamineer wrote:Installed a newer, punchier power supply into the Pentium II project this forum has been helping me with. Fancy, black, braided cables and way more SATA power than I need, but you can't tell there's anything weird from the front.
Image
Also, with the new power supply having a different fan orientation, it doesn't need the exhaust fan at the back of the case (which would just cause a pocket of turbulent air anyhow, rather than moving air through the case).
Image


Wow that is a very nice looking pentium 2 box. The black and green give a striking appearance, and there's no denying how cool a slot pentium 2 goes with that. Major props.

Why the heck isn't there low power consumption legacy hardware? Could you imagine a mobo with pentium 2, geforce mx 200, ram, sound blaster awe64, midi daughterboard, and ram on a single small pcb (or perhaps a single chip)? I've no doubt that it'd be possible in a low power, small form factor at least. Heck Microsoft would benefit from releasing new Windows 9X licenses. Should at least be more beige cases available with black-green displays and big metal keys.

Only retro thing I've done so far is removing my Windows 9X HDD. I'm waiting for an icy dock 5.25" to 3.5" bay with additional 2.5" hdd spaces.
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Re: What retro activity did you get up to today?

Postby Standard Def Steve » 2014-7-16 @ 18:05

The Pentium M's humongous performance in 3DMark99 persuaded me to do some more Dothan vs Athlon 64 processor benchmarking. I've always known about Dothan's excellent performance on desktop motherboards, but it shines like a crazy ass star on DDR2/PCIe based i915 boards. I'm even considering using Dothan w/ GTX 260 for my upcoming XP Box Upgrade, instead of Opteron w/ 8800 SLI. Power consumption is much lower.

Was just blasting through F.E.A.R. on Dothan @ 2.7GHz/GTX-260 with everything cranked. Nice, smooth performance. I just love this CPU. Why Intel only made it for laptops is beyond me. PM on the desktop with a 667+FSB would have given AMD something to F.E.A.R. during the Socket 754-939 days. :happy:

Mau1wurf1977 wrote:
Standard Def Steve wrote:I'll eventually wipe Win7 from the Opteron system and turn it into a dedicated XP gaming box. It's perfect for that--dual core K8 at 3GHz, a couple of 8800GTSs in SLI, and an X-Fi Ti Fatality. A heck of a lot more power than my current XP box--a Tualatin-1585 with a 6800GT.


Nice! Tualatin and a 6800GT, what a beast :)


Unfortunately it's only a beast in 3D. The VIA chipset severely hampers the 6800GT's 2D performance. Still, after reading your phenomenal Voodoo2 processor scaling project, I'm thinking of installing Win98, throwing my 9800 Pro back in for 2D/D3D, and a pair of V2s.
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