VOGONS


Reply 40 of 158, by Disruptor

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TrashPanda wrote on 2022-10-17, 12:22:

Ah I see another person who hates netburst but fails to realize that the majority of what netburst achieved went on to be integrated into the P3 architecture to become Core series of CPUs. Netburst wasn't a total failure, it was just implemented in a manner it wasn't compatible with and against the stupid speed race of the times.

Netbursts pipeline was a total fail that even got worse up to the 3.8 GHz Preshot with its 81 W power consumption in idle and 148 W maximum.
Of course the future SSE units, second core and hyperthreading could be added to P6 microarchitecture too, but due to Netburst's clock frequency madness the P6 architecture just has survived in mobile market.
The P6 architecture was quite successful in mobile market: Tualatin -> Banias -> Dothan -> Yonah (Core)
The reunification with the desktop line has been done with the Core 2 architecture, named Conroe. It shifted the mobile / core architecture to 64 bit.

Still the Netburst technology is for me a no go due to the immense high power consumption. This was because Intel relied in branch prediction and long pipelines to achieve clock frequency up to 10 GHz. Hyper threading just has been a way to reuse execution units in case of a pipeline stall; however it has prepared the path to multiprocessing on the desktop.
And everything past Netburst is too new for me.

Last edited by Disruptor on 2022-10-17, 15:32. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 41 of 158, by TrashPanda

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Disruptor wrote on 2022-10-17, 12:44:
TrashPanda wrote on 2022-10-17, 12:22:

Ah I see another person who hates netburst but fails to realize that the majority of what netburst achieved went on to be integrated into the P3 architecture to become Core series of CPUs. Netburst wasn't a total failure, it was just implemented in a manner it wasn't compatible with and against the stupid speed race of the times.

Netbursts pipeline was a total fail that ended in Preshot.
Of course the future SSE units could be added to P6 microarchitecture too, but due to Netburst's clock frequency madness the P6 architecture just has been suspended.

A lot of the advancements made with the Netburst Uarc did end up in the Core CPUs, the stupidly long pipeline did not. If you can see past the hate and go read up on the Core Uarc youll quickly see what the Intel engineers did, Core is pretty much a joining of the P3 Mobile core with the Netburst core sans the pipeline and stupid clock speed, they also bumped the cache which helped massively. (Yup thats a simplification but the joining was too complicated for this post)

Core really was one of Intel's biggest Wins, it was the one thing that saved the company which was in dire straights at the time due to how bad Netburst had been and just how strong AMD was at stripping Intel of market share.

Its part of the reason I just love that Core 775 era along with all the crazy things fabs did and oddball hardware they released, its was a great time to be a PC enthusiast.

*Im not saying Netburst was good, it was pretty damn terrible, Im saying that not all of it was bad and Intel made a ton of great improvements in the Uarc that survive today thanks to some crazy Intel engineers out of Israel.

Last edited by TrashPanda on 2022-10-17, 13:40. Edited 1 time in total.

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁

Reply 42 of 158, by debs3759

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I collect anything x86 , but my primary interest is 386 and later

See my graphics card database at www.gpuzoo.com
Constantly being worked on. Feel free to message me with any corrections or details of cards you would like me to research and add.

Reply 43 of 158, by TrashPanda

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debs3759 wrote on 2022-10-17, 13:39:

I collect anything x86 , but my primary interest is 386 and later

I still remember fondly the AMD 386 DX-40 I had and all the hours I lost playing Transport Tycoon Deluxe on it, it was one of the few games that CPU could handle perfectly even in late game.

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁

Reply 44 of 158, by Namrok

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chinny22 wrote on 2022-10-17, 11:54:
Realistically I'm not interested in anything below 486's which was our first PC. I wouldn't say no to something earlier to tinke […]
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Realistically I'm not interested in anything below 486's which was our first PC.
I wouldn't say no to something earlier to tinker with if someone offered it for next to nothing but even the 486's don't get much use with more capable computers in my collection.
My slot 1 builds get the most use, they can run most of my DOS/Win9x games without any compromise.
or my LGA775 XP build which runs later 9x titles though too my newest XP games just fine. Even though it does lack that retro feel.

This had been my line in the sand for identical reasons. A 486/66 was my families first PC, and a kid down the street put Doom on it and changed my life forever.

That having been said, I've found myself drawn to a NuXT lately. Mostly for games I've been trying to play lately that still run too damned fast. For example, on my K6-2+ 500, I need to use setmul and moslo to get Might & Magic 1 at an acceptable speed! Bard's Tale isn't far behind in that regard either. Populous 2 and Powermonger are bonkers on my P233. Although I suspect the NuXT will be too slow for those, but we'll see. In preparation for the NuXT to finally arrive, I've gathered a host of floppy images up through about 1989 to try on it.

Then I figured, while I have it, might as well noodle around in the earliest of x86 assembly, right? Before the instruction set grew to over 4000 pages of documentation. So I've been cross coding an ega sprite editor and adlib tracker in assembly that should run on it just fine. Might even use them to start working on my own Ultima style game. I've long wanted to learn my way around x86 assembly and DOS, and it's been a great motivation to finally get going on that.

Win95/DOS 7.1 - P233 MMX (@2.5 x 100 FSB), Diamond Viper V330 AGP, SB16 CT2800
Win98 - K6-2+ 500, GF2 MX, SB AWE 64 CT4500, SBLive CT4780
Win98 - Pentium III 1000, GF2 GTS, SBLive CT4760
WinXP - Athlon 64 3200+, GF 7800 GS, Audigy 2 ZS

Reply 45 of 158, by BitWrangler

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Solo761 wrote on 2022-10-17, 08:17:

Where I live isn't especially humid, but metal parts sometimes do rust. So I've been thinking about long term storage and how to prevent that, maybe vacuum bags for clothes storage with some desiccant packs would help?

I'm only worried what would happen to electrolytic caps if I suck the air out, it's not 100% vacuum, but it would be lower than atmospheric pressure...

The vacuum you can pull on them with even a heavy duty vacuum cleaner is relatively minor, might only be equivalent to the air pressure at 10,000ft, where plenty of ppl in Colorado etc use computers. And they'd see less than that when they got sent air freight at 50,000 ft or so. Basically you're limiting the oxygen available for corrosion as well as sealing out humidity. Caps might burst while they are stored like that, but they might burst sitting on shelf over that same time span, it's what aged out caps do.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 46 of 158, by TheMobRules

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I'd say my lower bound would be at 286 level, basically anything that allows for decent 16-color EGA gameplay, think early Sierra/LucasArts stuff and the like. Monochrome and CGA stuff feels too primitive for my taste, even back when I was a kid and some people still had B/W monitors or TVs it has always been really unappealing to me. I do have some XT clone stuff in mint condition that is quite fun to fool around with, I have a spot for clunky FDDs and HDDs but the slowness of it all is almost unbearable.

Most of my interest gravitates around IBM compatible stuff from early to mid-90's (got my first PC in late 93, a 486SX-40), and lately I've had kind of an obsession with quirky "wild west" stuff from that era (EISA, VLB, other custom pre-PCI local buses, SCSI). While I'd be willing to explore other platforms (Amiga, Atari ST and the like) it's really not a viable option where I live as there was never much of a market for that (other than 8-bit Spectrum clones).

My interest quickly plummets starting with Socket 478, so anything after that I don't care much about even though I have some stuff. I guess that there's a few reasons for that with hardware becoming really streamlined by that point, and I also associate that era with work, which is not fun. But mainly it is software related, I hate Win9X with a passion, I always have even when they were new... 2000/XP is OK I guess, but again, I had to deal with those at work for a long time so it's not something I feel like revisiting very often.

Reply 47 of 158, by Jasin Natael

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I have nostalgia as far back as 386 era. My first PC was a crummy Packard Bell Legend with a 386sx.
That said, I don't currently have anything older than a 486 and I probably never will.

My favorite era is Socket 7. That was the time that I spent the most time with back in the day. The first machines I ever upgraded/built etc.
For me there would likely be a point where I would consider things to be "too new" rather than "too old"
At least currently I have zero interest in anything XP and later. I suppose I should have some nostalgia for this era but I don't.
So hardware wise....I guess Athlon XP/Pentium 4 era is my cuttoff time if I had to choose one.

Reply 48 of 158, by acl

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For me :
1996 -> 2010

But it's only because i started using computers around 96. It was probably also fun before. But for me, fun in hardware died in 2010

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The only newer piece of tech i own are a GTX960 (on a 2009 X58 system) and a SteamDeck

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My collection (not up to date) | My builds (not up to date)

Reply 49 of 158, by gerry

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once i would take anything but now i have too many machines really. for using i still use P3 and later 32 bit and core duo era 64 bit as 'retro' or vintage

mostly the 64bit with windows 7 and dosbox, patches and gog for games though and for the most part there just isnt that much a 32 bit can do that the aforementioned cannot

in fact even the very latest PC can do all that stuff too, just that it would be expensive!

i still cant bring myself to let any go though!

Reply 50 of 158, by Unknown_K

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My main machines for the last 10 years have been other people's cast offs, before that I used to build new machines every few years.

Anyway, as far as collecting goes I would say the best time for me was probably early 486 to early Pentium just because of all the different systems BUS (ISA, EISA, MCA, VLB) and all the CPU makers (AMD, IDT, Cyrix, Intel, Winchip, etc.). You also had a decent option for operating systems back when OS/2 was still around and major competition in programming and office apps.

I got heavily into 68k (and later PPC) Mac and Amiga/ST when those systems were all being junked, and they were fun to mess with since I was used to nothing but PC since the 286 eras. X86 Mac isn't something that I care about and neither is PPC Amiga.

I was thinking about trying out CP/M era machines but never did.

Collector of old computers, hardware, and software

Reply 51 of 158, by Turbo ->

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Not an easy way of answering the topic's question. My retro flavor is from 286 to P4 systems and AMD /others equivalent. For playing games on windows XP system I have a dual-core PC, but I don't consider Windows XP as retro at this time yet. However, I take any PC hardware I can get my hands on because I can exchange less wanted hardware for the one I would like to have. This approach doesn't come with its flaws: I am critically running out of storage space. So the question in hand would also be: when is enough?

Reply 52 of 158, by Con 2 botones

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486 would be the older I would go (don´t own any yet, unfortunately).
Socket 939, 775 the newer.

Slot 1/A era being my favourite.

Reply 54 of 158, by pan069

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My main era of interest is 286, 386, 486 and early Pentium, say time period 1985 to 1995. But I have a strong affinity for 8086 as well since that was the first PC we had in the home back then but I don't have any PC/XT machines atm. Anything late 90's and beyond is basically junk to me.

Reply 55 of 158, by Ensign Nemo

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For me, a lot of it comes down to how well modern hardware can reproduce the experience. Systems like the C64 can be emulated very well, but it doesn't seem the same without the old hardware. Running DOSbox doesn't feel the same as running an old DOS machine. I also have a crt that I can easily hook up to an old computer, but most modern computers don't have the VGA out.

Another thing I need to remind myself is whether or not I'd actually use it. I recently saw a Commodore Pet for $25 come up locally. It looked mint, but it would just sit around my apartment untouched.

There are some systems that still offer features unavailable or rare on modern computers that are worthwhile. In addition to the crt example, the Atari ST is a good example because it has midi out.

The Windows XP era is an interesting case. I have some games that don't run well on Windows 10 that would be perfect on an XP system, but I have a hard time justifying buying an XP computer. The XP experience just doesn't feel retro to me, so I would only buy a system if it is both cheap and small. While some thin clients meet those requirements, I haven't found any with a GPU that meets the requirements that I need. Same goes for laptops from that era.

Reply 56 of 158, by Jo22

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TheMobRules wrote on 2022-10-17, 15:47:

I'd say my lower bound would be at 286 level, basically anything that allows for decent 16-color EGA gameplay [..]

Hi, the 80286 fits the EGA/VGA (SVGA) era nicely, I think.
Since EGA is a synthetic device, just like VGA, there's no need to get a real EGA card.
- Unless scan lines and 60 Hz are considered a must have feature. 😀

VGA compatibles normally support EGA quite good, even have a dedicated emulation in silicon.
And can be configured for EGA monitors, evem (have secondary DE-9 connector for TTL monitors).

Another advantage is the full amount of EGA memory.
The historic EGA cards do have a lousy 64KiB of RAM installed and must be upgraded manually to 256KB.
Which is understandable, considering the 1980s price tag on RAM.

VGA on the other hand,
starts with a 256KB of minimum out-of-box, providing full set of EGA modes.

Without that full memory,
even 1980s era DOS games using EGA may have graphical glitches:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVjVQ_L11Vc&t=1300

Of course, later EGA compatibles have the full 256KB and are just as good.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 58 of 158, by Anonymous Coward

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I own some Socket7 boards, CPUs and PCI cards, but generally speaking I'm not interested in anything with PCI slots. I used to have 8-bit home computers (TI, Atari, Commodore etc), but I sold them years ago. I'm willing to go back as far as S100 stuff from the 70s, but I never had a chance to own any of that. Even when I started collecting in the mid 90s, Altairs were expensive (but cheaper than at present of course). I'm willing to get into anything if it's cheap and fun...and of course parts should be easy to find.
I used to have an Amiga 500 and a fully loaded A2000HD both in mint condition, but they became too much of a liability (power supplies, floppy drives and monitors), so I sold them before they went tits up. I grew up with an Amiga, so after all those years I finally tired of it. Emulation is good enough for me!

"Will the highways on the internets become more few?" -Gee Dubya
V'Ger XT|Upgraded AT|Ultimate 386|Super VL/EISA 486|SMP VL/EISA Pentium

Reply 59 of 158, by TrashPanda

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Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-10-17, 20:02:
For me, a lot of it comes down to how well modern hardware can reproduce the experience. Systems like the C64 can be emulated ve […]
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For me, a lot of it comes down to how well modern hardware can reproduce the experience. Systems like the C64 can be emulated very well, but it doesn't seem the same without the old hardware. Running DOSbox doesn't feel the same as running an old DOS machine. I also have a crt that I can easily hook up to an old computer, but most modern computers don't have the VGA out.

Another thing I need to remind myself is whether or not I'd actually use it. I recently saw a Commodore Pet for $25 come up locally. It looked mint, but it would just sit around my apartment untouched.

There are some systems that still offer features unavailable or rare on modern computers that are worthwhile. In addition to the crt example, the Atari ST is a good example because it has midi out.

The Windows XP era is an interesting case. I have some games that don't run well on Windows 10 that would be perfect on an XP system, but I have a hard time justifying buying an XP computer. The XP experience just doesn't feel retro to me, so I would only buy a system if it is both cheap and small. While some thin clients meet those requirements, I haven't found any with a GPU that meets the requirements that I need. Same goes for laptops from that era.

Windows Xp is 21 years old(2001) ...What exactly do you consider old enough to fit the retro tag ?

Say we take Windows 98 ...its only 3 years older than XP ..how about Windows 95 thats 6 years older than XP, Time is a funny thing and I think some people dont realise that we are now closer to 2050 than we are to 1980, for me anything before Core 2 is old enough to hit that retro tag ..anything before the Pentium 75 is now old enough to be a museum piece.

We could go back even further .. Windows 3.11 is 1993 what makes 93 any more retro than 2001 ..its less than 10 years difference, again I think its that peoples idea of time is a little skewed and we forget just how old XP actually is.

What's comforting to me is that in a few years Core2 will be in that retro area and I will be able to pass on all the tinkering knowledge I have from my collection, its going to be a fun time for sure, the Core2 era was pretty crazy.

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁