First post, by Baleog
I was raised in the northern part of Scandinavia in a small village, so naturally I didn't have any computer stores around. Therefore I don't have the same nostalgia for much of the stuff that others have on this forum. Me and a friend were the only ones that were really interested in computers but we just didn't have the knowledge back then for example when troubleshooting games that didn't work. Memory management, sound cards and graphics cards was back then a mystery for me (and sort of still is). But we had fun, and even though I don't work in IT today, I still have use of the things we learned way back then. I dont have the same patience today!
Anyway life happened and the computers i owned back in the day are long gone. But maybe 5 years ago I stumbled over a youtube video. I don't remember if it was LGR or the 8-bit guy or someone else but that was the starting point for collecting old computers. I fall in the category of people who prefer to tinker more than to actually use the computers but I do try to combine my musical interest with the computers I collect so that is where my priority lies.
I mentioned before that we didn't have computer stores - but we did have a library that had som computer magazines. And the only computers that i can clearly remember was a Gateway 2000 and a completely black computer. We thought it looked so cool. The specs weren't that important but just the way it looked was so modern. I have always remembered that it was called Indiana, but I had no idea it was a Fujitsu. Well, a couple of years ago I found an ad on marketplace, bad pictures with a pile of computers stacked on top of eachother. And within this pile there was a black computer... 26 scandinavian miles and 15 euros (!) later I finally had my own Indiana as well as like 10 other computers and a handful of CRTs. They had been the property of an old school years ago. Since then i have also collected most of the "essential" micro computers and a decent amount of midi gear.
This is a picture of my main retro PC in its original form. The chassis is a Fujitsu ICL Indiana. Originally it had a Pentium 75 or 90, but because of the Dallas clock battery (and some other reason that I now can't remember) I exchanged the motherboard and PSU for a Fujitsu Ergopro E-series. They are in the same range of computers so the swap was trivial. I had a hard time removing the bios password but I finally found the instructions on Fujitsu's current support page. The bios is unfortunately still very limited. The original CRT, keyboard and mouse was part of the package so it is a complete system.
200 MMX, upgraded from the ergopros P120.
Onboard video 2mb Mach64CT (cost reduced) paired with a Voodoo 2 12mb which I know is overkill for this system.
CF-Card and a spinning 4gb drive of some kind.
Orpheus Sound Card with PCMIDI MPU (Thank you for making this Keropi!)
Windows 95c Plus! with usb-support (works fine albeit slow with usb sticks after soldering headers to the mb)
Since this photo was taken i have tried to make my retro computer setup a little more discrete. But since I have a small apartment and don't have an extra room the only place for it is the living room. And some people will disagree but I just don't want visitors to see my setup and learn about my interest for several reasons. So hiding the computer and removing the CRT was necessary. Since I had acquired some rack units I decided to build a midi rack. So after ordering rails i bought some chipboard and caster wheels and Bob's your uncle. I will soon™ add some LED-lights and a smoked glass door but for now i think it looks a little better. And I can roll it out of the way when I need to.
The monitor is just a Samsung TV that i got from a second hand store. But it does have Scart, VGA, composite and more. I'm trying to find a rack that the monitor can stand on and that I can hide the Amiga under but I haven't found anything nice yet.
The Yamaha speakers are REALLY good, with a surprising amount of bass for the size and I haven't seen anyone else using them. They are modern speakers called Yamaha NX-50. They have two 3,5mm inputs and headphone out. I don't remember if they switch inputs automatically or if they get mixed but they work seamlessly with the Amiga/PC. People love the Roland MA-12Cs but if you want an alternative look at the Yamahas if you can find them used for a good price.
Midi router: 8+8 MTP Timepiece. Connected over parallel to the pc. Works great in Cubase
Mixer: Behringer RX1602 V1. Honestly not so pleased with this one. I'm getting a lot of hum and sounds bad when overdriven. But it's one of few cheap mixers with 8 stereo inputs.
EMU Proformance /1. Just temporarily fitted. For better Piano sounds when playing keyboard.
Sound canvases: rack mounted SC-55 with sound brush and a separate SC-55 and a SD-35. You all know about SC-55s. The SD-35 is apparently like a SC-55 MKII. I haven't experienced the buffer overflow with it that others have discussed on vogons.
Yamaha MU90R: Honestly my favorite midi unit. In my opinion it sounds much better than the Rolands in almost every case. But it was targeted more for the professional market.
Roland RA-50: A MT-32 in disguise. But sadly i can't get the mod that switches modes to work. I will have to revisit this one someday.
Roland D-110: A fun synthesizer. Cousin to the MT-32 and notoriously hard to program. It doesn't get much use but its nice to have. There are some patches/maps for Sierra games that allow you to use it directly.
Midiman Gman: Just temporarily fitted. Allegedly uses copies of Roland sounds. I will do a comparison some day.
MT32-Pi: I modified a Clumsy MIDI with a larger display and an encoder and 3d-printed case. This was the first midi unit I bought/built (and its possibly the best). But there is something special with vintage hardware.
I also have the Dreamblaster S2 and X2GS that I want to use in a Chill V and rack mount somehow.
Bonus pic of my Roland E-20 synthesizer that also is essentially an MT-32 with keys. I usually use a Roland PC-180 when im (badly) trying to record midi song covers in Cubase.
Thanks for watching my little setup. More computers will be added in this thread. Any feedback is welcome!