Look at this beauty that I picked up from the post office today. ☺️
Usually when Tandy 1000 machines turn up on eBay, they tend to be offered by sellers in North America. So I was pleasantly surprised to see this Tandy 1000 EX listed by someone in Greece, a few weeks ago. And for a reasonable price too!
Also, it looks to be in good condition, and thankfully it didn't have a cyrillic keyboard . 😅 It has a US keyboard layout, which is perfect for me. (Unlike our Belgian and German neighbors, thankfully we in the Netherlands standardized on the US layout early on in the PC era.)
It doesn't have any expansion cards installed. I found this one project on GitHub for a three-in-one card for these models that maxes out the amount of RAM, adds an XTIDE interface and a serial port. Hopefully I'll be able to buy one of those card preassembled somewhere. I don't yet trust my soldering skills enough to risk damaging this fine retro machine. I would also like to upgrade it with a NEC V20 CPU and a CGA2SCART adapter, to pimp it out as much as I can. I'm not sure about putting in a Gotek drive. It would probably be more practical, but I kind of like that wonderfully clunky 5.25" floppy drive on the side. 😁 Any additional suggestions for upgrades are welcome!
The plug was removed from the power cable, probably because Greece has a different plug than we do. (We use German plugs in the Netherlands.) At first, it made me a bit concerned about whether this was originally a North American machine that would require 120V power instead of our 230V, but then I was reassured about the "warranty void if opened" stickers on the bottom, that contained the notices in 4 European languages, including, amusingly, Dutch.
I'm still amazed at the good condition this thing is in. There was some Styrofoam protection around it in the cardboard box it was shipped in, but not all that much. Thankfully, it survived the journey in tact.
The first thing (after a wipe with a cleaning cloth) will be to stick some new felts to the bottom for protection. Then I'll mount a plug to the power cable, and then I'll switch it on, to see if it works. I'll have to connect it through composite video for now, since I don't have a CGA2SCART adapter yet. Do any of you know if this model outputs any video over the composite output port on startup? Or does this have to be enabled somehow? I guess I'll just find out. This is going to be fun!
Hmmm, now that I've had this thing lying on the floor in my apartment for a bit while I typed this post, I'm getting a faint whif of that typical smell that you notice when you open up the PC case of someone who smokes. 😬 Better open it up to see if it needs a bit of cleaning or vacuuming on the inside...