VOGONS


First post, by Pierre32

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

They were tossing this at work after an upgrade, but kindly left it for me in the workshop when I asked. That was a whole covid ago, and I finally got my hands on it today. My gloved hands. Not knowing quite how long this had been in service, I was assuming it would contain an early Pentium AT board or some lame mATX setup. Thankfully it turned out more interesting.

PXL_20220225_004241478.jpg
Filename
PXL_20220225_004241478.jpg
File size
255.65 KiB
Views
533 views
File license
Public domain

I only ended up taking the internals, and that cute but incredibly gross keyboard.

Advantech PCA-6114-0B1:

Advantech PCA-6114-0B1.jpg
Filename
Advantech PCA-6114-0B1.jpg
File size
560.8 KiB
Views
533 views
File license
Public domain

Advantech PCA-6144S:

PXL_20220225_044945042.jpg
Filename
PXL_20220225_044945042.jpg
File size
547.11 KiB
Views
533 views
File license
Public domain

The SBC packs a 486DX4/100, 32MB EDO and a 128MB disk on chip. The CPU fan is seized, but apparently it was still working ok right up until the system was replaced.

Here's the video card, marked "HB-100B". All I know is that they were running composite CGA to that black & white monitor. No google hits for this card, but I did find a "HC-100" MFM controller made by Transteque. I suspect it's the same manufacturer: https://retrocmp.de/hardware/hc-100/hc100.htm

Transteque? HC-100B:

HC-100B video card.jpg
Filename
HC-100B video card.jpg
File size
523 KiB
Views
533 views
File license
Public domain

Does anyone know anything about that video card?

Last edited by Pierre32 on 2022-02-25, 10:18. Edited 4 times in total.

Reply 1 of 15, by Pierre32

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Here are the other cards. I've identified these and have their model information in the filenames. This system was used with some cameras to measure the speed of trains moving through an unloading area. When I eventually get it re-assembled and powered up again I should be able to play with the software too, although I don't have any trains or cameras. Maybe there's a way to have fun with this gear at home - open to ideas!

Data Translation DT2859 10837 CPX-7:

DATA TRANSLATION DT2859 10837 CPX-7.jpg
Filename
DATA TRANSLATION DT2859 10837 CPX-7.jpg
File size
500.13 KiB
Views
530 views
File license
Public domain

Data Translation DT2817 32 Line Digital IO:

Data Translation DT2817 32 Line Digital IO.jpg
Filename
Data Translation DT2817 32 Line Digital IO.jpg
File size
510.32 KiB
Views
530 views
File license
Public domain

Computer Boards Inc. 034957A :

Computer Boards Inc. 034957A .jpg
Filename
Computer Boards Inc. 034957A .jpg
File size
611.92 KiB
Views
530 views
File license
Public domain

Data Translation DT2803 Frame Grabber:

Data Translation DT2803 Frame Grabber.jpg
Filename
Data Translation DT2803 Frame Grabber.jpg
File size
789.16 KiB
Views
530 views
File license
Public domain
Last edited by Pierre32 on 2022-02-25, 10:23. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 3 of 15, by Sphere478

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

Oh that’s cool, that sbc looks like it supports pc104 stacked on it.

Those are some oddball cards… that one looks like a external scsi. But somehow I don’t think that’s what it is. The one with the 50 pin? internal connector on the I/O

The other one looks like a network card.. the one with the bnc connection

Sphere's PCB projects.
-
Sphere’s socket 5/7 cpu collection.
-
SUCCESSFUL K6-2+ to K6-3+ Full Cache Enable Mod
-
Tyan S1564S to S1564D single to dual processor conversion (also s1563 and s1562)

Reply 4 of 15, by keropi

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

nice save!
the HC-100B seems to be a cga/mda card to go with that small monitor
as for the rest they are pretty useless outside their indented (or similar environment)
when my brother was in that machine-refurbish business those cards were given away by the kilo ...

🎵 🎧 PCMIDI MPU , Orpheus , Action Rewind , Megacard and MK8330 soundcard website

Reply 6 of 15, by Pierre32

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
Schule04 wrote on 2022-02-25, 10:39:

Was the colored ribbon cable and box also part of the setup? I would have taken the case and crt but not the keyboard...

It was. Part of me wanted to keep it all together, but it would have just filled up more of my storage space forever. The monitor is composite black & white only, and would be full of that black stuff, so that was a no. Space was also an issue for the case, and they're common industrial cases anyway with no particular retro value (for me anyway).

keropi wrote on 2022-02-25, 10:34:
nice save! the HC-100B seems to be a cga/mda card to go with that small monitor as for the rest they are pretty useless outside […]
Show full quote

nice save!
the HC-100B seems to be a cga/mda card to go with that small monitor
as for the rest they are pretty useless outside their indented (or similar environment)
when my brother was in that machine-refurbish business those cards were given away by the kilo ...

Now all those weird industrial cards are listed for hundreds on ebay! Only list prices though - I don't see many takers when looking at completed items.

I'm thinking the digital I/O card could be fun if you could drive relays with it. But you'd still need software that can talk to it.

Reply 7 of 15, by keropi

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
Pierre32 wrote on 2022-02-25, 10:51:

Now all those weird industrial cards are listed for hundreds on ebay! Only list prices though - I don't see many takers when looking at completed items.

yes, they do list with those prices in hopes someone needs the exact same card for their production line so they will be in need and pay the price
they could be listed for years and ultimately end up in a landfill...

🎵 🎧 PCMIDI MPU , Orpheus , Action Rewind , Megacard and MK8330 soundcard website

Reply 8 of 15, by Horun

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

Nice find ! I remember searching for data on one of their older SBC boards before and hit lots dead ends. Will dig around but doubt will find any good info...

Hate posting a reply and then have to edit it because it made no sense 😁 First computer was an IBM 3270 workstation with CGA monitor.

Reply 10 of 15, by BloodyCactus

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

I have a PCA-6144, they are really nice boards. you can add 3 rom chips and burn a disk image on it and have a flash read only floppy drive. very cool.

--/\-[ Stu : Bloody Cactus :: http://kråketær.com :: http://mega-tokyo.com ]-/\--

Reply 11 of 15, by cyclone3d

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

I would have kept the case. I love those type of cases because they are really roomy and have great airflow.

If you don't have a server rack, you can just stack them on top of each other pretty much as high as you want because they are flat and really sturdy.

That case looks like it was also a 14 slot case. Nothing outside a case like that is going to handle the backplane so if you want to use the SBC, you will either need a case like that, build a custom case for the backplane, or get a smaller backplane.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header

Reply 12 of 15, by Pierre32

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

I got the system re-assembled on the bench, so I could have a look at the bespoke software it's running. Useless to me, but neat to see. And the startup sequence gave me some additional confirmation of the purpose of all the cards. This is CGA composite out to an old TV, snapped with a phone, so yeah looking crisp.

PXL_20220227_000221904.jpg
Filename
PXL_20220227_000221904.jpg
File size
465.27 KiB
Views
304 views
File license
Public domain
PC Hoarder Patrol wrote on 2022-02-26, 03:33:

The manuals & support files for the SBC / backplane are still available on their website at https://www.advantech.com/support - just type 6144S / 6114-0B into the search field

You love to see it. Turns out Data Translation Inc is still about too, but they don't seem to have any legacy product support on their site: https://www.datatranslation.eu/

But I did find a datasheet on retronn.de for the DT2817. Interesting that it appears to use a parallel port interface, and I've got some leads on software support now.

cyclone3d wrote on 2022-02-26, 04:11:

That case looks like it was also a 14 slot case. Nothing outside a case like that is going to handle the backplane so if you want to use the SBC, you will either need a case like that, build a custom case for the backplane, or get a smaller backplane.

Yep, might swap it for an 8 slot.

Attachments

  • Filename
    DT2817 Datasheet.pdf
    File size
    90.11 KiB
    Downloads
    6 downloads
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception

Reply 13 of 15, by Cuttoon

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Nice find!
That tiny system is really neat. Maybe you could simply shorten that PCA-6114, add a modern ATX micro power supply with external DC and create a really compact 486 in an ITX case or something.
Or you can keep the 19" and let it double as a garden parasol stand!

The 486 was actually produced until almost yesterday, especially the AMD 5x86-133. I have a few from 1998.
I suppose it's a well balanced, all 32-bit CPU with single voltage, pre "pentium" branding bs and dirt cheap in the end. If it's fast enough for a certain task?
That chip probably is a late production and will run fine up to about boiling temperature, never mind a broken fan.

keropi wrote on 2022-02-25, 13:05:

yes, they do list with those prices in hopes someone needs the exact same card for their production line so they will be in need and pay the price
they could be listed for years and ultimately end up in a landfill...

Well, the strangest things happen. Apparently, NASA used to scavenger for certain legacy parts so they wouldn't have to certify any modern replacement für old systems, same with some medical equipment.

But sorry, probably not to those exotic cards.

The marketing term is "longtail" - list a myriad of items without any marginal cost to it and eventually someone will buy one of them.

Usually not the landfill but actual recycling, at least for 1980s stuff - used to be very expensive gear, they weren't to stingy with the gold platings.

But as you went through with identifying them, you've already done more than 99 % of scrapyard owners. You might as well put them on the bay, maybe they'll ring someones alert, if not already listet.

Frame grabbers, analogue video in general, seems to be a dime a dozen - no one ever uses any of that professionally any more. HF gear is too much of a pain.
So, proceed if you have some kids to scare with horrible interlacing artefacts, etc... 😁

I like jumpers.

Reply 14 of 15, by Cuttoon

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
Sphere478 wrote on 2022-02-25, 10:04:

that one looks like a external scsi. But somehow I don’t think that’s what it is. The one with the 50 pin? internal connector on the I/O

Probably not. If you look up the two large AMD chips, you find a data sheet with, well, lots of mumbojumbo, but essentially, those things were used to measure time.
So, chances are, that external connector went to the business end of a photoelectric sensor array. That thing that starts the escalator or keeps the elevator doors open, but two of them.
(Just my guess, but sounds like a good way to measure the speed of trains.)
Those D-sub connectors were not specific to any task.
So, that card may have been built merely a few hundred times for that very proprietary use.

Sphere478 wrote on 2022-02-25, 10:04:

The other one looks like a network card.. the one with the bnc connection

Same thing for the BNC connector: 1980s tech for anything that needed a coax cable, a shielded connection for high frequency. So probably rather video, if you encounter it on anything strange. But this card looks to primitive to be video, so it's just an industrial connection to anything that needed to convey a simple signal dependable over some distance.

Btw., I wouldn't be too surprised if that whole rig used to be a six figure investment...

I like jumpers.

Reply 15 of 15, by Pierre32

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

CPU question. I don't need a fast 486 system in my collection right now. Seeing as I have a CGA card, and some other cards that fit the early period of DOS audio, I'd like to slow this thing down as much as possible.

Here are the supported CPUs listed in the SBC manual, and the jumper settings guide is attached:

PCA-6144S CPUs.jpg
Filename
PCA-6144S CPUs.jpg
File size
12.18 KiB
Views
122 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

I start to get lost in the weeds a little here. Would would make this board only support a DX CPU, not an SX? Is there any reason I couldn't put an SX-25 in, and do the jumper settings allow it? Taking the manual as gospel, it looks as if a DX-33 is the lowest I can go.

[edit] I'm thinking the DX2-50 jumper settings might be fine for an SX-25, since both CPUs use 25mhz bus. Thoughts?

Attachments