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-   -   Upgrade (http://www.stockly.com/forums/showthread.php?t=587)

Geoff Harrison 03-16-2008 03:34 AM

Upgrade
 
I had two 4 slot motherboards in my AltairKit 8800 and it was getting kind of tight trying to fit in a CPU, memory cards, serial card, rom, and disk controller, so I upgraded to one of Grant's 18 slot motherboards. It's beautifully built, just like the rest of his cards, and works great.


Out with the old, in with the new. The old motherboards look kind of puny next to the new beast.

http://www.solivant.com/misc_images/..._oldandnew.jpg


Plenty of room to expand, if the power supplies can keep up.

http://www.solivant.com/misc_images/18slot_done.jpg

sje 03-16-2008 08:20 PM

Looks great; it reminds me of my 22 slot S-100 backplane in the IMSAI 8080 I put together so many years ago. The differences are that the front panel took up one slot and that I had only a few slot connectors soldered.

Question: From where are you getting the extra cards (serial, disk, etc.)? I'm strongly considering getting an Altair kit, but am holding back because of the lack of I/O cards and the possibility that Grant might do an 8800b kit.

----

On a totally different note, I found a small Canadian company that's selling a 6502 kit for CAN$159. It's a complete do-it-yourself using breadboard construction. There's no printed circuit board option nor is a fancy case available, but I suppose these could be made without too much trouble. Also, there's no front panel, but I suspect these could be done as well with an AVR microcontroller and a bunch of LEDs and latches.

Geoff Harrison 03-16-2008 09:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sje (Post 1158)
Question: From where are you getting the extra cards (serial, disk, etc.)? I'm strongly considering getting an Altair kit, but am holding back because of the lack of I/O cards and the possibility that Grant might do an 8800b kit.

The disk controller cards and 2SIO card are vintage ones from my 8800b, but they'll be going back in there as soon as I get replacements for them. I believe Grant has a 2SIO card available and he's planning a SuperAltair card that would replace both the disk controller and the 2SIO card as well as adding other functionality.

Geoff.

Grant Stockly 03-17-2008 11:48 AM

After the 680s go out I will start processing orders for 8800 kits. I think all of them are spoken for. There are a few add on options for them. The 2SIO (2 port serial card), PMC (1k ROM), 4MCS (4k ram), and the 18 slot motherboard. I'd been trying to ship Geoff that motherboard since December. :(

Quote:

Originally Posted by sje (Post 1158)
Looks great; it reminds me of my 22 slot S-100 backplane in the IMSAI 8080 I put together so many years ago. The differences are that the front panel took up one slot and that I had only a few slot connectors soldered.

Question: From where are you getting the extra cards (serial, disk, etc.)? I'm strongly considering getting an Altair kit, but am holding back because of the lack of I/O cards and the possibility that Grant might do an 8800b kit.

----

On a totally different note, I found a small Canadian company that's selling a 6502 kit for CAN$159. It's a complete do-it-yourself using breadboard construction. There's no printed circuit board option nor is a fancy case available, but I suppose these could be made without too much trouble. Also, there's no front panel, but I suspect these could be done as well with an AVR microcontroller and a bunch of LEDs and latches.


sje 03-17-2008 06:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Grant Stockly (Post 1161)
After the 680s go out I will start processing orders for 8800 kits. I think all of them are spoken for. There are a few add on options for them. The 2SIO (2 port serial card), PMC (1k ROM), 4MCS (4k ram), and the 18 slot motherboard. I'd been trying to ship Geoff that motherboard since December. :(

Sounds good to me. Do you have any pricing information for the optional cards available?

sje 03-18-2008 07:38 AM

A list of Altair S-100 boards
 
Perhaps this has been posted before, but here it is again:

http://www.virtualaltair.com/virtual...vac_boards.asp

It's a fairly comprehensive list of Altair brand boards, and many entries have links to original Altair advertising copy. There are some Altair 680 boards, too.

A wish list:

88-PMC8 (8 KB PROM board using 2708 EPROMs; need a programmer as well)
88-16MCS x3 (16 KB static RAM board; three for a total of 48 KB RAM)
88-2SIO (Dual port serial I/O)
88-VI/RTC (Vectored interrupt/real time clock; may need hacking to work with modern power supply)

Grant Stockly 05-26-2008 09:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sje (Post 1164)
Perhaps this has been posted before, but here it is again:

http://www.virtualaltair.com/virtual...vac_boards.asp

It's a fairly comprehensive list of Altair brand boards, and many entries have links to original Altair advertising copy. There are some Altair 680 boards, too.

A wish list:

88-PMC8 (8 KB PROM board using 2708 EPROMs; need a programmer as well)
88-16MCS x3 (16 KB static RAM board; three for a total of 48 KB RAM)
88-2SIO (Dual port serial I/O)
88-VI/RTC (Vectored interrupt/real time clock; may need hacking to work with modern power supply)

I've thought about making a 16MCS kit, but no one would ever buy it. It requires 32 $4.50 memory chips... I am making a modern memory upgrade which works along with vintage memory cards. Basically it can ignore requests to memory under 1k, 4k, 5k, 8k, 9k, etc. That would allow for a 1k, 4k, 1+4k, 1+4+4k vintage card.

An 88-VI/RTC card is probably going to happen for sure, but unlike the other expansion cards on the website.

I am toying with the idea of running Space Invaders on the Altair 8800. Making an I/O card for the controllers and a special LED display. This project would require an 88-VI/RTC card. :)


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