Irregardless? I'm pretty sure it's regardless or irrespective.
Keatah, from all your comments it sounds like you were traumatized by the Amiga. Poor kid, you must have been very disappointed.
Large sound samples, bigger programs, more graphics but the same drive speed... not a good combination.
I think it's a case of the rest of the hardware outpacing the affordable mass storage options and the boom in 16 bit machines lead to accelerated development of storage technology.
8 bits weren't exactly pushing the speed limit of floppies, I think disk capacity and size was the key issue there.
If the 500 had included an IDE interface like the 600 from the start, it would have been a much better machine but I'm not sure if IDE existed yet and we couldn't even get 3.5" drives let alone 2.5".
I was! It was a very bad experience. And it nearly made me dump my original Apple II paraphernalia. I thought the Amiga was going to be the end-all be-all. It was not. I had visions of playing enhanced arcade games and doing Babylon-5 graphics. None of that came to pass. I even got thrown out of the computer store when I tried to copy the IBM emulator (Transformer) IIRC. Assholes let me spend 30 minutes copying disks and then took them away right as I finished the last one. Other stores like The TRS-80 Computer Center and Compu-Shop (Apple) were more than helpful in pretending to be busy while we messed with their systems. They seemed to encourage it.
Anyways.. I couldn't understand why with three powerful custom chips and a 7MHz 16/32-bit processor and gobs of memory, why no one did arcade-exact copies of even the most rudimentary games. And the remakes that did come out had all these puffy overcolored sprites and they looked gay. The sound clicked and it was a dead giveaway it is a lame-ass recording. Not synthesized like on the Apple II or 400/800 or 64. And combined with the Wico Command Control "slushsticks" I was in gaming hell. I had to get away.
I'm not sure what was driving the expansion of storage options in those days. Storage seems to have kept pace with industry demands rather nicely I thought. But the consumer grade 16-bit computers using 3.5" drives were lousy through and through.
To directly answer the question of if IDE was available at the Amiga-500 introduction. No.
The connector was established in 1986, and it was intended to remain compatible with ST-506. IDE as it is commonly known was officially standardized around 1994, but disks as early as 1990 adhered to the protocol. I got one in 1992, and it still works on a "modern" motherboard.
If the designers of the A500 were thinking about IDE, they would have had to use an interim solution known as XT-IDE.
I don't know what the speed of the stock Amiga floppy drives were, but they had to be slower than the Apple Disk II. I swear! And if they weren't then they were ill-chosen for the task. If you're going to be pushing around a lot of bits then you best damned well have the infrastructure.
Having come from the Apple II ecosphere I couldn't understand why the Amiga disks were unreliable. I was used to the Apple being able to format seemingly everything (including the headcleaner disk*). I was unaccustomed to having to get certain brands and densities for the 3.5" drive. And even then I kept losing data from time to time. But not as bad as the 1541 for the 64.
I even recall there being almost imperceptible delays from when I'd press enter till the time the motor spun-up and engaged the spindle. Then we had to wait for head to swing into position. And endure more delay while info was located within the track, sorted and placed on the interface bus. And once that happened it had yet to make its way through the custom chips.. ughh!!
SD DD QD HD ED SS DS - all of these abbreviations related to the 3.5" formfactor. No one told me what to use, so I tried them all. They worked, but then some failed. Fuck that. Stick the goddammned thing in there and be done with it! I don't want to be dick'n around with awkward density differences when I could be doing warez.
As far as the bitness of the IIGS, can't we just go by the CPU datasheet? It's been done that way for years.
* No not really. But in 35+ years of using the Disk II and 4000 disks later, I've only had 4 or 5 disks go bad. Add 2 more to casualty list if you count the BBS boot and log disks - these were near 24/7 operation for months on end. Impressive for a medium all these naysayers said wouldn't last half-way to the next century. And here we are, almost 15 years into it. They just drummed up fear to make you replace your stuff and buy their next product, the bastardized 3.5 format.
TRIVIA: The Apple Disk II unit transfers information at 156,000 bits per second. Impressive for consumer hardware done up in 1978.
Edited by Keatah, Thu Aug 21, 2014 1:02 AM.