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Yet another "which model should I get" thread.


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#26 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:56 PM

I think the LC2 is a bit too modern for my tastes. I have an Imac G3 Slot Loader and a Power Mac G4.. I got the Imac for $15 at a garage sale and the next weekend I got the Powermac G4 for $5 at a different yard sale. Both work. I figure  since I already have two late 1990's /  early 2000's Apple computers I want to get something from the 1980s. 

 

 

 

I had a //e growing up, in my early 30's I got a //c cause the price was right but eventually my answer was a mac LC2 (much rather had the LC3 but I found the gimped lc2 for a buck) and apple IIe card, now I have the exact same compatibility as the IIgs for the 8 bit machines, and a 32 bit 68020 mac with hard drives, modern disk drives and hooks up to a VGA monitor lol

 

course I sold that and the //c setup cause after another decade of apple // I remembered why I wanted to jump ship so bad, but that's a different topic



#27 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:01 PM

Thanks for the info. Space is not a concern so I'm probably going to start with a IIe or GS. Then at some later point I'll get a IIc since I love the look and small size. Back in the day we could only have one computer at a time but as adults we can get every Apple / Mac ever made if we can afford it. :-)

If space is a concern, then the IIc might be your best choice.
Just remember that you may never have a Mockingboard, speech board, accelerator board, etc... 
It's definitely a good machine but there's just some things it's never going to do.
The IIc Plus is a IIc with a fast mode that needs an external 5.25" drive for better compatibility.  And it has all the IIc's limitations

The IIgs is a nice machine with unique features, but you have to decide what you want to do to know it it's for you or not.

Some form of IIe will do everything but iigs specific stuff and it's more expandable than the  IIc.
 

I have a Laser 128EX I'm going to use for most of my stuff until I can rebuild my IIgs.  It's okay but I need to drop in a ROM cloned from the Apple for better compatibility with some copy protections.
 



#28 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:10 PM

I'm thinking the IIe is what I will end up with unless I can find a GS on Ebay that isn't price gouged. And yes, I will most likely branch out and get at least the IIc. I have a C64 and 128, Atari 400 800xl XEGS.so it wouldn't be the first time I have bought different versions of the same basic platform. :-)

In that case, I still recommend a //e enhanced or platinum. They're still relatively cheap at under $200. And the OP can branch out. "Invested" Apple enthusiasts almost always get more than one machine.



#29 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:14 PM

I'll keep this in mind. Would an Amiga 1200 monitor work an Apple II? I already own one of those.

For a monitor, you should keep an eye out for one of the pro grade monitors. 

 

http://www.tested.co...rt-retro-games/

 

I'll have to take some photos of what Apple video looks like one of these days.  Unlike most, if not all, other computers of this era, the Apple 8 bit computers used artifact color.  On consumer grade gear, this ends up looking very distinctive, but it can be difficult to read text and or enjoy color graphics on the same screen.  Many people got two screens, one monochrome, one color or a TV to get it all done in a useful way.  These PVM devices can do both!

 

On a side note, the article I linked shows the good and bad of such a great display.  Most things will be pixel perfect, even on a composite signal output.  I like the look, because I like to see the pixels, but for some the lack of smudge sort of degrades the experience.  But, the Apple 2 color also has a texture to it, because of the artifacting, that really adds to the overall experience.  This texture is best seen on a display with high bandwidth. 

 

These monitors have great circuits that can pick out the image from the messy composite signal.  They also have computer grade CRT masks.  The color dots are much smaller, which prevents fringing and blurry text.  80 column text is easy to read, and the monitor can be adjusted for bright color without too much fringing on text, best of both worlds when playing RPG games, for example.

 

Many models feature RGB inputs, which can work with a GS directly.  Mine is flat out awesome.  The GS on composite is dubious on most displays. These PVM displays actually make composite on a GS   usable.  But, the RGB is pixel perfect, not much different, if not better than the original monitor.   In short, any 80 column capable computer from this time period will rock hard on one of these displays, and you get the niceness of a CRT, probably the best CRTs available, for a song these days.

 

I've used mine with a few different systems, Apple, Atari CoCo 3, and it's nice. 

 

If you watch, these can be scored for a couple hundred bucks.  Worth it.



#30 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:17 PM

I have that kind of nostalgia too. I have no reason to have the Atari 400/800xl/XEGS other than the fact they are 'cool'.

 

I often go back and forth, round and round between the II+, the Enhanced //e, and Platinum //e as being my favs. The II+ and E//e are in there because I had them as I was growing up. Great memories of BBS programming and beginning my electronic journal (which I continue to this day). I learned so much about computer concepts, disks, and digital electronics on the II+. And I learned so much about added and refined features on the //e, as well as using a GUI. I had loads of fun exploring the depths and fine points of 80 columns and an additional 64k of bankswitched memory. Currently the 64K/80column card ranks in my top-ten of best computer upgrades ever. MouseText and lowercase + extra symbols was a real hoot.

 

Today I enjoy most all of that through nostalgia and fading memories and the P//e. I also appreciate its lower power consumption and even-smaller-chipcount over the E//e. I also like the crisp hollow feel of the keyboard and the final upgraded firmware.

 

I also enjoyed instant access to all kinds of languages, Fortran, Pascal, Integer Basic, Applesoft Basic, Machine Language and Assembly, mini-Assembler, Pilot, Logo, and a million versions of DOS and spinoffs. The II series accepted all of that as if it were all built-in. Not that I fully new what to do with everything!

 

Playing with those DOSes was like magic because of the unique extra commands some had. They made you feel as if you were really expanding you system, for real. Giving it new capabilities.

 

So yeh, lots of nostalgia and good times.



#31 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:35 PM

I have a theory that for senior citizens and people afraid to use computers something like an Apple II is a great way for them to experience computers. A modern OS is a complicated piece of software with lots of icons to click on and multiple ways to do anything. It's basically a huge open world with dragons, unicorns, and wizards. With old computers, for the most part you can only do one thing at a time and you can read, follow, and memorize the step by step instructions that do the same thing every time. It's a yellow brick oz road you can follow without getting lost. 

You know, I learned a ton the same way. An Apple was, and I would argue, still is a great introduction to what computing is.

The CFFA makes it for me. I can actually write, create graphics, and get both into modern environments super easy.



#32 thorr OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 3:46 PM

I now have a IIc and I love it.  Growing up, I had a Laser 128EX with an RGB monitor and the colors were wrong on it (things that were supposed to be blue were gray) due to the color numbering being different.  This made playing games like King's Quest annoying.  My friend had a IIc and I loved his better even though on mine I had a 1MB RAM disk and an accelerator.  Also the open and closed apple symbols were triangles on the Laser 128EX and that bugged me too.

 

With the IIc, you can get a Floppy Emu which works just as well for me as what a CFFA might do on a IIe.  https://www.bigmesso...com/floppy-emu/ It also works with my MAC LC III.  I also purchased the floppy switch device from his website and that allows me to easily switch between the internal drive on the IIc and the Floppy Emu.  I don't feel like I am missing anything that I want with my setup.

 

I also have a Mac LC III with a IIe card in it, but I much prefer my IIc for that authentic look and feel.  The graphics on the LC III are beautiful, but they are more pixel perfect rather than the much nicer IMO blended look on the IIc.  For this reason I have no interest in getting a VGA adapter for the IIc. 

 

There is also a RAM card and with a clock on it available, so this takes away that advantage from the IIGS when saving files.  I don't have this, but I might want it someday.  With my Floppy Emu, it also emulates 3.5 inch disks and hard drives, so I don't really need the extra ram.  I would just use it as a RAM disk so I could store more files without having to change floppies.

 

And I love the keyboard on the IIc.  I retrobright'd my IIc and it looks almost new.  

 

Hope this helps.



#33 Iamgroot OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 3:58 PM

 

I think the LC2 is a bit too modern for my tastes. I have an Imac G3 Slot Loader and a Power Mac G4.. I got the Imac for $15 at a garage sale and the next weekend I got the Powermac G4 for $5 at a different yard sale. Both work. I figure  since I already have two late 1990's /  early 2000's Apple computers I want to get something from the 1980s. 

 

If you are running Mac OS 9.x.x on any of your Macs, you will want to get a hold of Bernie2theRescue.  There is a version 3 that is totally complete, is now free and is the best IIGS emulator, bar none.  I think they took down the main website, but there should be a version floating around.

 

It played all the demos perfectly, shows a 3200 color image perfectly (no other IIGS emulator does), mounts cd-roms, emulates the ensoniq music chip,  has the most compatibility with the most disk images, really nice interface for mounting disk images, etc, etc.



#34 thorr OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 5:10 PM

I wonder if it runs on a PC running a mac emulator.



#35 magnusfalkirk OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:58 PM

 

If you are running Mac OS 9.x.x on any of your Macs, you will want to get a hold of Bernie2theRescue.  There is a version 3 that is totally complete, is now free and is the best IIGS emulator, bar none.  I think they took down the main website, but there should be a version floating around.

 

It played all the demos perfectly, shows a 3200 color image perfectly (no other IIGS emulator does), mounts cd-roms, emulates the ensoniq music chip,  has the most compatibility with the most disk images, really nice interface for mounting disk images, etc, etc.

As far as I'm concerned Sweet 16, by Sheppy, is the best GA emulator. You can download it from here: http://www.sheppywar...re-mac/sweet16/it's freeware and Sheppy is always updating it, unlike Bernie2TheRescue, which hasn't been updated in quite a while.

 

magnus



#36 wood_jl OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:08 PM

I have to admit that I don't know a hill of beans about Apple II computers, but for me, it was the IIe (Enhanced) that I settled for.

 

The Apple II (not even sure if it was a Plus) was the first personal computer I ever touched (elementary school), so it has a bit of an attachment for me.  However, they seem like expensive collector's items now.  It also bugged me that they didn't have lower case characters, and seemed to top out at 48k.

 

The IIe looks enough like it to satisfy my nostalgia, plus it's later and presumably more reliable (fewer components) anyway.  I bought the nicest, latest one that I could find at a reasonable price.  It came in this box....

 

Attached File  Apple IIe 128K Box.jpg   353.86KB   0 downloads

 

....so I figured it must have been a later Enhanced model because it shipped with 128k.

 

The IIe Platinum looks too different for my nostalgia, although it looks like a really fine machine at the same time.

 

The IIgs just came too late to pique my interest.  By then, the Atari St and (to some extent) Amiga computers had my attention, and the lion's share of the 16-bit Home Computer software compared to what natively-supported the IIgs' unique capabilities.  Apple II software that captures my sense of nostalgia are the ones that I do most remembering playing on a IIe with a color monitor.

 

I always though that the IIc was an amazing design for its time, but there's that darned nostalgia again for the bigger II computers, and of course the IIc can't accomodate the CFFA3000 card, so that makes it a no-go for me.

 

The CFFA3000 is one bad-ass Apple II accessory:

 

 

 

Although I grew up with (and remain obsessed with) Atari 8-bit computers, a IIe with a CFFA3000, and a Commodore 64 with a 1541 Ultimate II have somehow managed to generate some 8-bit junkie interest in me.

 



#37 Iamgroot OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:19 PM

As far as I'm concerned Sweet 16, by Sheppy, is the best GA emulator. You can download it from here: http://www.sheppywar...re-mac/sweet16/it's freeware and Sheppy is always updating it, unlike Bernie2TheRescue, which hasn't been updated in quite a while.

 

magnus

 

That's because Bernie2theRescue was made so perfect there is no longer any need to update it.  :0)



#38 Iamgroot OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:29 PM

I wonder if it runs on a PC running a mac emulator.

 

If you are talking about Bernie2theRescue, probably not.  I had trouble running it under MacOSX in classic mode.  And one of the nice things about the older Mac G3 and some G4's, you could read 720k PC disks.  But what made it really slick is if you had a cd-writer attached, I would copy files to a virtual ramdisk on the Mac side and once it was full, use the Mac to copy the files to a cd.  Then you could mount cd's when running GSOS.  That was one of my favorite things to do until flash cards got my attention.



#39 Keatah OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:16 AM

The //c never does a whole lot for me in the nostalgia department. Though I wish I could mod it so it worked like the one in Explorers!

 

I also prefer the E//e for it's classic keyboard look over the P//e. Though I like the P//e for its even lesser chip count.

 

I literally grew up with the II series. From its initial release in 1977 all the way into the mid-90's. It was actually useful during those times either for gaming or for real work. Not to mention the many ways it fired off my imagination. The short stories we wrote often included the computer as a character or prop. And I have 0 regrets for any excess money I spent on the series. All the things I've learned from it have paid off in some form or another many times over.

 

What gives nostalgia and recollections of the good times a big boost are the original manuals, which I'm glad to have kept. All the cozy sleepovers during stormy & thundering evenings spent in my bedroom learning the commands and tossing around ideas about program concepts. Truly great times!
 



#40 wood_jl OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 11:35 AM

I'm quite inexperienced.  This book....

 

https://www.amazon.com/New-Apple-II-Users-Guide/dp/0615639879

 

....looks appropriate for modern-day Apple 2 newbies.



#41 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 7:46 PM

UPDATE: I just won an Ebay auction for a tested / working IIe in very nice shape. Comes with 2 floppy drives, monitor, and even a printer for $230 shipped. I'll swap in the enhanced chipset for $25 and then good to go. I plan to get the IIc in the future and maybe a GS if the price is right. For my next acquisition, however, I'd like to get a Macintosh Classic or something similar in the Mac Family since I can check the 'Apple II Family" box on my want list. :-) 

 

As a side note / interesting observation - I'm sure I probably could have gotten a much better deal even just a few years ago. Old video games and computers have become more in demand as collectibles as of late with people such as myself getting on the bandwagon thanks to Atari Age, Youtube, etc. I've always had an interest in old computers - especially ones I grew up with - but it has only been recently that I have been obtaining them. Thanks to websites such as Atari and Youtube people have become more interested in these relics. Personally, I started obtaining vintage computers because I'm curious and want to experience these machines I've always heard of but never owned or even experienced. There weren't many kids or adults back in the day who simultaneously owned a Vic-20, C64, Apple II, TI-99, Tandy Color Computer, PC, Atari 800xl, Amiga 1200, and Aquarius at the same time but over the course of the past 3-4 years I've obtained all these (the only yard sale find was the Amiga for 1200, otherwise it would be outside my price range). These days, even though these machines are collectible they still only cost a small fraction of their original price and ordinary middle class folks like myself can get them. The prices have been going up, but the communities supporting these machines has grown and they are more respected for their place in history.



#42 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:02 PM

Thanks for the info, your post was indeed very helpful. I actually just ended up getting a nice IIe on fleabay. I have to admit that my brain was telling me to get the IIe for expandability and flexibility, but my heart was telling me to get the IIc because I love the design. Now that I have the benefits of the IIe I'll keep an eye out for a fairly priced good condition IIc

I now have a IIc and I love it.  Growing up, I had a Laser 128EX with an RGB monitor and the colors were wrong on it (things that were supposed to be blue were gray) due to the color numbering being different.  This made playing games like King's Quest annoying.  My friend had a IIc and I loved his better even though on mine I had a 1MB RAM disk and an accelerator.  Also the open and closed apple symbols were triangles on the Laser 128EX and that bugged me too.

 

With the IIc, you can get a Floppy Emu which works just as well for me as what a CFFA might do on a IIe.  https://www.bigmesso...com/floppy-emu/ It also works with my MAC LC III.  I also purchased the floppy switch device from his website and that allows me to easily switch between the internal drive on the IIc and the Floppy Emu.  I don't feel like I am missing anything that I want with my setup.

 

I also have a Mac LC III with a IIe card in it, but I much prefer my IIc for that authentic look and feel.  The graphics on the LC III are beautiful, but they are more pixel perfect rather than the much nicer IMO blended look on the IIc.  For this reason I have no interest in getting a VGA adapter for the IIc. 

 

There is also a RAM card and with a clock on it available, so this takes away that advantage from the IIGS when saving files.  I don't have this, but I might want it someday.  With my Floppy Emu, it also emulates 3.5 inch disks and hard drives, so I don't really need the extra ram.  I would just use it as a RAM disk so I could store more files without having to change floppies.

 

And I love the keyboard on the IIc.  I retrobright'd my IIc and it looks almost new.  

 

Hope this helps.



#43 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:16 PM

AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

 

I'll have to check but I think my imac has 9.x. When I think about it it is kind of funny that I would be using an Apple computer to emulate another apple computer. Assuming there is a good Windows GS emulator it would be the same as using an 9.x on paper, but doing what you suggest will basically turn my Imac into a GS. If it works well and has close to the same functionality, I could save a lot of money by skipping the real thing and pretending my I-Mac is a real GS - THANKS!!!! 

 

If you are running Mac OS 9.x.x on any of your Macs, you will want to get a hold of Bernie2theRescue.  There is a version 3 that is totally complete, is now free and is the best IIGS emulator, bar none.  I think they took down the main website, but there should be a version floating around.

 

It played all the demos perfectly, shows a 3200 color image perfectly (no other IIGS emulator does), mounts cd-roms, emulates the ensoniq music chip,  has the most compatibility with the most disk images, really nice interface for mounting disk images, etc, etc.



#44 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:17 PM

Thanks, I'll check it out!

As far as I'm concerned Sweet 16, by Sheppy, is the best GA emulator. You can download it from here: http://www.sheppywar...re-mac/sweet16/it's freeware and Sheppy is always updating it, unlike Bernie2TheRescue, which hasn't been updated in quite a while.

 

magnus



#45 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:27 PM

I know exactly what you mean. I admittedly don't have nostalgia for any vintage Apple Computer model and can therefore base my decisions soley on capabilities and price. I do have nostalgia for the Tandy Color Computer II but not for the Color Computer III. The II happens to be much less expensive and more common than the III, so in my case nostalgia saved me a lot of money :-)

I have to admit that I don't know a hill of beans about Apple II computers, but for me, it was the IIe (Enhanced) that I settled for.

 

The Apple II (not even sure if it was a Plus) was the first personal computer I ever touched (elementary school), so it has a bit of an attachment for me.  However, they seem like expensive collector's items now.  It also bugged me that they didn't have lower case characters, and seemed to top out at 48k.

 

The IIe looks enough like it to satisfy my nostalgia, plus it's later and presumably more reliable (fewer components) anyway.  I bought the nicest, latest one that I could find at a reasonable price.  It came in this box....

 

attachicon.gifApple IIe 128K Box.jpg

 

....so I figured it must have been a later Enhanced model because it shipped with 128k.

 

The IIe Platinum looks too different for my nostalgia, although it looks like a really fine machine at the same time.

 

The IIgs just came too late to pique my interest.  By then, the Atari St and (to some extent) Amiga computers had my attention, and the lion's share of the 16-bit Home Computer software compared to what natively-supported the IIgs' unique capabilities.  Apple II software that captures my sense of nostalgia are the ones that I do most remembering playing on a IIe with a color monitor.

 

I always though that the IIc was an amazing design for its time, but there's that darned nostalgia again for the bigger II computers, and of course the IIc can't accomodate the CFFA3000 card, so that makes it a no-go for me.

 

The CFFA3000 is one bad-ass Apple II accessory:

 

 

 

Although I grew up with (and remain obsessed with) Atari 8-bit computers, a IIe with a CFFA3000, and a Commodore 64 with a 1541 Ultimate II have somehow managed to generate some 8-bit junkie interest in me.

 



#46 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:36 PM

I'll have to get a copy of this book at some point. What I really like about it is that it is a modern book (2012) that documents and provides instruction a computer that hasn't been made for about 25 years. This is the first time I have ever seen anything like it.

I'm quite inexperienced.  This book....

 

https://www.amazon.com/New-Apple-II-Users-Guide/dp/0615639879

 

....looks appropriate for modern-day Apple 2 newbies.



#47 Major_Tom_coming_home OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:47 PM

Using the same family of computers for that long must have been a great experience. On paper that's comparable to me using PCs from 1994 to present day, but the Wintel platform is so ubiquitous and de-facto computer platform that is kind of like saying "I've used electric stoves since 1994". 

 

 

The //c never does a whole lot for me in the nostalgia department. Though I wish I could mod it so it worked like the one in Explorers!

 

I also prefer the E//e for it's classic keyboard look over the P//e. Though I like the P//e for its even lesser chip count.

 

I literally grew up with the II series. From its initial release in 1977 all the way into the mid-90's. It was actually useful during those times either for gaming or for real work. Not to mention the many ways it fired off my imagination. The short stories we wrote often included the computer as a character or prop. And I have 0 regrets for any excess money I spent on the series. All the things I've learned from it have paid off in some form or another many times over.

 

What gives nostalgia and recollections of the good times a big boost are the original manuals, which I'm glad to have kept. All the cozy sleepovers during stormy & thundering evenings spent in my bedroom learning the commands and tossing around ideas about program concepts. Truly great times!
 



#48 Keatah OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 9:08 PM

I didn't use the Apple II exclusively. It sat beside an Amiga for a while. And then the PC. As software emulators for the PC picked up momentum I slowly and gradually retired the II. But make no mistake, it's still fun to look at and occasionally take a spin around the block.

 

There was a time when I was full-on PC and nothing else. But I kept my Apple stuff "Because Apple" and for no other reason. Glad it worked out that way because I have a renewed appreciation for those early days.



#49 thorr OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:44 PM

 

If you are talking about Bernie2theRescue, probably not.  I had trouble running it under MacOSX in classic mode.  And one of the nice things about the older Mac G3 and some G4's, you could read 720k PC disks.  But what made it really slick is if you had a cd-writer attached, I would copy files to a virtual ramdisk on the Mac side and once it was full, use the Mac to copy the files to a cd.  Then you could mount cd's when running GSOS.  That was one of my favorite things to do until flash cards got my attention.

Yes, I meant Bernie2theRescue.  According to this site: http://www.emaculation.com there are quite a few Mac emulators out there that can emulate the various Mac's.  It would be interesting to try it on Sheepshaver or QEMU, and possibly others.  The CD trick sounds pretty cool.  I remember back in college running a C64 emulator for a Mac on Executor (a Mac emulator) on my 386 PC. It worked, but it was in black and white and much slower than a C64.  :-)



#50 thorr OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:47 PM

I'll have to get a copy of this book at some point. What I really like about it is that it is a modern book (2012) that documents and provides instruction a computer that hasn't been made for about 25 years. This is the first time I have ever seen anything like it.

Probably not a bad idea.  For me, programming the Apple was one of the best benefits of the computer.  It was easy to learn BASIC programming and I could make it do lots of cool things.  Now that I have my IIc, I want to eventually learn assembly.  I just need the free time it takes to learn it.





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