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Is some TI legacy hardware becoming redundant?


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#1 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 5:30 PM

Are some legacy TI hardware devices becoming redundant?

 

For those planning on getting the P-Box version of the TIPI when it comes out, do you think you'll ever use your RS-232 cards or HDX's ever again?  I'm not sure I'll ever use my UDS-10 or either of my RS-232 cards ever again.  I might just pull them out of the box to lessen the load on the aging powersupply and to eliminate extra cords in "the rats nest".

 

Since the TIPI, and Lotharek type SD devices arrived on the scene, how many of you still use your legacy disk drives?

I have an external 3.5 drive that I've not used in at least two years.  I'm not sure I ever will again. 

 

I know cartridges will fair better since some people collect them, but with FInalGROMS's and UberGROMS, a lot of legacy cartridges just take up space, collecting dust.

 

Do you any of you guys have the same problem, feeling like you're being buried under a mass of unused hardware?  I was so happy to acquire each and every one of these items a few short years ago, but a lot of the new tech is so much smaller and does so much more.

 

For those with specialty hardware, P-Boxes are still necessary, I know I'll never get rid of mine, but I wonder if in some cases, for people with room, will the P-Box just become a fancy retro case for the TIPI?

 

I'm really interested in your comments, insights and opinions.  It seems we are at a turning point in the hobby for non purists, and I'm not sure what's going to happen.



#2 InsaneMultitasker OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 6:16 PM

By similar logic a PC can do already do everything the TI can do, and more.  Doesn't mean I will get rid of the TI.  

 

Same goes for my other peripherals and so-called legacy cards and devices. I see the TIPI as an additional peripheral and tool to augment my system.  For some, this will represent a turning point; for others, it will be one more peripheral to play with.



#3 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 7:09 PM

No.



#4 marc.hull OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 7:57 PM

At the risk of getting into even more Atariage trouble.....

You said the same thing about the Nanopeb/CF7. When you used it and saw it had it's issues you then touted the traditional PEB set up as the greatest thing. When the HDX came on the scene you were all in on it and other methods were obsolete and now you are ready flush it.
It seems only a matter of time until you reverse course with TIPI when the next thing comes on the scene. It's like you have no identity and simply blow along in the next wind. All TI gear is good and your constant championing of the latest thing at the expense of everything else prior (most of which you have no apparent experience or knowlege of) is becoming a regular and ,for me, tiring event.

#5 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 8:36 PM

Are some legacy TI hardware devices becoming redundant?

 

For those planning on getting the P-Box version of the TIPI when it comes out, do you think you'll ever use your RS-232 cards or HDX's ever again?  I'm not sure I'll ever use my UDS-10 or either of my RS-232 cards ever again.  I might just pull them out of the box to lessen the load on the aging powersupply and to eliminate extra cords in "the rats nest".

 

Since the TIPI, and Lotharek type SD devices arrived on the scene, how many of you still use your legacy disk drives?

I have an external 3.5 drive that I've not used in at least two years.  I'm not sure I ever will again. 

 

I know cartridges will fair better since some people collect them, but with FInalGROMS's and UberGROMS, a lot of legacy cartridges just take up space, collecting dust.

 

Do you any of you guys have the same problem, feeling like you're being buried under a mass of unused hardware?  I was so happy to acquire each and every one of these items a few short years ago, but a lot of the new tech is so much smaller and does so much more.

 

For those with specialty hardware, P-Boxes are still necessary, I know I'll never get rid of mine, but I wonder if in some cases, for people with room, will the P-Box just become a fancy retro case for the TIPI?

 

I'm really interested in your comments, insights and opinions.  It seems we are at a turning point in the hobby for non purists, and I'm not sure what's going to happen.

 

 

At the risk of getting into even more Atariage trouble.....

You said the same thing about the Nanopeb/CF7. When you used it and saw it had it's issues you then touted the traditional PEB set up as the greatest thing. When the HDX came on the scene you were all in on it and other methods were obsolete and now you are ready flush it.
It seems only a matter of time until you reverse course with TIPI when the next thing comes on the scene. It's like you have no identity and simply blow along in the next wind. All TI gear is good and your constant championing of the latest thing at the expense of everything else prior (most of which you have no apparent experience or knowlege of) is becoming a regular and ,for me, tiring event.

 

No, I asked for comments, insights and opinions, so no problem from me, as long as it does not degrade into an opening to exploit for further personal attacks.

 

True, you're right, I do have issues with the Nano-PEB and have strong opinions on it.  I'm still a great believer in the P-Box as I believe it gives one the most diverse capabilities and expansion options.  For me personally, I do question the continued need for the RS-232 and HDX in my case as the TIPI will perform every function I used the HDX for.  It may seem like, "I'm ready to flush it", that's rather harsh, but again, I question the need for so much redundancy.  AT THE TIME, they were all great, but time moves on and while they are still great devices, it's a duplication (for me).  

 

I'm sorry Marc, I'll be honest with you, I fail to see what "personal identity" has to do with liking new upgrade options.  Do people have "identity issues" when they buy a new car every four years? 

 

Yes, I will always encourage innovation and new stuff that does great things, and I will probably continue to do so until I lose all my marbles.  It's a segment of the hobby THAT I PERSONALLY ENJOY... and it excites me to see what people like Matt, Corey, Tursi, Rasmus, and so many other are doing.  I know some people like collecting, others prefer legacy and period gear.  Some people also like the minimalist approach.  The hobby is big enough for everyone, even people who like to maintain and restore their equipment without it being suggested that they have mental issues.  

 

I know where you stand, thank you for your opinion.


Edited by --- Ω ---, Tue May 29, 2018 8:45 PM.


#6 atrax27407 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 9:10 PM

In the final analysis, it becomes a matter of personal preference. Do you want gear that is legacy equipment. That is, original TI gear designed for the original TI system? Or, do you want a system that bears no real resemblance to a legacy TI system? Your choice!



#7 marc.hull OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 9:22 PM

I stand pat. Goodnight.

Narc.....

#8 Asmusr OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 10:13 PM

The FinalGROM and a 32K sidecar has pretty much replaced my PEB and my other cartridges.



#9 Schmitzi OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 10:21 PM

I think nothing will ever be obsolete for me. Not my TI stuff, nor my vintage PC stuff.

I am not interested in things because they are "better" than older things, or whatever.

I am interested in older things because they are old, and maybe slow and complicated.

The TI was my very first "car", so this is a main part of my identity ;)



#10 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue May 29, 2018 10:27 PM

To each his own. I have a bit of everything. You never know what test cases will require which hardware to troubleshoot.

Don't alienate previous hardware - Marc and Tim have great points above.

I love your enthusiasm for the 4A; however, please don't put down previous projects, because this community keeps building upon previous work. It's all building off of a foundation, and everyone adds according to their gifts and talents and continues to refine it. The foundational stuff is just as useful and important.





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#11 jonecool OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 12:47 AM

I got here late in the game, missed quite a bit of the recent innovations (if 30+ years is considered recent).  I didn't know about AtariAge until March, prior to that I just hung out watching ebay auctions for stuff where I picked up the nanoPEB/Pitfall cart, but that was about it until this year.  Both are amazing, to me btw.  I've spent more $ here on nanoPEB, FR99/FG99, TIPI, 32k, etc. than I ever spent on the original equipment.  I personally see that as a good thing for the community as a whole.  The $ that I and other's spend help keep the community moving forward, regardless of what we buy.

 

Using a device like the TIPI made sense and jumped once it was available.  I've been tinkering with RetroPieRPi's/Arduino's/Robotics devl. (hobby) for a little over a year and the TI-99/4A was my first computer, perfect combo! (for me)!  I do have a PEB (32k, RS-232, x2 half height drivers), nanoPEB and TIPI.  I keep the original equipment safe and stored and still fire it up now and then.  Even bought a new case for the nanoPEB last month.  While today I mostly exercise the TIPI/FG99  to run software that was harder to come by when I was 14--17.  It's still the same experience when I'm looking at the TI display and keyboard regardless of the hardware that's plugged into the right side of the console.  I'm happy and fortunate to own an interesting array of hardware and it's fun to learn about the things I've missed out on.  I still have a lot to learn and honestly, EA/Assembly programming is where I want to get -eventually.  But, I've only been back into the TI since late Feb. so I'm taking it slowly :)  Enjoying playing catch-up and learning about all the things I've missed over the years.  I've even made a few new friends here and enjoy the discussions.

 

I think Omega's comment about redundancy might have been taken out of context (JMO).  We don't know what devices will be available 3-5 years from now, but we do know what works for each of us today.  What each of us use may change depending on our likes/dislikes and some capabilities will surely become redundant if we consider new devices.  It doesn't mean anything is better/worse than the other.  What is truly amazing to me is all the options that are available!  Just enjoy what makes the most sense for you and gives you the most enjoyment.  That's what it's all about, at least that's my .02 worth.


Edited by jonecool, Wed May 30, 2018 1:05 AM.


#12 80s_Atari_Guy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 7:20 AM

Who has space for a Peb ?

I'll take my Nanopeb, every single time, over a Peb.

This also goes for other large original items like the Commodore 1541. I have 4, but I will happily take the modern equivalent (Ultimate II or sd2iec) + SDCard, over a 1541.

I would also swap a multi-hundred tape collection for a Tapuino, or TZXDuino. It's the convenience, not having to worry about degradation, and finding space for huge collections.

 

A bit like the comment from jonecool, I love all these modern hardware devices coming out, I often find these more exciting than the original hardware.



#13 AMenard OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 7:36 AM

Who has space for a Peb ?

I'll take my Nanopeb, every single time, over a Peb.

This also goes for other large original items like the Commodore 1541. I have 4, but I will happily take the modern equivalent (Ultimate II or sd2iec) + SDCard, over a 1541.

I would also swap a multi-hundred tape collection for a Tapuino, or TZXDuino. It's the convenience, not having to worry about degradation, and finding space for huge collections.

 

A bit like the comment from jonecool, I love all these modern hardware devices coming out, I often find these more exciting than the original hardware.

The PeB is a beast but it double as a monitor stand so in the end it doesn't take all that much extra space on the desk. The 1541, like the atari 850, stack on each other so you only lose the space of its width on the desk. The Apple 2e is also a beast but since the floppies and the monitor can be stacked on top of it it isn't all that bad.

 

These are computers, not game console. They were meant to be used with peripherals. Modern alternative are great (I use some), but for some of us, we're into retro computing for using the original hardware, not just playing games. If all I wanted was to play the games than I'd be using an emulator for the most part.



#14 atrax27407 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 7:51 AM

The only hardware that I will be replacing is that which is difficult, expensive, or impossible to find (ex. I will be replacing my Commodore 1084 with a VGA monitor from a currently unused system). 



#15 80s_Atari_Guy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 7:51 AM

I don't understand, if the modern equivalent does exactly the same thing, only smaller and more convenient, then why bother with the often cumbersome original ?

All this hardware needs space, so if you have it then great, but I live in a bungalow - I'm not old I just like the convenience and cheap rent - and space is premium. I already have nearly 14 CRTs, of various models and makes.

Also, this hardware will need (constant ?) maintaining, extra power cables and serial/data cables. The 1541 is slow, unless you have a jiffydos version, and the discs can rot or get mould. And often than not, the original hardware is getting expensive, compared to modern equivalents.

 

I appreciate your love of the original, although I don't understand why you would play the games on a emulator - especially since you have the original machine.



#16 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 8:08 AM

Why do we climb the mountain?

 

The nanoPEB and SD2IEC are both great but I rather like my floppies.  In particular since, in the case of the Commodore, I have to rely upon the availability of disk rips or cracks which may or may not, like in the case of Ballblazer, be the correct region.  I have been using my nanoPEB for ease of programming, opting for real media when the task is done.

 

At the same time I am converting formats.  All of my CDs are put away in favor of FLAC rips on my NAS, and while I have ripped all of my DVDs and BluRays I keep them out as the display is an at-a-glance reminder of what I have.  More than once just walking around the living room I have seen a movie out of the corner of my eye and said to myself, "Self, we should watch this."

 

As well, while I still very much enjoy real disks on my Amiga I am using WHDLoad to put as many as I can on hard drive, which itself is now an SSD or DoM, and some have gone full CF or SD for their primary storage.

 

By the way, do not get too stack-happy with the original 1541s. They will get really toasty sitting on top of each other.

 

The question of "redundancy" is not the same as "obsolescence."  Redundancy is about personal use preferences in terms of convenience, time, space consumption, etc.  My floppies and cartridges take up a comparably uncomfortable amount of space in my office, but I want and like having them around and even using them.  As for obsolescence, yes, some things have and might even be intended to obsolete the hardware they mimic, but even that could be subjective: the nanoPEB obsoletes the PEB if you no longer want or need to use PEB cards, etc.  I mean, really, have you guys had a look at my mobile phone?!



#17 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 8:25 AM

In the final analysis, it becomes a matter of personal preference. Do you want gear that is legacy equipment. That is, original TI gear designed for the original TI system? Or, do you want a system that bears no real resemblance to a legacy TI system? Your choice!

 

Actually, that's kinda why I'm building up two seperate systems.  I love the portability of the original TIPI design, but I'm rather attached and partial to my P-Box and am trying to keep it 'somewhat' original looking.

 

To each his own. I have a bit of everything. You never know what test cases will require which hardware to troubleshoot.

Don't alienate previous hardware - Marc and Tim have great points above.

I love your enthusiasm for the 4A; however, please don't put down previous projects, because this community keeps building upon previous work. It's all building off of a foundation, and everyone adds according to their gifts and talents and continues to refine it. The foundational stuff is just as useful and important.
 

 

Ouch, this hurts.  It was really not my intention to put any legacy hardware down in the original post.  I'm truly sorry it came off this way. I was inquiring for others opinions, but I guess I should explain where I'm coming from (only as it pertains to me).   I'll give an example; when I bought a SAMS card, it was not because I hated the 32K card, it was for the expectation of greater capabilities, supporting the community and the fact that I like new toys.  In doing so, the 32K card became redundant, so it now sits in a drawer... with no ill feelings towards it.

 

In my PC days, I went through CGA, EGA, VGA, SVGA, etc. all for the greater capabilities, each prior card became redundant and ended up in a drawer, eventually I felt buried in old cards that were no longer of any use (to me).  

 

I like my RS-232 cards, especially the HDX modded one and what it's done for me.  I've had a blast with it, but when I add the new card to my system, it'll take up a slot and along with it's extra capabilities, it'll duplicate the capabilities of some existing hardware.  To use both devices would require different copies of software doing essentially the same thing.  It's not being negative against any vintage hardware, it'll just the reality of adding some new features to my P-Box. 

 

 

I think Omega's comment about redundancy might have been taken out of context (JMO).  We don't know what devices will be available 3-5 years from now, but we do know what works for each of us today.  What each of us use may change depending on our likes/dislikes and some capabilities will surely become redundant if we consider new devices.  It doesn't mean anything is better/worse than the other.  What is truly amazing to me is all the options that are available!  Just enjoy what makes the most sense for you and gives you the most enjoyment.  That's what it's all about, at least that's my .02 worth.

 

Thank you, I don't feel totally misunderstood now, and on top of that, you phrased it way more eloquently than I.  :)

 

I've always loved that there are so many ways to expand the TI.  You can have 10 TI'ers in a room and easily have 15 opinions on ways to expand them.  Some of the guys here have multiple systems themselves, each expanded differently.



#18 digdugnate ONLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 8:27 AM

i see lots of differing opinions on this, so i'll stir the pot too.  :)  I think that the term 'redundant' may be what's throwing everything out-of-kilter.

 

Ultimately I think it's about personal preference, as OLD CS1 pointed out in the post above mine. 

 

I have a FG99, but honestly I prefer sometimes to boot up the 'real' cartridge- particularly things like EB or my MBX games.

 

I carved out a chunk of our bedroom for my TI stuff, and while the PEB is kinda bulky, I always wanted one.  :)   I have a NanoPEB but it's just not the *same* as turning on the Big Ol' Box, putting in a floppy and loading the software. 

 

By comparison, I have a tape deck and I hate that damn thing- It gathers dust on my desk, so I'm intrigued at a 'better' option like the TiPI for transferring files/etc.  I'd like to see a 'modern' alternative to the MBX!

 

As long as the old stuff works and can be repaired, I think there will be a significant number of folks in the hobby that prefer that, even with modern alternatives.  Are the modern alternatives cool?  Yes, they are way cool! 

 

This is just my .05 cents (adjusted for inflation), and your mileage may vary.  See dealer for details.



#19 AMenard OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 8:29 AM

 

 

By the way, do not get too stack-happy with the original 1541s. They will get really toasty sitting on top of each other.

 

 

Yes I know, this is why I've fitted dowels in the screw holes pn the bottom so that each stacked drive rest one inch above the one bellow as to help the airflow :-) 



#20 arcadeshopper OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 8:46 AM

giphy.gif

 

When archiving disks the HDX really is the best method, it copies them right to DSK files on the pc with dsk2pc

When accessing files locally the TIPI is going to wash out as the easiest/best/coolest etc.. but some will cling to their older setups.. TIPI really allows me to organize my files in a logical manner while the HDX really didn't do that.. it's lack of DSK emulation stopped me from spreading files out across the folders, since you can't open HDX.FOLDER.FOLDER.FOLDER.FOLDER.FILE  in a lot of TI programs (just not that much room in the input line) while TIPI lets me map DSK1. to that folder.. making it work easily. 

 

I never give anything up however, I completely don't understand that logic behind collecting hardware and then dumping it at the sign of the latest thing. I request you deliver any hardware you no longer want to my address if that's how you feel. I will give/find it a good home with someone that will appreciate it. 

 

Greg



#21 adamantyr OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 9:02 AM

My RS232 card has been redundant since the 90's. I just don't have any use for connectivity. I know a lot of other 99'ers do, though, which I suppose is where all the excitement with the TI-PI comes from.

 

The NanoPEB isn't perfect. I used one and the CF7 card reader for several years, but because it has no compatibility with SAMS, I sold it to someone who could use it. Also, it's not 100% compatible with everything; there's some flaw with the files system that I've repeatedly ran into with my work in bitmap mode.

 

I've replaced my floppy drives with a Gotek and Lotharek drive, and I've found them incredibly useful for doing all my work in emulation then porting it over to the hardware.

 

As for the PEB, I got nervous about not having a back-up unit, so I went and bought back one I had sold!

 

About the ONLY redundant hardware I'm buried in at the moment is monitors. I kept trying to get new ones on eBay as a potential replacement for my beloved Magnavox, and I finally just ended up getting another Magnavox of the same model. So now I got a few too many CRT monitors about. :)



#22 Casey ONLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 9:49 AM

I’ve mainly stuck with newer hardware rather than legacy stuff as a space saving measure. While I do appreciate the older hardware, and I’ve toyed with getting a PEB, I just haven’t wanted to invest the money and space into it when I don’t spend that much time playing with the TI. And given that 5 1/4” disks are rather hard to come by, I’ve not wanted to get invest in that either. The nanoPEB works well for me, and just in the last week I switched it out for the TIPI which makes it even easier to get files to the 99/4A.

At the same time, I definitely could be a purist.... If there was ever a beige style case made for the TIPI or Speech Synthesizer that I’ve been drooling over since I saw it on the back of the beige 99/4A box, I’d get one in a heartbeat just to make my system look more “real”. And I do have a beige TI program recorder (some things just need the cassette, even if you have a disk available).

Many years ago I had a fairly large collection of classic computers... 99/4, black/silver 99/4A, beige 99/4A, a 99/8, an Atari 600XL, Apple II+, Commodore 128, Amiga 500, all with a host of matching peripherals and I loved them all... All whittled down to just the 99/4A now with the very small, new devices we have today.

So I definitely appreciate the desires of some to keep their legacy hardware, and others to have the newest stuff. That’s what makes the hobby great - everyone can have it their way.

#23 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 11:59 AM

:D No offense intended here to anyone, but I don't get the "cycling through configurations." Sometimes I read these posts and feel like I'm reading the diary of Jerry Lundegaard.... always wanting the next thing, never content or happy.

We can celebrate new technology without throwing the baby out with the bath water.

I love my original console, my PBox, and I like running cables to and from my TI. I like my 56k modem and I like dialing in to the Hidden Reef over a phone line using Telco. I have a good-sized cartridge collection and probably 5,000 floppies. I love my gear... I will get a TIPI for my PBox when it is available , but I'll always maintain my original system because that's why I love retro computing. Otherwise, it just feels like emulation with a TI keyboard.

I know the TIPI is not emulation.... please understand that. But I will always love doing serial file transfers and I will always love recovering old floppies and cassettes. If my configuration ever doesn't include either a cassette deck or a floppy drive, it will cease to feel genuine to me. I may be in the minority, but that's okay. We can all do the hobby how we want to.

Improve what we have, YES!!! Make stuff more accessible, YES!!! But I just can't let go of my hardware, because that's what TI computing is for me.

That said, I think the TIPI is insanely cool.... I will have one for my PBox when it is available...

#24 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 12:41 PM

:D No offense intended here to anyone, but I don't get the "cycling through configurations." Sometimes I read these posts and feel like I'm reading the diary of Jerry Lundegaard.... always wanting the next thing, never content or happy.
 

 

No offense taken.  :)   I think most of us can acknowledge, have tolerance and acceptance for the realization that different people can want different things for different reasons.  We all have different likes and goals in our hobby.  For the most part, as a group here, we're not like the narrow minded political factions these days that are so judgemental that they feel compelled to attack others simply because they don't believe the same exact way.  If it were like that, I believe that would make this a boring hobby.  The more the merrier!  

 

Part of my current planning is to take into account future 'downsizing', so while I'm going to keep the old P-Box, fewer wires, and clutter, while maintaing the same level of functionality is a goal.  With my current configuration plans, this will eliminate six items and their associated plugs and cabling.



#25 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 30, 2018 12:54 PM

I have largely ignored the TIPI, perhaps to my detriment.  It sounds and looks not just cool but actually pretty revolutionary in the retro computing realm.  I find DSRs a particular wizardry and anyone who writes them on the verge of heresy.  I just cannot allocate the resources for another gadget, no matter how useful or neat right now.






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