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RCA Studio II GOLD MINE! An interview with the Studio 2 Production Manager!

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Nicely done. I really enjoyed the video. Another classic tale of 'could've, should've, would've'. Makes me wonder what would have happened had this come out a year or two prior.

Posting up my new Atari Archive video because it has direct connections to this thread: an investigation into the history of the RCA Studio II, from the FRED days through the arcade machines, the Studio III and IV, the Cosmac Elf and VIP, and on to NASA space probes. It's a combination of information from this thread, info from the TCNJ and Hagley archives, and interviews with Joyce Weisbecker, Bob Winder, Jef Winsor, CT Wu, Fauxscot, and Andy Modla. I hope it serves as a good summary of events as we know them up to now!

 

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You did excellent work with the update, Marcel - he converted a large majority of the data tapes at TCNJ and Hagley to binaries and rebuilt those pseudocodes; all I did was grab the scans of the old documents to assist with the FRED and Studio IV emulators :) I do recommend everyone go and fiddle with the FRED games, as some of them are pretty cool! And hey, if anyone wants to try and make a little demo game for Studio IV...

 

Also of note: Marcel found the ntsc studio iii rom with some of those SIII tapes, which is also included.

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My wife informed me yesterday that she is pregnant with our first child. Neither of us have ever had a kid and we are going to need everything. So I am going to sell off whats left of my S2 collection and that includes my Demo Cart.

 

I am going to try to get it all broken down and listed this Sunday. If I don't make that deadline, then I'll keep everyone updated.

 

I will be auctioning everything starting at $0.99, with no BIN's and no offers. I want everyone to have a chance to purchase the few rare S2 items I have.

 

Also, I remember when the Multicarts were made and we were asked to not sell them on ebay. I don't want to upset anyone, so please contact me on how to go about getting it where it needs to go or if I need to auction it off as well.

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I would just offer the multicart to the first interested active member here at cost.

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My wife informed me yesterday that she is pregnant with our first child. Neither of us have ever had a kid and we are going to need everything. So I am going to sell off whats left of my S2 collection and that includes my Demo Cart.

 

I am going to try to get it all broken down and listed this Sunday. If I don't make that deadline, then I'll keep everyone updated.

 

I will be auctioning everything starting at $0.99, with no BIN's and no offers. I want everyone to have a chance to purchase the few rare S2 items I have.

 

Also, I remember when the Multicarts were made and we were asked to not sell them on ebay. I don't want to upset anyone, so please contact me on how to go about getting it where it needs to go or if I need to auction it off as well.

Thanks for the heads-up on this, and I'm sure you'll be getting some interest in these from us and others! Your boxed Demonstration Cartridge is the one that came out of DeWitt, Arkansas from a guy who got it at an estate sale from a former RCA dealer, right? Just for asset tracking purposes. We just hope that it goes to a real collector who'll appreciate it as much as you and the rest of us.

 

You also have a few box variants, or one of those yellow printed game boxes that doesn't seem to be due to sunfading?

 

If you have an earlier Serial system that'd be of interest, too.

 

As for the Multicart, yeah, what stupus suggested is great- there's still a few folks here who haven't gotten one yet. A quick thread in the Marketplace should get some attention.

 

Good luck with the sales! :)

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Also, I remember when the Multicarts were made and we were asked to not sell them on ebay. I don't want to upset anyone, so please contact me on how to go about getting it where it needs to go or if I need to auction it off as well.

 

Don't think that was ever a condition for the multicart... everyone can have the design, files and all but I asked that they would not be sold commercially. Wouldn't count selling off a single one in an auction as 'commercial'...

 

FliP

 

p.s. congrats on the baby - sad that you have to sell stuff, but i'm sure it'll be worth it!

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I asked that the boxes were not flipped on eBay as they are a lot of work to make and I wanted them in the hands of excited collectors.

And now schoolgirlinashortdress is bidding on the 1 you put on ebay.

If this is going to be where my work ends up I won't be making anymore rca boxes, items etc.

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No one showed interest on here after my post. So, will blocking schoolgirlinashortdress on ebay suffice?

 

If anyone is interested in the Multicart, please pm me.

Edited by gamerMac
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Thanks for the heads-up on this, and I'm sure you'll be getting some interest in these from us and others! Your boxed Demonstration Cartridge is the one that came out of DeWitt, Arkansas from a guy who got it at an estate sale from a former RCA dealer, right? Just for asset tracking purposes. We just hope that it goes to a real collector who'll appreciate it as much as you and the rest of us.

 

You also have a few box variants, or one of those yellow printed game boxes that doesn't seem to be due to sunfading?

 

If you have an earlier Serial system that'd be of interest, too.

 

As for the Multicart, yeah, what stupus suggested is great- there's still a few folks here who haven't gotten one yet. A quick thread in the Marketplace should get some attention.

 

Good luck with the sales! :)

Yes, from Dewitt, Arkansas.

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No one showed interest on here after my post. So, will blocking schoolgirlinashortdress on ebay suffice?

 

If anyone is interested in the Multicart, please pm me.

Yes, please try and sell it here.

And if you have to sell it on eBay for some reason please do block schoolgirl. Makes me feel sick having him buy it or re flip it. There are some other resellers too I hate to see buy it.

I know a few people were after a box so if you give it some time here someone should buy it when they see it. I don't even mind if you mark it up some. I just dont want to see it go for a crazy price on ebay just to be relisted by certain people for a more ridiculous price.

These were made with love and sold very cheap for what went into them to people who I considered big fans of the system.

Thanks

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Yes, please try and sell it here.

And if you have to sell it on eBay for some reason please do block schoolgirl. Makes me feel sick having him buy it or re flip it. There are some other resellers too I hate to see buy it.

I know a few people were after a box so if you give it some time here someone should buy it when they see it. I don't even mind if you mark it up some. I just dont want to see it go for a crazy price on ebay just to be relisted by certain people for a more ridiculous price.

These were made with love and sold very cheap for what went into them to people who I considered big fans of the system.

Thanks

I don't need to mark up the price, but I really don't remember what 'cost' was. $40 and shipping there and back and a spare boxed cart.

The game was also bought with love, so I intend on getting it to another that will feel the same way.

 

Was removed from ebay. Shortly after I got a pm on here and made the sale for Friday. Even though, right after I removed it from ebay, school_girl...offered $500.

 

You're welcome.

Edited by gamerMac
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Talked with Paul Russo pretty recently on his memories of working on FRED programs at RCA. He's supposed to be mailing me some items and review some of the scans I made from Hagley (haven't heard back yet, but he's a busy guy - runs his own company still), but from our chat he had some interesting insights:

 

Pretty shortly after RCA announced it was leaving the mainframe business, Joe Weisbecker brought up that he was working on a prototype home computer at home that could be used for games and applications, and that they could perhaps do something with that and microprocessors. Russo recalls Bob Winder going to bat with management to get it approved as an RCA project; they were told, he recalls, to keep it quiet since RCA had just left the computer division. He said its development into commercial products was pretty collaborative over the first couple years. He designed the hex keyboards so that people weren't stuck inputting code using the 8 switches on the prototype.

 

Russo also went over how the lightgun worked - it would look for a specific blinking frequency for the target. He considered that pretty sophisticated compared to the Odyssey lightgun.

 

Once they were able to convince the semiconductor division to move ahead and make the microprocessors they designed (ie the 1801, and later the 1802), he took up the job of coming up with commercial uses for it. This included using it for Chrysler cars' emissions control, telex format conversions between North America and Europe, and manufacturing.

 

With the Studio II, he remarked that the usual consumer division had no faith in it, believing that video games were just a fad and not worth pursuing. Instead the game console was picked up by the division that largely just handled parts for televisions and other equipment; Russo believed this hurt the system's availability and marketing. He put the blame on the system's failure on upper management in New York, saying that they're the ones who came through the labs and killed the Studio III color console project (citing the fad argument).

 

Similarly, he noted how shortsighted RCA upper management was when he had designed a proper DOS-based PC running an Intel chip a year before the first such PC made it to market - even noted that Bill Gates spent the day at RCA and had agreed to work with them re: DOS before management killed the project - in turn this is what spurred him to leave RCA for GE.

 

Some final tidbits: he has no idea why marketing picked the name Studio II, only that no one in the actual development lab had come up with the name. He also remembers the arcade machines and assembling the boards used in them by hand with Joe Weisbecker (who he said was a brilliant engineer).

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You should also block "happiestsellerever" or whatever the name is.

 

If you'll take the original cost for the item I'll buy it to keep it off Ebay.

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So the Demonstration currently up has already exceeded the price of the loose one from North Dakota, and there's still 2 days to go. This will be a fun one to watch the ending of!

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Over the years, I have only ever seen one brand new game other than the 4 that I have up for sale right now and they have almost no interest so far. I have seen multiple GF/MB's, SW/T's, and Biorhythm games over the years as well as 2 Bingo games and 3 Demo carts. Kinda funny I guess. The one of kind flyer has shown just a small amount of interest.

 

I got my multicart sold and shipped off to an A.A. member. It'll have a good new home.

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I got my multicart sold and shipped off to an A.A. member. It'll have a good new home.

 

Thanks for the sale gamerMac. The cart is perfect for my situation--downsizing my collection while still wanting to play now and then.

 

I'm especially excited about the homebrews! :)

 

When the time comes (hopefully no time soon), I'll make sure it ends up here to be passed likewise to the next Studio II enthusiast.

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Thanks for the sale gamerMac. The cart is perfect for my situation--downsizing my collection while still wanting to play now and then.

I'm especially excited about the homebrews! :)

When the time comes (hopefully no time soon), I'll make sure it ends up here to be passed likewise to the next Studio II enthusiast.

This makes me very happy to hear! ^^
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Shortly after I got a pm on here and made the sale for Friday. Even though, right after I removed it from ebay, school_girl...offered $500.

 

You're welcome.

Man what a weasel. Thank you for not selling it to him...so he offers for 1 what I charged for making all 30 of the demo cart boxes! And you know he immediately would put it up for $1500 :P

 

If he wins your demo or other stuff you better make sure you send the items registered/signed for! He loves chargebacks!!

 

Awesome that your multicart is going to the original bingo/demo cart guy too! That is some full circle goodness right there!! :)

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I was updating the owner registry for the 30 cib rca s2 multicarts and it seems I am unsure on the exact owner for 4 copies.

Likely the 2 copies by each other in the list could be flopped.

If these 4 owners could let me know the 1 they have it would be great! :)

The 4 with a ? Are those in question for order.

 

1. stupus

2. flip - free gift copy

3. Ed keefe - free gift copy

4. Blazing lazers

5. Anonymous ebay bingo buyer - free gift copy

6. Toymailman - traded for donor s2 shells

7. eebuckeye

8. Kyljoy

9. Krslam

10. Lazzeri

11. Spaceman

12. Atari2008

13. Mckafka99

14. Bassguitari

15. FABombjoy

16. Rhcocker

17. carlsson

18. rayik

19. y-bot

20. stupus

21. Ianoid

22. Swlovinist? - traded for actionmax multi disc

23. evg2000?

24. Atarinut

25. Kelseya

26. kyljoy

27. Tombstone

28. pcata?

29. gamermac? - now sold to 8_is_enuff

30. Vintagegamecrazy

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I was updating the owner registry for the 30 cib rca s2 multicarts and it seems I am unsure on the exact owner for 4 copies.

Likely the 2 copies by each other in the list could be flopped.

If these 4 owners could let me know the 1 they have it would be great! :)

The 4 with a ? Are those in question for order.

 

 

I had actually already mentioned this to 8_is_enuff. I forgot to look under the lid at the numbers before I shipped it. But I did ask him to let you guys know what they were when he received it.

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Man what a weasel. Thank you for not selling it to him...so he offers for 1 what I charged for making all 30 of the demo cart boxes! And you know he immediately would put it up for $1500 :P

 

If he wins your demo or other stuff you better make sure you send the items registered/signed for! He loves chargebacks!!

 

Awesome that your multicart is going to the original bingo/demo cart guy too! That is some full circle goodness right there!! :)

 

 

I thought it was pretty cool too. It's unfortunate that he is downsizing his collection, it's such a beautiful one.

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Thanks for the sale gamerMac. The cart is perfect for my situation--downsizing my collection while still wanting to play now and then.

 

I'm especially excited about the homebrews! :)

 

When the time comes (hopefully no time soon), I'll make sure it ends up here to be passed likewise to the next Studio II enthusiast.

 

I owe you the thanks. Thank you for giving it a new good home.

 

Makes me feel like I just gave away one of my pets. Haha

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I owe you the thanks. Thank you for giving it a new good home.

 

Makes me feel like I just gave away one of my pets. Haha

 

This is exactly how I feel about selling my original collection and shipping it to its new home. Its going to a well respected AA member.

 

I thought that I would dread sending off the pieces, but as the days have come and gone, I’ve felt really good about it.

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