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doctor_x

Wanted: Someone to do Lotharek Mods to my XEGS.

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Just as the title says - I have an XEGS that I would like to use as a platform for Lotharek mods since it has a case with lots of room and also the external keyboard (which I've lengthened the cable for...).. I am not handy with a soldering iron AT ALL, so I don't want to butcher my XEGS.. Obviously I would be willing to pay a reasonable amount for the work.

 

Anyone? Beuhler? Beuhler? :)

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If you can ship the u.k flashjazzcat does excellent work for the atari 8 bits dunno how much work he has on

Then again you might be better off with some one local?

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Just curious ...which mods are you looking to have installed?

 

Ultimate 1meg, VBXE, sio2sd (internal if possible). possibly stereo pokey - but that isnt really a "have to have" thing.

 

I dont think there are any compatibility issues with the items I mentioned above from what I've read - but if there is please feel free to correct me.

 

FJC firmware of course.. :)

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I would install stereo pokey.

In my "best of" collection 30 games supports it.

Hundreds of demos and tunes use it too.

You'll not regret it.

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I would install stereo pokey.

In my "best of" collection 30 games supports it.

Hundreds of demos and tunes use it too.

You'll not regret it.

 

I am more about utilities than I am games and never got into the chiptune scene - however its a pretty cheap mod, and unless I do an eclaire or the other 'new" atari project, then this will probably be my last atari (would be no reason for it not to be i guess) - so I guess if I'm doing the other stuff I should!!! Thanks for the prod. :)

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man.. i just watched the side2/u1mb video on lothareks website.... looks like i better get a side2 as well...

 

i gotta say this - the atari is SO much easier to work with than a c64 either back in the day or with mods.... looking around for info on side3 to see if i should wait for it....

 

One other question.. lets say I do all of these mods and then my XEGS croaks... is it easy to remove the mods and then install them in another machine? (same type machine..)

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Yea the VBXE looks kinda hairy doesnt it....

 

I may just see if I can just send my XEGS to lotharek and have him do the installs.. lol..

 

I will keep you in mind for anything other than the VBXE as the others look quite a bit easier...

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It's all pretty easy to do but I didn't realise that the board isn't socketed and I don't have the equipment to desolder the chips safely.

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I'm thinking about offering this kind of service, but I have problem pricing it, so it make sense for me and the customer. In this case installation of U1MB, VBXE and Stereo requires desoldering of two 40 pin chips, one 28 pin, one 20 pin and replacing them with sockets. Then the case will need to be modified for audio and video outputs. Internal sio2sd also take some work to make it look neat. Then you have to get some additional parts for the case mod.

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Don't go too low, since the novelty of repeatedly being asked to do this stuff rapidly wears off. If you're repairing a dead machine, it makes sense not to charge more than the cost of a replacement machine on eBay. But when it comes to upgrades, you're offering a highly specialised service, and you can add a great deal of value (even beyond the installation service offered by the equipment vendor) by doing a good job of mounting daughterboards on pylons, using push-fit Dupont connectors throughout, etc.

 

When installing VBXE as well as stereo POKEY, I strongly suggest using a DIN13 connector for the RGB video jack (installed in place of the RF modulator), following the 1088XEL DIN13 pinout. The DIN13 has sufficient pins to bring out the stereo audio without any further connectors being required on the back of the case, and you can manufacture whatever breakout cables the customer requires.

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Lotharek's install prices actually seem quite reasonable to me. The issue for those of us in the states is the shipping cost. (although, you save some shipping becasue you do not have to have the items you are buying shipped separately, just one Atari shipped back...)

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Lotharek's install prices actually seem quite reasonable to me.

Lotharek lives in Poland where minimum wage is $3.60 per hour. Compare it to were you live.

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In Ohio thats $8.55 an hour so just a little over double

Federal minimum wage (what you'd use for customers nationally) is $7.25 so almost exactly double

In Chicago it's $12; 3½ times the Poland rate

 

 

 

I can't say any more without it becoming a political rant so I'll leave it at that.

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If the US federal minimum wage had kept up with inflation, it would be on the order of $40K per year right now. Not sure what that’s got to do with anything in this thread, however.

 

* * * *

If I was doing the work, especially with the risk of damaging traces on crappy XE boards, I’d ask at least $50/hour for the work on someone’s machine, with a minimum of 2 hours and billed in 1/2 increments after that. I’ve got the tools to do that kind of work, but those tools weren’t free. They have tips that need periodic replacement every few years, filters that are consumables (and not particularly cheap!), solder, flux, wick, bodge wires if necessary ... plus all the time, effort and risk of damaging a customer’s machine and having to either expend a lot more effort to fix a screw up or replace the machine or damaged chip.

 

Eh, no thanks. I’ll fix my own machines or help a friend with one of theirs. I’ve been contacted recently about helping an acquaintance with a difficult 800XL. Unfortunately, once he sent me pics, the damage he did trying to remove the OS ROM wasn’t pretty. At least one trace complete destroyed and at least two more pads gone from other through holes. I suggested the things he could do on his own end to fix his mistakes but he may contact me again if he can’t get it sorted out. Frankly I’m not looking forward to that conversation. :)

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When you offer to install your own products as an incentive to selling said products (on which you already make a profit), you can afford to install cheaply.

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I prefer proven track record over price (within reason), If I was going to install an Ultimate 1MB I'd probably ask FJC to do it as even though I know what I'm doing, its too easy to make a simple costly mistake, where a proven installer would be fluent and sure of their work..

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