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blainelocklair

TI-99/4A Reconditioned At The Factory Or By A Third Party?

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Hello everyone!

 

I bought a 4A this week from a local seller, whose brother previously collected TI hardware and software. On the bottom of the 4A is a white, round sticker that has the word "RECONDITIONED" on it. I'm hoping you might know if this is representative of having been reconditioned at TI or if some third party put it on there after doing some kind of work on it. I've attached photos of the location of the sticker, the sticker itself, and the serial number of the 4A.

 

Some research I did suggested that there were indeed 4As sent back to TI, which were refurbished and resold at a reduced price. Most of what I read suggested that they would have an "R" or "RC" in the model or serial number on the case to indicate they were refurbished at the factory. That's why I'm not clear about the sticker and its meaning.

 

Thanks for your time and help!

 

Blaine

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I have a former TI Lubbock Fab tech buddy whom used to refurbish the factory returned TI-99/4As. He also worked on the production line failures.

 

I'll send him your message and get a definitive answer.

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30 minutes ago, Airshack said:

I have a former TI Lubbock Fab tech buddy whom used to refurbish the factory returned TI-99/4As. He also worked on the production line failures.

 

I'll send him your message and get a definitive answer.

 

Awesome! Thank you.

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Brett says, “They sent them back to TI.  All of the computers sold to employees were reconditioned.”

 

To his knowledge ALL refurbs were done in Lubbock at TI. The refurbished units were sold at significant discounts to employees. 

 

That may be a former TI employees computer. Maybe a friend or relative of an employee?

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Note that it also has an "R" melted into the case right next to the sticker. Maybe the stickers were placed as a quick visual check item. The black on black "R" would be a bit less obvious--but very important once the sticker fell off or was removed by a customer. Refurbs I'd seen in the past had a circle about the size of the sticker with an "RC" in it, usually stamped on in a light-colored ink for contrast. Note also that the computers people received in return from TI Cares trouble calls were also Refurbs, so there are probably a lot of them out there.

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Yep, my old favorite console was a refurb.  It came to me through Radio Supply with a 32K 16-bit mod installed via a daughterboard.  I don't know how they obtained it for the mod.  It has both the sticker and an "R" burned into the plastic bottom right by one of the feet.

 

 

Refurbed TI994A.jpg

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Well, darn! It sure does have an "R" stamped in the bottom case next to the sticker. Two things got me. First one was misinterpreting that the "R" was part of the serial number instead of just being stamped anywhere on the bottom case. The other is getting older and not seeing as well anymore. It didn't even jump out at me when the flash hit it in the picture, but having tunnel vision about something can certainly do that!

 

I think it was Betty Davis that quipped, "Getting old ain't for sissies" or something to that effect. She was right, but I also find the alternative to growing older to be so unpleasant. :)

 

Thanks to everyone for helping me figure this out! Very much appreciated.

 

- Blaine

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Posted (edited)

Bit late, but I can verify TI marked other refurbished devices that way. My old Speak&Spell has the same sticker and branded R.  Don't have  a refurb 4a, though.

Edited by JB
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Speaking of reconditioned, I took apart a reconditioned unit that was turning on to a white screen this past weekend. We checked the power, and were getting a solid plus and minus five and plus 12. Unseated and reseated the 9918A.

There wasn’t a sound chip power up or such - no noise and no “shutting up” nor beep.

The power supply transformer and cable worked fine on another TI, so we ruled them out.



Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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16 hours ago, JB said:

Bit late, but I can verify TI marked other refurbished devices that way. My old Speak&Spell has the same sticker and branded R.  Don't have  a refurb 4a, though.

 

Speak & Spell! Never even occurred to me to look at mine. It's not original to me, but I found it years ago at a yard sale for like a quarter or so.

 

No sticker and no "R" on my Speak & Spell though. At least no "R" that I can see. Of course, we all know what means from the above. :) 

 

Perhaps one day it would be interesting to know how many TI Cares refurbs are still out there...

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