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Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:41 pm
by JazzyTech
Hello to everyone who has managed to survive our fascination of the Amiga for so many years :)

My Story:
If it weren't for a salesman in an electronic store suggesting I get an Amiga instead of a C64 in 1988, my life would have been much different. We became and remain friends to this day.
He was a great programmer on the C64 and his knowledge of computers was invaluable. Sadly I recently learned of his death and he will sorely missed.

Like most I enjoyed the amazing gaming abilities of the Amiga. After learning to code (enough to be dangerous :)) My interest shifted to 3D and virtual reality thanks to software such as Caligari, Reflections, Lightwave, and Cinema 4D. Our world is a dusty place and I found strange satisfaction rendering scenes of objects in a dust-free "perfect" environment. A 7MHz machine sometimes tooks weeks for just a single frame!
After a few years of this (and thousands of Deutschmarks later) I had a decent rendering machine that was capable of rendering complicated animations (usually around 20 seconds in length @ 25fps) in under a month. (060/PPC made that possible).
This was all just a hobby until a friend called me one day. He mentioned that he had overheard someone mentioning the need for 3D animations and the crazy costs involved and the lack of animators in general. This person was keen to meet me and see what I was doing. Turned out he needed an animator for commercials and TV broadcasts, but that was largely still the domain very expensive and specialized companies such as "Industrial Light and Magic" at the time.
Little did I know that was the beginning of an amazing career that enabled me to enjoy my love of computing and my somewhat OCD induced desire for perfect, dust free animations :)
Also the satisfaction of watching other animator's jaw drop as I (ran circles) around their "professional" computers with an (at the time) obscure graphic station they'd never heard of. The real laugh was that I had my computer in a electrical enclosure hanging on the wall behind my monitors. I had to modify the 3000s case to handle the 060/PPC board since it was originally only available for the A4000 and physically didn't fit. "Amiga 3000 TERRAmodified" emblazoned on a carved electrical label (Electricians will know what I mean I think). Ah.. good times...
Since everyone else at the company used primarily Macs at the time, they boggled at my machine whenever I needed to do something "Mac-like". I had a 68k Mac emulator running in the background and would switch back and forth between Amiga 3.1 and OS (6,7 or 8? can't remember anymore) whenever I needed it. (usually quick-copy operations from HDs or Jaz drives, etc.) Such a versatile and useful machine.
My A3000 served me well even after I was forced to upgrade to SGI due to software requirements (Maya) and hardware rendering speed. I used it to render shorter less complicated animations until 2001.

I currently own 3 A500s with different Rock Lobster versions and hardware addons, one A2000, and two A3000s. (will update the specs as they come to mind!)

A500 - 1MB Zorro Eprom board (eprom board purchased from Conrad Elektronik). Waaay faster then my A590 50mb Quantum Fireball HD with all the frequently used software immediately available.
A500- 50 MB HD (Quantum Fireball)
A500- stock "Action Replay" card
A2000 - stock
A3000/25 stock (scsi chip needs replacement)
A3000/25 - 060/PPC Cyberstorm - Picasso II RTG

Various computer monitors (a few Sony Trinitrons, NEC Multi-sync 3FG and 6FG, etc)
SCSI peripherals such as the Sony SDT 5000 DAT streaming tape drive (4-16GB capacity) HP SCSI scanner, etc.

All were purchased while living in Europe (I'm now in California).
They all worked when I returned to the US in 2001. Due to lack of space they are currently in storage (since 2001) but I plan on getting them out at some point in the near future. Based on what I've read in the forums, I think I may have my work cut out for me (batt replacement, 220/50 VAC vs 120/60 VAC etc.)

I look forward to reading/interacting with you in the forums :)

EDIT: After spending some time reading the various threads I find myself excited about getting my hardware "back on the road". So many topics and all about Amiga.. It's sort of a virtual Nirvana in a way. Not much gets me excited anymore. This is getting me excited again :)
Since I'm not typically one to comment so much on, well anything on the Net, it is my sincere hope that I don't dilute the threads too much; I'm excited and desire to engage and share my "two cents" :)

Re: Greetings!

Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2020 2:19 pm
by intric8
Oh man I sincerely hope your A3000's are OK.

Welcome to the site, and I look forward to seeing you pull your Amigas out of storage and back into the light. Cheers!

Re: Greetings!

Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2020 3:53 pm
by fxgogo
Yeah run man run. We all can't live with another tale of regret and a destroyed Amiga ;)

Re: Greetings!

Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2020 4:41 pm
by JazzyTech
I'm not too worried about the 060/PPC A3000, since I modded the battery housing long ago. Not sure about the stock one since a friend gave it too me right before I moved. It happens to be stored up-side-down so I'm hoping that if the battery did leak I'll be dealing with a cosmetic problem instead of an electronic one....
I am wondering how to address the timing issue with my 060 Amiga. I had already replaced the original power supply with a generic PC one (somehow redirecting the "tick" timing signal from the original Amiga power supply to read it internally).. but it's been many years... Since the whole system assumes 50hz AC, I'll have to *really* investigate this before attempting to power on this machine. At least I'll get some use(?) from one of these old 500Watt PSUs I have laying around :D
I doubt I'll be able to use any of my monitors since they are all 220v/50hz, unless someone knows of an AC adapter capable of many many watts of power which transforms 60hz to 50hz (lmao).

Re: Greetings!

Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2020 6:15 pm
by obitus1990
Regarding the TICK signal, if you use one of Ian Stedmann's ATX to Amiga "Bigbox" adapters, it will generate the TICK signal for you. So, you'd use the 110V USA ATX PSU, Stedmann adapter, and the A3000. The adapter has a dip switch that lets you select the TICK signal frequency you want it to generate.

See here for more info

Re: Greetings!

Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2020 11:40 pm
by JazzyTech
obitus1990 wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 6:15 pm
Regarding the TICK signal, if you use one of Ian Stedmann's ATX to Amiga "Bigbox" adapters, it will generate the TICK signal for you. So, you'd use the 110V USA ATX PSU, Stedmann adapter, and the A3000. The adapter has a dip switch that lets you select the TICK signal frequency you want it to generate.

See here for more info
Thanks very much for that link! Bookmarked! :)