User avatar
acolic

Posted Sun May 10, 2020 8:46 pm

Hi

I’m a former Amiga user getting back into the game with an Amiga 2000.

Busy surfing the internet figuring out what I should do to it.

Alex

User avatar
intric8
Seattle, WA, USA
Website

Posted Sun May 10, 2020 9:50 pm

Welcome, Alex! Thanks for joining the site.

Well, for starters, what have you got? What are the specs of your machine?

And what would you like to do?

The 2000 is a glorious machine. In my opinion, at its core, it is one of the most stable machines with the most potential ever made. The 500 is obviously right there, too, for millions, just with less slots to do this and that.

User avatar
McTrinsic

Posted Mon May 11, 2020 12:00 am

The A2000 is a wonderful machine to expand.
The main advantage of the A2000 over the A500 (and the A1000) is the expandability due to the "Buster" custom chip. This one is especially there in order to manage all the "Zorro Bus"-Expansion, the Amiga's equivalent (but better :D) to the ISA-bus of the PC.

Generally: having more than 1MB ChipRAM and a CPU of 68020+ will enable a great WHDLoad experience.

The only issue with the A2000 currently are the options to expand the core functionality: CPU/accelerator upgrades for the specific A2000 CPU-Slot. You can also use expansuions meant for the A500 that go in the 68k-processor-socket. there are quite a few new accelerators available, ranging from the "Vampire" to some impressive homebrew expansions.

If you can, you could get used expansions such as the 2030 boards for the CPU-slot. Although even 2060 board were made :).

An easy, recommended entry into the topic of "acceleration" would be this nice board:
http://www.amibay.com/showthread.php?10 ... r-by-Matze
An overview of commercially Turbo board is here, although they will only be available used:
http://amiga.resource.cx/dir/a2000proc

In order to attach a newer VGA monitor to your beloved Amiga, I can recommend this nice expansion "Indivision":
http://wiki.icomp.de/wiki/Indivision_ECS_V2

You could then later upgarde to a Graphics card ("RTG in Amiga-Land"), passing through the picture of the Indivision:
https://webstore.kryoflux.com/catalog/p ... ucts_id=56
The additional graphics are added via a driver.

For mass storage / IDE, you could either get an accelearator with built-in ports or get this new Buddha:
https://icomp.de/shop-icomp/de/shop/pro ... a-ide.html

Generally, I would highly recommend getting a 2-MB ChipRAM expansion such as these:
http://www.amibay.com/showthread.php?10 ... ct-Poland)
https://icomp.de/shop-icomp/de/shop/product/ace2.html

If you want Networking, here is a great option:
https://icomp.de/shop-icomp/de/shop/pro ... f-100.html

The XSurf has the great option to be expandable with USB:
https://icomp.de/shop-icomp/de/shop/pro ... d-usb.html


I guess that can keep you busy for some while :) .

Cheers,
McT

User avatar
acolic

Posted Mon May 11, 2020 3:43 pm

Hi,

This is what I know about my A2000:

Version 4.2
It has 5 megs of ram.
It came with a 3 ¼ and 5 ½ floppy.
It came with two hard drives. One attached to a Zorro card the other in a 3 ¼ slot.
It has workbench 1.3.
It has 1 meg chip ram.
It came with a 6020 board.
It came with 2 1042 monitors.
I think it came with the IBM AT Emulation board

I hooked it up to the monitor and it will start with a 1.3 disk in the drive but I can’t get it to boot or recognize either hard drive.

They had to be in the machine for a reason. Was there a trick to get it to boot from a hard drive?

What I want to do with it:
Hook it up to a modern LCD.
Speed it up.
Get it on the internet.
Use a modern mouse.
Update the GUI.
Modern storage: ide, flash, usb stick etc.
Relive my youth and play Monkey Island.

It came with a box of expansion cards perhaps you can guess what they are?
51B685CD-2911-4CDD-B9B2-F0767B9836B7.jpeg
4ADD30C7-D395-4DDA-9FF5-8CEBF497BCBD.jpeg
812D7E98-3CB4-4DFE-8BFC-175917DF387D.jpeg
052DF70B-6E9E-4CC3-B828-6CEA64B8EEB4.jpeg
1B226B6F-D268-4004-A149-81AADD1FB0F5.jpeg
5338E4E7-3B83-4930-BC52-902BAE49FFDB.jpeg
5AE907AB-9B7C-48B0-9B40-983290CE152C.jpeg

User avatar
intric8
Seattle, WA, USA
Website

Posted Mon May 11, 2020 4:42 pm

What a great find. Everyone here is going to have their own anecdotal personal opinions on this. Here are mine.
It has workbench 1.3.

Good to go! ;) No really, I'm serious.
It has 5 megs of ram.
In all reality, this is plenty for nearly everything on your list except 1 thing. (more on that later)
It came with a 3 ¼ and 5 ½ floppy.
Those 5.25 floppy drives are quite rare, and more a sign of the times. I've never had a need for one, but I have friends who will get them simply from a collection standpoint, or if there's an IBM PC bridgeboard installed (also rather rare) - which you have! It's an interesting thing.
It came with 2 1042 monitors.
1042?
It has 1 meg chip ram.
I'd upgrade to 2MB, but it's not really a huge requirement. More a nice to have and something I'd put low on the list of to-dos. It's not easy to get to under normal circumstances. You have to remove the entire hard drive caddy.
Hook it up to a modern LCD.
You can do this with a buffered video cable and an LCD monitor that supports Amiga modes. I have ... a couple. I prefer the RGB/CRT look most of the time, but LCDs are easier to replace (far cheaper, more plentiful) and use less power. But to each his or her own. I would recommend some LCD options but I can't remember if you said if you were in the USA or elsewhere.
Speed it up.

You won't need an accelerator to play Monkey Island. I have an A2000 with a GeForce 030 @40Mhz. It rocks. But if you want to play Monkey Island and other games like that, it won't offer that much to be completely honest. But I do love mine.
Use a modern mouse.
There are various adapters that allow for this. Depends on what flavor you want.
Get it on the internet.
For me, this is 100% the last thing I'd ever want to do with my Amigas. I will BBS with them nearly every night using a WiFi modem via the serial port, but the last thing I want to do is stick them on the 'net. Even a maxed out A4000 filled to the gills is going to offer a very shitty experience imo for the price. It will be slow, it will strip out nearly all of the interface, and a lot of sites simply won't work at all. And this is where you might actually benefit from gobs of RAM, a whacked out accelerator and more chip RAM. And will it make it amazing? Nope. You could hit this site with it, for example, but now that https is a requirement only 1 browser that I know of will work. You'll have to pay for it (even in 2020). And it'll still suck. To get a TCP/IP stack you would want to likely swap out your KS ROMs to 3.1 at a bare minimum. But just know you'll be sacrificing potential software compatibility to gain that glorious internet experience on your Amiga 2000.
Update the GUI.
Do you mean with MagicWB or icon packs? Or moving it from 1.3 to ... whatever? I could offer you some custom 1.3 icons to swap in. =)
Modern storage: ide, flash, usb stick etc.
From what I understand, you have 2 SCSI cards right now. Assuming those drives are dead yet the cards work, if it were me I would attach a (modern) SCSI2SD card in there and use SD micro memory. You could easily add a few gigabytes of hard drive space and not have to barely lift a finger. The larger the drive, the longer your machine will take to boot, btw. A lot of people here will add 4GB drives, or beyond. My current A3000 machine I'm building I put a 512mb sd card in there. It boots in 7 seconds, and half a GB of space feels ENORMOUS on these machines, to be honest. And you can always add more drives if you really need to. That's the beauty of the A2k/A3k in that there's tons of space to hide crap. Your machine's noise would dramatically drop, as would its power needs.

FWIW, I replaced all of my fans to quieter ones, too. My A2ks and A3ks are not silent like a C64, but they are very quiet.

I use the SCSI2SD cards in my 1.3 and 3.1 machines. You can move to IDE if you want to, but you don't have to unless you just really want to. SCSI is fast and stable and at your fingertips. If your Dataflyer has the RAM board option, all the better.

Lastly, if you want to use a USB stick with your A2000, you might consider removing the 5.25 drive and putting in a Gotek. But I'd keep your original 3.25 floppy drive, too, assuming it works. I totally understand the convenience of a USB stick to move files here and there. However, for the A2000 another very cool option is the Rapid Road with X-Surf. But that does require WB 2.0+ and RAM and a mild accelerator (not much). So, there's that thread on the sweater being pulled...
I hooked it up to the monitor and it will start with a 1.3 disk in the drive but I can’t get it to boot or recognize either hard drive.They had to be in the machine for a reason. Was there a trick to get it to boot from a hard drive?
This has the potential to be a rats nest. There are a lot of variables involved since you have two SCSI cards and 2 drives. Problem is, we've no idea which drive was the boot drive. Did you try to remove one drive, then boot? Then, try the other? When you turn the machine on, if no drives are detected at all that's when you'd put in your Workbench 1.3 disk. This can be a pain, but if you have HDinstTools on a floppy disk you can see if the machine detects the drives at all. You might have to go floppy first just to diagnose the situation. If neither drive is detected, well then that sucks. And that'll probably be the first major project you'll need to solve before doing anything else.

Technically you could play Monkey Island off floppies, but I doubt you'd want to do that with all that hardware on your desk.

That's my take!

User avatar
acolic

Posted Mon May 11, 2020 7:19 pm

Thanks for the help.

I’m in Canada.

I have gone a bit overboard and ordered:

1. Indivision
2. 3.1 Roms. Need to find a source for a OS 3.9 CD.
3. SCSI2SD V6 Rev. F

That should get me hooked up to a modern LCD, better user experience and storage.

I could not find a source for more chip ram.

Or a way to hook up a USB keyboard or mouse.

If I wanted to hook up a CD-ROM am I looking for an IDE one?

Thank

Alex

User avatar
intric8
Seattle, WA, USA
Website

Posted Mon May 11, 2020 7:37 pm

Ah - OK cool. I love Canada. One of my best friends is from there. We've gone up to Vancouver a few times and really like it up there. Anyway...

I personally have heard a few difficulties with the V6 model but I don't have any first-hand experience with that one. YMMV

Indivision: I have several friends who have it. From what I've heard, it can be challenging to set up. If you do succeed, it can be eye-poppingly good. Looking forward to hearing your experience.
I could not find a source for more chip ram.
You have to source an expansion board of some kind, like this one, and a different Agnus chip to fit into it.

There are USB adapters like this one. It kinda sticks out of your machine, so don't bonk it with your keyboard.
If I wanted to hook up a CD-ROM am I looking for an IDE one?
Not necessarily. You've got a built-in external SCSI port on the back of your machine. In fact I just picked up one of these scsi CD-Rom players last week myself. All I had to do was 1) get the proper SCSI cable and 2) ensure I've got some CD driver options. I also got a physical terminator for it. I'll be playing with it more in the coming weeks. Too many projects! :) I'm not complaining.
macCDplayer.jpg

Some people even use that lower bay for an internal CD drive. It's not like there is a ton of software on CD for these machines, but in theory you could run CDTV discs. What is cool is using the Fred Fish catalog on CD-ROM, too.

User avatar
McTrinsic

Posted Tue May 12, 2020 1:38 am

What a great find!

One thing to really follow: make sure you got NO battery leackage on the board.

Looks like you got two kinds of expansions in there.
Three MassStorage - expansions and a Bridgeboard.

The MassStorage expansions are the Dataflyer and the other Harddisk controller and the third with the HDD installed..

Before anything, wait until you get the SCSI2SD and make sure you make a backup of all the software :) .

The Dataflyer seems unnecessary.
The other "HardDisk Controller" is an SCSI controller with a WD33c93 chip - could be an Commodore A2090 or A2091.
It looks like a A2090a, see here:
http://amiga.resource.cx/search.pl?product=a2090#a2090a
You will also find the drivers there.
Unfortunately, I am not too well familiar with the A2090a. It can be equipped with autoboot ROMs. That would be awesome :) if yours was.
The A2090a is known to be a bit tricky to set up with standard ROMs.

The Bridgeboard seems to be this one, a Commodore A2088xt:
http://amiga.resource.cx/exp/a2088xt
The Controller with the Harddrive attached seems to be an ISA card.
That one provides a Harddisk for the PC on the bridgeboard, not for the Amiga!

In short for me:
- throw out the Dataflyer
- get at least AutobootROMS for the A2090a if you havent.
- use the ISA card for the bridgeboard, maybe replace the HDD on that one with a CF
- have fun with the Bridgeboard ;)

I personally would never again go without an accelerator on the Amiga.
Get one that can be switched off.
This one is a nice start:
http://amigaonthelake.com/wicher-500i-r ... escription

Cheers,
McT

User avatar
intric8
Seattle, WA, USA
Website

Posted Tue May 12, 2020 10:52 am

Here are two LCD monitors I can recommend.

1) NEC Multisync LCD1970NX
4:3 aspect ratio, 19". They can handle 15Khz and 31Khz. They made both a white and black version.

The one I have is black, and I got it about 1.5 years ago on Ebay for $40 - shipped! Mine had been used by accountants in a large office setting and I think they decided it was easier and cheaper to practically give them away on Ebay than deal with the disposal. This is a very versatile monitor. I got a brand new buffered RGB to VGA cable from a man on Amibay who goes by "a.mi.goun".

2) NEC Accusync LCD72VX
4:3 aspect ratio, 17". Only works in 15 mode, not 31.

Mine is white/off-white, which matches some amigas better, like the A3000, imo. This one cost me closer to $70 iirc. I rather like the smaller screen. Frankly, I like them even smaller than this. Everyone is different. :)

Oh, and looky what I found. Still available as I type this.

User avatar
dalek

Posted Tue May 12, 2020 8:57 pm

One thing to note - I have the NEC Multisync LCD1970NXp and it's great, however for PAL screens it cuts the bottom few lines of the screen off. Perfectly fine for most games and workbench but sometimes frustrating.

For you NTSC guys though I reckon it's probably the perfect thing!

You can adjust the pixel clock settings to remove any vertical jail bars too.





Return to “Member Intros”