I received an email from them stating:The 'Laser Tank PCB: is compatible with the well-known Amiga Tank model, sold predominantly with Amiga 500 and Amiga 600 systems. If this is your mouse, please choose the "Laser Tank PCB" version
That stuck in my head, but I wasn't really sure what it meant (and I'm not sure they do, either, since they didn't articulate any differences to look for).We [were] aware one month ago about a few rare versions of the tank mouse that are not compatible with this PCB.
Then, this week I finally got my hands on a complete Amiga 1000 system for the first time. The tank mouse for the Amiga 1000 uses a unique connector which has a 90-degree angle. The 1000 can use any Amiga mouse, but none look as good as the original tank as it fits snugly to the side of the case and lets the cable fall naturally. It's very aesthetically pleasing, albeit a complete one-off design. After testing the mouse out, it took me about two seconds to realize that the mouse was in really bad shape. I opened it up and cleaned it thoroughly (it was really nasty). After doing that, my y-axis was perfect but the x-axis was still hopeless junk. After a few more attempts I came to accept the fact that I probably wasn't going to be able to fix it. Luckily I had three other tank mouses to scavenge, all in very good shape (all made from the 500/2000 timeframe).
I opened up the old 1000 tank, then I opened up one of my 2000 tanks. I couldn't believe what I saw. They both had the exact same "skin" but their guts were entirely different in drastic ways. This is like one of those "what's different' games where it looks like you're looking at two identical images but you have to find the subtle differences.
Between the two tank mouses, a few big things stand out:
- The button tap zones (the white/black circles I outlined with red rectangles) are vastly different sizes and heights
- The 1000's ball and ball socket is actually much bigger than the 2000's
- The tracker wheels - the things the ball makes contact with - are a completely different design. Post-1000 models are smaller on the interior and have far fewer parts, probably a result of Commodore's legendary cost-saving expertise.
- And most importantly, the wiring isn't the same at all. The 1000 tank has extra wiring not seen in the newer models.
So what if you want to use the just top shell - maybe to replace the outer plastic or buttons? Well the buttons are different between the two models as well. This could probably be hacked to work, but it would take some measuring.
So no - not all tanks were created the same.