A500-X has arrived

So my new project has arrived.

One very tidy looking Commodore Amiga 500 complete with original mouse, power supply and 1084S monitor donated by my old mate Robert.

It is (well, was until I got it) a virgin Rev 6 Amiga 500, still had the original warranty stickers intact.

Those are now in pieces as I strip down the system to inspect it, confirm what version chips etc are installed and see if anything requires replacing.

It came with a Commodore A501 RAM expansion card with battery installed – but NOT a Varta battery by the looks of it. Put it this way, theres no leakage that I can see so far – they soldered the shielding around the expansion, so to get into it, I need to get a soldering iron (I only have a heavy duty one).

So whats the plan ?

I’m going to (over time) replace the floppy with a GoTek drive, upgrade the Kickstart ROM to 3.x and maybe even get an ‘030 CPU for it with RAM expansion and IDE connector to allow a HDD to be connected.

It will be known as the “A500-X”.

So wish me luck, and keep up to date on my progress via the Amiga menu link.

Amiga 500 – Mine. Wow.

I’ve had a few Amigas in my possession over the years, but always ended up passing them along for various reasons, but lately I’ve been looking out for another one to keep and upgrade with something such as a GoTek drive.

In New Zealand, the prices on them has sky rocketed over the past couple of years, base A500 units WITHOUT PSU’s going for $200NZD+ which is insane.

Recently I remembered that one of my old mates from my childhood, had an Amiga at the same time as me – I wondered if he kept it after we lost touch (he moved to Australia) – so I asked my folks to ask his parents if it was still in the family home.

The response was “Yes”.

The parents contacted my mate and asked if he wanted to keep it or could it be moved on, and if so, that I was interested in it.

He apparently asked “why does he want it ?” – I haven’t seen him for 20+ years, so he is unaware of my ongoing interest in the Amiga.

Anyway, today my father calls me to say there is a large box sitting in his doorway containing an A500, 1084S monitor and assorted accessories etc.

My mate said to his parents “Give it to him for nothing” – OMG.

I will certainly be making an effort to contact my old mate to thank him and let him know I’m still a major geek 😉

I cannot pick it up for another week, but be assured, photos etc will be put online soon as I can.

Amiga Games HDF

So, I still like to play Amiga games.

I’ve used a few different game orientated systems such as FS-UAE Arcade but its a bit overkill for my needs.

So I decided to put together a HDF file that contains a basic Workbench installation with Directory Opus and a few other applications, and a number of HDD installable Amiga games.

I mentioned this on an Amiga Facebook group, and had a bit of interest from people who want to game from HDD, but don’t/can’t use WHDLoad for whatever reason.

Now the thing is, a lot of the games I’ve added so far, don’t officially have HDD installers, but since they are just AmigaDOS disks, I can copy the contents into a folder and they run happily.

Games such as the early Sierra stuff (Kings Quest, Police Quest) are literally just a copy and run process.

Others come with installers making the process even easier.

Then you get the ones that are AmigaDOS disks, but when copied to HDD, they ask for the disk to be inserted upon running the game.

These can be more fun.

Either need to look on Aminet for an HDD installer for the game, or be brave and poke around in the main game executable for references to DF0: .

I did this with a few games back in the day, and one that sticks to my mind was Floor 13. This was a 2 disk game, and only used DF0: . I was happy to use it off dual floppy drives, but it would not use any other drive.

So I copied the contents from both discs to my HDD, fired up Disk Peek and Update, and used its hex/ASCII viewer to examine the main game executable.

I found references to DF0: – so I changed these to F13: instead, set up an assign to the Floor 13 files and fired up the executable.

Worked perfectly. Running from HDD and no more disc prompts.

This method does not work for all games, but its worth a play with.