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AuthorTopic: How about an A1200 instead? :)  (Read 807 times)

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How about an A1200 instead? :)
« on: November 07, 2002, 08:14:47 PM »
I found this A1200 in eBay UK. Does any one here with an eye for this kinda stuff spot any caveats I might have missed?

Take a look

Well anyhoo, wether this one is good or not I will buy one soon. I want a beginners intor to what I can and can't expect from an Amiga 1200. I know they have all manner of positively radical upgrades and stick-on bits for them out there but I would, a bit at a time, like to establish a system with the following stuff:

HARD DISK - no problem initially - I am busy organising a 2.5" 2GB IDE drive. I will eventually do some jiggery pokery to get it outside or rig a pair of 50mm extraction fans over the vents in the top of the case as I hear overheating is an issue in the compact cases (not that surprising)

CD-ROM - I have a SCSI external from my Mac side of things. Is it easy to get a CD drive working on an old Amiga? anarchic_teapot says the PCMCIA Squirrel card can cause unstable OS type problems. Any thoughts? This is about my best option at the momont, my other is an IDE CD-ROM, which would be fitting an IDEFix card and some cable work (where the hell do you mount it??). Any other SCSI options for the A1200?

I should just interject at this point and say I have a 220W PC AT PSU rigged for running an Amiga already so I'm not likely to run short of power :)

HI-RES GFX - Initially I'll cope with TV output but eventually I want to use it on a VGA monitor at a respectable res/refres rate, about 800x600 or better really. I don't know jack **** about Amiga graphics so i need a helping hand here.

FASTER CPU - Woohoo it's got a 68020. I can only hop it makes better use of it thn the Mac LC did ;) I will eventually want to upgrade the CPU (hence why I wanted to get the hard disk outside but gain - where do I mount it??). Do I bother witha 68040, maybe an 060 (something us apple dude never got to play with) or is a PPC a better option? Again I'm not too hot on what the OS/software performance is like on the different CPUs (again, I hope it's better than Apple's ;) ).

AMIGA OS 3.9 - I'm going to shoot for a 1200 with the 3.1 Disks inlcuded. But I will one day want the latest version of the OS (apart from 4.0 and that we will leave alone) so it has to be a goer. I *know* I need a CD drive and I *know* I need 3.1 ROMs but I *don't know* what CPU/GFX will do it justice, I'm guessing not a 14MHz 68020 and the original (AGA??) chip :(

NETWORKING - I have limited floppy handling capacity. I have a PC with a PC floppy drive and a Mac Quardra with a Mac floppy drive but I have really now way of getting anything onto the A1200 from the outside world easily. I thus need a network solution - my best idea so far being a PCMCIA NIC but that will mean internal SCSI or expanded IDE will be required as it will do away with my ability to handle the Squirrel PCMCIA card.

Well that tops it - I'm not asking for much - hahahahaha ;) - and consider this is a long term (over a year ands things are bound to change i nthat time right??) project as finances won't take much buying at the moment outside the A1200 and a hard disk and cable for it.

you guys are giving me great direction, my enthusiasm has only coma about from the enthusiasm I have seen in the community for these machines. My ultimate goal is to get a machine that is as good as the WinUAE emulated Amiga I had on my PC last yr, it was about the best you could expect for an emulator, running an emulate 040 with FPU, 2MB Chip 8MB Fast, 2 500MB hard disk partitions, AOS 3.1, Scalos, DOpus and a few other trimmings. Asdly I can't do it with an Amoga 600 so I guess the 1200 is a better bet.

Offline Damion

Re: How about an A1200 instead? :)
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2002, 12:45:04 AM »
 The graphics are obviously a bit weak and slow by today's standards, but still pretty impressive at times. I think a good bet would be an internal scandoubler, that way you can use a modern PC monitor, and it looks much better than a TV or 1084 by far!
  The ide fix is a decent setup, but it's difficult to use in a desktop 1200. If you don't mind leaving the case loose or modifying, go for that. It's cheaper than a PCMCIA scsi setup, and if you decide to get a tower it will work great. The ultimate would probably be Elbox's power flyer setup...speeds up the drives quite a bit, but also better in a tower unless you don't mind the huge cable out the back.
  A CPU card is a good idea...the 020, especially with fastram added,  was decent for it's time but a bit slow...get at least an 060. They're really fast compared to the 020! If you plan on running 3.9 you will at least need extra ram, but an 060 is definately ideal!
 Anyway, just my thoughts...

Offline Korodny

Re: How about an A1200 instead? :)
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2002, 02:02:57 PM »



I never heard about overheating problems, and I know a lot of guys who run 1-4 gig HD inside their A1200.

Keep in mind that the A1200's IDE port is not very fast though.


CD-ROM - I have a SCSI external from my Mac side of things. Is it easy to get a CD drive working on an old Amiga?

Yes. The CD file system included with OS 3.1 is crap though. Better upgrade to 3.9 or use a third party CDFS.


anarchic_teapot says the PCMCIA Squirrel card can cause unstable OS type problems. Any thoughts?

Squirrel is crap (by today's standards). Very slow - and you will want to use the PCMCIA port for a NIC anyway.


Any other SCSI options for the A1200?

Get a accellerator card with SCSI onboard (see below)



That's your biggest problem. Unless you want to put the whole computer in a tower case and either use a PCI bus board or a BlizzPPC/BlizzVision combo, you don't have access to a gfx card (not: the BPPC/Bvision will *not* work in a desktop case).

Your best option would be to get a scandoubler+flickerfixer. This will give you 640x512 with 256 colors (but you should restrict yourself to 64-128 colors, 256 is way to slow) on any standard VGA monitor.



Either get a Blizzard 1230 or a Blizzard 1260: Brilliant hardware. Don't forget to get the accompanying SCSI module.

1230: barely enough horsepower to run current apps (modern games, WWW, graphics stuff etc.), but good for some retro fun.
1260: All the power you need (AmigaOS is a lot faster than MacOS)



You should have a 68030 at least. GFX card is highly recommended, but it will work with AGA.



Yes, get a PCMCIA NIC. Forget about the squirrel, better get an accellerator with a SCSI module (it's probably ten times faster *without* eating much CPU power (like the squirrel)).