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Old Yesterday, 09:17 PM   #3501
Topcat
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Originally Posted by momaka View Post
Aw poor TC, I feel so bad for your "insignificant" find .

Silly jokes aside, it's interesting to note this case has two front USB ports. I suppose it's not that old then - possibly from the early 2000's?
LOL...yea, I wasn't disappointed at all.... I have no clue what I'll do with that case,but I'm sure it'll get used in time. Finding something like that in new condition, me is still happy. Circa early 2000's would be accurate.

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10.4" viewable area color screen
I think that says it all. This thing must indeed have cost a small fortune to someone back then. Glad you're the person who found it. It would be a shame if someone else did and let it go to waste.
They were ~$1200-ish new, which back in 1996, wasnt bad....an entry level system was easily $1500 in those days. The display is a standard 10.4" industrial panel, replacements are easy to find....but its only 640x480...

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I bet this thing still has good vintage value, especially in that condition. Not suggesting that you should sell it or anything. After all, it fits with the rest of the cool systems you have. Just need to tell us when we can buy tickets to view your museum collection.
That one is definitely going to stay in the 'collection'....most certainly a very unusual piece of history....and to get it in that condition... It'll end up on display in my office somewhere. It's built like a tank, case & frame are solid heavy gauge metal. It's heavier than it looks.

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Meh. Personally I think Windows 95/98 fits it better.
I've always loved NT (I did test it, it ran good and drivers were easy to find), and it would still be period-specific...but since it originally came with win95, its a toss-up.

I did add a NIC when NT testing....it worked. CMOS battery is a tiny one, soldered to the motherboard....and is bad. I'll have to figure a workaround for that.
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Old Yesterday, 09:38 PM   #3502
momaka
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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The display is a standard 10.4" industrial panel, replacements are easy to find....but its only 640x480...
Good enough for DOS games, though.
And if you really want to push it towards "bleeding edge" gaming, I think that PC just might have enough grunt to barely run Half-Life or Counter-Strike (1.5 that is). Or Carmageddon.

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It's built like a tank, case & frame are solid heavy gauge metal. It's heavier than it looks.
No doubt.
I have a 15" Compaq server monitor from around that age (maybe 2-4 years newer... but still an early LCD by all means), and it also weights a ton. Almost on par with a 14" CRT. Now that's gotta tell you something!

BTW, that Compaq I have can only do 1024x768. And it has a very sloooooooow response time. Fine for what it was intended, though.
Anyways, currently, it's not working - needs new CCFL backlights. The originals were so worn out that they could barely glow pink. At first, I thought the inverter was bad. But no, inverter is fine and runs well with good CCFLs. It's one of those oldschool designs that doesn't have current limiting (or at least it's set very high). Hence why it kept trying to drive those dying CCFLs. In fact, it tried so hard that it even discolored its PCB a little. Didn't die, though. Now that's toughly-built!

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CMOS battery is a tiny one, soldered to the motherboard....and is bad. I'll have to figure a workaround for that.
Maybe get one of those wired laptop CR2032 batts and also salvage the required connector from a dead laptop mobo? Then you can put the battery anywhere you like.
Or was the original CMOS battery a rechargeable one?

Last edited by momaka; Yesterday at 09:40 PM..
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Old Yesterday, 10:02 PM   #3503
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Originally Posted by momaka View Post
Good enough for DOS games, though.
It would run Quake1 & Doom like nobodys business, in 320x200 of course...zero 3d acceleration at all with the 'Chips & Technology' 1mb graphics chip.


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Originally Posted by momaka View Post
No doubt.
I have a 15" Compaq server monitor from around that age (maybe 2-4 years newer... but still an early LCD by all means), and it also weights a ton. Almost on par with a 14" CRT. Now that's gotta tell you something!

BTW, that Compaq I have can only do 1024x768. And it has a very sloooooooow response time. Fine for what it was intended, though.
Anyways, currently, it's not working - needs new CCFL backlights. The originals were so worn out that they could barely glow pink. At first, I thought the inverter was bad. But no, inverter is fine and runs well with good CCFLs. It's one of those oldschool designs that doesn't have current limiting (or at least it's set very high). Hence why it kept trying to drive those dying CCFLs. In fact, it tried so hard that it even discolored its PCB a little. Didn't die, though. Now that's toughly-built!
The panel is in good physical condition, no scratches or bruises....but its tired....has ghosting & very slow response times. The 'north' portion of the screen was full of lines & artifacts when I first fired it, but cleaning the contacts in the ribbon fixed that. Corners are slightly discolored....but it adds to the charm, no intentions of replacing it unless I could find one with this ribbon config that could do 800x600 or 1024x768 (GPU will do 1024x768, but only in 256 colors).

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Originally Posted by momaka View Post
Maybe get one of those wired laptop CR2032 batts and also salvage the required connector from a dead laptop mobo? Then you can put the battery anywhere you like.
Or was the original CMOS battery a rechargeable one?
I'll desolder it tomorrow and find out....I didn't really look that close yet.
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Old Yesterday, 10:19 PM   #3504
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Since you get your GPUs second hand (or is it 3rd/4th hand? ), make sure to inspect the back of each card for missing/chipped SMDs. I've had cards come in such way, where there were a few tiny SMDs broken off right for the GPU V_core rail PWM controller. One of them was actually for the voltage feedback. Had I not noticed this and plugged the card in "as-is", most likely the GPU V_core VRM would have committed suicide. Also was working on another card today, where there was a chipped SMD ceramic cap that was part of the compensation network for the voltage feedback. With this cap missing, the GPU VRM would still likely have worked OK, but could start to oscillate at low or high load (depending on what that cap did) and cause something to blow only after some time. Of course, I noticed it, so that didn't happen.
Checked it, no broken SMDs.
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