Retro hardware FAQs: call for submissions

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by elvis, Mar 15, 2019.

  1. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

    Jun 27, 2001
    There's a few console and arcade specific hardware FAQs in here, links at the bottom of post #2 in the FAQ sticky:

    I'm looking for some help from folks to write similar FAQs for a number of computer platforms. We've got some great discussion threads going (e.g.: the Amiga thread which is always being updated with new happenings in the Amiga user community), but these get too lengthy for people not familiar with the hardware. FAQ threads should be laid out for a complete beginner to be able to get a 1-post, basic understanding of the system, and information they need to start using it. Needs to be "detailed enough, but not too detailed" in the first post. Extra pedantic detail can follow in posts later in the same thread.

    Big ticket items would be:

    * Amiga hardware (M68K family CPUs, including the Amiga CD32)
    * Commodore 64, 128 and variants
    * Atari ST
    * IBM AT / Intel 286, 386, 486 family and clones (pre-Pentium, pre-Windows95. Maybe include XT in here? Maybe separate?)
    * Pentium/586, PentiumPro/686, Pentium II/III, AMD/Cyrix clones (Windows 95/98/NT4/2000/XP, early GPUs without hardware T&L, and up to about GeForce1/2/3)
    * MSX/MSX2 family
    * NEC PC-88 family
    * Sharp X68000 family
    * Apple II family (MOS tech CPUs)
    * Apple Macintosh family (M68K CPUs)
    * Apple Mac family (PowerPC CPUs)

    Try to keep an FAQ to a particular architecture. For example, if doing an Amiga FAQ, stick to either M68K architecture or PowerPC architecture, but not both. Major architecture jumps should be a different FAQ thread.

    Lots of others out there too, feel free to nominate something else if you feel an entire FAQ is worth it (and please don't nominate something for someone else to do - nominate only what you're willing to write about).

    Format of the article should include

    * Introduction to the hardware, including a short bio about the company and predecessor hardware leading to that point
    * Regional differences in hardware (NTSC vs PAL, regional availability, etc)
    * Hardware variations if it's a larger family of machines
    * How to use the systems today, including
    ** Obtaining original hardware
    ** Legally obtaining original software (OS, BIOS/firmware, applications, games)
    ** Mods, addons, transfer tools, etc for original hardware (can be a simple list to projects and sellers, or more detailed posts separately if required)
    ** Hardware simulators available (FPGA systems, clone hardware, etc)
    ** Backwards compatibility options (keep this brief - for example, in the Sony PS1 thread we mention you can play PS1 games on a PS2. From here we link to the PS2 thread, and don't go into more detail. Likewise in the PS2 thread we mention it can play PS1 games, and simply link to the PS1 thread).
    ** Emulation options
    * Links to any related OCAU discussion threads about the platform or generic solutions (Retro Display Solutions thread, MiSTer thread, etc).
    * Any good quality video links that help any of the above
    * Further documentation resources (dedicate communities and forums, recommended books, online resources at, etc)

    Reply here or PM me if you like. It's a big job and pretty time consuming (and certain ones will be much bigger in scope than others due to hardware variety), but myself and others can assist with editing, layout and flow if required.
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
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  2. badmofo

    badmofo Member

    Oct 10, 2011
    Great idea, I'll try and get off my arse and do one for the C64.
    elvis likes this.
  3. Camm

    Camm Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    Probably the only one that cares, but since I'm doing work with 3DO's atm I'll do one up in the next few months.

    I've also got a fair bit of knowledge of Sony BVM's now, so might be useful one to do as well.
    elvis likes this.
  4. OP

    elvis Old school old fool

    Jun 27, 2001
    As someone who's been using CRTs for a long time, I don't think isolating a particular brand into a sub-thread is really worth it. Up to you, but I think a detailed post or two can be added to the Retro Display Solutions FAQ, as then it's with all the other terminology and related content.

    Definitely happy for you to do one. The 3DO is interesting due to having multiple manufacturers, so that can get confusing for people wanting to play/collect. Plus all the recent modding options are worth detailing as well, as there seems to be a growing community around these.

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