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What retro computer activity did you get up to today?

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by adz, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. CRTified

    CRTified Member

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    I've given many an Iso sponge bath before, but this is the first time trying out the necroware-inspired (adopt respectful German accent) insert the hardware in the soapy water and give a gut (gentle) scrub. Thorough soap rinse out. A few hours in the warm sun, and now it is literally hanging by string on the washing line, getting a warm breeze in the face for a few more hours. We'll see how it looks after that.

    dryandgoodbye(water).jpg

    I was conscious to clear the board of any removeables first. There's one socketed IC which I'm considering removing in the interests of uber-thorough drying. Perhaps I'll leave that until after the day's natural drying process - as a test case, to see exactly how dry it got under there on it's own.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2021
  2. Hotrod2go

    Hotrod2go Member

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    Matched pair of Kingston Rambus RIMMs, 256MB RDRAM-Direct 800MHz Non-ECC.
    2x256MB_Kingston RIMM - Copy.jpg

    Now I need an Intel 850E chipset board!
     
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  3. gdjacobs

    gdjacobs Member

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    I was meaning CD-i, full stop. Sorry I wasn't clear.
     
    elvis likes this.
  4. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Yeah I definitely think that whole thing was Philips taking a punt that FMV was the future of everything, right?

    And honestly, if it was, they could have led the way. But third parties just didn't back it, and it kinda went nowhere. I mean, we could be singing the same song about Sony and the PS1 if 3D hadn't exploded. Although in hindsight, it was easy to see why 3D worked and FMV didn't, when it comes to the more dynamic nature of what makes video games actually fun and different to watching movies (even "choose your own adventure" style ones).

    On that topic, I've always wondered why folks like Netflix and YouTube don't do more modern takes on FMV. I know the Black Mirror guys tried it on Netflix, and I've seen one game like that on Snapchat too. But they never seem to get the numbers.
     
  5. Flamin Joe

    Flamin Joe Member

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    I used to be really pendantic and rinse the boards with distilled water as a second rinse after using just normal tap water to remove the soapy water. My reasoning was it would remove any tap water residue from all the chemicals they add to tap water not to mention whatever might be in the pipes but I think that was going a little overboard.

    I think I know the video your talking about as it's the one which put me onto using Simple Green for cleaning electronics. I haven't been game enough to do what he did with a CRT but it works wonders with the PCB's and I've used it on a few motherboards as well. Good product. :thumbup:
     
  6. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    I love the stuff. Nothing works as well to make 30 year old electronics look like 10 year old electronics.
     
  7. gdjacobs

    gdjacobs Member

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    Definitely, although I think it was also a case of devs jumping into the format without understanding how to make use of it. Smoothly integrating video with other interactive content so you can better immerse the player in the story was a new skill which nobody had developed yet. Lots of titles were pushed out the door with one of two gimmicks -- a generic game with some B-movie footage strapped on, or a B-movie with a few interactive plot choices included. With the CD-i going for $799 on release, Philips needed something which would blow gamer's minds, and they didn't really have it.
    [​IMG]
    Do we have a similar product to properly repair computer smells?
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2021
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  8. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    There's always garbage cash-ins on every platform, but I think the great shame of the CD-i was that it was *only* garbage cash ins, and nothing else.

    I mean, 90% of Wii games were complete junk. But the 10% that were worth buying were amazing. I don't think the CD-i ever had its "killer app", sadly.


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Totally unrelated - some mad genius puts a Pentium CPU in a 386 motherboard, and it works!
    https://dependency-injection.com/pentium-on-a-386-motherboard/
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2021
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  9. DonutKing

    DonutKing Member

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    For lack of a better thread I'll pose a question here...
    I have a couple of old PC motherboards that won't POST. I've swapped everything I can, there's no physical damage I can see. They're too good to throw away.

    My cousin is an electrical engineer and has an oscilloscope. Although its been a long time since he's done anything with it - he works for a retail power company these days, microelectronics aren't really his thing.

    Is there anything I can get him to check to help diagnose these boards?

    The obvious thing to try is a recap but without any visual evidence of damaged caps I'm reluctant to go to that much effort, so I was hoping we can test a few things and eliminate any other issues first.
     
  10. bYrd

    bYrd Member

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    DonutKing thing about a scope is someone needs to know how to use it - well - otherwise it's not going to help much.

    I'd get one of those cheap ISA PC POST cards and also double check the BIOS, do you know anyone that has a TL866 programmer?
     
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  11. DonutKing

    DonutKing Member

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    I have a G540 USB programmer, and have already checked the BIOS.
    I'm just looking for something else to try before just blindly replacing components on the board....
     
  12. rugger

    rugger Member

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    Then you will probably want a ISA/PCI PC Post card to see exactly how far the PC is getting into it's boot cycle.
     
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  13. CRTified

    CRTified Member

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    The minor annoyance of viewing a USB stick full of old Windows and DOS programs, selecting all with the intention of Deleting, then somehow leaning on the keyboard such that Wine starts running all 32 setup programs at once. :tongue:

    This is how Chernobyl happened (contrary to the popular mini-series depicting slightly otherwise).
     
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  14. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Simplest thing is to test all caps and resistors for shorts. So often a single component that's blown and shorted is the culprit to a whole board not working.
     
  15. DonutKing

    DonutKing Member

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    The cheap aliexpress POST card I have doesn't even pick up any codes on one of the boards. Clock and voltage lights are on but it never picks up anything on the 7-segment display. The card appears to be working in other boards though.

    Yes this is my thinking as well, but can you test these without desoldering from the board?
     
  16. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Not always, but it's not a bad start to try and limit the things you have to pull off the board to test out of circuit.

    Testing for breaks due to dead components is often more difficult, as voltage will route around the board and give you a non-infinite ohms reading. But shorts are typically pretty easy to spot as they'll show up as 0 ohms, and are pretty quick to find with your audio alert on your multitester.
     
  17. gdjacobs

    gdjacobs Member

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    Many components that fail open result in no to small penalties to stability and functionality, as long as the number of failures is small and not in a part with no redundancy. Shorts are generally more problematic in terms of killing components.
     
  18. CRTified

    CRTified Member

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    To summarise a boring story I was just telling elsewhere:

    Sometimes stable working builds are a nasty pack of delicately balanced wasps just waiting to be poked, and their upgrading should only be approached with a 2-day-minimum Playlist of non-stop Benny Hill music in hand, to accompany the upcoming circus.

    Upgrade complete :tired: One of my machines is now slightly faster. Wahooo!! :D
     
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  19. pfrcom

    pfrcom Member

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    Chasing up some files I know I had once-upon-a-time, to attempt a firmware repair

    No luck on computers-indoors, so resorted to garage machines

    First try Northwood 3.4 on Intel D865GBF, dual-booting MX Linux 18.3 & Win7 - not stored there

    Second try K6-3+/400 on Asus P55T2P4, 192MB RAM (mighty HX chipset FTW), all-SCSI, dual-booting Win2000 & Win98 depending on which disk(s) I tell controller to spin up - FOUND 'EM

    Finally, long-overdue Linux update on former, and this post coming to you from there
     
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  20. badmofo

    badmofo Member

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    I tested out a Hercules Stingray that I bought a while ago as a backup of the ARK2000 card I use in my socket 7 machine. Not my pic (being lazy) but it's a handsome card and produces a really nice image - very colourful and bright. But it's a little older than my other card (a 'Legend 64' AKA 'Diamond Stealth 64') and sadly can't handle the 130Hz refresh rate I need for SMS emulation on that machine. I tried a few things, including switching out the BIOS chip with my other card and that did improve things, but I couldn't get it past ~110Hz. It has a different DAC so that might have something to do with it, and the brighter image I guess.

    It's a shame because it's a actually a tiny bit faster than the Legend 64 but oh well, back onto eBay it goes!

    [​IMG]
     
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