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Old 24 January 2018, 23:33   #1
AwoLStill
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"Looking forward" to the Amiga 1200...

"Looking forward" to the Amiga 1200... before the final specs etc had been announced, the rumour mull saying a choice of either 68ec020 with 2MB or full 68020 with mmu (fpu optional) and 1MB of RAM...,


- and as it was with the EC020, IDE, and 2MB of RAM, it turned out to be a good bit of kit....

or perhaps seeing an A1000 in the flesh for the first time... I think that was 1985, round at a friends house.

It's been a while.
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Old 04 February 2018, 22:30   #2
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31 years later I got my own A1000. It still has killer looks but my mind insisted it was larger than it turned out to be.
IMO it could have been scaled up a bit in both x(5-10cm)/y(?)/z(2-3cm) and retained the look, but also having space for Zorro cards.
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Old 04 February 2018, 23:19   #3
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I was dismayed to hear at the time that the 68EC020 was a common controller microchip for washing machines, and I couldn't help thinking of the A1200 as being equal in processing power to the machine that cleans my clothes.
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Old 05 February 2018, 07:26   #4
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I have an old Tektronix digital oscilloscope from 1992, which also uses the 68020, and cost thousands if not tens of thousands at the time, so maybe that offsets the washing machines a bit It was a very capable processor and had many uses.
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Old 05 February 2018, 07:57   #5
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I have an old Tektronix digital oscilloscope from 1992, which also uses the 68020, and cost thousands if not tens of thousands at the time, so maybe that offsets the washing machines a bit It was a very capable processor and had many uses.
Is that the full 68020 or the "economy" 68EC020? I think the latter is cut-down and cheaper, which is why Commodore management would go for it. Typical.
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Old 05 February 2018, 08:00   #6
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Today "ec" would stand for "ecology" for sure
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Old 05 February 2018, 08:09   #7
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I'm not sure what version the oscilloscope has, but the only thing that is cut down in the EC version is the address bus (amount of memory that can be accessed). In 1992 the A1200 couldn't possibly have been released with more than 2+8 megs of RAM as stock, so it wasn't really a limitation.
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Old 05 February 2018, 10:41   #8
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Indeed, if the scope didn't need more than 16MB of RAM and I/O space, there was no point in going for the full 020 - it was entirely a waste of money. Same for the A1200. Fitting a full 68020 would have made it more expensive for precisely zero benefit for the vast majority of users.
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Old 05 February 2018, 10:44   #9
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I'm not sure what version the oscilloscope has, but the only thing that is cut down in the EC version is the address bus (amount of memory that can be accessed). In 1992 the A1200 couldn't possibly have been released with more than 2+8 megs of RAM as stock, so it wasn't really a limitation.
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Indeed, if the scope didn't need more than 16MB of RAM and I/O space, there was no point in going for the full 020 - it was entirely a waste of money. Same for the A1200. Fitting a full 68020 would have made it more expensive for precisely zero benefit for the vast majority of users.
Thank you, you've cheered me up!
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Old 05 February 2018, 18:09   #10
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When the Amiga 1000 arrived in 1985 a 7MHz 68000 was still a powerhouse. The Amiga was faster than any PC. (the 286 XT arrived a over a year later!)

In 1992 the 68EC020 was at the very low end. only 14MHz and no Fastram made this even worse.

It should have been a 68EC030 with 28MHz and the 1200 should have shipped with 1 Meg Chip and 1 Meg Fast and empty slots to upgrade both easily.

(and the chipset should have been full AAA ... but was not ready. But a faster processor and Fastram would have been no problem as the Atari Falcon from the same year proves)

All in all the A4000 and the A1200 were big disappointments for me back than.
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Old 05 February 2018, 18:24   #11
Minuous
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(the 286 XT arrived a over a year later!)
Actually, the IBM XT was released in 1983, and the IBM AT (ie. 286) was released in 1984.
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Old 05 February 2018, 20:37   #12
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Actually, the IBM XT was released in 1983, and the IBM AT (ie. 286) was released in 1984.
IBM XT 286

In 1986, the XT 286 (IBM 5162) with a 6 MHz Intel 80286 processor was introduced. Despite being marketed as a lower-tier model than the IBM AT, this system actually ran many applications faster than the ATs of the time with 6 MHz 286 processors, because the XT 286 had zero wait state RAM, which could move data more quickly.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_Personal_Computer_XT
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Old 05 February 2018, 23:32   #13
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The IBM Personal Computer AT, more commonly known as the IBM AT and also sometimes called the PC AT or PC/AT, was IBM's second-generation PC, designed around the 6 MHz Intel 80286 microprocessor and released in 1984 as System Unit 5170.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_Personal_Computer/AT
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Old 06 February 2018, 02:39   #14
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that's why I said XP ...

And until the PC got rid of the RAM-waitstates, which did happen with the 286 XT in 1986, it was slower than the Amiga.

That is for pure computation tasks. As soon as the PC needed to do more than text mode, it slowed down dramatically ... and sound was not there at all (Beeep).

And if you want to compare the Amiga 1000 to the AT, you need to take the price of initially 6000$ for the PC into consideration ...

That is the whole point here: Commodore had a great product in 1985. Faster and far more capable than PCs or even MACs and more affordable.

Sadly not so much in 1992.
After the Amiga had finally generated sales in million units per year, Commodore failed to deliver a good successor and lost the market.
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Old 07 February 2018, 00:33   #15
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Sadly not so much in 1992.
After the Amiga had finally generated sales in million units per year, Commodore failed to deliver a good successor and lost the market.
The thing was though, that from '85 to '92/93, the Amiga had not really changed at its core (which is one of the reasons so many of us love it), and for C= to keep up with the PC market etc, would've called for some major changes, which potentially would have ended up being a PC clone with no real backwards compatability with the earlier models, which would have killed it off anyway.

They were stuck between a rock and a hard place really. Go modern, lose your true fans, stay as you are, lose them to newer products.
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Old 07 February 2018, 16:36   #16
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The thing was though, that from '85 to '92/93, the Amiga had not really changed at its core (which is one of the reasons so many of us love it), and for C= to keep up with the PC market etc, would've called for some major changes, which potentially would have ended up being a PC clone with no real backwards compatability with the earlier models, which would have killed it off anyway.

They were stuck between a rock and a hard place really. Go modern, lose your true fans, stay as you are, lose them to newer products.
AAA and some faster clocked CPU plus FastRAM would have been more than enough in 1992.

PC had also the problem of all the legacy crap: CGA, EGA, VGA ... every new card supported the old stuff over decades.
Real mode, protected mode, A20 gate ... all there until very recently.

later in the 90s it would have been not very hard vor C= to put in a cheap single chip to support the old stuff alongside some new funky 3D.
Later this could have been done via software as we do now with UAE.
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Old 07 February 2018, 16:51   #17
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Wasnt excited at all about the A1200, my mate got one and we played Lemmings 2, then i took it home and played it on my A500! The CD32 got me excited alot more because of the CD technology, CD audio, Speech, No disk swapping and full buttons on a joypad, to me this was the next real Amiga, sadly having the specs of the A1200 gave it no hope against the competing consoles.
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Old 07 February 2018, 17:16   #18
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I believe A1200 was a cheap-quick job. Not so much an advance to A500, a 68020, plus 1 mb and a 256 color mode for adventures.

Off topic but if I remember well, Dave Haynie stated that when they announced the A1200 the sales of A500/600 stalled, they didn't have enough stock of A1200s, as a result it led to dramatic financial condition so it backfired and helped to kill Commodore faster lol
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Old 07 February 2018, 19:36   #19
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I believe A1200 was a cheap-quick job. Not so much an advance to A500, a 68020, plus 1 mb and a 256 color mode for adventures.

Off topic but if I remember well, Dave Haynie stated that when they announced the A1200 the sales of A500/600 stalled, they didn't have enough stock of A1200s, as a result it led to dramatic financial condition so it backfired and helped to kill Commodore faster lol
A1200 was released October 1992. Commodore didn't have enough stock to deliver to everyone who wanted one, and of course sales of A600 went down. A1200 should instead have been released early 1993 with enough supply to deliver.
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Old 08 February 2018, 00:11   #20
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A1200 was released October 1992. Commodore didn't have enough stock to deliver to everyone who wanted one, and of course sales of A600 went down. A1200 should instead have been released early 1993 with enough supply to deliver.
They better should have ordered enough AGA chips! (that were the missing parts as far as I know)
1992 was already late - waiting again would not help things.

And of course there was no need for the A600 at all ...
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