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Old 12 February 2018, 14:11   #41
idrougge
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I agree about the SIMM sockets. Upgrading the memory of an A1200 would always add an extra cost, something like 100 £ / 200 DM because of the need of a custom board made in much, much smaller quantities than the SIMMs themselves. So whereas the PC crowd could always take advantage of sinking RAM costs, A1200 users were kept from even getting a single megabyte of fast RAM since the initial cost was several times higher, and if they did take that cost, the amount of memory they could get was effectively half that of the PC crowd.

I don't really agree about the need for a 030, though. The speed difference between 68020 and 68030 is quite minor — RAM makes so much more of a difference.
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Old 12 February 2018, 14:20   #42
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Commodore should have pushed the standard for games higher with the A1200. Even if it only did have the 020, they could have urged developers to make full use of AGA, a hard drive and maybe some fast RAM (perhaps by offering a bundle with a 1 or 2 meg card right from the start).

But as things turned out, early AGA games were pretty lack-luster. Most games were more or less the same as with the A500, maybe a little more colourful, delivered on a couple of floppies so there wasn't any incentive for people to upgrade. Had there been some really top tier games that made use of a hard drive, extra RAM, accelerators and whatnot, more people would have invested in those things rather than going for a PC or consoles.

Whether that could have saved the business in the long run, hard to say, but it definitely didn't help that the platform stagnated to a 1988-ish level (games-wise, anyway).
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Old 12 February 2018, 14:24   #43
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Amiga 1200 was expensive for what it offered. A floppy based computer, similar power of a slow 386 without a monitor and hard disk. Without any games too. PCs were cheaper and had more and better games around 1993-94.

Having and Amiga 1200 with a 68030, ram, hard disk and a multisync monitor was much more expensive than having a 386-VGA monitor and Hard disk from what I remember. Maybe 40% more expensive or so.
And it's normal, PCs used mass consumption parts made in Taiwan or China.
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Old 12 February 2018, 14:38   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nobody View Post
Amiga 1200 was expensive for what it offered. A floppy based computer, similar power of a slow 386 without a monitor and hard disk. Without any games too. PCs were cheaper and had more and better games around 1993-94.

Having and Amiga 1200 with a 68030, ram, hard disk and a multisync monitor was much more expensive than having a 386-VGA monitor and Hard disk from what I remember. Maybe 40% more expensive or so.
And it's normal, PCs used mass consumption parts made in Taiwan or China.
It wasnt expensive really for what you got, at £399 it was still the cheapest comparable computer (£299 in 1993) with the Falcon and Archimedes being £499, whilst the cheapest retail comparable PC was double the price at £799, so you paid your money and took your choice, games wise the A1200 outdid the former two, obviously not the latter, but the budget Amigas were really never competing against the PC only the desktop Amigas could you fairly compare, it was only years later when people compare games against the two, back then it you either owned consoles, budget computers or a PC
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Old 12 February 2018, 16:24   #45
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Originally Posted by Amigajay View Post
It wasnt expensive really for what you got, at £399 it was still the cheapest comparable computer (£299 in 1993) with the Falcon and Archimedes being £499, whilst the cheapest retail comparable PC was double the price at £799, so you paid your money and took your choice, games wise the A1200 outdid the former two, obviously not the latter, but the budget Amigas were really never competing against the PC only the desktop Amigas could you fairly compare, it was only years later when people compare games against the two, back then it you either owned consoles, budget computers or a PC
True:
US-Dollar to Pound exchange rate in 1992: 1.5

"Take a look for example at this Northgate advertisement from Infoworld in May of 1991. A business-class 386/33 with 4MB of RAM, a 200MB hard disk and 14" display went for $4299. A similarly-equipped 486-33 in the April 1 issue from Tandon was $7699."
from 1991s-pc-technology-was-unbelievable/

some ultra-cheap Hyundai 386SX/33:
2MB RAM, 85MB HD, ISA (no EISA !!)
for $1050 without monitor (1300 with)
PC-Mag Dec 1992
That was £700.

so no: I can really not understand the argument of being too expensive here.

Last edited by Gorf; 12 February 2018 at 22:40.
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Old 12 February 2018, 16:41   #46
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Originally Posted by idrougge View Post
I don't really agree about the need for a 030, though. The speed difference between 68020 and 68030 is quite minor — RAM makes so much more of a difference.
The difference isn't that much on lower clock speeds. But at lets say 28Mhz the CPU has to wait more often for the RAM, so missing the cache is more expensive and the 030 benefits from its larger L1 cache.

that's why I suggested a 68EC030@28Mhz earlier.
(the 25MHz rated version would probably been good enough ...)

And would have been a great benefit for marketing: (technically incorrect) the 020 was associated with the 286 for most customers, while the 030 was compared to the 386.

Last edited by Gorf; 12 February 2018 at 21:38.
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Old 12 February 2018, 16:49   #47
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299 x 1.5 about 450$. Add 030, RAM, hard disk (add about 600$ alone) and a multisync monitor (probably around 400-500$) and it had no games. You could get a 200$ used A500 and have the same games.

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Old 12 February 2018, 16:51   #48
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In my opinion CPU would have been perfectly fine (and chip-ram only config) _if_ chipset had been fully updated to 32/64-bit wide modes, but AGA only did it only for bitplanes and sprites.

CPU access to custom registers is still 16-bit wide and has same slow timing as 68000 A500! (At least chip ram is 32-bit wide)
4x faster blitter would have made HUGE difference.
Wider Copper (for example ability to do 2 or 4 MOVEs in single cycle) would also helped a lot.

A1200 was too unbalanced vs A500.
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Old 12 February 2018, 17:05   #49
Amigajay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gorf View Post
True:
US-Dollar to Pound exchange rate in 1992: 1.5

"Take a look for example at this Northgate advertisement from Infoworld in May of 1991. A business-class 386/33 with 4MB of RAM, a 200MB hard disk and 14" display went for $4299. A similarly-equipped 486-33 in the April 1 issue from Tandon was $7699."
from 1991s-pc-technology-was-unbelievable/

some ultra-cheap Hyundai 386SX/33:
2MB RAM, 85MB HD, ISA (no EISA !!)
for $1050 without monitor (1300 with)
PC-Mag Dec 1992
That was £700.

so no: I can really not understand the argument of being to expensive here.
You are comparing US prices where the PC took off quicker and hence had cheaper prices, in the UK where my comparions are made the PC was expensive, but the point still stands even with your US prices that PCs were more than double the price of budget Amigas and hence were in a different market.

Plus i would never touch a DOS based PC a bargepole even if we had the chance to go back and pick again!

Last edited by Amigajay; 12 February 2018 at 17:12.
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Old 12 February 2018, 17:18   #50
Gorf
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299 x 1.5 about 450$. Add 030, RAM, hard disk (add about 600$ alone) and a multisync monitor (probably around 400-500$) and it had no games. You could get a 200$ used A500 and have the same games.
As mentioned above: difference to 030 around $50 but lets say $100 for fun
Seagate 89MB $270 or
"Connor" 120MB $270
(from the same magazine from Dec. 92)
RAM was the same (2MB) on the PC offer.
Mitsubishi Diamond Scan: $450

That gives us a A1200/030 with 120MB HD and multisync monitor for $1270
Compared to the ultra cheap 386SX, 85MB HD, cheap monitor for $1300

no games, same games ... thats always the hen and the egg problem

And of course Toni is right (as always). AGA was not enough.
But that was my point in the beginning: what could C= have done even with nothing better than AGA in 1992. So at least give it a decent CPU and FastRAM and get AA+ ready asap.

Last edited by Gorf; 12 February 2018 at 19:58.
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Old 12 February 2018, 17:26   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gorf View Post
not much more but around 50$.
Which is a significant amount in its own right.

Quote:
That's what I am talking about! Planing it right from the start.
No: a 68020@14Mhz was not an option for an machine in 1992.
(as mentioned earlier you would by than find better CPUs in printers and washing machines.)
Consumer electronics using such CPUs would be pretty high end... Besides, it behaved more like an '020 at 7MHz due to the lack of fast RAM and bus strangulation (as Toni mentioned).

Quote:
no additional prototyping.
Additional prototyping *costs*.

Quote:
the main problem in 1992 was, that they could not deliver enough units, due to too few chipsets ordered.
That's another issue entirely.

Quote:
I am sure a the demand for a 68030 version would have been ever greater, even with 50$ more on the price!
Who was buying the A1200? Most people seemed to be buying them for playing games, so who would pay an extra $50 on an already expensive computer, when it wouldn't make a difference to the majority of the games they played? As I said, CPU upgrades were available at the time - those who wished to could upgrade - most didn't, making the move to PCs or Playstations instead.

Quote:
The same people you are talking about had no problem to spend even more money on a PC, when no adequate Amiga was available.
Yep. So why didn't they upgrade their Amigas? Especially if that route was cheaper than buying a whole new PC?

A more powerful A1200 at a little bit higher price would not have been too expensive but just right. People were manly disappointed by the low specs and not by the price.[/quote]
Hmmmm, a lot of people were also disappointed by the price, which is why I keep mentioning it. I couldn't get one myself because it was too expensive at the time, and likewise for many of my C64 and 8-bit Atari owning friends. It was only the more privileged kids that got A1200s for Christmas - how many more would've missed out if it was more expensive still?

Quote:
(Of course a low-cost desktop "A1000 NG" would have been an even better idea...)
Like the '030 A4000?

Quote:
you can solder the first megabites in directly to avoid this.
Indeed, but that still leaves the additional cost of parts, manufacture and testing of the extra sockets.

Quote:
There are SMD-SIMM-sockets, so no through hole soldering.
Still extra manufacturing and testing steps (see above), and they weren't a thing at the time, and probably more expensive than their standard through-hole counterparts.

Quote:
You could save the clock-port instead.
And put the RTC on the board instead?

Quote:
I never meant to put the default RAM on SIMMs, but wrote about an easy way to upgrade, for users or dealers.
That's not how it read to me but fair enough. Still adds cost, as above.

Quote:
I do not know about the ratio of people upgrading their A1200. Do you?
Having dealt a lot with second-hand A1200s at the time it would seem that most people who moved onto the PC or Playstation did so from unexpanded machines. Anecdotal, I know, but that's my sample set. What makes you think otherwise?

Quote:
It was sold in much fewer numbers than the A500, in part due the reasons mentioned above.
Poor cost/performance ratio? Or already high initial cost?

Quote:
So it might give the impression only few people upgraded due to overall fewer sales.
I'm obviously not talking absolute numbers of upgrades, but relative. Talking about absolute numbers of upgrades compared to the A500 is utterly meaningless, so why would it make sense for me to do that?

Quote:
Also it was much cheaper für PC users to upgrade their RAM, so they did more often. Thats the reason I would have preferred a SIMM socket on the board.
Indeed, a large part of the reason for the very high initial cost of PCs (and big-box Amigas) was their additional expansion capability, such as SIMM and ZORRO/ISA and later PCI connectors.

Quote:
So to summarize your point:
there was nothing Commodore could have done to generate more sales?
Very little, no.
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Old 12 February 2018, 18:06   #52
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Old 12 February 2018, 18:56   #53
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@ nobody

What year?
(And somehow I am missing the point: that proves what I was saying, doesn’t it?)
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Old 12 February 2018, 19:36   #54
Gorf
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Originally Posted by Daedalus View Post
Which is a significant amount in its own right.
we are talking about 10 - 15 % increase

Quote:
Consumer electronics using such CPUs would be pretty high end... Besides, it behaved more like an '020 at 7MHz due to the lack of fast RAM and bus strangulation (as Toni mentioned).
Oh, please!
that was probably the first thing I mentioned here: give it FastRAM
(1 Chip, 1 Fast soldered on, SIMM-sockets to upgrade both easily)


Quote:
Additional prototyping *costs*.
there is no "additional"!

we just saw the GVP ad here. A much smaller company had obviously no problem in offering a whole range of cpu-boards at a reasonable price, while C= essentially had only 4 products left in 92, with the unchanged C64 being one of them.


Quote:
Who was buying the A1200? Most people seemed to be buying them for playing games, so who would pay an extra $50 on an already expensive computer, when it wouldn't make a difference to the majority of the games they played? As I said, CPU upgrades were available at the time - those who wished to could upgrade - most didn't, making the move to PCs or Playstations instead.
still not clear what percentage did or did not.
Given a easy and cheap possibility for more RAM, surly more would take that route...

and lacking a good offer to start with, .....

and after the bankruptcy most did not believe in any future of the platform, an did not want to invest more money in upgrades.



Quote:
Hmmmm, a lot of people were also disappointed by the price, which is why I keep mentioning it. I couldn't get one myself because it was too expensive at the time, and likewise for many of my C64 and 8-bit Atari owning friends. It was only the more privileged kids that got A1200s for Christmas - how many more would've missed out if it was more expensive still?
not sure.
Fact is, they could have sold more in 1992, with more units available.
The customer base was getting older, from teenagers towards young adults, that could afford higher priced equipment.
The PC was selling to these people, while the C= had no good offer.
Since you could not afford a A1200 back than, you could not afford a PC as well.
Cases like this were not the "problem". You could not get anything better for a lower price in 1992.

C= would have needed to target the people that could afford a new amiga, but changed platform or never considered Amiga.

Quote:
Like the '030 A4000?
no.
more like:
A1000 Plus


[QUOTE]
And put the RTC on the board instead?/[QUOTE]

AFAIK there are some boards with designated space for clock-chip and battery, so it seems it was already planed to have it on board.
(yes, that makes it even more expensive, by ... $5?)

Quote:
Very little, no.
and that little (to increase sales) would have been?

Last edited by Gorf; 12 February 2018 at 21:41.
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Old 12 February 2018, 20:05   #55
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it was crap. Offered nothing over 500.

they should have just redesigned a500 and made it alot cheaper.
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Old 12 February 2018, 20:22   #56
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it was crap. Offered nothing over 500.

they should have just redesigned a500 and made it alot cheaper.
that was the original plan for the A600, than still called A300.
(Integrate ECS into one or two chips and a much smaller board... that would have helped to reduce costs.)
But they failed and the A600 had $50 more production cost than the canceled A500 plus.

And the A600 did not sell at this price, because one could not use all the nice expansions the A500 could use... that was an other big mistake of C= in 1992.
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Old 12 February 2018, 20:28   #57
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Originally Posted by donnie View Post
it was crap. Offered nothing over 500.

they should have just redesigned a500 and made it alot cheaper.
They did, it was the A600, of course Commodore fucked it up by selling it for £399 when the rrp of A500 was £349 and plenty of places selling for £299, had they launched at £299 and reduced to £199 It would have done well.

@nobody that ad proves to me even with a 386/16 and with windows and mouse and colour monitor it still came to £999! That setup couldn't run Doom either, you would need the £1399+£200 (£1599) bundle (edit: just noticed those prices don't include VAT!)

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Old 12 February 2018, 20:29   #58
nobody
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Originally Posted by Gorf View Post
@ nobody

What year?
(And somehow I am missing the point: that proves what I was saying, doesn’t it?)
Should be early 1993. Maybe the PC is a year earlier (1992) as the PCs had bigger hard drives usually and existence of 286 as an entry point.
So the choice is between A4000 with a hard drive and a multisync and a 386DX/20 with hard drive and VGA monitor. Should be the same price back then. I guess Amstrad could have some even cheaper 386s than this but I didn't search much.
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Old 12 February 2018, 20:42   #59
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Should be early 1993. Maybe the PC is a year earlier (1992) as the PCs had bigger hard drives usually and existence of 286 as an entry point.
a 16Bit machine. A2000?

Quote:
So the choice is between A4000 with a hard drive and a multisync and a 386DX/20 with hard drive and VGA monitor. Should be the same price back then. I guess Amstrad could have some even cheaper 386s than this but I didn't search much.
I am with you at this point: the A4000 pretended to be a workstation (in price), but was in many aspects a step down from the A3000 (still my favorite)

I mentioned the planed A1000 Plus, that would have filled the obvious gap. The engineers had the right idea there.

the time of keyboard computers was over, but nobody told C=.

Last edited by Gorf; 12 February 2018 at 21:53.
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Old 12 February 2018, 20:44   #60
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JESUS CHRIST, LOOK AT THOSE PRICES!! Who in their right mind would buy an underpowered and vastly overpriced PC in comparison to an A1200? Doom wasn't even out yet!
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