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Old 14 November 2013, 10:59   #1
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Chance to pick up a REAL amiga - worth it?

Hello everyone,

I have been on a serious amiga kick this past week - I can't get enough. I was lucky enough to stumble on a local ad for an Amiga 2000 with a 1084s monitor and most hookups. I am, however, very torn as to whether I should go ahead with the purchase. I am really just planning to use it as a gaming machine - I am sure I will mess about with workbench and some other software, but the real concern is being able to run 90%< of games. I have done enough research on amiga hardware in the past to be aware of the issues you face when trying to set up a real system. Monitor problems, floppy conversion, file transfer, e.t.c.

So really, I am just wondering how many difficulties i am likely to encounter trying to play games on this system. How reliable are these 1084 monitors 20 years on? It seems the only modern display option cheaper than the Indivision is this: http://www.amigamaniac.com/RGB_to_PAL_NTSC_adapter.html - will this still give me an acceptable picture if the monitor was to die? I also plan to throw in a HxC rev F into the floppy slot, would that work well for playing multidisk games (with the option to save?). It seems that I could also go for one of these instead: http://a4000t.com/store/index.php?ma...ex&cPath=65_79 - however, that would really leave me with only WHDload games, which I don't know if I could run on a stock system. Is it possible to add more ram without buying a very expensive accelerator card?

I am really hoping not to spend more than ~150$ on this after I purchase the system itself, so going all out on the system is not an option for me. Should I consider just sticking with emulation? I love original hardware and have always wanted an amiga. However, the technical knowledge and parts required have always made me shy away.

*EDIT* How is the picture quality using a GBS-8220 SC? Can I buy pre-built amiga leads for this board?

Please let me know your thoughts!

Thanks,

Critic

Last edited by Critic; 14 November 2013 at 11:42. Reason: Added question
 
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Old 14 November 2013, 12:18   #2
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Hiya and welcome

A2000 isn't a very popular model and as you're after a gaming machine it makes even less sense for you.

If you're after games on the real-deal, you've really got two choices. You either go for an A500 and play OCS/ECS games or you go for an expanded A1200 and play WHDLOAD OCS/ECS/AGA games.

For the monitor choice, you either go really old-school and muck about with an old CRT or you go with an Indivision and use a modern LCD monitor. Another option is to go RGB to SCART to a modern TV (personally I'd recommend the Indivision option).

This will give you an idea how sharp an LCD can look with an Indivision -> [ Show youtube player ]


So the cheapest way would be a pretty standard A500 with (for example) a floppy drive emulator or an A1200 with a RAM card and CF hard drive.

If you've got more money to burn you'd look at upgrading with an Indivision and maybe adding an accelerator card.

The only thing you'll miss out on is support for RTG games but there aren't really that many to be fussed about.
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Old 14 November 2013, 12:41   #3
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*EDIT* How is the picture quality using a GBS-8220 SC? Can I buy pre-built amiga leads for this board?

Please let me know your thoughts!

Thanks,

Critic

A 2000 with a 1084 is a good start. Lots of room inside for addons, and you may have some already in there. Just don't butcher the case if you do fit one of those ugly HxC whatevers...

The GBS is utter crap. 320x modes (games) look like composite, workbench even worse. It can't handle dithering effects at all.

Stick with the 1084. It is the best.
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Old 14 November 2013, 14:33   #4
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An A2000 would make an exciting project if you enjoy tinkering with old Computers but for Gaming I highly recommend an A1200 and one of the ACA12xx cards. It will serve you well for 99% of WHDLoad Games and will work via RGB-Scart with most CRT/LCD TV's depending on your preference.

Last edited by fitzsteve; 14 November 2013 at 14:49.
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Old 14 November 2013, 14:38   #5
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Amiga 1200 and an accelerator is the only choice for infinite pleasure. All the others are for geeks
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Old 14 November 2013, 14:55   #6
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The A2000, when coupled with a card such as the GVP Impact Series II (DMA SCSI/8mb FAST) is a fantastic machine. It is compatible with both WHDLoad and A500 floppy based games, so you get the best of both worlds.

Forget the crappy Commodore monitor though. Get yourself a nice big flatscreen CRT such as a Sony Trinitron or LG Flatron.
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Old 14 November 2013, 15:04   #7
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Forget the crappy Commodore monitor though. Get yourself a nice big flatscreen CRT such as a Sony Trinitron or LG Flatron.
The Commodore monitor is not "crappy", it is literally the best display available.

Trinitrons and other aperture grilles look horrendous for amiga video. I'm replacing mine as soon as I can.
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Old 14 November 2013, 15:39   #8
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The Commodore monitor is not "crappy", it is literally the best display available.

Trinitrons and other aperture grilles look horrendous for amiga video. I'm replacing mine as soon as I can.
what?
an aperture grille monitor + scandoubler for any Amiga is the MAX experience
if you are worried about is so sharp and games looks pixelated, you can adjust convergence/moire/focus to make it more blurry
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Old 14 November 2013, 16:37   #9
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Oh, actual VGA monitor?

I'm weary of Scandoublers in general. When they can do 50Hz, it is okay for smoothness. But even my Indivision ECS had weird noise on the signal.

Trinitron TV is what I meant. Very annoying for screen centering/brightness/contrast and also the Grille gives it a weird texture. I hate mine.
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Old 14 November 2013, 16:41   #10
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Get it while it's hot, man. The 2000 is basically a 500 with expansion slots, so it's very compatible with OCS games, and cheaper and easier to upgrade when you do feel the need. Double-check that the battery hasn't leaked, but otherwise you shouldn't have any trouble with it. It's a bit of a hassle to set up transfer between a PC and an Amiga intially, but ADF Sender Terminal is a good start.

And the 1084 is a fine display, perfectly suited to the Amiga's native video modes; don't bother with fancy modern displays, you'll just get crappy upscaling.
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Old 14 November 2013, 17:31   #11
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Amiga display preference are very subjective, don't take it from someone else what is 'the best' just find what works best for you

If you want to Game like back in the day then you will enjoy a C= 1084 or Philips CM8833. You could even look for one of the Microvitec M1438 which has it's own 23pin RGB lead.

I'm totally happy using my Amiga's on LCD TV's with RGB-Scart cables, it might not work for you as vertical scrolling games will be choppy, it all depends on what you want.

You could even use any old CRT TV with RGB-Scart too.

Last option is a scan doubler and modern flat screen Monitor, this is the most expensive option and although provides a sharper display will still suffer choppiness in scrolling. With some scan doubler's like the Indivision AGA you get access to extra screen modes so you can enjoy a higher resolution Workbench, for example I have the Indivision AGA MkII on my A1200, you can read about it here in my blog:

http://www.fitzstevesamigaworld.co.uk/?p=100

Because I do a lot of stuff in Workbench, not just playing Games the extra screen modes for me outweigh the disadvantages associated with scrolling.

Good luck with your project
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Old 14 November 2013, 17:31   #12
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I don't understand why anybody would suggest an A500 as a gaming machine, you can't play AGA games on it which rules out a lot of the best ones (most games from 1993 onwards.) So for me the choice for a gaming machine is either an A1200 or A4000, the only two AGA Amigas (or a CD32 of course, which is basically an A1200.)

Then you need to decide if you prefer a console-type computer like the A1200, or a desktop. Personally I like the A4000 as you don't have wires everywhere, and for me the best Amiga games were mouse games so having a desktop makes sense anyway.

So the A1200 is probably the 'best' choice, but don't rule out the A4000 either.

Last edited by edd_jedi; 14 November 2013 at 17:42.
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Old 14 November 2013, 17:38   #13
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i think thats not actually true,i reckon about 90% of the games were made for the 500.

the 2000 is still a usable machine,if you take on board there running costs like any other old machine.
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Old 14 November 2013, 17:39   #14
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90% in volume sure, but there are a lot of AGA only games that I really like. Just personal preference I guess.
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Old 14 November 2013, 17:42   #15
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90% in volume sure, but there are a lot of AGA only games that I really like. Just personal preference I guess.

yes,exactly

there are games i like for these and games i dont.
most of them are for ocs and ecs machines adventures and rpg not many of those are for aga machines.

although the aga machines might be cheaper/easier to upgrade with drives memory etc.
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Old 14 November 2013, 17:53   #16
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I don't know why anyone would want a 1084 for gaming unless you want it just for the nostalgia. 14inch screen? No thanks.

Get a £5 quid 21" or 19" Trinitron and connect via RGB.
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Old 14 November 2013, 18:11   #17
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You don't know why? It's already been said why.

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Amiga display preference are very subjective,

But it isn't though. The goal is to take the video signal and turn it into something you can stare at with your eyes, with the highest degree of accuracy possible.

50/60Hz framerate conversion, dodgy sampling, upscaling etc are not accurate.

It is a dead subject, anyway. If he buys the 2000 he gets a 1084 included, this is a good monitor with excellent picture quality. The alternatives involve blowing more cash on scandoublers, or inferior quality CRT TVs and scart cables, or the visual cancer that is the GBS. All have worse results than just keeping the "free" 1084.
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Old 14 November 2013, 21:37   #18
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Trinitron TV is what I meant. Very annoying for screen centering/brightness/contrast and also the Grille gives it a weird texture. I hate mine.
I have none of these problems with my Trinitron. They make excellent monitors.
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Old 14 November 2013, 22:05   #19
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Well both of the ones I've had make poor ones.
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Old 14 November 2013, 22:29   #20
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Okay, but that would suggest that display preference is really subjective.

Display accuracy is one thing, but it's got to be pleasing to the viewer as well. The two don't always go hand in hand.

What is accuracy anyway? Some would suggest a scandoubler and an LCD monitor while others suggest old school monitors like a 1084 whilst I suggest a CRT TV? Accuracy of display itself could be said to be subjective too.
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