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Thread: suggestions for classic gameing computer setup

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    Default suggestions for classic gameing computer setup

    well, looks like i'll finally be getting a house and my own game room soon (fingers crossed) so i had something i was gonna ask an opinion about. growing up and even now computer gameing was a big part of my video gameing so i was going to dedicate one wall of comp gameing. i wanted to have a few systems set up, possibly 4 or 5. of course i could always pull out the other systems to play as needed but i wanted a few set up that i will be useing the most. i wanted the "perminant" setup to be what would probibly be the more influential or unique computers with experences you can't get on other comps or that host a number of "definitive" versions. anyways this is what i have in mind

    1) amiga 3000.
    2) C64
    3)apple IIGS

    i know for sure i want those 3 in the setup but not sure what i want to place in the next 2 slots, assumeing i have room

    i own
    Ti-99/4A
    MSX2 (obviously alot of unique games here)
    aquarious (what would be the point?)
    atari 800XL
    atari 1040ST (usually other systems like the amiga had the better ports so i don't see much point of this in a perminet setup. besides the great versions of Captian Blood i can't think of any reason to have this setup most of the time)

    i do not own
    DOS machine (i've really been thinking about this one. not to costly to put together and ALOT of great late 80's early-mid 90's games. i don't like to emulate but when i think about it is there a good reason for a dedicated DOS machine when there is DOSBOX? are there advantages to a dedicated DOS setup? a ibm pc is an ibm pc after all so is useing dosbox truely emulateing?)
    vic-20
    C128
    dragon32

    i've also really wanted to get into Euro computers so i've really considered getting a spectrum, amastrad or acorn archemedies setup, spectrum would probibly be cheapest.

    anyways, any suggestions, comments?

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    ServBot (Level 11) roushimsx's Avatar
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    There's no reason to go with a dedicated DOS setup if you already have a decent PC (and it's very, very, very hard to not have a decent PC since even cheap $300 PCs are including C2Ds @2.4+ghz). DOSbox offers so many advantages over building a DOS machine that unless you're just itching to juggle memory managers, manually adjust IRQs via jumpers, create multi boot menus or take up extra space then you may as well just stick with what you have.

    Never had an Amiga and always kind of wanted one, but I think WinUAE is at the point anymore where it'd just be moot to pick one up. Ditto for the MSX2 ...I really should have bought one of those back in the mid-late 90s when I could have put it to better use than I would today. Oh well

    I'd slide the MSX2 into the perma-slot for sure, but as far as the last one...hrml... no idea. Extra desk room, I guess!

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    SC - we've been on the same track of late - I have a dual classic computer setup right now - A500 w/ trapdoor ram (fuck yeah, Starflight) and my 64K upgraded 600XL

    of course my vote goes with tricking out the 800xl and hopefully you have some sort of SIO2xxx setup going so you can work without fiddling with floppies all the time. My 600XL gets tons of use between Yoomp! and Alternate Reality: The City (A8 = definitive version - the ports do not measure up)

    My next pickup would be a ZX Spectrum - preferably a later model that would hook up to a 1702. 1702 C64 monitors can display PAL so you'd be set. Audio splitter + iPod = entire Speccy library at your fingertips, heh. (Jet Set Willy = love)
    -AB+

    Holy crap. It's been a while.

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AB Positive View Post
    SC - we've been on the same track of late - I have a dual classic computer setup right now - A500 w/ trapdoor ram (fuck yeah, Starflight) and my 64K upgraded 600XL

    of course my vote goes with tricking out the 800xl and hopefully you have some sort of SIO2xxx setup going so you can work without fiddling with floppies all the time. My 600XL gets tons of use between Yoomp! and Alternate Reality: The City (A8 = definitive version - the ports do not measure up)

    My next pickup would be a ZX Spectrum - preferably a later model that would hook up to a 1702. 1702 C64 monitors can display PAL so you'd be set. Audio splitter + iPod = entire Speccy library at your fingertips, heh. (Jet Set Willy = love)
    i have a few 1702's so that would be great. been looking at spectrums for some time. especially after reading retro gamer and finding alot of good games.

    SIO2xxx setup? i acually have no idea what you speak of. EDIT - oh i see, lets you interface with the pc for virtual harddrives. nice
    Last edited by Soviet Conscript; 05-11-2009 at 07:18 PM.

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    I think DOSBox is technically emulating myself. That's my opinion though.

    I own a Tandy 1000 SX myself, got it off of eBay complete with disks and whatnot for $108. I think I saw one yesterday on there for $50 with monitor and keyboard. I love the Tandy, nice brand of computers. If you're looking for a DOS computer, that's what I would recommend.

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    I say you can't go wrong with a classic DOS or even Windows machine. There are a ton of great games, and nothing beats original hardware, especially when you assemble it yourself.

    As for the next spot, I say go for the Atari 800XL. I've always wanted an Atari computer, and that is a really great one for games.

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    Here are some sweet specs for a badass dosbox, but have fun finding drivers:

    Intel 2 cpu (pretty much anything will work)
    Voodoo 3 Card
    Soundblaster 16
    512MB Ram (You can add more, but with Dos, I highly doubt you will need it).

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    Quote Originally Posted by SegaAges View Post
    Here are some sweet specs for a badass dosbox, but have fun finding drivers:

    Intel 2 cpu (pretty much anything will work)
    Voodoo 3 Card
    Soundblaster 16
    512MB Ram (You can add more, but with Dos, I highly doubt you will need it).

    You just got pretty close to the specs of my system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SegaAges View Post
    Here are some sweet specs for a badass dosbox, but have fun finding drivers:

    Intel 2 cpu (pretty much anything will work)
    Voodoo 3 Card
    Soundblaster 16
    512MB Ram (You can add more, but with Dos, I highly doubt you will need it).
    On a DOS/Win9x machine, you're wasting your time and money when you go that high. Hell, some games may not even run if you have that much RAM and you'll still be stuck messing with slowdown programs to play a number of timing sensitive games, defeating the purpose of even having a DOS machine in the first place.

    The voodoo 3 also isn't fully compatible with games hardcoded for the voodoo 1 and only some of those are compatible with the Voodoo 2. Independence War was thankfully made compatible via a later patch, but you're really still better off just dgvoodooing it up.

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    I wouldnt bother with a C128. There were no C128 exclusive games unless you count Ultima's enhanced SID music. If anything just replace your C64 plan with a C128 just in case you want to hear sid music while playing! Either way, c64/128s are easy to find, and I know some folks that can help you out

    Maybe an Amstrad.... Amstrad more so than the spectrum. Alot of same games, but the colors are nicer.

    as far as Amstrad/Spectrum, you might want to hold off. Alot of the games are on the C64 so it may not be worth getting a dedicated setup for one since the C64 is easier to obtain and get setup. (Plus, you can get cracked .d64s all over the net and write to real disk no problem!)

    You could emulate them on a DOS/Win9x machine probably. haha. I used to play C64 games on VICE w/ a P166.

    You could condense alot of space and open more slots by emulating Amiga w/ AmiKit or just WinUAE as configuring and getting a gamefriendly Amiga is a pain in the ass. You need WHDLoad , it is a must.

    whichever computer emulates Amiga can also use DOSBOX. Then you can buy an MT-32 and play dos games with some really nice Roland music. (Ultima VI and VII in particular!). Theres no real merit to using a real DOSBOX from what I gather. I have setup DOSBOX and have a huge directory of games. I played through World of Xeen, a bunch of Ultimas, some adventure games, and even descent. Had no problems. DOSBOX is very solid, and like I said it supports external MIDI devices and is beyond easy to setup! http://www.dosbox.com/comp_list.php Check out the compatibility list, it speaks for itself. I see no real reason to use a real DOS machine anymore unless you already have it and its ready to go.


    But, If you're adamant about getting an Amiga (theyre mighty sexy! I know!) ,I know someone close to both me and you that has A3000 and more for sale. VA isnt far from Pittsburgh!


    His A3000 has an accelerator and video board, a built in scan doubler (use any VGA/LCD monitor). You would just need to install WHDLoad and you're set!

    PM me if you want me to bug him. Hes probably got C128s/stuff too and could get you a giant box o' Commodore headed your way to take care of that part of your future setup!
    Last edited by Arkhan; 09-27-2009 at 03:48 PM. Reason: forgot to finish talking about dosbox

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    Quote Originally Posted by SegaAges View Post
    Here are some sweet specs for a badass dosbox, but have fun finding drivers:

    Intel 2 cpu (pretty much anything will work)
    Voodoo 3 Card
    Soundblaster 16
    512MB Ram (You can add more, but with Dos, I highly doubt you will need it).
    My DOS rig is similar, but that's really overkill for RAM. Seriously, I'm not even sure if those old motherboards will support that much!

    Pentium II 266
    Voodoo 3 2000 AGP
    Soundblaster AWE64 ISA
    128Mb PC100 SDRAM
    80gb IDE HDD
    Windows 95 on top of DOS 7.0
    $15 black ATX case from CompUSA (bye bye beige box)
    Iomega ZIP drive (gotta transfer abandonware...)

    I've heard good things about ISA soundcards, and I'll tell you that midi synthesis coming out of mine sounds a hell of a lot better than anything emulated in DOSBox. My setup runs ALMOST everything, from ancient DOS stuff to System Shock 2 and UT99. I don't have anything that uses DOS Glide drivers (to my knowledge), but Quake 1 and 2 look amazing. I just configure DOS games to run when I launch from Windows, writing a custom batch file here and there to mount virtual CD drives from folders. My next project is to dual-boot it for DOS 6.22, with proper drivers and such for pure DOS mode.

    DOSBox is the iPod of gaming. Just like audiophiles go for vinyl instead of digital formats, the same goes for gaming. For convenience, I use DOSBox on my main rig, but for the real experience, it has to be on proper hardware.

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    PM sent ark. but i'm really not into emulateing anything if i can help it.

    i did put a win 98 pc together though

    win 98SE
    450 mhtz pent II
    256mb pc100 ram
    voodoo 3 AGP
    awe32 ISA sound card
    2 hd's like 60 gig i think
    dvd drive
    cd/rw drive

    i would like to make a pure DOS pc eventualy though since i have a asus MB with a 200 MMX pent II. its a nice board cause it has several ISA and PCI slots

    mostly have my C64 setup going.
    C64C modded with reset button + leather commodore keyboard cover
    1702 monitor w/ commodore S-video from the c64
    fast load cart
    commodore tape drive
    1514 disk drive and 1541-II disk drive
    joystick

    do i need anything else?

    what i need most right now is acually desks for the others. i have a amiga 500, ti-99, atari 800xl, apple IIGS, Macintosh SE, atari ST, mattel aquarious (lol) and a MSX2 all with a various amount of extras to be hooked up

    i have 2 A3000's but both are broke to some degree. at the very least i can salvage the full zip ram and latest scsi chip from them
    Last edited by Soviet Conscript; 09-29-2009 at 01:01 AM.

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    This thread is helpful, since I've been trying to build a retro PC. I'm looking to build a Windows 98 machine for Windows 9x and DOS games.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NayusDante View Post
    DOSBox is the iPod of gaming. Just like audiophiles go for vinyl instead of digital formats, the same goes for gaming. For convenience, I use DOSBox on my main rig, but for the real experience, it has to be on proper hardware.
    Bah humbug! There might be a case for that if the games of that era were in fact designed for a very particular hardware setup, but considering how many of them didn't even have proper speed throttling (and hence provided a wildly different experience depending on what hardware you used), DOSBox is just as good as anything else!

    Quote Originally Posted by NayusDante View Post
    and I'll tell you that midi synthesis coming out of mine sounds a hell of a lot better than anything emulated in DOSBox.
    That can probably be fixed. (And you'll also find no shortage of people decrying the quality of the MIDI from the AWE64.)
    Last edited by J'orfeaux; 09-29-2009 at 04:29 PM.
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    There's a few games that won't work right in DOSBox, though. Pinball... something is one of them. The colors are wrong because it took advantage of some specific hardware tricks that DOSBox is incapable of duplicating.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorpho View Post
    (And you'll also find no shortage of people decrying the quality of the MIDI from the AWE64.)
    They probably don't have the soundfonts set up right.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kitsune Sniper View Post
    There's a few games that won't work right in DOSBox
    Given any particular hardware configuration, if you look hard enough, you'll probably find a few games (or more than a few) that won't work on it.
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