Something Special This Way Comes

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RWAP
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Something Special This Way Comes

Postby RWAP » Mon Jan 31, 2011 11:20 pm

I am working on something special hardware wise which is QL related.

It is an old long forgotten favourite..... Nearly finished...

Don't get your hopes up too much - it is not a new expansion interface or similar, but as with the best, it will be available in 28 days....


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vanpeebles
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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby vanpeebles » Tue Feb 01, 2011 8:42 am

:o More clues! Is it a low voltage PSU?


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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby RWAP » Tue Feb 01, 2011 11:54 am

vanpeebles wrote::o More clues! Is it a low voltage PSU?


Well it's sleek and its black....

Unfortunately it won't revolutionise the QL market, but it will make one Sinclair collector very happy...


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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby vanpeebles » Tue Feb 01, 2011 12:07 pm

Can we preorder? More clues!


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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby RWAP » Tue Feb 01, 2011 12:23 pm

Pre-ordering is not an option as it is probably a one of a kind !

It will be listed on SellMyRetro.com in the next few days


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vanpeebles
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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby vanpeebles » Tue Feb 01, 2011 12:29 pm

:o excited


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vanpeebles
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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby vanpeebles » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:47 am

:shock: *Waits for news*


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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby RWAP » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:04 pm

Not much longer to wait.

Could it be http://www.sellmyretro.com/offer/detail ... Mouse-1372

or maybe:
http://www.sellmyretro.com/offer/detail ... rface-1369

Hmm - it would have to be rarer than either of those.....


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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby RWAP » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:28 pm

Sorry if you are disappointed, it is nothing new, just something that was discarded a long long time ago in the QL's history (and probably Sinclair thought they had put to bed for good).

We have now managed to resurrect an early example of the Sinclair QL home computer as it was first unveiled to the expectant media, complete with the slow v1 Psion software and the infamous Dongle (or Kludge) which contained one third of the QL's operating system.

In 26 years of being involved with the QL, this is the first example we have ever come across and we have managed to resurrect it, complete with early microdrive units and the AH operating system and very early First Edition manual (predates the First Edition dated 6/84).

All of these machines were sent back to Sinclair for upgrades (to replace the operating system with one needing two ROM chips fitted internally, plus various hardware modifications to make the QL more reliable and even useable!).

We even found one of the three EPROM chips required for the PM version of QDOS. Unfortunately, the other two chips (and their code) are missing.

PM was one of the earliest versions of QDOS (pre-release).

It was followed by FB which may never have left the factory - we know that Psion had to alter their boot programs to cope with the difference in the AT command in the FB ROM compared to later QL ROMs (they didn't bother checking for the earlier PM ROM). No-one else had to make this change or ever use it, so it looks as though by the time the public got their hands on the QL, the operating system was at least AH (which was soon followed by JM, JS and MG ROMs).

The biggest surprise to us when putting this machine back together, was the fact that it seems to work quite well, despite the Kludge and lack of modifications to the motherboard / ZX8302 chip etc. The microdrive units both seem reliable, and if anything, they are much quicker at formatting microdrive cartridges than the later models, although they only seem to be able to format in the region of 210/212 sectors (compared to later ones which could do 222/225 on average, up to 229/231 sectors on one QL we have here).

This could be a unique QL and it is unlikely any other Sinclair collector will have one like it in their collection (we would love to find other examples of this and maybe find the missing PM ROM code at some stage).

Sorry for the plug, but we are traders, so we have therefore decided to list it on SellMyRetro.com - the trading site for retro computers.


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vanpeebles
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Re: Something Special This Way Comes

Postby vanpeebles » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:33 pm

Impressive stuff! I'll have to check my manuals at home out of interest.



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