Greetings From Yorkshire

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Haemogoblin
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Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby Haemogoblin » Sun May 22, 2016 9:17 pm

Hello there


I've recently became the proud owner of a Sinclair QL with a 512k memory addon, 3.5" floppy drive and black cub monitor. I've a ton of micro drive tapes, most of which really could do with their pads replacing. But its mostly business software (shock horror) or email based tools for the modem that came with the machine.

Currently reading up on how I can best get software to floppy from my windows laptop :)


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vanpeebles
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby vanpeebles » Sun May 22, 2016 9:53 pm

Ey up! A warm welcome to the forum :D What are you plans for using the QL? :)


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dilwyn
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby dilwyn » Sun May 22, 2016 10:32 pm

Haemogoblin wrote:Hello there


I've recently became the proud owner of a Sinclair QL with a 512k memory addon, 3.5" floppy drive and black cub monitor. I've a ton of micro drive tapes, most of which really could do with their pads replacing. But its mostly business software (shock horror) or email based tools for the modem that came with the machine.

Currently reading up on how I can best get software to floppy from my windows laptop :)

Welcome! Rich Mellor and Simone Voltolini (both on this Forum) are doing their best to preserve copies of as many QL programs as possible. Simone has done a lot of replacing felt pads and recovering software from such microdrive cartridges. Perhaps preparing a list of the software might help them both check if there's anything they haven't already got preserved.

As for getting software from your Windows system to floppy disk, probably the easiest way is to get the QPC2 emulator (the full version of which is now free from http://www.kilgus.net) and a USB floppy drive for the laptop - QPC2 will be able to read and write both QL and DOS format floppy disks.

Don't know if this is what you're reading already - there's a page on my site about file transfer http://www.dilwyn.me.uk/gen/pcqlxfer/index.html. VERY IMPORTANT: do NOT unzip executable QL programs in Windows, move them to QL and use QDOS Unzip which is the only one able to preserve the file headers. If you haven't got a copy of QDOS Unzip, there's a version on my website saved as a BASIC program of all things - just transfer that to a QL floppy, run it on a QL and it will build a copy of QL Unzip for you. http://www.dilwyn.me.uk/arch/index.html under Job2Bas (QL BASIC programs can safely be unzipped in Windows, unlike programs you start with EXEC).


Dilwyn
All things QL: see www.dilwyn.me.uk
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Haemogoblin
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby Haemogoblin » Sun May 22, 2016 11:35 pm

Hi guys

Thanks for the advice, right now I'm reading up on your site about getting files to floppy http://www.dilwyn.me.uk/gen/pcqlxfer/index.html#pc

I have an old dell P3 running XP, which i thought might run the programs at a pinch. Being as they were written for 98 and NT, I was ruling out any chance of them working on Windows 7.

I will get you a list typed out of the software asap. From what I can gather the previous owner used the QL for communicating with people via modem, as I've several email, mailing list related titles, not to mention a modem.

What do I plan to do with it? Good question, what CAN you do with a QL? I understand so far that you can or could get an SD card adaptor to replace one of the micro drives. Currently this is my first dabble with the medium and I can't say I'm thrilled :P But then it is 30 years old, so i shouldn't be too harsh. I think I'd like to at least have a play around with it. The QL has always been a mystery to me, much likt the Plus 3's. I was always tape man in the 8 bit era, only made the move to floppy when I got an Amiga 500+

Here is a picture of the haul
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Xn5_PVD8QHWlk7UAl4nDZAaVqzHwF8u48w/view?usp=sharing

I'm mostly a Spectrum user by nature, but my friend asked me if I'd be interested in two QL's and a monitor. What I got was a rediculous amount of stuff which I'm sorting through.


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vanpeebles
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby vanpeebles » Mon May 23, 2016 7:53 am

Eeee it's got a fancy keyboard :) That's a nice haul of goodies!


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Haemogoblin
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby Haemogoblin » Mon May 23, 2016 8:25 am

The haul came with two QL's, one working and one not. I've since parted out the none working one to a friend. As he's a big Sinclair fan like myself, but not overly sure on the QL.

I do have a question about these machines. I understand you can upgrade the roms, what is the benefit of doing so? Also I keep reading about mice and pointers. Does the QL have some sort of GUI interface?


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dilwyn
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby dilwyn » Mon May 23, 2016 10:54 am


The printer interface lead is a Miracle Centronics Printer interface, which plugs into serial port and connects to a printer with a parallel port. Miracle produced several versions of this, including one version for a Spectrum too. I think this version in the shiny black box was their second or third QL version. As far as the user is concerned, they're all the same, the main difference being box size. The last version they made was small enough to fit in the shell of a centronics parallel connector itself.

The keyboard was made by Schön. It replaced the original QL keyboard and usually needed a replacement for the 8049 second processor chip in the QL to combat "key bounce". There were two versions of that chip, the one Schön usually supplied knackered input on one of the serial ports. Also, where the keyboard was supplied with a wire connector to the circuit board (as opposed to the flat sinclair membrane), these were wider than the sinclair ones and forced open the connections on the circuit board, making it hard to get an original keyboard to work if you chose to put the original keyboard back.

Can't quite make out what the item between the QL and disk drive might be.

Also not quite sure what the silver peripheral top left of the photo might be... <grin>

I'm sure you'll have fun time going through all this - it's half the fun of a QL, collecting all the software and bits and pieces.


Dilwyn
All things QL: see www.dilwyn.me.uk
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dilwyn
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby dilwyn » Mon May 23, 2016 10:56 am

Haemogoblin wrote:The haul came with two QL's, one working and one not. I've since parted out the none working one to a friend. As he's a big Sinclair fan like myself, but not overly sure on the QL.

I do have a question about these machines. I understand you can upgrade the roms, what is the benefit of doing so? Also I keep reading about mice and pointers. Does the QL have some sort of GUI interface?

If you don't mind, I'll post a reply to this in another part of the Forum, just to avoid cluttering up the Welcome area too much.


Dilwyn
All things QL: see www.dilwyn.me.uk
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Haemogoblin
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Re: Greetings From Yorkshire

Postby Haemogoblin » Mon May 23, 2016 1:36 pm

no problem, would you like me to start the thread?



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