Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

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Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby kevman3d on Sat Jun 01, 2013 4:14 pm

Well, I gotta say that I'm extremely happy that the Atari 600XL I've had living under the house is alive and well. With everything sadly having lived in pretty damp and dank locations over the last few decades, I was feeling somewhat hesitant to turn it on.

It was taped up in the original styrofoam (I did have the box, but the dampness got to it and that was that). I got the 3 cartridges from eBay I'd ordered in less then a week (very good trader). I let it sit in the upstairs spare room over night (just to make sure it had a chance to "air out"). Plugged in this morning. Fired up - LCD TV tuned in very easily - and cartridges played just fine!

Very happy start to the long weekend, playing a couple of hours of Pacman, Digdug and Defender. I had to repair the Joystick I had found (it had the right leaf switch off-center so wasn't doing anything - manufacturers fault, not damage thankfully) but well, that's one old machine I can tick off as "in working order".

This is the FIRST time I've actually used it since I bought it about 20 years ago - simply because I had no software for it. I'm chuffed...

Now, while the wifes away I'm wondering if I can sneak the Speccy upstairs before she gets home and sees the mess? lol! :lol:

Here's a few piccies for anybody interested. Dropbox won't let me directly link to the images to embed them into the post itself, so here's the links as, well, links...

https://www.dropbox.com/s/wcl9dmvclb6lzr2/600XL_InGoodNick.jpg

https://www.dropbox.com/s/do11hfb7jnlo2lf/600XL_Bluescreen_of_life.jpg

https://www.dropbox.com/s/49qi27e4omzz2fs/Atari_Carts_from_Ebay.jpg

https://www.dropbox.com/s/qvooxs5yzpwinsp/600XL_Pacman.jpg
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby tezza on Sat Jun 01, 2013 4:37 pm

Awesome!
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby xjas on Sat Jun 01, 2013 5:03 pm

Cool, I always liked those. Never had much chance to play around with one though.
I would be tempted by one of those "Atari system + 50 games in a joystick" things if someone did one of the 400/800/600 series instead of the 2600. :mrgreen:
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby kevman3d on Sat Jun 01, 2013 5:57 pm

Interesting - while sourcing a few manuals online, apparently this model isn't supposed to have a composite output - that's something that came on the 800XL. However this model has a 5-pin DIN composite out where the original images online show a "tv switch". I guess its a later model.

I'm thinking to get the cable and therefore a better image from it on the big screen. I sense another eBay shopping excursion. 8)
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby WelshWizard on Sat Jun 08, 2013 10:01 pm

great to see another A8 alive and kicking still.
may be worth checking here for A8 books and mags etc,

http://www.atarimania.com/atari-400-800-xl-xe.html
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby kevman3d on Sat Jun 08, 2013 10:35 pm

WelshWizard wrote:http://www.atarimania.com/atari-400-800-xl-xe.html


lol! Yup - been trolling the web for all kinds of Atari stuff the last week or two. Grabbed a handful of books here - its a great archive site of everything Atari! :D

I found out on Atarisource.com that the 600XL PAL versions had the Composite output (no chroma) but the NTSC ones didn't. I still need to go purchase a cable for that - does anybody know if there is anybody in NZ that does these cables? (DIN to 3 x RCA) There's plenty on eBay, but if I can get it locally cheap enough it would be better (ie. I don't have to wait on airmail before my next pac man fix... :wink: )
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby WelshWizard on Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:18 pm

I found it cheaper to get one from Ebay, unless you make one up your self
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby kevman3d on Sun Jun 09, 2013 10:49 pm

Yeh, that's what I was thinking... I'll wait until my current watch is over first. I'm hoping to snag a cheap spare Speccy from eBay... Loads of nice retro stuff as long as shipping isn't going to cost an arm and leg. Some traders are pretty good...

EDIT (12 June 2013)
Just grabbed a new one off eBay. About NZ$22 (including the shipping) for a 6ft cable. I figure that's not going to break the bank too much. :D
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby kevman3d on Fri Aug 09, 2013 11:44 pm

Well, I don't know what's up with Canadian post. The AV cable shipped on 14th June. Its just arrived this week - 2 months later - and it was sent Air mail. God knows why, or where its been for 2 months?? :?

Nice brand new cable mind you, and works great - nice to see the machine without the TV reception ghosting noise. Of course that low-res display blown up to 42" is kinda funky as you'd expect. :lol:
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby xjas on Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:12 am

I can confirm you've received absolutely usual service from Canada Post. They claim the cheap option is "surface mail" but when it finally arrives 8+ weeks later it always has an air mail tag anyway. I'm 100% convinced they just shove the parcels in a warehouse for a month and let people stew in order to goad them into springing for their other absurdly expensive options.

I once traded parcels with a friend in Toronto when I was in Germany. We sent them on the same day using the cheapest option available in each country. He got his in THREE DAYS with no hassle, whereas the one going to me took well over a month to arrive and had cost twice as much to send. Hopeless.

Glad to see you got your cable in the end though. Sorry for ranting up your thread. :lol:
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Re: Hoorah! 20 years later and its still alive... 600XL

Postby kevman3d on Sun Aug 11, 2013 10:14 pm

lol! No worries about the ranting... Its a case of these experiences so far - UK and Holland taking around 4-5 days, Asia took 4-5 days. US takes on average 7-10 days. And now seems that Canada takes 2 months. :shock:

I felt pretty bad for the guy on eBay - he gave me an immediate refund, but he's either annoyed at me (I tried to send him a message just to follow up on the delay - but clicking "Contact the seller" created a case (not my intention). I suspect he wasn't happy about that). I've since resent him his money (which is the honest thing to do) and a message (properly this time, not a case) saying that it had arrived... 3 days later. No word - yup. Its anger, or perhaps its guilt over the mail system in Canada. :lol:

I would mention one funny thing - the slightly blurred television RF signal creates this "antialiasing" effect to the Atari's video signal. Apart from the slight ghosting, I'm thinking now perhaps its actually nicer then straight AV which has whopping crisp pixels on screen. Ok, maybe not. :roll:
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