A box came in the post

Anything to do with New Zealand Classic or Vintage Computing not covered in the other forums

A box came in the post

Postby xjas on Mon Mar 11, 2013 5:42 pm

Thought you guys might get a laugh out of this. Two days before I'm to leave on a work trip, my latest Trademe find shows up at my office. :mrgreen: Don't have my still-badly-needed AWE32/64/EMU8000 card but there's some neat hardware in here that will be fun to play with while I wait...

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^^ If the whole pic isn't displaying, right click & open it separately! There are seven(!) cards there.

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So here's the haul from left to right. Three generic (bargain bin) mid '90s cards. Some Aztech thing, one based on an Analog Devices Soundport chip, and another unbranded one with a real OPL3 and a "3D sound on/off" switch on the front. These pretty grubby & tough looking, and honestly, I don't really care if they don't work.

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Two ESS Audiodrives of different revisions. They look to be in reasonable shape. These could be pretty useful, they were known for their hassle-free compatibility back in the day & some of them had significantly better DACs than the contemporary Creative cards.

And here we have the real diamonds in the rough, either of these alone are worth more (*to me :wink: ) than I paid for the whole lot:
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Holy crap! A real Soundblaster 2.0 (CT1350B.) I can't remember the last time I saw one of these! Looks pretty clean for its age too, all the caps seem to be OK and I don't see anything alarming or ugly at a glance.

I don't really know what to do with this but it's still cool. :mrgreen: Well, I can run Trixter's 8088 Corruption if I ever feel the need to venture into the world of 8-bit PCs, but that's the only thing I can think of that requires the SB2.0 specifically. I love all the analog components on this thing rather than it being just a board full of ICs. Look at that ladder filter!

And finally a Soundblaster 16 (CT2830.) This one just might be old enough to avoid the infamous hanging MIDI note bug, no real way to tell until I plug it in. It's a bit grungy compared to the SB2.0 but I don't see anything that looks catastrophically wrong with it.

Anyway that's my excitement for the day. Managed to beat out no less than Mr. Berendsen for these even. Unfortunately I won't have time to try them out until after I get back, but even if none of them end up functional I'm only out the cost of a takeaway. I have high hopes though.
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby SpidersWeb on Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:11 pm

Cool stuff. That SB2 will go nicely in a genuine XT style setup, getting pretty rare these days.

I've been collecting sound boards for my PCs as well, and in doing so, I agree with your comments about the ESS cards - depending on the variant you can get pretty nice quality and decent volume drama free.

I save the Creative's for the special machines and use the ESS cards for everything else. My AWE32 from the US arrived too, destined for a 486 gaming rig.
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby SpidersWeb on Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:18 pm

I use google for ID and drivers, for the case of ESS boards (and many other clones, like that AnalogDevices card) you really just read the number on the main chip. For Creative cards, it's written on them, which makes it easier.

They are almost always SB compatible, but if they don't use jumpers, you need a configuration tool (and depending on the card, it may need to be in autoexec.bat too) to set the I/O address, IRQ, DMA etc.

(sorry if you were asking the OP, its just that I was here and thought I'd mention it :P )
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby Carcenomy on Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:33 pm

Generally it's safest to go with reference drivers anyway, especially with those ESS AudioDrives. Creatives are cake for drivers - everything is still available from Creative, even all these years later. The other ones? Not so straight forward, but generally the same procedure. The more exotic stuff is always more tricky.
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby xjas on Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:34 pm

99% of DOS stuff doesn't need drivers for Soundblaster support anyway. I'll bet that works for the ESS cards too.
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby Carcenomy on Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:26 pm

You just have to dick about with the SET BLASTER command a bit for ESS cards. The inbuilt ones in Compaqs of the era were especially shitey.
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby arjoll on Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:44 pm

SpidersWeb wrote:My AWE32 from the US arrived too, destined for a 486 gaming rig.

Are they getting rare enough to order in? I've still got my SB16/ASP and dad's AWE32, both bought new :) Traded in my SB Pro 2.0 for the SB16 though. Can't remember if I had the 286 or 386 then!
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby Carcenomy on Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:55 pm

arjoll wrote:
SpidersWeb wrote:My AWE32 from the US arrived too, destined for a 486 gaming rig.

Are they getting rare enough to order in? I've still got my SB16/ASP and dad's AWE32, both bought new :) Traded in my SB Pro 2.0 for the SB16 though. Can't remember if I had the 286 or 386 then!

Yes. I only this year managed to obtain an AWE32, was playing with it tonight while some people were heckling me for spending so much time trying to resurrect an EMU8000 card. They still sound so gloriously nice...
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby SpidersWeb on Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:00 am

arjoll wrote:
SpidersWeb wrote:My AWE32 from the US arrived too, destined for a 486 gaming rig.

Are they getting rare enough to order in? I've still got my SB16/ASP and dad's AWE32, both bought new :) Traded in my SB Pro 2.0 for the SB16 though. Can't remember if I had the 286 or 386 then!


Yep, total cost was around $50 delivered. Was inspired by the OP who was hunting for one to go out and grab one myself.
Creative cards in general are getting rarer, it seems in NZ at least, the ESS AudioDrive was the most popular that survived.

(When I say Creative cards - I am excluding the Vibra because it might as well be a cheap clone card, and the Live because it's a different gen)
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby arjoll on Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:46 pm

I know I've got a couple of other Creatives there somewhere, although the Esoniq isn't true Creative and the Vibra 4D (or possibly two) aren't highly regarded.

I've got a number of Yamaha pulls from TL Systems machines though, although some of them have had things like brackets pinched for other projects. Not sure if I have any ESS ones - I know they were as common as muck but I tended to see them more as onboard ones.
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Re: A box came in the post

Postby caluser2000 on Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:36 am

SpidersWeb wrote:
arjoll wrote:
SpidersWeb wrote:My AWE32 from the US arrived too, destined for a 486 gaming rig.

Are they getting rare enough to order in? I've still got my SB16/ASP and dad's AWE32, both bought new :) Traded in my SB Pro 2.0 for the SB16 though. Can't remember if I had the 286 or 386 then!


Yep, total cost was around $50 delivered. Was inspired by the OP who was hunting for one to go out and grab one myself.
Creative cards in general are getting rarer, it seems in NZ at least, the ESS AudioDrive was the most popular that survived.

(When I say Creative cards - I am excluding the Vibra because it might as well be a cheap clone card, and the Live because it's a different gen)
Vibras came in a variety of formats and have their place.

I've got a couple of 8-bit adlib(one out of a dead Amstrad) only sound cards and the no name sb/adlib compatible I bought for my 286 all those years ago.

Nice haul xjas
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