samedi 10 mars 2012

The Keyboard

As you know, the Apple 1 was sold as a simple motherboard, no screen, no keyboard, no data storage. For the screen, you can use any TV with a video input. The monochrome video signal is compatible with all modern TVs including the latest LCDs (I'll use one little flat LCD TV with a front video input).

For the keyboard the problem is a litte more complicated. But there is a solution for every problem, right? I found one, a tricky one, but it will work! :) The solution is to use an old Apple II keyboard. The pinout of the connector is different but the signal is compatible. All I had to do was to find the keyboard, then I'll make the pinout adaptor.

I found the Apple II keyboard on internet. It's in good condition despite its age (1980) and the decoder board located on the back side is working (I tested it on an Apple II Europlus).

This is a DATANETICS ref 01-0551-0 rev B, Apple part/number 605-4117 (see pics below):

The pinout adapter is easy to make using a prorotype board (to be wired) and following the schematic below:

For information, another Apple 1 enthusiast John Calande did this operation successfully (see John Calande's blog) so this should be easy to perform. To be continued...

mercredi 1 février 2012

The Apple I PCB, The Masterpiece

The MIMEO Apple I PCB is really a masterpiece. I can't stop watching and touching it! :)

The quality of the board is outstanding. Mike worked on the PCB layout using existing hi-res pictures of originals boards. It was a huge work for him. See how he progressed on this work by reading his blog: Mike's Blog

Below are two pictures of the bare Mimeo PCB I received in the shipment (front and back sides):

All the details have been copied close to the original boards. Below is a close picture of the Apple Computer 1 logo on the board:

Update: For those who want to make an Apple I, Mike Willegal has new PCBs available for the same price: Bare Mimeo PCBs now available

lundi 30 janvier 2012

Mike Shipement Has Arrived

Today is a great day! Mike shipement has finally arrived. He prepared and sent them very quickly but the USPS and the french customs are so slow! :( ... but well, now they are here.

I appreciate the way Mike made the package: very serious and professional. All the components are in perfect condition, including the beautiful MIMEO PCB. The ICs are plugged in an antistatic foam which is a good thing. See below all the components I have now:

Below are all the rare components I got from Mike (ROMS, RAMS, Signetics chips...). They are all plastic but really vintage and in very good condition. Mike certified that they are tested and functional. I trust him 100%, he's a professional person.

The PCB is a masterpiece. It is really professionally done. CONGRATULATIONS MIKE! ... Today the project is becoming "real".

mardi 10 janvier 2012

I Got The CPU And The PIA

I found the 6502 microprocessor and the PIA (Peripheral Interface Adapter) MC6820. I got them from a local enthusiast who was selling a few vintage components on Internet.

He was selling one used Rockwell R6502P in new condition. I contacted him "Do you have two of them?", he said YES! I also asked him "Do you have a MC6820?", he responded "yes, a vintage ceramic one"... WOW!! Excellent! I like these ceramic ICs which are hard to find. Today I received them, they are beautiful. See the picture below:

To get more information on these main components, see the links below:

- - The 6502 microprocessor resource
- Wikipedia MOS 6502 page"
- Wikipedia PIA page"
- MOS 6502 Hardware Manual"
- Motorola 6820 Hardware Manual"