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Vintage Computers Any vintage computer systems, calculators, video games etc., but with an emphasis on 1980s and earlier equipment.

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Old 20th Jun 2020, 8:15 am   #581
SiriusHardware
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Location: Newcastle, Tyne and Wear, UK.
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Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

When I was a young electronics hobbyist in the late seventies my dad, like most dads at the time, used to go out to the pub every night and as a little part of that ritual, he would bring back three packets of Tudor crisps, one for my mother, one for me and one for the dog. Like most people reading the electronics hobby press I had seen those beautifully illustrated 'woodcut' style adverts for the MK14 and decided I had to have one, but 39.95 was quite a lot of money for someone still at school so I negotiated a deal: Instead of the crisps, my dad would give me the price of the crisps which I would put in a jar.

I kept this up for weeks on end until I had more than half of the amount saved up and then my parents relented and gave me the rest, although they still couldn't see why I would want a 'computer' or what I would do with it. I assuaged my parents' doubts by getting the machine to do all sorts of impressive things, although some - like making it play 'God Save The Queen' - came straight from the manual. I later edited the 'song data' to play several other tunes as well. That's how most of us learned, by entering and improving / modifying software from manuals and other sources.

This probably explains why I still have it although I have acquired a few machines since - it took an effort to acquire it, which made it harder to consider discarding it. I've also only changed address once since I acquired it, and that seems to have been a pivotal point at which many former MK14 owners lost theirs, discarded in a house move and later regretted, so I'm impressed that Mark chose to include his MK14 - not even his originally - in the relatively small number of items he must have been able to take to Canada with him.

My original machine's 8154 also came from Tandy (Shields Road, Byker) in the 'Archer' blister pack with the folded data sheet, which I was looking at just last night.

My MK14 is issue II so it really is a museum piece as I can't consider doing any of the mods which would bring it up to to spec, so no extra RAM beyond the 640 bytes it already has, no connections for the VDU, the Single Step hardware patch was removed during a renovation phase in the late noughties as it made the PCB look untidy. That's why I'm grateful to those individuals who have produced replica PCBs, especially to Slothie whose 'issue VI' is the most practical and functional of the lot. If I break a replica it's not the end of the world although I am already too fond of my issue VI to be able to consider doing anything drastic to it.

Although we didn't really mean it to turn out this way this 'Vintage Computing' section of the UKVRR site has become a kind of unofficial repository for all kinds of things MK14, there are quite a few MK14 threads, many now closed, which are stuffed with all sorts of interesting links, information, files and so on, in no small part thanks to Tim who is an obsessive researcher sans pareil when it comes to anything he takes an interest in.
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Old 24th Jun 2020, 9:40 pm   #582
philoupat83
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Location: Toulon, France
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Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

Hello
thank you my friends received .
soon I will be able to assemble this famous mk14 v6 of slothie and add my vdu to it
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Old 27th Jun 2020, 1:43 pm   #583
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

I am glad you received it OK Phil - the (labelled) additional connections on the rear edge connector of the V6 make it much easier to connect a VDU.
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Old 28th Jun 2020, 11:08 am   #584
Timbucus
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Location: Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, UK.
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Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

Yes good news Phil that it arrived safe - look forward to seeing you on the VDU thread.

I have to say Sirius a great story on your MK14 origin. I also have fond memories of Tandy - I recently found a 1980s catalog which contained the speakers I bought from there for my first stereo I built.

It is this human side of the forum around these machines that makes it so important that we preserve and index this information. Appreciate the praise on my obsessive research - very similar to the headmaster at my old school and my dad who pretty much added the caveat "If only he was interested in the things that he needed to be..." and of course I have often thought it should have "..or will make him rich."
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Old Yesterday, 6:51 pm   #585
DeltaAlpha52
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Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Crawley, West Sussex, UK.
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Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slothie View Post
Well.when I get my stuff back I'll have a number of spare 1.2 boards if someone wants one to hack.
Hi
I saw the MK14 board on the ebay and that brought me back again to this thread. If you have one of the 1.2 boards I'd love to have one to progress on from my current replica from Martin. The extending the signals to the end of the board looks great.
Thanks
David
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Old Yesterday, 7:06 pm   #586
Slothie
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Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

Quote:
Originally Posted by DeltaAlpha52 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slothie View Post
Well.when I get my stuff back I'll have a number of spare 1.2 boards if someone wants one to hack.
Hi
I saw the MK14 board on the ebay and that brought me back again to this thread. If you have one of the 1.2 boards I'd love to have one to progress on from my current replica from Martin. The extending the signals to the end of the board looks great.
Thanks
David
Well all my stuff is still in storage but I may be able to poke around in a few weeks time once I can get to the storage if I am well enough for the walk! I'll message you of one comes up.
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Old Yesterday, 9:20 pm   #587
DeltaAlpha52
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Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Crawley, West Sussex, UK.
Posts: 23
Default Re: MK14 schematic revisions

Thanks for responding - sorry to hear you are unwell - I've not been following this thread for a while ( been getting other ancient hardware working ). But getting the old stuff out of the loft has been a godsend during this lock down. We have been shielding so not really left the house since March. If you do manage to find one that would be wonderful but I fully understand if not.

Hope you get better soon and are able to "work" on these ancient systems

Take care
David
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