I am not giving up on the Amiga

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Mike Schwar » Sun, 26 Jul 1992 05:42:47



I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

But I have been really shopping for a PC in earnest these days because
CBM is not an American company anymore.  They are not selling Amigas
in America, except to those who already own Amigas.  Nor is progress
on their own proprietary technology anything to brag about.  The future
looks very dim for American Amiga users.  I am also depressed about the
lack of interesting hardware and software products that people should
be doing on the Amiga, especially Zorro III hardware and high-end user
applications.

As I have shopped for PCs, I am in awe of all the nifty goodies that
PC users can buy for little money - ethernet cards for 1/3 the price
of Amiga ones, 256 color cards for 1/8th the price of comparable
Amiga ones, CD-ROM machines that blow away CDTV (486SX with 4MB
of RAM for $1100), and aisles and aisles full of software to choose
from.  As well, there are two outstanding integrated C++ environments
with GUI builders and browsers that the Amiga stuff can't touch...

I had pretty much settled on a Sharp 6881 laptop computer, which comes
with 4MB of RAM, 120Meg hard disk, and the most beautiful 256 color
LCD display I've ever seen.  The concept of supplementing my Amiga
with a machine I could port around with me (the 6881 wieghs only
5.9 pounds) is something that is hard to resist.  But it has no
expansion slots to plug anything into...

Before that, I had been looking for a fast 486 machine with lots of
future expansion possibilities, but frankly, I was not impressed with
the kludgy hardware implementations of all the machines I looked at and
the cost wasn't very impressive either.  But today, I went to CompUSA
and I was soooo impressed with two of the 486 machines that I am likely
to get one.

Both machines are made by DELL, one being a smallish 3-slot machine
for $2300 and the other being an A2000 sized box with room for
3 or 4 internal hard disks as well as 6 slots and more.  The bigger
box costs about $250 more and comes with more, so that is likely
what I will buy...

The DELL 486D/50 is a 50MHz DDX based machine with 32768 color
(15 bits per pixel) SVGA on the motherboard (not across the piss-poor
ISA bus).  The 32768 color mode is limited by the 1Meg of RAM that
is expandable to at 640x480, but it does do 256 colors at 1024x768
and boy is it FAAAAAAAAAAAST (32 bit CPU accessing 32-bit VRAM).
The system comes with a 210Meg hard drive and 8 Megs of RAM on the
motherboard, which is expandable to 64Megs (again, this avoids the
need for slow ISA bus expansion).  As well, the floppy/hard disk
controller is also on the motherboard...  The machine does not
come with a monitor, which is just as well - I would prefer to
choose my own.  And monitors start at around $300 for 1024x768
256 color flicker free video!  $300 is about what the last 1084s
I bought cost me...  The NEC 5G 17" monitor really impressed me
as the one I'd like to save up for - such a beast is useless
to me for my A3000, unless I want to do "lores" (640x400 mode)
"lo color" graphics modes on it.

The memory on the motherboard is interleaved so it has less than
1 wait state - very much like the GVP 030 and 040 accelerator
designs.  The DELL computers have no need for the 64K expandable
to 256K cache RAM kludges that many fast PC clones come with.  All
RAM in the machine is 70ns parts (10ns faster than the FAST RAM
in my A3000).

I plan to run and write only Windows 3.1 (and up) applications
and never expect to have to use MS-DOG's command.com interface.
If I can't get a decent shell in the PD, I will write my own,
first thing.  Borland's Turbo C++ development system comes with
a windows-only version and DOS versions, so I can pick and choose
the interface I like best.  From what I've seen of the software
that comes with Turbo C++, I do not see how any Amiga compiler
system will match it without a few hundred man years' worth of
development time.

There are about 15 flavors of Unix to choose from for this
machine, and it would run them all quite well (with RAM
upgrade, naturally :)  There are also about that many
non-unix flavors of X-Windows from different vendors.
As well, an ethernet card and TCP/IP software costs about
$350.

Besides the pwoerful CD-ROM based machines, there was this
MediaVision CDPC(TM) Subsystem on display.  This cost $1199,
but was full of features...  To quote the literature:

"Fully MPC compliant, very high performance CD-ROM drive, delivers
16-bit digital audi orecording and playback to 44.1 KHz, 4-operator
FM-Synthesis, MIDI, and SoundBlaster compatibility through its
100W music amplifier and unique speaker imaging system.  These
features coupled with its multi-source analog mixer and Spectrum
Sound makes the CDPC the ultimate delivery vehicle for: multimedia
presentations, audio files, games, and even CD-AUDIO disks.  And with
its input jacks for other audio equipment, the CDPC's 100W of
music power and stereo speaker system can be used to serve as a
high quality amplifier for your DAT, cassette deck, radio tuner, etc.
A single cable connects the CDPC to your computer.  CDPC is compatible
with SOundBlaster, AdLib, Windows 3.1, ProAudioSPectrum, Thunderboard,
etc."

It records steareo 16 bit samples at 44.1KHz direct to disk.  The FM
synthesis part of this device rivals very expensive musical keyboard
instruments for quality and features.  And it is designed so you can
set your monitor and up to 88 total pounds of equipment on top of
it.  It also comes with 6 CD-ROM applications - real applications and
not games.

CompUSA has Macintosh stuff, lots of it, too.  But I can't imagine
anyone wanting a Mac after seeing that PC's provide much much more
for much much less.  The only reason the salespeople could give me
for why people would buy a Mac anymore is simplicity of use.  However,
the Mac quickly becomes a limiting factor when you get used to using
it - not good for power users on a daily basis...

Hey folks, the PC is where the money is.  The Amiga is where the soul
is....

--
Amiga programmer of: GRn, MailMinder, Budokan, Beyond Dark Castle, Dark Castle
Sega Genesis programmer of:* Tracy and Marble Madness.

1124 Fremont Ave.
Los Altos, CA 94024

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Jeff You » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 03:33:55



>I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
>PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
>the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
>and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

If you are paying thousands to PC dealer then Amiga dealer will
lose money and sale.  You are MAJOR developer too so if all
you money go to PC then now it will be very hard for Amiga
companies.  

PC is like TYRANNOSORUS REX. It eats everything else, stinks
and it is terrible neighbor.  Computer evolution got BEST
MUTATION with A500 and soon Atari Falcon will be born.

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Jerry Shekh » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 06:41:55



>I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
>PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
>the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
>and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
costs something like $16K.



--
+-------------------+-----------------------+--------------------------------+
| Jerry J. Shekhel  | Molecular Simulations | Time just fades the pages      |
| Drummers do it... | Inc.  Waltham, MA USA | in my book of memories.        |
|    ... In rhythm! |     (617) 890-2888    |              -- Guns N' Roses  |
+-------------------+-----------------------+--------------------------------+
|           ...! [ princeton mit-eddie bu sunne ] !polygen!jerry             |

+----------------------------------------------------------------------------+
 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by David Meiklejo » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 09:51:02




>>I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
>>PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
>>the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
>>and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

>Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
>board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
>are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
>costs something like $16K.

I doubt he's talking about a TIGA board - he mentioned GVP 040, so he probably
means GVP's EGS board, which is directly coupled to their accelerators.  The
32-bit interface to it can shovel video data straight from the cpu at 50 MB/s.
It comes with 8 megs of video ram, can do full 24-bit at 1600x1280, and can
draw lines 24-bits deep at 3 million pixels/sec.  Used with a 27 MIPS cpu
(040/33), you have a serious system.

Oh, and you can run Workbench this board, too, quite smoothly, with excellent
responsiveness.  I'd buy one, but they cost $$$$$.

--


Computer Systems Officer, QDPI    | Fax      : +61 70 92 3593
Mareeba, Australia                | Voice    : +61 70 92 1555

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by David Tiber » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 15:49:10



>Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
>board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
>are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
>costs something like $16K.


>| Jerry J. Shekhel  | Molecular Simulations | Time just fades the pages      |

        I agree with both of you. The Amiga does achieve the performance from
the specs I have seen (within 10% on raw data), but of course would lack
the specialized software. Which in fact may be even more felxible if
programmed on an Amiga...that is dependant on my next question of course.

        What does an Indigo have in it hardware wise? What kind of expansion
slots does it have? What OS does it run (UNIX?)?

--
      //   David Tiberio  SUNY Stony Brook 516-473-5156 AMIGA  DDD-MEN  

   \X/      Perot for President 1-516-399-2259 Long Island, New York

        PPPP  EEEEE RRRR   OOO  TTTTT    IIIII N   N      999   6666
        P   P E     R   R O   O   T        I   NN  N     9   9 6
        PPPP  EEEE  RRRR  O   O   T        I   N N N      9999 6666
        P     E     R R   O   O   T        I   N  NN         9 6   6
        P     EEEEE R  R   OOO    T      IIIII N   N     9999   666

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Mike Schwar » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 07:44:15




> >I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
> >PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
> >the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
> >and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

> If you are paying thousands to PC dealer then Amiga dealer will
> lose money and sale.  You are MAJOR developer too so if all
> you money go to PC then now it will be very hard for Amiga
> companies.

I am NOT giving up on the Amiga.  There isn't anything at the
Amiga dealer I want to buy.

Quote:> PC is like TYRANNOSORUS REX. It eats everything else, stinks
> and it is terrible neighbor.  Computer evolution got BEST
> MUTATION with A500 and soon Atari Falcon will be born.

NeXt is better than either Amiga or Atari, but suffers from the same
problem.  I want to be able to go to the store and find something
new and good OFTEN.  Amiga, Atari, NeXt don't provide this if you
buy their machines.

--
Amiga programmer of: GRn, MailMinder, Budokan, Beyond Dark Castle, Dark Castle
Sega Genesis programmer of:* Tracy and Marble Madness.

1124 Fremont Ave.
Los Altos, CA 94024

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Michael van El » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 01:24:34



Quote:>Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
>board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
>are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
>costs something like $16K.

It definitely _can_ approach the performance of an Indigo Elan with the
R3000 processor. It might not reach it (especially for speed of screen
updates) but the computational power is in the same range.
Of course, the new R4000 Indigos are different.

Regards,
--
Michael van Elst
UUCP:     universe!local-cluster!milky-way!sol!earth!uunet!unido!mpirbn!p554mve

                                "A potential Snark may lurk in every tree."

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Gerald G. Washingt » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 05:23:29




>>Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
>>board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
>>are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
>>costs something like $16K.

>    I agree with both of you. The Amiga does achieve the performance from
>the specs I have seen (within 10% on raw data), but of course would lack
>the specialized software. Which in fact may be even more felxible if
>programmed on an Amiga...that is dependant on my next question of course.

I dare say that Mike Schwartz knows a thing or two about programming.  One
might even say that he prefers to right his own applications if he has the
necessary hardware and a good compiler.  I would not presume to speak for
Mr. Schwartz though...

Quote:>    What does an Indigo have in it hardware wise? What kind of expansion
>slots does it have? What OS does it run (UNIX?)?

I am curious about the Indigo's software.  We have some 3D graphics packages
here, but I have not discovered any wordprocessors, databases, etc.

-- Gerald

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Mike Schwar » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 22:37:32




> >I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
> >PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
> >the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
> >and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

> Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
> board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
> are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
> costs something like $16K.

For straight 2-D rendering, the GVP board does push the Elan.  But for
3-D, the Elan will be hard to top for a long time to come.  I've seen
numbers like 100,000 to 1,000,000 polygons, shaded etc., thrown around
with the Elan.  The GVP board will do less than 50,000 for sure.  The
GVP literature claims the board does 3 million pixels per second in
24 bits with an 040).

But you do not understand that the GVP 24-bit board is not a TIGA
product.  It does repaint the entire screen 170 times per second
at 1024x768 24 bits.  The framebuffer alone costs $3500, and the
040 accelerator is at least $1500 more...

The GVP board also does 3200x2560 in 256 colors - if you can find
a monitor :)  That's 10.7 inches by 8.5 inches at 300 dpi :)  Seems
like you'd need to turn your monitor on its side, though...


> --
> +-------------------+-----------------------+--------------------------------+
> | Jerry J. Shekhel  | Molecular Simulations | Time just fades the pages      |
> | Drummers do it... | Inc.  Waltham, MA USA | in my book of memories.        |
> |    ... In rhythm! |     (617) 890-2888    |              -- Guns N' Roses  |
> +-------------------+-----------------------+--------------------------------+
> |           ...! [ princeton mit-eddie bu sunne ] !polygen!jerry             |

> +----------------------------------------------------------------------------+

--
Amiga programmer of: GRn, MailMinder, Budokan, Beyond Dark Castle, Dark Castle
Sega Genesis programmer of:* Tracy and Marble Madness.

1124 Fremont Ave.
Los Altos, CA 94024
 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Colin Ada » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 12:01:26




>>>At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
>>>and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).

>>Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
>>board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
>>are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
>>costs something like $16K.

>I doubt he's talking about a TIGA board - he mentioned GVP 040, so he probably
>means GVP's EGS board, which is directly coupled to their accelerators.  The
>32-bit interface to it can shovel video data straight from the cpu at 50 MB/s.
>It comes with 8 megs of video ram, can do full 24-bit at 1600x1280, and can
>draw lines 24-bits deep at 3 million pixels/sec.  Used with a 27 MIPS cpu
>(040/33), you have a serious system.

While these figures are quite good, they are not in the same league as
a high-end SG machine.  I have the specs of their graphics system in front of
me (VGXT system).

- pixel read/write/copy (with zoom/shrinking) 20MB/sec
- renders spheres at 10 MB/sec
- clears screen at 800 MB/sec
- texture mapping (highest quality) 50 MB/sec

These beasts have 20 pixel processors running in parallel.  If that isn't
enough you can buy a system with 40 processors.  The SG systems also
have a heap of features to remove perspective distortion and hardware
anti-aliasing.  Unfortunately I don't have the price of this system,
but naturally it would be very expensive.

Quote:>Oh, and you can run Workbench this board, too, quite smoothly, with excellent
>responsiveness.  I'd buy one, but they cost $$$$$.

I'd buy one too.

--
Colin Adams       Honours Student - James Cook University of North Queensland
              "Friends come and go, but enemies accumulate."

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Colin Ada » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 12:07:52



Quote:>It definitely _can_ approach the performance of an Indigo Elan with the
>R3000 processor. It might not reach it (especially for speed of screen
>updates) but the computational power is in the same range.
>Of course, the new R4000 Indigos are different.

I should have mentioned that the figures I posted are for the R4000 systems.
The guys from SG said the R3000 systems were being phased out.

Quote:>Michael van Elst

--
Colin Adams       Honours Student - James Cook University of North Queensland
              "Friends come and go, but enemies accumulate."
 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by David Tiber » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 15:03:15




>>        I agree with both of you. The Amiga does achieve the performance from
>>the specs I have seen (within 10% on raw data), but of course would lack
>>the specialized software. Which in fact may be even more felxible if
>>programmed on an Amiga...that is dependant on my next question of course.

>I dare say that Mike Schwartz knows a thing or two about programming.  One
>might even say that he prefers to right his own applications if he has the
>necessary hardware and a good compiler.  I would not presume to speak for
>Mr. Schwartz though...
>-- Gerald

        What I meant was that I have more fun using my Amiga in general than
using any UNIX workstation. The Amiga has more interesting features that the
UNIX machines don't. Such as multiple OSes multitasking at the same time,
and multiple screens. Plus, many UNIX programs are very old and outdated.
I hate using JOVE on the workstations. And I hate the HP mice too.

--
      //   David Tiberio  SUNY Stony Brook 516-473-5156 AMIGA  DDD-MEN  

   \X/      Perot for President 1-516-399-2259 Long Island, New York

        PPPP  EEEEE RRRR   OOO  TTTTT    IIIII N   N      999   6666
        P   P E     R   R O   O   T        I   NN  N     9   9 6
        PPPP  EEEE  RRRR  O   O   T        I   N N N      9999 6666
        P     E     R R   O   O   T        I   N  NN         9 6   6
        P     EEEEE R  R   OOO    T      IIIII N   N     9999   666

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Mike Schwar » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 16:35:43





> >>Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
> >>board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
> >>are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
> >>costs something like $16K.

> >       I agree with both of you. The Amiga does achieve the performance from
> >the specs I have seen (within 10% on raw data), but of course would lack
> >the specialized software. Which in fact may be even more felxible if
> >programmed on an Amiga...that is dependant on my next question of course.

> I dare say that Mike Schwartz knows a thing or two about programming.  One
> might even say that he prefers to right his own applications if he has the
> necessary hardware and a good compiler.  I would not presume to speak for
> Mr. Schwartz though...

Speaking for myself, I would easily be able to program the PC with SVGA
or the Amiga with the GVP board.  However, I don't want to invent every
piece of software to run on these boards - my time is limited to what one
(or two or three, tops :) programmers can do in a lifetime.  I would much
rather buy an off-the-shelf 24-bit paint program than write one of my
own...

Quote:> >       What does an Indigo have in it hardware wise? What kind of expansion
> >slots does it have? What OS does it run (UNIX?)?

> I am curious about the Indigo's software.  We have some 3D graphics packages
> here, but I have not discovered any wordprocessors, databases, etc.

I in no way intend to slam anything SGI has ever built.  Other than Amiga
Corp. and to a lesser extent CBM, SGI has been the most innovative systems
designers around.  I see the SGI as the Amiga's big brother in soooo many
ways - almost proprietary OS, fast animations on screen, high quality
audio builtin, high performance bus architecture, etc.  The SGI machines
are a BIG step up from Amiga, though.  24-bit color and 16-bit audio is
something that stock Amigas don't do...

As for Apps, the Indigo has plenty to choose from, albeit they are very
expensive.  I do not know for sure if FrameMaker exists for the SGI, but
if it is, you won't find a better desktop publisher/word processor on
any platform - especially the Mac (which claims this kind of app as
a strength).  FrameMaker is available on the Mac in a crippled/slimmed
down version of what the X version does...

Quote:> -- Gerald

--
Amiga programmer of: GRn, MailMinder, Budokan, Beyond Dark Castle, Dark Castle
Sega Genesis programmer of:* Tracy and Marble Madness.

1124 Fremont Ave.
Los Altos, CA 94024
 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Jarkko Lindbl » Mon, 27 Jul 1992 20:01:16



: >
: >I for one am not giving up on my Amiga.  I have been pricing $4K and up
: >PC systems, and in this price range, the Amiga 3000 with 040 board is
: >the price/performance leader.  At $6K, the Amiga 2000 with GVP 040
: >and 24-bit board pushes systems at 4x the cost (i.e. SGI Elan).
: >
:
: Mike, if you think that an Amiga with an accelerator and a 24-bit TIGA
: board can even begin to approach the performance of an Indigo Elan, you
: are badly disillusioned.  On the other hand, that Elan graphics board alone
: costs something like $16K.

Did Mike mention TIGA? To me it seems that he meant GVP's 040
accelerator _and_ GVP's EGS-board (which indeed is from another planet
when compared to TIGAs).

--
Jarkko Lindblad

 
 
 

I am not giving up on the Amiga

Post by Michael van El » Tue, 28 Jul 1992 19:07:53



Quote:>I should have mentioned that the figures I posted are for the R4000 systems.
>The guys from SG said the R3000 systems were being phased out.

I have read that. However, the R3000 systems are still sold _and_ the
R4000 systems more expensive.

Regards,
--
Michael van Elst
UUCP:     universe!local-cluster!milky-way!sol!earth!uunet!unido!mpirbn!p554mve

                                "A potential Snark may lurk in every tree."

 
 
 

1. I am truly sorry that I am not as bright as most others...

With amiga's. everyone here seems to know a lot abot them, and I was
wondering, now that I know where to get the software, how to GET IT TO
WORK! I thought about master/slaving the two, would I use the serial port,
or the paralell? It's an amiga 500. I dont know the specs, because so far
I've just been really confused. An ibm emulator would let me put in IBM
disks, and have it be able to read them? Anyway, if I master/slave can I
transmit data freely? Would it be possible? Do I need to bo online in some
way? thanks,
                           rob

2. F.S.: Sparc2 cpu $100

3. I am giving up on the Amiga

4. irDA driver for NT

5. Not giving up on the Amiga.

6. XBOX savegame backup to computer

7. Why not give it a try?

8. Tandy 100/ NEC PC-8201 tecnhical reference ,manual wanted.

9. NP_ExitCode not called - what gives?

10. Give me. Don't give me.

11. I am NOT a douchebag

12. I am not here