Category Archives: Apple II

Half-height slim-floppy drives:

top-front_s
Got these from a friend as a trade. He had saved these from the 80’s and not used them ever since. These were once used in a local textile factory close by his home. 

bottom_s
Bottom-view. Just different color from the bottom. The mechanism looks the same on both however they do sound totally different when reading the floppy.

cec-e_with_two_drives_s
I wanted these as the original Apple II disk drive, Disk II-drive didn’t boot for some reason with the CEC-E (it did with CEC-I). Disk II-drive did power up, but it would not boot or read anything from it. These drives work just fine (as i thought) and they are quite quiet as well. And they do look nice with the clone that CEC-E certainly is.

cec-e_with_one_drive_saxxon_s2
Zaxxon time! The colors look bit off. I think some component on the board is having issues as the picture starts to degrade after few minutes when the CEC-E is been turned on untill it’s totally unreadable mess. An another project then with another time…..

FinApple 2018 (c)
Apple II Forever.

A2heaven products for the summer.. coming soon!

a2heaven_logo

FastChip //c

fc2c_s
This summer you’ll be able to ACCELERATE your Apple //c up to 16.6MHz!
Easy to install, easy to adjust speed, all you ever need for your Apple //c. If it would be faster, it would be I-N-S-A-N-E.

RamWorks III VGA add-on-card (PAL/NTSC)

all_top_s
RamWorks III VGA add-on card is very handy add-on card to your Applied Engineering (or equilevant) RamWorks III card.
This add-on board enables you to use VGA-monitors with your Apple //e (PAL or NTSC) and save up an slot compared to other
VGA-solutions. There’s never too many slots!

Color modes available are as of:
1 – Colour
2 – Colour Alternative
3 – Shades of Green
4 – Shades of White
5 – Mono – Green
6 – Mono – White
7 – Mono – Amber
8 – Mono – Green (Bold)
9 – Mono – White (Bold)
10 – Mono – Amber (Bold)

 

MegaAudio

ma_s
Mega Audio is audio card for your Apple II that holds inside several audio cards itself. It supports emulation of :
2 * MockingBoards , 1 * ALF , 4x * SAM cards .

 

ALL THESE ARE SOON AVAILABLE AT : https://www.a2heaven.com/webshop

Apple II and CP/M:

digital_research
CP/M being very popular Operating system back in the 70’s and early 80’s, lots of CP/M (soft) cards were made for the Apple II as well. One of the first ones was released by Microsoft, called “Z-80 Softcard” in 1980 and being first hardware product released by Microsoft. That card then was obiously cloned by Taiwanese and other manufacturers.

Wikipedia:
The Z-80 SoftCard is a plug-in coprocessor card developed by Microsoft to turn the Apple II personal computer into a CP/M system based upon the Zilog Z80 CPU. Becoming the most popular CP/M platform and Microsoft’s top revenue source for 1980, it was eventually renamed the Microsoft SoftCard and was succeeded by Microsoft’s Premium Softcard IIe for the Apple IIe.

Introduced in 1980 as Microsoft’s first hardware product, and bundled with the Microsoft BASIC programming language, the Z-80 SoftCard is a coprocessor card enabling the Apple II to run the Digital Research CP/M operating system, which was the industry-standard operating system for running business software. This gives Apple II users access to many more business applications, including compilers and interpreters for several high-level languages. CP/M, one of the earliest cross-platform operating systems, is easily adaptable to a wide range of auxiliary chips and peripheral hardware, but it requires an Intel 8080-compatible CPU, which the Zilog Z80 is, but which the Apple’s CPU, the MOS Technology 6502, is not. The SoftCard has a Zilog Z80 CPU plus some 74LS00 series TTL chips to adapt that processor’s bus to the Apple bus.

 Recent additions:my_cards_s
I came across few interesting cards made by Applied Engineering (Z-80 Plus) and Personal Computer Products Inc. (APPLI-CARD) and those run either 4 or 6mhz. These are the high-quality cards and not just plain clones.

setof_s
I think this picture of the set was from ebay:

floppy_s
Software:

box_s
Box of the set:

Applied Engineering Z-80 Plus (Z80 @ 4mHz)
http://ae.applearchives.com/all_apple_iis/z-80_plus/z-80_plus_brochure.pdf

Personal Computer Products Inc. APPLI-CARD (Z80 @ 4mhz or 6mhz)
http://apple2online.com/web_documents/appli-card_manual.pdf
http://apple2online.com/web_documents/pcpi_mini_manual.pdf

CP/M by Digital Research:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CP/M

FinApple (c) 2018.
Apple ][ forever.

Apple II-software tapes

Thanks to Marko for these Apple II tape donations. These were first Apple II software tapes released by Apple Computer Inc. , in my collection.

COLOR DEMOSOFT / LITTLE BRICK OUT
600-2023-00
1979

ALIGNMENT TEST TONE / RENUMBER/APPEND
600-2024-00
1979

These are naturally digitized and preserved by the great Antoine Vignau of Brutal Deluxe at :
http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/projects/cassettes/apple/

 

apple_ii_software_tapes_s

FinApple 2018 (c)
Apple ][ forever.

From Belgium with Floppies

“Floppies! Floppies! Let there be FLOPPIES.”

Bryan Bogaert sent these floppies to be preserved. One never knows what there is to be found.

box_s

What software were used:
-As most of the disks were not originals, not protected ones, i just used CFFA3000 to read the disk images (.dsk) out of the floppies. That’s the most easy/realible way to get the images read quick. For more difficult ones, or slightly protected ones, ADTPro could be used to read the .nib file, but currently i don’t have ethernet based network setup in my mancave/hobby/work-room so i had to skip that in this moment.

floppies_around_s

Any intersting finds?
Lots of basic stuff. Cracked game collections (i’m specially interested finding software cracked by European, less known, groups or persons), AppleWorks, DOS-masters -the basic stuff really.

ghostbusters_crack_screen
Cracked by some Dutch group/person:

itt_floppy_sBut atleast something very interesting, i found software made for the Apple ][ clone, ITT 2020!
Basic-Couse and some financing products labeled as “Bell Telephone Mfg. Co. Retail Management Program – Verkoop en Facturatie and Stock -en Klantenbeheer”. There were versions 1.0, 2.0 and 2.1 but all i could find were version 2.0 and 2.1. Those disks were really in bad shape, the mylar surface was badly grooved in few tracks. Cleaning did not help on that.

passported_sFew i could read with the Passport by 4am and it revealed that those were actually protected with DOS3.3P.

Also found some Dutch PD-collections:
-Apple Gebruikersgroep Amsterdam : Het Diskschift
-Software Bibliotheek Stichting Apple 2 Support
-IAC Klok-series

Images that did not contain any personal data, were uploaded to archive.org and asimov.

FinApple 2018
Apple ][ forever.

Suncom TAC1+ analog joystick controller

I rarely see anything Apple II-releated sold in this side of the world (i.e. Finland) so i just had to get one more, joystick. This time it was TAC1+ made by Suncom that works with :
Apple IIe, IIc, IIgs and compatibles “plug A”
IBM PC, XT, AT, PS2 and compatibles “plug D”

fb_img_15129325997663
The handle does look odd and not so comfortable at first but it actually is quite easy going and lightweight. Pretty accurate as well. It’ll just need some cleaning.

fb_img_15129325974003In bottom there’s the switch between IBM PC and Apple II.

1
It came with small User’s Guide.

2

 

FinApple 2017 (c)
Apple ][ forever.

A little bit about: Preserving Apple II casette-based software:

Apple and other publishers, released software on c-casette tapes since 1977 to early 1980’s
The c-casette tape was the only way to save your data until the Disk II became available in June 1978 ($495). And of course, it took time when it became dominant format for saving data on your Apple ][.

casette_2_s
Recently i obtained some Apple ][ software tapes that did require preservation. All others
but “Mimic” were already preserved by Antoine Vignau of the great Brutaldeluxe,
http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr so i took the task to preserve the “Mimic”-casette release. To me, this was first ever (original) casette software for the Apple ][, so this was all “new” to me even i knew the process more or less.

Last time i’ve copied software tapes was back in mid 80’s when i realized i could actually copy
the software tapes with double-deck c-casette players. That was start of something.. wonderfull (and brought to me lots of new friends).

These came with the box (rather rare to happen thesedays) so i will scan them and the manuals as well and they’ll appear on Antoine’s collection later on.

software_tapes_s
Instant Software-releases from 1979:
-Math Tutor I 20k (0073A)
-Sahara Warriors: Commando, French Foreigh Legion 8k (0080A)
-Mimic 24k (0025A)
-Manual for : Math Fun 6 32k (0160AD)

Also additional tape came with these, it seems to have Star Trek game on it which i had to preserve as well. It was one of these “just in case” situations. Save everything, analyze later.

What is required in order to preserve the software tapes?
-Casette deck/player
-Audio cable
-Audacity -software
-Ciderpress -software

The setup:casettedeck_s
Nothing odd or difficult. Connecting the casette-deck to your computer, in this case, Pioneer CT-F650, i obtained from a colleque at work to laptop (Macbook Pro) with suitable cables (2*RCA->minijac). See that the possible DOLBY-setting is OFF.

Reading:
-Using Audacity (WAV, 22kHz, 8-bit mono) to read the casette (or the data off it if you know excatly how much there is) to single, non-compressed .wav file. Reading “too much” (i.e. whole side of the casette) doesnt matter.

We are going to save the .wav file(s) as master/original file, but also, convert the .wav back to file-format in order to keep it (and it’s easier to be used) in DOS 3.2 or DOS 3.3 disk image.

Converting (to disk image):import-files-from-wav_2
Create empty DOS 3.2/3.3 -disk image, and using Ciderpress, import the files from the .wav file to the  disk image. Import : actions > import file from WAV, choose the file and press >IMPORT<

import-files-from-wav_3
You can setup when importing the files the file-name, if it’s Binary, aAplesoft or Integer BASIC.
-Mimic loader
-Mimic program

instant_software_presents_sLoading program:

mimic_start_screen_s
Mimic-menu:

mimic_game_screen_s
Mimic-the game:


Some good ideas:

-Do fast forward the tape back and forth few times if the tape have not been used for long time. The tape might be stuck due heat and lack of usage.

 

Links:
Collection of Apple II tape software:
http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/projects/cassettes/index.html

By Apple: The format of data on the tape
http://support.apple.com/kb/TA40730

By Apple: Read and write routines from the monitor
http://support.apple.com/kb/TA40737

 

FinApple 2017 (c)
Apple ][ forever
http://kasettilamerit.fi

Special thanks to Antoine Vignau of Brutaldeluxe.fi

 

Roadtrip: Swedish Apple’s

It all begins when i was contacted by Peter Fuks, who was an Chairman of the AUG (Apple User’s Group Sweden) in 1999-2002.

http://A2central.com
Apple User Group of Sweden – formed in the early 1980s, the AUG still has 30-35 enthusiastic members. The group usually meets twice a year in Stockholm and Gothenburg, usually 5-10 people each, and has an extensive software library, ”mostly older games on 5.25? disks. To join the group, the fee is 150 Swedish crowns (US $10) per year. For more information, visit the group’s web site at http://www.appleusergroup.org.

So Peter offered some Apple ][ material he needed to dispose due need of space and lack of time as well other hobbies taking time when he got retired and he knew i could preserve the software and if there were, anything else, paper material for the other users and for the future.

I was very honored and we figured out the dates as i’d need to travel from Finland to Sweden with ferry and take my car with me. It took some months to find the suitable dates and i booked the tickets to Viking Line-ferry that goes from Helsinki to Stockholm. It’s about 16.5 hour per side with the boat so it would take about two days for the trip in total.

Leaving: “It was Roadtrip time!”on_boat_s
So it was roadtrip time! My friend Marko joined me to the trip and i picked him from train station and we headed to the ferry. I booked the tickets so i could drive the car in the boat first, and get out, first. That would save time and nerves.

leaving_boat_inside_s
Lots of cars and trucks use the ferries to get over the sea to Sweden.

Arriving: “Så här är vi i sverige”
Arriving at 10:00 to Sweden. Weather was nice but slightly clowdy. Nice and dry compared to Finland when we left..

Driving to: “On our way to Järfälla”
Järfälla is about 20km away from downtown Stockholm to north-west so it’s rather easy task to drive there and back. There’s not that much time as the boat leaves back in afternoon but enough for quick round trip there. Or so we thought.. My GPS-navigator is about 10 years old that was however ok, it did work out well. Just IF i would have believed the route it offered.. I tried to use my own very easy, very fast route that i could now however track from the GPS-device itself…  so we drove some 15km to wrong direction first then i started to actually pay attention to the GPS and changed the route… and we found the place. Rather easily in the end 🙂

At Peter’s home: “Meeting Peter”
jorma_peter_marko_s
Me, Peter and Marko:

Peter and his wife, Gunnel, were waiting. So we drinked some coffee, talked about the tech in general (Peter collects old radios and those are so beautiful!) and the loaded up the car. We were sadly bit on a tight schedule so there were not so much time i was hoping. Peter and Gunnel were as nice people as you could think of.

Peter’s Computers:
peter_fuks_s

Peter have/have had, lots of Apple ][ computers over the years. He had kept two i think, of Apple //e’s. The main unit he had was really COOL hacked one with just motherboard inside, external keyboard, HDD, 5.25″ and 3.5″ drives with powersupply in another external case!
He had Slotbuster, Phasor cards on his board among PC Transporter setup. What an great period perfect hack-unit!

peters_apple_iie_s
Inside of the Peter’s Apple //e with SlotBuster-card.

 

Leaving: “Heading back to Stockholm”
apple_ii_from_sweden_packed_s
Car packed with Apple ][-goodies..

leaving_sweden_s

Getting back to the ferry thru downtown Stockholm was easier than i tought. The GPS took us thru the oldtown of the Stockholm and thru the  construction area of Slussen, but the route was so FAST. We got in time to the ferry and even had to wait quite a bit to get in.

getting_into_ferry_s
Waiting to drive the car inside the ferry at Stockholm harbor.

At home:
Roadtrip was over! Took about 40 hours for the total trip or so.

Of cos when getting home, i unloaded the material to my work/hobby/mancave-room but only few hours later, had time to start looking into them (i was exicited of cos).

What were there?apple_iis_s
Apple ][-case : REAL ][ but no serial number on bottom for some reason, only reads “2000”, Apple //e (taiwanese clone), Apple //e.

pineapple_board_s
Pineapple : Apple II+ clone motherboard + ROM card

boards_cards_sApple //e international NTSC board, CP/M card (Microsoft card clone) with Microsoft Softcard manuals & floppies. The //e board reads “broken” so it might need some work to get it working again.

user_news_swedish_s
The Swedish Apple User’s Group (AUG Sweden) “User News” – magazines from 1982-1983.
These are very interesting! These all will be scanned of cos.

books-catalogs_2_s
Manuals of all kinds and some game manuals for various games (copied), Apple II books etc. Some of the books “Bag of Tricks” and “Beneath the Apple DOS” seems to be Taiwanese/Hongkong copies. Deep Dark Castle Magazine’s are interesting, somesort of BBS-user’s magazine i think?

books-catalogs_s
Few books, catalogs, Beagle Bros. manuals, Pineapple catalog/magazine.

books-catalogs_3_s
Apple Answer Books Vol.1 and 2 and some manuals and catalogs.

softcard_s
Microsoft Softcard manuals with disks (13-sector).

original_software_s
Original games (EPYX)) and Apple Special Delivery title and even one Apple /// software.

software_tapes_s
Early (1979) original games in casette with boxes (!). These things are quite rare.

magazines_sMagazines of all kinds: Call A.P.P.L.E., Nibble, Byte, InCider, User’s News (Swedish) etc.

broderbund_sBroderbund – catalogs.

hdd_s
Heavy-beast, HDD-drive (assuming 5MB) with the interface card. Never have had an “real hdd” with Apple ][ before.

hdd_back_s
Connections in the back. Made in Sweden i’d say.

card_connection_s
Interface-card.

scsi_card_s
Model/number.

floppies_s
Floppies : about 50 pcs (Apple II and CP/M).

Lots of material to be preserved! It’s like christmas for geeky Apple ][ guy like me.

FinApple 2017 (c)
Apple ][ forever.

 

3d-printed case for FloppyEmu:

I obtained long time ago an another FloppyEmu (Rev.A) but it came without the case. I didn’t use it (it had an Macintosh firmware on it) for anything but lately i started to need an sd-boot option for my “hack //e” as i am sort of CFFA3000-cards.

floppyemu_without_case_s

Using the bare-board is not so safe nor convinient.. specially when your desk is full of other electrical components or other stuff.

apple_iie_s

So i flashed the firmware so it could be used with the Apple II and notised it wasn’t really good idea to use it without any casing so i started to look for an 3d-printed case for it.  I remembered there were few made and i was able to find the files from  :
https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2200119

case_top
Top of the  case:

case_bottomBottom of the case:

case_button
The buttons:

I took the files to few local 3d-printer companies and asked for pricing. I was quite amazed how expensive it would have been. One complete box would have cost close to 50€ with shipping (locally). The original case at : http://www.bigmessowires.com/floppy-emu would have cost some $35 shipped. Not that cheap either. If one would order the FloppyEmu and the case, then it would really not matter. No i wasn’t looking to get it for 1€ but less that 50€ for sure.

Luckily Eduardo contacted me and offered to print one for me. Thank you Eduardo very much!
I own you man. The case looks very much Apple //c or even //gs – styled design so it’s great fit for Apple ][.

assembled_beta_1_s
First test assembly:

Eduardo game me good tip: to use tape to keep the buttons on their place and make the button movement more accurate.

case_with_tapes_eduardoPicture by Eduardo:

case_opened_s
About to be closed up:

I have not yet glued it together however. If too strong glue is used, it’s impossible to open it evern again for any reason possible, That needs some thinking to do i guess.

FinApple 2017
Apple ][ forever!