DEC boards at recycler

Ethan Dicks ethan.dicks at
Thu Jul 14 10:19:08 CDT 2016

On Wed, Jul 13, 2016 at 5:56 PM, Jules Richardson
<jules.richardson99 at> wrote:
> I found various DEC (Qbus?) boards at my local tame recycler earlier.

Neat!  I used to have a friendly scrapper for a friend - got a BA23
from him, and some VAXBI boards (because  was quite happy to pay him
well over the gold value) - but that was coming up on 20 years ago.

> Also several Emulex boards which didn't
> contain anything that was obviously a part number (from memory a couple that
> were "full width" and three that were "half width") - I'm guessing they're
> probably tape controllers, but they might be hard disk.

Emulex made a lot of disk and tape and serial comms interfaces.   If
they are dual-width, they are Qbus for sure.  If they are quad-width,
they could be Qbus or Unibus, though in my experience, Unibus Emulex
cards are hex-width, taking advantage of the board space to load up
features/port count.

Thinking back to the Emulex CS/21 16-port serial card, it has a pair
of 50-pin connectors, but the array of 40-pin DIP UARTs and the
cluster of EIA line drivers by the connectors means it's fairly easy
to see it's a serial card.  I don't know if Emulex ever did Qbus
serial cards, so a dual or quad-height card with one or two 50-pin
connectors is more likely to be SCSI, disk or tape or both, than
serial, so all I'd advise there is looking for tell-tale signs of an
actual board name/number or the characteristic parts associated with
SCSI vs EIA serial.

They also made ESDI and SMD interfaces, but the pin count there is a
dead giveaway.


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