HP 1000 A900 ("Magic") Questions

Paul Birkel pbirkel at gmail.com
Sat May 11 01:59:16 CDT 2019

>-----Original Message-----
>From: cctech [mailto:cctech-bounces at classiccmp.org] On Behalf Of Glen Slick via cctech
>Sent: Friday, May 10, 2019 1:34 PM
>To: General Discussion: On-Topic Posts
>Subject: Re: HP 1000 A900 ("Magic") Questions
>On Fri, May 10, 2019 at 4:14 AM Paul Birkel via cctech
><cctech at classiccmp.org> wrote:
>> Aficionados;
>> I'm interested in acquiring an HP1000 A900, in any form-factor.
>> (http://www.hpmuseum.net/display_item.php?hw=594)


>Another hard part is the 12222 memory frontplane. Maybe it wouldn't be
>too hard to build an equivalent PCB if the proper connectors can be
>acquired. They are 3-row 96-pin connectors. Maybe common DIN 41612
>connectors would work, I haven't looked at that closely.

I can confirm that DIN 41612 connectors should work fine, along with a 4-layer PCB.  HP doesn't seem to have gone "odd-ball" in that particular design choice.  I'd need to get someone to buzz out the connections to ensure that they are 1:1 all the way across before designing a PCB to fit.


>At a minimum you need either a 12005 serial card or a 12040 serial mux
>for a console interface. Both of those are fairly common, although you
>might pay more for cables than the boards if you don't build cables
>yourself. There are several firmware versions for the 12040 mux. If
>you have a D mux you need need VCP firmware 4020 or higher on the
>12203A cache controller.

Cables, and those specialized HP connectors, are always a pain.  I would need to make up my own, given my budget, I expect.  I do have one or two possible spares from a 21MX I/O environment that probably could be repurposed assuming that the edge-connectors match up ... which they may not.  We'll see.  Thanks for the notes about the firmware version issue.

>As you also said you need a 12009 HPIB card for a storage interface.
>Running HPDrive on a PC to emulate disk and tape drives works well if
>you don't have any real HPIB disk and tape drives. I managed to pick
>up a 12016 SCSI card. Those are rare and expensive.

I'll bet!  Yes, I was assuming that HPDrive would be the way to proceed; it's good to get confirmation on that point.  Also the availability of a suitably configured RTE.


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