Tandy 1000TL Pictures

Here are some pictures of my Tandy 1000TL. You can click on any image to see a larger picture.

Left: DeskMate 3.05 with Home Organizer.

The monitor is a Kenitec PX-14S. This is a basic 15Ē color VGA monitor, with a maximum resolution of 640x480, which is fine since that is what my VGA card supports anyway. This monitor was a gift. It has smaller dot pitch than the Tandy VGM-220 that it replaced and which I still have.

The mouse is a standard Microsoft serial mouse. It plugs into the built-in serial port. It was a gift also.
Right: Front panel view.

The CD-ROM drive is a Pioneer DR-U32X. This is a 32-speed SCSI CDROM drive. To play CDís on it, I connect my speakers to the plug in front, since the Tandy sound chip doesnít have a CD audio plug. This drive cost $15 on eBay.
Left: External speaker.

I have Optimus external speakers. These speakers are good since they have bass boost built in. Speakers like these cost $10-15. Even better would be speakers with adjustable bass and treble. It is good that they have volume control, at least, since the volume control knob on the front of my Tandy is broken off (see front panel view above).
Right: View from the back. Scary, huh? Actually only a few of these snaking wires are plugged into the Tandy. Keyboard and power, of course. Mouse plugged into the serial port with 25-to-9 pin adapter. Tandy-style joystick. Network cable - only cat 3 is needed since the network card is only 10Mbit. And VGA monitor.
Left: A view of the built-in joystick, serial, printer, and video ports.

The printer port is a card-edge connector, also nonstandard. You need a special cable to connect it to a printer, and there were different types of cables depending on whether you were connecting it to a Tandy printer or a standard one. I have the cable for Tandy printers, but my old DMP-132 has died and gone to printer heaven.

The built-in video uses a 9-pin D-sub connector that works with both mono TTL and CGA monitors. I have a mono TTL to use with it, but I'm using VGA instead at the moment. With a mono TTL monitor, the video is compatible with Hercules. With a CGA monitor, it is compatible with that, or with PCjr, and there is an additional 640x200x16 mode that is specific to the Tandy 1000SL/TL/RL series.
Right: Tandy-style joystick.

The Tandy uses special joysticks with 6-pin DIN connectors. The joysticks are standard, only the connector is different, so they work with any PC game. One thing, though: the built-in DAC chip will not work with joysticks enabled (games can still use the 3-voice circuitry).
Left: A rear view of the expansion slots.

There are 5 8-bit slots in this machine, and all of them are filled. The card in the middle is the network card. The one at the right is the video card - note the DIP switches. This card is switchable for either an 8- or 16-bit slot, or for either EGA or VGA mode (note also the connectors for both monitor types).
Right: View with the cover off.

The hard drive is a Conner CP30540, an old SCSI drive originally pulled from a Sun server. This is a 520MB drive, of which 500MB is usable in my Tandy. I am still using Tandy DOS 3.3 (uses less RAM than later versions), which has a maximum partition size of 32MB, so this drive is split into 16 partitions, C: and E: through S:. Right now I am only using partitions up to J:, so I have lots of space left. This drive was about $10 on eBay, plus shipping.

The floppy drive is a Samsung SFD-321B 1.44MB floppy drive. This is a standard 1.44MB floppy drive. I got it for $10 at the computer store down the street. The eject button fits fine through the front of the case (see front panel view, above), so I didnít have to cut a hole in the front of my Tandy to use the drive, as sometimes happens. The Tandy has a built-in floppy controller, but it uses non-standard low-density drives that draw power through the data cable. Those drives are to find nowadays. I am using an add-on floppy controller (see below). Anyway, it is good to have a high-density drive, since you can't find low-density disks any more either.

The Tandy DOS Format command can't deal with this drive, so I'm using a third-party format program.
Left: A view with the drives removed. There are only two power cables, so I need a splitter to put three drives in.
Right: With cards removed. Up to 3/4-length cards can be used in the Tandy.
Left: With the power supply removed.

There is nothing under the drive bracket (the motherboard is L-shaped).
Right: A close-up of the motherboard.

There are 3 rows of 8 64kx4 120ns DRAM chips. The four on the top left constitute the 128k upgrade, which cost $6 back in 1993. Nowadays, the chips would probably cost about the same but be much harder to find. The upgrade increases RAM to 768k, of which 128k is used by the onboard video controller, leaving 640k for DOS.

My new Windows XP machine also allocates video RAM from system RAM using the onboard controller - funny how everything old is new again.

At top right, the 286 chip has been replaced with an Improve Technologies Make-It 486 processor module. I bought this online for $40, just recently. You canít get these any more, donít even ask, I was amazed I found it, it was the last one in stock. This chip enables Tantrakr to play my favorite .S3M at 19,830Hz, as opposed to 6600Hz with the old 286, so I got about a 200% speed increase (according to the Tantrakr ďbenchmarkĒ :-) ). I have a 287 math coprocessor, but I had to take it out (see empty socket) since it was incompatible with the 486 module.
Both sides: Here is the front and back of the box the processor upgrade came in.

The box says the upgrade gives a "performance boost of 200%, 300%, even 400% or more." As noted, I get a 200% increase. I think it must be talking about running 32-bit code when it talks about more than that.
Left: MicroMainframe 5150T EMS card.

I bought this card many years ago; the guy I bought it from had used it in a BBS system (remember those?). Donít remember what I paid for it - Tandy used to sell these for the 1000's. I wrote a 4.x driver for it since MicroMainframe wanted $50 for theirs at the time, and I thought that was too much to pay (you can get my driver from my FTP site). This card has worked like a charm since. It has 2MB RAM on it, which is the most it will hold, but there is a connector on the bottom for a daughterboard that holds 2MB more. I don't have the daughterboard, though.
Right: DTK PII-151B Mini/Micro-2 floppy controller card.

This card came in a box of mixed hard drive, floppy drive, tape, and VGA controllers I bought on eBay for about $20. It works in the Tandy because it has a built-in BIOS, and because of a program I wrote for AUTOEXEC.BAT which disables the built-in floppy controller. Without NOFLOPPY.COM, this card would not work because of an I/O port conflict with the built-in controller (the BIOS will not disable the built-in floppy controller, so you have to do it with a program).

This card uses standard floppy drives and cables, which as noted above is good since you canít buy Tandy-style floppy drives any more.
Left: Rancho Technologies RT1000B-2 SCSI controller card.

I bought this card online recently for $15. The software for it I downloaded separately.

I think SCSI is a good way to go with older machines, since you can still get peripherals for it, and it can save expansion slots - instead of separate hard drive and CD-ROM drive controllers, I only need this card.

The ASPI driver for this card (needed for peripherals other than a hard drive) requires at least a 286.
Right: Onboard Technologies ZVGA16 EGA/VGA card.

I think I bought this out of a bin at Computer Renaissance for a couple bucks, but it was a while ago. This card works in either an 8- or a 16-bit slot, with either an EGA or a VGA monitor; DIP switches on the back determine its mode. When it is in a 16-bit slot, it supports up to 1024x768 in 16 colors, but in an 8-bit slot it is just basic 640x480 VGA, which is fine.
Left: 3Com 3C509B-TPO Ethernet card.

This card was one of a set of 5 I bought from my old employer for about $10. It is a 16-bit card, but it works fine in an 8-bit slot (it requires at least a 286 processor). I downloaded the packet driver for it off the Internet. This is a 10Mbps card.
Right: View of screen showing the Tandy logging onto the Windows server.

I include this because I can't count the number of times I have heard it said that "DOS can't access a Windows network." Well, obviously it can. You need to get Microsoft Client 3.0 for DOS; get Disk 1 and Disk 2. MSClient came with an NDIS driver for my Ethernet card, so I didn't need to find one. If your server is running Windows Server 2003, you will need to make a few changes to the Default Domain Controller security settings as well.

One drawback to Microsoft networking is that it takes 190kB of RAM - outrageous. I used freeware programs Ask and Drvinst to make an AUTOEXEC.BAT file that asks me what things I want to load and then loads only those options (i.e., Microsoft networking, NFS, packet driver, CD-ROM, mouse). So I only load Microsoft networking when I actually want to access shared files on the server or print to the network printer.


Below is a picture of my local network:

I have too many PC's :-D! In addition to accessing the printer and the Windows server, the Tandy can access files on the Linux server via NFS (using the TSoft NFS client). It could also access folders shared by the WfW, Windows 98, and Windows XP machines. It can share the DSL modem using its packet driver and browse the Web with Arachne. The printer is an HP LaserJet 1100; there is a WordPerfect 5.1 driver for it, or programs such as DeskMate can print to it using their LaserJet drivers. Only Windows 98 can access the photo (color) printer, so if I wanted to print something there from the Tandy I would have to copy it over first.

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