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Unexpected ewaste find: MicroQue PDS4/Top Hat. Quad LC PDS Adapter!

Compgeke

Well-known member
A bit of an unusual one, a quad LC PDS adapter. I found it shoved in with a bunch of VME-style cards scrapped from some sort of audio setup, along with a Radius Color Pivot IIsi interface.

Quite a big card, sadly I did not find the case it would've gone with. Just bare board in a gaylord. Oh well.

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bdurbrow

Well-known member
Um... we're sure it's an LC card? As in the 020 that got half it's bus width stolen???

What would it have been used for?
 

olePigeon

Well-known member
@bdurbrow It would have been used with a MicroMac Power Workstation, DGR LC Max, or DGR MultiMax. Sonnet made a similar product, but as far as I can tell, it was only sold in Japan.
 

Trash80toHP_Mini

NIGHT STALKER
From that description of the MicroMac Power WorkStation it seems like the it could only be used with their ThunderCache accelerator and a single PDS card. That makes a lot of sense in that accelerators do mot require an interrupt.

@olePigeon it will be interesting to compare your card with this one, which looks like it might be a two layer board with traces only on surface layers? Could also be a four layer board with minimal traceing within power and ground layers? Can you take some pics of the board held up to the Sun or other strong backlight to see which might be the case @Compgeke

Identifying the ICs and their functions should tell us if it's an A-B-C-D switch to single card setup or if it allows cards to share the single interrupt available?

Cloning that board could be great fun. ;)
 
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Trash80toHP_Mini

NIGHT STALKER
This header makes me think that two or more non-conflicting cards might possibly be capable of running at the same time. Does the IIe card occupy an interrupt?

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olePigeon

Well-known member
@Compgeke @Trash80toHP_Mini Got my adapter out this morning. Looks to be identical. I bet if I pealed off the DGR Technologies sticker, it'd say MicroQue. Also, I'm relieved to see that your two IC sockets aren't populated. It leads me to believe that my adapter isn't incomplete afterall. Also included are pictures of the Sonnet Twinslot LC adapter. It was sold with a new lid that just made it look like an extra tall LC. There used to be pictures of the Twinslot LC on Google, but they appear to have disappeared. It was on a Japanese website.

There's a second power adapter that was sold with it. The bitty LC PSU doesn't have enough juice to run more than one card. :)

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olePigeon

Well-known member
LC Twinslot is 4 layers. It has each layer numbered when I shine a light through it. I'm looking for something similar on the DGR, but I'm assuming it's also 4 layer. It's more than 2, anyway.
 

Trash80toHP_Mini

NIGHT STALKER
Didn't check the pinouts, but it looks like Power & Ground are surface runs. Can't see Power or Ground planes, but I'll wager there's shielding between the signal layers?
 

Cory5412

Daring Pioneer of the Future
Staff member
Um... we're sure it's an LC card? As in the 020 that got half it's bus width stolen???

What would it have been used for?

Just because a machine is slow doesn't mean there's nothing you can do with expansion on it.

There's loads of potential use cases for running an LC-series machine with multiple slots, like this. I often talk about how in effect there aren't options for these slots, but if you can find the card there really was a variety of different

Network + IIe, Network + Accelerator, Network + Accelerator + IIe, the three of those plus a graphics card. Heck, there's plenty of use cases I can think of for just, one LC with two ethernet cards.

In addition to that: not all LCs are the LC/LCII -- the LCIII/III+ and 475/605 (plus the 630/580 and the 5x0 series, although these risers won't fit in those) all have significantly improved architectures which make these upgrades make even more sense.
 

mmu_man

Well-known member
Wow, didn't know such a thing existed… wonder if it'd fit my LC-III.
Almost as simple as adding a slice on RISC-PCs :)
 

olePigeon

Well-known member
@mmu_man Yeah, it's very RISC-ish. I watched a video on that recently. I was insanely jealous of the dual processor slots. How cool would it have been if the IIci had dual PDS slots? Then just load up a VM for the second CPU, or software that's multi-processor aware like Photoshop or Matlab.

I have the middle part, but it's just the metal chassis. No front bezel. :( I also don't have the extra powersupply or any of the mounting brackets. Can't do much with it, unfortunately.
 

cheesestraws

Well-known member
Almost as simple as adding a slice on RISC-PCs :)

Ahhh yes, that's what it reminded me of.

I watched a video on that recently. I was insanely jealous of the dual processor slots.

Strongly recommend getting hold of a RiscPC if you ever get the chance. Acorn machines in general are pretty cool, and the RiscPC has the true mixture of great ideas and dubious execution that's very characteristic of Acorn in many ways... But the x86 cards that slot into the second CPU socket make Apple's look embarrassingly bad in a lot of ways.
 

Compgeke

Well-known member
I've actually got an RPC 700 here. It's a pretty fun machine, with a 233 MHz Strong ARM via a Kinetic CPU upgrade and a graphic equalizer in the top slice. I need to get a network card for it next and make the sound work at some point.

Runs Doom really well, though! I drug it out to VCF West this year.

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cheesestraws

Well-known member
Sorry for thread derail!

I've actually got an RPC 700 here

Am I right in thinking you ended up with Chocky's RiscPC? If so, that's heading towards being some kind of historic artefact, though possibly under the category of "great dedication to bashing one's head against walls"—the RISC OS Firefox port looked like a horrible job.

I need to get a network card for it next and make the sound work at some point.

If you need proxy shipping from the UK for network card stuff, let me know, if that would be helpful.
 
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