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Hi All,

 

I recently picked up two video cards for the LC PDS slot.  I'm not sure where to find the drivers as Google isn't really turning up any good results.

 

The first card is a Formac Pronitron LC/FP display video card.  It appears to have the standard 15 pin Macintosh video connector on it.  Does anyone know where I can find the drivers for this card?  Also, a user manual would be awesome.  I'm hoping to use it with a VGA adapter to drive an external display at 640*480.

 

The second card is also a Formac labled model.  However, I'm less sure of which one it is exactly.  A sticker on the ROM says PG/LC Rev. 1.0.  Additionally, it isn't using a standard 15 pin Mac video connector, but rather a connector that looks similar to VGA, but only has two rows of pins, with 5 pins on the top row and 4 pins on the bottom row.  Does anyone know any more details about this card or at least what type of connector it is?

 

If photos are required of either card I can provide them.

 

Thanks,

Justin

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I thought they sounded different, no mention of them over on http://lowendmac.com/video/lc/index.html

 

These cards have the short connectors for the original LC Slot specifically? Most NuBus VidCards from the era had drivers built into DeclROM, so I wouldn't be at all surprised if the drivers are in ROM on your cards as well.

 

"FP" usually means Full Page, so you're looking at a lot more pixels than 640x480, but why anyone would do an FPD card for the LC is beyond me. If it has the LCIII connector, that's a different story entirely. The DA-15 connector on it is a very good sign.

 

The second card's connector is the dreaded DE-9 (seemingly proprietary in numeropus flavors) that nobody has figured out how to use except with the specific monitor with which it was paired for sale.

 

For the most part, manuals for cards such as yours have become a thing lost in the past.

 

Pics would be great!

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Okay, thank you for the info on the cards. I'll probably toss the DE-9 based connector card onto the Trading Post soon so someone who has the appropriate display can take advantage of it.

 

Correct, they have the shorter LC PDS connector. I don't have an actual LC, but it appears that it would fit my CC/LC520 board PDS which I believe is the same.

 

I should have some time to upload pictures in a bit.

 

I only just realized I have never owned a da15 Mac to VGA adapter. I'll have to order one from eBay before I can continue with trying to test anything.

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Okay, thank you for the info on the cards. I'll probably toss the DE-9 based connector card onto the Trading Post soon so someone who has the appropriate display can take advantage of it.

 

I can save you some time and offer to take it off your hands for a reasonable sum. I would like to reverse engineer (and document) it. PM me with what you think is fair, plus priority mail shipping to 95130, assuming you're in the US.

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Thanks for the input and offers.  I'll split this up into two separate posts within this thread.  First, the card with the DA-15 connector:

post-6609-0-39610500-1486253634_thumb.jpgpost-6609-0-83329400-1486253479_thumb.jpg

post-6609-0-46373500-1486253534_thumb.jpgpost-6609-0-95959400-1486253492_thumb.jpg

post-6609-0-16832500-1486253509_thumb.jpg

 

After loading into the LC 520 (with 575 logic board), I was able to find out the following:

post-6609-0-88308200-1486253660_thumb.jpg

post-6609-0-39023000-1486253572_thumb.jpgpost-6609-0-42338500-1486253609_thumb.jpg

 

Unfortunately, I'm not really looking for any of those resolutions.  Is there a way to force the card into doing 640*480, 800*600, or 1024*768?  Or is it just throwing those resolutions out there since there is no cable or adapter hooked up to its DA-15 connector?  I wouldn't mind using a full page display as a secondary monitor, but a quick glance at eBay only turned up one display (a Radius model) with the DE-9 connector, and at over $700.  Looking to stay below $100 if I get a CRT, or preferably just an adapter and a 15" VGA LCD 4:3 display capable of scaling down to 640*480 (so most of the mid to late 2000's Dell LCDs should work okay for this).

Edited by just.in.time
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Now the DE-9 card that you both are interested in:

post-6609-0-66434200-1486254374_thumb.jpgpost-6609-0-09659300-1486254352_thumb.jpg

post-6609-0-27453500-1486254398_thumb.jpg

It looks like the connector bracket is missing a screw, but otherwise looks complete.  If necessary I can place it into the LC 575 board and test it to see if it shows up in Monitors.  I'll probably pull out the other card for now anyways since having windows and the screen saver occasionally disappear to an invisible display is a bit annoying. aperezbios gets first dibs since he asked first.  If he doesn't want it then I'll let you know, Trash.

 

Edited to add: Just popped in the DE-9 connector based card, and in the Monitors control panel it is only giving the option of Black&White for the depth, however it supports the 1024*768 and 1024*1024 resolutions.  No idea if these options would change with an actual display hooked up.

Edited by just.in.time
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Now the DE-9 card that you both are interested in:

attachicon.giflc pds video de9 top.JPGattachicon.giflc pds video de9 bottom.JPG

attachicon.giflc pds video de9 connector.JPG

It looks like the connector bracket is missing a screw, but otherwise looks complete.  If necessary I can place it into the LC 575 board and test it to see if it shows up in Monitors.  I'll probably pull out the other card for now anyways since having windows and the screen saver occasionally disappear to an invisible display is a bit annoying. aperezbios gets first dibs since he asked first.  If he doesn't want it then I'll let you know, Trash.

 

Edited to add: Just popped in the DE-9 connector based card, and in the Monitors control panel it is only giving the option of Black&White for the depth, however it supports the 1024*768 and 1024*1024 resolutions.  No idea if these options would change with an actual display hooked up.

I doubt it, it's probably just a monochrome card, but that's okay. I'm still interested.

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SWEET! You'll get more info out of it than in the Monitors Control Panel if you do a little DeclROM Spelunking on both cards.

 

I'm only interested in the card academically as it were, my reverse engineering to do list is  .  .  .  well  .  .  .  ::)

Edited by Trash80toHP_Mini
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Unfortunately, I'm not really looking for any of those resolutions.  Is there a way to force the card into doing 640*480, 800*600, or 1024*768?  Or is it just throwing those resolutions out there since there is no cable or adapter hooked up to its DA-15 connector?  I wouldn't mind using a full page display as a secondary monitor, but a quick glance at eBay only turned up one display (a Radius model) with the DE-9 connector  .  .  .

 

Most likely all those resolutions/refresh rates are "non-standard." I'd be very surprised if any were output @60Hz for the VGA res. spectrum. You're not going to be able to force it to do anything it's not hardwired to do.

 

You're on the right track in your thinking though, just get a pivoting Dell ****Sync/whatever and run it in portrait mode at the card's Portrait resolution/sync rate. Portrait mode ROCKS!

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SWEET! You'll get more info out of it than in the Monitors Control Panel if you do a little DeclROM Spelunking on both cards.

Hi Trash, I tried following that link and going to the two links in the DeclROM section, but they were both dead links :(

 

Unfortunately those 4 resolutions, with either L * W or W * L don't seem common at all... at least not in the past 20 years.  No idea how I'll get around that problem.  My Dell ST2220L definitely doesn't support any of them according to the manual.

 

I think this card may be dead in the water purely due to the fact that it has no modern resolution support.

 

Looking at a vintage Apple Monitor, the Macintosh Portrait Display, it has 640 * 870 resolution support, but only in black and white and it uses a 13w3 connector as opposed to the normal DB-15 connector that this card, and most Macs of the era used.

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There were people doing DTP with PageMaker on Mac Pluses back in the 1980s. Layout on an LC doesn't surprise me.

 

Yep, but the Plus was the rockingest Mac you could get at the dawn of DTP. By the time the LC came out the Lino output crowd had moved on to the IIci track and stayed there almost forever. Folks coming into the DTP-BigThree classes at NYMUG that already had LCs at home would be the kind of market for such Card/Monitor combos, maybe schools with LC/IIe Card installed bases might use a card like that in the art departments?

 

So I guess it shouldn't surprise me either, much of what was available as upgrades from the ads in the back of 'User & 'World made little sense to me, but might to those looking to expand upon their bought and paid for Mac.

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Neat finds on these cards. Also very nice that they popped in and appear to be working immediately.

 

Anything a Plus could do, an LC was going to be able to do at least a little vaguely better. The question was probably more about how much better than a Plus you needed to do than about whether or not an LC was "appropriate" for the work purely because the IIci and IIfx existed.

 

Of perhaps additional relevance is that just a little later on in 1992-1993 Apple regularly showed LCIIIs and Performa 475s with portrait displays on them in its own marketing materials.

 

If an LC seems "acceptable but not ideal" in the face of the existence of the IIci, the LCIII and 605/475 probably seemed a lot better by their day, for the lowering cost of more RAM, the fact you shouldn't need a specialized card on those systems (leaving room free for Ethernet), and the fact that the top end had sort of languished a little bit between the introduction of the 950 and the 8100 anyway. (There's the 840, but I don't have numbers on hand as to exactly how helpful those 7MHz were.)

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