kalleboo's retro tech blog

Mac Peripherals: SCSI/ADB/Serial

SCSI Tower of Power

When I was a kid and my only disposable income came from delivering junk mail on Sundays, the only SCSI peripheral I could afford was a Zip drive, which I used as a replacement for a bigger hard disk. I wanted to play a game? Got to put in my "Games" Zip disk. It did work out really well for me, I mostly avoided the "click of death" (only had it on one disk, which I repaired using the "cut off the outer edge of the disk" method)

One dream I always had was to fill up all the IDs in my SCSI chain. This is the ongoing missing of the project described in this session.

Current SCSI tower of power status:

SCSI devices not working: MD Data drive (Sony MDH-10)

SCSI devices not used in chain: SCSI-Ethernet adapter (Asante Micro EN/SC)

To be added: Hand scanner Ezier Gray

For more SCSI devies, my wishlist includes an external Apple SCSI harddisk

Planning on writing more on the individual devices and SCSI driver software here



CD-R drive (CRD-BP2 / IO Data CDRW-SX124BG)

When I was still a newbie to HARD OFF[LINK], SCSI stuff seemed rare, so when I saw this drive I picked it up. At the time I still only owned the 8500 which had a built-in CD-ROM drive, but this external drive ended being pretty handy since it was much faster (24x) and as a burner it is much more reliable with CD-R and CD-RW discs.

MO drive (Fujitsu MCE2064SS / IO Data MOF-R640/UPCIN)

Magneto-Optical was really popular in Japan back in the day. I'd seen a lot of MO drives at HARD OFF but they were either for USB, internal IDE, or were missing some proprietary barrel jack DC adapter. When I spotted this AC-powered SCSI model I picked it up right away. MO was really great. Compact, freely licensed, and decently fast. I wonder why it never caught on in the west. Instead back in Sweden I bought a Zip drive and lost my data to the Click of Death.

My 500 yen drive has one flaw - it won't stay in an ejected state. Whenever it ejects it clunks the disc holder back into an insterted state. So when you insert a disc, you have to hit eject so the mechanism lines up with the slot, then quickly jam the disc in. when you eject, you have to pull the disc out instantly or it will jam.

I found another drive of the same model and have yet to test it, hopefully it works well.

I also want to pick up a USB model to use as quick sneakernet file swapping method

Zip drive (Iomega Zip100 / JDM EPSON re-badge)

Under Construction

summary: I've bought 2 drives and countless discs and the click of death wont escape me, fuck Iomega.

SyQuest drive (SQ5110C "POWERUSER" "88 MB C")

As a Mac user in the 90's, reading MacWorld (Sweden) you couldn't escape the mentions of SyQuest drives. My uncle also had one, and it seemed fantastic. Massive disks! When I as a middle schooler got a job delivering junk mail, I could suddenly afford a disk expansion for my Centris 660AV. My choices were between an external hard disk, a modern SyQuest drive, and a Zip drive. Even then as an uninformed teen, the writing was on the wall for SyQuest and I bought a Zip drive.

So when I started collecting SCSI devices a classic SyQuest drive was a given. But SyQuest never caught on in Japan. Months on Yahoo Auctions and Mercari turned up nothing older then the more modern EZ135 drives. So I ended up getting one from eBay through the dreaded Global Shipping Program.

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

summary; it worked but the discs didnt. found local discs that worked, had some interesting stuff on them for a voyeur

PD drive (Panasonic LF-1600)

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

summary; picked this up as a nice portable CD-ROM drive, it turns out it's a PD drive which is far more interesting

Tape drive (NEC PC-BK 4000 DDS-2 / ARCHIVE Python 28388-XXX)

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

summary; had never used tape before, it was interesting

ADB Wombat

The ADB wombat is a cool way to get USB keyboards and mice working on an old Mac, or more importantly, getting ADB keyboard and mice working on modern Macs

USB to Serial on MacOS 9

One thing I picked up on auctions is a 24-port managed gigabit switch for 2500 yen. But the console is serial. And my PowerBook G3 only has USB... What do? Well, get a serial adapter.

Luckily, the venerable FTDI FT232 chipset has been setting the standard for over a decade and a half, so it's old enough to have a MacOS 9 driver, and serial hasn't changed enough in the intervening time that there are still brand-new products being produced that are still compatible!

I bought this cheap DTECH DT-5011 (based on the FT232RL / ZT213 chipsets) on Amazon and it works perfectly on my G3 in MacOS 9 using drivers released in 2004.

I also ordered a QuickTake 100 digital camera, which uses an Apple DIN Serial port, so of course I wanted a period-approriate DIN serial port USB adapter, so I also bought a Keyspan USA-28X B Twin Serial adapter. I tested this one by connecting to the FT232 USB adapter connected to my MacBook Pro over a null modem cable (actually a "MIDI connection cable" which had the same crossover requird) and running ZTerm to chat to myself.

ADB stuff

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

Justy Trackpad

Misc (Microphones, Remotes)

The classic Apple Remote (model number matched it to an old Performa) works with our bedroom Sony TV

Last updated: 2019-08-10
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