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 IBM 5161 Expansion unit Upgrade Options View next topic
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Joined: 18 Feb 2012
Posts: 26
Location: Las Vegas NV

PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:25 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Razz I have been extremely fortunate over the last couple of weeks to have gotten almost all of the parts I need for the IBM 5161 expansion unit. I was given the extender and receiver gards by a friend and was able to purchase the actual expansion unit minus any hard drives or controller for only $70.00 including shipping. I found a 10 Meg Miniscribe 2012 MFM full height hard drive and Xebec controller for only $35.00 through E-Bay. Sometimes I do get lucky. The nice part is that when I tried the system, it actually booted to DOS on the hard disk. Razz

Now I have a problem. I need to fill out the rest of the expansion unit. I have another friend who is giving me another hard disk drive, and a Western Digital controller. He's pre-configuring the controller so that adding them and replacing the Xebec will be a straight forward drop in project.

I still need a couple things though, like a dual 9 pin serial card, 8 bit sound card, and if you can recommend anything to add, I will be more than happy to take a look.

My current configuration is as follows.

In the 5150 PC
Dual floppy drives, with controller
CGA graphics adapter powering the IBM 5153 CGA monitor
IBM 5152 Graphics Printer
AST Six-Pack Plus with 384 Kb memory upgrade, parallel and asynchonous serial port and game port, clock callenday. So the system has a full compliment of 640 K RAM.
Extender card to connect the IBM 5161 expansion unit.

The expansion unit currently has the forementioned Miniscribe hard disk, with Xebec controller, a 3com 28.8 modem 8 bit modem, Intel 8/16 LAN Adapter.

So you see there is a lot more room for upgrades. Too bad I can't use my additional RAM card to boost memory capacity. Embarassed

So like I said, if you have the dual 9 pin serial card (The ones I have seen on E-Bay are just too expensive) or suggestions for useful addons. Please reply to this thread. Cool

I look forward to seeing your responses.

Thanks much. Very Happy

Being the first isn't always best, but being best will make you first! - Quote from a friend who recently passed.
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Joined: 19 Oct 2004
Posts: 138
Location: Lynnwood,WA

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 4:54 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Network Adapter, if you are going vintage an IBM Token Ring would be vintage correct, if you are wanting something modern-day functional, then I'd get one of the old 3COM EtherLink, intel EtherExpress, or SMC 8013 cards as they support regular CAT5E and work on an 8-bit data bust regardless of which version you have. Most of them have a jumper to switch between modes.

Another would be an MDA or Hercules card for monochrome graphics on a second monitor, I always wanted to see that wacky setup John Cleese had in the Compaq commercials advertising how everything was in one on the Compaq vs the IBM having 2 displays for both graphics formats. Someday I might try that with my semi hot-rodded halfie XT/PC thing I built.

84' Tandy 1000(a)
90' GEM Computer Products 286
12' Franken-486
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Joined: 04 Jun 2012
Posts: 3
Location: a small farmtown in CT

PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 5:26 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

If I was you, I'd get a 3Com Etherlink II and an RJ45 tranceiver. If you could possibly find one, try to get an IBM PGA adapter and matching 5175 monitor. You'd have to sacrifice the CGA card/5153, but PGA is so rare and was so high performance in it's time, it's more than worth it. You could also get an EMS memory upgrade.

"640k of memory is all anybody will ever need"
-Bill gates
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