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Guessing a Kaypro II model, again!

jltursan

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I've recently purchased a Kaypro II (still not with me!) and I'm trying to wild guessing the machine specs.

Most probably it's one of the original designs (2.5Mhz Z80), it has "Kaypro 2" silkscreened in the side and has the usual grey/blue case with black front. It also has full height drives.
As I don't have any information about its motherboard or ROM I cannot guess anymore...

There's one interesting detail about the ROM tho, the "Insert disk..." boot screen shows in the top left corner a message about "Advanced Technology Systems S.A.", does it has something to do with a third party ROM?

Also, I've been trying to find some info about the Advent TurboBoard; but apart some pics, seems there's no info about details of how to build one?, does such info exists or no one has traced the board?
 

jltursan

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Yup; but it's identical as the same Kaypro pictured in the page, with full height drives, not half height. Usually this model comes with "Kaypro II" silkscreened; but this one has the unusual "Kaypro 2" legend.

Until it arrives, the only clue about the ROM is the boot screen, definitely seems a custom ROM; but I haven't been able to find any info about it (basing my searches on the "Advanced Technology Systems S.A." message)
 

jltursan

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Here's the machine (seller's photos) and the boot screen with that ATS message:



In fact, I've just noticed that S.A. is the spanish acronim for "sociedad anónima" (anonymous society), something like "limited company". In french it's used the same, "Société Anonyme". That chilean company could be the one; but there're a lot of companies with that name, no one seems to be related with Kaypro tho.

I'll dump the ROM and maybe comparing it with the available ones can shed some light.
 
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Moonferret

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Any photo's of the back? It could be a 2x with an 84 board. I've seen machines like this with 'Kaypro 2' on the sides, later 84 boards and full height Tandon TM100-2A double sided drives.

Another way to tell is the later machines have a higher resolution screen font, although I can't tell for sure from the photo above.

Either way, Kaypro's are nice machines and that one looks in good condition :)

Cheers,
Dave
 

jltursan

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Yep, here's the back:



The Kaypro seems mostly in good shape; but the keyboard has the RJ connector damaged so I'll need to replace it (I'm not sure about the cable being the original one; so if I need to build a new one it can be tricky due the capacitance issues). No idea about the floppy drives; but as I have replacements I'm not really worried about them.

I've been checking all the ROMs found in the web and none of them have that ATS string inside, seems that it's not preserved...
 

Moonferret

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Ahh, That looks like an 83 board. The 2/84 machines have the keyboard socket over to one side and have an extra RS232 interface. Drives are almost certainly single sided although I'm happy to be proven wrong :)

Those keyboard connectors are a real pain. the plastic seems to be very brittle and easy to damage. You are right about the issues with the cable. The 2/84 boards are less picky about this and I've used normal phone handset cables with them without problem.

Cheers,
Dave
 

jltursan

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Well, it's finally here!. The board:



It's a 81-240A PCB, I've already dumped the ROM and it's an adapted 81-232, the code is really close, only new areas occupied by what it looks as extra charmaps. As the machine is a Greek model (not an imported one) it's an obvious adaptation.
There's also a Greek char ROM that needs to be dumped. It has a hack probably used to switch banks, 2732's A11 is wired to Z80 PIO's PB0, I need to check the schematics to figure out how the switching is achieved (keyboard pressing, OUT's?).

The keyboard was broken; but it was an easy to fix mechanical fault.

About booting it, it works fine, both drives. I've created at least two working CP/M 2.2F boot disks based on SSDD images found in Maslin's archive.

All in all, I'm very satisfied with the machine :)
 

KC9UDX

Space Commander
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A Kaypro II is not the same as a Kaypro 2. And, the Kaypro II came long before the Kaypro 1. So did the Kaypro 2.
 

jltursan

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Yep, basically this one is a Kaypro II (a classic 2.5Mhz model) with "Kaypro 2" silkscreened everywhere, it's not as fancy as the real Kaypro 2 models (2x,'84,etc.) :-(
 

KC9UDX

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Very strange. But, at least you get a blue numeric keypad.

Now you just need a Synergy II to go with it.
 

KC9UDX

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Unfortunately, few and far between. Not to mention out of most of our price ranges! :(
 

Bungo Pony

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The Kaypro seems mostly in good shape; but the keyboard has the RJ connector damaged so I'll need to replace it

I just finished repairing the one on my Kaypro. I tried searching for identical connectors on line with no success. I had to take a different approach to repairing it. I scrounged up an old telephone, took out the circuit board, removed the surrounding components, cut it out, drilled some holes, used some standoffs, and I've got a much better and more solid keyboard plug. I haven't tried it yet since I have yet to make some Kaypro system disks.

kaypro1.jpgkaypro2.jpg
 

jltursan

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I just finished repairing the one on my Kaypro. I tried searching for identical connectors on line with no success. I had to take a different approach to repairing it. I scrounged up an old telephone, took out the circuit board, removed the surrounding components, cut it out, drilled some holes, used some standoffs, and I've got a much better and more solid keyboard plug. I haven't tried it yet since I have yet to make some Kaypro system disks.

View attachment 29425View attachment 29426

Very good looking replacement, congrats!. Mine arrived broken into pieces; but the ones found inside the keyboard case were enough to rebuild it as a functional connector. Not pretty; but it works :p

About the images, there're a lot of them and probably only a few will work with each model. I tried first a couple of them and fooled me to think that the Kaypro was bad, mispelled typing and garbage chars at boot.

Now I'm trying to know how to program the PIO, I need to toggle PB0 bit. Seems that it's the way the banked character generator is switched between english and greek charmaps. I can replace it with another EPROM to bring the Kaypro some "high resolution" (160x96) :)
 
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Bungo Pony

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My keyboard connector works great. I made some disk images and they work. However, it looks like I'll be tearing it apart again. The characters are sitting a bit too far to the right on the display, so I need to figure out how to move it more central. Also, they keyboard isn't holding up so well. The letter "A" has almost all but quit working, so it looks like I'll need to pull the keyboard apart and give the contacts some cleaning.
 

jltursan

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Messages
758
Location
Madrid, Spain
My keyboard connector works great. I made some disk images and they work. However, it looks like I'll be tearing it apart again. The characters are sitting a bit too far to the right on the display, so I need to figure out how to move it more central. Also, they keyboard isn't holding up so well. The letter "A" has almost all but quit working, so it looks like I'll need to pull the keyboard apart and give the contacts some cleaning.

There's a PCB inside with pots to adjust the monitor geometry, IIRC all is documented in the technical manual. Must be an easy task :)
Mine is now fully assembled and working.

I've dumped both boot ROM and double character generator. no idea if there's a Kaypro's active preservation scene...
 

Bungo Pony

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There's a PCB inside with pots to adjust the monitor geometry, IIRC all is documented in the technical manual. Must be an easy task :)

That's pretty much what I figured. I'll have to do that to mine yet. In the meantime, I have a much bigger task at hand...

I opened up the keyboard to see what's going on. What I found is that the bottom side of each key has a piece of foam, and a circular piece of metal attached to the end. The foam is facing the same fate as all the 8-track tapes I've fixed... the foam is deteriorating. The entire keyboard is going to need refurbishing; replacing each key's foam. It's a fairly large job.

The best way I can see to repair it is to get some open-cell foam tape from the hardware store, although I'm not sure what thickness I'll need yet. There's also the task of re-attaching the conductive metal which appears to be not unlike aluminum foil.

Your keyboard will probably eventually see the same fate as mine if it hasn't already started, so be prepared for a big job!
 

KC9UDX

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I've never repaired a foam keyboard like that, but there are quite a few write-ups of repairs like that online, somewhere.
 
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