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AmigaCD32

From Academic Kids

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Cd32.jpg


The AmigaCD32 is the world's first 32bit CD-ROM based game console. It was launched at the Science Museum in London, United Kingdom on 16 July 1993. The CD32 is based on Commodore's Amiga 1200 computer: being in-effect an A1200 without a keyboard, floppy drive, mouse, monitor, and having been placed in a suitable case.

Technical specifications

  • Motorola 68020 (68EC020RC16) at 14.3 MHz
  • 2MB Chip RAM
  • 1MB FlashROM with Kickstart ROM 3.1 and integrated cdfs.filesystem
  • 8KB of battery-backed RAM for game saves
  • AGA Chipset
  • Amiga OS 3.1
  • Proprietary (MKE) CD-ROM drive at 2x speed
  • Expansion socket (for accelerator, Hard drive, MPEG cartridge, SX-1 expansion pack)
  • 4 channel stereo sound
  • Gamepad, Serial port, 2 Gameports, Interfaces for keyboard

The CD32 could be enhanced using these devices: ProModule, Paravision SX-1 and DCE SX-32 (which optionally includes 68030 CPU).

These devices make it possible to use a floppy disk, hard disk, IBM PC keyboard and much more with this Amiga. An AmigaCD32 could be turned into a de facto Amiga 1200 via the addition of 3rd party packages. The SX-1 appeared to have been designed around Commodore's mechanical specs and not the actual unit, since it didn't fit very well and required an internal 'modification' to fit properly. Knocking the console could well knock the SX-1 loose. The upgraded SX-32 expansion pack (which included a 68030 25MHz processor) solved these problems.

NOTE: When you make CDs which you want to have read on an Amiga CD32, burn the CD as ISO 9660, level2, mode1. Don't use Rock Ridge or Joliet extensions.

Software

At launch the CD32 was bundled with two games, 'Diggers', a new game from Millennium Interactive, and Oscar from Flair. The CD32 was capable of running many, but not all, titles developed for the Amiga CDTV multimedia device (differences in CPU speed and Kickstart version prevented some of the earlier CDTV titles from running).

The console is widely regarded as unsuccessful (in fact Commodore filed for Chapter 11 the year after its release). One possible reason for this is the relative lack of original games developed for the machine. Most CD32 titles were simply A1200 games on a CD, with the occasional FMV sequence added on.

However, a large fanbase carried over from the success of other Amiga computers, and several notable titles, such as Microcosm, Liberation: Captive 2 and Super Stardust prevented the console from sliding into total obscurity.

See also

fr:AmigaCD32 it:CD32

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