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Commodore Amiga 1000

Donor: Doug Walker
Location: Williamsburg, Virginia

My co-worker Doug blessed me with this Amiga 1000. This is the original model. One big difference between the 1000 and subsequent models was that the BIOS wasn't in ROM. Rather it was loaded off a " Kickstart" disk. This added much flexibility to the system, as low level changes could be made. One notable example was the "clicking external drive" problem. Amigas would continually check an extension drive to see if it yet contained a disk. This would cause a clicking sound, which became annoying after awhile. There were third-party tools available to prevent the click, but most Amiga users just made sure that there was always a disk in the second drive. However, Amiga 1000 owners could just apply a patch to their Kickstart disk and avoid the whole problem.

Once the machine boots off of the Kickstart disk, it then needs a Workbench disk, that contains the OS. Unfortunately, Doug didn't provide me with a Kickstart disk, so I can't get the box up and running. (Although, to be honest, I haven't actually asked him if he still has the disk. I guess I ought to.)

Earlier Comments

Owner: Joey Ennis
Location: Smithfield, NC

 I bought this Amiga several years ago from a friend, and I still use it for games today, the multitasking is great. In fact it was one of the very first computers to offer real time multitasking. And the memory was expandable to 8 megs. It could digitize pictures, video, and even display pictures with more than 4000 colors in ham mode. Animation was a breeze, the "Juggler" demo proved this.

Some Downfalls:

  • Commodore replaced this with the 500 (see corrections)
  • Did not support High Density Disks (see corrections)
  • Processor could not be upgraded. (see corrections)
  • AMIGAOS could only be upgraded to 1.3.
  • Would not run AmiTCP, the PPP software for AmigaOS (see corrections)
  • Only 16 colors in Workbench mode (Later fixed by the A1200 with the AGA chip)

The Amiga was a great computer that never really got a chance to live, although they are still being used and supported today.

Here is the original spec sheet for the Amiga 1000.

In recent years, many of the above problems have been fixed. Thus, I have been inundated with loads of corrections sent in over the last year. Here are a few:

  • The processor can be upgraded, initially to the 68010, then 68020 and 68030 cards were available, such as Phoenix boards.
  • The OS can be updated to 3.1.
  • The Amiga 4000 first featured AGA, the Amiga 1200 was released later. AGA consists of several chips, not 1.
  • VisCorp never bought Amiga, Gateway 2000 did. VisCorp could afford the price when Escom went bankrupt. Now there are 2 independent Amiga subsidiaries under Gateway 2000: Amiga International and Amiga, Inc. Gateway 2000 has promised to bring new Amiga models to the market this year or maybe in the beginning of 1999.
  • The 2000 replaced the 1000. The 500 was to provide a low cost upgrade from the 64/128.
  • Re: High density disks, when the 1000 was designed there were no HD floppies. You can using current OS.
  • PPP runs just fine on a 1000 with new kickstart ROM and 2.0 OS.
  • The A1000 has the interesting feature of the signatures of the creators, including Carl Sassenrath, on the underside of the lid.
  • AmigaOS is slated to be upgraded in Spring 1998 to v3.5.

My apologies to the Amiga community for not adding these corrections sooner! I would love to list everyone that sent in corrections, but there were literally dozens.

For the latest Amiga information, be sure to check the Amiga Web Directory.

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